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Plasma levels of very-long-chain SFA (VLCSFA) are associated with the metabolic syndrome (MetS). However, the associations may vary by different biological activities of individual VLCSFA or population characteristics. We aimed to examine the associations of VLCSFA and MetS risk in Chinese adults. Totally, 2008 Chinese population aged 35–59 years were recruited and followed up from 2010 to 2012. Baseline MetS status and plasma fatty acids data were available for 1729 individuals without serious diseases. Among 899 initially metabolically healthy individuals, we identified 212 incident MetS during the follow-up. Logistic regression analysis was used to estimate OR and 95 % CI. Cross-sectionally, each VLCSFA was inversely associated with MetS risk; comparing with the lowest quartile, the multivariate-adjusted OR for the highest quartile were 0·18 (95 % CI 0·13, 0·25) for C20 : 0, 0·26 (95 % CI 0·18, 0·35) for C22 : 0, 0·19 (95 % CI 0·13, 0·26) for C24 : 0 and 0·16 (0·11, 0·22) for total VLCSFA (all Pfor trend<0·001). The associations remained significant after further adjusting for C16 : 0, C18 : 0, C18 : 3n-3, C22 : 6n-3, n-6 PUFA and MUFA, respectively. Based on follow-up data, C20 : 0 or C22 : 0 was also inversely associated with incident MetS risk. Among the five individual MetS components, higher levels of VLCSFA were most strongly inversely associated with elevated TAG (≥1·7 mmol/l). Plasma levels of VLCSFA were significantly and inversely associated with MetS risk and individual MetS components, especially TAG. Further studies are warranted to confirm the findings and explore underlying mechanisms.
Disclosing the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD) to a patient is controversial. There is significant stigma associated with a diagnosis of AD or dementia in China, but the attitude of the society toward disclosure of such a diagnosis had not been formally evaluated prior to our study. Therefore, we aimed to evaluate the attitude toward disclosing an AD diagnosis to patients in China with cognitive impairment from their caregivers, and the factors that may affect their attitude.
We designed a 17-item questionnaire and administered this questionnaire to caregivers, who accompanied patients with cognitive impairment or dementia in three major hospitals in Shanghai, China. The caregiver's attitude toward disclosing the diagnosis of AD as evaluated by the questionnaire was compared to that of disclosing the diagnosis of terminal cancer.
A majority (95.7%) of the 175 interviewed participants (mean 14.2 years of education received) wished to know their own diagnosis if they were diagnosed with AD, and 97.6% preferred the doctor to tell their family members if they were diagnosed with AD. If a family member of the participants suffered from AD, 82.9% preferred to have the diagnosis disclosed to the patient. “Cognitive impairment” was the most accepted term by caregivers to disclose AD diagnosis in Chinese.
This study suggests most of the well-educated individuals in a Chinese urban area favored disclosing the diagnosis when they or their family members were diagnosed with AD.
A series of self-assembled WO3–BiVO4 nanostructured thin films with 17, 25, 50, 67, and 100 mol% WO3 were grown on the (001) yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) substrate by pulsed laser deposition method. The microstructures including crystalline phases, epitaxial relationship, interface structures, and chemical composition distributions were investigated by a combination of various electron microscopy techniques including scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and X-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy. The monoclinic BiVO4 formed the matrix, in which WO3 nanopillars were embedded with specific epitaxial relationships. In BiVO4-rich sample, orthorhombic Bi2WO6 was formed. However, metastable hexagonal WO3 phase and orthorhombic WO3 phase coexisted in other composite samples. The thin amorphous layer at the film/substrate interface indicated that the mismatch strain between films and substrate is released. The hydrostatic tensile strain due to thermal expansion mismatch between BiVO4 and WO3 as well as the diffusion of Bi into the WO3 stabilized the metastable h-WO3. A WO3–BiVO4 pseudobinary phase diagram was proposed based on the magnitude of the thermal expansion mismatch and the distance of Bi diffusion, which can be applied to design the microstructures of WO3–BiVO4 heterojunctions and optimize their photoelectrochemical properties.
A CeO2/ZrO2-hydroxyapatite (HA) composite bio-ceramic coating was prepared on ZK60 magnesium (Mg) alloy by using micro-arc oxidation (MAO) and electrophoretic deposition (EPD). MAO coating was done as the basal layer was grown in alkaline electrolyte with the addition of nanoparticles (CeO2 and ZrO2) to improve the mechanical properties of coating. A HA coating as the covering layer was deposited on the surface of MAO coating for improving the biological properties of the coating. The phase compositions and morphology of coatings were monitored with X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM), respectively. Adhesion and wear resistance of coatings were evaluated using a scratch test and a pin-on-disc sliding wear test. The corrosion resistance of coatings was evaluated in a simulated body fluid (SBF) using electrochemical tests at 36.5 ± 0.5 °C. The experimental results showed that the CeO2/ZrO2-HA composite coating on Mg alloy effectively improved its mechanical properties and corrosion resistance. Combining MAO and EPD is a promising modification technology for degradable Mg alloys as biomaterials.
The Myanmar snub-nosed monkey Rhinopithecus strykeri was discovered in 2010 on the western slopes of the Gaoligong Mountains in the Irrawaddy River basin in Myanmar and subsequently in the same river basin in China, in 2011. Based on 2 years of surveying the remote and little disturbed forest of the Gaoligong Mountains National Nature Reserve in China, with outline transect sampling and infrared camera monitoring, a breeding group comprising > 70 individuals was found on the eastern slopes of the Gaoligong Mountains in the Salween River Basin. Given the Critically Endangered status of this primate (a total of < 950 individuals are estimated to remain in the wild), efforts to protect the relatively undisturbed habitat of this newly discovered population and to prevent hunting are essential for the long-term survival of this species.
The effects of stress-aging processing on corrosion resistance of an Al–Zn–Mg–Cu alloy were investigated. It is found that the one-stage stress-aged alloy is strongly sensitive to the electrochemical corrosion. The poor corrosion resistance of the one-stage stress-aged alloy can be attributed to fine intragranular aging precipitates and continuous distribution of grain boundary precipitates. Meanwhile, the incomplete precipitation of solute atoms results in high electrochemical activity of aluminum matrix. However, when the alloy is two-stage stress-aged, the corrosion resistance is greatly improved. Furthermore, the corrosion resistance decreases firstly and then increases with increasing the first stage stress-aging temperature. Increasing external stress can enhance the corrosion resistance of the two-stage stress-aged alloy. These phenomena are mainly related to aging precipitates within grains and along grain boundaries. The coarse and relatively low-density intragranular aging precipitates, as well as the discontinuously distributed grain boundary precipitates can enhance the corrosion resistance of the stress-aged alloy.
The effects of pre-treatments on the precipitate microstructures of an Al–Zn–Mg–Cu alloy are investigated. Meanwhile, the creep-rupture behavior of the under-aged and peak-aged alloys are comparatively analyzed. Additionally, the effects of pre-treatment on the fracture mechanisms are discussed. It is found that the precipitate microstructures are sensitive to pre-treatments. The intragranular precipitates of the peak-aged alloy are larger than those of the under-aged. The precipitate free zone of the peak-aged alloy is wider than that of the under-aged. Some large intergranular precipitates appear on the grain boundaries of the under-aged alloy, and induce the nucleation of microvoids. Eventually, the creep fracture of the under-aged alloy is accelerated. Therefore, the differences in microstructures lead to the shorter creep-rupture life of the under-aged alloy, compared to the peak-aged alloy.
Objective: To study the relationship of Nε-(carboxymethyl)-lysine level (CML) with microstructure changes of white matter (WM), and cognitive impairment in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and to discuss the potential mechanism underlying T2DM-associated cognitive impairment. Methods: The study was performed in T2DM patients (n=22) with disease course ≥5 years and age ranging from 65 to 75 years old. A control group consisted of 25 sex- and age-matched healthy volunteers. Fractional anisotropy (FA) of several WM regions was analyzed by diffusion tensor imaging scan. Plasma CML levels were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and cognitive function was assessed by Mini-Mental State Examination and Montreal cognitive assessment (MoCA). Results: The total Mini-Mental State Examination score in the patient group (25.72±3.13) was significantly lower than the control group (28.16±2.45) (p<0.05). In addition, the total MoCA score in the patient group (22.15±3.56) was significantly lower than the control group 25.63±4.12) (p<0.01). In the patient group, FA values were significantly decreased in the corpus callosum, cingulate fasciculus, inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus, parietal WM, hippocampus, and temporal lobes relative to corresponding regions of healthy controls (p<0.05). Plasma CML level was negatively correlated with average FA values in the global brain (r=−0.58, p<0.01) and MoCA scores (r=−0.47, p<0.05). Conclusions: In T2DM, WM microstructure changes occur in older patients, and elevations in CML may play a role in the development of cognitive impairment.
Introduction: The mortality of Parkinson’s disease (PD) and its associated risk factors among clinically definite PD patients in China has been rarely investigated. Our study aimed to identify the mortality rates and predictors of death in PD patients in China. Methods: 157 consecutive, clinically definite PD patients from the urban area of Shanghai were recruited from a central hospital based movement disorder clinic in 2006. All patients were regularly followed up at the clinic until December 31, 2011, or death. Mortality and associations with baseline demographics, health and medical factors were then determined within the cohort. Results: After 5 years, 11(7%) patients had died. The standardised mortality ratio was 0.62 (95% CI 0.32 to 1.07, P=0.104). The main causes of death were pneumonia (54.5%, 6/11) and digestive disorders (18.2%, 2/11), respectively. Age at onset, independent living, the mini mental state examination score, the Parkinson’s disease sleep scale score and the Epworth sleepiness scale score at baseline were statistically significantly different between the survival group and the deceased group (P<0.05). Across all participants, risk factors for death included low mini mental state examination score, and high Epworth sleepiness scale score according to a binary variable logistic regression analysis. Conclusions: This study confirms the similar survival of patients with PD to the control population up to a follow-up of 5 years. Interventions tailored to potential risk factors associated with death may offer further benefits.
Spinal surgery is considered a high-risk surgery. To improve the accuracy, stability, and safety of such operations, we report the development of a novel six-degrees-of-freedom Robotic Spinal Surgical System that can assist surgeons in performing transpedicular surgery, one of the most common spinal surgeries. After optimization performed using Response Surface Methodology, the largest available workspace of the robot is determined and is found to easily cover the entire operation area. Cooperative control and navigation-based active control are implemented for different processes of the operation. We propose a hybrid control approach based on the speed and torque interface at the joint level. In this mode, the robot is compliant in Cartesian space, benefitting both the accuracy and efficiency of the operation. A comprehensive assessment index, combining the subjective and objective criteria in terms of positioning and operation efficiency, is proposed to compare the performance of cooperative control in speed mode, torque mode, and hybrid control mode. Active fine adjustment experiments are carried out to verify the positioning accuracy, and the results are found to satisfy the requirements of operation. As an application example, a pedicle screw insertion experiment is performed on a pig vertebral bone, demonstrating the effectiveness of our system.
Obesity is considered to be accompanied by a chronic low-grade inflammatory state that contributes to the occurrence of many chronic diseases. Our previous study has demonstrated that histidine supplementation significantly ameliorates inflammation and oxidative stress in obese women. However, the in vivo potential mechanisms are not known. The present study was conducted to investigate the mechanisms underlying the effects of histidine on inflammation in a high-fat diet (HFD)-induced female obese rat model. An obese model was established in female Sprague–Dawley rats by HFD feeding for 8 weeks and followed by histidine supplementation for another 4 weeks. The results revealed that HFD-increased body weight and HFD-lowered serum histidine concentrations were significantly reversed by histidine supplementation (P< 0·05). In addition, the serum concentrations of TNF-α, IL-6, C-reactive protein (CRP) and malondialdehyde were significantly reduced and those of superoxide dismutase (SOD) were significantly increased by histidine supplementation when compared with those in obese rats (P< 0·05). Correspondingly, the mRNA expressions of TNF-α, IL-6 and CRP in the adipose tissue were significantly down-regulated and that of CuZnSOD was significantly up-regulated by histidine supplementation (P< 0·05). Histidine supplementation significantly reduced the HFD-induced translocation of NF-κB p65 into the nucleus (P= 0·032) by reducing the phosphorylation of the inhibitor of κBα in the adipose tissue. The results also revealed that the expression of adiponectin was markedly increased both in the serum and in the adipose tissue after histidine supplementation, accompanied by the activation of PPARγ (P= 0·021). These findings indicate that histidine is an effective candidate for ameliorating inflammation and oxidative stress in obese individuals via the NF-κB- and PPARγ-involved pathways.
To describe the knowledge, attitudes and practices of type 2 diabetics in Yakeshi City and to assess the effect of implementation of nutritional and eating education in enhancing knowledge and practices regarding a healthy diet.
A questionnaire-based survey was conducted with 162 diabetics to determine their nutrition knowledge, attitudes and practices; fifty-four participants received nutritional and eating education for 6 months. Diabetes-related nutrition knowledge, awareness, practice accuracy, dietary intake and glycaemic control were assessed before and after education.
Yakeshi, a remote city in northern China.
A total of 162 type 2 diabetics recruited from three hospitals, fifty-four of whom were selected randomly to receive education.
Among the 162 respondents, most diabetics (75 %) considered that controlling diet was important in the methods of controlling blood glucose. Scores for knowledge, practices and overall KAP (knowledge–attitude–practice) were low, but scores for attitude were high. Participants with diabetes education experiences, practice duration over 1 year or high education level all had higher scores for KAP (P < 0·001, P < 0·05 and P < 0·001, respectively) than their counterparts. After education, patients’ nutrition knowledge, awareness and practice accuracy improved significantly (P < 0·05). The rates of patients with recommended daily intake of vegetables, grains and dairy were boosted (P < 0·05). Various nutrient intakes increased (P < 0·05) but not protein, Fe, Zn and Se. Significant improvements were also found in glycaemic control (P < 0·05).
Diabetics in Yakeshi had positive attitudes, but relatively poor nutrition knowledge and practices. Nutritional and eating education was effective in improving diabetics’ nutrition knowledge and practices, and this optimal practice helped them control blood glucose effectively.
In this study, we report a method to generate a reliable and homogeneous brush-shape air plasma plume at atmospheric pressure for surface modification of PET polymers and biomedical applications. The room-temperature air plasma plume consists of well-aligned and stable microplasma jets formed in the vicinity of the ends of hollow optical fibers at atmospheric pressure. This plasma plume may lead to the uniform and large-area surface modification of PET polymers. The plasma plume may efficiently prevent the heat-sensitive polymers from being damaged and significantly affect the surface properties of treated polymers, such as surface chemical compositions, hydrophobicity and biocompatibility. Compared to a high density of blood platelets adhering onto the untreated PET sample, no adhesion of blood platelets is observed on the plasma-activated PET sample due to the surface functionalization. The reaction processes of plasma-activated species at the surface of treated polymers are discussed based on the obtained experimental results.
To validate a brief FFQ developed for capturing short-term antioxidant intake in a sample of US college students.
A seventy-four-item antioxidant FFQ was developed based on major antioxidant sources in the American diet. The FFQ was validated against 30 d food records (FR) and plasma antioxidant concentrations. The reliability of the FFQ was evaluated by two FFQ administered at a 1-month interval.
University of Connecticut, CT, USA.
Sixty healthy college students.
Estimates of dietary antioxidants from the FFQ were moderately to highly correlated with those estimated from the 30 d FR (r = 0·29–0·80; P < 0·05) except for γ-tocopherol and β-cryptoxanthin. Total antioxidant capacity from diet only or from diet and supplements estimated by the 30 d FR and FFQ were highly correlated (r = 0·67 and 0·71, respectively; P < 0·0001). The FFQ categorized 91 % of participants into the same or adjacent tertiles of antioxidant intake as the 30 d FR. Most dietary carotenoids estimated from the FFQ were correlated with plasma levels (P < 0·05). Correlation coefficients for test–retest reliability ranged from 0·39 to 0·86. More than 94 % of the participants were classified in the same or adjacent tertiles between the two administrations of the FFQ.
The brief FFQ demonstrated reasonable validity for capturing a comprehensive antioxidant intake profile. This FFQ is applicable in epidemiological or clinical studies to capture short-term antioxidant intake or to simply document the variations of antioxidant intake in intervention trials. Cross-validation studies are warranted in other target populations.
NaGd(WO4)2:Eu3+ nanotubes have been successfully synthesized by the hydrothermal method using carbon nanotubes (CNTs) as removable templates. X-ray diffraction, thermogravimetric and differential thermal analysis, transmission electron microscopy, and photoluminescence were used to characterize the product. It is demonstrated that CNTs are fully coated with an amorphous NaGd(WO4)2:Eu3+ layer, which is about 7 nm thick and almost continuous and uniform. After the NaGd(WO4)2:Eu3+/CNTs composites have been calcined at 500 or 600 °C, NaGd(WO4)2:Eu3+ nanotubes are obtained by removing the CNTs templates, and the outer diameter of that is about 40 nm. The luminescence properties of the NaGd(WO4)2:Eu3+ nanotubes calcined at various temperatures have been investigated. The results indicate that the products exhibit a characteristic red emission peak of Eu3+ ions at 615 nm. The emission intensity decreases with the increasing of annealing temperature, which is probably because a few residual carbons doped in NaGd(WO4)2:Eu3+ nanotubes and many oxygen vacancies could promote the intensity of red emission of Eu3+.
Retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells are vital for retinal health. However, they are susceptible to injury with ageing and exposure to excessive light, including UV (100–380 nm) and visible (380–760 nm) radiation. To evaluate the protective effect of blueberry anthocyanins on RPE cells, in vitro cell models of replicative senescent and light-induced damage were established in the present study. After purification and fractionation, blueberry anthocyanin extracts (BAE) were yielded with total anthocyanin contents of 31·0 (sd 0·5) % and were used in this study. Replicative senescence of RPE cells was induced by repeatedly passaging cells from the fourth passage to the tenth. From the fifth passage, cultured RPE cells began to enter a replicative senescence, exhibiting reduced cell proliferation along with an increase in the number of β-galactosidase-positive cells. RPE cells maintained high cell viability (P < 0·01) and a low (P < 0·01) percentage of β-galactosidase-positive cells when treated with 0·1 μg/ml BAE. In contrast, after exposure to 2500 (sd 500) lx light (420–800 nm) for 12 h, RPE cells in the positive control (light exposure, no BAE treatment) exhibited premature senescence, low (P < 0·01) cell viability and increased (P < 0·01) vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) release compared with negative control cells, which were not subjected to light irradiation and BAE exposure. Correspondingly, BAE is beneficial to RPE cells by protecting these cells against light-induced damage through the suppression of ageing and apoptosis as well as the down-regulation of the over-expressed VEGF to normal level. These results demonstrate that BAE is efficacious against senescence and light-induced damage of RPE cells.
A chemotaxonomic study was carried out on the Lethariella cladonioides complex, including L. sernanderi and L. cashmeriana of the subgenus Chlorea, based on extensive field surveys and a detailed morphological and chemical analysis. Only one species, L. cladonioides made up of five chemical races, is recognized. Lethariella sernanderi and L. cashmeriana are reduced to synonyms under L. cladonioides. The presence of a remarkable chemical polymorphism within the population of L. cladonioides is demonstrated. New data on the chemistry and the distribution of the species are presented.