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The present study investigated the effect of Bacillus subtilis DSM 29784 (Ba) and enzymes (xylanase and β-glucanases; Enz), alone or in combination (BE) as antibiotic replacements, on the growth performance, digestive enzyme activity, immune response and the intestinal barrier of broiler chickens. In total, 1200 1-d-old broilers were randomly assigned to five dietary treatments, each with six replicate pens of forty birds for 63 d as follows: (a) basal diet (control), supplemented with (b) 1 × 109 colony-forming units (cfu)/kg Ba, (c) 300 mg/kg Enz, (d) 1 × 109 cfu/kg Ba and 300 mg/kg Enz and (e) 250 mg/kg enramycin (ER). Ba, Enz and BE, similar to ER, decreased the feed conversion rate, maintained intestinal integrity with a higher villus height:crypt depth ratio and increased the numbers of goblet cells. The BE group exhibited higher expression of claudin-1 and mucin 2 than the other four groups. BE supplementation significantly increased the α-diversity and β-diversity of the intestinal microbiota and markedly enhanced lipase activity in the duodenal mucosa. Serum endotoxin was significantly decreased in the BE group. Compared with those in the control group, increased superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase activities were observed in the jejunal mucosa of the Ba and BE groups, respectively. In conclusion, the results suggested that dietary treatment with Ba, Enz or BE has beneficial effects on growth performance and anti-oxidative capacity, and BE had better effects than Ba or Enz alone on digestive enzyme activity and the intestinal microbiota. Ba or Enz could be used as an alternative to antibiotics for broiler chickens.
Aberration in leptin expression is one of the most frequent features in the onset and progression of obesity, but the underlying mechanisms are still unclear and need to be clarified. This study investigated the effects of the absence of gut microbiota on body weight and the expression and promoter methylation of the leptin. Male C57 BL/6 J germ-free (GF) and conventional (CV) mice (aged 4–5 weeks) were fed either a normal-fat diet (NFD) or a high-fat diet (HFD) for 16 weeks. Six to eight mice from each group, at 15 weeks, were administered exogenous leptin for 7 d. Leptin expression and body weight gain in GF mice were increased by NFD with more CpG sites hypermethylated at the leptin promoter, whereas there was no change with HFD, compared with CV mice. Adipose or hepatic expression of genes associated with fat synthesis (Acc1, Fas and Srebp-1c), hydrolysis and oxidation (Atgl, Cpt1a, Cpt1c, Ppar-α and Pgc-1α) was lower, and hypothalamus expression of Pomc and Socs3 was higher in GF mice than levels in CV mice, particularly with NFD feeding. Exogenous leptin reduced body weight in both types of mice, with a greater effect on CV mice with NFD. Adipose Lep-R expression was up-regulated, and hepatic Fas and hypothalamic Socs3 were down-regulated in both types of mice. Expression of fat hydrolysis and oxidative genes (Atgl, Hsl, Cpt1a, Cpt1c, Ppar-α and Pgc-1α) was up-regulated in CV mice. Therefore, the effects of gut microbiota on the leptin expression and body weight were affected by dietary fat intake.
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.
This study aimed to examine the efficacy of combining paroxetine and mirtazapine v. switching to mirtazapine, for patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) who have had an insufficient response to SSRI monotherapy (paroxetine) after the first 2 weeks of treatment.
This double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, three-arm study recruited participants from five hospitals in China. Eligible participants were aged 18–60 years with MDD of at least moderate severity. Participants received paroxetine during a 2-week open-label phase and patients who had not achieved early improvement were randomized to paroxetine, mirtazapine or paroxetine combined with mirtazapine for 6 weeks. The primary outcome was improvement on the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression 17-item (HAMD-17) scores 6 weeks after randomization.
A total of 204 patients who showed early non-response to paroxetine monotherapy were randomly assigned to receive either mirtazapine and placebo (n = 68), paroxetine and placebo (n = 68) or mirtazapine and paroxetine (n = 68), with 164 patients completing the outcome assessment. At week 8, the least squares (LS) mean change of HAMD-17 scores did not significantly differ among the three groups, (12.98 points) in the mirtazapine group, (12.50 points) in the paroxetine group and (13.27 points) in the mirtazapine plus paroxetine combination group. Participants in the paroxetine monotherapy group were least likely to experience adverse effects.
After 8 weeks follow-up, paroxetine monotherapy, mirtazapine monotherapy and paroxetine/mirtazapine combination therapy were equally effective in non-improvers at 2 weeks. The results of this trial do not support a recommendation to routinely offer additional treatment or a switch in treatment strategies for MDD patients who do not show early improvement after 2 weeks of antidepressant treatment.
We investigate the dynamic evolution of the price discovery function in Chinese agricultural futures markets using a newly developed rolling window cointegration approach. The results show that, compared with wheat and rice, the futures-spot cointegration relationship in the soybean and corn markets tends to be more durable and frequent. Dynamic cointegration analysis indicates that the recent market-oriented reforms in China have boosted the price discovery function of soybean and corn futures markets, whereas price stabilization policies tend to weaken the price discovery function of futures markets. The difference in price discovery function is attributed to differences in market mechanisms and Chinese agricultural policies.
Objective: Deficits in the semantic learning strategy were observed in subjects with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) in our previous study. In the present study, we explored the contributions of executive function and brain structure changes to the decline in the semantic learning strategy in aMCI. Methods: A neuropsychological battery was used to test memory and executive function in 96 aMCI subjects and 90 age- and gender-matched healthy controls (HCs). The semantic clustering ratio on the verbal learning test was calculated to evaluate learning strategy. Medial temporal lobe atrophy (MTA) and white matter hyperintensities (WMH) were measured on MRI with the MTA and Fazekas visual rating scales, respectively. Results: Compared to HCs, aMCI subjects had poorer performance in terms of memory, executive function, and the semantic clustering ratio (P < .001). In aMCI subjects, no significant correlation between learning strategy and executive function was observed. aMCI subjects with obvious MTA demonstrated a lower semantic clustering ratio than those without MTA (P < .001). There was no significant difference in the learning strategies between subjects with high-grade WMH and subjects with low-grade WMH. Conclusion: aMCI subjects showed obvious impairment in the semantic learning strategy, which was attributable to MTA but independent of executive dysfunction and subcortical WMH. These findings need to be further validated in large cohorts with biomarkers identified using volumetric brain measurements. (JINS, 2019, 25, 706–717)
Normal odd-chain SFA (OCSFA), particularly tridecanoic acid (n-13 : 0), pentadecanoic acid (n-15 : 0) and heptadecanoic acid (n-17 : 0), are normal components of dairy products, beef and seafood. The ratio of n-15 : 0:n-17 : 0 in ruminant foods (dairy products and beef) is 2:1, while in seafood and human tissues it is 1:2, and their appearance in plasma is often used as a marker for ruminant fat intake. Human elongases encoded by elongation of very long-chain fatty acid (ELOVL)1, ELOVL3, ELOVL6 and ELOVL7 catalyse biosynthesis of the dominant even-chain SFA; however, there are no reports of elongase function on OCSFA. ELOVL transfected MCF7 cells were treated with n-13 : 0, n-15 : 0 or n-17 : 0 (80 µm) and products analysed. ELOVL6 catalysed elongation of n-13 : 0→n-15 : 0 and n-15 : 0→n-17 : 0; and ELOVL7 had modest activity toward n-15 : 0 (n-15 : 0→n-17 : 0). No elongation activity was detected for n-17 : 0→n-19 : 0. Our data expand ELOVL specificity to OCSFA, providing the first molecular evidence demonstrating ELOVL6 as the major elongase acting on OCSFA n-13 : 0 and n-15 : 0 fatty acids. Studies of food intake relying on OCSFA as a biomarker should consider endogenous human metabolism when relying on OCSFA ratios to indicate specific food intake.
Evidence on the association between maternal Hb concentration and preterm birth (PTB) risk is inconclusive. This paper aimed to explore whether women with anaemia or high Hb level before pregnancy would be at higher risk of PTB. We conducted a population-based cohort study with 2 722 274 women aged 20–49 years, who participated in National Free Pre-Pregnancy Checkups Project between 2013 and 2015 and delivered a singleton before 2016 in rural China. Logistic models were used to estimate OR and 95 % CI after adjusting for confounding variables. Restricted cubic spline models were applied to evaluate the dose–response relationships. A total of 192 819 (7·08 %) women had preterm deliveries. Compared with women with Hb of 110–149 g/l, the multivariable-adjusted OR for PTB was 1·19 (95 % CI 0·98, 1·44) for women with Hb<70 g/l, 1·01 (95 % CI 0·97, 1·03) for 70–99 g/l, 0·96 (95 % CI 0·95, 0·98) for 100–109 g/l, 1·04 (95 % CI 1·01, 1·06) for 150–159 g/l, 1·11 (95 % CI 1·05, 1·17) for 160–169 g/l and 1·19 (95 % CI 1·11, 1·27) for ≥170 g/l, respectively. The multivariable-adjusted OR for very PTB (VPTB) was 1·07 (95 % CI 1·03, 1·12) and 1·06 (95 % CI 1·01, 1·12) for women with Hb <110 and ≥150 g/l, compared with those with Hb of 110–149 g/l, respectively. Our study identified a U-shaped relationship between maternal preconception Hb concentration and PTB risk. Both preconception anaemia and high Hb level can significantly increase VPTB risk. Appropriate intervention for women with abnormal Hb levels before pregnancy is very necessary.
Specific adipokines, such as adiponectin and resistin, are secreted from adipose tissue and are associated with the development of obesity. Supplementation of dietary SCFA can prevent and reverse high-fat-diet (HFD)-induced obesity. However, it is not clear whether SCFA ameliorate abnormal expression of adiponectin and resistin in the obese state. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of SCFA on adiponectin and resistin’s expressions in diet-induced obese mice, as well as the potential mechanisms associated with DNA methylation. C57BL/6J male mice were fed for 16 weeks with five types of HFD (34·9 % fat by wt., 60 % kJ) – a control HFD and four HFD with acetate (HFD-A), propionate (HFD-P), butyrate (HFD-B) and their admixture (HFD-SCFA). Meanwhile, a low-fat diet (4·3 % fat by wt., 10 % kJ) was used as the control group. The reduced mRNA levels of adiponectin and resistin in the adipose tissue of the HFD-fed mice were significantly reversed by dietary supplementation of acetate, propionate, butyrate or their admixture to the HFD. Moreover, the expressional changes of adiponectin and resistin induced by SCFA were associated with alterations in DNA methylation at their promoters, which was mediated by reducing the expressions of enzyme-catalysed DNA methyltransferase (DNMT1, 3a, 3b) and the methyl-CpG-binding domain protein 2 (MBD2) and suppressing the binding of these enzymes to the promoters of adiponectin and resistin. Our results indicate that SCFA may correct aberrant expressions of adiponectin and resistin in obesity by epigenetic regulation.
Schistosomiasis in China has been substantially reduced due to an effective control programme employing various measures including bovine and human chemotherapy, and the removal of bovines from endemic areas. To fulfil elimination targets, it will be necessary to identify other possible reservoir hosts for Schistosoma japonicum and include them in future control efforts. This study determined the infection prevalence of S. japonicum in rodents (0–9·21%), dogs (0–18·37%) and goats (6·9–46·4%) from the Dongting Lake area of Hunan province, using a combination of traditional coproparasitological techniques (miracidial hatching technique and Kato-Katz thick smear technique) and molecular methods [quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) and droplet digital PCR (ddPCR)]. We found a much higher prevalence in goats than previously recorded in this setting. Cattle and water buffalo were also examined using the same procedures and all were found to be infected, emphasising the occurrence of active transmission. qPCR and ddPCR were much more sensitive than the coproparasitological procedures with both KK and MHT considerably underestimating the true prevalence in all animals surveyed. The high level of S. japonicum prevalence in goats indicates that they are likely important reservoirs in schistosomiasis transmission, necessitating their inclusion as targets of control, if the goal of elimination is to be achieved in China.
To determine the prevalence of high weight at different characteristics, understand the perceptions and behaviours towards high body weight, and determine potential influencing factors of body weight misperception among high-weight adults in Jilin Province.
A cross-sectional survey with complex sampling design was conducted. We described the prevalence and perception of high body weight.
Northeast China in 2012.
Adults (n 20 552) aged 18–79 years.
Of overweight individuals, 37·4 % considered themselves as ‘normal weight’, 4·8 % reported themselves as being ‘very thin’ and only 53·1 % were aware of their own weight being ‘overweight’. About 1·8 % of both male and female obese individuals perceived themselves as ‘very thin’. Only 29·1 % of obese people thought of themselves as ‘too fat’. Nearly 30·0 % of centrally obese men and women perceived that their waist circumference was about right and they were of ‘normal weight’; 5·7 % of the centrally obese even perceived themselves as being ‘very thin’. Only 51·8 and 12·5 % of centrally obese individuals reported themselves to be ‘overweight’ or ‘too fat’. Body weight misperception was more common in rural residents (OR; 95 % CI: 1·340; 1·191, 1·509). The prevalence of body weight misperception increased with age (middle age: 1·826; 1·605, 2·078; old people: 3·101; 2·648, 3·632) and declined with increased education level (junior middle school: 0·628; 0·545, 0·723; senior middle school: 0·498; 0·426, 0·583; undergraduate and above: 0·395; 0·320, 0·487).
Body weight misperception was common among adults from Jilin Province.
We investigate a system of singular–degenerate parabolic equations with non-local terms, which can be regarded as a spatially heterogeneous competition model of Lotka–Volterra type. Applying the Leray–Schauder fixed-point theorem, we establish the existence of coexistence periodic solutions to the problem, which, together with the existing literature, gives a complete picture for such a system for all parameters.
Using multi-level analysis, the present study proposes that psychological empowerment and perceived organizational support serve as mediators of the effects of human resource management (HRM) bundle on individual innovative behavior. We tested the model using data from 705 employees of 162 firms in China. The results revealed that both psychological empowerment and perceived organizational support partially mediate the relationship between HRM bundle and individual innovative behavior. This study contributes to the understanding of how HRM bundle impact on individual innovative behavior.
Growth of unexpected phases from a composite target of BiFeO3:BiMnO3 and/or BiFeO3:BiCrO3 has been explored using pulsed laser deposition. The Bi2FeMnO6 tetragonal phase can be grown directly on SrTiO3 (STO) substrate, while two phases (S1 and S2) were found to grow on LaAlO3 (LAO) substrates with narrow growth windows. However, introducing a thin CeO2 buffer layer effectively broadens the growth window for the pure S1 phase, regardless of the substrate. Moreover, we discovered two new phases (X1 and X2) when growing on STO substrates using a BiFeO3:BiCrO3 target. Pure X2 phase can be obtained on CeO2-buffered STO and LAO substrates. This work demonstrates that some unexpected phases can be stabilized in a thin film form by using composite perovskite BiRO3 (R = Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, Ni) targets. Furthermore, it also indicates that CeO2 can serve as a general template for the growth of bismuth compounds with potential room-temperature multiferroicity.
Schistosomiasis is a significant cause of human morbidity and mortality. We performed a genome-wide transcriptional survey of liver biopsies obtained from Chinese patients with chronic schistosomiasis only, or chronic schistosomiasis with a current or past history of viral hepatitis B. Both disease groups were compared with patients with no prior history or indicators of any liver disease. Analysis showed in the main, downregulation in gene expression, particularly those involved in signal transduction via EIF2 signalling and mTOR signalling, as were genes associated with cellular remodelling. Focusing on immune associated pathways, genes were generally downregulated. However, a set of three genes associated with granulocytes, MMP7, CLDN7, CXCL6 were upregulated. Differential gene profiles unique to schistosomiasis included the gene Granulin which was decreased despite being generally considered a marker for liver disease, and IGBP2 which is associated with increased liver size, and was the most upregulated gene in schistosomiasis only patients, all of which presented with hepatomegaly. The unique features of gene expression, in conjunction with previous reports in the murine model of the cellular composition of granulomas, granuloma formation and recovery, provide an increased understanding of the molecular immunopathology and general physiological processes underlying hepatic schistosomiasis.
Previous studies have shown that infant-directed speech (IDS) differs from adult-directed speech (ADS) on a variety of dimensions. The aim of the current study was to investigate whether acoustic differences between IDS and ADS in English are modulated by prosodic structure. We compared vowels across the two registers (IDS, ADS) in both stressed and unstressed syllables, and in both utterance-medial and -final positions. Vowels in target bisyllabic trochees in the speech of twenty mothers of 4- and 11-month-olds were analyzed. While stressed and unstressed vowels differed between IDS and ADS for a measure of F0, and trended in similar directions for vowel peripherality, neither set differed in duration. These profiles held for both utterance-medial and -final words.