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Echinococcus shiquicus is currently limited to the Qinghai–Tibet plateau, a large mountainous region in China. Although the zoonotic potential remains unknown, progress is being made on the distribution and intermediate host range. In this study, we report E. shiquicus within Gansu and Qinghai provinces in regions located not only around the central areas but also the southeast edge of the plateau and describe their genetic relationship with previous isolates from the plateau. From 1879 plateau pikas examined, 2.39% (95% CI 1.79–3.18) were infected with E. shiquicus. The highest prevalence of 10.26% (4.06–23.58) was recorded in Makehe town, Qinghai province. Overall the prevalence was marginally higher in Qinghai (2.5%, CI 1.82–3.43) than in Gansu (2%, CI 1.02–3.89). The cox1 and nad1 genes demonstrated high and low haplotype and nucleotide diversities, respectively. The median-joining network constructed by the cox1–nad1 gene sequences demonstrated a star-like configuration with a median vector (unsampled haplotype) occupying the centre of the network. No peculiar distinction or common haplotype was observed in isolates originating from the different provinces. The presence of E. shiquicus in regions of the southeast and northeast edges of the Qinghai–Tibet plateau and high genetic variation warrants more investigation into the haplotype distribution and genetic polymorphism by exploring more informative DNA regions of the mitochondrial genome to provide epidemiologically useful insight into the population structure of E. shiquicus across the plateau and its axis.
Systemic Fe overload can contribute to abnormal glucose metabolism and the onset of type 2 diabetes (T2D). Although hepcidin is the master regulator of systemic Fe homeostasis, few studies have systematically evaluated the associations of serum hepcidin concentrations with Fe metabolism parameters and risks for the development of T2D. In this regard, whether hepcidin concentrations are associated with T2D remains controversial. We measured serum hepcidin and ferritin concentrations in a case–control study of 1259 Han Chinese participants to evaluate the possible associations of serum hepcidin concentrations with Fe metabolism parameters and risks of T2D. Individuals with diabetes (n 555) and control participants (n 704) were recruited and serum hepcidin and ferritin concentrations were quantified. Additionally, selected biochemical and anthropometric variables were determined. A logistic regression analysis was performed to evaluate the association of serum hepcidin and ferritin concentrations with T2D. A linear regression analysis was used to test for associations between serum hepcidin and ferritin concentrations and a number of clinical, demographic and diabetes-associated variables. We found that serum hepcidin concentrations correlated with Hb and serum ferritin concentrations. No differences in hepcidin concentrations were found between the group with diabetes and the control group. Hepcidin concentrations were not significantly correlated with T2D risk factors. We also found that serum ferritin concentrations were elevated in individuals with diabetes and were positively correlated with both Hb concentrations and T2D risk factors. The present findings suggest that serum ferritin concentrations correlate with T2D risk factors, while serum hepcidin concentrations are positively associated with Hb and serum ferritin concentrations, but do not correlate with T2D.
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