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Major depressive disorder (MDD) is highly heterogeneous and can be classified as treatment-resistant depression (TRD) or antidepressant-responsive depression (non-TRD) based on patients' responses to antidepressant treatment. Methods for distinguishing between TRD and non-TRD are critical clinical concerns. Deficits of cortical inhibition (CI) have been reported to play an influential role in the pathophysiology of MDD. Whether TRD patients' CI is more impaired than that of non-TRD patients remains unclear.
Paired-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (ppTMS) was used to measure cortical inhibitory function including GABAA- and GABAB-receptor-related CI and cortical excitatory function including glutamate-receptor-related intracortical facilitation (ICF). We recruited 36 healthy controls (HC) and 36 patients with MDD (non-TRD, n = 16; TRD, n = 20). All participants received evaluations for depression severity and ppTMS examinations. Non-TRD patients received an additional ppTMS examination after 3 months of treatment with the SSRI escitalopram.
Patients with TRD exhibited reduced short-interval intracortical inhibition (SICI) and long-interval intracortical inhibition (LICI), as shown by abnormally higher estimates, than those with non-TRD or HC (F = 11.030, p < 0.001; F = 10.309, p < 0.001, respectively). After an adequate trial of escitalopram treatment, the LICI of non-TRD reduced significantly (t = − 3.628, p < 0.001), whereas the ICF remained lower than that of HC and showed no difference from pretreatment non-TRD.
TRD was characterized by relatively reduced CI, including both GABAA- and GABAB-receptor-mediated neurons while non-TRD preserved partial CI. In non-TRD, SSRIs may mainly modulate GABAB-receptor-related LICI. Our findings revealed distinguishable features of CI in antidepressant-resistant and responsive major depression.
Maternal one-carbon metabolism during pregnancy is crucial for fetal development and programming by DNA methylation. However, evidence on one-carbon biomarkers other than folate is lacking. We, therefore, investigated whether maternal plasma methyl donors, that is, choline, betaine and methionine, are associated with birth outcomes. Blood samples were obtained from 115 women during gestation (median 26·3 weeks, 90 % range 22·7–33·0 weeks). Plasma choline, betaine, methionine and dimethylglycine were measured using HPLC-tandem MS. Multivariate linear and logistic regression models were used to estimate the association between plasma biomarkers and birth weight, birth length, the risk of small-for-gestational-age and large-for-gestational-age (LGA). Higher level of maternal betaine was associated with lower birth weight (–130·3 (95 % CI –244·8, –15·9) per 1 sd increment for log-transformed betaine). Higher maternal methionine was associated with lower risk of LGA, and adjusted OR, with 95 % CI for 1 sd increase in methionine concentration was 0·44 (95 % CI 0·21, 0·89). Stratified analyses according to infant sex or maternal plasma homocysteine status showed that reduction in birth weight in relation to maternal betaine was only limited to male infants or to who had higher maternal homocysteine status (≥5·1 µmol/l). Higher maternal betaine status was associated with reduced birth weight. Maternal methionine was inversely associated with LGA risk. These findings are needed to be replicated in future larger studies.
Composite materials include various components with different structures, which cooperatively increase their properties and extend their application. In this study, the graphitic carbon nitride (g-C3N4) guest material was assembled into the porous of the SiO2 aerogel, which was prepared during the gel process. By this way, the g-C3N4 could be absolutely encapsulated into the porous of the disordered porous SiO2 aerogel. The prepared g-C3N4/SiO2 composite had a loose porous structure and exhibited the much higher photocatalytic activity to the photodegradation of rhodamine B (RhB) under visible light. The disordered porous structure enhanced photocatalytic activity, and the degradation rate reached to 96.42% in 90 min under the irradiation of visible light, which could be attributed to its high surface area and effective electron–hole separation rate. The catalyst had the much higher stability and could be easily recycled utilization. The prepared composites could be applied to degrade organic pollutants in wastewater.
Currently, 564,000 Canadians are living with dementia. This number will continue to rise as the population ages. Family physicians play an integral role in the diagnosis and management of dementia patients. Although studies have looked at family physician perspectives on dementia care in the urban setting, much less is known about challenges in rural areas. This study aimed to explore rural family physicians’ experiences in caring for patients with dementia in rural Alberta, Canada. We conducted three semi-structured focus groups with 16 family physicians to evaluate barriers and facilitators to providing care to persons with dementia in three rural communities. We developed focus group questions based on the theoretical domains framework (TDF) and analysed them using a framework approach. Physician capabilities, opportunities, and motivations appear to play important roles in caring for these patients. These research findings can be used to advance quality of care for rural dementia patients.
Associations between ferritin and insulin sensitivity have been described in recent studies. The possible association showed conflicting results by sex and menopausal status. We aimed to investigate the cross-sectional association of ferritin levels with insulin resistance and β-cell function. A total of 2518 participants (1033 men, 235 pre-menopausal women and 1250 post-menopausal women) were enrolled from the Changfeng Study. A standard interview was conducted, as well as anthropometric measurements and laboratory analyses, for each participant. The serum ferritin level was measured using electrochemiluminescence immunoassay. Insulin resistance and β-cell function indices were derived from a homeostasis model assessment. The results showed that the serum ferritin levels were 250·4 (sd 165·2), 94·6 (sd 82·0) and 179·8 (sd 126·6) ng/ml in the men, pre-menopausal and post-menopausal women, respectively. In fully adjusted models (adjusting for age, current smoking, BMI, waist:hip ratio, systolic blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure, TAG, HDL-cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, log urine albumin:creatinine ratio, leucocytes, alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase and γ-glutamyl transpeptidase), serum ferritin concentrations are significantly associated with insulin resistance in men and post-menopausal females, and the null association was observed in pre-menopausal females. Interestingly, an increased β-cell function associated with higher ferritin was observed in post-menopausal participants, but not in male participants. In conclusion, these results suggested that elevated serum ferritin levels were associated with surrogate measures of insulin resistance among the middle-aged and elderly male and post-menopausal women, but not in pre-menopausal women.
Influenza is a long-standing public health concern, but its transmission remains poorly understood. To have a better knowledge of influenza transmission, we carried out a detailed modelling investigation in a nosocomial influenza outbreak in Hong Kong. We identified three hypothesised transmission modes between index patient and other inpatients based on the long-range airborne and fomite routes. We considered three kinds of healthcare workers’ routine round pathways in 1140 scenarios with various values of important parameters. In each scenario, we used a multi-agent modelling framework to estimate the infection risk for each hypothesis and conducted least-squares fitting to evaluate the hypotheses by comparing the distribution of the infection risk with that of the attack rates. Amongst the hypotheses tested in the 1140 scenarios, the prediction of modes involving the long-range airborne route fit better with the attack rates, and that of the two-route transmission mode had the best fit, with the long-range airborne route contributing about 94% and the fomite route contributing 6% to the infections. Under the assumed conditions, the influenza virus was likely to have spread via a combined long-range airborne and fomite routes, with the former predominant and the latter negligible.
Heading angle is a vital parameter in maintaining a vessel's track along a planned course and should be guaranteed in a stable and reliable way. An innovative method of heading determination based on a fisheye camera, which is almost totally unaffected by electromagnetism and geomagnetism, is proposed in this paper. In addition, unlike traditional astronomical methods, it also has a certain degree of adaptability to cloudy weather. Utilising the super wide Field Of View (FOV) of the camera, it is able to simultaneously image the Moon and the horizon. The Moon is treated as the observed celestial body and the horizon works as the horizontal datum. Two experiments were conducted at sea, successfully proving the feasibility of this method. The proposed heading determination system has the merits of automation, resistance to interference and could be miniaturised, making application viable.
The pathophysiology of cognitive impairment in patients with the major depressive disorder (MDD) may involve neuroinflammation mediated by cytokines.
The aim of this study was to examine the serum interleukin-6 (IL-6) levels, sustained attention, and their association in patients with MDD.
Thirty patients with MDD and 30 healthy controls were enrolled in this case-control study. Sustained attention was measured using the Rapid Visual Information Processing (RVP) task in the Cambridge Neuropsychological Tests Automated Battery. The serum IL-6 levels of all subjects were assessed by sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays.
There were significant differences in the log10RVP total hits, log10RVP total misses, and log10RVP mean latency between patients with MDD and healthy controls (F = 6.04, p = 0.017; F = 19.77, p < 0.0001; F = 14.42, p < 0.0001, respectively). The serum levels of Log10IL-6 were significantly higher in patients with MDD than in healthy controls (F = 192.27, p < 0.0001). The log10IL-6 levels were also positively correlated with the log10RVP mean latency in patients with MDD (r = 0.45, p = 0.013). A further stepwise multivariate regression analysis indicated that the log10IL-6 levels were significantly associated with the log10RVP mean latency in patients with MDD (β = 0.31, t = 2.41, p = 0.025).
Our data suggested that increased IL-6 levels were associated with the psychopathology of MDD, and that abnormal IL-6 levels were implicated in the impairment of sustained attention in patients with MDD.
In this paper, field effect transistors (FET) based on different kinds of non-graphene materials are introduced, which are MoS2, WSe2 and black phosphorus (BP). Those devices have their unique features in fabrication process compared with conventional FETs. Among them, MoS2 FET shows better electrical characteristics by applying a SiO2 protective layer; WSe2 FET is fabricated based on a new low pressure chemical vapor deposition (LPCVD) method; BP FET acquires high on/off ratio and high hole mobility by using a simple dry transfer method. Those novel non-graphene materials inspire new design and fabrication process of basic logic device.
Researches have suggested Mediterranean diet might lower the risk of chronic diseases, but data on skeletal muscle mass (SMM) are limited. This community-based cross-sectional study examined the association between the alternate Mediterranean diet score (aMDS) and SMM in 2230 females and 1059 males aged 40–75 years in Guangzhou, China. General information and habitual dietary information were assessed in face-to-face interviews conducted during 2008–2010 and 3 years later. The aMDS was calculated by summing the dichotomous points for the items of higher intakes of whole grain, vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, fish and ratio of MUFA:SFA, lower red meat and moderate ethanol consumption. The SMM of the whole body, limbs, arms and legs were measured using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry during 2011–2013. After adjusting for potential covariates, higher aMDS was positively associated with skeletal muscle mass index (SMI, SMM/height2, kg/m2) at all of the studied sites in males (all Ptrend<0·05). The multiple covariate-adjusted SMI means were 2·70 % (whole body), 2·65 % (limbs), 2·50 % (arms) and 2·70 % (legs) higher in the high (v. low) category aMDS in males (all P<0·05). In females, the corresponding values were 1·35 % (Ptrend=0·03), 1·05, 0·52 and 1·20 %, (Ptrend>0·05). Age-stratified analyses showed that the favourable associations tended to be more pronounced in the younger subjects aged less than the medians of 59·2 and 62·2 years in females and males (Pinteraction>0·10). In conclusion, the aMDS shows protective associations with SMM in Chinese adults, particularly in male and younger subjects.
Epidemiological data show that osteoarthritis (OA) is significantly associated with lower birth weight, and that OA may be a type of fetal-originated adult disease. The present study aimed to investigate the prenatal food-restriction (PFR) effect on the quality of articular cartilage in female offspring to explore the underlying mechanisms of fetal-originated OA. Maternal rats were fed a restricted diet from gestational day (GD) 11 to 20 to induce intra-uterine growth retardation. Female fetuses and female adult offspring fed a post-weaning high-fat diet were killed at GD20 and postnatal week 24, respectively. Serum and knee cartilage samples from fetuses and adult female offspring were collected and examined for cholesterol metabolism and histology. Fetal serum corticosterone and insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) in the PFR group were lower than those of the control, but the serum cholesterol level was not changed. The lower expression of IGF-1 in the PFR group lasted into adulthood. The expression of extracellular matrix (ECM) genes, including type II collagen, aggrecan and cholesterol efflux genes including liver X receptor, were significantly induced, but the ATP-binding-cassette transporter A1 was unchanged. PFR could induce a reduction in ECM synthesis and impaired cholesterol efflux in female offspring, and eventually led to poor quality of articular cartilage and OA.
In this paper, the recent studies of laboratory astrophysics with strong magnetic fields in China have been reviewed. On the Shenguang-II laser facility of the National Laboratory on High-Power Lasers and Physics, a laser-driven strong magnetic field up to 200 T has been achieved. The experiment was performed to model the interaction of solar wind with dayside magnetosphere. Also the low beta plasma magnetic reconnection (MR) has been studied. Theoretically, the model has been developed to deal with the atomic structures and processes in strong magnetic field. Also the study of shock wave generation in the magnetized counter-streaming plasmas is introduced.
The rapid outward and upward growth of the world's large fluvial sedimentary systems during the second half of the Holocene is a remarkable geologic process that may have buried considerable areas of pre-existing riparian wetlands, which in turn would sequester massive carbon. However, the role of floodplain lakes in the global carbon budget has long been neglected. This article demonstrates the potential of organic carbon burial due to floodplain aggradation during the late Holocene by analyzing a sediment core from a buried floodplain lake in the lower Yellow River area. Based on detailed radiocarbon dating, this study inferred that landscape development in the study area has experienced three disparate stages closely related to the displacement of the lower Yellow River channel. The first stage (∼2250–1700 cal yr BP) represents a widespread pedogenic process while the Yellow River discharged to the northern Bohai Sea through a course much farther north from the present-day position. The subsequent stage (∼1700–1000 cal yr BP) broadly corresponds to the calm period of the Yellow River while it discharged to the southern Bohai Sea through a course slightly north from the present-day position. A lacustrine environment prevailed during this period, sequestering organic carbon at a rate of ∼0.58 kg m 2 yr 1. The final stage (∼1000 cal yr BP to present) is marked by the rapid growth of the floodplain due to the frequent rerouting of the lower Yellow River. This analysis suggests that fluvial sedimentary systems should be integrated into the terrestrial carbon budget when accounting for the aberrant rise of the atmospheric CO2 in the face of global cooling during the second half of the Holocene.
The present study was performed to identify the genotype of a hypertrophic cardiomyopathy family and investigate the clinicopathogenic characteristics and prognostic features of relevant genetic abnormalities. Target sequence capture sequencing was performed to screen for pathogenic alleles in a 32-year-old female patient (proband). Sanger sequencing was carried out to verify the results. Sanger sequencing was also performed on other family members to identify allele carriers. A survival analysis was carried out using published literature and our findings. We found that the proband and her son harboured a Gly716Arg sequence variant of the β-myosin heavy chain. Neither the proband’s father nor the mother were carriers of this sequence variant; thus, the mutation was classified as “de novo”. Further survival analysis revealed that female patients appear to have a longer life expectancy compared with males. Our study may provide an effective approach for the genetic diagnosis of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
Previous studies have demonstrated that betaine supplements increase lean body mass in livestock and improve muscle performance in human beings, but evidence for its effect on human lean mass is limited. Our study assessed the association of circulating betaine with lean mass and its composition in Chinese adults. A community-based study was conducted on 1996 Guangzhou residents (weight/mass: 1381/615) aged 50–75 years between 2008 and 2010. An interviewer-administered questionnaire was used to collect general baseline information. Fasting serum betaine was assessed using HPLC-MS. A total of 1590 participants completed the body composition analysis performed using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry during a mean of 3·2 years of follow-up. After adjustment for age, regression analyses demonstrated a positive association of serum betaine with percentage of lean mass (LM%) of the entire body, trunk and limbs in men (all P<0·05) and LM% of the trunk in women (P=0·016). Each sd increase in serum betaine was associated with increases in LM% of 0·609 (whole body), 0·811 (trunk), 0·422 (limbs), 0·632 (arms) and 0·346 (legs) in men and 0·350 (trunk) in women. Multiple logistic regression analysis revealed that the prevalence of lower LM% decreased by 17 % (whole body) and 14 % (trunk) in women and 23 % (whole body), 28 % (trunk), 22 % (arms) and 26 % (percentage skeletal muscle index) in men with each sd increment in serum betaine. Elevated circulating betaine was associated with a higher LM% and lower prevalence of lower LM% in middle-aged and elderly Chinese adults, particularly men.
The microstructure evolution and mechanical properties of ultrafine-grained (UFG) Al sheets subjected to accumulative roll bonding (ARB) and subsequent cryorolling was studied. Cryorolling can suppress the dynamic softening of UFG Al sheets subjected to ARB at room temperature. After the third ARB pass, the grains are slightly refined as the number of ARB passes increases. However, the grains are significantly refined further during cryorolling. The grain size of 460 nm achieved after the third ARB pass is reduced to 290 nm after two cryorolling passes with total reduction ratio 80%. Sheets subjected to ARB + cryorolling show improved mechanical properties compared to only ARB-processed sheets due to a change in the fraction of high-angle boundaries and elongated grains. The deformation mechanism for ultrafine grains at room temperature is determined by grain boundary sliding or dislocation-based recovery, while it is governed by dislocation glide at cryogenic temperature.
Picoeukaryotes (<2–3 μm) perform key roles for the functioning of marine ecosystems, but little is known regarding the composition and diversity of picoeukaryotes in aquaculture areas. In this study, the Illumina MiSeq platform was used for sequencing the V4 variable region within the 18S rDNA gene to analyse genetic diversity and relative abundance of picoeukaryotic communities in the Qinhuangdao scallop cultivation area of the Bohai Sea. The community was dominated by three super groups, the alveolates (54%), stramenopiles (41%) and chlorophytes (3%), and three groups, dinoflagellates (54%), pelagomonadales (40%) and prasinophytes (3%). Furthermore, a contrasting station with open water away from the eutrophic aquaculture area was chosen. The communities collected from the two stations exhibited significant differences, with higher diversity in the aquaculture area. These results provide the first snapshot of the picoeukaryotic diversity in surface waters of the Qinhuangdao scallop cultivation area, and basic data for future studies on picoeukaryote community in an aquaculture region.
Postmenopausal women are at increased risk of CVD: the increased serum ferritin level may be involved in the pathogenesis. The aim of the present study is to investigate the relationship of ferritin and carotid atherosclerosis in postmenopausal women. A total of 1178 postmenopausal women (mean age, 60·8 years) were enrolled from the Changfeng Study. A standard interview, anthropometric measurements and laboratory analyses were performed for each participant. Bilateral CIMT (carotid intima–media thickness) were measured using ultrasonography, and the presence of carotid plaques was assessed. Serum ferritin was measured using electrochemiluminescence immunoassay. The results showed that serum ferritin was 181·9 (sd 65·8) ng/ml in the postmenopausal women. Multivariate, linear, stepwise regression analysis demonstrated that age (standardised β = 0·233, P< 0·001), alanine transaminase (standardised β = 0·194, P< 0·001), log homeostasis model assessment index for insulin resistance (standardised β = 0·181, P< 0·001), TAG (standardised β = 0·083, P= 0·003), Hb (standardised β = 0·080, P= 0·004) and PPG (2-h glucose levels following a 75-g oral glucose challenge) (standardised β = 0·079, P= 0·004) were independently associated with serum ferritin. Compared with the ferritin level of subjects in the first quartile, that in the fourth quartile had greater CIMT, and higher prevalence of carotid plaque. After adjusting for conventional CVD risk factors, Hb, leucocytes, log urine albumin:creatinine ratio and liver function, the ferritin level of postmenopausal women in the fourth quartile had a 1·587-fold increased risk of carotid plaques relative to those in the lowest quartile. In conclusion, these results suggest that serum ferritin is independently and positively associated with carotid atherosclerosis in postmenopausal women and that ferritin may be implicated in atherosclerosis.
The relationship between hydrophobicity and the protective effect of whey protein hydrolysates (WPHs) against oxidative stress was studied. Whey protein was first hydrolysed by pepsin and trypsin to obtain WPHs. After absorbed by macroporous adsorption resin DA201-C, three fractions named as M20, M40, and M60 were eluted by various concentrations of ethanol. The hydrophobicity showed a trend of increase from M20 to M60. Antioxidant ability test in vitro indicated that all the three components of WPHs displayed reasonably good antioxidant ability. Moreover, with the increase of hydrophobicity, antioxidant ability of WPHs improved significantly. Then rat pheochromocytoma line 12 (PC12) cells oxidative model was built to evaluate the suppression of oxidative stress of three components on PC12 cells induced by H2O2. Morphological alterations, cell viability, apoptosis rate, and intracellular antioxidase system tests all indicated that WPHs exert significant protection on PC cells against H2O2-induced damage. Among them, M60 had the highest protective effect by increasing 19·3% cell survival and reducing 28·6% cell apoptosis. These results suggested hydrophobicity of WPHs was contributing to the antioxidant ability and the protective effect against oxidative damage.
A crucial problem is the risk that a manipulator arm would be damaged by twisting or bending during and after contacting a target satellite. This paper presents a solution to minimize the risk of damage to the arm and thereby enhance contact performance. First, a hand-eye servo controller is proposed as a method for accurately tracking and capturing a target satellite. Next, a motion planning strategy is employed to obtain the best-fit contacting moments. Also, an impedance control law is implemented to increase protection during operation and to ensure more accurate compliance. Finally, to overcome the challenge of verifying algorithms for a space manipulator while on the ground, a novel experimental system with a 6-DOF (degree of freedom) manipulator on a chaser field robot is presented and implemented to capture a target field robot; the proposed methods are then validated using the experimental platform.