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l-carnitine is essential for mitochondrial β-oxidation and has been used as a lipid-lowering feed additive in humans and farmed animals. d-carnitine is an optical isomer of l-carnitine and dl-carnitine has been widely used in animal feeds. However, the functional differences between l- and d-carnitine are difficult to study because of the endogenous l-carnitine background. In the present study, we developed a low-carnitine Nile tilapia model by treating fish with a carnitine synthesis inhibitor, and used this model to investigate the functional differences between l- and d-carnitine in nutrient metabolism in fish. l- or d-carnitine (0·4 g/kg diet) was fed to the low-carnitine tilapia for 6 weeks. l-carnitine feeding increased the acyl-carnitine concentration from 3522 to 10 822 ng/g and alleviated the lipid deposition from 15·89 to 11·97 % in the liver of low-carnitine tilapia. However, as compared with l-carnitine group, d-carnitine feeding reduced the acyl-carnitine concentration from 10 822 to 5482 ng/g, and increased lipid deposition from 11·97 to 20·21 % and the mRNA expression of the genes involved in β-oxidation and detoxification in the liver. d-carnitine feeding also induced hepatic inflammation, oxidative stress and apoptosis. A metabolomic investigation further showed that d-carnitine feeding increased glycolysis, protein metabolism and activity of the tricarboxylic acid cycle and oxidative phosphorylation. Thus, l-carnitine can be physiologically utilised in fish, whereas d-carnitine is metabolised as a xenobiotic and induces lipotoxicity. d-carnitine-fed fish demonstrates increases in peroxisomal β-oxidation, glycolysis and amino acid degradation to maintain energy homeostasis. Therefore, d-carnitine is not recommended for use in farmed animals.
The regeneration of human tissues with complex anatomy such as gastrointestinal (GI) tract remains greatly challenging since it requires appropriate cell microenvironments with well-defined structural and biochemical cues. In this investigation, bilayer scaffolds consisting of different polymer nanofibers with orthogonal fiber orientations were prepared, in which vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) were encapsulated separately. The bilayer scaffolds have similar architecture to the anatomy of the GI tract and can achieve dual releases of VEGF and PDGF in sequential and sustained manners, which hold promise as appropriate cell microenvironments for promoting the regeneration of the GI tract.
Suicide attempt is an important indicator of suicide and potential future mortality. However, the prevalence of suicide attempts has been inconsistent across studies. This meta-analysis aimed to examine the prevalence of suicide attempts in individuals with schizophrenia and associated correlates.
Relevant publications in Embase, PsycINFO, PubMed, Web of science and Cochrane were systematically searched. Data on the prevalence of suicide attempts in individuals with schizophrenia were pooled using a random-effects model.
Thirty-five studies with 16 747 individuals with schizophrenia were included. The pooled lifetime prevalence of suicide attempts was 26.8% (95% CI 22.1–31.9%; I2 = 97.0%), while the 1-year prevalence, 1-month prevalence and the prevalence of suicide attempts from illness onset were 3.0% (95% CI 2.3–3.7%; I2 = 95.6%), 2.7% (95% CI 2.1–3.4%; I2 = 78.5%) and 45.9% (95% CI 42.1–49.9%; I2 = 0), respectively. Earlier age of onset (Q = 4.38, p = 0.04), high-income countries (Q = 53.29, p < 0.001), North America and Europe and Central Asia (Q = 32.83, p < 0.001) were significantly associated with a higher prevalence of suicide attempts.
Suicide attempts are common in individuals with schizophrenia, especially those with an early age of onset and living in high-income countries and regions. Regular screening and effective preventive measures should be implemented as part of the clinical care.
For wave loads on cylinders constituting a long but finite array in the presence of incident waves, variations in the magnitude of the load with the non-dimensional wavenumber exhibit interesting features. Towering spikes and nearby secondary peaks (troughs) associated with trapped modes have been studied extensively. Larger non-trapped regions other than these two are termed Region III in this study. Studies of Region III are rare. We find that fluctuations in Region III are regular; the horizontal distance between two adjacent local maximum/minimum points, termed fluctuation spacing, is constant and does not change with non-dimensional wavenumbers. Fluctuation spacing is related only to the total number of cylinders in the array, identification serial number of the cylinder concerned and wave incidence angle. Based on the interaction theory and constructive/destructive interference, we demonstrate that the fluctuation characteristics can be predicted using simple analytical formulae. The formulae for predicting fluctuation spacing and the abscissae of every peak and trough in Region III are proposed. We reveal the intrinsic mechanism of the fluctuation phenomenon. When the diffraction waves emitted from the cylinders at the ends of the array and the cylinder concerned interfere constructively/destructively, peaks/troughs are formed. The fluctuation phenomenon in Region III is related to solutions of inhomogeneous equations. By contrast, spikes and secondary peaks are associated with solutions of the eigenvalue problem. This study of Region III complements existing understanding of the characteristics of the magnitude of wave load. The engineering significances of the results are discussed as well.
Multifunctional scaffolds with dual release of small molecular drugs and biomacromolecules have potential in many applications such as cancer postoperative care, which require appropriate administration of anticancer drugs and biomacromolecules in a spatiotemporal manner. Herein, a systematic investigation into the dual release of anticancer drugs and biomacromolecules from the bicomponent nanofibrous scaffolds is performed. Their release behavior is affected by different fabrication techniques and different polymers used. We show that the bicomponent scaffold fabricated by dual-source dual-power emulsion electrospinning enables dual release of anticancer drugs and biomacromolecules in a controlled manner, holding promise for combinational cancer postoperative care.
Hepatitis B constitutes a severe public health challenge in China. The Community-based Collaborative Innovation hepatitis B (CCI-HBV) project is a national epidemiological study of hepatitis B and has been conducting a comprehensive intervention in southern Zhejiang since 2009.
The comprehensive intervention in CCI-HBV areas includes the dynamic hepatitis B screening in local residents, the normalised treatment for hepatitis B infections and the upcoming full-aged hepatitis B vaccination. After two rounds of screening (each round taking for 4 years), the initial epidemiological baseline of hepatitis B in Qinggang was obtained, a coastal community in east China. By combining key data and system dynamics modelling, the regional hepatitis B epidemic in 20 years was predicted.
There were 1041 HBsAg positive cases out of 12 228 people in Round 1 indicating HBV prevalence of 8.5%. Of the 13 146 people tested in Round 2, 1171 people were HBsAg positive, with a prevalence of 8.9%. By comparing the two rounds of screening, the HBV incidence rate of 0.192 per 100 person-years was observed. By consulting electronic medical records, the HBV onset rate of 0.533 per 100 person-years was obtained. We generated a simulated model to replicate the real-world situation for the next two decades. To evaluate the effect of interventions on regional HBV prevalence, three comparative experiments were conducted.
In this study, the regional hepatitis B epidemic in 20 years was predicted and compared with HBV prevalence under different interventions. Owing to the existing challenges in research methodology, this study combined HBV field research and simulation to provide a system dynamics model with close-to-real key data to improve prediction accuracy. The simulation also provided a prompt guidance for the field implementation.
A kind of novel Ni–P gradient coating/stannate conversion film was deposited on AZ91D magnesium alloy (AZ91D alloy) by an integrative method involved stannate conversion and electroless plating. The results indicated that using sodium hypophosphite concentrations varied as 5, 10, 22, 46, and 60 g/L in the bath, the electroless Ni–P gradient coating with typical cell morphologies was successfully prepared, and the structures transited from crystalline → microcrystalline → amorphous were obtained as increasing P content from 3.31 to 12.58 wt%. Furthermore, the corrosion morphologies, polarization curves, and the electrochemical impedance spectroscopy result indicated that the corrosion resistance of AZ91D alloy substrate was significantly improved and the corrosion resistance of Ni–P gradient coating was superior than that of stannate conversion film, which might be attributed to the gradient structure and rising P content with unique function.
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.
Suicide attempt (SA), which is one of the strongest predictors of completed suicide, is common in major depressive disorder (MDD) but its prevalence across epidemiological studies has been mixed. The aim of this comprehensive meta-analysis was to examine the pooled prevalence of SA in individuals with MDD.
A systematic literature search was conducted in PubMed, Embase, PsycINFO, Web of Science and Cochrane Library from their commencement date until 27 December 2017. Original studies containing data on prevalence of SA in individuals with MDD were analyzed.
In all, 65 studies with a total of 27 340 individuals with MDD were included. Using the random effects model, the pooled lifetime prevalence of SA was 31% [95% confidence interval (CI) 27–34%], 1-year prevalence was 8% (95% CI 3–14%) and 1-month prevalence was 24% (95% CI 15–34%). Subgroup analyses revealed that the lifetime prevalence of SA was significantly associated with the patient setting, study region and income level, while the 1-month prevalence of SA was associated with only the patient setting.
This meta-analysis confirmed that SA was common in individuals with MDD across the world. Careful screening and appropriate interventions should be implemented for SA in the MDD population.
Flower-like AgI/Bi5O7I hybrid photocatalysts were fabricated via a hydrothermal method and the subsequent heating process with AgI/Bi4O5I2 as the intermediate. X-ray powder diffraction, Raman, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, diffuse reflectance spectra, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, photoluminescence, and electrochemical methods were used to reveal the structure, elemental content, morphology, and charge separation capabilities of the as-prepared samples. The photocatalytic test showed that the AgI/Bi5O7I composites own much higher photoactivity than pure AgI and Bi5O7I. Based on the result of XPS analysis, the composite is believed to be the Ag/AgI/Bi5O7I system. Due to the suitable band potentials of AgI and Bi5O7I, the ternary system can form a heterojunction structure which works in a Z-scheme mechanism with Ag nanoparticles as the transfer media. The guided charge transfer in the composite prolongs the life time of charge carriers and eventually leads to the high photocatalytic activity of AgI/Bi5O7I. Additionally, the flower-like structure of the composite also contributes to the photocatalytic reaction.
In the emerging era of Internet of Things (IoT), power sources for wireless sensor nodes in conjunction with efficient and secure wireless data transfer are required. Energy harvesting technologies are promising solution toward meeting the requirements for sustainable power sources for the IoT. In this review, we focus on approaches for harvesting stray vibrations and magnetic field due to their abundance in the environment. Piezoelectric materials and piezoelectric–magnetostrictive [magnetoelectric (ME)] composites can be used to harvest vibration and magnetic field, respectively. Currently, such harvesters use modified lead zirconate titanate (or lead-based) piezoelectric materials and ME composites. However, environmental concerns and government regulations require the development of a suitable lead-free replacement for lead-based piezoelectric materials. In the past decade, several lead-free piezoelectric compositions have been developed and demonstrated with promising piezoelectric response. This paper reviews the significant results reported on lead-free piezoelectric materials with respect to high-density energy harvesting, covering novel processing techniques for improving the piezoelectric response and temperature stability. The review of the state-of-the-art studies on vibration and magnetic field harvesting is provided and the results are used to discuss various strategies for designing high-performance energy harvesting devices.
The effects of adding fulvic acids (FAs) to semen extenders on the quality parameters of frozen–thawed goat buck spermatozoa remain undetermined. Buck semen samples collected from six mature goat bucks once a week were diluted with Tris–egg yolk-based extenders. The diluted semen samples were supplemented with FAs (0.2, 0.4 and 0.6%, w/w), cryopreserved, and evaluated for sperm-quality parameters. Addition of FAs to the extender increased progressive motility, acrosome integrity, membrane integrity, and superoxide dismutase and catalase activities and decreased percentage abnormality and sperm malondialdehyde level compared with the control group. However, excessive FA addition (>0.4%, w/w) to semen extenders did not improve the efficiency. The results indicated that FAs could be a promising cryoprotectant for goat buck sperm.
Good education requires student experiences that deliver lessons about practice as well as theory and that encourage students to work for the public good—especially in the operation of democratic institutions (Dewey 1923; Dewy 1938). We report on an evaluation of the pedagogical value of a research project involving 23 colleges and universities across the country. Faculty trained and supervised students who observed polling places in the 2016 General Election. Our findings indicate that this was a valuable learning experience in both the short and long terms. Students found their experiences to be valuable and reported learning generally and specifically related to course material. Postelection, they also felt more knowledgeable about election science topics, voting behavior, and research methods. Students reported interest in participating in similar research in the future, would recommend other students to do so, and expressed interest in more learning and research about the topics central to their experience. Our results suggest that participants appreciated the importance of elections and their study. Collectively, the participating students are engaged and efficacious—essential qualities of citizens in a democracy.
We are constructing a collector for capturing Interplanetary Dust Particles (IDPs) and space debris on space shuttle. The unit consists of three pieces of thin polyester film, equally spaced 7 cm apart, and an aerogel disk of 3 cm thickness. For each particle captured in the aerogel disk, we determine its direction of impact and its speed, from which we can trace its trajectory. The purpose of the experiment is to study the compositions of IDPs from different origins.
Adequate facepiece fit of N95 filtering facepiece respirators (FFRs) is crucial for optimal protection against airborne pathogens. The quantitative fit test (QNFT) pass rates of the 4 N95 FFR models commonly used in Korea were below 50%. Male sex was identified as a single independent predictive factor for QNFT pass.
Little is known about the combined use of benzodiazepines and antidepressants in older psychiatric patients. This study examined the prescription pattern of concurrent benzodiazepines in older adults treated with antidepressants in Asia, and explored its demographic and clinical correlates.
The data of 955 older adults with any type of psychiatric disorders were extracted from the database of the Research on Asian Psychotropic Prescription Patterns for Antidepressants (REAP-AD) project. Demographic and clinical characteristics were recorded using a standardized protocol and data collection procedure. Both univariate and multiple logistic regression analyses were performed.
The proportion of benzodiazepine and antidepressant combination in this cohort was 44.3%. Multiple logistic regression analysis revealed that higher doses of antidepressants, younger age (<65 years), inpatients, public hospital, major comorbid medical conditions, antidepressant types, and country/territory were significantly associated with more frequent co-prescription of benzodiazepines and antidepressants.
Nearly, half of the older adults treated with antidepressants in Asia are prescribed concurrent benzodiazepines. Given the potentially adverse effects of benzodiazepines, the rationale of benzodiazepines and antidepressants co-prescription needs to be revisited.
In this work, the reduction mechanism of potassium chromate (K2CrO4) was investigated via in situ high-temperature X-ray diffraction coupled with Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. During the hydrogen reduction of K2CrO4, the formation of K3CrO4, KCrO2, and KxCrO2 were detected for the first time. The study discovered that K2CrO4 was firstly reduced to K3CrO4 and an amorphous Cr(III) intermediate product at low temperature (400–500 °C). Moreover, the K3CrO4 was the only crystalline material at this stage. As the temperature increased, a stabilized amorphous CrOOH was formed. At a high temperature (550–700 °C), KCrO2 was generated. Interestingly, a portion of KCrO2 was spontaneously decomposed during the hydrogen reduction, accompanying by the formation of K0.7CrO2. Finally, the results clearly illustrated the reduction mechanism of K2CrO4: K2CrO4 → K3CrO4 → amorphous intermediate → KCrO2.