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We apply the first-principles calculations to investigate the structure, mechanical, and thermodynamic properties of WB12 and TiB12 under high pressure (0–100 GPa). The calculated results show that WB12 and TiB12 are thermodynamically stable at the 0 GPa or high pressure. WB12 is more thermodynamically stable than TiB12. In particular, the calculated Vickers hardness of WB12 and TiB12 at the ground state is 29.9 GPa and 43.2 GPa, respectively, indicating that TiB12 is a potential superhard material. With increasing pressure, the calculated elastic modulus of WB12 and TiB12 increases gradually. The calculated electronic structure shows that the high Vickers hardness and elastic properties of WB12 and TiB12 derive from the 3D network B–B covalent bonds. In addition, the calculated Debye temperature at the ground state is 927 K for WB12 and 1339 K for TiB12, respectively. With increasing pressure, the calculated Debye temperature of WB12 and TiB12 increases gradually. Our work shows that TiB12 not only exhibits high hardness but also shows better thermodynamic properties in comparison with WB12.
The dipeptide DL-methionyl-DL-Methionine (Met-Met) has extremely low water solubility and better absorption than other methionine sources (such as DL-methionine and L-methionine) available in the market. Therefore, six diets (D1, D2, D3, D4, D5 and D6) containing 0 %, 0.07%, 0.15%, 0.21%, 0.28% and 0.38% Met-Met were formulated to investigate the effects of Met-Met on Oreochromis niloticus. The results indicated that percent weight gain and specific growth rate of fish fed with D2 and D3 diets were higher than those fed with D1, D4-D6 diets. The levels of total essential amino acid in whole body of fish fed with D3 and D4 diets were significantly higher than those fed the D1 diet. Superoxide dismutase activity and malondialdehyde content were no significant difference in fed the diet with or without Met-Met supplementation. Majority of reads derived from the fish intestines belonged to members of Fusobacteria, followed by Bacteroidetes, Proteobacteria. Diversity of intestinal microbiota and total antioxidant capacity in fish fed with D3 diet was significantly higher than that of other groups. Since due to the growth results the authors conclude the optimal proportion of Met was 0.61%, and the addition of Met-Met was 0.15% in O. niloticus.
Novel NiMoO4-integrated electrode materials were successfully prepared by solvothermal method using Na2MoO4·2H2O and NiSO4·6H2O as main raw materials, water, and ethanol as solvents. The morphology, phase, and structure of the as-prepared materials were characterized by SEM, XRD, Raman, and FT-IR. The electrochemical properties of the materials in supercapacitors were investigated by cyclic voltammetry, constant current charge–discharge, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy techniques. The effects of volume ratio of water to ethanol (W/E) in solvent on the properties of the product were studied. The results show that the pure phase monoclinic crystal NiMoO4 product can be obtained when the W/E is 2:1. The diameter and length are 0.1–0.3 µm and approximately 3 µm, respectively. As an active material for supercapacitor, the NiMoO4 nanorods material delivered a discharge specific capacitance of 672, 498, and 396 F/g at a current density of 4, 7, and 10 A/g, respectively. The discharge specific capacitance slightly decreased from 815 to 588 F/g with a retention of 72% after 1000 cycles at a current density of 1 A/g. With these superior capacitance properties, the novel NiMoO4 integrated electrode materials could be considered as promising material for supercapacitors.
The present study was undertaken to investigate the antiparasitic activity of extracellular products of Streptomyces albus. Bioactivity-guided isolation of chloroform extracts affording a compound showing potent activity. The structure of the compound was elucidated as salinomycin (SAL) by EI-MS, 1H NMR and 13C NMR. In vitro test showed that SAL has potent anti-parasitic efficacy against theronts of Ichthyophthirius multifiliis with 10 min, 1, 2, 3 and 4 h (effective concentration) EC50 (95% confidence intervals) of 2.12 (2.22–2.02), 1.93 (1.98–1.88), 1.42 (1.47–1.37), 1.35 (1.41–1.31) and 1.11 (1.21–1.01) mg L−1. In vitro antiparasitic assays revealed that SAL could be 100% effective against I. multifiliis encysted tomonts at a concentration of 8.0 mg L−1. In vivo test demonstrated that the number of I. multifiliis trophonts on Erythroculter ilishaeformis treated with SAL was markedly lower than that of control group at 10 days after exposed to theronts (P < 0.05). In the control group, 80% mortality was observed owing to heavy I. multifiliis infection at 10 days. On the other hand, only 30.0% mortality was recorded in the group treated with 8.0 mg L−1 SAL. The median lethal dose (LD50) of SAL for E. ilishaeformis was 32.9 mg L−1.
We report the utility of whole-genome sequencing (WGS) conducted in a clinically relevant time frame (ie, sufficient for guiding management decision), in managing a Streptococcus pyogenes outbreak, and present a comparison of its performance with emm typing.
A 2,000-bed tertiary-care psychiatric hospital.
Active surveillance was conducted to identify new cases of S. pyogenes. WGS guided targeted epidemiological investigations, and infection control measures were implemented. Single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)–based genome phylogeny, emm typing, and multilocus sequence typing (MLST) were performed. We compared the ability of WGS and emm typing to correctly identify person-to-person transmission and to guide the management of the outbreak.
The study included 204 patients and 152 staff. We identified 35 patients and 2 staff members with S. pyogenes. WGS revealed polyclonal S. pyogenes infections with 3 genetically distinct phylogenetic clusters (C1–C3). Cluster C1 isolates were all emm type 4, sequence type 915 and had pairwise SNP differences of 0–5, which suggested recent person-to-person transmissions. Epidemiological investigation revealed that cluster C1 was mediated by dermal colonization and transmission of S. pyogenes in a male residential ward. Clusters C2 and C3 were genomically diverse, with pairwise SNP differences of 21–45 and 26–58, and emm 11 and mostly emm120, respectively. Clusters C2 and C3, which may have been considered person-to-person transmissions by emm typing, were shown by WGS to be unlikely by integrating pairwise SNP differences with epidemiology.
WGS had higher resolution than emm typing in identifying clusters with recent and ongoing person-to-person transmissions, which allowed implementation of targeted intervention to control the outbreak.
Femtosecond laser direct writing (FsLDW) in transparent materials is a laser-based precise three-dimensional (3D) micro/nanofabrication method that has shown great potential for applications. The advantages of FsLDW originate in the nonlinear nature of absorption in the multiphoton absorption process. Over the past few years, transparent material micro/nanofabrication using FsLDW has seen several developments in materials and applications. Specifically, two-photon polymerization has been widely used as a precision direct-writing process for fabrication of polymeric 3D micro/nanostructures; internal/surface ablation of polymer 3D structures based on multiphoton absorption has been demonstrated and developed as a promising subtractive manufacturing technique; and femtosecond laser multiphoton modification in glass has been intensively studied for refractive-index change and generation of nanogratings and microvoids. This article describes the latest research on FsLDW in polymers and glasses with specific applications for large-dimension fabrication, microelectromechanical systems, microphotonics, and microfluidics.
For the first time, we estimated the population sizes of two swan species and four goose species from observations during the non-breeding period in East Asia. Based on combined counts from South Korea, Japan and China, we estimated the total abundance of these species as follows: 42,000–47,000 Whooper Swans Cygnus cygnus; 99,000–141,000 Tundra Swans C. columbianus bewickii; 56,000–98,000 Swan Geese Anser cygnoides; 157,000–194,000 Bean Geese A. fabalis; 231,000–283,000 Greater White-fronted Geese A. albifrons; and 14,000–19,000 Lesser White-fronted Geese A. erythropus. While the count data from Korea and Japan provide a good reflection of numbers present, there remain gaps in the coverage in China, which particularly affect the precision of the estimates for Bean, Greater and Lesser White-fronted Geese as well as Tundra Swans. Lack of subspecies distinction of Bean Geese in China until recently also limits our ability to determine the true status of A. f. middendorffii there, but all indications suggest this population numbers around 18,000 individuals and is in need of urgent attention. The small, highly concentrated and declining numbers of Lesser White-fronted Geese give concern for this species, as do the major declines in Greater White-fronted Geese in China (in contrast to numbers in Japan and Korea, considered to be a separate flyway). In the absence of any demographic data, it is impossible to interpret the causes of these changes in abundance. Improved monitoring, including demographic and tracking studies are required to provide the necessary information to retain populations in favourable conservation status.
In this paper, the recent studies of laboratory astrophysics with strong magnetic fields in China have been reviewed. On the Shenguang-II laser facility of the National Laboratory on High-Power Lasers and Physics, a laser-driven strong magnetic field up to 200 T has been achieved. The experiment was performed to model the interaction of solar wind with dayside magnetosphere. Also the low beta plasma magnetic reconnection (MR) has been studied. Theoretically, the model has been developed to deal with the atomic structures and processes in strong magnetic field. Also the study of shock wave generation in the magnetized counter-streaming plasmas is introduced.
In this study, the effects of HA combined with NPK fertilizer (HANPK) on root growth and leaf quality of tobacco plants were investigated in tobacco fields. Results indicated that the application of HA alone did not enhance the growth of tobacco obviously, while HANPK increased tobacco biomass by 36.9% and stimulated the growth of lateral roots significantly. The number of the second-order lateral roots was increased by 89.3% compared with the control. Furthermore, HANPK raised the ratio of root biomass in 0–20 cm soil layer over the whole soil layer and increased the proportion of fine roots over the total roots. Tobacco leaf yield, output value, and benefit of HANPK were 12.2%, 29.4% and 35.5% higher than those of the control, respectively. The above results suggest that the combined application of HA and NPK chemical fertilizer is an economical pattern for improving tobacco growth.
The effect of erosion speed on the interaction between erosion and corrosion of the Fe–3.5 wt% B alloy in a flowing zinc bath has been investigated using a rotating-disk technique. The total erosion–corrosion rate increases rapidly, whereas the pure erosion rate tends to increase linearly with an increase in erosion speed and with low damage. The increase in total erosion–corrosion rate is strongly dependent on erosion–corrosion interaction. During the erosion–corrosion process, the severe corrosion reaction roughens the surface by forming a loose corrosion layer and cracks in the anticaustic Fe2B skeleton, which eventually facilitates erosion. The micromechanical scouring effect of liquid zinc worsens corrosion by accelerating the removal of corrosion products and causing spallation of anticaustic Fe2B. An increase in erosion speed intensifies the micromechanical scouring effect of flowing zinc significantly. A strong erosion–corrosion interaction occurs at high erosion speed, which leads to a greater material loss rate.
The mitochondrial genome is maternally inherited in animals, despite the fact that paternal mitochondria enter oocytes during fertilization. Autophagy and ubiquitin-mediated degradation are responsible for the elimination of paternal mitochondria in Caenorhabditis elegans; however, the involvement of these two processes in the degradation of paternal mitochondria in mammals is not well understood. We investigated the localization patterns of light chain 3 (LC3) and ubiquitin in mouse and porcine embryos during preimplantation development. We found that LC3 and ubiquitin localized to the spermatozoon midpiece at 3 h post-fertilization, and that both proteins were colocalized with paternal mitochondria and removed upon fertilization during the 4-cell stage in mouse and the zygote stage in porcine embryos. Sporadic paternal mitochondria were present beyond the morula stage in the mouse, and paternal mitochondria were restricted to one blastomere of 4-cell embryos. An autophagy inhibitor, 3-methyladenine (3-MA), did not affect the distribution of paternal mitochondria compared with the positive control, while an autophagy inducer, rapamycin, accelerated the removal of paternal mitochondria compared with the control. After the intracytoplasmic injection of intact spermatozoon into mouse oocytes, LC3 and ubiquitin localized to the spermatozoon midpiece, but remnants of undegraded paternal mitochondria were retained until the blastocyst stage. Our results show that paternal mitochondria colocalize with autophagy receptors and ubiquitin and are removed after in vitro fertilization, but some remnants of sperm mitochondrial sheath may persist up to morula stage after intracytoplasmic spermatozoon injection (ICSI).
Plasma etching process plays a critical role in semiconductor manufacturing. Because
physical and chemical mechanisms involved in plasma etching are extremely complicated,
models supporting process control are difficult to construct. This paper uses a 35-run
D-optimal design to efficiently collect data under well planned conditions for important
controllable variables such as power, pressure, electrode gap and gas flows of
Cl2 and He and
the response, etching rate, for building an empirical underlying model. Since the
relationship between the control and response variables could be highly nonlinear, a
generalized regression neural network is used to select important model variables and
their combination effects and to fit the model. Compared with the response surface
methodology, the proposed method has better prediction performance in training and testing
samples. A success application of the model to control the plasma etching process
demonstrates the effectiveness of the methods.
Early identification of patients with bipolar disorder during their first depressive episode is beneficial to the outcome of the disorder and treatment, but traditionally this has been a great challenge to clinicians. Recently, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) has been suggested to be involved in the pathophysiology of bipolar disorder and major depressive disorder (MDD), but it is not clear whether BDNF levels can be used to predict bipolar disorder among patients in their first major depressive episode.
To explore whether BDNF levels can differentiate between MDD and bipolar disorder in the first depressive episode.
A total of 203 patients with a first major depressive episode as well as 167 healthy controls were recruited. After 3 years of bi-annual follow-up, 164 patients with a major depressive episode completed the study, and of these, 21 were identified as having bipolar disorder and 143 patients were diagnosed as having MDD. BDNF gene expression and plasma levels at baseline were compared among the bipolar disorder, MDD and healthy control groups. Logistic regression and decision tree methods were applied to determine the best model for predicting bipolar disorder at the first depressive episode.
At baseline, patients in the bipolar disorder and MDD groups showed lower BDNF mRNA levels (P<0.001 and P = 0.02 respectively) and plasma levels (P = 0.002 and P = 0.01 respectively) compared with healthy controls. Similarly, BDNF levels in the bipolar disorder group were lower than those in the MDD group. These results showed that the best model for predicting bipolar disorder during a first depressive episode was a combination of BDNF mRNA levels with plasma BDNF levels (receiver operating characteristics (ROC) = 0.80, logistic regression; ROC = 0.84, decision tree).
Our findings suggest that BDNF levels may serve as a potential differential diagnostic biomarker for bipolar disorder in a patient's first depressive episode.
A joint diagnostic system was established for the diagnosis of laser-driven shock wave experiments. The system has high temporal resolution (time resolution ~12 ps) and high spatial resolution (spatial resolution ~7 μm) and fits for diagnostics of the experiment with small sample size and short time physical process. The joint diagnostic system was applied for shock wave measurement on the Shenguang-II laser facility. The passive shock breakout signal and active diagnostic signal were simultaneously obtained. The temporal measurement reliability of the system was verified using a multi-layered target. The experimental results show that the two measurement results were consistent.
Polycrystalline Sr3Sm2(BO3)4 borate has been synthesized through a solid-state reaction, and the title compound is stable in air and water. Its crystal structure was investigated from powder X-ray diffraction data using the Rietveld method. The fundamental building units of the crystal Sr3Sm2(BO3)4 are isolated BO3 anionic groups, distorted Sm–O polyhedra, and irregular Sr–O polyhedra, with the crystal structure isostructural to Sr3Nd2(BO3)4. The infrared spectrum of Sr3Sm2(BO3)4 has been measured, which is consistent with the crystallographic study. According to diffuse reflection measurement of Sr3Sm2(BO3)4 powders, the absorption edge is in the deep UV range and UV-vis transmittance is very high. Phosphor Sr3Sm2(BO3)4 exhibits an orange-red emission.
The Lower Yangtze foreland basin is situated to the northwest of the early Palaeozoic Wuyi–Yunkai orogen in South China. To demonstrate its provenance history and the denudation of the orogen, seven sandstone samples were collected from the upper Ordovician to Silurian strata for U–Pb dating. The zircons show a broad range of ages that can be linked with the ages of specific units in the Wuyi–Yunkai orogen. The zircon spectra in the late Ordovician samples are similar to those in the pre-orogenic strata, suggesting a recycled source. The dominant age population of 880–740 Ma in the early Llandovery samples indicates that the middle Neoproterozoic volcanic rocks were the primary source. A significant age population of 460–425 Ma in the late Llandovery to Wenlock samples reflects the fact that the synorogenic magmatic and metamorphic rocks were exposed to provide detritus. The youngest zircons from the uppermost Silurian strata yield an age of 425 Ma, which approximates the inferred depositional age. This age, together with available biostratigraphic data, indicates that the foreland basin was formed 448–425 Ma ago. We surmise a possible link between the Wuyi–Yunkai orogen and the Appalachian–Caledonian orogen based on the geological constraints and palaeomagnetic data.
To date, there has been little improvement in cryopreservation of bull sperm due to lack of understanding of the freezing mechanisms. Therefore, this study set out to investigate expression levels of fertility-associated proteins in bull sperm, and in particular the relationship between the 90 kDa heat-shock protein (HSP90) and the sperm characteristics after freezing–thawing. Semen was collected from eight Holstein bulls by artificial vagina. Characteristics of these fresh semen, including sperm motility, morphology, viability and concentration, were evaluated. Sperm quality was also assessed after freezing–thawing. Eight ejaculates were divided into two groups based on freezing resistance and sperm motility. Sperm proteins were extracted and sodium dodecyl sulphate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) analysis and western blotting were performed. SDS-PAGE results showed that there was substantial diversity in 90 kDa proteins in the frozen–thawed sperm and HSP90 was confirmed as one of the 90 kDa proteins by western blot. This study indicated that HSP90 expression correlated positively with sperm quality. The amount of expressed 90 kDa proteins in the high freezing resistance (HFR) group was significantly higher than that in the low freezing resistance (LFR) group (P < 0.05). Thus, higher expression of HSP90 could probably lead to the higher motility and freezing resistance of sperm found after freezing–thawing. Therefore, we concluded that level of HSP90 expression could be used to predict reliably and simply the freezing resistance of bull sperm.
The ability of silver (Ag)-containing borate bioactive glass (BG) coatings to improve the biocompatibility and antibacterial properties of titanium (Ti) implants was investigated in vitro and in vivo in a rabbit tibial fracture model. Dense coatings of borate BG (thickness ≈ 20 μm) containing 0, 0.75, and 1.0 wt% Ag2O were prepared by depositing a layer of particles on Ti plates, followed by sintering at 900 °C. The as-prepared coatings had an adhesive strength of 10 ± 1 MPa, and when immersed in an aqueous phosphate (K2HPO4) solution, the coatings converted to hydroxyapatite, releasing Ag+ ions continuously for over 4 wk. After implantation of BG-coated Ti constructs in a rabbit tibial fracture model and of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus-induced osteomyelitis, the BG coating doped with 1.0 wt% Ag2O was most effective for the simultaneous eradication of the infection and fracture fixation. Implants coated with Ag-containing BG coatings could provide an approach for reducing implant-related bone infection.