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In this study, we argue that foreign subsidiaries may benefit from the corporate strategies of multinational enterprises (MNEs) in different ways in terms of knowledge transfer and strategic flexibility. From this viewpoint, we explore the relationship between product diversification and financial performance of their subsidiaries under the condition of MNE geographic diversification. Using panel data on foreign subsidiaries in European countries from 2006 to 2011, we find a U-shaped relationship between product diversification and subsidiary performance and the joint effect of product and geographic diversification. Given the importance of transition economies in international business today, we conducted a subsample test contrasting the results based on the transitional (Central and Eastern European) versus Western European countries. The contrasting results provide important implications for other transition economies like China. We validate the relationship in several ways in our robustness tests.
Many components in diet have regulated oxidative stress, inflammatory reaction and even balance estrogen levels. Because these factors are closely associated with depressive symptoms in postmenopausal women, it is considered that dietary factors are able to prevent and control depressive symptoms. On the other hand, dietary pattern that considers the correlations and synergies between foods and nutrients, is expected to have a greater impact on disease risk. The aim of this study is to evaluate whether dietary patterns are associated with depressive symptoms in Chinese postmenopausal women.
A cross-sectional study of 2051 postmenopausal women (mean age: 58.8±7.4 years) was conducted in Tianjin, China. Dietary consumption was assessed by a valid self-administered food frequency questionnaire. Principal component analysis was used to derive three major dietary patterns: “healthy”, “sweets” and “Traditional Tianjin” from 88 food items. Depressive symptoms were assessed using the Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale, and cut-off point of 48 indicating serious depressive symptoms. The associations between quartile of dietary patterns and depressive symptoms were assessed by using multiple logistic regression analysis.
The multivariable-adjusted odds ratios (95% confidence intervals) of having depressive symptoms for increasing quartile of dietary patterns were as follows: “healthy”, 1.00, 0.79(0.49–1.28), 0.62(0.37–1.04), and 0.57(0.33–0.97); “sweets”,1.00, 0.75(0.42–1.3), 1.08(0.64–1.81) and 1.66(1.03–2.71); “Traditional Tianjin”, 1.00, 1.02(0.58–1.79), 0.96 (0.54–1.71) and 2.53(1.58–4.16), respectively.
The present study demonstrated that a healthy dietary pattern was inversely associated with depressive symptoms. On the contrary, greater adherence to sweets and Traditional Tianjin dietary patterns were associated with a higher prevalence of depressive symptoms.
North-east China occupies an important geographic position for understanding the process of Neolithisation in East Asia. Although archaeologists have long debated the trajectory of change in this region, a lack of intensive survey and excavation has precluded convincing interpretations. This article presents research on the newly excavated sites of Huayang and Taoshan in the southern Lesser Khingan Mountains, with a particular focus on the lithic assemblages. Comparative and environmental analyses demonstrate the largely uniform trajectory of lithic technologies across north-east China and close correspondence with Late Glacial palaeoclimatic and palaeoenvironmental changes.
Alzheimer’s Disease (AD), characterized by deficits in memory and cognition and by behavioral impairment, is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that influences more than 47 million people worldwide. Currently, no available drug is able to stop AD progression. Therefore, novel therapeutic strategies need to be investigated.
We analyzed the RNA sequencing data (RNA-seq) derived from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) database to identify the differentially expressed mRNAs in AD. The AD mouse model Tg2576 was used to verify the effects of IGF-2. The Morris Water Maze was administered to test the role of IGF-2 in memory consolidation. In addition, we quantified cell apoptosis by the TUNEL assay. The levels of amyloid plaques and the levels of Aβ40 and Aβ42 in the hippocampus were also determined by immunohistochemistry and ELISA, respectively.
RNA-seq analysis revealed that IGF-2 was remarkably reduced in AD. The expression of the upstream genes PI3K and AKT and the downstream gene CREB in the PI3K signaling pathway was significantly increased in the hippocampus of Tg2576 mice cells treated with IGF-2. The Morris water maze test showed that IGF-2 improved memory consolidation in Tg2576 mice. The activity of caspase-3 was decreased in Tg2576 mice treated with IGF-2. Amyloid plaques in the hippocampus were reduced, and the levels of Aβ40 and Aβ42 were decreased. The above effects of IGF-2 on AD were blocked when the PI3K signaling pathway inhibitor wortmannin was added.
IGF-2 attenuates memory decline, oxidative stress, cell apoptosis and amyloid plaques in the AD mouse model Tg2576 by activating the PI3K/AKT/CREB signaling pathway.
Human innate immune plays an essential role in the spontaneous clearance of acute infection and therapy of HCV. We investigated whether the SNPs in retinoic acid-inducible gene I-like receptor family were associated with HCV spontaneous clearance and response to treatment. To evaluate the clinical value of DDX58 rs3824456, rs10813831 and rs10738889 genotypes on HCV spontaneous clearance and treatment response in Chinese Han population, we genotyped 1001 HCV persistent infectors, 599 participants with HCV natural clearance and 354 patients with PEGylated interferon-α and ribavirin (PEG IFN-α/RBV) treatment. People carrying rs10813831-G allele genotype were more liable to achieve spontaneous clearance than the carriage of the T allele (dominant model: adjusted OR 1.35, 95% CI 1.08–1.71, P = 0.008). In rs10738889, the rate of persistent infection was significantly lower in patients with the TC genotype compared to those with TT genotype (dominant model: adjusted OR 1.36, 95% CI 1.06–1.74, P = 0.015). Multivariate stepwise analysis indicated that rs10738889, age, alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) were independent predictors for HCV spontaneous clearance. However, there were no significant differences in the three selection SNPs between the non-SVR group and the SVR group. These results suggest the DDX58 rs10813831 and rs10738889 are associated with spontaneous clearance of HCV, which may be identified as a predictive marker in the Chinese Han population of HCV.
A compact circularly polarized (CP) rectenna with low profile and high efficiency based on the artificial magnetic conductor (AMC) is proposed in this paper. The receiving CP antenna is a coplanar stripline fed dual rhombic loop with an AMC reflector. The proposed AMC reflector not only improves the antenna gain to 9.8 dBi but also decreases the profile to 0.1 λ0. The AMC reflector also makes the antenna have a harmonic suppression function so the low pass filter between the rectifying circuit and the antenna could be omitted and the rectenna has a compact structure. According to the measured results, the rectenna has the highest conversion efficiency of 76% on the load of 240 Ω with the received power of 117.5 mW. When the linearly polarized transmitting antenna is rotated, the conversion efficiency of the CP rectenna maintains a constant high conversion efficiency of 74%. The compact structure and CP operation of the rectenna made it a good candidate of the wireless battery for some electronic devices and far-distance microwave power transmission.
Proper use of personal protective equipment (PPE) is essential when facing emerging infectious diseases. Proper training methods can promote the use of the PPE correctly.
To explore the effect of the training method of sequential operation training on medical staff to master PPE penetration and removal skills, and to study the memory attenuation after training.
Fifteen medical staff with no experience of PPE operation in a hospital were trained to wear PPE in accordance with WHO standards by illustration and sequential operation method. The training included 30 minutes of theoretical teaching and 60 minutes of practical exercises. At the end of the training and 1 week after the training, the training objects were evaluated for PPE operation. A 2.5 x 2.5 cm fluorescent agent was applied on 6 parts, such as hands, chest, abdomen, and knees, to simulate contamination. After taking the PPE off, the parts of the whole body and the inner layer of clothing that were fluorescently contaminated were recorded. The whole operation process was recorded by video to evaluate whether the operation was correct. The error rates of two operations and the contamination position and frequency were compared.
The error rate of the operating PPE after training was 18.6%, rising to 31.9% after 1 week (Z=16.0, P<0.05). After the training, the average number of contaminated PPE removal was 1.96±1.56, which rose to 2.96±2.03 one month later. The difference was statistically significant (Z=8.92, P<0.05). The main vulnerable sites are the wrist, chest, abdomen, and left calf.
Illustrative sequential operation training is an important means to improve the way for medical staff to wear PPE, but it must be completed more than once to ensure that medical staff can firmly master the skills of wearing and removing PPE.
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a necessary item in the period of unknown and high-risk emerging infectious disease. It is not only the necessary requirement of strict isolation, but also the last line of defense to protect medical staff.
Compare the differences between contaminated frequency and sites under two types of PPE doffing.
Recruited 56 health care workers (HCWs) who worked in clinical to follow the different PPE removal guidelines issued by the Chinese Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) final resolution for preventing Ebola virus. Eight batches of HCWs were divided to conduct simulations of contaminated PPE removal using fluorescent lotion (Glitter Bug Potion, On Solution Pty Lt). Then we recorded the frequency and sites of contamination of personnel after removal of contaminated PPE by the method of visual observation.
According to China’s CDC process, the parts that are easily contaminated during PPE removal are: left hand and wrist (7 times), left calf (7 times), front chest center and left and right chest (6 times each) and left abdomen (5 times). Contaminated parts of the PPE process in accordance with the WHO process from high to low were: right hand and wrist (13 times), left hand and wrist (12 times), middle of the abdomen (10 times), left chest (9 times), and left abdomen (6 Times). There was no statistical difference between the two kinds of PPE piercing and removal (Z=1.177, P > 0. 05).
Under the guidance of the two processes recommended by China CDC and WHO, there was no significant difference in the frequency of pollution after removing PPE. It is speculated that the PPE recommendation processes issued by WHO and China CDC are effective for personal protection against fulminating infectious diseases.
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a necessary item in the period of unknown and high risk emerging infectious disease. It is not only the necessary requirement of strict isolation but also the last line of defense to protect medical staff.
To determine the frequency and sites of contamination of personnel during the process of using Chinese PPE.
Recruit 56 health care workers (HCWs) who worked in front-line clinical to test PPE issued by the Chinese Center for Disease Control for preventing Ebola virus. Eight batches of HCWs were divided to conduct simulations of contaminated PPE removal using fluorescent lotion. Then the frequency and sites of contamination of personnel were recorded after removal of contaminated PPE. The method of visual observation was used to determine contamination.
The frequency of easily contaminated parts included: left hand and wrist (7 times), left calf (7 times), front chest center, left and right chest (6 times each), and left abdomen (5 times). Mistakes in the process of wearing PPE included: clothing touching the ground (20.00%), N95 air mask tightness not checked (13.33%), glove air-tightness not checked (4.44%), protective clothing zipper not checked (4.44%). Mistakes in doffing PPE included: clothes touching the ground or the inner surface is polluted (20.00%), the wrong method of removing N95 mask (14.44%), touching the pollution goggles mirror with hands (12.22%), incomplete washing steps, insufficient time and frequency of hand hygiene (11.11%).
It is necessary to carry out training on PPE donning and doffing for Chinese medical workers.
Seed germination, the first and critical step of the plant's life cycle, is affected by salt stress. However, the underlying mechanism of salt tolerance during early seed germination remains elusive. Here, a comparative RNA-seq analysis was performed using early germinating seeds either under normal conditions or in 100 and 150 mM sodium chloride. A total of 575 genes were up-regulated and 913 genes were down-regulated in the presence of 100 mM NaCl. Under the 150 mM NaCl treatment 1921 genes were up-regulated and 3501 genes were down-regulated. A total of 379 or 863 genes were up-regulated or down-regulated in both 100 and 150mM NaCl. These co-regulated genes were further analysed by GO enrichment. Genes in the categories abscisic acid signaling and synthesis and nutrient reservoir activity were significantly enriched in the up-regulated genes. Transcription factors responsive to gibberellin and auxin were significantly down-regulated by salinity stress. Genes related to anti-oxidant activity were significantly enriched in the down-regulated gene clusters by NaCl treatment. Our results suggest that salt stress inhibits seed germination by activating ABA synthesis and signalling, and depressing GA and auxin signalling, while preserving nutrition and down-regulated anti-oxidant activity. Our study provides more insight into the molecular mechanism of salt tolerance during early seed germination.
From a coopetition perspective, we differentiate between a multinational enterprise's product-similar subsidiary network and product-different subsidiary network in a host country. We argue that the product-similar network will have a curvilinear (inverted U-shaped) effect on foreign subsidiary performance, whereas the product-different network will produce a monotonic (positive) effect. Moreover, we introduce host-country economic advantage and intangible resource of the subsidiary as moderators into the relationship between subsidiary network and performance. Using longitudinal panel data of foreign subsidiaries, we find evidence that when host-country economic advantage is large, and the level of intangible asset intensity is high, the inverted U-shaped effect of product-similar subsidiary network is less pronounced. Moreover, host-country economic advantage and intangible asset intensity both enhance the positive effect of product-different subsidiary network. However, the moderating effect of intangible asset intensity is opposite to our prediction.
Life-history theory predicts a trade-off between the juvenile growth rate and adult traits related to survival. However, this hypothesized negative correlation is difficult to test robustly because many trade-offs are mild, and environmental variables, such as changes in nutrient availability, can ameliorate the trade-off or make it more pronounced. Thus, it is reasonable to expect that the expression of the trade-off can be condition-dependent. In the present study, we first examined the pre-adult life-history traits of the cotton bollworm, Helicoverpa armigera, collected from northern, central, and southern China at different temperatures. We found that the northern China population has a significantly shorter pre-adult developmental time and higher growth rate than the southern China population as a result of adaptation to the decreased seasonal length. Then, we tested for a trade-off between the juvenile growth rate and adult lifespan in different temperature and nutrient conditions. We found a negative relationship between juvenile growth rate and adult lifespan under starvation or desiccation conditions; however, a continuous supply of sugar can diminish or obviate the apparent negative relationship, in which the adult lifespan did not show a significant difference in most of the comparisons. These results suggested a resource-mediated trade-off may exist between juvenile growth rate and adult lifespan. However, the adult size may have some positive effect on the lifespan under starvation and desiccation conditions, which may affect the expression of trade-off.
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.
The distribution of human papillomaviruses (HPVs) must be understood for the control and prevention of cervical cancer. Community-based Papanicolaou and HPV DNA tests were performed on 41 578 women. The prevalences of HPV genotypes 16, 18, 31, 33, 35, 39, 45, 51, 52, 56, 58, 59, 66 and 68 were assessed. In total, 10% women were infected/co-infected by these HPVs. The infection rate increased from 7.1% in women aged ⩽30 years to 10.4% in those aged 50–60 years, and then decreased slightly to 9.9% in those aged >60 years. The HPV 16 and 58 positivity rates were significantly higher among women with high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions (HSILs) than among those with cervicitis/negativity for intraepithelial lesion or malignancy (NILM) or low-grade SILs (LSILs). The HPV 18, 52 and 68 infection rates were significantly lower in women with HSILs than in those with NILM or LSILs. The proportion of women infected by multiple HPV strains was higher among those with HSILs. The proportions of the five most common genotypes, HPV 16, 18, 33, 52 and 58, increased with the number of co-infecting strains. HPV 16 and 58 were the high-risk HPVs in the Shanghai community and should be the focus in HPV screening and vaccination.
Engineering the surface structure, together with the incorporation of a second metal, is an effective strategy for boosting the catalytic activities of Pt-based catalysts toward various reactions. Here, we report a facile approach to the synthesis of Pt–Ag octahedral and tetrahedral nanocrystals covered by concave surfaces. The presence of the Ag(I) precursor not only facilitated the reduction of the Pt(IV) precursor but also led to the formation of concaved facets on the Pt–Ag nanocrystals. Besides, poly(vinylpyrrolidone) (PVP) was demonstrated to serve as a co-reductant, in addition to its role as a colloidal stabilizer. Using PVP with different molecular weights, we were able to tune the size of the Pt–Ag nanocrystals in the range of 9–25 and 14–32 nm for the octahedral and tetrahedral shapes, respectively. The Pt–Ag nanocrystals exhibited 4.6- and 2.0-fold enhancements in terms of specific and mass activities, respectively, toward methanol oxidation, when benchmarked against the commercial Pt/C catalyst. After 1000 cycles of the accelerated tests, the specific and mass activities of the Pt–Ag nanocrystals were still 3.6 and 1.6 times as high as those of the original commercial Pt/C.
The acanthocephalans are characterized by a retractible proboscis, armed with rows of recurved hooks, which serves as the primary organ for attachment of the adult worm to the intestinal wall of the vertebrate definitive host. Whilst there is a considerable variation in the size, shape and armature of the proboscis across the phylum, intraspecific variation is generally regarded to be minimal. Consequently, subtle differences in proboscis morphology are often used to delimit congeneric species. In this study, striking variability in proboscis morphology was observed among individuals of Neorhadinorhynchus nudus (Harada, 1938) collected from the frigate tuna Auxis thazard Lacépède (Perciformes: Scombridae) in the South China Sea. Based on the length of the proboscis, and number of hooks per longitudinal row, these specimens of N. nudus were readily grouped into three distinct morphotypes, which might be considered separate taxa under the morphospecies concept. However, analysis of nuclear and mitochondrial DNA sequences revealed a level of nucleotide divergence typical of an intraspecific comparison. Moreover, the three morphotypes do not represent three separate genetic lineages. The surprising, and previously undocumented level of intraspecific variation in proboscis morphology found in the present study, underscores the need to use molecular markers for delimiting acanthocephalan species.
Chinese tallowtree [Triadica sebifera (L.) Small] has reached unprecedented prevalence in coastal landscapes in the Gulf of Mexico, especially along edge habitat with low competition and abundant resource (e.g., light) availability. This study investigated the spatiotemporal patterns and mechanisms of T. sebifera spread along roadways and fire lines. Triadica sebifera individuals and landscape and community features were surveyed in equally spaced, spatially mapped plots. All T. sebifera individuals were felled to determine tree age and status (seed trees or non-seed bearing trees), and T. sebifera seed and seedling (≤2 yr old) densities and community and landscape features (over- and understory conditions, distance to seed trees) were measured. A zero-inflated negative binomial model was used to evaluate factors affecting T. sebifera seed dispersal and seedling recruitment contributing to the observed spatiotemporal patterns. Introduced into the Grand Bay National Wildlife Refuge around 30 yr ago, T. sebifera trees distribute in clustered patterns along roadways and fire lines and exhibit an exponential growth in density. High T. sebifera seed and seedling densities mainly occurred in sites that are ≤250 m from seed trees or have sparse overstory and high understory grass/herb coverage. With respect to the avian seed dispersal mechanism, the spatiotemporal patterns of T. sebifera spread along roadways and fire lines could be simply characterized by using landscape and community features that influence avian behaviors, including distance to seed trees, overstory tree density, and ground grass/herb coverage.
The antennal sensilla of female Quadrastichus mendeli Kim & La Salle (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae: Tetrastichinae) were observed with scanning and transmission electron microscopy in this study. The antenna of Q. mendeli was geniculate, and the flagellum was composed of seven subsegments. Six distinct types of sensory receptors were observed, including sensilla basiconic capitate peg, sensilla böhm, sensilla chaetica, sensilla campaniformia, sensilla placodea and sensilla trichodea. Sensilla basiconic capitate pegs were found on the flagellomeres, and Böhm sensilla were found on the basal part of scape and the pedicel. Two morphological subtypes of sensilla chaetica were found on the antennae, and sensilla campaniformia were only found on the pedicel. Sensilla placodea were divided into two morphological subtypes that were found on the flagellomeres. Sensilla trichodea were found on the 2nd–6th flagellomere. By comparison to existing antennal sensilla, it was found that sensilla basiconic capitate peg, sensilla chaetica, sensilla placodea and sensilla trichodea were the most common sensilla of the parasitoids of Eulophidae. The external and internal morphology, types, number, distribution, length, and width of these sensilla were described, and their possible functions are discussed in conjunction with the host-detection behavior. Future studies on the host location mechanisms in Q. mendeli will be facilitated by these observations.