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To characterise the dissemination patterns of uropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC) in a community, we conducted a study utilising molecular and fundamental descriptive epidemiology. The subjects, consisted of women having community-acquired acute urinary tract infection (UTI), were enrolled in the study from 2011 to 2012. UPEC isolates were subjected to antibacterial-susceptibility testing, O serogrouping, phylotyping, multilocus-sequence typing with phylogenetic-tree analysis and pulsed-field-gel electrophoresis (PFGE). From the 209 unique positive urinary samples 166 UPEC were isolated, of which 129 were fully susceptible to the tested antibiotics. Of the 53 sequence types (STs), the four most prevalent STs (ST95, ST131, ST73 and ST357) accounted for 60% of all UPEC strains. Antimicrobial resistance was less frequently observed for ST95 and ST73 than for the others. A majority of rare STs and a few common STs constituted the diversity pattern within the population structure, which was composed of the two phylogenetically distinct clades. Eleven genetically closely related groups were determined by PFGE, which accounted for 42 of the 166 UPEC isolates, without overt geo-temporal clustering. Our results indicate that a few major lineages of UPEC, selected by unidentified factors, are disseminated in this community and contribute to a large fraction of acute UTIs.
To examine the diagnostic value of hyoid cephalometrics in predicting retroglossal obstruction severity in patients with obstructive sleep apnoea hypopnea syndrome.
Ninety-six obstructive sleep apnoea hypopnea syndrome patients diagnosed by polysomnography were recruited. Polysomnography was repeated with a nasopharyngeal tube after eliminating rhinal and palatopharyngeal obstruction. Cervical vertebra lateral films and hyoid cephalometric measurements were obtained, including the distances of the hyoid to the: mental tubercle, prevertebral plane, mental tubercle coronal plane and mental tubercle horizontal plane.
The apnoea-hypopnoea index for nasopharyngeal tube polysomnography was significantly correlated with distances from the hyoid to: prevertebral plane (r = 0.350), coronal plane (r = 0.477), horizontal plane (r = 0.529) and mental tubercle (r = 0.560). It was strongly correlated with the hyoid to mental tubercle distance/hyoid to prevertebral plane distance value (r = 0.683), and (hyoid to coronal plane distance plus hyoid to horizontal plane distance)/hyoid to prevertebral plane distance value (r = 0.675).
Obstructive sleep apnoea hypopnea syndrome patients with longer hyoid to mental tubercle distances, and/or more inferior and posterior hyoid bone position, are more prone to retroglossal stenosis and obstruction. Hyoid cephalometrics are valuable for predicting retroglossal obstruction severity.
General life stress has been associated with altered DNA methylation in individuals of African Ancestry, although the relationship between parenting stress and DNA methylation has not been described. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between maternal parenting stress and DNA methylation among African Ancestry mother-child dyads.
We evaluated epigenome-wide DNA methylation relative to parenting stress in 74 mother-child dyads using linear mixed models.
Significant variation in maternal DNA methylation at 95 CpG sites was associated with level of parenting stress. Notably, we identified a change in DNA methylation associated with poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase-1, which plays a key role in stress signaling. We did not identify any significant variation in child DNA methylation related to maternal parenting stress.
However, DNA methylation patterns observed in children mirrored patterns observed in their mothers. The results suggest that differential maternal DNA methylation is associated with higher levels of parenting stress.
Knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAP) of the population regarding severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) in endemic areas of Lu'an in China were assessed before and after an intervention programme. The pre-intervention phase was conducted using a sample of 425 participants from the 12 selected villages with the highest rates of endemic SFTS infection. A predesigned interview questionnaire was used to assess KAP. Subsequently, an intervention programme was designed and applied in the selected villages. KAP was re-assessed for each population in the selected villages using the same interview questionnaire. Following 2 months of the programme, 339 participants had completed the re-assessed survey. The impact of the intervention programme was evaluated using suitable statistical methods. A significant increase in the KAP and total KAP scores was noted following the intervention programme, whereas the proportion of correct knowledge, the positive attitudes and the effective practices toward SFTS of respondents increased significantly. The intervention programme was effective in improving KAP level of SFTS in populations that were resident in endemic areas.
Piglets are characteristically cold intolerant and thus susceptible to high mortality. However, browning of white adipose tissue (WAT) can induce non-shivering thermogenesis as a potential strategy to facilitate the animal’s response to cold. Whether cold exposure can induce browning of subcutaneous WAT (sWAT) in piglets in a similar manner as it can in humans remains largely unknown. In this study, piglets were exposed to acute cold (4°C, 10 h) or chronic cold exposure (8°C, 15 days), and the genes and proteins of uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1)-dependent and independent thermogenesis, mitochondrial biogenesis, lipogenic and lipolytic processes were analysed. Interestingly, acute cold exposure induced browning of porcine sWAT, smaller adipocytes and the upregulated expression of UCP1, PGC1α, PGC1β, C/EBPβ, Cidea, UCP3, CKMT1 and PM20D1. Conversely, chronic cold exposure impaired the browning process, reduced mitochondrial numbers and the expression of browning markers, including UCP1, PGC1α and PRDM16. The present study demonstrated that acute cold exposure (but not chronic cold exposure) induces porcine sWAT browning. Thus, browning of porcine sWAT could be a novel strategy to balance the body temperature of piglets, and thus could be protective against cold exposure.
An updated compilation of published and new data of major-ion (Ca, Cl, K, Mg, Na, NO3, SO4) and methylsulfonate (MS) concentrations in snow from 520 Antarctic sites is provided by the national ITASE (International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition) programmes of Australia, Brazil, China, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Norway, the United Kingdom, the United States and the national Antarctic programme of Finland. The comparison shows that snow chemistry concentrations vary by up to four orders of magnitude across Antarctica and exhibit distinct geographical patterns. The Antarctic-wide comparison of glaciochemical records provides a unique opportunity to improve our understanding of the fundamental factors that ultimately control the chemistry of snow or ice samples. This paper aims to initiate data compilation and administration in order to provide a framework for facilitation of Antarctic-wide snow chemistry discussions across all ITASE nations and other contributing groups. The data are made available through the ITASE web page (http://www2.umaine.edu/itase/content/syngroups/snowchem.html) and will be updated with new data as they are provided. In addition, recommendations for future research efforts are summarized.
We investigated the first presence of qnrA among Shigella sonnei clinical isolates in Jiangsu Province, China. The qnrA-positive isolates coexisted with the mutation in gyrA at codon 83, these isolates were resistant to nalidixic acid and 22·2% (2 of 9) of them were resistant to norfloxacin.
As a disconnection syndrome, schizophrenia has shown impaired resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC) in the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC); however, the OFC is a rather heterogeneous region and the rsFC changes in the OFC subregions remain unknown.
A total of 98 schizophrenia patients and 102 healthy controls underwent resting-state functional MRI using a sensitivity-encoded spiral-in imaging sequence (SENSE-SPIRAL) to reduce susceptibility-induced signal loss and distortion. The OFC subregions were defined according to a previous parcellation study that divided the OFC into the anterior (OFCa), medial (OFCm), posterior (OFCp), intermediate (OFCi), and lateral (OFCl) subregions. The rsFC was compared using two-way repeated-measures ANOVA.
Whether or not global signal regression, compared with healthy controls, schizophrenia patients consistently exhibited decreased rsFC between the left OFCi and the left middle temporal gyrus and the right middle frontal gyrus (MFG), between the right OFCi and the right MFG and the left inferior frontal gyrus, between the right OFCm and the middle cingulate cortex and the left Rolandic operculum. These rsFC changes still remained significant even after cortical atrophy correction.
These findings suggest a selective functional disconnection of the OFC subregions in schizophrenia, and provide more precise information about the functional disconnections of the OFC in this disorder.
EC—Seal Products raises an important issue in World Trade Organization (WTO) law: How can WTO trea-ties be interpreted to accommodate divergent legitimate purposes of a domestic regulation? The European Union (EU) measure at issue is a ban on the placing of seal products on the EU market, coupled with excep-tions3 for seal products produced by Inuit and other indigenous communities (IC exception), and for seal products obtained from seals hunted for the purpose of marine resource management and sold on a nonprofit basis (MRM exception). The seal ban was imposed out of the public concern over the cruel manner in which seals are hunted and killed, whereas the IC exception was made to protect the traditional lifestyle of indigenous peoples and the MRM exception accommodated theneed for sustainable management of marine resources. The EU regulation, therefore, was designed to achieve divergent policy objectives. The exceptions derogate from the ban because they permit hunting and killing of seals which can cause the very pain andsuffering for seals that concerns the EU public.
Existing studies reveal that the shape corners of hexagonal fiber affect the degree of constraint on the matrix material. However, none of these studies included the effect of orientation of hexagonal fibers. In this study, a computational micromechanics model of oriented hexagonal fibers in periodic unidirectional composite materials is established for the determination of effective orthotropic elastic properties of the composite. In the present numerical modeling, the representative unit composite cell including the matrix material and the single oriented hexagonal fiber or random oriented hexagonal fibers is solved by micro-scale finite element analysis with different stress loads and periodic displacement boundary conditions, which are applied along the cell boundary to meet the requirement of straight-line constraint during deformation of the cell. Subsequently, the effective elastic properties of the composite are evaluated for periodic regular packing and random packing using the homogenization approach for investigating the influence of unified orientation and random orientation of the hexagonal fibers on the overall elastic properties of the fiber-reinforced composites. The numerical results are verified by comparing with other available results.
At the end of 2013, China reported a countrywide outbreak of measles. From January to May 2014, we investigated the clinical and immunological features of the cases of the outbreak admitted to our hospital. In this study, all 112 inpatients with clinically diagnosed measles were recruited from the 302 Military Hospital of China. The virus was isolated from throat swabs from these patients, and cytokine profiles were examined. By detecting the measles virus of 30 of the 112 patients, we found that this measles outbreak was of the H1 genotype, which is the major strain in China. The rates of complications, specifically pneumonia and liver injury, differed significantly in patients aged <8 months, 8 months to 18 years, and >18 years: pneumonia was more common in children, while liver injury was more common in adults. Pneumonia was a significant independent risk factor affecting measles duration. Compared to healthy subjects, measles patients had fewer CD4+IL-17+, CD4+IFN-γ+, and CD8+IFN-γ+ cells in both the acute and recovery phases. In contrast, measles patients in the acute phase had more CD8+IL-22+ cells than those in recovery or healthy subjects. We recommend that future studies focus on the age-related distribution of pneumonia and liver injury as measles-related complications as well as the association between immunological markers and measles prognosis.
Legionnaires’ disease (LD) is a globally distributed systemic infectious disease. The burden of LD in many regions is still unclear, especially in Asian countries including China. A survey of Legionella infection using real-time PCR and nested sequence-based typing (SBT) was performed in two hospitals in Shanghai, China. A total of 265 bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) specimens were collected from hospital A between January 2012 and December 2013, and 359 sputum specimens were collected from hospital B throughout 2012. A total of 71 specimens were positive for Legionella according to real-time PCR focusing on the 5S rRNA gene. Seventy of these specimens were identified as Legionella pneumophila as a result of real-time PCR amplification of the dotA gene. Results of nested SBT revealed high genetic polymorphism in these L. pneumophila and ST1 was the predominant sequence type. These data revealed that the burden of LD in China is much greater than that recognized previously, and real-time PCR may be a suitable monitoring technology for LD in large sample surveys in regions lacking the economic and technical resources to perform other methods, such as urinary antigen tests and culture methods.
Live cells can sense the mechanical characteristics of the microenvironment and translate the mechanical cues to intracellular biochemical signals in physiology and disease. To investigate intracellular signaling transduction during mechanosensing, nanotechnologies, and FRET live-cell imaging technologies have been developed to visualize the output signals in real time, such as intracellular molecular activity. Meanwhile, micropatterned technologies have been applied to modulate the physical and mechanical environment surrounding the cell to fine-tune the input signals in cellular mechanosensing. These advanced technologies can join forces and shed new light into the molecular networks that control mechanotransduction in normal conditions and disease.
Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) is an emerging infectious disease that was caused by a novel bunyavirus, SFTSV. The study aimed to disclose the epidemiological and clinical characteristics of SFTSV infection in China so far. An integrated clinical database comprising 1920 SFTS patients was constructed by combining first-hand clinical information collected from SFTS sentinel hospitals (n = 1159) and extracted data (n = 761) from published literature. The considered variables comprised clinical manifestations, routine laboratory tests of acute infection, hospitalization duration and disease outcome. SFTSV-IgG data from 19 119 healthy subjects were extracted from the published papers. The key clinical variables, case-fatality rate (CFR) and seroprevalence were estimated by meta-analysis. The most commonly seen clinical manifestations of SFTSV infection were fever, anorexia, myalgia, chill and lymphadenopathy. The major laboratory findings were elevated lactate dehydrogenase, aminotransferase, followed by thrombocytopenia, lymphocytopenia, elevated alanine transaminase and creatine kinase. A CFR of 12·2% was estimated, significantly higher than that obtained from national reporting data, but showing no geographical difference. In our paper, the mortality rate was about 1·9 parts per million. Older age and longer delay to hospitalization were significantly associated with fatal outcome. A pooled seroprevalence of 3·0% was obtained, which increased with age, while comparable for gender. This study represents a clinical characterization on the largest group of SFTS patients up to now. A higher than expected CFR was obtained. A wider spectrum of clinical index was suggested to be used to identify SFTSV infection, while the useful predictor for fatal outcome was found to be restricted.
A high molecular weight protein (HMWP) was isolated and purified from sow milk, and some of its biochemical characteristics and biological functions were identified. The origin of HMWP was also investigated. The molecular weight of HMWP was determined to be about 115 000 and 114 800 by SDS-PAGE and gel filtration, respectively. The sequence of 10 amino acids in N-terminal of HMWP was Ala-Leu-Val-Gln-Ser-Cys-Leu-Asn-Leu-Val. The sequence was blasted against GenBank. No protein showed significant similarity with this sequence suggesting the HMWP may be novel. The result of liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (LC-MS) also proved HMWP could be a novel protein. By amino acid assay, HMWP was rich in glutamate (including glutamine), cysteine, glycine, aspartic acid (including asparagines) and proline. The content of hydrophobic amino acids (Ala, Val, Leu, Ile, Met, Phe and Pro) was lower at 18.59% of the total amino acids suggesting HMWP has high solubility in water. Western blots of lectins were used to identify the kinds of carbohydrate residues attached to HMWP qualitatively. The result showed that HMWP was a kind of glycoprotein containing N-acetylneuraminic acid (NeuNAc), mannose (Man) and/or N-acetylglucosamine (GlcNAc). By isoelectric focusing, HMWP pI was found to be 5.1. Compared with milk fat globule membrane protein (MFGMP) isolated from the sow milk in SDS-PAGE, MFGMP did not contain HMWP. HMWP was assumed to be a secretory milk protein. HMWP was not found in bovine, goat, rabbit or human milk in SDS-PAGE gel suggesting HMWP may be unique to sow milk. By Western blot, HMWP could be detected in sow milk, not in sow serum, which suggests it is synthesized and secreted by the mammary gland. HMWP concentrations in sows milk were the lowest in the first day of lactation, rose significantly during lactation 1 to 7 days. The HMWP content of sows milk remained relatively constant ((1.95±0.13) g/l) during lactation 7 to 20 days. HMWP significantly inhibited Escherichia coli in a dose related manner in vitro. Overall, HMWP could be a novel sow milk protein with implications for the mammary gland and the piglet.
Three groups of genes, Vrn, Ppd and Eps, control life-cycle duration in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). The duration of a developmental phase between two stages is important for freezing resistance, heading time, anthesis and ripening date as well as yield component generation. The aim of the current study was to assess the effect of Vrn-D1 on wheat development. The vernalization genes Vrn-A1, -B1, -D1, -B3, photoperiod gene Ppd-1 and candidate genes Mot1 and FtsH4 for Eps in ‘G883’, ‘Pumai 9’ and their offspring, a group of sister lines (SLs) derived from an advanced generation, were genotyped using specific molecular markers. All detected loci were the same in the SLs and their parents except the Vrn-D1 locus. Three developmental traits, spike differentiation process, heading date and final leaf number on the main stem, were characterized in three sowing date treatments in the field. When temperatures increased, cultivars/lines carrying the dominant Vrn-D1 gene entered each spike differentiation process faster than those with the recessive vrn-D1 in the same sowing date treatment. Lines carrying Vrn-D1 had smaller final leaf number on the main stem than those with vrn-D1, and the heading dates of the former were earlier than those of the latter, especially in the fourth treatment, sown on 23 February 2012. These data suggest that Vrn-D1 confers a spring habit on wheat and the vrn-D1 confers a cold, hardy winter habit. The Vrn-D1 alleles play very important roles in semi-winter and tender spring wheat cultivars, especially in warm weather in Henan, China. Regulating developmental traits by tracing Vrn-D1 and getting an ideal combination of Vrn alleles to accommodate different wheat zones is a key role for future wheat molecular breeding.
The assumption that a zero-incidence flow around bodies of revolution is axisymmetric has been broadly adopted by many researchers, even for cases where the flow around such bodies becomes unstable. In this study, the validity of this assumption is revisited using CFD simulation. As a case study, the simulations of both stable and unstable hypersonic flows around spiked blunt bodies in 2D axisymmetric and full 3D computational domains are compared. It is found that, for the stable flow cases, the main flow features are apparently axisymmetric and the assumption is generally acceptable. However, some degree of asymmetry can be observed inside the shear layer in the separated region, causing small variation in the drag coefficient. For the unstable flow cases, the asymmetry of the flow features is much more significant. More importantly, the assumption that the flow is axisymmetric is found to overestimate the level of flow unsteadiness. The amplitude of temporal drag variation as predicted by the axisymmetric solution is higher than that predicted by the full 3D solution.
We investigated the prevalence of β-lactamase genes and plasmid-mediated quinolone resistance (PMQR) determinants in 51 carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) from five teaching hospitals in central China. The prevalence of carbapenem resistance in Enterobacteriaceae was 1·0% (51/5012). Of 51 CRE, 31 (60·8%) isolates were positive for one tested carbapenemase gene, while 10 (19·6%) were simultaneously positive for two tested carbapenemase genes. The positive rates of blaKPC-2, blaNDM-1, blaIMP-4, blaIMP-26 and blaIMP-8 were 54·9%, 17·6%, 11·8%, 11·8% and 3·9%, respectively. Of 10 CRE with two carbapenemase genes, three, five, one and one were positive for blaKPC-2 and blaIMP-4, blaKPC-2 and blaIMP-26, blaKPC-2 and blaIMP-8, and blaKPC-2 and blaNDM-1, respectively. Eight of nine blaNDM-1-positive isolates lacked carbapenemases by the modified Hodge test, while 27/28 isolates harbouring blaKPC-2 were positive for carbapenemases determined by this test; 41·2% of the CRE-positive isolates also harboured ESBL genes in various combinations (three and two positive for blaKPC-2 also carried blaDHA-1 and blaCMY-2). The positive rates of qnrS1, qnrA1, qnrB and aac-(6/)-Ib-cr in CRE were 25·5%, 9·8%, 23·5% and 15·7%, respectively. In particular, 7/9 isolates harbouring blaNDM-1 were positive for these quinolone resistance genes, of which five carried qnrS1 and two carried qnrS1 and qnrB4. All but two of 29 Klebsiella pneumoniae isolates were grouped into 20 clonal clusters by PFGE, with the predominant cluster accounting for four blaKPC-2-positive isolates distributed in the same hospital. We conclude that there is a high prevalence of blaNDM-1 and PMQR determinants in CRE isolates in central China. Multiple resistance determinants in various combinations co-exist in these strains and we report for the first time the co-existence of blaKPC-2 and blaIMP-26 in a strain of Klebsiella oxytoca.