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Phase retrieval is necessary for propagation-based phase-contrast imaging (PB-PCI). Arhatari established a model for predicting the impact of the sample-to-detector distance and the system noise on the phase retrieval performance. We have extended Arhatari's model to account for the parameters of excessive source size, finite detector resolution, and geometrical magnification for more practical cases. However, there exist interaction effects among these parameters resulting in difficulty of predicting the phase retrieval performance. In this study, we found that optimizing the trade-off among these parameters for phase retrieval is consistent with the improvement of edge enhancement to noise ratio (EE/N) in the “forward problem” of the PB-PCI. Hence, we engaged in establishing a relationship between EE/N and phase retrieval performance in terms of the “forward problem” and “inverse problem” of the PB-PCI, respectively. Our results showed that, at fixed detector resolution, phase retrieval from the phase-contrast projections at the same EE/N level resulted in the consistent phase retrieval performance. Therefore, the performance of phase retrieval can be predicted based on the EE/N level and be quantitatively optimized by increasing EE/N.
Rabbits play an important role in people’s lives due to their high nutritional value and high-quality hair that can be used as raw material for textiles. Furthermore, rabbits are an important animal model for human disease, as genome-edited animals are particularly valuable for studying gene functions and pathogenesis. Somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) is an important technique for producing genome-edited animals and it has great value in saving endangered species and in clone stem cell therapy. However, the low efficiency of SCNT limits its application, with the selection of suitable rabbit oocytes being crucial to its success. In the present study, we collected oocytes from ovarian follicles and stained them with 26 μM brilliant cresyl blue (BCB). We then matured the oocytes in vitro and used them for SCNT. Comparison of the BCB-positive oocytes with BCB-negative oocytes and the control group showed that the BCB-positive group had a significantly higher maturation rate (81.4% vs. 48.9% and 65.3% for the negative and control groups, respectively), cleavage rate (86.6% vs. 67.9% and 77.9%), blastocyst rate (30.5% vs. 12.8% and 19.6%), total number of blastocysts (90±7.5 vs. 65.3±6.3 and 67.5±5.7), and inner cell mass (ICM)/ trophectoderm (TE) index (42.3±4.2 vs. 30.2±2.1 and 33.9±5.1) (P<0.05). The BCB-positive group had a significantly lower apoptosis index (2.1±0.6 vs. 8.2±0.9 and 6.7±1.1 for the negative and control groups, respectively) (P<0.05). These findings demonstrate that BCB-positive oocytes have a higher maturation ability and developmental competence in vitro, indicating that BCB staining is a reliable method for selecting oocytes to enhance the efficiency of SCNT.
In dense networks, the tremendous computational complexity and communication overhead of cooperative localisation are the two main bottlenecks that limit practical application. In this study, we introduce a bootstrap percolation scheme into Gaussian message passing-based cooperative localisation for precise positioning, aimed at reducing the system overhead. Considering the uncertainty information and geometric distribution of neighbours, an approximate collinear detection criterion is proposed to detect the possible flip ambiguities in cooperative localisation. According to the detection result and our connection constraint, agents are divided into three categories and are approximated by different distribution families. A message passing rule is designed to control the propagation direction from high precision to low precision, thereby mitigating potential error propagation. Additionally, a layer-by-layer positioning mechanism is established where the agents are located gradually. Analytical and simulation results indicate that when the ranging standard deviation is 0·2 m, 89·3% of the agent nodes can be located within 0·4 m using the proposed algorithm. Compared with the Hybrid Sum-Product Algorithm over A Wireless Network (H-SPAWN), this ratio is increased by 8·4% and the computational complexity is reduced by 72%.
The water and energy sectors of an economy are inextricably linked. Energy is required in water production, distribution, and recycling, while water is often used for energy generation. In many geographical locations, the energy-water nexus is exacerbated by the shortage of both fresh water resources and energy generation infrastructure. New materials, including metamaterials, are now emerging to address the challenges of providing renewable energy and fresh water, especially to off-the-grid communities struggling with water shortages. Novel nanomaterials have fueled recent technology breakthroughs in solar water desalination, fog and dew collection, and cloud seeding. Materials for passive thermal management of buildings and individuals offer promising strategies to reduce the use of energy and water for heating and cooling. While many challenges remain, emerging materials and technologies improve sustainable management of water and energy resources.
In this paper, we review the status of the multifunctional experimental platform at the National Laboratory of High Power Laser and Physics (NLHPLP). The platform, including the SG-II laser facility, SG-II 9th beam, SG-II upgrade (SG-II UP) facility, and SG-II 5 PW facility, is operational and available for interested scientists studying inertial confinement fusion (ICF) and a broad range of high-energy-density physics. These facilities can provide important experimental capabilities by combining different pulse widths of nanosecond, picosecond, and femtosecond scales. In addition, the SG-II UP facility, consisting of a single petawatt system and an eight-beam nanosecond system, is introduced including several laser technologies that have been developed to ensure the performance of the facility. Recent developments of the SG-II 5 PW facility are also presented.
Haxilegen Glacier No.51 (43.731°N, 84.391°E; CN5Y741C0051) is located in the Kuytun river basin, Erenharbirga range, eastern Tien Shan. This study presents the annual mass balance of Haxilegen Glacier No.51 for 7 hydrological years and uses a temperature-index and an accumulation model to reconstruct the annual mass balance from 1999 to 2015. The model is calibrated against annual altitudinal mass-balance measurements and then applied to the period with no measurements. We find an accumulated mass balance of −6.06 ± 0.88 m w.e.a−1 over the period of 16 hydrological years, with an average annual value of −0.32 ± 0.22 m w.e.a−1. The mean glacier-wide annual, summer and winter balances for 1999 to 2015 are −0.37, −0.54 and 0.16 ± 0.22 m w.e.a−1, respectively, with a high correlation coefficient (r = 0.95, p < 0.001) between annual balance and summer balance. The calculated mass-balance sensitivity of the glacier to temperature is −0.51 m w.e.a−1 °C−1 and to precipitation is 0.08 m w.e.a−1 for a 10% increase. The sensitivity of seasonal mass balance indicates that temperature during the melt season (May–August) and annual precipitation are the major contributors to mass-balance fluctuation.
To investigate the effects of heat stress on broiler metabolism, we assigned 144 broilers to normal control (NC), heat stress (HS) or pair-fed (PF) groups and then monitored the effects using growth performance, carcass characteristics, biochemical assays and GC-MS-based metabolomics. The up-regulation of cloacal temperature confirmed that our experiment was successful in inducing chronic heat stress. The average daily gain and average daily feed intake of the HS group were significantly lower than those of the NC group, by 28·76 and 18·42 %, respectively (P<0·001), whereas the feed:gain ratio was significantly higher, by 14·49 % (P=0·003), and heat stress also increased leg proportion (P=0·027) and intramuscular fat proportion (P<0·001) and decreased breast proportion (P=0·009). When comparing the HS and NC groups and HS and PF groups, our metabolomics approach identified seventy-eight and thirty-four metabolites, respectively, with significantly different levels (variable importance in the projection values >1 and P<0·05). The greater feed:gain ratio of the HS group was significantly positively correlated with the leg, abdominal fat, subcutaneous fat and intramuscular fat proportions and levels of some free amino acids (proline, l-cysteine, methionine and threonine) but was negatively correlated with breast proportion and levels of some NEFA (stearic acid, arachidonic acid, palmitic acid and oleic acid). These findings indicated that the heat-stressed broilers were in negative energy balance and unable to effectively mobilise fat, thereby resulting in protein decomposition, which subsequently affected growth performance and carcass characteristics.
Iron-deficiency anemia is a public health concern that frequently occurs in pregnant mammals and neonatal offspring. Ferrous N-carbamylglycinate chelate (Fe-CGly) is a newly designed iron fortifier with proven effects in iron-deficient rats and weanling piglets. However, the effects of this new compound on pregnant mammals are unknown. Therefore, this experiment was conducted to evaluate the effects of Fe-CGly on sow reproductive performance and iron status of both sows and neonatal piglets. A total of 40 large-white sows after second parity were randomly assigned to two groups (n=20). They were receiving a diet including 80 mg Fe/kg as FeSO4 or Fe-CGly, respectively, from day 85 of gestation to parturition. The serum (day 110 of pregnancy) and placentas of sows were sampled. Litter size, mean weight of live born piglets, birth (live) litter weight, number of live born piglets, and the number of still-born piglets, mummies, and weak-born piglets were recorded. Once delivered, eight litters were randomly selected from the 20 litters per treatment, and one new-born male piglet (1.503±0.142 kg) from each selected litter was slaughtered within 3 h after birth from the selected litters, without colostrum ingestion. The serum, longissimus muscle, liver and kidneys of the piglets were collected. The iron status of the serum samples and the messenger RNA level of iron-related genes in the placenta, liver and kidney were analyzed. The results showed that litter weight of live born piglets was higher (P=0.030) in the Fe-CGly group (19.86 kg) than in the FeSO4 group (17.34 kg). Fe-CGly significantly increased placental iron concentration (P<0.05) of sows. It also significantly increased iron saturation and reduced the total iron-binding capacity of piglets (P<0.05) at birth. However, the results revealed that supplementation of Fe-CGly in sows reduced liver and kidney iron concentration of neonatal piglets (P<0.05), indicating decreased iron storage. In addition, the concentration of iron in the colostrum was not significantly changed. Therefore, the present results suggested that replacement of maternal FeSO4 supplement with Fe-CGly in the late-gestating period for sows could improve litter birth weight, probably via enhanced iron transportation in the placenta.
This study aimed to evaluate the effect of different starch types on liver nutrient metabolism of finishing pigs. In all ninety barrows were randomly allocated to three diets with five replicates of six pigs, containing purified waxy maize starch (WMS), non-waxy maize starch (NMS) and pea starch (PS) (the amylose to amylopectin ratios were 0·07, 0·19 and 0·28, respectively). After 28 d of treatments, two per pen (close to the average body weight of the pen) were weighed individually, slaughtered and liver samples were collected. Compared with the WMS diet, the PS diet decreased the activities of glycogen phosphorylase, phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase and the expression of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase 1 in liver (P<0·05). Moreover, the lipid contents, the concentrations of acetyl-CoA carboxylase, fatty acid synthetase and the expression of sterol regulatory element binding protein-1c in liver of PS and NMS diets were lower than those of WMS diet (P<0·05). However, no effect was observed in the activity of hepatic lipase, the expressions of carbohydrate-responsive element-binding protein, liver X receptor and PPARα (P>0·05). Compared with the WMS diet, the PS diet reduced the expressions of glutamate dehydrogenase and carbamoyl phosphate synthetase 1 in liver (P<0·05). PS diet decreased the expression of the insulin receptor, and increased the expressions of mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 and ribosomal protein S6 kinase β-1 in liver compared with the WMS diet (P<0·05). These findings indicated that the diet with higher amylose content could down-regulate gluconeogenesis, and cause less fat deposition and more protein deposition by affecting the insulin/PI3K/protein kinase B signalling pathway in liver of finishing pigs.
Previous studies have demonstrated that individuals with Internet gaming disorder (IGD) showed attentional bias toward gaming-related cues and exhibited impaired executive functions. The purpose of this study was to explore the alternations in related functional brain networks underlying attentional bias in IGD subjects.
Eighteen IGD subjects and 19 healthy controls (HC) were scanned with functional magnetic resonance imaging while they were performing an addiction Stroop task. Networks of functional connectivity were identified using group independent component analysis (ICA).
ICA identified 4 functional networks that showed differences between the 2 groups, which were related to the right executive control network and visual related networks in our study. Within the right executive control network, in contrast to controls, IGD subjects showed increased functional connectivity in the temporal gyrus and frontal gyrus, and reduced functional connectivity in the posterior cingulate cortex, temporal gyrus, and frontal gyrus.
These findings suggest that IGD is related to abnormal functional connectivity of the right executive control network, and may be described as addiction-related abnormally increased cognitive control processing and diminished response inhibition during an addiction Stroop task. The results suggest that IGD subjects show increased susceptibility towards gaming-related cues but weakened strength of inhibitory control.
This study aimed to investigate the impacts of dietary threonine on intestinal immunity and inflammation in juvenile grass carp. Six iso-nitrogenous semi-purified diets containing graded levels of threonine (3·99–21·66 g threonine/kg) were formulated and fed to fishes for 8 weeks, and then challenged with Aeromonas hydrophila for 14 d. Results showed that, compared with optimum threonine supplementation, threonine deficiency (1) decreased the ability of fish against enteritis, intestinal lysozyme activities (except in the distal intestine), acid phosphatase activities, complement 3 (C3) and C4 contents and IgM contents (except in the proximal intestine (PI)), and it down-regulated the transcript abundances of liver-expressed antimicrobial peptide (LEAP)-2A, LEAP-2B, hepcidin, IgZ, IgM and β-defensin1 (except in the PI) (P<0·05); (2) could up-regulate intestinal pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8 and IL-17D mRNA levels partly related to NF-κB signalling; (3) could down-regulate intestinal anti-inflammatory cytokine transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1, TGF-β2, IL-4/13A (not IL-4/13B) and IL-10 mRNA levels partly by target of rapamycin signalling. Finally, on the basis of the specific growth rate, against the enteritis morbidity and IgM contents, the optimum threonine requirements were estimated to be 14·53 g threonine/kg diet (4·48 g threonine/100 g protein), 15.05 g threonine/kg diet (4·64 g threonine/100 g protein) and 15·17 g threonine/kg diet (4·68 g threonine/100 g protein), respectively.
The present study investigated the effects of dietary vitamin A on immune function in the proximal intestine (PI), mid intestine (MI) and distal intestine (DI) of young grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella). Fish were fed graded levels of dietary vitamin A for 10 weeks, and then a challenge test using an injection of Aeromonas hydrophila was conducted for 14 d. The results showed that, compared with the optimum vitamin A level, vitamin A deficiency significantly decreased fish growth performance, increased enteritis morbidity, decreased intestinal innate humoral immune response and aggravated intestinal inflammation. However, liver-expressed antimicrobial peptide 2A/B mRNA in the DI and IL-6, IL-17D, IL-10, transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1 and TGF-β2 mRNA in the PI were not affected by vitamin A levels. Meanwhile, vitamin A deficiency disturbed inflammatory cytokines in the PI, MI and DI, which might be partly linked to p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38MAPK) signalling and NF-κB canonical signalling pathway (IκB kinase β (IKKβ), IKKγ, inhibitor of κBα, NF-κB p65 and c-Rel) rather than NF-κB non-canonical signalling pathway (NF-κB p52 and IKKα). However, the signalling molecules NF-κB p65 and p38MAPK did not participate in regulating cytokines in the PI. These results suggested that vitamin A deficiency decreased fish growth and impaired intestinal immune function, and that different immune responses in the PI, MI and DI were mediated partly by NF-κB canonical signalling and p38MAPK signalling pathways. On the basis of percentage of weight gain, to protect fish against enteritis morbidity and acid phosphatase activity, the optimum dietary vitamin A levels were estimated to be 0·664, 0·707 and 0·722 mg /kg, respectively.
Wear resistance plays an important role to ensure the machining precision of machine tool using gray cast iron guide rail. Bio-inspired surfaces imitating the cuticle of desert scorpion and shell archetype with alternate units were prepared on gray cast iron using biomimetic coupling laser remelting in air and water. Samples consisting of striature bionic units with various distributions were examined under dry sliding condition using a home-made wear testing machine. It was found that samples with bionic units displayed better wear resistance than the untreated gray cast iron. While samples with bionic units processed in water by laser returned highest wear resistance in the short run, samples with alternatively distributed units (processed by laser) presented better wear resistance in the long run. However, to understand the stress distributions and the wear mechanism of the samples finite element method was used in this study. Based on the experimental evidences, a two-stage wear mechanism was proposed.
A kind of nickel–aluminum bronze (Cu–10Al–4Fe–4Ni) prepared by centrifugal casting (CC) and gravity casting (GC), respectively, were investigated. The results indicate that CC alloy, which is totally different from GC alloy, consists of α, κI, κII, κIII, κIV, and β′ phases and the microstructures of CC alloy shows nonuniformities from external to internal layer mainly because the distribution of iron and nickel are influenced by centrifugal force. Besides, it is noted that comprehensive mechanical properties of CC alloy are superior to those of GC alloy. Additionally, heat treatments were performed on CC alloy. The results demonstrate the optimal heat treatment is aging at 450 °C/1 h by air cooling after solution treated at 890 °C/1 h by water quench. The ultimate tensile strength and hardness are increased by about 10% and 56%, respectively, and wear resistance is also greatly improved. However, the elongation is decreased by 53%.
Three dimensional (3D) porous graphene decorated with MoO2 nanoparticles were successfully synthesized by hydrothermal method and characterized by SEM and TEM, x-ray diffraction, Raman spectra, x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, nitrogen adsorption–desorption analysis and electrochemical experiments. The results revealed that the in situ formed monoclinic MoO2 nanoparticles were randomly decorated on the surface of graphene sheets and the obtained graphene–MoO2 nanohybrids were 3D porous structures. The mass ratio of molybdenum precursor with GO has effects on the specific surface area and the electrochemical properties of the nanocomposite. The M30G1 (the mass ratio of molybdenum precursor with GO was 30:1) composite electrode exhibited a higher specific capacitance and better cycling stability. The specific capacitances were 356 F/g at the current density of 0.1 A/g in KOH electrolyte, which predicted their potential application in energy storage. The electrochemical performance of M30G1 composite was also investigated in Na2SO4 electrolyte, which was poorer than that in KOH electrolyte. Therefore, the chosen of electrolyte is important to materials performance.
This investigation addresses the dynamics of annular viscoelastic films flowing down a flexible tube. The fluid viscoelasticity is assumed to be weak in order to obtain approximate explicit expressions for the stresses. Based on Shkadov’s integral boundary layer method (Fluid Dyn., vol. 2(1), 1967, pp. 29–34), a set of nonlinear evolution equations is derived that is valid for flows with moderate Reynolds numbers. The linear stability property of the system is examined by using normal-mode analysis, which is verified by comparing the results with those resulting from the linearization of the full Navier–Stokes equations. The results indicate that the fluid viscoelasticity plays an unstable role in the stability of the annular film flow. The tube flexibility, which includes wall damping and wall tension, plays a dual role. A bifurcation analysis is performed, and the families of steady travelling waves are catalogued. It is found that the stiffness of the tube tends to stimulate the interfacial capillary ripples. The fluid viscoelasticity acts to strengthen the dispersion of the interfacial waves but weakens the interfacial capillary ripples. The spatio-temporal evolutions of the system are also solved numerically. When the tube radius is small enough, tube closure can be observed due to the Plateau–Rayleigh instability. The fluid viscoelasticity acts to promote tube closure while the tube radius is relatively small. However, it plays a role in postponing the closure of the tube with a large radius.
Many lacustrine chronology records suffer from radiocarbon reservoir effects. A continuous, accurate varve chronology, in conjunction with accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) 14C dating, was used to determine the age of lacustrine sediment and to quantify the past 14C reservoir effect in Sugan Lake (China). Reservoir age varied from 4340 to 2590 yr due to 14C-depleted water in the late Holocene. However, during the Little Ice Age (LIA), 14C reservoir age was relatively stable. According to this study, 14C reservoir age in the late Holocene may be driven by hydrological and climatic changes of this period. Therefore, special caution should be paid to the correction of the 14C reservoir effect by a unique 14C reservoir age in paleoclimatic and paleolimnological study of northwest China.
The valley of the Baxie River, situated in the western region of the Loess Plateau in central China, contains a loess profile 15 m thick, which can be considered representative of loess-paleosol sequences formed over the last 17 ka. Both thermoluminescence (TL) determinations on fine-grained sediment (4–11 μm) and 14C determinations on various organic fractions of paleosols from the profile have provided an extremely useful chronological framework for these sequences. These sequences indicate a weakened summer monsoon during the last glacial maximum followed by a strengthening of the summer monsoon, beginning ca. 13 ka cal bp. An abrupt change to a weakened summer monsoon regime lasted from ca. 10.9 to 10.2 ka cal bp. The Asian summer monsoon circulation, recording the Holocene optimum, then increased and lasted from ca. 10.2 to 6 ka cal bp. The organic component of samples taken down the profile has δ13C values ranging from −21 to −24‰ with respect to the PDB standard. The more positive δ13C values suggest that the proportion of C4-type plants in river valleys of the Loess Plateau increased as Asian summer monsoon influence weakened, and C3-type vegetation increased as the summer monsoon influence strengthened. Magnetic susceptibility and organic content were low during loess deposition, also reflecting weakening of summer monsoon. Two 14C determinations on the humin fraction of the organic component near the top of the lower paleosol and the base of the upper paleosol complex gave ages of 10.2 and 10.9 ka cal BP, respectively. These ages mark the beginning and termination of a brief event involving increased dust influx under weakened summer monsoon conditions.
SG-III laser facility is now the largest laser driver for inertial confinement fusion research in China. The whole laser facility can deliver 180 kJ energy and 60 TW power ultraviolet laser onto target, with power balance better than 10%. We review the laser system and introduce the SG-III laser performance here.