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The objective of the present study was to elucidate whether resveratrol could facilitate the survival of boar sperm during liquid preservation and fast cooling processes. Boar semen were diluted with Modena extender containing different concentrations of resveratrol. Sperm motility was evaluated by visual estimation. Membrane integrity, acrosome integrity and mitochondrial membrane potentials were measured by SYBR-14/PI, FITC-PNA and JC-1 staining, respectively. Moreover, the levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), malonaldehyde (MDA) and total antioxidant capacity (T-AOC) were measured using commercial assay kits. B-cell lymphoma protein-2 (BCL2) content was determined by western blotting. During liquid preservation at 17oC, the addition of 50 μM resveratrol to the Modena extender significantly improved sperm motility, membrane integrity, acrosome integrity, and sperm mitochondrial membrane potentials. Similar results were also observed in the 150 μM resveratrol group during the fast cooling process. Furthermore, addition of resveratrol led to a decrease of ROS and MDA, and an increase in the content of T-AOC and BCL2. These observations suggest that addition of resveratrol to Modena extender protects boar sperm against oxidative stress. The optimal concentrations of resveratrol are 50 μM and 150 μM during liquid preservation and fast cooling process, respectively.
In this paper, the generation of relativistic electron mirrors (REM) and the reflection of an ultra-short laser off the mirrors are discussed, applying two-dimension particle-in-cell simulations. REMs with ultra-high acceleration and expanding velocity can be produced from a solid nanofoil illuminated normally by an ultra-intense femtosecond laser pulse with a sharp rising edge. Chirped attosecond pulse can be produced through the reflection of a counter-propagating probe laser off the accelerating REM. In the electron moving frame, the plasma frequency of the REM keeps decreasing due to its rapid expansion. The laser frequency, on the contrary, keeps increasing due to the acceleration of REM and the relativistic Doppler shift from the lab frame to the electron moving frame. Within an ultra-short time interval, the two frequencies will be equal in the electron moving frame, which leads to the resonance between laser and REM. The reflected radiation near this interval and corresponding spectra will be amplified due to the resonance. Through adjusting the arriving time of the probe laser, a certain part of the reflected field could be selectively amplified or depressed, leading to the selective adjustment of the corresponding spectra.
The oxidation behavior of the selective laser melting (SLM)–fabricated Inconel 718 was investigated through isothermal oxidation testing at 650 °C for 500 h and compared with that of the as-cast and as-forged specimens at the same testing conditions. The effect of microstructure and surface roughness on the oxidation behavior of the SLM-fabricated, as-cast, and as-forged Inconel 718 specimens was examined. The result shows that Inconel 718 fabricated by SLM with the unique layer structure exhibited a better resistance to the 500 h oxidation at 650 °C compared with as-cast and as-forged 718 with coarse dendritic structure and uniform equiaxed grain microstructure, respectively. The influence of the surface roughness on the long-time oxidation resistance of SLM specimens is not pronounced compared with that of as-cast and as-forged specimens. The tiny dendrites instead of grain boundaries are a major influencing factor for the oxidation process of SLM specimens. The surface roughness has more evident influence on the oxidation resistance of as-forged specimens than that of the as-cast ones subjected to the 500 h oxidation at 650 °C.
The lane-level map, which contains the lane-level information severely lacking in widely used commercial navigation maps, has become an essential data source for autonomous driving systems. The linking relations between lane-level map and commercial navigation map can facilitate an autonomous driving system mapping information between different applications using different maps. In this paper, an approach is proposed to build the linking relations automatically. The different topology networks are first reconstructed into similar structures. Then, to build the linking relations automatically, the adaptive multi-filter algorithm and forward path exploring algorithm are proposed to detect corresponding junctions and paths, respectively. The approach is validated by two real data sets of more than 150 km of roads, mainly highway. The linking relations for nearly 94% of the total road length have been built successfully.
Childhoods in urban or rural environments may differentially affect risk for neuropsychiatric disorders. Here, we leveraged on dramatic urbanization and rural-urban migration since the 1980s in China to explore the hypothesis that rural or urban childhoods may differentially influence memory processing and neural responses to neutral and aversive stimuli.
Explore the underlying mechanisms of childhood environment effect on brain function and neuropsychiatric risk.
We examined 420 adult subjects with similar current socioeconomic status and living in Beijing, China, but with differing rural (n = 227) or urban (n = 193) childhoods. In an episodic memory paradigm scanned in a 3 T GE MRI, subjects viewed blocks of neutral or aversive pictures in the encoding and retrieval sessions.
Episodic memory accuracy for neutral stimuli was less than for aversive stimuli (P < 0.001). However, subjects with rural childhoods apparently performed less accurately for memory of aversive but not neutral stimuli (P < 0.01). In subjects with rural childhoods, there was relatively increased engagement of bilateral striatum at encoding, increased engagement of bilateral hippocampus at retrieval of neutral and aversive stimuli, and increased engagement of amygdala at aversive retrieval (P < 0.05 FDR corrected, cluster size > 50).
Rural or urban childhoods appear associated with physiological and behavioural differences, particularly in the neural processing of aversive episodic memory at medial temporal and striatal brain regions. It remains to be explored the extent to which these effects relate to individual risk for neuropsychiatric or stress-related disorders.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
Findings for the roles of dairy products, Ca and vitamin D on ovarian cancer risk remain controversial. We aimed to assess these associations by using an updated meta-analysis. Five electronic databases (e.g. PubMed and Embase) were searched from inception to 24 December 2019. Pooled relative risks (RR) with 95 % CI were calculated. A total of twenty-nine case–control or cohort studies were included. For comparisons of the highest v. lowest intakes, higher whole milk intake was associated with increased ovarian cancer risk (RR 1·35; 95 % CI 1·15, 1·59), whereas decreased risks were observed for higher intakes of low-fat milk (RR 0·84; 95 % CI 0·73, 0·96), dietary Ca (RR 0·71; 95 % CI 0·60, 0·84) and dietary vitamin D (RR 0·80; 95 % CI 0·67, 0·95). Additionally, for every 100 g/d increment, increased ovarian cancer risks were found for total dairy products (RR 1·03; 95 % CI 1·01, 1·04) and for whole milk (RR 1·07; 95 % CI 1·03, 1·11); however, decreased risks were found for 100 g/d increased intakes of low-fat milk (RR 0·95; 95 % CI 0·91, 0·99), cheese (RR 0·87; 95 % CI 0·76, 0·98), dietary Ca (RR 0·96; 95 % CI 0·95, 0·98), total Ca (RR 0·98; 95 % CI 0·97, 0·99), dietary vitamin D (RR 0·92; 95 % CI 0·87, 0·97) and increased levels of circulating vitamin D (RR 0·84; 95 % CI 0·72, 0·97). These results show that whole milk intake might contribute to a higher ovarian cancer risk, whereas low-fat milk, dietary Ca and dietary vitamin D might reduce the risk.
This study aimed to examine the efficacy of combining paroxetine and mirtazapine v. switching to mirtazapine, for patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) who have had an insufficient response to SSRI monotherapy (paroxetine) after the first 2 weeks of treatment.
This double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, three-arm study recruited participants from five hospitals in China. Eligible participants were aged 18–60 years with MDD of at least moderate severity. Participants received paroxetine during a 2-week open-label phase and patients who had not achieved early improvement were randomized to paroxetine, mirtazapine or paroxetine combined with mirtazapine for 6 weeks. The primary outcome was improvement on the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression 17-item (HAMD-17) scores 6 weeks after randomization.
A total of 204 patients who showed early non-response to paroxetine monotherapy were randomly assigned to receive either mirtazapine and placebo (n = 68), paroxetine and placebo (n = 68) or mirtazapine and paroxetine (n = 68), with 164 patients completing the outcome assessment. At week 8, the least squares (LS) mean change of HAMD-17 scores did not significantly differ among the three groups, (12.98 points) in the mirtazapine group, (12.50 points) in the paroxetine group and (13.27 points) in the mirtazapine plus paroxetine combination group. Participants in the paroxetine monotherapy group were least likely to experience adverse effects.
After 8 weeks follow-up, paroxetine monotherapy, mirtazapine monotherapy and paroxetine/mirtazapine combination therapy were equally effective in non-improvers at 2 weeks. The results of this trial do not support a recommendation to routinely offer additional treatment or a switch in treatment strategies for MDD patients who do not show early improvement after 2 weeks of antidepressant treatment.
We aimed to comprehensively examine the association of breast-feeding, types and initial timing of complementary foods with adolescent cognitive development in low- and middle-income countries. We conducted a prospective cohort study of 745 adolescents aged 10–12 years who were born to women who participated in a randomised trial of prenatal micronutrient supplementation in rural Western China. An infant feeding index was constructed based on the current WHO recommendations. Full-scale intelligence quotient (FSIQ) was assessed and derived by the fourth edition of the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children. The duration of exclusive or any breast-feeding was not significantly associated with adolescent cognitive development. Participants who regularly consumed Fe-rich or Fe-fortified foods during 6–23 months of age had higher FSIQ than those who did not (adjusted mean differences 4·25; 95 % CI 1·99, 6·51). For cows’/goats’ milk and high protein-based food, the highest FSIQ was found in participants who initially consumed at 10–12 and 7–9 months, respectively. A strong dose–response relationship of the composite infant feeding index was also identified, with participants in the highest tertile of overall feeding quality having 3·03 (95 % CI 1·37, 4·70) points higher FSIQ than those in the lowest tertile. These findings suggest that appropriate infant feeding practices (breast-feeding plus timely introduction of appropriate complementary foods) were associated with significantly improved early adolescent cognitive development scores in rural China. In addition, improvement in Fe-rich or Fe-fortified foods complementary feeding may produce better adolescent cognitive development outcomes.
Synaptotagmin 1 (Syt1) is an abundant and important presynaptic vesicle protein that binds Ca2+ for the regulation of synaptic vesicle exocytosis. Our previous study reported its localization and function on spindle assembly in mouse oocyte meiotic maturation. The present study was designed to investigate the function of Syt1 during mouse oocyte activation and subsequent cortical granule exocytosis (CGE) using confocal microscopy, morpholinol-based knockdown and time-lapse live cell imaging. By employing live cell imaging, we first studied the dynamic process of CGE and calculated the time interval between [Ca2+]i rise and CGE after oocyte activation. We further showed that Syt1 was co-localized to cortical granules (CGs) at the oocyte cortex. After oocyte activation with SrCl2, the Syt1 distribution pattern was altered significantly, similar to the changes seen for the CGs. Knockdown of Syt1 inhibited [Ca2+]i oscillations, disrupted the F-actin distribution pattern and delayed the time of cortical reaction. In summary, as a synaptic vesicle protein and calcium sensor for exocytosis, Syt1 acts as an essential regulator in mouse oocyte activation events including the generation of Ca2+ signals and CGE.
The effect of maternal folate intake on small-for-gestational-age (SGA) births remains inconclusive. The present study aimed to investigate the associations of maternal folate intake from diet and supplements with the risk of SGA births using data from a cross-sectional study in Shaanxi Province of Northwest China. A total of 7307 women who were within 12 months (median 3; 10th–90th percentile 0–7) after delivery were included. Two-level models were adopted to examine the associations of folate (dietary folate, supplemental folic acid and total folate) intake with the risk of SGA births and birth weight Z score, controlling for a minimum set of confounders that were identified in a directed acyclic graph. Results showed that a higher supplemental folic acid intake during the first trimester was negatively associated with the risk of SGA births (≤60 d v. non-use: OR 0·80; 95 % CI 0·66, 0·96; >60 d v. non-use: OR 0·78; 95 % CI 0·65, 0·94; Ptrend = 0·010; per 10-d increase: OR 0·97; 95 % CI 0·95, 0·99). A higher total folate intake during pregnancy was associated with a reduced risk of SGA births (highest tertile v. lowest tertile: OR 0·77; 95 % CI 0·64, 0·94; Ptrend = 0·010; per one-unit increase in the log-transformed value: OR 0·81; 95 % CI 0·69, 0·95). A similar pattern was observed for the birth weight Z score. Our study suggested that folic acid supplementation during the first trimester and a higher total folate intake during pregnancy were associated with a reduced risk of SGA births.
In this paper, instabilities in the flow over a circular cylinder of diameter
with dual splitter plates attached to its rear surface are numerically investigated using the spectral element method. The key parameters are the splitter plate length
, the attachment angle
and the Reynolds number
. The presence of the plates was found to significantly modify the flow topology, leading to substantial changes in both the primary and secondary instabilities. The results showed that the three instability modes present in the bare circular cylinder wake still exist in the wake of the present configurations and that, in general, the occurrences of modes A and B are delayed, while the onset of mode QP is earlier in the presence of the splitter plates. Furthermore, two new synchronous modes, referred to as mode A
and mode B
, are found to develop in the wake. Mode A
is similar to mode A but with a quite long critical wavelength. Mode B
shares the same spatio-temporal symmetries as mode B but has a distinct spatial structure. With the exception of the case of
, mode A
persists for all configurations investigated here and always precedes the transition through mode A. The onset of mode B
. The characteristics of all the transition modes are analysed, and their similarities and differences are discussed in detail in comparison with the existing modes. In addition, the physical mechanism responsible for the instability mode B
is proposed. The weakly nonlinear feature of mode B
, as well as that of mode A
, is assessed by employing the Landau model. Finally, selected three-dimensional simulations are performed to confirm the existence of these two new modes and to investigate the nonlinear evolution of the three-dimensional modes.
Existing data on folate status and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) prognosis are scarce. We prospectively examined whether serum folate concentrations at diagnosis were associated with liver cancer-specific survival (LCSS) and overall survival (OS) among 982 patients with newly diagnosed, previously untreated HCC, who were enrolled in the Guangdong Liver Cancer Cohort (GLCC) study between September 2013 and February 2017. Serum folate concentrations were measured using chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay. Cox proportional hazards models were performed to estimate hazard ratios (HR) and 95 % CI by sex-specific quartile of serum folate. Compared with patients in the third quartile of serum folate, patients in the lowest quartile had significantly inferior LCSS (HR = 1·48; 95 % CI 1·05, 2·09) and OS (HR = 1·43; 95 % CI 1·03, 1·99) after adjustment for non-clinical and clinical prognostic factors. The associations were not significantly modified by sex, age at diagnosis, alcohol drinking status and Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) stage. However, there were statistically significant interactions on both multiplicative and additive scale between serum folate and C-reactive protein (CRP) levels or smoking status and the associations of lower serum folate with worse LCSS and OS were only evident among patients with CRP > 3·0 mg/l or current smokers. An inverse association with LCSS were also observed among patients with liver damage score ≥3. These results suggest that lower serum folate concentrations at diagnosis are independently associated with worse HCC survival, most prominently among patients with systemic inflammation and current smokers. A future trial of folate supplementation seems to be promising in HCC patients with lower folate status.
This study examines the effects of two cognitive abilities—language analytic ability (LAA) and working memory (WM)—on language learning under five different instructional conditions. One hundred fifty eighth-grade English as a foreign language learners underwent a 2-hr treatment session. They were divided into five groups based on whether and when they received form-focused instruction. One group received pretask instruction on the linguistic target (English passive voice) before performing two narrative tasks; a second group received within-task feedback but no pretask instruction; a third group received both pretask instruction and within-task feedback; a fourth group received feedback after completing the tasks; and the fifth group only performed the tasks. The results showed that (a) LAA was predictive of the posttest scores of the group that only performed the communicative tasks and the group who received posttask feedback, (b) WM was associated with the learning outcomes of the two groups receiving within-task feedback, and (c) neither cognitive variable was implicated in the group that received pretask instruction before performing the tasks. The results suggest that the impact of LAA is evident when there is less external assistance and that WM is involved when learners face the heavy processing burden imposed by within-task feedback.
Brain structural connectome comprise of a minority of efficiently interconnected rich club nodes that are regarded as ‘high-order regions’. The remission of major depressive disorder (MDD) in response to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) treatment could be investigated by the hierarchical structural connectomes’ alterations of subnetworks.
Fifty-five MDD patients who achieved remission underwent diffusion tensors imaging (DTI) scanning from 3 cohorts before and after 8-weeks antidepressant treatment. Five hierarchical subnetworks namely, rich, local, feeder, rich-feeder and feeder-local, were constructed according to the different combinations of connections and nodes as defined by rich club architecture. The critical treatment-related subnetwork pattern was explored by multivariate pattern analysis with support vector machine to differ the pre-/post-treatment patients. Then, relationships between graph metrics of discriminative subnetworks/ nodes and clinical variables were further explored.
The feeder-local subnetwork presented the most discriminative power in differing pre-/post- treatment patients, while the rich-feeder subnetwork had the highest discriminative power when comparing pre-treatment patients and controls. Furthermore, based on the feeder connection, which indicates the information transmission between the core and non-core architectures of brain networks, its topological measures were found to be significantly correlated with the reduction rate of 17-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression.
Although pathological lesion on MDD relied on abnormal core organization, disease remission was association with the compensation from non-core organization. These results suggested that the dysfunctions arising from hierarchical subnetworks are compensated by increased information interactions between core brain regions and functionally diverse regions.
Direct determination of barrier height (ΦBH) value between Ir and single crystal (001) hydrogen-terminated diamond with lightly boron doped has been performed using x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy technique. 70 nm Ir islands were formed on hydrogen-terminated diamond surface using anodic aluminum oxide. The ΦBH value for Ir/hydrogen-terminated diamond was −0.43 ± 0.14 eV, indicating that Ir was a suitable metal for ohmic contact with hydrogen-terminated diamond. The band diagram of Ir/hydrogen-terminated diamond was obtained. The experimental ΦBH was compared with the theoretical ΦBH in this work.
Discounting rate refers to people’s tendency to reduce the rate of subjective value from delayed benefit over time. The current study investigates the relationship among belief in a just world (BJW), sense of control, and discounting rate, especially the mediating effect of sense of control between BJW and discounting rate. The study recruited 412 undergraduates to complete a BJW scale, Sense of Control scale, and the Monetary Choice Questionnaire. The results show that (1) BJW positively predicted sense of control, (2) BJW and sense of control were negatively correlated with discounting rate, and (3) sense of control completely mediated the associations between BJW and discounting rate. These findings extend those of prior studies and indicate that a sense of control underlies the association between BJW and discounting rate.
We hypothesize that the tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) may play a role in disturbing the effect of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) on the striatal connectivity in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD).
We performed a longitudinal observation by combining resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) and biochemical analyses to identify the abnormal striatal connectivity in MDD patients, and to evaluate the effect of TNF-α level on these abnormal connectivities during SSRI treatment. Eighty-five rs-fMRI scans were collected from 25 MDD patients and 35 healthy controls, and the scans were repeated for all the patients before and after a 6-week SSRI treatment. Whole-brain voxel-wise functional connectivity (FC) was calculated by correlating the rs-fMRI time courses between each voxel and the striatal seeds (i.e. spherical regions placed at the striatums). The level of TNF-α in serum was evaluated by Milliplex assay. Factorial analysis was performed to assess the interaction effects of ‘TNF-α × treatment’ in the regions with between-group FC difference.
Compared with controls, MDD patients showed significantly higher striatal FC in the medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC) and bilateral middle/superior temporal cortices before SSRI treatment (p < 0.001, uncorrected). Moreover, a significant interaction effect of ‘TNF-α × treatment’ was found in MPFC-striatum FC in MDD patients (p = 0.002), and the significance remained after adjusted for age, gender, head motion, and episode of disease.
These findings provide evidence that treatment-related brain connectivity change is dependent on the TNF-α level in MDD patients, and the MPFC-striatum connectivities possibly serve as an important target in the brain.
The natural coastal wetlands of the East Asian-Australasian Flyway (EAAF) are disappearing at alarming rates, leading to rapid declines of many populations of waterbirds in the most species-rich flyway in the world. The identification and assessment of possible alternative habitats that may buffer the loss of natural wetlands should, therefore, be a priority for the conservation of migratory waterbirds using this flyway. Coastal saltpans are functional wetlands that support large numbers of waterbirds worldwide. The Nanpu Saltpans in the northern Bohai Bay of the Yellow Sea in China are one of the largest (290 km2) saltpan complexes in the world. In this paper, we document the value of the Nanpu Saltpans for supporting waterbirds. The surveys, carried out from 2013 to 2016, included waterbird counts in the saltpans (93 km2) at high and low tide and on the adjacent natural tidal flats (57 km2) at low tide. Of the 89 waterbird species recorded, 27 had maximum counts exceeding the 1% threshold value of estimated flyway populations. The maximum counts of waterbirds in northward migration and southward migration in the Nanpu Saltpans were 96,000 and 93,500, respectively, including both foraging and roosting birds; these figures do not account for turnover, so the total number of birds using the site is likely to be higher. The maximum counts on the adjacent tidal flats at low tide amounted to 73,000 and 20,000 waterbirds during northward and southward migration, respectively, and most of them were foraging birds. In the boreal winter, few birds fed in the saltpans, but several thousand fed on the tidal flats. Waterbirds used the inland ponds (2.0–18.0 km from the intertidal area) mainly for feeding both during low tide and high tide and used the nearshore ponds (0.3–4.3 km from the intertidal area) mainly for high-tide roosting. Some species, such as Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa, Marsh Sandpiper Tringa stagnatilis, Pied Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta, and Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus, occurred mainly in the saltpans; other species preferred tidal flats, such as Red Knot Calidris canutus, Great Knot Calidris tenuirostris, Bar-tailed Godwit Limosa lapponica, Eurasian Curlew Numenius arquata, Relict Gull Larus relictus, and Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola. This study clearly demonstrates the joint ecological function of the Nanpu Saltpan complex and adjacent tidal flats as a key staging area for waterbirds in the EAAF, and as such both urgently warrant protected status.