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Primary liver cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide. Most patients are diagnosed at late stages with poor prognosis, thus identification of modifiable risk factors for primary prevention of liver cancer is urgently needed. The well-established risk factors of liver cancer include chronic infection with hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV), heavy alcohol consumption, metabolic diseases such as obesity and diabetes, and aflatoxin exposure. However, a large proportion of cancer cases worldwide cannot be explained by current known risk factors. Dietary factors have been suspected as important, but dietary etiology of liver cancer remains poorly understood. In this review, we summarized and evaluated the observational studies of diet including single nutrients, food and food groups, as well as dietary patterns with the risk of developing liver cancer. Although there are large knowledge gaps between diet and liver cancer risk, current epidemiologic evidence supports an important role of diet in liver cancer development. For example, exposure to aflatoxin, heavy alcohol drinking, possibly dairy (not including yogurt) intake increase, while intake of coffee, fish, and tea, light-to-moderate alcohol drinking, and several healthy dietary patterns (e.g., Alternative Healthy Eating Index) may decrease liver cancer risk. Future studies with large sample size and accurate diet measurement are warranted, and need to consider issues such as the possible etiological heterogeneity between liver cancer subtypes, the influence of chronic HBV or HCV infection, the high-risk populations (e.g., cirrhosis), and a potential interplay with host gut microbiota or genetic variations.
Flax seed meal (FSM) is rich in various nutrients, especially CP and energy, and can be used as animal protein feed. In animal husbandry production, it is a long-term goal to replace soybean meal (SBM) in animal feed with other plant protein feed. However, studies on the effects of replacing SBM with FSM in fattening sheep are limited. The aim of this experiment was to study the effects of replacing a portion of SBM with FSM on nutrient digestibility, rumen microbial protein synthesis and growth performance in sheep. Thirty-six Dorper × Small Thin-Tailed crossbred rams (BW = 40.4 ± 1.73 kg, mean ± SD) were randomly assigned into four groups. The dietary treatments (forage/concentrate, 45 : 55) were isocaloric according to the nutrient requirements of rams. Soybean meal was replaced with FSM at different levels (DM basis): (1) 18% SBM (18SBM), (2) 12% SBM and 6% FSM (6FSM), (3) 6% SBM and 12% FSM (12FSM) and (4) 18% FSM (18FSM). The rams were fed in individual pens for 60 days, with the first 10 days for adaptation to diets, and then the digestibility of nutrients was determined. There was no significant difference in DM intake, but quadratic (P < 0.001) effects on the average daily gain and feed efficiency were detected, with the highest values in the 6FSM and 12FSM groups. For DM and NDF digestibility, quadratic effects were observed with the higher values in the 6FSM and 12FSM groups, but the digestibility of CP linearly decreased with the increase in FSM in the diet (P = 0.043). There was a quadratic (P < 0.001) effect of FSM inclusion rate on the estimated microbial CP yield. However, the values of intestinally absorbable dietary protein decreased linearly (P < 0.001). For the supply of metabolisable protein, both the linear (P = 0.001) and quadratic (P = 0.044) effects were observed with the lowest value in the 18FSM group. Overall, the results indicated that SBM can be effectively replaced by FSM in the diets of fattening sheep and the optimal proportion was 12.0% under the conditions of this experiment.
The X-ray emissions in the interaction of 3–6 MeV Xe23+ ions into thick solid In target are measured. The projectile-to-target and target Lα/Lβ X-ray production intensity ratios are observed to strongly depend on the projectile energy. The dependence deviates from Coulomb ionization predictions, which implies the important roles of coupling between subshells and the activation of 4fσ rotational couplings for projectile energy larger than 5 MeV.
The aim of this study was to investigate the combined effect of n-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA, at an EPA:DHA ratio of 150:500) and phytosterol esters (PS) on non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) patients. We conducted a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Ninety-six NAFLD subjects were randomly assigned to the following groups: the PS group (receiving 3·3 g/d PS); the FO group (receiving 450 mg EPA + 1500 mg DHA/d); the PS + FO combination group (receiving 3·3 g/d PS and 450 mg EPA + 1500 mg DHA/d) and the PO group (a placebo group). The baseline clinical characteristics of the four groups were similar. The primary outcome was liver:spleen attenuation ratio (L:S ratio). The percentage increase in liver–spleen attenuation (≤1) in the PS + FO group was 36 % (P = 0·083), higher than those in the other three groups (PS group, 11 %, P = 0·519; FO group, 18 %, P = 0·071; PO group, 15 %, P = 0·436). Compared with baseline, transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) was significantly decreased in the three study groups at the end of the trial (PS, P = 0·000; FO, P = 0·002; PS + FO, P = 0·001) and TNF-α was significantly decreased in the FO group (P = 0·036), PS + FO group (P = 0·005) and PO group (P = 0·032) at the end of the intervention. Notably, TGF-β was reduced significantly more in the PS + FO group than in the PO group (P = 0·032). The TAG and total cholesterol levels of the PS + FO group were reduced by 11·57 and 9·55 %, respectively. In conclusion, co-supplementation of PS and EPA + DHA could increase the effectiveness of treatment for hepatic steatosis.
Freshwater habitats in China are potentially suitable for invasive alien turtle species and, consequently, raising turtles in aquaculture facilities and the trade in turtles this supplies pose risks to habitats and native wetland communities when exotic turtles escape or are released deliberately. Online trade (e-commerce) is making an increasing contribution to turtle sales in China, seemingly driving demand and thus potentially exacerbating the risk of release. We document the scale and spatial pattern of online sales of non-native turtles over 90 days on China's Taobao.com e-commerce site. The majority of sales were in the ecologically sensitive middle and lower Yangtze river basin (82.35% of > 840,000 slider turtles Trachemys scripta elegans, and 68.26% of > 100,000 snapping turtles, Chelydridae spp.). These species are native to the Americas. Concurrently, over 2008–2018, we found 104 mentions of feral turtle issues listed on Baidu News where, among the 53 prefectures mentioned, issues with invasive turtle populations also focused predominantly in the middle and lower Yangtze river basin. Although circumstantial, this association suggests that the substantial online sale of alien turtles could be having detrimental effects in China's Yangtze river basin. It is important to safeguard these wetland habitats, which are of global importance, by improving policies for detecting and regulating invasive alien turtle issues and by warning consumers about the ecological hazard of their purchases.
The surface energy budget over the Antarctic sea ice from 8 April 2016 through 26 November 2016 are presented. From April to October, Sensible heat flux (SH) and subsurface conductive heat flux (G) were the heat source of surface while latent heat flux (LE) and net radiation flux (Rn) were the heat sink of surface. Our results showed larger downward SH (due to the warmer air in our site) and upward LE (due to the drier air and higher wind speed in our site) compared with SHEBA data. However, the values of SH in N-ICE2015 campaign, which located at a zone with stronger winds and more advection of heat in the Arctic, were comparable to our results under clear skies. The values of aerodynamic roughness length (z0m) and scalar roughness length for temperature (z0h), being 1.9 × 10−3 m and 3.7 × 10−5 m, were suggested in this study. It is found that snow melting might increase z0m. Our results also indicate that the value of log(z0h/z0m) was related to the stability of stratification. In addition, several representative parameterization schemes for z0h have been tested and a couple of schemes were found to make a better performance.
Autonomous ships are gaining in importance and are expected to shape the future of the global shipping industry. This evolutionary shift raises serious issues about compliance with the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea 1972 (COLREGs). This paper reviews the literature on autonomous ships from the perspective of the obligations of good seamanship imposed by COLREGs. The authors conclude that to facilitate the introduction of autonomous ships, the application barriers presented by COLREGs need to be analysed. With this goal, this paper presents a perspective from navigational practice. Four nautical scientists and two deck officers were invited to give their opinions. The analysis indicates that COLREGs require further elaboration and amendments to eliminate uncertainty of interpretation. In particular, the paper highlights the need to amend the ‘look-out’ rule (COLREGs Rule 5) to permit look-out by ‘computer vision’ alone while, at the same time, preserving the distinction between vessels navigating in restricted visibility and in sight of one another.
Metabolically healthy obesity refers to a subset of obese people with a normal metabolic profile. We aimed to explore the association between metabolically healthy and obesity status and risk of hypertension among Chinese adults from The Rural Chinese Cohort Study. This prospective cohort study enrolled 9137 Chinese adults without hypertension, type 2 diabetes or treatment for lipid abnormality at baseline (2007–2008) and followed up during 2013–2014. Modified Poisson regression models were used to examine the risk of hypertension by different metabolically healthy and obesity status, estimating relative risks (RR) and 95 % CI. During 6 years of follow-up, we identified 1734 new hypertension cases (721 men). After adjusting for age, sex, smoking and other confounding factors, risk of hypertension was increased with metabolically healthy general obesity (MHGO) defined by BMI (RR 1·75, 95 % CI 1·02, 3·00) and metabolically healthy abdominal obesity (MHAO) defined by waist circumference (RR 1·51, 95 % CI 1·12, 2·04) as compared with metabolically healthy non-obesity. The associations between metabolically healthy and obesity status and hypertension outcome were consistent after stratifying by sex, age, smoking, alcohol drinking and physical activity. Both MHGO and MHAO were associated with increased risk of hypertension. Obesity control programmes should be implemented to prevent or delay the development of hypertension in rural China.
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is an autosomal dominant hereditary disease characterised by left ventricular asymmetry hypertrophy. However, our knowledge of the genetic background in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy cases is limited. Here, we aimed to evaluate pathogenic gene mutations in a family with high-risk hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and analyse the genotype/phenotype relationships in this family.
The proband, her parents, and her niece underwent whole-exome sequencing, and the genotypes of family members were identified using Sanger sequencing. mRNA expression was detected using reverse transcription sequencing. Structural impairments were predicted by homologous modelling. A family survey was conducted for patients with positive results to obtain information on general clinical symptoms, electrocardiography, ambulatory electrocardiography, echocardiography, and 3.0T cardiac magnetic resonance findings. Regular follow-up was performed for up to 6 months.
Five family members, including the proband, carried a cleavage site mutation in the MYBPC3 gene (c.2737+1 (IVS26) G>T), causing exon 26 of the MYBPC3 gene transcript to be skipped and leading to truncation of cardiac myosin-binding protein C. Family survey showed that the earliest onset age was 13 years old, and three people had died suddenly at less than 40 years old. Three pathogenic gene carriers were diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and all showed severe ventricular septal hypertrophy.
The c.2737+1 (IVS26) G>T mutation in the MYBPC3 gene led to exon 26 skipping, thereby affecting the structure and function of cardiac myosin-binding protein C and leading to severe ventricular hypertrophy and sudden death.
Thermal perception is crucial for the fitness of marine invertebrates in intertidal and shallow waters. TRPA1 is a non-selective cation channel that belongs to the TRP family with pivotal roles in initiating signal transduction of thermal perception. We investigated expression patterns of SiTRPA1 in different tissues (tube feet, coelomocytes, gonads and gut) of the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus intermedius. SiTRPA1 expression patterns under acute and long-term temperature stimuli were investigated in tube feet of sea urchins. In the present study, the highest expression of SiTRPA1 was detected in tube feet of S. intermedius. The SiTRPA1 expression level in tube feet were significantly 235.7-fold, 450.0-fold and 3299.7-fold higher than those in the coelomocytes, gonads and gut (df = 3, F = 47.382, P < 0.001). Expression levels of SiTRPA1 in the other tissues (coelomocytes, gonads and gut) were not significantly different (df = 3, F = 47.382, P = 0.972). There was no significant difference of SiTRPA1 expression among all groups in the acute temperature increase experiment (df = 4, F = 0.25, P = 0.902). In the acute temperature decrease experiment, the expression of SiTRPA1 showed no significant difference among all groups (df = 4, F = 1.802, P = 0.205). With long-term exposure (6 weeks) to different temperatures, SiTRPA1 expression in the low temperature group (10°C) was significantly higher than those in the high temperature (20°C) and the control groups (15°C) (df = 2, F = 9.57, P = 0.014). There was no significant difference of SiTRPA1 expression between the high temperature (20°C) and the control temperature (15°C) groups (df = 2, F = 9.57, P = 0.808). These results indicate that SiTRPA1 expression significantly responds to long-term low temperature but not to acute temperature decrease. The present study provides new insights on the distribution and temporal expression of TRPA1 in marine invertebrates after acute and long-term temperature stimuli.
The dipeptide dl-methionyl-dl-methionine (Met-Met) has extremely low water solubility and better absorption than other methionine sources (such as dl-methionine and l-methionine) available in the market. Therefore, six diets (D1, D2, D3, D4, D5 and D6) containing 0, 0·07, 0·15, 0·21, 0·28 and 0·38 % Met-Met were formulated to investigate the effects of Met-Met in juvenile Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus (17 g initial body weight). The results indicated that percentage weight gain and specific growth rate of fish fed with D2 and D3 diets were higher than those fed with D1, D4–D6 diets. The levels of total essential amino acid in whole body of fish fed with D3 and D4 diets were significantly higher than those fed the D1 diet. Superoxide dismutase activity and malondialdehyde content have no significant difference in fish fed the diet with or without Met-Met supplementation. Majority of reads derived from the fish intestine belonged to members of Fusobacteria, followed by Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria. Diversity of intestinal microbiota and total antioxidant capacity in fish fed with D3 diet was significantly higher than that of other groups. Based on the growth results, the authors conclude that the optimal level of Met is 0·61 % Met with the addition of 0·15 % Met-Met for grower-phase O. niloticus.
Radiocarbon (14C) has become a unique and powerful tracer in source apportionment of atmospheric carbonaceous particles. In this study, the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit (APEC) held in Beijing in 2014 was used as a demonstration to research the source apportionment of atmosphere PM2.5. We used a 200 kV single stage accelerator mass spectrometer recently completed at China Institute of Atomic Energy (CIAE). The PM2.5 samples related to above case were collected, and the characteristics of radiocarbon in organic carbon (OC) and elemental carbon (EC) in samples were analyzed using the AMS. The results show that the Before-APEC pollution emission mode is different from the During-APEC and After-APEC pollution emission modes. For Before-APEC, During-APEC and After-APEC, the average values of fossil carbon fraction of OC are 0.463, 0.431 and 0.615, respectively, and those of EC are 0.644, 0.561 and 0.687. The fossil source contributions of traffic activities using fossil fuels to OC and EC are 15.8 % and 21.9 %, respectively. The fossil source contributions of industrial activities to OC and EC are 38.0 % and 8.2 %, respectively. It is about 7–10 days that is needed to take to regenerate the PM2.5 pollution caused by human activities.
The regeneration of human tissues with complex anatomy such as gastrointestinal (GI) tract remains greatly challenging since it requires appropriate cell microenvironments with well-defined structural and biochemical cues. In this investigation, bilayer scaffolds consisting of different polymer nanofibers with orthogonal fiber orientations were prepared, in which vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) were encapsulated separately. The bilayer scaffolds have similar architecture to the anatomy of the GI tract and can achieve dual releases of VEGF and PDGF in sequential and sustained manners, which hold promise as appropriate cell microenvironments for promoting the regeneration of the GI tract.
We identified and characterized a new cosmocercid nematode species, Cosmocercoides wuyiensis n. sp., through microscopic examination and sequencing of the partial small ribosomal RNA gene (18S rDNA), internal transcribed spacer (ITS) and mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (COI) genes. The new species was isolated from the intestine of the Asiatic frog Amolops wuyiensis Liu and Hu, 1975 captured from four localities of the Anhui province in south-east China. Among the 25 recorded species of the Cosmocercoides genus, the morphology of C. wuyiensis n. sp. is closest to that of C. kiliwai and C. malayensis, which were isolated from various Mexican frog and Malaysian lizard species, respectively. However, C. wuyiensis n. sp. displayed several distinguishing features, such as small size of the male body, two spicules of unequal lengths in the male, small gubernaculum, pre-, ad- and post-cloacal caudal rosette papillae in the ratio of 18–24:2:6 and simple papillae in the ratio of 14:multiple:4, circle and number of punctation in each rosette at 1:11–16, sharply conical tail-end and the presence of lateral alae and somatic papillae in both sexes. BLAST and the phylogenetic analyses of the 18S rDNA and ITS sequences indicated that C. wuyiensis n. sp. belonged to the genus Cosmocercoides, while that of the COI gene sequence of C. wuyiensis n. sp. showed 16.36% nucleotide divergence with C. pulcher and 47.99% nucleotide divergence with C. qingtianensis. The morphological and molecular characterization of C. wuyiensis n. sp. provides new taxonomic data for this genus.
Dalian, China, is a city free of rabies in recent 20 years, but the annual cost for rabies vaccination still brings an economic burden on society and individuals. We did a retrospective descriptive analysis to analyse the reason for this and try to find some ways to resolve it. A total of 10 028 post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) cases were recorded from January 2016 to December 2017. According to the exposure grades, 32 cases were grade I; 7712 cases were grade II; 2284 cases were grade III. All the patients in the cases were injured by pet dogs without abnormal clinical signs, and 80% of them were home pet dogs. Fifty-two per cent of the pet dogs were vaccinated. All the dogs survived during the PEP vaccination period. The data showed that a considerable proportion of people who did not have exposure risk for rabies had received vaccination. The underlying reasons included social, medical and personal factors. So here we proposed to replace the current ‘five-course’ intramuscular injection with intradermal injection method in the cities free of rabies in China, this can not only achieve effective vaccination but also save resources and eliminate the fear of rabies from victims. Meanwhile we should strengthen communication on rabies knowledge and make a routine evaluation of rabies surveillance system to improve understanding of the risk for rabies from biting animals.
The language history questionnaire (LHQ) is an important tool for assessing the linguistic background and language proficiency of multilinguals or second language learners. Previously we developed a generic LHQ based on the most commonly asked questions in published studies (Li, Sepanski & Zhao, 2006) and provided a web-based interface (LHQ 2.0) that has flexibility in functionality, accuracy in data recording, and privacy for users and data (Li, Zhang, Tsai & Puls, 2014). LHQ3 (version 3) introduces new functions, developed in response to many comments/requests from users. One important improvement is the addition of an automatic scoring system, in that the new interface automatically calculates aggregated scores for language proficiency, language dominance, and language immersion levels. Finally, LHQ3 allows researchers to assign different weights to the modules when calculating the aggregated scores, addressing the issue of different focuses that different researchers put on multilingual speakers’ language usage and background.
In this work, a novel shape-stabilized phase change material, composed of n-octadecane, expanded graphite (EG), and sodium chloride (NaCl), was prepared by a convenient method. In the composite, EG was used as the matrix material and NaCl served as the nucleating agent. Effects of the additional amount of NaCl on the thermal properties of the composite were investigated by DSC and TG. The melting and crystallization enthalpies of the composite are −160.23 J/g and 162.80 J/g, respectively; the supercooling degree of the composite decreased to 3.77 °C when compared to 7.58 °C of the pure n-octadecane. Furthermore, the thermal cycling performances became better, and the thermal decomposition temperature improved to 150 °C. The composite exhibited high latent heat, low supercooling degree, good thermal cycling performance, and enhanced thermal stability, making it a potential material for the thermal energy storage application in the field of thermal regulation.