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Antibiotics are designed to affect gut microbiota and subsequently gut homeostasis. However, limited information exists about short- and long-term effects of early antibiotic intervention (EAI) on gut homeostasis (especially for the small intestine) of pigs following antibiotic withdrawal. We investigated the impact of EAI on specific bacterial communities, microbial metabolites and mucosal immune parameters in the small intestine of later-growth-stage pigs fed with diets differing in CP levels. Eighteen litters of piglets were fed creep feed with or without antibiotics from day 7 to day 42. At day 42, pigs within each group were offered a normal- or low-CP diet. Five pigs per group were slaughtered at days 77 and 120. At day 77, EAI increased Enterobacteriaceae counts in the jejunum and ileum and decreased Bifidobacterium counts in the jejunum and ileum (P < 0.05). Moreover, tryptamine, putrescine, secretory immunoglobulin (Ig) A and IgG concentrations in the ileum and interleukin-10 (IL-10) mRNA and protein levels in the jejunum and ileum were decreased in pigs with EAI (P < 0.05). At day 120, EAI only suppressed Clostridium cluster XIVa counts in the jejunum and ileum (P < 0.05). These results suggest that EAI has a short-term effect on specific bacterial communities, amino acid decarboxylation and mucosal immune parameters in the small intestine (particularly in the ileum). At days 77 and 120, feeding a low-CP diet affected Bifidobacterium, Clostridium cluster IV, Clostridium cluster XIVa and Enterobacteriaceae counts in the jejunum or ileum (P < 0.05). Moreover, feeding a low-CP diet increased the concentrations of Igs in the jejunum and decreased pro-inflammatory cytokines levels in the jejunum and ileum (P < 0.05). At day 120, feeding a low-CP diet increased short-chain fatty acid concentrations, reduced ammonia and spermidine concentrations and up-regulated genes related to barrier function in the jejunum and ileum (P < 0.05). These results suggest that feeding a low-CP diet changes specific bacterial communities and intestinal metabolite concentrations and modifies mucosal immune parameters. These findings contribute to our understanding on the duration of the impact of EAI on gut homeostasis and may provide basis data for nutritional modification in young pigs after antibiotic treatment.
Fluid motion has two well-known fundamental processes: the vector transverse process characterized by vorticity, and the scalar longitudinal process consisting of a sound mode and an entropy mode, characterized by dilatation and thermodynamic variables. The existing theories for the sound mode involve the multi-variable issue and its associated difficulty of source identification. In this paper, we define the source of sound inside the fluid by the objective causality inherent in dynamic equations relevant to a longitudinal process, which naturally favours the material time-rate operator
rather than the local time-rate operator
, and describes the sound mode by inhomogeneous advective wave equations. The sources of sound physical production inside the fluid are then examined at two levels. For the conventional formulation in terms of thermodynamic variables at the first level, we show that the universal kinematic source can be condensed to a scalar invariant of the surface deformation tensor. Further, in the formulation in terms of dilatation at the second level, we find that the sound mode in viscous and heat-conducting flow has sources from rich nonlinear couplings of vorticity, entropy and surface deformation, which cannot be disclosed at the first level. Preliminary numerical demonstration of the theoretical findings is made for two typical compressible flows, i.e. the interaction of two corotating Gaussian vortices and the unsteady type IV shock/shock interaction. The results obtained in this study provide a new theoretical basis for, and physical insight into, understanding various nonlinear longitudinal processes and the interactions therein.
The purpose of this study was to predict quality of life (QoL) and associated factors in patients with chronic mental illness (CMI) in Kaohsiung, Taiwan.
Patients (N = 2,023; 52.9% male, 47.1% female) were recruited using cross-sectional and convenience sampling. Structured questionnaires, including a living conditions questionnaire, a psychotic symptom assessment scale, the Caregiver Burden Scale, the 5-item Brief Symptom Rating Scale (BSRS-5), and the Medical Outcomes Study Short Form-12 (MOS SF-12) were used to collect data.
Single-factor analyses showed that those who were single, employed, and younger had better QoL. Additionally, patients who had fewer psychological problems and lower levels of psychological distress reported better QoL. Current psychotic symptoms, especially positive symptoms, were negatively correlated with QoL. For disease factors, schizophrenic patients and hospitalized patients reported better QoL than both bipolar patients and community patients. For family factors, caregiver's attitude and caregiver's burden were negatively correlated with QoL. For social factors, unstable housing and community social dysfunction were negatively correlated with QoL. The results showed that all four dimensions (social, family, disease and personal factors) were significant predictors of the mental component summary (MCS) and physical component summary (PCS) dimensions of QoL.
Personal factors and disease factors were the most important predictors of QoL in CMI patients of this sample. Family factors were more important than social factors in the MCS dimension, but social factors were more important than family factors in the PCS dimension.
The majority of neuroimaging studies reported smaller hippocampal volumes in patients with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Our previous study found that PTSD is associated with selective volume loss of the CA3/dentate gyrus subfields However, the causality of smaller hippocampal volumes and PTSD cannot be determined in these studies because of the cross-sectional nature of them. The purpose of this longitudinal study was to determine if PTSD caused hippocampal subfields volume loss following traffic accidents. Volumes of hippocampal subfields in thirty seven traffic accident survivors were measured using 3T MRI in one week after accident, and twenty five of them completed one year follow-up MRI scan. Fourteen participants met the PTSD diagnosis in one year follow-up while other eleven did not met PTSD diagnosis criteria. PTSD was significantly associated with volumes reduction of CA3/dentate gyrus subfield (β=0.244 p=0.017) while other subfields were spared. It also shown volume loses of Entorhinal Cortex (ERC) of both side in one year follow-up for the whole sample (mean volume reduction: right 19.25mm3, left 22.04 mm3). But no association has been found between PTSD and ERC volume alteration. The findings indicate for the first time in humans that selective volume loss of the CA3/dentate gyrus subfields is the results but not the risk factor of PTSD. It also suggested that ERC may also be a stress sensitive region.
IntimatePartner violence (IPV) against women is an international public health concern. Evidence of the association between IPV and morbidity and mortality of women and child abuse is substantial. Primary health care workers play a critical role in detection and management of IPV.
The aim of this survey was to assess the primary care nurses' preparedness to identify and provide nursing care to women exposed to IPV.
A cross-sectional survey was carried out in all primary health care centers in rural communities in one county of southern Taiwan. This survey involved all available nurses (280) in these centers. The response rate was 94.6%. A self- administrative questionnaire was used for data collection.
The preparedness regarding IPV among nurses was weak. 10.2% of the nurses believed they were sufficiently prepared to deal with women exposed to IPV. 13.2% of the nurses have received education or training about dealing with IPV. The most frequently reported barriers to deal with battered women were lack of knowledge and skills about IPV.
These results suggest that an in-service training program need to be set up for nurses working in primary health care centers. This program would help the nurses prepare to intervene more effectively to promote the health of battered women.
The Palaeoproterozoic Birimian Supergroup of the West African Craton (WAC) consists of volcanic belts composed predominantly of basaltic and andesitic rocks and intervening sedimentary basins composed predominantly of wackes and argillites. Mafic metavolcanic rocks and granitoid-hosted enclaves from the Palaeoproterozoic Lawra Belt of Ghana were analysed for geochemical and Sr–Nd isotopic data to constrain the geological evolution of the southeastern part of the WAC. The metavolcanic rocks display mainly tholeiitic signatures, whereas the enclaves show calc-alkaline signatures. The high SiO2 contents (48.6–68.9 wt%) of the enclaves are suggestive of their evolved character. The high Th/Yb values of the samples relative to that of the mantle array may indicate derivation of their respective magmas from subduction-modified source(s). The rocks show positive εNd values of +0.79 to +2.86 (metavolcanic rocks) and +0.79 to +1.82 (enclaves). These signatures and their Nd model ages (TDM2) of 2.31–2.47 Ga (metavolcanic rocks) and 2.39–2.47 Ga (enclaves) suggest they were probably derived from juvenile mantle-derived protoliths, with possible input of subducted pre-Birimian (Archean?) rocks in their source(s). Their positive Ba–Th and negative Nb–Ta, Zr–Hf and Ti anomalies may indicate their formation through subduction-related magmatism consistent with an arc setting. We propose that the metavolcanic rocks and enclaves from the Lawra Belt formed in a similar island-arc setting. We infer that the granitoids developed through variable degrees of mixing/mingling between basic magma and granitic melt during subduction, when blobs of basic to intermediate parental magma became trapped in the granitic magma to form the enclaves.
Thermosonic wire bonding is a common fabrication process for connecting devices in electronic packaging. However, when the free air ball (FAB) is compressed onto the I/O pad of the chip during bonding procedure, chip cracking may occur if the contact pressure is too large. This study proposes an effective simulation technique that can predict the wire ball geometry after bonding in an accurate range. The contact force obtained in the simulation can be used for possible die cracking behavior evaluation. The simulation in this study used the explicit time integration scheme to deal with the time marching problem, and the second-order precision arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian (ALE) algorithm was used to deal with the large deformation of the wire ball during the bonding process. In addition, the equilibrium smoothing algorithm in LS-DYNA can make the contact behavior and geometry of the bonding wire almost the same as the experiment, which can also significantly reduce the distortion of the mesh geometry after remeshing.
Glyphodes pyloalis Walker (Lepidoptera: Pyralididae) is a common pest in sericulture and has developed resistance to different insecticides. However, the mechanisms involved in insecticide resistance of G. pyloalis are poorly understood. Here, we present the first whole-transcriptome analysis of differential expression genes in insecticide-resistant and susceptible G. pyloalis. Clustering and enrichment analysis of DEGs revealed several biological pathways and enriched Gene Ontology terms were related to detoxification or insecticide resistance. Genes involved in insecticide metabolic processes, including cytochrome P450, glutathione S-transferases and carboxylesterase, were identified in the larval midgut of G. pyloalis. Among them, CYP324A19, CYP304F17, CYP6AW1, CYP6AB10, GSTs5, and AChE-like were significantly increased after propoxur treatment, while CYP324A19, CCE001c, and AChE-like were significantly induced by phoxim, suggesting that these genes were involved in insecticide metabolism. Furthermore, the sequence variation analysis identified 21 single nucleotide polymorphisms within CYP9A20, CYP6AB47, and CYP6AW1. Our findings reveal many candidate genes related to insecticide resistance of G. pyloalis. These results provide novel insights into insecticide resistance and facilitate the development of insecticides with greater specificity to G. pyloalis.
This paper aims to build the finite element model of the composite sinusoidal specimens and to carry out the parametric analysis. In this paper, the damage behaviour and the energy-absorbing results of composite sinusoidal specimens have been studied by quasi-static crushing experiments. The failure mechanisms of specimens under quasi-static crushing is further analysed. A numerical simulation has been performed by using the finite element model code LS-DYNA. The numerical results, in terms of load -displacement data, have been compared against experimental data, and good agreement has been found. Moreover, a sensitivity study has been carried out by varying material properties in order to assess their influence on the numerical results, and the material parameter selection scheme is optimised based on the constructed corresponding response surfaces. The results show that the response surface model has passed the test of goodness of fit, and the optimisation method can effectively assist the finite element modelling, and greatly decrease the numbers of trial and error.
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.
Previous studies showed that butyrate played benefit roles in the health and metabolism of animals. However, little information on the effects of butyrate on the metabolism of piglets at the extraintestinal level is available. The present study investigated transcriptomic and metabolomic responses in the livers of pigs to evaluate the effects of intravenous sodium butyrate (SB) on the body’s metabolism at the extraintestinal level. A total of 12 Duroc×Landrace×Large White growing barrows (60 days of age) fitted with jugular vein cannula were randomly allocated to either the SB group or the control (CO) group. Pigs in the SB group were intravenously infused with 10 ml SB (200 mmol/l) for 7 days, whereas pigs in the CO group were treated with the same amount of saline. The livers of pigs were collected for gene expression and metabolome analyses. The RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) analysis showed that the mRNA expression of Acyl-CoA synthetase long-chain family member 1 (ACSL1), carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1A (CPT1A), acetyl-CoA acyltransferase 2 (ACAA2) and phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase 1 (PCK1) were downregulated (Q<0.05), whereas fatty acid binding protein 1 (FABP1) and cytochrome P450 family 7 subfamily A member 1 (CYP7A1) were upregulated (P<0.05) by SB treatment, indicating a decrease in fatty acid oxidation and gluconeogenesis and an increase in fatty acid transportation and cholesterol metabolism. Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis showed that raffinose was enriched in the SB group compared with the CO group, indicating a decrease in metabolism of galactose. Moreover, SB treatment significantly decreased the concentration of blood cholesterol. The results suggest that a short-term intravenous infusion of SB could modulate hepatic lipid metabolism by decreasing fatty acid oxidation and increasing fatty acid transportation and cholesterol metabolism.
Monolithic large-aperture diffraction grating tiling is desired to increase the output capability of multi-kilojoule petawatt laser facilities. However, the wavefront errors of input pulse and gratings will degrade the focal spot quality and the compressibility of the output pulse. In this work, the effects of wavefront error of input pulse, deformation and wave aberration of the grating for the large-aperture tiled-grating compressor are investigated theoretically. A series of numerical simulations are presented to discuss the changing trends of focal spot energy caused by wavefront error of input pulse and obtain the error tolerance for specific goals. The influences of coating stress and the wave aberration of holographic exposure gratings on the diffraction wavefront are also discussed. Some advice is proposed for improving the performance of large-aperture tiled-grating. This work paves the way for the design of practical large-aperture tiled-grating compressor for ultrahigh intensity laser facilities in the future.
Mycobacterial diseases are prevalent in cancer and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients, especially those receiving tumor necrosis factor-α inhibitor (TNFi). However, the impact of cancer development on the risk of mycobacterial diseases among RA patients is unknown. Data from the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database were used to conduct a retrospective study to assess the occurrence of mycobacterial diseases in RA patients developing cancer (cancer-positive), those using TNFi (TNFi-exposure), those with cancer and using TNFi (cancer-TNFi-comb), and those without cancer and not using TNFi (cancer-TNFi-free). Cancer and TNFi exposure were time-dependent, and independent risk factors of mycobacterial diseases were assessed by Cox regression. Among 1344 RA patients diagnosed during 2000–2013, 68 (5·1%) developed cancer before their end points. The incidence rates of mycobacterial diseases in the cancer-positive (n = 56), TNFi-exposure (n = 290), cancer-TNFi-comb (n = 12), and cancer-TNFi-free (n = 986) subgroups were 6·7, 2·0, 7·6, and 1·3 per 1000 person-years, respectively. As compared with the cancer-TNFi-free group, the risk for mycobacterial diseases increased for the TNFi-exposure group (adjusted HR = 3·6, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1·1–11·5, P = 0·032) and remained high for cancer-positive (adjusted HR = 14·6, 95% CI 3·3–63·7, P < 0·001) after adjustment. This study suggested that cancer development increased the risk of mycobacterial diseases in RA patients, and risk assessment for this subgroup should be considered.
Eurytrema pancreaticum is one of the most common trematodes of cattle and sheep, and also infects humans occasionally, causing great economic losses and medical costs. In this study, the sequences of the complete nuclear ribosomal DNA (rDNA) repeat units of five E. pancreaticum individuals were determined for the first time. They were 8306–8310 bp in length, including the small subunit (18S) rDNA, internal transcribed spacer 1 (ITS1), 5.8S rDNA, internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2), large subunit (28S) rDNA and intergenic spacer (IGS). There were no length variations in any of the investigated 18S (1996 bp), ITS1 (1103 bp), 5.8S (160 bp), ITS2 (231 bp) or 28S (3669 bp) rDNA sequences, whereas the IGS rDNA sequences of E. pancreaticum had a 4-bp length variation, ranging from 1147 to 1151 bp. The intraspecific variations within E. pancreaticum were 0–0.2% for 18S rDNA, 0–0.5% for ITS1, 0% for 5.8S rDNA and ITS2, 0–0.2% for 28S rDNA and 2.9–20.2% for IGS. There were nine types of repeat sequences in ITS1, two types in 28S rDNA, but none in IGS. A phylogenetic analysis based on the 18S rDNA sequences classified E. pancreaticum in the family Dicrocoeliidae of Plagiorchiata, closely related to the suborder Opisthorchiata. These results provide useful information for the further study of Dicrocoeliidae trematodes.
Over the past 8 years, human enteroviruses (HEVs) have caused 27 227 cases of hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) in Xiamen, including 99 severe cases and six deaths. We aimed to explore the molecular epidemiology of HFMD in Xiamen to inform the development of diagnostic assays, vaccines and other interventions. From January 2009 to September 2015, 5866 samples from sentinel hospitals were tested using nested reverse transcription PCR that targeted the HEV 5′ untranslated region and viral protein 1 region. Of these samples, 4290 were tested positive for HEV and the amplicons were sequenced and genotyped. Twenty-two genotypes were identified. Enterovirus 71 (EV71) and coxsackieviruses A16, A6 and A10 (CA16, CA6 and CA10) were the most common genotypes, and there were no changes in the predominant lineages of these genotypes. EV71 became the most predominant genotype every 2 years. From 2013, CA6 replaced CA16 as one of the two most common genotypes. The results demonstrate the vast diversity of HFMD pathogens, and that minor genotypes are able to replace major genotypes. We recommend carrying-out long-term monitoring of the full spectrum of HFMD pathogens, which could facilitate epidemic prediction and the development of diagnostic assays and vaccines.
Bacillary dysentery continues to be a major health issue in developing countries and ambient temperature is a possible environmental determinant. However, evidence about the risk of bacillary dysentery attributable to ambient temperature under climate change scenarios is scarce. We examined the attributable fraction (AF) of temperature-related bacillary dysentery in urban and rural Hefei, China during 2006–2012 and projected its shifting pattern under climate change scenarios using a distributed lag non-linear model. The risk of bacillary dysentery increased with the temperature rise above a threshold (18·4 °C), and the temperature effects appeared to be acute. The proportion of bacillary dysentery attributable to hot temperatures was 18·74% (95 empirical confidence interval (eCI): 8·36–27·44%). Apparent difference of AF was observed between urban and rural areas, with AF varying from 26·87% (95% eCI 16·21–36·68%) in urban area to −1·90% (95 eCI −25·03 to 16·05%) in rural area. Under the climate change scenarios alone (1–4 °C rise), the AF from extreme hot temperatures (>31·2 °C) would rise greatly accompanied by the relatively stable AF from moderate hot temperatures (18·4–31·2 °C). If climate change proceeds, urban area may be more likely to suffer from rapidly increasing burden of disease from extreme hot temperatures in the absence of effective mitigation and adaptation strategies.
Elderly individuals with tuberculosis (TB) are more likely to have a non-specific clinical presentation of TB and high mortality. However, factors associated with mortality in elderly TB patients have not been extensively studied. This retrospective cohort study aimed to identify factors associated with death among elderly Taiwanese with TB. All elderly patients with TB from 2006 to 2014 in Taipei, Taiwan, were included in a study. Multiple logistic regression was used to identify the factors associated with death in elderly TB patients. The mean age of the 5011 patients was 79·7 years; 74·1% were men; 32·7% had mortality during the study follow-up period. After controlling for potential confounders, age ⩾75 years (reference: 65–74 years), male sex, end-stage renal disease (ESRD), malignancy, acid-fast bacilli-smear positivity, TB-culture positivity, pleural effusion on chest radiograph and notification by an ordinary ward or intensive care unit were associated with a higher risk of all-cause death; while high school, and university or higher education, cavity on chest radiograph and directly observed therapy were associated with a lower risk of all-cause death. This study found that the proportion of death among elderly patients with TB in Taipei, Taiwan, was high. To improve TB treatment outcomes, future control programmes should particularly target individuals with comorbidities (e.g. ESRD and malignancy) and those with a lower socio-economic status (e.g. not educated).
Patients with bipolar disorder (BD) frequently exhibit impulsive behaviors independent of their mood state, and trait impulsivity is increasingly recognized as a crucial BD biomarker. This study aimed to investigate structural correlates of trait impulsivity measured using the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale (BIS) in healthy controls (HCs) and patients with BD.
We recruited 59 patients diagnosed with BD I or BD II (35.3 ± 8.5 years) and 56 age- and sex-matched HCs (33.9 ± 7.4 years). Participants underwent structural magnetic resonance imaging and clinical evaluations, and their BIS scores were evaluated. An automated surface-based method (FreeSurfer) was used to measure cortical thickness and generate thickness maps for each participant. Brain-wise regression analysis of the association between cortical thickness and BIS scores was performed separately for BD and HC groups by using a general linear model.
Patients with BD obtained significantly higher BIS scores than HCs. In HCs, higher BIS scores were associated with a thinner cortex in the left inferior, middle and medial frontal cortices. By contrast, in BD patients, higher BIS scores were associated with a thicker cortex in the right insula. Patients with BD showed a thinner cortex than HCs in all these four structures.
The findings indicate that the left prefrontal cortex plays a cardinal role in trait impulsivity of healthy individuals. Patients with BD have a different structural correlate of trait impulsivity in the right insula. However, the use of various psychotropics in patients with BD may limit our interpretation of BD findings.
Complex oxides and semiconductors exhibit distinct yet complementary properties owing to their respective ionic and covalent natures. By electrically coupling complex oxides to traditional semiconductors within epitaxial heterostructures, enhanced or novel functionalities beyond those of the constituent materials can potentially be realized. Essential to electrically coupling complex oxides to semiconductors is control of the physical structure of the epitaxially grown oxide, as well as the electronic structure of the interface. Here we discuss how composition of the perovskite A- and B-site cations can be manipulated to control the physical and electronic structure of semiconductor—complex oxide heterostructures. Two prototypical heterostructures, Ba1−xSrxTiO3/Ge and SrZrxTi1−xO3/Ge, will be discussed. In the case of Ba1−xSrxTiO3/Ge, we discuss how strain can be engineered through A-site composition to enable the re-orientable ferroelectric polarization of the former to be coupled to carriers in the semiconductor. In the case of SrZrxTi1−xO3/Ge we discuss how B-site composition can be exploited to control the band offset at the interface. Analogous to heterojunctions between compound semiconducting materials, control of band offsets, i.e., band-gap engineering, provides a pathway to electrically couple complex oxides to semiconductors to realize a host of functionalities.