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COVID-19 lockdowns increased the risk of mental health problems, especially for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). However, despite its importance, little is known about the protective factors for ASD children during the lockdowns.
Based on the Shanghai Autism Early Developmental Cohort, 188 ASD children with two visits before and after the strict Omicron lockdown were included; 85 children were lockdown-free, while 52 and 51 children were under the longer and the shorter durations of strict lockdown, respectively. We tested the association of the lockdown group with the clinical improvement and also the modulation effects of parent/family-related factors on this association by linear regression/mixed-effect models. Within the social brain structures, we examined the voxel-wise interaction between the grey matter volume and the identified modulation effects.
Compared with the lockdown-free group, the ASD children experienced the longer duration of strict lockdown had less clinical improvement (β = 0.49, 95% confidence interval (CI) [0.19–0.79], p = 0.001) and this difference was greatest for social cognition (2.62 [0.94–4.30], p = 0.002). We found that this association was modulated by parental agreeableness in a protective way (−0.11 [−0.17 to −0.05], p = 0.002). This protective effect was enhanced in the ASD children with larger grey matter volumes in the brain's mentalizing network, including the temporal pole, the medial superior frontal gyrus, and the superior temporal gyrus.
This longitudinal neuroimaging cohort study identified that the parental agreeableness interacting with the ASD children's social brain development reduced the negative impact on clinical symptoms during the strict lockdown.
Liriomyza trifolii is a significant pest of vegetable and ornamental crops across the globe. Microwave radiation has been used for controlling pests in stored products; however, there are few reports on the use of microwaves for eradicating agricultural pests such as L. trifolii, and its effects on pests at the molecular level is unclear. In this study, we show that microwave radiation inhibited the emergence of L. trifolii pupae. Transcriptomic studies of L. trifolii indicated significant enrichment of differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in ‘post-translational modification, protein turnover, chaperones’, ‘sensory perception of pain/transcription repressor complex/zinc ion binding’ and ‘insulin signaling pathway’ when analyzed with the Clusters of Orthologous Groups, Gene Ontology and the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes databases, respectively. The top DEGs were related to reproduction, immunity and development and were significantly expressed after microwave radiation. Interestingly, there was no significant difference in the expression of genes encoding heat shock proteins or antioxidant enzymes in L. trifolii treated with microwave radiation as compared to the untreated control. The expression of DEGs encoding cuticular protein and protein takeout were silenced by RNA interference, and the results showed that knockdown of these two DEGs reduced the survival of L. trifolii exposed to microwave radiation. The results of this study help elucidate the molecular response of L. trifolii exposed to microwave radiation and provide novel ideas for control.
To determine if specific dietary patterns are associated with breast cancer (BC) risk in Chinese women.
Latent class analysis (LCA) was performed to identify generic dietary patterns based on daily food-frequency data.
The Chinese Wuxi Exposure and Breast Cancer Study (2013–2014).
A population-based case–control study (695 cases, 804 controls).
Four dietary patterns were identified, Prudent, Chinese traditional, Western and Picky; the proportion in the controls and cases was 0·30/0·32/0·16/0·23 and 0·29/0·26/0·11/0·33, respectively. Women in Picky class were characterised by higher extreme probabilities of non-consumption of specific foods, the highest probabilities of consumption of pickled foods and the lowest probabilities of consumption of cereals, soya foods and nuts. Compared with Prudent class, Picky class was associated with a higher risk (OR = 1·42, 95 % CI 1·06, 1·90), while the relevant association was only in post- (OR = 1·44, 95 % CI 1·01, 2·05) but not in premenopausal women. The Western class characterised by high-protein, high-fat and high-sugar foods, and the Chinese traditional class characterised by typical consumption of soya foods and white meat over red meat, both of them showed no difference in BC risk compared with Prudent class did.
LCA captures the heterogeneity of individuals embedded in the population and could be a useful approach in the study of dietary pattern and disease. Our results indicated that the Picky class might have a positive association with the risk of BC.
Underground Nuclear Astrophysics in China (JUNA) will take the advantage of the ultra-low background in Jinping underground lab. High current accelerator with an ECR source and detectors were commissioned. JUNA plans to study directly a number of nuclear reactions important to hydrostatic stellar evolution at their relevant stellar energies. At the first period, JUNA aims at the direct measurements of 25Mg(p,γ)26 Al, 19F(p,α) 16 O, 13C(α, n) 16O and 12C(α,γ) 16O near the Gamow window. The current progress of JUNA will be given.
Toxoplasma gondii is a major cause of congenital brain disease; however, the underlying mechanism of neuropathogenesis in brain toxoplasmosis remains elusive. To explore the role of T. gondii in the development of neural stem cells (NSCs), NSCs were isolated from GD14 embryos of ICR mice and were co-cultured with tachyzoites of T. gondii RH strain. We found that apoptosis levels of the NSCs co-cultured with 1×106 RH tachyzoites for 24 and 48 h significantly increased in a dose-dependent manner, as compared with the control. Western blotting analysis displayed that the protein level of C/EBP homologous protein (CHOP) was up-regulated, and caspase-12 and c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) were activated in the NSCs co-cultured with the parasites. Pretreatment with endoplasmic reticulum stress (ERS) inhibitor (TUDCA) and caspase-12 inhibitor (Z-ATAD-FMK) inhibited the expression or activation of the key molecules involved in the ERS-mediated apoptotic pathway, and subsequently decreased the apoptosis levels of the NSCs induced by the T. gondii. The findings here highlight that T. gondii induced apoptosis of the NSCs through the ERS signal pathway via activation of CHOP, caspase-12 and JNK, which may constitute a potential molecular mechanism responsible for the cognitive disturbance in neurological disorders of T. gondii.
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