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Sodium niobate (NaNbO3)-based dielectrics have received much attention for energy storage applications due to their low-cost, lightweight, and nontoxic nature. The field-induced metastable ferroelectric phase in NaNbO3-based dielectrics, however, leads to a large hysteresis of the polarization–electric field (P–E) loops and hence deteriorate the energy storage performance. In this study, the hysteresis was successfully reduced by introducing Bi3+ and Ti4+ into A-site and B-site of NaNbO3, respectively. MnO2 addition was added to further increase the ceramic density and enhance the cycling reliability. As a result, a high recoverable energy density of 4.3 J/cm3 and a high energy efficiency of 90% were simultaneously achieved in the ceramic capacitor at an applied electric field of 360 kV/cm. Of particular importance is that the ceramic capacitor exhibits a stable energy storage properties over a wide temperature range of −70 to 170 °C, with much improved electric cycling reliability up to 105 cycles.
Birth weight influences not only brain development, but also mental health outcomes, including depression, but the underlying mechanism is unclear.
The phenotypic data of 12,872–91,009 participants (59.18–63.38% women) from UK Biobank were included to test the associations between the birth weight, depression, and brain volumes through the linear and logistic regression models. As birth weight is highly heritable, the polygenic risk scores (PRSs) of birth weight were calculated from the UK Biobank cohort (154,539 participants, 56.90% women) to estimate the effect of birth weight-related genetic variation on the development of depression and brain volumes. Finally, the mediation analyses of step approach and mediation analysis were used to estimate the role of brain volumes in the association between birth weight and depression. All analyses were conducted sex stratified to assess sex-specific role in the associations.
We observed associations between birth weight and depression (odds ratio [OR] = 0.968, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.957–0.979, p = 2.29 × 10−6). Positive associations were observed between birth weight and brain volumes, such as gray matter (B = 0.131, p = 3.51 × 10−74) and white matter (B = 0.129, p = 1.67 × 10−74). Depression was also associated with brain volume, such as left thalamus (OR = 0.891, 95% CI = 0.850–0.933, p = 4.46 × 10−5) and right thalamus (OR = 0.884, 95% CI = 0.841–0.928, p = 2.67 × 10−5). Additionally, significant mediation effects of brain volume were found for the associations between birth weight and depression through steps approach and mediation analysis, such as gray matter (B = –0.220, p = 0.020) and right thalamus (B = –0.207, p = 0.014).
Our results showed the associations among birth weight, depression, and brain volumes, and the mediation effect of brain volumes also provide evidence for the sex-specific of associations.
The novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has spread to over 213 countries and territories. We sought to describe the clinical features of fatalities in patients with severe COVID-19.
We conducted an Internet-based retrospective cohort study through retrieving the clinical information of 100 COVID-19 deaths from nonduplicating incidental reports in Chinese provincial and other governmental websites between January 23 and March 10, 2020.
Approximately 6 of 10 COVID-19 deaths were males (64.0%). The average age was 70.7 ± 13.5 y, and 84% of patients were elderly (over age 60 y). The mean duration from admission to diagnosis was 2.2 ± 3.8 d (median: 1 d). The mean duration from diagnosis to death was 9.9 ± 7.0 d (median: 9 d). Approximately 3 of 4 cases (76.0%) were complicated by 1 or more chronic diseases, including hypertension (41.0%), diabetes (29.0%) and coronary heart disease (27.0%), respiratory disorders (23.0%), and cerebrovascular disease (12.0%). Fever (46.0%), cough (33.0%), and shortness of breath (9.0%) were the most common first symptoms. Multiple organ failure (67.9%), circulatory failure (20.2%), and respiratory failure (11.9%) are the top 3 direct causes of death.
COVID-19 deaths are mainly elderly and patients with chronic diseases especially cardiovascular disorders and diabetes. Multiple organ failure is the most common direct cause of death.
Since December 2019, China has experienced a widespread outbreak of COVID-19. However, at the early stage of outbreak, investigations revealed a variety of patterns resulting in the transmission of COVID-19. Thus, it is essential to understand the transmission types and the potential for sustained human-to-human transmission. Moreover, the information regarding the characteristics of transmission helps in coordinating the current screening programme, and controlling and containing measures, and also, helps in deciding the appropriate quarantine duration. Thus, this investigation reports an outbreak of COVID-19 in a family residing in Wenzhou, Zhejiang, China during the month of January−February 2020.
Maternal one-carbon metabolism during pregnancy is crucial for fetal development and programming by DNA methylation. However, evidence on one-carbon biomarkers other than folate is lacking. We, therefore, investigated whether maternal plasma methyl donors, that is, choline, betaine and methionine, are associated with birth outcomes. Blood samples were obtained from 115 women during gestation (median 26·3 weeks, 90 % range 22·7–33·0 weeks). Plasma choline, betaine, methionine and dimethylglycine were measured using HPLC-tandem MS. Multivariate linear and logistic regression models were used to estimate the association between plasma biomarkers and birth weight, birth length, the risk of small-for-gestational-age and large-for-gestational-age (LGA). Higher level of maternal betaine was associated with lower birth weight (–130·3 (95 % CI –244·8, –15·9) per 1 sd increment for log-transformed betaine). Higher maternal methionine was associated with lower risk of LGA, and adjusted OR, with 95 % CI for 1 sd increase in methionine concentration was 0·44 (95 % CI 0·21, 0·89). Stratified analyses according to infant sex or maternal plasma homocysteine status showed that reduction in birth weight in relation to maternal betaine was only limited to male infants or to who had higher maternal homocysteine status (≥5·1 µmol/l). Higher maternal betaine status was associated with reduced birth weight. Maternal methionine was inversely associated with LGA risk. These findings are needed to be replicated in future larger studies.
Limited information is available on the prevalence and effect of hypertriglyceridaemic–waist (HTGW) phenotype on the risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) in rural populations.
In the present cross-sectional study, we investigated the prevalence of the HTGW phenotype and T2DM and the strength of their association among rural adults in China.
HTGW was defined as TAG >1·7 mmol/l and waist circumference (WC) ≥90 cm for males and ≥80 cm for females. Logistic regression analysis yielded adjusted odds ratios (aOR) relating risk of T2DM with HTGW.
Adults (n 12 345) aged 22·83–92·58 years were recruited from July to August of 2013 and July to August of 2014 from a rural area of Henan Province in China.
The prevalence of HTGW and T2DM was 23·71 % (males: 15·35 %; females: 28·88 %) and 11·79 % (males: 11·15 %; females: 12·18 %), respectively. After adjustment for sex, age, smoking, alcohol drinking, blood pressure, physical activity and diabetic family history, the risk of T2DM (aOR; 95 % CI) was increased with HTGW (v. normal TAG and WC: 3·23; CI 2·53, 4·13; males: 3·37; 2·30, 4·92; females: 3·41; 2·39, 4·85). The risk of T2DM with BMI≥28·0 kg/m2, simple enlarged WC and simple disorders of lipid metabolism showed an increasing tendency (aOR=1·31, 1·75 and 2·32).
The prevalence of HTGW and T2DM has reached an alarming level among rural Chinese people, and HTGW is a significant risk factor for T2DM.
Previous studies in schizophrenia revealed abnormalities in the cortico-cerebellar-thalamo-cortical circuit (CCTCC) pathway, suggesting the necessity for defining thalamic subdivisions in understanding alterations of brain connectivity.
To parcellate the thalamus into several subdivisions using a data-driven method, and to evaluate the role of each subdivision in the alterations of CCTCC functional connectivity in patients with schizophrenia.
There were 54 patients with schizophrenia and 42 healthy controls included in this study. First, the thalamic structural and functional connections computed, based on diffusion magnetic resonance imaging (MRI, white matter tractography) and resting-state functional MRI, were clustered to parcellate thalamus. Next, functional connectivity of each thalamus subdivision was investigated, and the alterations in thalamic functional connectivity for patients with schizophrenia were inspected.
Based on the data-driven parcellation method, six thalamic subdivisions were defined. Loss of connectivity was observed between several thalamic subdivisions (superior-anterior, ventromedial and dorsolateral part of the thalamus) and the sensorimotor system, anterior cingulate cortex and cerebellum in patients with schizophrenia. A gradual pattern of dysconnectivity was observed across the thalamic subdivisions. Additionally, the altered connectivity negatively correlated with symptom scores and duration of illness in individuals with schizophrenia.
The findings of the study revealed a wide range of thalamic functional dysconnectivity in the CCTCC pathway, increasing our understanding of the relationship between the CCTCC pathway and symptoms associated with schizophrenia, and further indicating a potential alteration pattern in the thalamic nuclei in people with schizophrenia.
Mosquitoes are haematophagous vectors for hundreds of pathogenic viruses that are aetiological agents of human diseases. In nature, mosquito-borne viruses maintain a lifecycle between mosquitoes and vertebrate animals. Viruses are acquired by a naive mosquito from an infected host by blood meals and then propagate extensively in the mosquito's tissues. This mosquito then becomes a virus reservoir and is competent to transmit the viruses to a naive vertebrate host through the next blood meal. To survive in and efficiently cycle between two distinct host environments, mosquito-borne viruses have evolved delicate and smart strategies to comprehensively exploit host and vector factors. Here, we provide an update on recent studies of the mechanisms of virus survival in, acquisition and transmission by mosquitoes.
We report on a new scheme for efficient continuous-wave (CW) mid-infrared generation using difference frequency generation (DFG) inside a periodically poled lithium niobate (PPLN)-based optical parametric oscillator (OPO). The pump sources were two CW fiber lasers fixed at 1018 nm and 1080 nm. One worked as the assisted laser to build parametric oscillation and generate an oscillating signal beam while the other worked at low power (
) to induce DFG between it and the signal beam. The PPLN temperature was appropriately adjusted to enable OPO and DFG to synchronously meet phase-matching conditions. Finally, both low-power 1018 nm and 1080 nm pump beams were successfully converted to
idler beams, respectively. The conversion efficiencies of the 1018 nm and 1080 nm pumped DFG reached 20% and 15%, respectively, while their slope efficiencies reached 19.6% and 15%. All these data were comparable to the OPOs pumped by themselves and never realized before in traditional CW DFG schemes. The results reveal that high-efficiency frequency down-conversion can be achieved with a low-power near-infrared pump source.
A coaxial-output rolled strip pulse-forming line (RSPFL) with a dry structure is researched for the purpose of miniaturization and all-solid state of pulse-forming lines (PFL). The coaxial-output RSPFL consists of a coaxial-output electrode (COE) and a rolled strip line (RSL). The COE is characterized by quasi-coaxial structure, making the output pulse propagate along the axial direction with a small output inductance. The RSL is rolled on the COE, whose transmission characteristics are analyzed theoretically. It shows that the RSL can be regarded as a planar strip line when the rolling radius of the strip line is larger than 60 times of the thickness of the insulation dielectric layer of RSL. CST modeling was carried out to simulate the discharging characteristic of the coaxial-output RSPFL. It shows that the coaxial-output RSPFL can deliver a discharging pulse with a rise time <6 ns when the impedance of the RSL matches that of the COE, which confirms the theoretical analysis. A prototype of the coaxial-output RSPFL was developed. A 49-kV discharging pulse on a matched load was achieved when it was charged to 100 kV. The discharging waveform has a pulse width of 32 ns, with a rise time of 6 ns, which is consistent with the simulation waveform. An energy-storage density of 1.9 J/L was realized in the coaxial-output RSPFL. By the method of multi-stage connection in series, a much higher output voltage is convenient to be obtained.
A new band-reject frequency-selective surface (FSS) based on dual-band near-zero refractive index metamaterial (ZIM) design is presented in this paper. Consisting of a planar array of complementary dual-layer symmetry resonant ring, the proposed FSS exhibits a high-selective band-reject filtering response. From the viewpoint of effective medium, the subwavelength FSS is characterized by near-zero effective magnetic permeability and near-zero effective electric permittivity in two different operational bands, respectively. The corresponding resonant behavior and E-field distributions are analyzed in detail. A prototype of the proposed FSS working in X-band is fabricated and measured. The simulation and experiment results verify the effectiveness and correctness of the ZIM-based design method.
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.
To investigate the effect of Mn on antioxidant status and on the expressions of heat shock proteins/factors in tissues of laying broiler breeders subjected to heat challenge, we used a completely randomised design (n 6) with a factorial arrangement of 2 environmental temperatures (normal, 21±1°C, and high, 32±1°C)×3 dietary Mn treatments (a Mn-unsupplemented basal diet (CON), or a basal diet supplemented with 120 mg Mn/kg diet, either as inorganic Mn sulphate (iMn) or as organic Mn proteinate (oMn)). There were no interactions (P>0·10) between environmental temperature and dietary Mn in any of the measured indices. High temperature decreased (P<0·003) Mn content, and also tended (P=0·07) to decrease Cu Zn superoxide dismutase (CuZnSOD) activity in the liver and heart. However, an increased Mn superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) activity (P<0·05) and a slight increase in malondialdehyde level (P=0·06) were detected in breast muscle. Up-regulated (P<0·05) expressions of heat shock factor 1 (HSF1) and HSF3 mRNA and heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) mRNA and protein were found in all three tissues. Broiler breeders fed either iMn or oMn had higher tissue Mn content (P<0·0001), heart MnSOD and CuZnSOD activities (P<0·01) and breast muscle MnSOD protein levels (P<0·05), and lower (P<0·05) breast muscle HSP70 mRNA and protein levels compared with those fed CON. Broiler breeders fed oMn had higher (P<0·03) bone Mn content than those fed iMn. These results indicate that high temperature decreases Mn retention and increases HSP70, HSF1 and HSF3 expressions in the tissues of laying broiler breeders. Furthermore, dietary supplementation with Mn in either source may enhance the heart’s antioxidant ability and inhibit the expression of HSP70 in breast muscle. Finally, the organic Mn appears to be more available than inorganic Mn for bone in laying broiler breeders regardless of environmental temperatures.
This study investigates the contributions of semantic, phonological, and orthographic factors to morphological awareness of 413 Chinese-speaking students in Grades 2, 4, and 6, and its relationship with reading comprehension. Participants were orally presented with pairs of bimorphemic compounds and asked to judge whether the first morphemes of the words shared a meaning. Morpheme identity (same or different), whole-word semantic relatedness (high or low), orthography (same or different), and phonology (same or different) were manipulated. By Grade 6, children were able to focus on meaning similarities across morphemes while ignoring the distraction of form, but they remained influenced by whole-word semantic relatedness. Children's ability to overcome the distraction of phonology consistently improved with age, but did not reach ceiling, whereas the parallel ability for orthography reached ceiling at Grade 6. Morphological judgment performance was a significant unique predictor of reading comprehension when character naming and vocabulary knowledge were accounted for.
To investigate the effect of Mn on antioxidant status and expression levels of heat-shock proteins/factors in tissues of laying broiler breeders subjected to heat challenge, we used a completely randomised design (n 6) with a factorial arrangement of 2 environmental temperatures (normal, 21 (sem 1)°C and high, 32 (sem 1)°C)×3 dietary Mn treatments (an Mn-unsupplemented basal diet (CON), or a basal diet supplemented with 120 mg Mn/kg diet as inorganic Mn sulphate (iMn) or organic Mn proteinate (oMn)). There were no interactions (P>0·10) between environmental temperature and dietary Mn in all of the measured indices. High temperature decreased (P<0·003) Mn content, and also tended (P=0·07) to decrease copper zinc superoxide dismutase (CuZnSOD) activity in the liver and heart. However, an increased manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) activity (P<0·05) and a slight increase of malondialdehyde level (P=0·06) were detected in breast muscle. Up-regulated (P<0·05) expression levels of heat-shock factor 1 (HSF1) and HSF3 mRNA and heat-shock protein 70 (HSP70) mRNA and protein were found in all three tissues. Broiler breeders fed either iMn or oMn had higher tissue Mn content (P<0·0001), heart MnSOD and CuZnSOD activities (P<0·01) and breast muscle MnSOD protein levels (P<0·05), and lower (P<0·05) breast muscle HSP70 mRNA and protein levels than those fed CON. Broiler breeders fed oMn had higher (P<0·03) bone Mn content than those fed iMn. These results indicate that high temperature decreases Mn retention and increases HSP70 and HSF1, HSF3 expression levels in tissues of laying broiler breeders. Furthermore, dietary supplementation with Mn in either source may enhance heart antioxidant ability and inhibit the expression of HSP70 in breast muscle. Finally, the organic Mn appears to be more available than inorganic Mn for bone in laying broiler breeders regardless of environmental temperatures.
A new species of boreopterid pterosaur from the new fossil locality, Heichengzi, Beipiao, western Liaoning, China allows a reassessment of the Boreopteridae. In this new analysis, three species, Boreopterus cuiae, Boreopterus giganticus n. sp., and Zhenyuanopterus longirostris, are included within the Boreopteridae united by the autopomorphic occurrence of two main tooth morphologies, an equal length of the tibia and femur, and weak feet. Other taxa previously placed within the Boreopteridae are not in a monophyletic group with the former three species. Boreopterus has fewer teeth and a shorter tooth row than that in Zhenyuanopterus. This new Boreopterus species has a large size, a piriform orbit, an extensively fenestrated lacrimal, and a posteriorly directed lacrimal process, that differs from Boreopterus cuiae.
A method to design the composite insulation structures in pulsed power systems is proposed in this paper. The theoretical bases for this method include the Weibull statistical distribution and the empirical insulation formula. A uniform formula to describe the reliability (R) for different insulation media such as solid, liquid, gas, vacuum, and vacuum surface is derived. The dependence curves of the normalized applied field on R are also obtained. These curves show that the normalized applied field decreases rapidly as R increases but the declining rates corresponding to different insulation media are different. In addition, if R is required to be higher than a given level, the normalized applied field should be smaller than a certain value. In practical design, the common range of the applied fields for different insulation media should be chosen to meet a global reliability requirement. In the end, the proposed method is demonstrated with a specific coaxial high-voltage vacuum insulator.
Round spermatid injection (ROSI) into mammalian oocytes can result in the development of viable embryos and offspring. One current limitation to this technique is the identification of suitable round spermatids. In the current paper, round spermatids were selected from testicular cells with phase contrast microscopy (PCM) and fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS), and ROSI was performed in two strains of mice. The rates of fertilization, embryonic development and offspring achieved were the same in all strains. Significantly, round spermatids selected by PCM and FACS were effectively used to rescue the infertile Pten-null mouse. The current results indicate that FACS selection of round spermatids can not only provide high-purity and viable round spermatids for use in ROSI, but also has no harmful effects on the developmental capacity of subsequently fertilized embryos. It was concluded that round spermatids selected by FACS are useful for mouse strain rederivation and rescue of infertile males; ROSI should be considered as a powerful addition to the armamentarium of assisted reproduction techniques applicable in the mouse.
In this work, the relationship between the substrate crystallinity and the on-state resistances of silicon carbide (SiC) photoconductive semiconductor switches (PCSSs) was investigated. PCSSs with different channel lengths were fabricated on semi insulating 6H–SiC having different crystal qualities. A method was introduced for determining the photoconductive capacity of the SiC PCSSs. The experimental data suggest that the photoconductive capacity decreases sharply with the degradation of the full width at half maximum of the rocking curve of the 6H–SiC substrates. It is found that increasing the carrier mobility is a key factor for reducing the on-state resistance of the 6H–SiC PCSSs. Moreover, the results in this work present reference for the selection of 6H–SiC substrates for the fabrication of PCSSs and some other photoelectric devices.