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In this paper, we present a version of Guan-Zhou’s optimal
extension theorem and its application. As a main application, we show that under a natural condition, the question posed by Ohsawa in his series paper VIII on the extension of
holomorphic functions holds. We also give an explicit counterexample which shows that the question fails in general.
Mutation in CFAP43 leads to severe asthenozoospermia and multiple morphological abnormalities of the sperm flagellum (MMAF) in both human and mouse. Previous studies have shown that disruption of intra-manchette transport (IMT) caused failure of flagellum assembly and sperm head shaping. In a previous study, therefore, we postulated that disruption of IMT may contribute to the failure of sperm flagellum formation and result in MMAF, however the mechanisms underlying these defects are still poorly understood. Cfap43-deficient mice were studied here to reveal the cellular mechanisms of abnormal sperm head morphology and MMAF. Depletion of Cfap43 led to abnormal spermiogenesis and caused MMAF, sperm head abnormality and oligozoospermia. Furthermore, both abnormal manchette and disorganized ectoplasmic specialization (ES) could be observed at the elongated spermatids in Cfap43-deficient mice. Therefore, our findings demonstrated that, in mice, CFAP43-mediated IMT is essential for sperm head shaping and sperm flagellum formation.
Thrombocytopenia occasionally occurs following the closure of some giant patent ductus arteriosus cases. Unfortunately, there is no associated research describing the associated risk factors for thrombocytopenia post-procedure.
We reviewed all patients who received occluders with sizes ≥10/12 mm between January 2013 and June 2019. All the data and information on the characteristics of the patients and their follow-up were recorded. Univariate analysis, receiver operating characteristic curves, and linear regression were used to analyse the risk factors for thrombocytopenia and the predictors of hospitalisation stay.
Finally, 32 patients (17.5%) suffered from thrombocytopenia. Univariate analysis revealed the ratio between occluder disc size (mm) and body weight (kg) (1.71 ± 0.51 versus 1.35 ± 0.53) as an independent predictive factor for thrombocytopenia, and the area under the curve of the ratio of occluder size and body weight for predicting thrombocytopenia post-closure was 0.691 (95% confidence interval: 0.589–0.792, p = 0.001). The best cut-off value for the ratio of occluder size and weight was 1.5895, with a sensitivity and specificity of 68.8 and 66.9%, respectively. Each unit of the ratio of occluder size and body weight predicted an average hospitalisation stay of 2.856 days (95% confidence interval: 1.380–4.332). Treatment with medication did not reduce the hospitalisation stay or benefit platelet restoration.
Once the ratio of occluder size and body weight is greater than 1.6, thrombocytopenia always exists. Every unit of the ratio of occluder size and body weight represents an additional 3 days of hospitalisation. Treatment does not reduce the duration of hospitalisation.
A recently developed pneumonia caused by SARS-CoV-2 has quickly spread across the world. Unfortunately, a simplified risk score that could easily be used in primary care or general practice settings has not been developed. The objective of this study is to identify a simplified risk score that could easily be used to quickly triage severe COVID-19 patients. All severe and critical adult patients with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 on the West campus of Union Hospital, Wuhan, China, from 28 January 2020 to 29 February 2020 were included in this study. Clinical data and laboratory results were obtained. CURB-65 pneumonia score was calculated. Univariate logistic regressions were applied to explore risk factors associated with in-hospital death. We used the receiver operating characteristic curve and multivariate COX-PH model to analyse risk factors for in-hospital death. A total of 74 patients (31 died, 43 survived) were finally included in the study. We observed that compared with survivors, non-survivors were older and illustrated higher respiratory rate, neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio, D-dimer and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), but lower SpO2 as well as impaired liver function, especially synthesis function. CURB-65 showed good performance for predicting in-hospital death (area under curve 0.81, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.71–0.91). CURB-65 ⩾ 2 may serve as a cut-off value for prediction of in-hospital death in severe patients with COVID-19 (sensitivity 68%, specificity 81%, F1 score 0.7). CURB-65 (hazard ratio (HR) 1.61; 95% CI 1.05–2.46), LDH (HR 1.003; 95% CI 1.001–1.004) and albumin (HR 0.9; 95% CI 0.81–1) were risk factors for in-hospital death in severe patients with COVID-19. Our study indicates CURB-65 may serve as a useful prognostic marker in COVID-19 patients, which could be used to quickly triage severe patients in primary care or general practice settings.
Early life stress has been associated with emotional dysregulations and altered architecture of limbic-prefrontal brain systems engaged in emotional processing. Serotonin regulates both, developmental and experience-dependent neuroplasticity in these circuits. Central serotonergic biosynthesis rates are regulated by Tryptophan hydroxylase 2 (TPH2) and transgenic animal models suggest that TPH2-gene associated differences in serotonergic signaling mediate the impact of aversive early life experiences on a phenotype characterized by anxious avoidance.
The present study employed an imaging genetics approach that capitalized on individual differences in a TPH2 polymorphism (703G/T; rs4570625) to determine whether differences in serotonergic signaling modulate the effects of early life stress on brain structure and function and punishment sensitivity in humans (n = 252).
Higher maltreatment exposure before the age of 16 was associated with increased gray matter volumes in a circuitry spanning thalamic-limbic-prefrontal regions and decreased intrinsic communication in limbic-prefrontal circuits selectively in TT carriers. In an independent replication sample, associations between higher early life stress and increased frontal volumes in TT carriers were confirmed. On the phenotype level, the genotype moderated the association between higher early life stress exposure and higher punishment sensitivity. In TT carriers, the association between higher early life stress exposure and punishment sensitivity was critically mediated by increased thalamic-limbic-prefrontal volumes.
The present findings suggest that early life stress shapes the neural organization of the limbic-prefrontal circuits in interaction with individual variations in the TPH2 gene to promote a phenotype characterized by facilitated threat avoidance, thus promoting early adaptation to an adverse environment.
This cross-sectional study aimed to examine the associations between dietary fibre (DF) intake and depressive symptoms in a general adult population in Tianjin, China. A total of 24 306 participants (mean age 41 years; range 18–91 years) were enrolled. DF intake was assessed using a validated self-administered FFQ. Depressive symptoms were assessed using the Self-Rating Depression Scale. Associations between DF intake and depressive symptoms were estimated using logistic regression analysis. Socio-demographic, behavioural, health status and dietary factors were adjusted. In men, compared with participants in the lowest quartiles for total, soluble, vegetable and soya DF, OR for depressive symptoms in the highest were 0·83 (95 % CI 0·69, 0·99), 0·74 (95 % CI 0·63, 0·87), 0·79 (95 % CI 0·65, 0·96) and 0·69 (95 % CI 0·60, 0·81), respectively. In women, compared with participants in the lowest quartiles for vegetable and soya DF, the OR for depressive symptoms in the highest were 0·77 (95 % CI 0·64, 0·93) and 0·82 (95 % CI 0·70, 0·95), respectively. No association was found between total or soluble DF intake and depressive symptoms in women. No association was found between insoluble, cereal, fruit or tuber DF intake and depressive symptoms in men and women. Linear associations between DF intake and depressive symptoms were only detected for soya DF (men, β = –0·148, P < 0·0001; women, β = –0·069, P = 0·04). Results suggest that intake of soluble, vegetable and soya DF was inversely associated with depressive symptoms. These results should be confirmed through prospective and interventional studies.
No studies have reported on how to relieve distress or relax in medical health workers while wearing medical protective equipment in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. The study aimed to establish which relaxation technique, among six, is the most feasible in first-line medical health workers wearing medical protective equipment.
This was a two-step study collecting data with online surveys. Step 1: 15 first-line medical health workers were trained to use six different relaxation techniques and reported the two most feasible techniques while wearing medical protective equipment. Step 2: the most two feasible relaxation techniques revealed by step 1 were quantitatively tested in a sample of 65 medical health workers in terms of efficacy, no space limitation, no time limitation, no body position requirement, no environment limitation to be done, easiness to learn, simplicity, convenience, practicality, and acceptance.
Kegel exercise and autogenic relaxation were the most feasible techniques according to step 1. In step 2, Kegel exercise outperformed autogenic relaxation on all the 10 dimensions among the 65 participants while wearing medical protective equipment (efficacy: 24 v. 15, no space limitation: 30 v. 4, no time limitation: 31 v. 4, no body position requirement: 26 v. 4, no environment limitation: 30 v. 11, easiness to learn: 28 v. 5, simplicity: 29 v. 7, convenience: 29 v. 4, practicality: 30 v. 14, acceptance: 32 v. 6).
Kegel exercise seems a promising self-relaxation technique for first-line medical health workers while wearing medical protective equipment among COVID-19 pandemic.
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the hepatic manifestation of the metabolic syndrome. Recent evidence has suggested the protective effects of honey consumption against the metabolic syndrome, but the association between honey intake and NAFLD is still unclear. We investigated how the consumption frequency of honey was associated with NAFLD in the general population. This was a cross-sectional study of 21 979 adults aged 20–90 years. NAFLD was diagnosed based on the ultrasound-diagnosed fatty liver without significant alcohol intake and other liver diseases. Diet information, including consumption frequency of honey, was assessed by a validated 100-item FFQ. OR with 95 % CI were calculated by the binary logistic regression model, adjusting for confounding factors identified by the directed acyclic graph. Overall, 6513 adults (29·6 %) had NAFLD. Compared with participants consuming ≤1 time/week of honey, the multivariable OR of NAFLD were 0·86 (95 % CI 0·77, 0·97) for 2–6 times/week and 1·10 (95 % CI 0·95, 1·27) for ≥1 times/d (Pfor trend = 0·90). The results were generally similar in subgroups of BMI at a cut-point of 24·0 kg/m2 (Pfor interaction = 0·10). In this large-scale study, consuming honey 2–6 times/week was inversely associated with NAFLD, whereas consuming honey ≥1 times/d had no association with NAFLD. These results need replication in other large-scale prospective studies.
In this paper, the microstructure and the shear property of Cu/In–45Cu/Ni solder joints by transient liquid phase were studied, and the intermetallic compounds (IMCs) growth mechanism was investigated. The results showed that the IMCs volume ratio of solder joints was increased firstly and then decreased with increasing bonding time, and the IMCs volume ratio reached its maximum value of 95.8% at 60 min. The Cu interfacial IMC of the solder joint with dense microstructure was Cu2In phase at 60 min, and the Ni interfacial IMC was Ni3In7. The maximum shear strength of solder joints was obtained at 60 min, which is 15.21 MPa. The shear fracture appeared honeycomb structure, and the fracture occurred at the phase interface of Ni3In7/Cu11In9. The thickness of the interfacial IMCs and the white IMCs around the Cu particles (Cu@IMC) was increased continuously with increasing bonding time, and thus, the interconnection of Cu–Ni substrates was realized ultimately.
In order to maintain the no-slip condition and the divergence-free property simultaneously, an iterative scheme of immersed boundary method in the finite element framework is presented. In this method, the Characteristic-based Split scheme is employed to solve the momentum equations and the formulation for the pressure and the extra body force is derived according to the no-slip condition. The extra body force is divided into two divisions, one is in relation to the pressure and the other is irrelevant. Two corresponding independent iterations are set to solve the two sections. The novelty of this method lies in that the correction of the velocity increment is included in the calculation of the extra body force which is relevant to the pressure and the update of the force is incorporated into the iteration of the pressure. Hence, the divergence-free properties and no-slip conditions are ensured concurrently. In addition, the current method is validated with well-known benchmarks.
For a wide range of insect species, the microbiota has potential roles in determining host developmental programme, immunity and reproductive biology. The tea geometrid moths Ectropis obliqua and E. grisescens are two closely related species that mainly feed on tea leaves. Although they can mate, infertile hybrids are produced. Therefore, these species provide a pair of model species for studying the molecular mechanisms of microbiotal involvement in host reproductive biology. In this study, we first identified and compared the compositions of microbiota between these sibling species, revealing higher microbiotal diversity for E. grisescens. The microbiota of E. obliqua mainly comprised the phyla Firmicutes, Proteobacteria and Cyanobacteria, whereas that of E. grisescens was dominated by Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria and Firmicutes. At the genus level, the dominant microbiota of E. grisescens included Wolbachia, Enterobacter and Pseudomonas and that of E. obliqua included Melissococcus, Staphylococcus and Enterobacter. Furthermore, we verified the rate of Wolbachia to infect 80 samples from eight different geographical populations, and the results supported that only E. grisescens harboured Wolbachia. Taken together, our findings indicate significantly different microbiotal compositions for E. obliqua and E. grisescens, with Wolbachia possibly being a curial factor influencing the reproductive isolation of these species. This study provides new insight into the mechanisms by which endosymbiotic bacteria, particularly Wolbachia, interact with sibling species.
Toxoplasma gondii rhoptry protein TgROP18 is a polymorphic virulence effector that targets immunity-related GTPases (IRGs) in rodents. Given that IRGs are uniquely diversified in rodents and not in other T. gondii intermediate hosts, the role of TgROP18 in manipulating non-rodent cells is unclear. Here we show that in human cells TgROP18I interacts with the interferon-gamma-inducible protein N-myc and STAT interactor (NMI) and that this is a property that is unique to the type I TgROP18 allele. Specifically, when expressed ectopically in mammalian cells only TgROP18I co-immunoprecipitates with NMI in IFN-γ-treated cells, while TgROP18II does not. In parasites expressing TgROP18I or TgROP18II, NMI only co-immunoprecipitates with TgROP18I and this is associated with allele-specific immunolocalization of NMI on the parasitophorous vacuolar membrane (PVM). We also found that TgROP18I reduces NMI association with IFN-γ-activated sequences (GAS) in the IRF1 gene promoter. Finally, we determined that polymorphisms in the C-terminal kinase domain of TgROP18I are required for allele-specific effects on NMI. Together, these data further define new host pathway targeted by TgROP18I and provide the first function driven by allelic differences in the highly polymorphic ROP18 locus.
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.
Six acidic dykes were discovered surrounding the Laiziling pluton, Xianghualing area, in the western Cathaysia Block, South China. A number of captured zircons are found in two of these acidic dykes. By detailed U–Pb dating, Lu–Hf isotopes and trace-element analysis, we find that these zircons have ages clustered at c. 2.5 Ga. Two acidic dyke samples yielded upper intersection point 206U/238Pb ages of 2505 ± 42 Ma and 2533 ± 22 Ma, and weighted mean 207Pb/206Pb ages of 2500 ± 30 Ma and 2535 ± 16 Ma. The majority of these zircons have high (Sm/La)N, Th/U and low Ce/Ce* ratios, indicating a magmatic origin, but some grains were altered by later hydrothermal fluid. Additionally, the magmatic zircons have high Y, U, heavy rare earth element, Nb and Ta contents, indicating that their host rocks were mainly mafic rocks or trondhjemite–tonalite–granodiorite rock series. Equally, their moderate Y, Yb, Th, Gd and Er contents also indicate that a mafic source formed in a continental volcanic-arc environment. These zircons have positive ϵHf(t) values (2.5–6.9) close to zircons from the depleted mantle, with TDM (2565–2741 Ma) and TDM2 (2608–2864 Ma) ages close to their formation ages, indicating that these zircons originated directly from depleted mantle magma, or juvenile crust derived from the depleted mantle in a very short period. We therefore infer that the Cathaysia Block experienced a crustal growth event at c. 2.5 Ga.
The evolution of melt ponds on Arctic sea ice in summer is one of the main factors that affect sea-ice albedo and hence the polar climate system. Due to the different spectral properties of open water, melt pond and sea ice, the melt pond fraction (MPF) can be retrieved using a fully constrained least-squares algorithm, which shows a high accuracy with root mean square error ~0.06 based on the validation experiment using WorldView-2 image. In this study, the evolution of ponds on first-year and multiyear ice in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago was compared based on Sentinel-2 and Landsat 8 images. The relationships of pond coverage with air temperature and albedo were analysed. The results show that the pond coverage on first-year ice changed dramatically with seasonal maximum of 54%, whereas that on multiyear ice changed relatively flat with only 30% during the entire melting period. During the stage of pond formation, the ponds expanded rapidly when the temperature increased to over 0°C for three consecutive days. Sea-ice albedo shows a significantly negative correlation (R = −1) with the MPF in melt season and increases gradually with the refreezing of ponds and sea ice.
Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) has presented an unprecedented challenge to the health-care system across the world. The current study aims to identify the determinants of illness severity of COVID-19 based on ordinal responses. A retrospective cohort of COVID-19 patients from four hospitals in three provinces in China was established, and 598 patients were included from 1 January to 8 March 2020, and divided into moderate, severe and critical illness group. Relative variables were retrieved from electronic medical records. The univariate and multivariate ordinal logistic regression models were fitted to identify the independent predictors of illness severity. The cohort included 400 (66.89%) moderate cases, 85 (14.21%) severe and 113 (18.90%) critical cases, of whom 79 died during hospitalisation as of 28 April. Patients in the age group of 70+ years (OR = 3.419, 95% CI: 1.596–7.323), age of 40–69 years (OR = 1.586, 95% CI: 0.824–3.053), hypertension (OR = 3.372, 95% CI: 2.185–5.202), ALT >50 μ/l (OR = 3.304, 95% CI: 2.107–5.180), cTnI >0.04 ng/ml (OR = 7.464, 95% CI: 4.292–12.980), myohaemoglobin>48.8 ng/ml (OR = 2.214, 95% CI: 1.42–3.453) had greater risk of developing worse severity of illness. The interval between illness onset and diagnosis (OR = 1.056, 95% CI: 1.012–1.101) and interval between illness onset and admission (OR = 1.048, 95% CI: 1.009–1.087) were independent significant predictors of illness severity. Patients of critical illness suffered from inferior survival, as compared with patients in the severe group (HR = 14.309, 95% CI: 5.585–36.659) and in the moderate group (HR = 41.021, 95% CI: 17.588–95.678). Our findings highlight that the identified determinants may help to predict the risk of developing more severe illness among COVID-19 patients and contribute to optimising arrangement of health resources.
Pulsed-xenon-ultraviolet light (PX-UVL) is increasingly used as a supplemental disinfection method in healthcare settings. We undertook a systematic search of the literature through several databases and conducted a meta-analysis to evaluate the efficacy of PX-UVL in reducing healthcare-associated infections. Eleven studies were included in the systematic review and nine in the meta-analysis. Pooled analysis of seven studies with before-after data indicated a statistically significant reduction of Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) rates with the use of the PX-UVL (incidence rate ratio (IRR): 0.73, 95% CI 0.57–0.94, I2 = 72%, P = 0.01), and four studies reported a reduction of risk of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections (IRR: 0.79, 95% CI 0.64–0.98, I2 = 35%, P = 0.03). However, a further four trials found no significant reduction in vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE) infection rates (IRR: 0.80, 95% CI 0.63–1.01, I2 = 60%, P = 0.06). The results for CDI and MRSA proved unstable on sensitivity analysis. Meta-regression analysis did not demonstrate any influence of study duration or intervention duration on CDI rates. We conclude that the use of PX-UVL, in addition to standard disinfection protocols, may help to reduce the incidence of CDI and MRSA but not VRE infection rates. However, the quality of evidence is not high, with unstable results and wide confidence intervals, and further high-quality studies are required to supplement the current evidence.
Witherite originates from the biochemical sedimentation of barium in sea water. Due to the complexity of the metallogenic environment, witherite appears in many morphologies. However, the relationship between its diverse morphologies and its mineralisation environment is not well understood. In this paper, Ca2+, a common substitute for Ba2+, and mixed protein (egg white) were used to simulate the inorganic and organic environments of witherite mineralisation, respectively. Comparison of samples prepared under different conditions showed that Ca2+ and egg white have relatively independent regulatory effects on the mineralisation of witherite particles. Egg white primarily limits the growth of the nanocrystals, while Ca2+ directs their non-isodiametric growth. Results shows that Ca2+ is distributed along a gradient in nanocrystalline witherite particles, with the Ca2+ content being proportional to the diameter of the nanocrystals. The results of this study shed light on the different roles of organic matter and inorganic ions in the formation of witherite and offer insight into the genesis of its various morphologies.