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We examined whether breakfast frequency was associated with chronic inflammatory, as assessed by high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (CRP) concentration.
Kailuan community, China.
Included were 70 092 Chinese adults without CVD and cancer in 2014 with CRP concentrations <10 mg/l, when breakfast frequency was assessed via a questionnaire, and plasma CRP concentration was measured.
Breakfast frequency was associated with CRP concentration (P-trend < 0·001). The adjusted mean CRP was 1·33 mg/l (95 % CI 1·23, 1·44) for the ‘no breakfast’ group and 1·07 mg/l (95 % CI 1·0, 1·14) for the ‘breakfast everyday’ group (P-difference < 0·001), adjusting for age, sex, diet quality, total energy, obesity, education, occupation, marital status, smoking, alcohol consumption, blood pressure, sleep parameters, fasting blood glucose and lipid profiles. Consistently, the adjusted OR for CRP ≥ 1·0 mg/l and CRP ≥ 3·0 mg/l were 1·86 (95 % CI 1·73, 2·00) and 1·27 (95 % CI 1·15, 1·40), respectively, when comparing these two breakfast consumption groups (P-trend < 0·001 for both). The associations were more pronounced among older adults, relative to those who were younger (P-interaction < 0·001). Significant association between breakfast skipping and elevated CRP concentration was observed in those with poor diet quality, but not those with good diet quality.
Habitually skipping breakfast was associated with elevated concentrations of CRP. Future prospective studies including repeated assessment of inflammatory biomarkers and a collection of detailed information on type and amount of breakfast foods are warranted.
The link between schizophrenia and cigarette smoking has been well established through observational studies. However, the cause–effect relationship remains unclear.
We conducted Mendelian randomisation analyses to assess any causal relationship between genetic variants related to four smoking-related traits and the risk of schizophrenia.
We performed a two-sample Mendelian randomisation using summary statistics from genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of smoking-related traits and schizophrenia (7711 cases, 18 327 controls) in East Asian populations. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) correlated with smoking behaviours (smoking initiation, smoking cessation, age at smoking initiation and quantity of smoking) were investigated in relation to schizophrenia using the inverse-variance weighted (IVW) method. Further sensitivity analyses, including Mendelian randomisation-Egger (MR-Egger), weighted median estimates and leave-one-out analysis, were used to test the consistency of the results.
The associated SNPs for the four smoking behaviours were not significantly associated with schizophrenia status. Pleiotropy did not inappropriately affect the results.
Cigarette smoking is a complex behaviour in people with schizophrenia. Understanding factors underlying the observed association remains important; however, our findings do not support a causal role of smoking in influencing risk of schizophrenia.
This numerical study focuses on the coherent structures and bypass transition mechanism of the Stokes boundary layer in the intermittently turbulent regime. In particular, the initial disturbance is produced by a temporary roughness element that is removed immediately after triggering a two-dimensional vortex tube under an inflection-point instability. The present study reveals a complete scenario of self-induced motion of a vortex tube after rollup from the boundary layer. The trajectory of the vortex tube is reasonably described based on the Helmholtz point-vortex equation. The three-dimensional transition of the vortex tube is attributed to the Crow instability, which leads to a sinusoidal disturbance that eventually evolves into a ring-like structure, especially for the weaker vortex. Further investigation demonstrates that three-dimensional or quasi-three-dimensional vortex perturbations in the free stream play a critical role in the boundary layer transition through a bypass mechanism, which is featured by the non-modal and explosive transient growth of the subsequent boundary layer instabilities. This transition scenario is found to be analogous to the oblique transition in the steady boundary layer, both of which are characterised by the formation of streaks, rollup of hairpin-like vortices and burst into turbulent spots. In addition, the streamwise propagation of turbulent spots is discussed in detail. To shed more light on the nature of the intermittently turbulent Stokes boundary layer, a conceptual model is proposed for the periodically self-sustaining mechanism of the turbulent spots based on the present numerical results and experimental evidence reported in the literature.
It is known that the Fourier–Stieltjes coefficients of a nonatomic coin-tossing measure may not vanish at infinity. However, we show that they could vanish at infinity along some integer subsequences, including the sequence
is multiplicatively independent of 2 and the sequence given by the multiplicative semigroup generated by 3 and 5. The proof is based on elementary combinatorics and lower-bound estimates for linear forms in logarithms from transcendental number theory.
Primary liver cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide. Most patients are diagnosed at late stages with poor prognosis; thus, identification of modifiable risk factors for primary prevention of liver cancer is urgently needed. The well-established risk factors of liver cancer include chronic infection with hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV), heavy alcohol consumption, metabolic diseases such as obesity and diabetes, and aflatoxin exposure. However, a large proportion of cancer cases worldwide cannot be explained by current known risk factors. Dietary factors have been suspected as important, but dietary aetiology of liver cancer remains poorly understood. In this review, we summarised and evaluated the observational studies of diet including single nutrients, food and food groups, as well as dietary patterns with the risk of developing liver cancer. Although there are large knowledge gaps between diet and liver cancer risk, current epidemiological evidence supports an important role of diet in liver cancer development. For example, exposure to aflatoxin, heavy alcohol drinking and possibly dairy product (not including yogurt) intake increase, while intake of coffee, fish and tea, light-to-moderate alcohol drinking and several healthy dietary patterns (e.g. Alternative Healthy Eating Index) may decrease liver cancer risk. Future studies with large sample size and accurate diet measurement are warranted and need to consider issues such as the possible aetiological heterogeneity between liver cancer subtypes, the influence of chronic HBV or HCV infection, the high-risk populations (e.g. cirrhosis) and a potential interplay with host gut microbiota or genetic variations.
This study examines the relationship between filial piety (adult children's filial behaviours and attitudes as well as elderly mothers’ overall evaluation of children's filial piety) and elderly mothers’ reports of intergenerational ambivalence (positive feelings, negative feelings and combined ambivalence) in rural China. We analysed the data from a survey in 2016 covering 2,203 adult children and 802 elderly mothers in Sichuan Province using a two-level mixed-effects modelling analysis. The results indicate that most components of filial piety are associated with mothers’ ambivalence, in that less ambivalence was reported by mothers when their adult children provided more emotional support to, had less conflict with and were evaluated as more filial by their mothers. Interestingly, mothers demonstrated greater positive feelings when their children were more filial in behaviour and attitude, but they also reported greater negative feelings and ambivalence when their children were more obedient, implying that absolute obedience to elderly parents might no longer be accepted by people. These findings may provide further understanding about the correlation between the culture of filial piety and intergenerational relationships in rural China.
Information on sea ice type is an important factor for deriving sea ice parameters from satellite remote sensing data, such as sea ice concentration, extent and thickness. In this study, sea ice in the Weddell Sea was classified by the histogram threshold (HT) method, the Spreen model (SM) method from satellite scatterometer data and the strong contrast (SC) method from radiometer data, and this information was compared with Antarctic Sea Ice Processes and Climate (ASPeCt) sea ice-type ship-based observations. The results show that all three methods can distinguish the multi-year (MY) ice and first-year (FY) ice using Ku-band scatterometer data and radiometer data during the ice growth season, while C-band scatterometer data are not suitable for MY ice and FY ice discrimination using HT and SM methods. The SM model has a smaller MY ice classification extent than the HT method from scatterometer data. The classification accuracy of the SM method is the higher compared to ship-based observations. It can be concluded that the SM method is a promising method for discriminating MY ice from FY ice. These results provide a reference for further retrieval of long-term sea ice-type information for the whole of Antarctica.
CrFeNiTix (x = 0.2, 0.3, 0.4, 0.5, and 0.6 molar ratio) compositionally complex alloys were fabricated by vacuum arc melting to investigate the microstructure, hardness, and compressive properties. The results revealed that CrFeNiTix alloys consisted of the principal face-centered cubic (FCC) phase and body-centered cubic (BCC) solid solution, with an amount of (Ni, Ti)-rich hexagonal close-packed phase. CrFeNiTix alloys exhibited the typical dendrite. Ti0.2 and Ti0.3 alloys were composed of FCC and BCC solid solutions in the dendrite, as well as ε (Ni3Ti) and R (Ni2.67Ti1.33) phases in the inter-dendrite, simultaneously. For Ti0.4, Ti0.5, and Ti0.6 alloys, (Fe, Cr)-rich solid solution separated out and ε phase transformed into R phase gradually. Meanwhile, TEM analysis indicated that Ti0.4 alloy matrix consisted of the principal FCC phase containing (Ni, Ti)-rich intragranular nanoprecipitates. The hardness values of CrFeNiTix alloys were increased with the addition of Ti content and the high compressive strength of CrFeNiTix alloys was maintained, which was attributed to the solid solution strengthening and precipitation hardening.
A band-stop angular filter (BSF) based on hump volume Bragg gratings (HVBGs) is proposed. Band-stop filtering in a two-stage amplifier laser system is discussed and simulated. Simulation results show that small-scale self-focusing effects in the laser system can be effectively suppressed with the BSF due to the control of fast nonlinear growth in a specific range of spatial frequencies in the laser beam. Near-field modulation of the output beam from the laser system was decreased from 2.69 to 1.37 by controlling the fast nonlinear growth of spatial frequencies ranging from
with the BSF. In addition, the BSF can be used in a plug-and-play scheme and has potential applications in high-power laser systems.
FM-to-AM conversion for angular filtering based on transmitted volume Bragg gratings (TBGs) is discussed. Simulation results show that a narrower spectral selectivity of TBGs led to stronger FM-to-AM conversion. Good angular selectivity and a wide bandwidth for the TBGs can be obtained by controlling the grating period and thickness. FM-to-AM conversion can be effectively suppressed and the distortion criterion for the filtered beam reduces to less than 5%. FM-to-AM conversion of TBGs is demonstrated in the ‘Shenguang’ facility, and the results are in good agreement with the simulation.
The output performances of a bidirectional ring amplifier with twin pulses are demonstrated. Compared to the extraction efficiency of 32% for single-pulse injection, the extraction efficiency of stored energy for twin-pulse injection with bidirectional propagation is increased to 60%. The maximum output energies of the twin pulses are 347 mJ and 351 mJ, and the output energy of a single pulse is only 373 mJ under the same amplifier operating conditions. The experimental results show that the bidirectional ring amplifier with twin pulses can achieve a higher extraction efficiency of stored energy at a lower operating fluence, and has potential applications in high-power and high-energy laser facilities.
Voice conversion aims to change a source speaker's voice to make it sound like the one of a target speaker while preserving linguistic information. Despite the rapid advance of voice conversion algorithms in the last decade, most of them are still too complicated to be accessible to the public. With the popularity of mobile devices especially smart phones, mobile voice conversion applications are highly desirable such that everyone can enjoy the pleasure of high-quality voice mimicry and people with speech disorders can also potentially benefit from it. Due to the limited computing resources on mobile phones, the major concern is the time efficiency of such a mobile application to guarantee positive user experience. In this paper, we detail the development of a mobile voice conversion system based on the Gaussian mixture model (GMM) and the weighted frequency warping methods. We attempt to boost the computational efficiency by making the best of hardware characteristics of today's mobile phones, such as parallel computing on multiple cores and the advanced vectorization support. Experimental evaluation results indicate that our system can achieve acceptable voice conversion performance while the conversion time for a five-second sentence only takes slightly more than one second on iPhone 7.
High Reynolds number wall-bounded turbulent flows subject to buoyancy forces are fraught with complex dynamics originating from the interplay between shear generation of turbulence (
) and its production or destruction by density gradients (
). For horizontal walls,
augments the energy budget of the streamwise fluctuations, while
influences the energy contained in the vertical fluctuations. Yet, return to isotropy remains a tendency of such flows where pressure–strain interaction redistributes turbulent energy among all three velocity components and thus limits, but cannot fully eliminate, the anisotropy of the velocity fluctuations. A reduced model of this energy redistribution in the inertial (logarithmic) sublayer, with no tuneable constants, is introduced and tested against large eddy and direct numerical simulations under both stable (
) and unstable (
) conditions. The model links key transitions in turbulence statistics with flux Richardson number (at
) to shifts in the direction of energy redistribution. Furthermore, when coupled to a linear Rotta-type closure, an extended version of the model can predict individual variance components, as well as the degree of turbulence anisotropy. The extended model indicates a regime transition under stable conditions when
. Buoyant destruction
increases with increasing stabilizing density gradients when
, while at
limitations on the redistribution into the vertical component throttle the highest attainable rate of buoyant destruction, explaining the ‘self-preservation’ of turbulence at large positive gradient Richardson numbers. Despite adopting a ‘framework of maximum simplicity’, the model results in novel and insightful findings on how the interacting roles of energy redistribution and buoyancy modulate the variance budgets and the energy exchange among the components.
Plasma levels of very-long-chain SFA (VLCSFA) are associated with the metabolic syndrome (MetS). However, the associations may vary by different biological activities of individual VLCSFA or population characteristics. We aimed to examine the associations of VLCSFA and MetS risk in Chinese adults. Totally, 2008 Chinese population aged 35–59 years were recruited and followed up from 2010 to 2012. Baseline MetS status and plasma fatty acids data were available for 1729 individuals without serious diseases. Among 899 initially metabolically healthy individuals, we identified 212 incident MetS during the follow-up. Logistic regression analysis was used to estimate OR and 95 % CI. Cross-sectionally, each VLCSFA was inversely associated with MetS risk; comparing with the lowest quartile, the multivariate-adjusted OR for the highest quartile were 0·18 (95 % CI 0·13, 0·25) for C20 : 0, 0·26 (95 % CI 0·18, 0·35) for C22 : 0, 0·19 (95 % CI 0·13, 0·26) for C24 : 0 and 0·16 (0·11, 0·22) for total VLCSFA (all Pfor trend<0·001). The associations remained significant after further adjusting for C16 : 0, C18 : 0, C18 : 3n-3, C22 : 6n-3, n-6 PUFA and MUFA, respectively. Based on follow-up data, C20 : 0 or C22 : 0 was also inversely associated with incident MetS risk. Among the five individual MetS components, higher levels of VLCSFA were most strongly inversely associated with elevated TAG (≥1·7 mmol/l). Plasma levels of VLCSFA were significantly and inversely associated with MetS risk and individual MetS components, especially TAG. Further studies are warranted to confirm the findings and explore underlying mechanisms.
Fingerprint-based indoor localisation suffers from influences such as fingerprint pre-collection, environment changes and expending a lot of manpower and time to update the radio map. To solve the problem, we propose an efficient radio map updating algorithm based on K-Means and Gaussian Process Regression (KMGPR). The algorithm builds a Gaussian Process Regression (GPR) predictive model based on a Gaussian mean function and realises the update of the radio map using K-Means. We have conducted experiments to evaluate the performance of the proposed algorithm and results show that GPR using the Gaussian mean function improves localisation accuracy by about 13·76% compared with other functions and KMGPR can reduce the computational complexity by about 7% to 20% with no obvious effects on accuracy.
Diabetic nephropathy (DN) is a major cause of chronic kidney disease. We aimed to investigate the effect of the low-protein diets (LPD) supplemented with ketoacids (LPD+KA) in KKAy mice, an early type 2 DN model. KKAy mice were treated with normal protein diet (NPD), LPD or LPD+KA from 12 to 24 weeks of age. A period of 12-week treatment with LPD significantly reduced albuminuria as compared with that observed after NPD treatment. Treatment with LPD+KA further reduced albuminuria as compared with that observed with LPD treatment alone. Moreover, LPD treatment reduced mesangial expansion, thickness of glomerular basement membrane and the severity of the podocyte foot process effacement in KKAy mice; these effects were more pronounced in KKAy mice treated with LPD+KA. Both LPD and LPD+KA treatments slightly reduced total body weight, but had no significant effect on kidney weight and blood glucose concentrations when compared with NPD-treated KKAy mice. LPD treatment slightly attenuated oxidative stress in kidneys as compared with that observed in NPD-treated KKAy mice; however, LPD+KA treatment remarkably ameliorated oxidative stress in diabetic kidneys as shown by decreased malondialdehyde concentrations, protein carbonylation, nitrotyrosine expression and increased superoxide dismutase expression. Nutritional therapy using LPD+KA confers additional renal benefits as compared with those of LPD treatment alone in early type 2 DN through inhibition of oxidative stress.
Nanostructured cerium oxide (CeO2) with outstanding physical and chemical properties has attracted extensive interests over the past few decades in environment and energy-related applications. With controllable synthesis of nanostructured CeO2, much more features were technologically brought out from defect chemistry to structure-derived effects. This review highlights recent progress on the synthesis and characterization of nanostructured ceria-based materials as well as the traditional and new applications. Specifically, several typical applications based on the desired ceria nanostructures are focused to showcase the importance of nanostructure-derived effects. Moreover, some challenges and perspectives on the nanostructured ceria are presented, such as defects controlling and retainment, scale-up fabrication, and monolithic devices. Hopefully, this review can provide an improved understanding of nanostructured CeO2 and offer new opportunities to promote the further research and applications in the future.