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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.
To investigate the effects of dietary fibre on follicular atresia in pigs fed a high-fat diet, we fed thirty-two prepubescent gilts a basal diet (CON) or a CON diet supplemented with 300 g/d dietary fibre (fibre), 240 g/d soya oil (SO) or both (fibre + SO). At the 19th day of the 4th oestrus cycle, gilts fed the SO diet showed 112 % more atretic follicles and greater expression of the apoptotic markers, Bax and caspase-3, and these effects were reversed by the fibre diet. The abundance of SCFA-producing microbes was decreased by the SO diet, but this effect was reversed by fibre treatment. Concentrations of serotonin and melatonin in the serum and follicular fluid were increased by the fibre diet. Overall, dietary fibre protected against high fat feeding-induced follicular atresia at least partly via gut microbiota-related serotonin–melatonin synthesis. These results provide insight into preventing negative effects on fertility in humans consuming a high-energy diet.
More than 80% of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases are mild or moderate. In this study, a risk model was developed for predicting rehabilitation duration (the time from hospital admission to discharge) of the mild-moderate COVID-19 cases and was used to conduct refined risk management for different risk populations.
A total of 90 consecutive patients with mild-moderate COVID-19 were enrolled. Large-scale datasets were extracted from clinical practices. Through the multivariable linear regression analysis, the model was based on significant risk factors and was developed for predicting the rehabilitation duration of mild-moderate cases of COVID-19. To assess the local epidemic situation, risk management was conducted by weighing the risk of populations at different risk.
Ten risk factors from 44 high-dimensional clinical datasets were significantly correlated to rehabilitation duration (P < 0.05). Among these factors, 5 risk predictors were incorporated into a risk model. Individual rehabilitation durations were effectively calculated. Weighing the local epidemic situation, threshold probability was classified for low risk, intermediate risk, and high risk. Using this classification, risk management was based on a treatment flowchart tailored for clinical decision-making.
The proposed novel model is a useful tool for individualized risk management of mild-moderate COVID-19 cases, and it may readily facilitate dynamic clinical decision-making for different risk populations.
Bile acids (BA) have emerged as signalling molecules regulating intestinal physiology. The importance of intestinal microbiota in production of secondary BA, for example, lithocholic acid (LCA) which impairs enterocyte proliferation and permeability, triggered us to determine the effects of oral probiotics on intestinal BA metabolism. Piglets were weaned at 28 d of age and allocated into control (CON, n 14) or probiotic (PRO, n 14) group fed 50 mg of Lactobacillus plantarum daily, and gut microbiota and BA profile were determined. To test the potential interaction of LCA with bacteria endotoxins in inducing damage of enterocytes, IPEC-J2 cells were treated with LCA, lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and LCA + LPS and expressions of genes related to inflammation, antioxidant capacity and nutrient transport were determined. Compared with the CON group, the PRO group showed lower total LCA level in the ileum and higher relative abundance of the Lactobacillus genus in faeces. In contrast, the relative abundances of Bacteroides, Clostridium_sensu_stricto_1, Parabacteroides and Ruminococcus_1, important bacteria genera in BA biotransformation, were all lower in the PRO than in the CON group. Moreover, PRO piglets had lower postprandial glucagon-like peptide-1 level, while higher glucose level than CON piglets. Co-administration of LPS and LCA led to down-regulated expression of glucose and peptide transporter genes in IPEC-J2 cells. Altogether, oral L. plantarum altered BA profile probably by modulating relative abundances of gut microbial genera that play key roles in BA metabolism and might consequently impact glucose homoeostasis. The detrimental effect of LCA on nutrient transport in enterocytes might be aggravated under LPS challenge.
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.
During the last glacial termination, a warming trend was generally interrupted by rapid millennium-scale cold reversals, such as the Greenland (Isotope) Stadial 1 (GS-1) and GS-2a events. To understand how glaciers on the Tibetan Plateau (TP) responded to these rapid climate events, this study constrained the timing and extent of three glacial events during the late-glacial period. Specifically, using a cosmogenic 10Be exposure dating method, we dated three prominent glacial moraines (PM1, PM2, PM3) back to 15,850 ± 980, 14,140 ± 880, and 12,430 ± 790 yr in the Pagele valley, southern TP, corresponding to GS-2a, Greenland Interstadial 1 (GI-1), and GS-1, respectively. By simulating glacial extents forced by different climate scenarios, the study constrained the temperature decreases relative to present to be 2.6°C–2.9°C, ~1.6°C, and 1.4°C–1.5°C during the GS-2a, GI-1, and GS-1 periods in the region, with precipitation values of 60%–80%, ~100%, and 80%–90% of present value, respectively. Considering information from oceanic and atmospheric circulation, the study suggested that on the TP, the glacial events during the last glacial termination were well connected with the millennium-scale climate events in the North Atlantic region through the westerlies, while the Indian summer monsoon played a positive role in sustaining the glaciers under the warming climate trend.
Findings of epidemiological studies regarding the association between carrot consumption and lung cancer risk remain inconsistent. The present study aimed to summarise the current epidemiological evidence concerning carrot intake and lung cancer risk with a meta-analysis. We conducted a meta-analysis of case–control and prospective cohort studies, and searched PubMed and Embase databases from their inception to April 2018 without restriction by language. We also reviewed reference lists from included articles. Prospective cohort or case–control studies reporting OR or relative risk with the corresponding 95 % CI of the risk lung cancer for the highest compared with the lowest category of carrot intake. A total of eighteen eligible studies (seventeen case–control studies and one prospective cohort study) were included, involving 202 969 individuals and 5517 patients with lung cancer. The pooled OR of eighteen studies for lung cancer was 0·58 (95 % CI 0·45, 0·74) by comparing the highest category with the lowest category of carrot consumption. Based on subgroup analyses for the types of lung cancer, we pooled that squamous cell carcinoma (OR 0·52, 95 % CI 0·19, 1·45), small-cell carcinoma (OR 0·43, 95 % CI 0·12, 1·59), adenocarcinoma (OR 0·34, 95 % CI 0·15, 0·79), large-cell carcinoma (OR 0·40, 95 % CI 0·10, 1·57), squamous and small-cell carcinoma (OR 0·85, 95 % CI 0·45, 1·62), adenocarcinoma and large-cell carcinoma (OR 0·20, 95 % CI 0·02, 1·70) and mixed types (OR 0·61, 95 % CI 0·46, 0·81). Exclusion of any single study did not materially alter the pooled OR. Integrated epidemiological evidence from observational studies supported the hypothesis that carrot consumption may decrease the risk of lung cancer, especially for adenocarcinoma.
The aim of this network meta-analysis is to compare bone mineral density (BMD) changes among different osteoporosis prevention interventions in postmenopausal women. We searched MEDLINE, Embase and Cochrane Library from inception to 24 February 2019. Included studies were randomised controlled trials (RCT) comparing the effects of different treatments on BMD in postmenopausal women. Studies were independently screened by six authors in three pairs. Data were extracted independently by two authors and synthesised using Bayesian random-effects network meta-analysis. The results were summarised as mean difference in BMD and surface under the cumulative ranking (SUCRA) of different interventions. A total of ninety RCT (10 777 participants) were included. Ca, vitamin D, vitamin K, oestrogen, exercise, Ca + vitamin D, vitamin D + vitamin K and vitamin D + oestrogen were associated with significantly beneficial effects relative to no treatment or placebo for lumbar spine (LS). For femoral neck (FN), Ca, exercise and vitamin D + oestrogen were associated with significantly beneficial intervention effects relative to no treatment. Ranking probabilities indicated that oestrogen + vitamin D is the best strategy in LS, with a SUCRA of 97·29 % (mean difference: +0·072 g/cm2 compared with no treatment, 95 % credible interval (CrI) 0·045, 0·100 g/cm2), and Ca + exercise is the best strategy in FN, with a SUCRA of 79·71 % (mean difference: +0·029 g/cm2 compared with placebo, 95 % CrI –0·00093, 0·060 g/cm2). In conclusion, in postmenopausal women, many interventions are valuable for improving BMD in LS and FN. Different intervention combinations can affect BMD at different sites diversely.
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.
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.
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.
Swelling deformation tests of Kunigel bentonite and its sand mixtures were performed in distilled water and NaCl solution. The salinity of NaCl solution has a significant impact on the swelling properties of bentonite, but not on its surface structure. The surface structure was characterized using the fractal dimension Ds. Based on the fractal dimension, a unique curve of the em–pe relationship (em is the void ratio of montmorillonite and pe is the effective stress) at full saturation was introduced to express the swelling deformation of bentonite–sand mixtures. In mixtures with a large bentonite content, the swelling deformation always followed the em–pe relationship. In mixtures with a small bentonite content, when the effective stress reached a threshold, the void ratio of montmorillonite em deviated from the unique em–pe curve due to the appearance of a sand skeleton. The threshold of vertical pressure for mixtures in different solutions and the maximum swelling strains were estimated using the em–pe relationship. The good agreement between estimates and experimental data suggest that the em–pe relationship might be an alternative method for predicting the swelling deformation of bentonite–sand mixtures in salt solution.
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.
A series of optically transparent and colorless semi-fluorinated poly(ether imide)s (PEIs) (III) were prepared from non-fluorinated 1,4-bis(3,4-dicarboxyphenoxy)benzene dianhydride (HQDPA) with various trifluoromethyl-substituted diamines. The III series showed more colorless and higher optical transparency with a cutoff absorption wavelength (λ0) below 370 nm than the IV series based on the corresponding non-fluorinated analogues and V series derived from CF3-free pyromellitic dianhydride (PMDA). Compared with the fluorinated VI series based on fluorinated 4,4′-hexafluoroisopropylidenediphthalic anhydride (6FDA), the semi-fluorinated III series not only exhibited much better optical transparency, but also had better mechanical and thermal properties. The III series had a tensile strength of 79.8–109.5 MPa, modulus of elasticity of 3.0–7.7 GPa and elongation at break of 14.2–26.7%, together with glass-transition temperatures (Tg) ranging from 214.3 to 265.1 °C and temperatures of 5% weight loss (T5%) beyond 530 °C. Meanwhile, the novel semi-fluorinated PEI IIIb was optically transparent and colorless with a λ0 of 367 nm coupled with dielectric constants below 3.2 and contact angles against water over 112°. In particular, the optically transparent IIIa exhibited the best tensile strength of 109.5 MPa when compared with already reported counterparts.
The status-legitimacy hypothesis proposes that low-status groups are more inclined to justify the status quo as fair and legitimate than high-status groups. Although there are some research evidences for this hypothesis, many studies have found the opposite result, that disadvantaged groups are more dissatisfied with the social system. To resolve this disagreement, this article integrates relevant ideas and empirical research in three aspects. First, the conceptual approach emphasises that the controversy is a result of different operational definitions of social status and system justification in previous studies. The second approach, focusing on moderator variables, proposes that the disputes over past studies are probably due to moderator variables, which can influence the relationship between status and system justification. The third approach, based on psychological mechanisms, proposes that system justification theory cannot completely explain the psychological underpinnings of status differences in system justification, and in order to clarify this, it is necessary to explore other psychological processes. Future studies should continue to examine the mediation mechanisms and boundary conditions of the status-legitimacy hypothesis and may try to establish a nonlinear hypothesis. Moreover, researchers should also pay attention to the application of experimental methods and big-data methods.
We sought to examine the potential modifiers in the association between long-term low-dose folic acid supplementation and the reduction of serum total homocysteine (tHcy) among hypertensive patients, using data from the China Stroke Primary Prevention Trial (CSPPT). This analysis included 16 867 participants who had complete data on tHcy measurements at both the baseline and exit visit. After a median treatment period of 4·5 years, folic acid treatment significantly reduced the tHcy levels by 1·6 μmol/l (95 % CI 1·4, 1·8). More importantly, after adjustment for baseline tHcy and other important covariates, a greater degree of tHcy reduction was observed in certain subgroups: males, the methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) 677TT genotype, higher baseline tHcy levels (≥12·5 (median) v. <12·5 μmol/l), lower folate levels (<8·0 (median) v. ≥8·0 ng/ml), estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) <60 ml/min per 1·73 m2 (v. 60–<90 and ≥90 ml/min per 1·73 m2), ever smokers and concomitant use of diuretics (P for all interactions <0·05). The degree of tHcy reduction associated with long-term folic acid supplementation can be significantly affected by sex, MTHFR C677T genotypes, baseline folate, tHcy, eGFR levels and smoking status.