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The association of chocolate consumption with risk of gestational diabetes has not been examined. We aimed to investigate the prospective association between chocolate consumption and risk of gestational diabetes in a large birth cohort in Japan. A total of 97 454 pregnant women with a median gestational age of 12 weeks were recruited from January 2011 to March 2014. Data on demographic information, disease history, socio-economic status, lifestyle and dietary habits were obtained at the study enrolment. Dietary intake during the past 12 months before study enrolment was assessed through a semi-quantitative FFQ. The logistic regression was used to obtain the OR of gestational diabetes in relation to chocolate consumption. Among 84 948 women eligible for the analysis, 1904 cases of gestational diabetes (2·2 %) were identified during the period of pregnancy. After controlling for potential confounding factors including age, smoking status, drinking status, education level, occupation, pre-pregnant BMI, depression, previous history of macrosomia babies, parity, physical activity and dietary factors, women in the highest quartile of chocolate consumption, compared with those in the lowest quartile, had a significantly lower risk of developing gestational diabetes (OR 0·78, 95 % CI 0·67, 0·90; P for trend = 0·002). Stratified analyses suggested that the association was not significantly modified by pre-pregnancy BMI, age, parity, smoking status or drinking status. The present prospective cohort study provided evidence that chocolate consumption was associated with a significant lower risk of gestational diabetes in Japanese women.
A bottom-feed omni-directional CP (circularly polarized) antenna array is proposed in this letter. The antenna array is composed of four elements (two printed ZPS (zero-phase-shift) line loops and two half-wavelength dipoles). The four elements are fed with the same phase and amplitude. The ZPS line loops provide the horizontal polarization while the dipoles provide the vertical polarization. Therefore, omni-directional circular polarization is formed in the far field. The feeding network consists of a 1–4 T-shaped power divider formed by parallel strip lines. In order to balance the amplitude of the feeding coaxial cable, the structure is used in the bottom to transfer parallel strip line to micro-strip line. Besides, the loops and the dipoles are placed on the different side of the network to guarantee the omni-directional radiation property. The measured impedance bandwidth of the fabricated antenna is 0.13 GHz (2.40–2.53 GHz) and the measured maximum CP gain at 2.45 GHz is 4.8 dBic.
Health system reform is considered a tough issue worldwide. Great efforts have been made toward health system building and strengthening. However, it is still unclear which health system is appropriate for different countries. This study aimed to systematically compare the characteristics of the establishment periods between eighty-eight counties of National Health Service (NHS) and Social Health Insurance (SHI).
Forty-eight NHS countries and forty SHI countries with data availability were selected. The establishment years of current health systems and other eighteen indicators in economics, society, population and health during establishment periods were collected. Comparison between NHS and SHI was conducted by descriptive analysis of every indicator.
Most NHS countries were established during the cold war, while SHI had been set up since the cold war ended. The median of gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, urbanization rate and aging rate of SHI were USD 1535 in current dollars, 58.2 percent and 9.8 percent, respectively; compared with USD 1387, 41.2 percent and 4.7 percent, respectively of NHS. NHS countries had a smaller total population, lower mortality rate and elderly dependency ratio, while the birth rate and children's dependency ratio were higher. SHI countries showed a higher life expectancy and lower mortality rate in infants and children. NHS countries spent less in total health expenditure and a lower proportion of GDP. The median health expenditure per capita of SHI and NHS were USD 188 and USD 131 in current dollars, respectively. There was little difference among maternal mortality rates, and public and private health expenditure proportions.
NHS and SHI countries had different characteristics during the health system establishment periods. NHS was established earlier than SHI overall, so that SHI revealed higher levels in economic and social development. Health outcomes of NHS countries were slightly lower than SHI ones, while health expenditure was more in SHI countries. Specific social, economic, demographic and health conditions should be considered when countries are building their own health systems.
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.
A sediment core (14DH-C01) obtained from the mouth of Gomso Bay, on the west coast of South Korea, was used to obtain high-resolution palynomorph, grain-size, and 14C age data to investigate the Holocene sedimentary environment. The results indicated a transgressive depositional process with four stages controlled by sea-level change, as follows: river-dominated fluvial deposition from the early Holocene to 8.48 cal ka BP; tide-dominated tidal channel fill transgression from 8.48 to 8.08 cal ka BP; tide- to wave-dominated tidal channel fill transgression from 8.08 to 6.98 cal ka BP; and wave-dominated marine transgression from 6.98 cal ka BP to the present. Tidal channel filling was the primary mid-Holocene depositional process, accounting for the high sedimentation rate observed. The different hydrodynamics of the river-dominated, tide-dominated, tide- to wave-dominated, and wave-dominated processes following the changes in sea level may have controlled the transgressive depositional process. This transgressive sedimentary model differs from those of other large river mouth areas (e.g., the Changjiang River) since the mid-Holocene, perhaps resulting from the limited sediment supply in the study area.
With an aim to develop novel Cu–Zn alloys with high mechanical properties, in this study, Ni and Si elements were added to Cu–10Zn and Cu–20Zn alloys, and four kinds of Cu–Zn alloys were synthesized through gravity casting. The effect of the addition of Ni and Si on the microstructure and mechanical properties has been systematically investigated. Results revealed that the addition of Ni and Si not only refined the microstructure but also played significant roles to improve the mechanical properties of Cu–Zn alloys; δ-Ni2Si precipitates were formed in the Cu–20Zn–1.5Ni–0.34Si alloy, which obeyed a crystal orientation relationship of (001)Cu‖(001)δ and Cu‖δ. As compared with the Cu–20Zn alloy, the tensile strength of the studied Cu–20Zn–1.5Ni–0.34Si alloy was increased from 373.2 MPa to 776.4 MPa, and the yield strength increased from 242.1 MPa to 718.4 MPa. Operative strengthening mechanisms in the Cu–20Zn–1.5Ni–0.34Si alloy with different thermal-mechanical treatment states will be discussed in detail with the aim to draw a new strategy to develop high strength brass alloys.
The year 2016 will be remembered for its extraordinary events. It started on a promising note with the signing of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement in February 2016, after prolonged years of negotiations. This was followed by the unexpected United Kingdom vote in favour of leaving the European Union (Brexit) in June and Donald Trump's stunning victory in the U.S. presidential election in November. The latter event has now cast doubt over whether the TPP will be ratified. In Southeast Asia the death of Thailand's revered King Bhumibol Adulyadej, the world's longest-reigning monarch, in October, also marked another historical moment. China's launching of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) in January 2016 signalled a new era in global finance, as the new international bank is perceived to rival the U.S.-led World Bank. All ten economies in Southeast Asia have signed on to be members, although the ratification of Malaysia and the Philippines had not been completed at the time of writing.
Within the region there have been several changes that may affect its internal cohesiveness, as well as the region's economic and political relations with external powers. These include changes in political leadership in Laos, the Philippines, and Vietnam, while rising tensions over territorial disputes in the South China Sea have strained relations between China and some countries in the region. The signing of the TPP has also been perceived by some members of ASEAN as disruptive to ASEAN integration.
Amidst such changes, how did the Southeast Asian economies fare in 2016? The main objective of this chapter is to examine the growth of the ten Southeast Asian economies over the year and the main factors that have contributed to this growth. It also discusses the issues that have the potential to affect economic growth of these countries in 2017 and beyond.
Economic Performance in 2016
Overall Growth Performance
Global growth is projected to fall from 2015 to 2016 due to the uncertainties associated with Brexit and the global impact of the U.S. election results of November 2016. Even in the Asia Pacific, the growth rate for the region is forecast to stagnate from 2015 to 2016. Five of the Southeast Asian economies are expected to have slower growth in 2016 compared to 2015 (Table 1).
Outward foreign direct investment (OFDI) from developing countries has progressively attracted research attention due to its increasing share in world outward flows. According to UNCTAD (2006a), only six developing and transition economies reported outward stocks of more than US$5 billion in 1990. By 2005, 25 developing and transition economies have exceeded that threshold, while contributing to 17 per cent of world outward flows. Malaysia is one of the contributors to this phenomenon. In 1980, Malaysia was ranked 11 in the top 15 developing and transition economies in terms of stocks of OFDI, but it moved up to the tenth position by 2013 (UNCTADSTAT 2014). OFDI in terms of flows surpassed inward flows after 2007, and Malaysia became a net capital exporter.
These changes inevitably lead to comparisons between OFDI from developed and developing economies. Based on the investment development path (IDP) theory, there are five stages of development whereby a country transits from being a net recipient of investment flows to becoming a net source of foreign direct investment (FDI). The first stage is characterized by little inflows and outflows as the country may not have acquired the necessary location-specific advantages to attract inflows, except for given endowments such as natural resources. The firms in the country are also at a nascent stage of development and therefore do not have as yet the firm-specific advantages and resources for investing abroad. In the second stage, inflows start to emerge with the development of location-specific advantages such as increases in per capita income. By the third stage, however, inward flows may start to decline due to erosion of some location-specific advantages such as low labour costs and the increasing competitiveness of local firms as they move up their learning path and acquire firm-specific advantages. Outward stock of FDI may equal or exceed inward stock by the fourth stage, while in the fifth stage, the net investment position hovers around zero with inward and outward stocks tending to be of the same magnitude.
This study aims to examine team goal orientation composition regarding the different roles of a leader’s and team members’ collective goal orientation, and the effects of these on team outcomes. Data included 268 respondents from 64 teams. Results showed team members’ learning goal orientation has positive effect on team performance, mediated by team efficacy. Further, for the role of team leader, the results also revealed the same pattern. Study also showed a leader’s performance goal orientation has negatively related on team performance, mediated by team efficacy. Finally, taking both roles simultaneously, study indicated the interaction between a leader’s and members’ performance goal orientation has negatively related to team efficacy, and the interaction between a leader’s and members’ learning goal orientation has negatively related to team performance. This research contributes to the existing goal orientation theory by taking the different roles of team leader and members into consideration.
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.
Low-temperature stress is an important limiting factor to tobacco growth in early spring of south China. In this study, a low-temperature-resistant agent (LTRA) was employed to examine its ameliorating effect on the inhibition of tobacco growth triggered by low-temperature stress. Results indicated that low-temperature stress of 12 °C for 6 days reduced root number and biomass of tobacco seedling by 27.4% and 24.1%, while treatment with LTRA could recover the inhibitory effect of low-temperature stress on tobacco growth significantly. The content of ascorbic acid and the activities of superoxide dismutase and catalase at low-temperature stress were 65.2%, 53.5% and 32.1% of those at normal temperature condition (26 °C), while the corresponding values with LTRA treatment were 89.2%, 88.9% and 74.2%, suggesting that LTRA treatment could enhance the activity of antioxidant enzyme and the synthesis of antioxidant compounds. Low-temperature stress increased the membrane permeability by 84.8%, while LTRA treatment recovered it by 77.4%. Furthermore, LTRA treatment contributed to increase chlorophyll synthesis and maintain the integrity of tobacco leaf structure. Effective component analysis indicated that the complex of ammonium calcium nitrate and glycine betaine was the main effective component of LTRA in maintaining membrane integrity. Its effective concentration was 1.0 g L−1. The above results suggested that LTRA could enhance the synthesis of chlorophyll, activate the activity of antioxidant enzyme, maintain the integrity of cell membrane, and thus elevate the tolerance of tobacco seedlings to low-temperature stress.
A photoactivated ZnO nanomesh with precisely controlled dimensions and geometries is fabricated by using nanosphere lithography process. The nanomesh structures effectively increase the surface-to-volume ratio to improve the sensing response under the same testing gas. And the periodical nanostructures also increase the effective light path and lead to more efficient light activation for gas sensing. With the increase of the photoinduced oxygen ions by UV illumination, a distinguished sensing response is observed at room temperature. In the optimized case, the sensing response (△R/R0) of the ZnO nanomesh at the butanol concentration of 500 ppm is 97.5%, which is 4.54 times higher than the unpatterned one.
Surface properties affect the attachment of micro- and macroscopic marine organisms. The current study examined the settlement response of the mussel Mytilus coruscus plantigrades to natural biofilms formed on surfaces of different wettability. The percentages of plantigrade settlement were not influenced by the biofilms formed on variously wettable surfaces in the short term, but after 10 days, the plantigrade settlement rates decreased on biofilms formed on lower wettability surfaces. In general, lower wettability of the surfaces resulted in the decrease of the dry weight, bacterial and diatom density and the thickness of natural biofilms when compared to high wettability surfaces. In contrast, chlorophyll-a concentration in biofilms was independent of the initial wettability of the surfaces. Comparative cluster analysis of bacterial denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis patterns revealed that high variability existed between the bacterial community on high wettability surfaces and that on low wettability surfaces. Thus, surface wettability affects the formation of natural biofilms, and this variation in biofilms developed on different wettability surfaces may explain the discrepancy in their corresponding inducing activities on M. coruscus plantigrade settlement. This finding provides new insight into interactions between mussel settlement, biofilm characteristics and surface properties.
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.
The mutualism between fig trees and their wasp pollinators is a model system for many ecological and evolutionary studies. However, the immature stages of pollinating fig wasps have rarely been studied. We monitored developing fig wasps of known ages and performed a series of dissections at 24 h intervals to identify key developmental traits of Ceratosolen solmsi marchali Mayr (Hymenoptera: Agaonidae), a pollinator of Ficus hispida L. (Moraceae). We identified where in the Ficus ovary eggs were deposited and time to hatch. We were also able to identify the timing and key underlying characters of five larval instars, three sub-pupal stages, and a single prepupal stage. We provide detailed morphological descriptions for the key stages and report some behavioral observations of the wasps in the several developmental stages we recorded. Scanning electron microscope images were taken.
High-protein diets are popular for weight management, but the health effects of such diets in diabetic persons are inconclusive. The aim of the present meta-analysis was to examine the effects of high-protein diets on body weight and metabolic risk factors in patients with type 2 diabetes. We searched the PubMed and Cochrane Library databases for relevant randomised trials up to August 2012. Either a fixed- or a random-effects model was used to combine the net changes in each outcome from baseline to the end of the intervention. Overall, nine trials including a total of 418 diabetic patients met our inclusion criteria. The study duration ranged from 4 to 24 weeks. The actual intake of dietary protein ranged from 25 to 32 % of total energy in the intervention groups and from 15 to 20 % in the control groups. Compared with the control diets, high-protein diets resulted in more weight loss (pooled mean difference: − 2·08, 95 % CI − 3·25, − 0·90 kg). High-protein diets significantly decreased glycated Hb A1C (HbA1C) levels by 0·52 (95 % CI − 0·90, − 0·14) %, but did not affect the fasting blood glucose levels. There were no differences in lipid profiles. The pooled net changes in systolic and diastolic blood pressure were − 3·13 (95 % CI − 6·58, 0·32) mmHg and − 1·86 (95 % CI − 4·26, 0·56) mmHg, respectively. However, two studies reported a large influence on weight loss and HbA1C levels, respectively. In summary, high-protein diets (within 6 months) may have some beneficial effects on weight loss, HbA1C levels and blood pressure in patients with type 2 diabetes. However, further investigations are still required to draw a conclusion.
Previous studies have suggested that probiotic fermented milk may possess blood pressure (BP)-lowering properties. In the present study, we aimed to systematically examine the effect of probiotic fermented milk on BP by conducting a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials. PubMed, Cochrane library and the ClinicalTrials.gov databases were searched up to March 2012 to identify eligible studies. The reference lists of the obtained articles were also reviewed. Either a fixed-effects or a random-effects model was used to calculate the combined treatment effect. Meta-analysis of fourteen randomised placebo-controlled trials involving 702 participants showed that probiotic fermented milk, compared with placebo, produced a significant reduction of 3·10 mmHg (95 % CI − 4·64, − 1·56) in systolic BP and 1·09 mmHg (95 % CI − 2·11, − 0·06) in diastolic BP. Subgroup analyses suggested a slightly greater effect on systolic BP in hypertensive participants than in normotensive ones ( − 3·98 v. − 2·09 mmHg). Analysis of trials conducted in Japan showed a greater reduction than those conducted in European countries for both systolic BP ( − 6·12 v. − 2·08 mmHg) and diastolic BP ( − 3·45 v. − 0·52 mmHg). Some evidence of publication bias was present, but sensitivity analysis excluding small trials that reported extreme results only affected the pooled effect size minimally. In summary, the present meta-analysis suggested that probiotic fermented milk has BP-lowering effects in pre-hypertensive and hypertensive subjects.
The electrode materials for VRFB should possess higher electric conductivity, corrosion resistance and hydrophilic properties in sulfuric acid. The characteristics of the electrode materials affect the stability and the energy efficiency of VRFB. Carbon materials are the best suited for VRFB applications. In this study, the calcined treatment, acid treatment and ozone treatment were used to modify the surface of carbon papers. The redox reaction of [VO]2+/[VO2]+ on the modified carbon papers was evaluated by cyclic voltammetry (CV). The surface compositions of carbon materials were analyzed by X-ray photoelectron spectrometry (XPS). The experimental results reveal that three oxidative methods enhance the redox reaction of [VO]2+/[VO2]+. The calcined treatments and acid treatments also enhanced hydrolysis reaction. The mole ratio of O/C apparently increased, but the binding energy of C1s and O1s were not chemically shifted in the acid treatment. The intensity of binding energy of O1s, between 532 eV and 534 eV, apparently increased in the ozone and calcined treatments. The Ox treated samples were more hydrophilic than the Oz treated samples. In the Ox treated samples, the decrease of Rct value indicates that was contributed from the redox reaction of [VO]2+/[VO2]+ and hydrolysis reaction. It does not completely benefit the energy efficiency of VRFB. The 5 x 5 cm2 modified carbon papers were used as electrode materials in the VRFB. The voltage efficiency, coulomb efficiency and energy efficiency reached 93 %, 90 % and 83 %, respectively, at a current density of 12 mA．cm-2 at 0.8-1.8 V.
This paper explores whether English–Mandarin bilingual children have mastered discourse skills and whether they show sensitivity to the discourse principle of information status of referents in their speech and gestures. We compare the speech and gestures produced by bilingual children to those produced by English- and Mandarin-speaking monolingual children. Six English-speaking and six Mandarin-speaking monolingual children, and nine English–Mandarin bilingual children (who were more dominant in English) were videotaped while interacting with their caregivers. Monolingual Mandarin- and English-speaking children produced null arguments and pronouns respectively to indicate given third-person referents, and nouns to indicate new third-person referents. They also gestured new third-person referents more often than given third-person referents. Thus, monolinguals’ speech and gestures followed the discourse principle. English–Mandarin bilingual children's speech and gestures also followed the discourse principle but only when they were speaking in English. They produced nouns more often to indicate given third-person referents than to indicate new third-person referents in Mandarin, indicating the violation of the discourse principle. It is interesting that they gestured new third-person referents more often than given third-person referents in Mandarin. Thus, our findings suggest that gesture precedes language development at discourse level in the less-dominant language in bilinguals.