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Hubei province in China has had the most confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases and has reported sustained transmission of the disease. Although Lu'an city is adjacent to Hubei province, its community transmission was blocked at the early stage, and the impact of the epidemic was limited. Therefore, we summarised the overall characteristics of the entire epidemic course in Lu'an to help cities with a few imported cases better contain the epidemic. A total of 69 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 11 asymptomatic carriers were identified in Lu'an during the epidemic from 12 January to 21 February 2020. Fifty-two (65.0%) cases were male, and the median age was 40 years. On admission, 56.5% of cases had a fever as the initial symptom, and pneumonia was present in 89.9% of cases. The mean serial interval and the mean duration of hospitalisation were 6.5 days (95% CI: 4.8–8.2) and 18.2 days (95% CI: 16.8–19.5), respectively. A total of 16 clusters involving 60 cases (17 first-generation cases and 43 secondary cases) were reported during the epidemic. We observed that only 18.9% (7/37) index cases resulted in community transmission during the epidemic in Lu'an, indicating that the scale of the epidemic was limited to a low level in Lu'an city. An asymptomatic carrier caused the largest cluster, involving 13 cases. Spread of COVID-19 by asymptomatic carriers represents an enormous challenge for countries responding to the pandemic.
Witherite originates from the biochemical sedimentation of barium in sea water. Due to the complexity of the metallogenic environment, witherite appears in many morphologies. However, the relationship between its diverse morphologies and its mineralisation environment is not well understood. In this paper, Ca2+, a common substitute for Ba2+, and mixed protein (egg white) were used to simulate the inorganic and organic environments of witherite mineralisation, respectively. Comparison of samples prepared under different conditions showed that Ca2+ and egg white have relatively independent regulatory effects on the mineralisation of witherite particles. Egg white primarily limits the growth of the nanocrystals, while Ca2+ directs their non-isodiametric growth. Results shows that Ca2+ is distributed along a gradient in nanocrystalline witherite particles, with the Ca2+ content being proportional to the diameter of the nanocrystals. The results of this study shed light on the different roles of organic matter and inorganic ions in the formation of witherite and offer insight into the genesis of its various morphologies.
Primary liver cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide. Most patients are diagnosed at late stages with poor prognosis; thus, identification of modifiable risk factors for primary prevention of liver cancer is urgently needed. The well-established risk factors of liver cancer include chronic infection with hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV), heavy alcohol consumption, metabolic diseases such as obesity and diabetes, and aflatoxin exposure. However, a large proportion of cancer cases worldwide cannot be explained by current known risk factors. Dietary factors have been suspected as important, but dietary aetiology of liver cancer remains poorly understood. In this review, we summarised and evaluated the observational studies of diet including single nutrients, food and food groups, as well as dietary patterns with the risk of developing liver cancer. Although there are large knowledge gaps between diet and liver cancer risk, current epidemiological evidence supports an important role of diet in liver cancer development. For example, exposure to aflatoxin, heavy alcohol drinking and possibly dairy product (not including yogurt) intake increase, while intake of coffee, fish and tea, light-to-moderate alcohol drinking and several healthy dietary patterns (e.g. Alternative Healthy Eating Index) may decrease liver cancer risk. Future studies with large sample size and accurate diet measurement are warranted and need to consider issues such as the possible aetiological heterogeneity between liver cancer subtypes, the influence of chronic HBV or HCV infection, the high-risk populations (e.g. cirrhosis) and a potential interplay with host gut microbiota or genetic variations.
We aimed to evaluate the relationship of plasma Mg with the risk of new-onset hyperuricaemia and examine any possible effect modifiers in hypertensive patients. This is a post hoc analysis of the Uric acid (UA) Sub-study of the China Stroke Primary Prevention Trial (CSPPT). A total of 1685 participants were included in the present study. The main outcome was new-onset hyperuricaemia defined as a UA concentration ≥417 μmol/l in men or ≥357 μmol/l in women. The secondary outcome was a change in UA concentration defined as UA at the exit visit minus that at baseline. During a median follow-up duration of 4·3 years, new-onset hyperuricaemia occurred in 290 (17·2 %) participants. There was a significantly inverse relation of plasma Mg with the risk of new-onset hyperuricaemia (per sd increment; OR 0·85; 95 % CI 0·74, 0·99) and change in UA levels (per sd increment; β −3·96 μmol/l; 95 % CI −7·14, −0·79). Consistently, when plasma Mg was analysed as tertiles, a significantly lower risk of new-onset hyperuricaemia (OR 0·67; 95 % CI 0·48, 0·95) and less increase in UA levels (β −8·35 μmol/l; 95 % CI −16·12, −0·58) were found among participants in tertile 3 (≥885·5 μmol/l) compared with those in tertile 1 (<818·9 μmol/l). Similar trends were found in males and females. Higher plasma Mg levels were associated with a decreased risk of new-onset hyperuricaemia in hypertensive adults.
Crop insurance is the cornerstone program of domestic farm policy in most developed countries. Although most countries’ rating methodology corrects for time-varying movements in the first two moments, it is unclear whether using the entire yield series remains appropriate. We use distributional tests and an out-of-sample retain-cede rating game to answer whether governments/insurers should historically trim yields in estimating their premium rates. Despite small sample sizes and the need to estimate tail probabilities, the historical data appear to be sufficiently different such that trimming is justified.
The authors design six alumina hybrid structures consisting of stretching-dominated plates and different space-filling lattices comprised of hollow tubes and perform finite element simulations to study mechanical and failure behaviors of such hybrid structures. The authors investigate the effects of three geometrical parameters on the stiffness and failure of these hybrid structures and further compare their advantages and disadvantages. The authors find that the failure modes of these hybrid structures can be tuned by altering cell unit type and geometrical parameters. Among these hybrid structures, the ones with effective support from the lattice unit cells in the stretching direction exhibit better specific stiffness and strength. By varying the lattice and plate thickness, the authors find that the relations between stiffness/failure strength and density follow a power law. When intrinsic material failure occurs, the power law exponent is 1; when buckling failure arises, the power law exponent is 3. However, by varying tube thickness, their relations follow unusual power relations with the exponent changing from nearly 0 to nearly infinity. In addition, the hybrid structures also exhibit defect insensitivity. This study shows that such hybrid structures are able to greatly expand the design space of architectured cellular materials for engineering applications.
The dipeptide dl-methionyl-dl-methionine (Met-Met) has extremely low water solubility and better absorption than other methionine sources (such as dl-methionine and l-methionine) available in the market. Therefore, six diets (D1, D2, D3, D4, D5 and D6) containing 0, 0·07, 0·15, 0·21, 0·28 and 0·38 % Met-Met were formulated to investigate the effects of Met-Met in juvenile Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus (17 g initial body weight). The results indicated that percentage weight gain and specific growth rate of fish fed with D2 and D3 diets were higher than those fed with D1, D4–D6 diets. The levels of total essential amino acid in whole body of fish fed with D3 and D4 diets were significantly higher than those fed the D1 diet. Superoxide dismutase activity and malondialdehyde content have no significant difference in fish fed the diet with or without Met-Met supplementation. Majority of reads derived from the fish intestine belonged to members of Fusobacteria, followed by Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria. Diversity of intestinal microbiota and total antioxidant capacity in fish fed with D3 diet was significantly higher than that of other groups. Based on the growth results, the authors conclude that the optimal level of Met is 0·61 % Met with the addition of 0·15 % Met-Met for grower-phase O. niloticus.
Immunomodulation by molecules from Trichinella spiralis (T. spiralis) has been widely reported. Glutathione-S-transferase (GST) is a major immune-modulator of the family of detoxification enzymes. Dendritic cells (DCs) are an important target for the regulation of the immune response by T. spiralis. In this study, the recombinant GST of T. spiralis (rTs-GST) was expressed and purified. rTs-GST induced low CD40 expression and moderate CD80, CD86 and MHC-II expressions and inhibited the increase of CD40, CD80 and CD86 on DCs induced by LPS. We showed that rTs-GST decreased the LPS-induced elevated level of pro-inflammatory cytokines of DCs and enhanced the level of regulatory cytokines IL-10 and TGF-β. Furthermore, co-culture of DCs and CD4+ T cells demonstrated that rTs-GST-treated DCs suppressed the proliferation of OVA-specific CD4+ T cells and increased the population of regulatory T cells (Tregs). rTs-GST-treated DCs induced a higher level of IL-4, IL-10 and TGF-β, but inhibited the level of IFN-γ. This indicates that rTs-GST-pulsed DCs induce both Th2-type responses and Tregs. These findings contribute to the current understanding of the immunomodulation of Ts-GST on cellular response and immunomodulation of T. spiralis.
We aimed to investigate the association between plasma retinol and incident cancer among Chinese hypertensive adults. We conducted a nested case–control study, including 231 patients with incident cancer and 231 matched controls during a median 4·5-year follow-up of the China Stroke Primary Prevention Trial. There was a significant, inverse association between retinol levels and digestive system cancer (per 10 μg/dl increases: OR 0·79; 95 % CI 0·69, 0·91). When compared with participants in the first quartile of retinol (< 52·3 μg/dl), a significantly lower cancer risk was found in participants in quartile 2–4 ( ≥ 52·3 μg/dl: OR 0·31; 95 % CI 0·13, 0·71). However, there was a U-shaped association between retinol levels and non-digestive system cancers where the risk of cancers decreased (although not significantly) with each increment of plasma retinol (per 10 μg/dl increases: OR 0·89; 95 % CI 0·60, 1·31) in participants with retinol < 68·2 μg/dl, and then increased significantly with retinol (per 10 μg/dl increase: OR 1·65; 95 % CI 1·12, 2·44) in participants with retinol ≥ 68·2 μg/dl. In conclusion, there was a significant inverse dose–response association between plasma retinol and the risk of digestive system cancers. However, a U-shaped association was observed between plasma retinol and the risk of non-digestive cancers (with a turning point approximately 68·2 μg/dl).
The continental shelf strata provide information regarding sea-level fluctuation and climate changes in the Quaternary period. A 5831.47-km-long high-resolution seismic profile and borehole core (YS01) were acquired to reconstruct the evolutionary history of the strata in South Yellow Sea (SYS) during the late Pleistocene. The strata recorded three transgression events (HI, HII, and HIII) and three stages of paleochannel development (LI, LII, and LIII). Based on the distribution, thickness, and volume of the strata formed in the three transgressions, we concluded that the scale of the three transgressions during the late Pleistocene was HIII, HI, and HII, in descending order. In addition, our data show that the Yellow River extended to the Yellow Sea Trough during the last glacial maximum. The influence of the tectonic framework on sedimentation in the SYS was completely concealed by sea-level changes and sediment supply in the late Pleistocene (~Marine Isotope Stage 5). Since then, the accommodation space, a crucial prerequisite for sedimentation, has been controlled solely by sea-level changes in the SYS. Furthermore, two “source to sink” models of the neritic shelf in the marine and terrestrial environments were established, including high sea-level and shelf-exposure models.
Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have consistently revealed that a variant of microRNA 137 (MIR137) shows a quite significant association with schizophrenia. Identifying the network of genes regulated by MIR137 could provide insights into the biological processes underlying schizophrenia. In addition, DLPFC functional connectivity, a robust correlate of MIR137, may provide plausible endophenotypes. However, the regulatory role of the MIR137 gene network in the disrupted functional connectivity remains unclear. Here, we tested the effects of the MIR137 regulated genes on the risk for schizophrenia and DLPFC functional connectivity.
To evaluate the additive effects of the MIR137 regulated genes (N = 1274), we calculated a MIR137 polygenic risk score (PRS) for schizophrenia and tested its association with the risk for schizophrenia in the genomic data of a Han Chinese population that included schizophrenia patients (N = 589) and normal controls (N = 575). We then investigated the association between MIR137 PRS and DLPFC functional connectivity in two independent young healthy cohorts (N = 356 and N = 314).
We found that the MIR137 PRS successfully captured the differences in genetic structure between the patients and controls, but the single gene MIR137 did not. We then consistently found that a higher MIR137 PRS was correlated with lower functional connectivities between the DLPFC and both the superior parietal cortex and the inferior temporal cortex in two independent cohorts.
The findings suggested that these two functional connectivities of the DLPFC could be important endophenotypes linking the MIR137-regulated genetic structure to schizophrenia.
Schizophrenia is a complex mental disorder with high heritability and polygenic inheritance. Multimodal neuroimaging studies have also indicated that abnormalities of brain structure and function are a plausible neurobiological characterisation of schizophrenia. However, the polygenic effects of schizophrenia on these imaging endophenotypes have not yet been fully elucidated.
To investigate the effects of polygenic risk for schizophrenia on the brain grey matter volume and functional connectivity, which are disrupted in schizophrenia.
Genomic and neuroimaging data from a large sample of Han Chinese patients with schizophrenia (N = 509) and healthy controls (N = 502) were included in this study. We examined grey matter volume and functional connectivity via structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging, respectively. Using the data from a recent meta-analysis of a genome-wide association study that comprised a large number of Chinese people, we calculated a polygenic risk score (PGRS) for each participant.
The imaging genetic analysis revealed that the individual PGRS showed a significantly negative correlation with the hippocampal grey matter volume and hippocampus–medial prefrontal cortex functional connectivity, both of which were lower in the people with schizophrenia than in the controls. We also found that the observed neuroimaging measures showed weak but similar changes in unaffected first-degree relatives of patients with schizophrenia.
These findings suggested that genetically influenced brain grey matter volume and functional connectivity may provide important clues for understanding the pathological mechanisms of schizophrenia and for the early diagnosis of schizophrenia.
Background: Microglia and macrophages (MMs) are the largest component of the inflammatory infiltrate in glioblastoma (GBM). However, whether there are immunophenotypic differences in isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH)-mutated and -wildtype GBMs is unknown. Studies on specimens of untreated IDH-mutant GBMs are rare given they comprise 10% of all GBMs and often receive treatment at lower grades that can drastically alter MM phenotypes. Methods: We obtained large samples of untreated IDH-mutant and -wildtype GBMs. Using immunofluorescence techniques with single-cell automated segmentation, and comparison between single-cell RNA-sequencing (scRNA-seq) databases of human GBM, we discerned dissimilarities between GBM-associated MMs (GAMMs). Results: There are significantly fewer but more pro-inflammatory GAMMs in IDH-mutant GBMs, suggesting this contributes to the better prognosis of these tumors. Our pro-inflammatory score which combines the expression of inflammatory markers (CD68/HLA-A, -B, -C/TNF/CD163/IL10/TGFB2), Iba1 intensity, and GAMM surface area also indicates more pro-inflammatory GAMMs are associated with longer overall survival independent of IDH status. scRNA-seq analysis demonstrates microglia in IDH-mutants are mainly pro-inflammatory, while anti-inflammatory macrophages that upregulate genes such as FCER1G and TYROBP predominate in IDH-wildtype GBM. Conclusions: Taken together, these observations are the first head-to-head comparison of GAMMs in treatment-naïve IDH-mutant versus -wildtype GBMs that highlight biological disparities that can be exploited for therapeutic purposes.
Image stitching is important for the perception and manipulation of undersea robots. In spite of a well-developed technique, it is still challenging for undersea images because of their inevitable appearance ambiguity caused by the limited light in the undersea environment, and local disturbance caused by moving objects, ocean current, etc. To get a clean and stable background panorama in the undersea environment, this paper proposes an undersea image-stitching method by introducing graph-based registration and blending procedures. Specifically, in the registration procedure, matching the features in each undersea image pair is formulated and solved by graph matching, to incorporate the structural information between features. In the blending procedure, an energy function on the indirect graph Markov random field is proposed, which takes both image consistency and neighboring consistency into consideration. Coincidentally, both graph matching and energy minimization can be mathematically formulated by integer quadratic programming problems with different constraints; the recently proposed graduated nonconvexity and concavity procedure is used to optimize both problems. Experiments on both synthetic images and real-world undersea images witness the effectiveness of the proposed method.
Limited information is available on the prevalence and effect of hypertriglyceridaemic–waist (HTGW) phenotype on the risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) in rural populations.
In the present cross-sectional study, we investigated the prevalence of the HTGW phenotype and T2DM and the strength of their association among rural adults in China.
HTGW was defined as TAG >1·7 mmol/l and waist circumference (WC) ≥90 cm for males and ≥80 cm for females. Logistic regression analysis yielded adjusted odds ratios (aOR) relating risk of T2DM with HTGW.
Adults (n 12 345) aged 22·83–92·58 years were recruited from July to August of 2013 and July to August of 2014 from a rural area of Henan Province in China.
The prevalence of HTGW and T2DM was 23·71 % (males: 15·35 %; females: 28·88 %) and 11·79 % (males: 11·15 %; females: 12·18 %), respectively. After adjustment for sex, age, smoking, alcohol drinking, blood pressure, physical activity and diabetic family history, the risk of T2DM (aOR; 95 % CI) was increased with HTGW (v. normal TAG and WC: 3·23; CI 2·53, 4·13; males: 3·37; 2·30, 4·92; females: 3·41; 2·39, 4·85). The risk of T2DM with BMI≥28·0 kg/m2, simple enlarged WC and simple disorders of lipid metabolism showed an increasing tendency (aOR=1·31, 1·75 and 2·32).
The prevalence of HTGW and T2DM has reached an alarming level among rural Chinese people, and HTGW is a significant risk factor for T2DM.
Compared with commercial polyolefin membranes, polyacrylonitrile (PAN) membrane prepared by electrostatic spinning has higher porosity, electrolyte uptake, thermal stability, and lithium-ion conductivity, etc. However, poor mechanical performance has largely limited the application of electrospun PAN separators. In this study, PAN/polyimide (PI) composite membrane is prepared by electrostatic spinning to improve the mechanical and electrochemical performances. Scanning electron microscopy, thermal analysis method, and electrochemical methods were used for evaluation of the electrospun composite membrane. The results show that the composite membrane possesses good thermal stability and exhibits better mechanical performance than pristine PAN membrane (increasing by 1.1 times in tension strength). The addition of PI can increase porosity and fluid absorption rate obviously. In addition, the composite membrane has high ionic conductivity (18.77 × 10−4 S/cm), wide electrochemical window (about 4.0 V), and excellent cycling performance. It can retain a discharge specific capacity of 153 mA h/g even after 50 cycles at 0.5 C. The electrospun PAN/PI membrane may be a promising candidate for lithium-ion battery separators.
This paper presents new LA-ICP-MS zircon U–Pb chronology, whole-rock geochemical and zircon Hf isotopic data for the felsic lavas of the Huili Group from the southwestern Yangtze Block. LA-ICP-MS zircon U–Pb dating shows that these rocks were emplaced in Late Mesoproterozoic time (∼1028 to 1019 Ma). Relative to typical I-type and S-type granitoids, all the samples are characterized by low Sr and Eu, and high high-field-strength element contents, high TFeO/MgO, enriched rare earth element compositions and negative Eu anomalies, indicating that they share the geochemical signatures of A-type granitoid. They can be further divided into two groups: Group I and Group II. Group I are A1-type felsic rocks and were produced by fractional crystallization of alkaline basaltic magmas. The Group II felsic lavas belong to the A2-type and were derived by partial melting of a crustal source with mixing of mantle-derived magmas. Both Group I and Group II felsic lavas may erupt in a continental back-arc setting. The coexistence of A1- and A2-type rocks in the southwestern Yangtze Block suggests that they can occur in the same tectonic setting.