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Porphyromonas gingivalis has been linked to the development and progression of oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), and is considered to be a high-risk factor for ESCC. Currently, the commonly used methods for P. gingivalis detection are culture or DNA extraction-based, which are either time and labour intensive especially for high-throughput applications. We aimed to establish and evaluate a rapid and sensitive direct quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) protocol for the detection of P. gingivalis without DNA extraction which is suitable for large-scale epidemiological studies. Paired gingival swab samples from 192 subjects undergoing general medical examinations were analysed using two direct and one extraction-based qPCR assays for P. gingivalis. Tris-EDTA buffer-based direct qPCR (TE-direct qPCR), lysis-based direct qPCR (lysis-direct qPCR) and DNA extraction-based qPCR (kit-qPCR) were used, respectively, in 192, 132 and 60 of these samples for quantification of P. gingivalis. The sensitivity and specificity of TE-direct qPCR was 95.24% and 100% compared with lysis-direct qPCR, which was 100% and 97.30% when compared with kit-qPCR; TE-direct qPCR had an almost perfect agreement with lysis-direct qPCR (κ = 0.954) and kit-qPCR (κ = 0.965). Moreover, the assay time used for TE-direct qPCR was 1.5 h. In conclusion, the TE-direct qPCR assay is a simple and efficient method for the quantification of oral P. gingivalis and showed high sensitivity and specificity compared with routine qPCR.
Acupuncture, as complementary medicine, has been used since many years ago in china and many researches have proved its effect separately or combined with other treatment methods.
To compare therapeutic effects of Acupuncture plus estazolam and Cognitive - Behavioral Therapies plus estazolam on insomnia.
To determine the efficacy of acupuncture as complementary medicine in treating insomnia.
64 insomnia patients were randomly divided into an acupuncture group and a behavioral group, 30 cases in acupuncture group and 18 cases in behavioral group completed research. The acupuncture group was treated by administration oral estazolam before sleeping each day and needling, three times a week, the behavioral group received Stimulus control as Cognitive - Behavioral Therapy plus oral estazolam before sleeping each day. Treatment course was 3 weeks. The insomnia severity index (ISI) scores before and after treatment were observed in the both groups.
The total effective rate was 86.7% in the acupuncture group and 50% in the behavioral group with statistically significant difference (P < 0.05). The cured rate of 30% in the acupuncture group was significantly higher than 16.7% in the behavioral group (both P < 0.05).
The therapeutic effect of Acupuncture as a complementary medicine on insomnia is better than stimulus therapy as a Cognitive - Behavioral Therapy.
The COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins) project is a large international collaborative effort to analyze individual-level phenotype data from twins in multiple cohorts from different environments. The main objective is to study factors that modify genetic and environmental variation of height, body mass index (BMI, kg/m2) and size at birth, and additionally to address other research questions such as long-term consequences of birth size. The project started in 2013 and is open to all twin projects in the world having height and weight measures on twins with information on zygosity. Thus far, 54 twin projects from 24 countries have provided individual-level data. The CODATwins database includes 489,981 twin individuals (228,635 complete twin pairs). Since many twin cohorts have collected longitudinal data, there is a total of 1,049,785 height and weight observations. For many cohorts, we also have information on birth weight and length, own smoking behavior and own or parental education. We found that the heritability estimates of height and BMI systematically changed from infancy to old age. Remarkably, only minor differences in the heritability estimates were found across cultural–geographic regions, measurement time and birth cohort for height and BMI. In addition to genetic epidemiological studies, we looked at associations of height and BMI with education, birth weight and smoking status. Within-family analyses examined differences within same-sex and opposite-sex dizygotic twins in birth size and later development. The CODATwins project demonstrates the feasibility and value of international collaboration to address gene-by-exposure interactions that require large sample sizes and address the effects of different exposures across time, geographical regions and socioeconomic status.
Although application of organic fertilizers has become a recommended way for developing sustainable agriculture, it is still unclear whether above-ground and below-ground crops have similar responses to chemical fertilizers (CF) and organic manure (OM) under the same farming conditions. The current study investigated soil quality and crop yield response to fertilization of a double-cropping system with rapeseed (above-ground) and sweet potato (below-ground) in an infertile red soil for 2 years (2014–16). Three fertilizer treatments were compared, including CF, OM and organic manure plus chemical fertilizer (MCF). Organic fertilizers (OM and MCF) increased the yield of both above- and below-ground crops and improved soil biochemical properties significantly. The current study also found that soil-chemical properties were the most important and direct factors in increasing crop yields. Also, crop yield was affected indirectly by soil-biological properties, because no significant effects of soil-biological activities on yield were detected after controlling the positive effects of soil-chemical properties. Since organic fertilizers could not only increase crop yield, but also improve soil nutrients and microbial activities efficiently and continuously, OM application is a reliable agricultural practice for both above- and below-ground crops in the red soils of China.
We numerically study the impact of a compound drop on a hydrophobic substrate using a ternary-fluid diffuse-interface method, aiming to understand how the presence of the inner droplet affects the spreading dynamics and maximal spreading of the compound drop. First, it is interesting to see that the numerical results for an impacting pure drop agree well with the universal rescaling of maximal spreading ratio proposed by Lee et al. (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 786, 2016, R4). Second, two flow regimes have been identified for an impacting compound drop: namely jammed spreading and joint rim formation. The maximal spreading ratio of the compound drop is found to depend on the volume fraction of the inner droplet
, the surface tension ratio
, the Weber number and the flow regime. Moreover, we propose a universal rescaling of maximal spreading ratio for compound drops, by integrating the one for pure drops with a corrected Weber number that takes
and the flow regime into account. The predictions of the universal rescaling are in good agreement with the numerical results for impacting compound drops.
Litter size has a great impact on the profit of swine producers. Uterine development is an important determinant of reproduction efficiency and could hence affect litter size. Chinese Erhualian pig is one of the most prolific breeds in the world, even though large phenotypic variation in litter size was observed within Erhualian sows. To dissect the genetic basis of the phenotypic variation, we herein conducted genome-wide association studies for total number born and number born alive (NBA) of Erhualian sows. In total, one significant single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) (P<1.78e−06) and 11 suggestive SNPs (P<3.57e−05) were identified on 10 chromosomes, confirming seven previously reported quantitative trait loci (QTL) and uncovering six QTL for litter size or uterus length. One locus on Sus scrofa chromosome (SSC) 13 (79.28 to 90.43 Mb) harbored a cluster of suggestive SNPs associated with multiparous NBA. The SNP (rs81447100) within this region was confirmed to be significantly (P<0.05) associated with litter size in Erhualian (n=313), Sutai (n=173) and Yorkshire (n=488) populations. Retinol binding protein 2 and retinol binding protein 1 functionally related to the development of uterus were located in a region of 2 Mb around rs81447100. Moreover, four genes related to embryo implantation and development were also detected around other significant SNPs. Taken together, our findings provide a potential marker (rs81447100) for the genetic improvement of litter size not only in Chinese Erhualian pigs but also in European commercial pig breeds like Yorkshire, and would facilitate the final identification of causative variant(s) underlying the effect of SSC13 QTL on litter size.
It was reported that high blood cholesterol levels increased the susceptibility to mitochondrial dysfunction. This study hypothesized that the gestational hypercholesterolemia (HC) could induce the mitochondrial dysfunction in term human placenta. The eligible pregnant women were recruited from Xuanwu Hospital in Beijing during their first prenatal visit (before their 10th week of pregnancy). In total, 19 pregnant women whose serum total cholesterol levels were higher than 7.25 mm at third trimester (measured at 36–38 weeks) were selected as gestational HC. Other 19 pregnant women with normal cholesterol level matched with age, pre-gestational body mass index, and the neonatal gender were included as the control group. Full-term placenta samples were collected. The mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) copy number, messenger RNA (mRNA) expression of cytochrome c oxidase subunit I, adenosine triphosphate monophosphatase 6 (ATP6ase), citrate synthase, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ (PPARγ) co-activator 1α, PPARγ co-activator 1β and estrogen-related receptor-α, and the activity of mitochondrial respiratory chain enzyme complex were measured. Pregnancy outcomes were obtained by extraction from medical records and the labor ward register. The results showed that only placental mtDNA copy number and mRNA expression of ATP6ase were significantly decreased in HC group. No significant differences were detected of other measurements between the two groups. These findings indicated that gestational HC might not induce the damage of placental function seriously.
We investigate the cavity formation during the impact of spheres and cylinders into a liquid pool by using a combination of experiments, simulations and theoretical analysis, with particular interest in contact-line pinning and its relation with the subsequent cavity evolution. The flows are simulated by a Navier–Stokes diffuse-interface solver that allows for moving contact lines. On the basis of agreement on experimentally measured quantities such as the position of the pinned contact line and the interface shape, we investigate flow details that are not accessible experimentally, identify the interface regions in the cavity formation and examine the geometric effects of impact objects. We connect wettability, inertia, geometry of the impact object, interface bending and contact-line position with the contact-line pinning by analysing the force balance at a pinned meniscus, and the result compares favourably with those from simulations and experiments. In addition to adjusting the interface bending, the object geometry also has a significant effect on the magnitude of low pressure in the liquid and the occurrence of flow separation. As a result, it is easier for an object with sharp edges to generate a cavity than a smooth object. A theoretical model based on the Rayleigh–Besant equation is developed to provide a quantitative description of the radial expansion of the cavity after the pinning of the contact line. The accuracy of the solution is greatly affected by the geometrical information on the interface connected to the pinned meniscus, showing the dependence of the global cavity dynamics on the local flows around the pinned contact line. Vertical ripple propagation on the cavity wall is found to follow the dispersion relation for the perturbation evolution on a hollow jet.
The detection of single molecular binding events has been a recent trend in sensor research introducing various sensor designs where the active sensing elements are nanoscopic in size. Currently, diffusion-only-transport is often used and it becomes increasingly unlikely for an analyte molecule to “find” and interact with sensing structures where the active area is shrunk in size, trading an increased sensitivity with a long response time. This report introduces electrodynamic nanolens based analyte concentration concepts to transport airborne analytes to nanoscopic sensing points to improve the response time of existing gas sensor designs. In all cases we find that the collection rate is several orders of magnitudes higher than in the case where the collection is driven by diffusion.
Radiation-tolerant materials, sensors and electronics can enable lightweight space subsystems with reduced packaging requirements and increased operation lifetimes. Such technology can be used within extreme harsh environments related to space exploration, radiation medicine and power generation (combustion and nuclear). Gallium nitride (GaN), a ceramic semiconductor material, is a candidate material due to its stability within high-radiation, high-temperature and chemically corrosive environments. In addition, the wide bandgap of GaN (3.4 eV) can be leveraged for ultraviolet (UV) wavelength photodetection. In metal-semiconductor-metal (MSM) photodetector architectures using Schottky contacts, transparent electrodes (e.g., graphene) can increase sensitivity and improve overall device response. Here we present fabrication and characterization of GaN-based UV photodetectors using graphene electrodes irradiated up to 200 krad total ionizing dose (TID) then tested under UV light and dark conditions. For current-voltage measurements taken at 90, 120 and 200 krad TID, the current-voltage response does not vary significantly. From 90 to 120 krad TID, the responsivity shifts by 2% before dropping off at 200 krad TID. These initial findings suggest that graphene/GaN MSM UV photodetectors can provide robust operation within extreme harsh environments.
ZrO2/Ge is potential high-k dielectric candidate to replace silicon based devices. Controlling stress in zirconia film and stabilizing high dielectric constant phase is crucial for high-k application. A precise control of stress and phase selectivity in high-k thin films is demonstrated. Thin films of ZrO2 were grown by reactive sputter deposition. Wide range of growth stress in thin films from -0.3 to -2.8 GPa can be tuned by growth rate control. Adatom incorporation into grain boundary was the dominant source of observed stress. Phase selectivity in zirconia was achieved by tuning growth parameters.
Stable, electrically conductive, thin film materials are key components for high temperature sensors operating in harsh environments. In this work, nanocomposite Pt-Zr-B and Pt-Si thin film materials were grown to a nominal thickness of 200 nm on both r-cut sapphire (α-Al2O3) substrates using e-beam evaporation, and their structure, morphology, and chemical composition was characterized following thermal treatments in an air laboratory furnace up to 1300°C. In the Pt-Zr-B system, oxidation of a nanolaminate architecture consisting of ZrB2 and pure Pt layers leads to boron oxide evaporation and the formation of Pt grains decorated by tetragonal-ZrO2 nanocrystallites at high temperature. Electrical conductivity measurements with a 4-point probe show that this nanocomposite film structure can maintain a film conductivity > 1x106 S/m up to 1300°C, depending on the Pt/ZrB2 layer thickness ratio. In the Pt-Si system, film compositions were varied to yield either nanocrystalline Pt3Si, Pt2Si, or PtSi phases depending on the Pt-Si ratio, or an amorphous phase at high Si content. Above 1000°C in air, Pt-oxide and Si-oxide phases form and coexist with the Pt-Si phases, and some Pt-Si film conductivities remain as high as 1x106 S/m after annealing at 1000°C for 6 hours. It was found that a 100 nm thick amorphous alumina capping layer grown by atomic layer deposition (ALD) aids in limiting film oxidation, but film stress leads to regions of delamination.
This work investigates the effects of concentration of organothiol molecules and temperature used during self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) formation on quality of the organothiol SAMs coating layer obtained in terms of wettability, corrosion inhibition efficiency and carbon to copper ratio. The organothiol SAMs were coated on copper substrates prepared by electro-polishing followed by oxygen plasma treatment for 15 s. Three types of organothiol SAMs including 1-octanethiol (OTT), 2-ethylhexanethiol (2-EHT) and 2-phenylethanethiol (2-PET) were investigated. Concentration of organothiol molecules ranging from 0.005 to 0.02 M in isopropanol and forming temperature ranging from -15 to 50°C were studied. It was found that all organothiol SAMs of 0.01 M provided the SAMs coating layer with the highest quality. The SAMs formed at 40°C with OTT and 2-EHT, and at 0°C with 2-PET were the most favorable condition with the highest water contact angle of 124.79o, 130.66o and 120.58o at corrosion inhibition efficiencies of 96.24%, 99.37% and 98.90%, respectively.
The first human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus was reported in Shanghai, China in March 2013. An additional 32 cases of human H7N9 infection were identified in the following months from March to April 2013 in Shanghai. Here we conducted a case-control study of the patients with H7N9 infection (n = 25) using controls matched by age, sex, and residence to determine risk factors for H7N9 infection. Our findings suggest that chronic disease and frequency of visiting a live poultry market (>10 times, or 1–9 times during the 2 weeks before illness onset) were likely to be significantly associated with H7N9 infection, with the odds ratios being 4·07 [95% confidence interval (CI) 1·32–12·56], 10·61 (95% CI 1·85–60·74), and 3·76 (95% CI 1·31–10·79), respectively. Effective strategies for live poultry market control should be reinforced and ongoing education of the public is warranted to promote behavioural changes that can help to eliminate direct or indirect contact with influenza A(H7N9) virus.
Fertilizer application can play an important role in soil organic carbon (SOC) retention and dynamics. The mechanisms underlying long-term accumulation and protection of SOC in intensive maize cropping systems, however, have not been well documented for cool high-latitude rainfed areas. Based on a 23-year fertilization experiment under a continuous maize cropping system at Gongzhuling, Jilin Province, China, the effects of fertilization regimes on SOC content and soil aggregate-associated carbon (C) composition were investigated. Results showed that, within the 0–1·0 m soil profile, SOC contents decreased significantly with soil depth in all treatments. In the topsoil layer (0–0·2 m), SOC concentrations in balanced inorganic fertilizers plus farmyard manure (MNPK), fallow system (FAL) and balanced inorganic fertilizers plus maize straw residue (SNPK) treatments were significantly greater than initial levels by 61·0, 34·1 and 20·1%, respectively. The MNPK and SNPK treatments increased SOC content by 50·7 and 12·4% compared to the unfertilized control in the topsoil layer, whereas no significant differences were found between balanced inorganic nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium fertilizers (NPK) and the unfertilized control treatment. There were no significant differences in aggregate-size distribution among the unfertilized control, NPK and MNPK treatments, whereas the SNPK treatment significantly enhanced the formation of micro-aggregates (53–250 μm) and decreased the formation of silt+clay aggregates (<53 μm) compared to the unfertilized control, NPK and MNPK treatments. Moreover, SOC concentrations in all aggregate fractions in the MNPK treatment were the highest among treatments. Furthermore, the MNPK treatment significantly increased SOC stock in micro- and silt+clay aggregates, which may slow down C decomposition in the soil. These results indicate that long-term manure amendment can benefit SOC sequestration and stability in the black soil of Northeast China.
The MIAMI* facility at the University of Huddersfield is one of a number of facilities worldwide that permit the ion irradiation of thin foils in-situ in a transmission electron microscope. MIAMI has been developed with a particular focus on enabling the in-situ implantation of helium and hydrogen into thin electron transparent foils, necessitating ion energies in the range 1 – 10 keV. In addition, however, ions of a variety of species can be provided at energies of up to 100 keV (for singly charged ions), enabling studies to focus on the build up of radiation damage in the absence or presence of implanted gas.
This paper reports on a number of ongoing studies being carried out at MIAMI, and also at JANNuS (Orsay, France) and the IVEM / Ion Accelerator Facility (Argonne National Lab, US). This includes recent work on He bubbles in SiC and Cu; the former work concerned with modification to bubble populations by ion and electron beams and the latter project concerned with the formation of bubble super-lattices in metals.
A study is also presented consisting of experiments aimed at shedding light on the origins of the dimensional changes known to occur in nuclear graphite under irradiation with either neutrons or ions. Single crystal graphite foils have been irradiated with 60 keV Xe ions in order to create a non-uniform damage profile throughout the foil thickness. This gives rise to varying basal-plane contraction throughout the foil resulting in almost macroscopic (micron scale) deformation of the graphite. These observations are presented and discussed with a view to reconciling them with current understanding of point defect behavior in graphite.
*Microscope and Ion Accelerator for Materials Investigations
The kinetic/thermodynamic stabilization recent results of grain growth in nanomaterials (NMs)-based metals, alloys, and compounds are generalized. Due to their large share of interfaces which can act as the sinks for radiation defects, NMs show improved irradiation resistance such as the resistance to amorphization, hardening and swelling. Radiation defects will tend also to the nanostructure annihilation and transformation into amorphous state. Some unsolved problems are emphasized.
A novel atom probe tomography (APT) method has been developed that enables a full description of the orientation relationship between individual grains to be determined together with estimates of the extents of solute segregation for all elements over the surface of the grain boundary with 1 nm by 1 nm spatial resolution. This approach also enables variations in the solute excess for the elements with the habit plane and curvature of the grain boundary to be evaluated. The method has been applied to a mechanically-alloyed nanostructured ferritic alloy (NFA) after high dose heavy ion irradiation. The innovative high-resolution two-dimensional mapping of the solute segregation across the surface of grain boundaries in the NFA clearly demonstrates that the distributions of chromium and tungsten are not uniform across the grain boundaries, and the distributions correlate with changes in its local curvature and the position of the grain boundary precipitates. These features pin the grain boundary against grain growth and provide the stability for excellent creep properties.