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Laser interaction with an ultra-thin pre-structured target is investigated with the help of both two-dimensional and three-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations. With the existence of a periodic structure on the target surface, the laser seems to penetrate through the target at its fundamental frequency even if the plasma density of the target is much higher than the laser’s relativistically critical density. The particle-in-cell simulations show that the transmitted laser energy behind the pre-structured target is increased by about two orders of magnitude compared to that behind the flat target. Theoretical analyses show that the transmitted energy behind the pre-structured target is actually re-emitted by electron ‘islands’ formed by the surface plasma waves on the target surfaces. In other words, the radiation with the fundamental frequency is actually ‘surface emission’ on the target rear surface. Besides the intensity of the component with the fundamental frequency, the intensity of the high-order harmonics behind the pre-structured target is also much enhanced compared to that behind the flat target. The enhancement of the high-order harmonics is also related to the surface plasma waves generated on the target surfaces.
Optimizing the dietary calcium (Ca) level is essential to maximize the eggshell quality, egg production and bone formation in poultry. This study aimed to establish the Ca requirements of egg-type duck breeders from 23 to 57 weeks of age on egg production, eggshell, incubation, tibial, plasma and ovary-related indices, as well as the expression of matrix protein-related genes. Totally, 450 Longyan duck breeders aged 21 weeks of age were allotted randomly into five treatments, each with six replicates of 15 individually caged birds. The data collection started from 23 weeks of age and continued over the following 35 weeks. The five groups corresponded to five dietary treatments containing either 2.8%, 3.2%, 3.6%, 4.0% or 4.4% Ca. The tested dietary Ca levels increased (linear, P <0.01) egg production and egg mass, and linearly improved (P <0.01) the feed conversion ratio (FCR). Increasing the dietary Ca levels from 2.8% to 4.4% increased (P <0.01) the eggshell thickness and eggshell content. The tested Ca levels showed a quadratic effect on eggshell thickness and ovarian weight (P <0.01); the highest values were obtained with the Ca levels 4.0% and 3.6%, respectively. Dietary Ca levels affected the small yellow follicles (SYF) number and SYF weight/ovarian weight, and the linear response (P <0.01) was significant vis-à-vis SYF number. In addition, dietary Ca levels increased (P <0.05) the tibial dry weight, breaking strength, mineral density and ash content. Plasma and tibial phosphorus concentration exhibited a quadratic (P <0.01) response to dietary Ca levels. Plasma calcitonin concentration linearly (P <0.01) increased as dietary Ca levels increased. The relative expression of carbonic anhydrase 2 in the uterus rose (P <0.01) with the increment of dietary Ca levels, and the highest value was obtained with 3.2% Ca. In conclusion, Longyan duck breeders fed a diet with 4.0% Ca had superior eggshell and tibial quality, while those fed a diet with 3.6% Ca had the heaviest ovarian weights. The regression model indicated that the dietary Ca levels 3.86%, 3.48% and 4.00% are optimal levels to obtain maximum eggshell thickness, ovarian weight and tibial mineral density, respectively.
The Weihe Basin is an intracontinental rift basin in central China that provides an ideal location for studying the interactions between regional tectonics and monsoonal climate change. In this paper, we present detrital zircon U–Pb ages from sediments from Core LYH drilled in the northern margin of the basin. We use these to illuminate changing sediment transport processes, provenance and palaeo-environments during the Quaternary. The sediments are dominated by zircon age groups of 100–400 Ma and 400–550 Ma, and three secondary age peaks at 700–1100 Ma, 1700–2100 Ma and 2400–2600 Ma. Multidimensional scaling plots support the conclusion that the Central Loess Plateau and the Luo River are the dominant sources of sediments to the core site. Before c. 1.06 Ma, the Qinling Mountains and the Wei River, as well as the Yellow River, had minor influence on the sedimentation at the core site. These results are consistent with the existence of a palaeolake prior to 1.06 Ma, which allowed sediments supplied to the south and east edge of the basin to be reworked to the northern side of the Weihe Basin. Subsequently, the Luo River has provided a steady source of sediments to the northern Weihe Basin.
The study investigated whether different dietary energy and protein sources affect laying performance, antioxidant status, fresh yolk fatty acid profile and quality of salted yolks in laying ducks. In all, 360 19-week-old Longyan ducks were randomly assigned to four diets in a factorial arrangement (2×2). The four diets consisted of two energy sources, corn (CO) or sorghum (SO) and two protein sources, soybean meal (SM) and rapeseed meal with corn distillers dried grains with solubles (RMD), and each treatment contained six replicates of 15 birds each. The experimental diets were isocaloric (metabolizable energy, 10.84 MJ/kg) and isonitrogenous (CP, 17%). The results showed that egg production, average egg weight, egg mass and feed conversion ratio were not affected by diets (P>0.05). Plasma contents of reduced glutathione (GSH), GSH/oxidized glutathione and total antioxidant capacity were lower (P<0.05) in ducks fed the RMD diets compared with those fed SM diets with a substantial increase (P=0.006) in plasma content of malondialdehyde (MDA). Egg yolks from ducks fed SO diets had higher proportions of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) and lower saturated and monounsaturated fatty acids compared with CO diets (P<0.001). Similarly, ducks fed RMD diets had a higher content of PUFA and n-6/n-3 ratio in fresh yolks (P<0.001), and increased salted yolk MDA, carbonylated proteins content and incidence of hard salted yolks (P<0.05) compared with SM diets. Scanning electron microscopy showed that salted yolks contained rougher polyhedral granules and fewer fat droplets, and were surrounded with a layer of bunchy fibers in ducks fed SO+RMD than those fed CO+SM diet. In conclusion, the current study showed that feeding laying ducks with diets containing SO or RMD reduced antioxidant capacity and increased egg yolk concentrations of PUFA. It appeared that egg yolks from ducks fed these diets were more sensitive to lipid peroxidation and protein oxidation during salting, and reduced the quality of salted yolks.
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is one of the leading causes of death and morbidity associated with liver disease. Risk factors identified for the transmission of HCV include contaminated blood products, intravenous drug use, body piercing, an infected mother at birth, sexual activity, and dental therapy, among others. However, the exact diversity of the HCV genotype and genetic variation among patients with low-risk factors is still unknown. In this study, we briefly described and analysed the genotype distribution and genetic variation of HCV infections with low-risk factors using molecular biology techniques. The results suggested that genotype 1b was predominant, followed by genotypes 2a and 1a. Genetic variations in the 5′ UTR sequences of HCV were identified, including point mutations, deletions, and insertions. The frequency of genetic variations in 1b was higher than in 2a. This study provides considerable value for the prevention and treatment of liver disease caused by HCV among patients with low-risk factors and for the development of HCV diagnostic reagents and vaccines.
A liquid chromatography mass spectrometry method for determination of clothianidin in brown rice, straw, rice hull, paddy water and paddy sediment was developed and residue levels were determined in the different components. The limit of quantification was set at 0·01 mg/kg for the matrices studied. Clothianidin degradation in straw, paddy water and soil was studied, and clothianidin residues in brown rice, straw, hull and paddy soil were determined. Concurrent recoveries were between 85·6 and 92·5%, with relative standard deviations ranging from 1·3 to 6·8% at three fortification levels between 0·01 and 5·0 mg/kg. The half-lives in straw, paddy water and paddy sediment were found to be 1·9–4·9, 4·1–5·0 and 4·9–6·3 days, respectively. The maximum residues in brown rice, straw, hull and paddy soil samples were 0·38, 1·88, 1·38 and 0·14 mg/kg, respectively.
Cytochrome P450s (CYPs or P450s) have been long recognized as very important enzymes in the metabolism of xenobiotic and endogenous compounds, but only a few CYPs have been functionally characterized in insects. The effort in functional characterization of insect P450s is heavily hindered by technical difficulties in preparing active, individual P450 enzymes directly from the target insect. In this paper, we describe the functional expression of two additional pyrethroid resistance-associated CYP9A genes (CYP9A12 and CYP9A17) from the polyphagous pest Helicoverpa armigera in the facile Escherichia coli. The functionality of E. coli produced CYP9A12, CYP9A14, and CYP9A17 was investigated and activities of these CYP9As were compared against three probe substrates after reconstitution with NADPH-dependent cytochrome P450 reductase. The results showed that active forms of CYP9A12 and CYP9A17 were expressed in E. coli with a content of about 1.0–1.5 nmol mg−1 protein in membrane preparations. In vitro assays showed that CYP9A14 was capable of catalyzing O-dealkylation of methoxyresorufin (MROD), ethoxyresorufin (EROD), and benzyloxyresorufin (BROD), while CYP9A12 and CYP9A17 exhibited only MROD and EROD activities. Kinetic studies demonstrated that CYP9A14 had the greatest kcat/Km value for MROD, and CYP9A17 for EROD, while the lowest kcat/Km values for both MROD and EROD were observed for CYP9A12. The distinct biochemical traits suggest that the three paralogous CYP9As may play different roles in xenobiotic metabolism in this important pest.
Dysfunction of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) is involved in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) was conducted to examine the efficacy and safety of memantine, a non-competitive NMDAR antagonist, in the treatment of schizophrenia.
Standardized/weighted mean differences (SMDs/WMDs), risk ratio (RR), and their 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated and analyzed.
Included in the meta-analysis were eight RCTs (n = 452) of 11.5 ± 2.6 weeks duration, with 229 patients on memantine (20 mg/day) and 223 patients on placebo. Adjunctive memantine outperformed placebo in the measures of Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale and Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale negative symptoms [SMD: −0.63 (95% CI −1.10 to −0.16), p = 0.009, I2 = 77%], but not in the total, positive and general symptoms [SMD: −0.46 to −0.08 (95% CI −0.93 to 0.22), p = 0.06–0.60, I2 = 0–74%] or the Clinical Global Impression Severity Scale [WMD: 0.04 (95% CI −0.24 to 0.32), p = 0.78]. The negative symptoms remained significant after excluding one outlying RCT [SMD: −0.41 (95% CI −0.72 to −0.11), p = 0.008, I2 = 47%]. Compared with the placebo group, adjunctive memantine was associated with significant improvement in neurocognitive function using the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) [WMD: 3.09, (95% CI 1.77–4.42), p < 0.00001, I2 = 22%]. There was no significant difference in the discontinuation rate [RR: 1.34 (95% CI 0.76–2.37), p = 0.31, I2 = 0%] and adverse drug reactions between the two groups.
This meta-analysis showed that adjunctive memantine appears to be an efficacious and safe treatment for improving negative symptoms and neurocognitive performance in schizophrenia. Higher quality RCTs with larger samples are warranted to confirm these findings.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of small non-coding RNAs that negatively regulate gene expression of target messenger RNAs (mRNAs) and miRNAs have been proven to play vital roles in skeletal muscle development. The miRNA-499-5p has been reported to be negatively related with the expression of Sox6, a critical transcription factor for the maintenance of fast-twitch skeletal muscle. In this study, we amplified a length of 2012-bp mRNA that contains a 1512-bp porcine Sox6 (pSox6) 3'UTR from skeletal muscle of a Duroc×Landrace×Yorkshire pig. By luciferase reporter assay we verified that pSox6 is a target of miR-499-5p. In extensor digitorum longus and Soleus muscles of pigs, the expression levels of miR-499-5p and pSox6 mRNA were also inversely correlated. Besides, overexpression of miR-499-5p in porcine satellite cells promoted the expression of MyHC I and MyHC IIa mRNA, along with a reduction of pSox6 mRNA. Taken together, these results indicate that miR-499-5p may facilitate the oxidative myofibers formation by downregulating pSox6 expression.
Worldwide 350 million people suffer from major depression, with the majority of cases occurring in low- and middle-income countries. We examined the patterns, correlates and care-seeking behaviour of adults suffering from major depressive episode (MDE) in China.
A nationwide study recruited 512 891 adults aged 30–79 years from 10 provinces across China during 2004–2008. The 12-month prevalence of MDE was assessed by the Modified Composite International Diagnostic Interview-short form. Logistic regression yielded adjusted odds ratios (ORs) of MDE associated with socio-economic, lifestyle and health-related factors and major stressful life events.
Overall, 0.7% of participants had MDE and a further 2.4% had major depressive symptoms. Stressful life events were strongly associated with MDE [adjusted OR 14.7, 95% confidence interval (CI) 13.7–15.7], with a dose–response relationship with the number of such events experienced. Family conflict had the highest OR for MDE (18.9, 95% CI 16.8–21.2) among the 10 stressful life events. The risk of MDE was also positively associated with rural residency (OR 1.5, 95% CI 1.4–1.7), low income (OR 2.3, 95% CI 2.1–2.4), living alone (OR 2.6, 95% CI 2.3–3.0), smoking (OR 1.4, 95% CI 1.3–1.6) and certain other mental disorders (e.g. anxiety, phobia). Similar, albeit weaker, associations were observed with depressive symptoms. Among those with MDE, about 15% sought medical help or took psychiatric medication, 15% reported having suicidal ideation and 6% reported attempting suicide.
Among Chinese adults, the patterns and correlates of MDE were generally consistent with those observed in the West. The low rates of seeking professional help and treatment highlight the great gap in mental health services in China.
Nanosecond (ns) pulsed dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) actuator in a laminar flat plate boundary layer is investigated numerically in an attempt to gain some new insights into the understanding of ns DBD actuation mechanism. Special emphasis is put on the examination, separation and comparison of behaviors of discharge induced micro shock wave and residual heat as well as on the investigation of response of external flow to the two effects. The shock wave is found to introduce highly transient, localized perturbation to the flow and be able to significantly alter the flow pattern shortly after its initiation. The main flow tends to quickly recover to close to its undisturbed state due to the transient nature of perturbation. However, with the shock decay and final disappearance, another perturbation source in the vicinity of discharge region, which contains contribution from both residual heat and shock, becomes increasingly pronounced and eventually develops into a perturbation wave train in the boundary layer. The perturbation is relatively weak and may not be a Tollmien-Schlichting (TS) wave and not trigger the laminar-turbulent transition of boundary layer. Instead, it is more likely to manipulate the flow stability to achieve the strong control authority of this kind of actuation in the case of flow separation control. In addition, a parametric study over the different electrical and hydrodynamic parameters is also conducted.
It remains unclear whether the topological deficits of the white matter network documented in cross-sectional studies of chronic schizophrenia patients are due to chronic illness or to other factors such as antipsychotic treatment effects. To answer this question, we evaluated the white matter network in medication-naive first-episode schizophrenia patients (FESP) before and after a course of treatment.
We performed a longitudinal diffusion tensor imaging study in 42 drug-naive FESP at baseline and then after 8 weeks of risperidone monotherapy, and compared them with 38 healthy volunteers. Graph theory was utilized to calculate the topological characteristics of brain anatomical network. Patients’ clinical state was evaluated using the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS) before and after treatment.
Pretreatment, patients had relatively intact overall topological organizations, and deficient nodal topological properties primarily in prefrontal gyrus and limbic system components such as the bilateral anterior and posterior cingulate. Treatment with risperidone normalized topological parameters in the limbic system, and the enhancement positively correlated with the reduction in PANSS-positive symptoms. Prefrontal topological impairments persisted following treatment and negative symptoms did not improve.
During the early phase of antipsychotic medication treatment there are region-specific alterations in white matter topological measures. Limbic white matter topological dysfunction improves with positive symptom reduction. Prefrontal deficits and negative symptoms are unresponsive to medication intervention, and prefrontal deficits are potential trait biomarkers and targets for negative symptom treatment development.
We present the optical emission line properties of a sample of 155 bright X-ray selected ROSAT Seyfert 1 type AGN. The measured properties are gathered for correlation analysis. The strong correlations between Hβ redshift, flux ratios of Fe II to Hβ broad component and [O III] to Hβ narrow component are found.
Geometric model of a lobed mixing exhaust system is created and its flow field is simulated by using the steady Reynolds Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) equations under the condition of different core flow inlet swirl angles. According to the numerical simulation results, due to the guidance effect of the lobe parallel side wall, the structure and vorticity of streamwise vortices change little near the lobe exit with inlet swirl angle, and it is the same with the thermal mixing efficiency. As the flow develops, although the inlet swirl angle has limited influence on the streamwise vorticity, it greatly affects the structure of streamwise vortices. It causes the thermal mixing efficiency to increase with the swirl angle. As for the total pressure recovery coefficient, it falls slightly when the inlet swirl strengthens. At the nozzle exit, the total pressure recovery coefficient of CFISA = 30° model is 0.5% lower than CFISA = 0° model. Moreover, as the inlet swirl strengthens, the thrust fall of lobed mixing exhaust system gradually accelerates, especially when the inlet swirl angle is over 15°.
We present gold (Au) and silver (Ag) nanoparticles (NPs) could be used not only for stimuli-responsive optical sensors but also for the quantification of radical compounds when these nanoparticles are suitably combined with polymeric materials. When Au NPs are assembled 2-dimensionally on the surface of hydrogel NPs which respond to temperatures, the hybrid NPs displayed thermoreversible multiple color switching. Accordingly, optical bandwidths of the hybrid NPs are reversibly changed with temperatures: with hybrid NPs assembled with 51 nm Au NPs, prominent optical signals are recorded at 900 nm at 50 °C while most of extinction signals are shown below 600 nm at room temperatures. In addition, we demonstrate the modification of Ag NPs’ surfaces (nanocubes and nanospheres) with polyelectrolytes (either positive or negative) could extend the quantifiable detection ranges of radical compounds. Through the surface modification of Ag NPs, the polyelectrolytes protect the Ag NPs by probably either retarding (forming diffusion barriers) or preventing (blocking/entrapping/scavenging) the arrival of radicals to Ag NPs or both. The roles of the polyelectrolytes are demonstrated by using radical compounds produced from tetrahydrofuran and H2O2. From the results, we could obtain calibration curves for the wide-range quantification of radical compounds.
We propose a theoretical designed peptide-Au cluster probe and realize spatially marking and quantitatively counting αIIbβ3 integrin via this novel nanoprobe. On single cell level, we find the number of αIIbβ3 integrin ranges from 5.75 to 9.11×10-17 mol for the heteroexpression of individual cells. Because the variation of proteins (including integrin and other biomarkers) on single cell has a tight correlation with many serious human diseases, our quantifying protein method on a single cell level is helpful for estimating the disease progression for diagnosis and detecting the drug response for therapy.
Gold nanoclusters with precisely controlled atomic composition have emerged as promising materials for applications in nanotechnology because of their unique optical, electronic and catalytic properties. The recent discovery of a 20-gold-atom nanocluster protected by 16 organothiolate molecules, Au20(SR)16, is the smallest member in a surprising series of small gold−thiolate nanoclusters with a face-centered cubic (FCC) ordered core structures. A fundamental challenge facing gold nanocluster research is being able to understand the composition-dependent properties from a site-specific perspective in order to confidently establish structure-property relationships. A step in this direction is to examine the influence of various structural features (core geometry and thiolate-gold bonding motifs) on the bonding properties of gold-thiolate nanoclusters. In this work, ab initio simulations were conducted to systematically study the local structure and electronic properties of Au20(SR)16 from each unique Au and S atomic site using Au L3-edge extended X-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS), projected density of states (l-DOS) and S K-edge X-ray absorption near edge structure (XANES) spectra. Two larger FCC-like gold-thiolate nanoclusters (Au28(SR)20 and Au36(SR)24) were used for a comparative study with Au20(SR)16, providing further predictions about the cluster size effect on the bonding properties of gold-thiolate nanoclusters with FCC-like core structures. Through this comparison, the smaller core size of Au20(SR)16 produces an EXAFS scattering signature that is non-FCC-like but shows very similar electronic properties with a larger FCC-like gold-thiolate nanocluster.
Ag or Au nanocubes are known to be plasmonic nanoparticles with strong plasmonic fields concentrated around their corners1. When these nanoparticles aggregate the individual plasmonic oscillations of each particle begin to couple. The coupling between the two plasmonic nanoparticles is assumed to be dipolar in nature which results in an exponential red shift dependence of their localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) on the dimer separation2. Unfortunately, this exponential behavior is shown to fail as the separation distance between the two 42 nm nanocube dimer becomes 6nm or smaller3. Hooshmand et al4 have noted that these separation distances are marked by the formation of hot spots between the facets of the dimer.
This dipolar exponential behavior results from a treatment of the coupling between the two excited nanocubes as a coupling between two oscillating dipole moments2. As a result, the vectorial addition of all the oscillating electronic dipoles is assumed to interact with the nearest nanoparticle as a single oscillating electronic dipole. Herein we suggest that as the separation distance becomes increasingly small, the coupling between the individual oscillating dipoles on the different nanocubes becomes significant. Thus, the dipolar exponential behavior fails to accurately predict the near field coupling between two nanoparticles with small separation distances.
This leads to the realization that the interaction between the individual oscillating dipoles on the two nanocubes changes in a complicated manner as a function of separation distance. At 2nm, a good fraction of the oscillating dipoles are between the adjacent facets of the nanocubes as well as between the the corners. While at 3 nm less are in between the two facets of the nanocubes and a larger portion are localized at the corners. Thus, the coupling is not only dependent on the separation distance but also on what the separation does to the net interaction between the oscillating dipoles on each facet of the two coupled nanocubes. This results in the failure of the exponential behavior as the dipole moment on each nanocube is changing with distance in a complicated manner.