To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Maternal supraphysiological estradiol (E2) environment during pregnancy leads to adverse perinatal outcomes. However, the influence of oocyte exposure to high E2 levels on perinatal outcomes remains unknown. Thus, a retrospective cohort study was conducted to explore the effect of high E2 level induced by controlled ovarian stimulation (COH) on further outcomes after frozen embryo transfer (FET). The study included all FET cycles (n = 10,581) between 2014 and 2017. All cycles were categorized into three groups according to the E2 level on the day of the human Chorionic Gonadotropin trigger. Odds ratios (ORs) and their confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated to evaluate the association between E2 level during COH and pregnancy outcomes and subsequent neonatal outcomes. From our findings, higher E2 level was associated with lower percentage of chemical pregnancy, clinical pregnancy, ongoing pregnancy, and live birth as well as increased frequency of early miscarriage. Preterm births were more common among singletons in women with higher E2 level during COH (aOR1 = 1.93, 95% CI: 1.22–3.06; aOR2 = 2.05, 95% CI: 1.33–3.06). Incidence of small for gestational age (SGA) was more common in both singletons (aOR1 = 2.01, 95% CI: 1.30–3.11; aOR2 = 2.51, 95% CI: 1.69–3.74) and multiples (aOR1 = 1.58, 95% CI: 1.03–2.45; aOR2 = 1.99, 95% CI: 1.05–3.84) among women with relatively higher E2 level. No association was found between high E2 level during COH and the percentage of macrosomia or large for gestational age. In summary, oocyte exposure to high E2 level during COH should be brought to our attention, since the pregnancy rate decreasing and the risk of preterm birth and SGA increasing following FET.
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).
Existing data on folate status and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) prognosis are scarce. We prospectively examined whether serum folate concentrations at diagnosis were associated with liver cancer-specific survival (LCSS) and overall survival (OS) among 982 patients with newly diagnosed, previously untreated HCC, who were enrolled in the Guangdong Liver Cancer Cohort (GLCC) study between September 2013 and February 2017. Serum folate concentrations were measured using chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay. Cox proportional hazards models were performed to estimate hazard ratios (HR) and 95 % CI by sex-specific quartile of serum folate. Compared with patients in the third quartile of serum folate, patients in the lowest quartile had significantly inferior LCSS (HR = 1·48; 95 % CI 1·05, 2·09) and OS (HR = 1·43; 95 % CI 1·03, 1·99) after adjustment for non-clinical and clinical prognostic factors. The associations were not significantly modified by sex, age at diagnosis, alcohol drinking status and Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) stage. However, there were statistically significant interactions on both multiplicative and additive scale between serum folate and C-reactive protein (CRP) levels or smoking status and the associations of lower serum folate with worse LCSS and OS were only evident among patients with CRP > 3·0 mg/l or current smokers. An inverse association with LCSS were also observed among patients with liver damage score ≥3. These results suggest that lower serum folate concentrations at diagnosis are independently associated with worse HCC survival, most prominently among patients with systemic inflammation and current smokers. A future trial of folate supplementation seems to be promising in HCC patients with lower folate status.
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.
Paediatric Mycoplasma pneumoniae pneumonia (MPP) is a major cause of community-acquired pneumonia in China. Data on epidemiology of paediatric MPP from China are little known. This study retrospectively collected data from June 2006 to June 2016 in Beijing Children's Hospital, Capital Medical University of North China and aims to explore the epidemiological features of paediatric MPP and severe MPP (SMPP) in North China during the past 10 years. A total of 27 498 paediatric patients with pneumonia were enrolled. Among them, 37.5% of paediatric patients had MPP. In this area, an epidemic took place every 2–3 years at the peak, and the positive rate of MPP increased during these peak years over time. The peak age of MPP was between the ages of 6 and 10 years, accounting for 75.2%, significantly more compared with other age groups (χ2 = 1384.1, P < 0.0001). The epidemics peaked in September, October and November (χ2 = 904.9, P < 0.0001). Additionally, 13.0% of MPP paediatric patients were SMPP, but over time, the rate of SMPP increased, reaching 42.6% in 2016. The mean age of paediatric patients with SMPP (6.7 ± 3.0 years old) was younger than that of patients with non-SMPP (7.4 ± 3.2 years old) (t = 3.60, P = 0.0001). The prevalence of MPP and SMPP is common in China, especially in children from 6 to 10 years old. Paediatric patients with SMPP tend to be younger than those with non-SMPP. MPP outbreaks occur every 2–3 years in North China. September, October and November are the peak months, unlike in South China. Understanding the epidemiological characteristics of paediatric MPP can contribute to timely treatment and diagnosis, and may improve the prognosis of children with SMPP.
This study aimed to reveal the associated risk factors for latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) detected by T-SPOT.TB assay among health care workers (HCWs) at different working locations or job categories in China. This cross-sectional study included 934 HCWs who underwent the T-SPOT.TB assay. Demographic and social characteristics of the participants, including age, sex, job categories, department/ward and duration of healthcare service, were recorded. Among 934 HCWs, 267 (28.5867%) were diagnosed as having LTBI with positive T-SPOT.TB assay. HCWs working in inpatient tuberculosis (TB) (odds ratio (OR) 2.917; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.852–4.596; P < 0.001) and respiratory wards (OR 1.840; 95% CI 1.124–3.011; P = 0.015), and with longer duration of healthcare service (OR 1.048; 95% CI 1.016–1.080; P = 0.003) were risk factors for positive T-SPOT.TB result. Furthermore, longer working duration increased the positive rate of T-SPOT.TB results for physicians and nurses, and physicians had higher risks than nurses for the same working duration. Inpatient TB and respiratory wards were high-risk working locations for HCWs with LTBI, and longer duration of healthcare service also increased the risk of LTBI among HCWs. A complete strategy for TB infection control and protection awareness among HCWs should be enhanced.
The largest dischargers of ice in Greenland are glaciers that terminate in the ocean and melt in contact with sea water. Studies of ice-sheet/ocean interactions have mostly focused on melting beneath near-horizontal floating ice shelves. For tidewater glaciers, melting instead takes place along the vertical face of the calving front. Here we modify the Massachusetts Institute of Technology general circulation model (MITgcm) to include ice melting from a calving face with the freshwater outflow at the glacier grounding line. We use the model to predict melt rates and their sensitivity to ocean thermal forcing and to subglacial discharge. We find that melt rates increase with approximately the one-third power of the subglacial water flux, and increase linearly with ocean thermal forcing. Our simulations indicate that, consistent with limited field data, melting ceases when subglacial discharge is shut off, and reaches several meters per day when subglacial discharge is high in the summer. These results are a first step toward a more realistic representation of subglacial discharge and of ocean thermal forcing on the subaqueous melting of tidewater glaciers in a numerical ocean model. Our results illustrate that the ice-front melting process is both complex and strongly time-dependent.
Interaction of Greenland’s marine-terminating glaciers with the ocean has emerged as a key term in the ice-sheet mass balance and a plausible trigger for their recent acceleration. Our knowledge of the dynamics, however, is limited by scarcity of ocean measurements at the glacier/ocean boundary. Here data collected near six marine-terminating glaciers (79 North, Kangerdlugssuaq, Helheim and Petermann glaciers, Jakobshavn Isbræ, and the combined Sermeq Kujatdleq and Akangnardleq) are compared to investigate the water masses and the circulation at the ice/ocean boundary. Polar Water, of Arctic origin, and Atlantic Water, from the subtropical North Atlantic, are found near all the glaciers. Property analysis indicates melting by Atlantic Water (AW; found at the grounding line depth near all the glaciers) and the influence of subglacial discharge at depth in summer. AW temperatures near the glaciers range from 4.5˚C in the southeast, to 0.16˚C in northwest Greenland, consistent with the distance from the subtropical North Atlantic and cooling across the continental shelf. A review of its offshore variability suggests that AW temperature changes in the fjords will be largest in southern and smallest in northwest Greenland, consistent with the regional distribution of the recent glacier acceleration.
We examined the in vitro developmental competence of parthenogenetic activation (PA) oocytes activated by an electric pulse (EP) and treated with various concentrations of AZD5438 for 4 h. Treatment with 10 µM AZD5438 for 4 h significantly improved the blastocyst formation rate of PA oocytes in comparison with 0, 20, or 50 µM AZD5438 treatment (46.4% vs. 34.5%, 32.3%, and 24.0%, respectively; P < 0.05). The blastocyst formation rate was higher in the group treated with AZD5438 for 4 h than in the groups treated with AZD5438 for 2 or 6 h (42.8% vs. 38.6% and 37.2%, respectively; P > 0.05). Furthermore, 66.67% of blastocysts derived from these AZD5438-treated PA oocytes had a diploid karyotype. The blastocyst formation rate of PA and somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) embryos was similar between oocytes activated by an EP and treated with 2 mM 6-dimethylaminopurine for 4 h and those activated by an EP and treated with 10 µM AZD5438 for 4 h (11.11% vs. 13.40%, P > 0.05). In addition, the level of maturation-promoting factor (MPF) was significantly decreased in oocytes activated by an EP and treated with 10 µM AZD5438 for 4 h. Finally, the mRNA expression levels of apoptosis-related genes (Bax and Bcl-2) and pluripotency-related genes (Oct4, Nanog, and Sox2) were checked by RT-PCR; however, there were no differences between the AZD5438-treated and non-treated control groups. Our results demonstrate that porcine oocyte activation via an EP in combination with AZD5438 treatment can lead to a high blastocyst formation rate in PA and SCNT experiments.
Brief cognitive–behavioural therapy (CBT) is an emerging treatment for
schizophrenia in community settings; however, further trials are needed,
especially in non-Western countries.
To test the effects of brief CBT for Chinese patients with schizophrenia
in the community (trial registration: ChiCTR-TRC-13003709).
A total of 220 patients with schizophrenia from four districts of Beijing
were randomly assigned to either brief CBT plus treatment as usual (TAU)
or TAU alone. Patients were assessed at baseline, post-treatment and at
6- and 12-month follow-ups by raters masked to group allocation.
At the post-treatment assessment and the 12-month follow-up, patients who
received brief CBT showed greater improvement in overall symptoms,
general psychopathology, insight and social functioning. In total, 37.3%
of those in the brief CBT plus TAU group experienced a clinically
significant response, compared with only 19.1% of those in the TAU alone
group (P = 0.003).
Brief CBT has a positive effect on Chinese patients with schizophrenia in
Nanocolloidal crystals (NCCs) have promising applications in optical and photonic devices. However, it is critical to mechanically reinforce NCCs for device reliability, since as-synthesized NCCs are fragile due to weak interparticle bonding. Thermal sintering is currently the most common reinforcement technique; however, this method could induce serious cracking and is not suitable for temperature-sensitive materials. In this study, by characterizing silica NCCs reinforced through sintering and alumina atomic layer deposition (ALD), we find that the ALD treatment is much more effective for hardening, stiffening, and more importantly toughening NCCs. Thermally sintered NCCs are prone to indentation-induced cracking due to large residual tensile stress, significantly impairing the toughness. In contrast, the ALD treatment toughens NCCs by much over 300%. Our finding provides insights for reinforcing and toughening various nanoparticle-based and nanoporous materials.
The aim of the present study was to investigate the prevalence of hyperhomocysteinaemia (HHCY; total plasma homocysteine (tHcy) concentration >15 μmol/l) and its major determinants in healthy Chinese northerners. A descriptive and cross-sectional study was conducted in Shaanxi Province, China. The study sample included 2645 participants (1042 men and 1603 women) aged >20 years. Demographic characteristics and lifestyle factors were assessed via questionnaire interviews and physical examination. Plasma levels of homocysteine and folate and methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) gene polymorphism were determined according to standard methods. The prevalence of HHCY was 67·7 % (81·4 % in men and 58·8 % in women). The geometric mean of tHcy concentration was 19·1 μmol/l. The OR of HHCY were 0·44 (95 % CI 0·34, 0·57) for women v. men; 1·95 (95 % CI 1·41, 2·70), 1·41 (95 % CI 1·05, 1·88) and 0·76 (95 % CI 0·64, 0·89) for participants with smoking and alcohol drinking cessation and improved physical activity levels, respectively; 0·25 (95 % CI 0·17, 0·38), 0·33 (95 % CI 0·22, 0·49) and 0·56 (95 % CI 0·36, 0·88) for participants with an education level of elementary school, secondary school and university v. illiterate, respectively; 1·41 (95 % CI 1·13, 1·75) and 3·05 (95 % CI 2·35, 3·97) for participants with CT and TT v. CC genotype at MTHFR 677C → T polymorphism, respectively. These results demonstrate that the prevalence of HHCY is considerably high in Chinese northerners, especially in TT subjects, suggesting that implementation of tHcy-lowering strategies, such as lifestyle changes, is necessary.
In the present study, we performed a meta-analysis to assess the ability of leucine supplementation to increase the muscle protein fraction synthetic rate and to augment lean body mass or leg lean mass in elderly patients. A literature search was conducted on Medline, Cochrane, EMBASE and Google Scholar databases up to 31 December 2013 for clinical trials that investigated the administration of leucine as a nutrient that affects muscle protein metabolism and muscle mass in elderly subjects. The included studies were randomised controlled trials. The primary outcome for the meta-analysis was the protein fractional synthetic rate. Secondary outcomes included lean body mass and leg lean mass. A total of nine studies were included in the meta-analysis. The results showed that the muscle protein fractional synthetic rate after intervention significantly increased in the leucine group compared with the control group (pooled standardised difference in mean changes 1·08, 95 % CI 0·50, 1·67; P< 0·001). No difference was found between the groups in relation to lean body mass (pooled standardised difference in mean changes 0·18, 95 % CI − 0·18, 0·54; P= 0·318) or leg lean mass (pooled standardised difference in mean changes 0·006, 95 % CI − 0·32, 0·44; P= 0·756). These findings suggest that leucine supplementation is useful to address the age-related decline in muscle mass in elderly individuals, as it increases the muscle protein fractional synthetic rate.
Low-cost La(FexSi1-x)13 alloys exhibiting the large magnetocaloric effect (MCE) are one of the most promising magnetic refrigerant candidates for room temperature magnetic refrigeration. The NaZn13-type phase (hereinafter 1:13 phase) is believed to play a key role in the MCE of these alloys. While the formation of the 1:13 phase directly from the melt upon cooling was challenging, in this paper we demonstrate that the 1:13 phase can be formed directly during solidification. We found that three kinds of solidification microstructure were formed because a competitive nucleation occurred between the 1:13 and α-(Fe,Si) phase during the solidification of LaFe11.5Si1.5 alloy. In case of a high cooling speed, a large amount of NaZn13–type phase with equiaxed grains and a small amount of α-(Fe,Si) phase were formed because of a dominant nucleation rate of 1:13 phase. When the cooling rate was small, a large number of α-(Fe,Si) phase with dendrites were formed because the nucleation rate of α-(Fe,Si) phase is larger than that of the 1:13 phase. These results revealed that nucleation rates of phases is very important to the composition formation and microstructure of LaFe11.5Si1.5 alloys.
Polymorphisms of genes participating in iron transportation have been associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD) risk. The association between transferrin (TF) gene rs1049296 (P570S) polymorphism and AD is controversial.
We performed meta analysis on data from 19 studies with 6310 cases and 13661 controls to reexamine the association between the TF gene rs1049296 polymorphism and AD. We applied a fixed-effects model to combine the odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI). Egger's test was carried out to evaluate the potential publication bias.
The overall ORs with 95% CIs showed statistical association between the TF gene rs1049296 polymorphism and the risk of AD in the allele contrast, the recessive model and the dominant model for allele C2 (fixed-effects pooled OR 1.11; 95% CI 1.05 to 1.17, pooled OR 1.13; 95% CI 1.06 to 1.21, and pooled OR 1.23; 95% CI 1.03 to 1.47, respectively). In the contrast of C2C2+C2C1 vs C1C1, large heterogeneity among the Asian subgroup (p=0.041, I2= 68.6%) was observed but not among the overall population (p = 0.184, I2= 22.4%). No publication bias was observed.
The present meta analysis demonstrated that TF gene rs1049296 polymorphism is a genetic determinant of AD.
Power consumption and dissipation during electrical operation lead to a temperature rise in the package. Elevated temperature in the package structure induces thermo-mechanical stresses which may increase reliability risks. Robust and reliable package design for power systems requires comprehensive analysis of system electrical, thermal, and mechanical behavior. This paper presents a self-consistent approach for package reliability analysis with coupled electro-thermal and thermo-mechanical modeling using TCAD tools.
In this study, Au/aminosilica composite nanospheres have been synthesized via a simple one-pot route using HAuCl4 and N-(3-trimethoxysilylpropyl)-ethylenediamine as starting materials. Scanning electron microscopy results show that these spheres are with diameters of about 300 nm. The obtained Au/aminosilica nanospheres were used as nonviral carriers for gene delivery. Compared with commercial Lipofectamine 2000, the Au/aminosilica nanospheres are with higher transfection efficiency and lower cytotoxicity. Furthermore, the nanospheres are biocompatible, which may find applications in gene delivery and drug carrier.