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The horse played a crucial role in China through the first millennium BC, used both for military advantage and, through incorporation into elite burials, to express social status. Details of how horses were integrated into mortuary contexts during the Qin Empire, however, are poorly understood. Here, the authors present new zooarchaeological data for 24 horses from an accessory pit in Qin Shihuang's mausoleum, indicating that the horses chosen were tall, adult males. These findings provide insights into the selection criteria for animals to be included in the emperor's tomb and invite consideration of questions concerning horse breeds, husbandry practices, and the military and symbolic importance of horses in early imperial China.
To investigate the correlation between ventricular pre-excitation-related dyssynchrony, on cardiac dysfunction, and recovery.
Methods and Results:
This study included 76 children (39 boys and 37 girls) with a median age of 5.25 (2.67–10.75) years. The patients with pre-excitation-related cardiac dysfunction (cardiac dysfunction group, n = 34) had a longer standard deviation of the time-to-peak systolic strain of the left ventricle and larger difference between the maximum and minimum times-to-peak systolic strain than those with a normal cardiac function (normal function group, n = 42) (51.77 ± 24.70 ms versus 33.29 ± 9.48 ms, p < 0.05; 185.82 ± 92.51 ms versus 111.93 ± 34.27 ms, p < 0.05, respectively). The cardiac dysfunction group had a maximum time-to-peak systolic strain at the basal segments of the anterior and posterior septa and the normal function group at the basal segments of anterolateral and posterolateral walls. The prevalence of ventricular septal dyssynchrony in the cardiac dysfunction group was significantly higher than that in the normal function group (94.1% (32/34) versus 7.7% (3/42), p < 0.05). The patients with ventricular septal dyssynchrony (n = 35) had a significantly higher prevalence of intra-left ventricular systolic dyssynchrony than those with ventricular septal synchrony (n = 41) (57.1% (20/35) versus 14.6% (6/41), p < 0.05). During follow-up after pathway ablation, the patients who recovered from intra-left ventricular dyssynchrony (n = 29) had a shorter left ventricular ejection fraction recovery time than those who did not (n = 5) (χ2 = 5.94, p < 0.05). Among the patients who recovered, 93.1% (27/29) had a normalised standard deviation of the time-to-peak systolic strain and difference between the maximum and minimum times-to-peak systolic strain within 1 month after ablation.
Ventricular pre-excitation may cause ventricular septal dyssynchrony; thus, attention must be paid to intra-left ventricular dyssynchrony and cardiac dysfunction. Whether intra-left ventricular systolic dyssynchrony can resolve within 1 month may be a new early predictor of patient prognosis.
Due to the lack of research between the inner layers in the structure of colonic mucous and the metabolism of fatty acid in the constipation model, we aim to determine the changes in the mucous phenotype of the colonic glycocalyx and the microbial community structure following treatment with Rhubarb extract in our research. The constipation and treatment models are generated using adult male C57BL/6N mice. We perform light microscopy and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) to detect a Muc2-rich inner mucus layer attached to mice colon under different conditions. In addition, 16S rDNA sequencing is performed to examine the intestinal flora. According to TEM images, we demonstrate that Rhubarb can promote mucin secretion and find direct evidence of dendritic structure-linked mucus structures with its assembly into a lamellar network in a pore size distribution in the isolated colon section. Moreover, the diversity of intestinal flora has noticeable changes in constipated mice. The present study characterizes a dendritic structure and persistent cross-links have significant changes accompanied by the alteration of intestinal flora in feces in models of constipation and pretreatment with Rhubarb extract.
In the past 10–15 years, the government of China has made various efforts in tackling excessive antibiotics use. Yet, little is known about their effects at rural primary care settings. This study aimed to determine the impact of government policies and the COVID-19 pandemic on antibiotic prescribing practices at such settings utilizing data from separate studies carried out pre- and during the pandemic, in 2016 and 2021 in Anhui province, China, using identical sampling and survey approaches. Data on antibiotics prescribed, diagnosis, socio-demographic, etc., were obtained through non-participative observation and a structured exit survey. Data analysis comprised mainly descriptive comparisons of 1153 and 762 patients with respiratory infections recruited in 2016 and 2021, respectively. The overall antibiotics prescription rate decreased from 89.6% in 2016 to 69.1% in 2021, and the proportion of prescriptions for two or more classes of antibiotics was estimated as 35.9% in 2016 and 11.0% in 2021. There was a statistically significant decrease in the number of days from symptom onset to clinic visits between the year groups. In conclusion, measures to constrain excessive prescription of antibiotics have led to some improvements at the rural primary care level, and the COVID-19 pandemic has had varying effects on antibiotic use.
Nicotine 2,6-dihydroxybenzoate is a nicotine salt that can be used as the nicotine source in tobacco products. X-ray powder diffraction data, unit-cell parameters, and space group for nicotine 2,6-dihydroxybenzoate, C10H15N2⋅C7H5O4, are reported [a = 7.726(8) Å, b = 11.724(3) Å, c = 9.437(1) Å, α = 90°, β = 109.081(3)°, γ = 90°, unit-cell volume V = 802.902 Å3, Z = 2, ρcal = 1.309 g cm−3, and space group P21] at room temperature. All measured lines were indexed and were consistent with the P21 space group.
Subthreshold depression (sD) negatively impacts well-being and psychosocial function and is more prevalent compared with major depressive disorder (MDD). However, as adults with sD are less likely to seek face-to-face intervention, internet-based cognitive-behavioral therapy (ICBT) may overcome barriers of accessibility to psychotherapy. Although several trials explored the efficacy of ICBT for sD, the results remain inconsistent. This study evaluated whether ICBT is effective in reducing depressive symptoms among Chinese adults with sD.
A randomized controlled trial was performed. The participants were randomly assigned to 5 weeks of ICBT, group-based face-to-face cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), or a waiting list (WL). Assessments were conducted at baseline, post-intervention and at a 6-month follow-up. The primary outcome measured depressive symptoms using the Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale (CES-D). Outcomes were analyzed using a mixed-effects model to assess the effects of ICBT.
ICBT participants reported greater reductions on all the outcomes compared to the WL group at post-intervention. The ICBT group showed larger improvement on the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) at post-intervention (d = 0.12) and at follow-up (d = 0.10), and with CES-D at post-intervention (d = 0.06), compared to the CBT group.
ICBT is effective in reducing depressive symptoms among Chinese adults with sD, and improvements in outcomes were sustained at a 6-month follow-up. Considering the low rates of face-to-face psychotherapy, our findings highlight the considerable potential and implications for the Chinese government to promote the use of ICBT for sD in China.
Using the KIDScoreTM D3 (KID3) scoring system, day 3 embryos observed by time-lapse imaging (TLI) were scored to explore the predictive value of the KID scoring system on the developmental potential of embryos. The kinetic parameters of 477 normal fertilized embryos from 77 patients who underwent TLI in our hospital from January 2019 to June 2020 were evaluated by KID3, and the embryos were divided into five groups according to the scores for retrospective analysis of blastocyst formation. Additionally, the high-quality blastocyst formation rate, pregnancy rate and early abortion rate were analyzed via KID3 and traditional morphological assessments, and comparisons of differences among different ages were also performed. In the KID3 estimate, the blastocyst or high-quality blastocyst formation rate in the score 5 group was markedly higher than that in the score 1–4 groups. Blastocyst or high-quality blastocyst formation rates in the A group (the results of two evaluation tools indicated they were excellent embryos) and the B group (KID3: excellent embryos, traditional evaluation: not excellent embryos) were evidently increased in comparison with the C or D group (KID3: not excellent embryos, traditional evaluation: excellent embryo or not, respectively). Furthermore, the percentages of score 5 embryos, blastocyst and high-quality blastocyst formation rates for patients ≥ 35 years old were markedly decreased compared with those for patients < 34 years old, while the trends of nondiploid cleavage, multinucleation and asymmetric division were the opposite. Collectively, the KID3 scoring system may be a promising predictive tool for screening embryos with better developmental potential.
Previous analyses of grey and white matter volumes have reported that schizophrenia is associated with structural changes. Deep learning is a data-driven approach that can capture highly compact hierarchical non-linear relationships among high-dimensional features, and therefore can facilitate the development of clinical tools for making a more accurate and earlier diagnosis of schizophrenia.
To identify consistent grey matter abnormalities in patients with schizophrenia, 662 people with schizophrenia and 613 healthy controls were recruited from eight centres across China, and the data from these independent sites were used to validate deep-learning classifiers.
We used a prospective image-based meta-analysis of whole-brain voxel-based morphometry. We also automatically differentiated patients with schizophrenia from healthy controls using combined grey matter, white matter and cerebrospinal fluid volumetric features, incorporated a deep neural network approach on an individual basis, and tested the generalisability of the classification models using independent validation sites.
We found that statistically reliable schizophrenia-related grey matter abnormalities primarily occurred in regions that included the superior temporal gyrus extending to the temporal pole, insular cortex, orbital and middle frontal cortices, middle cingulum and thalamus. Evaluated using leave-one-site-out cross-validation, the performance of the classification of schizophrenia achieved by our findings from eight independent research sites were: accuracy, 77.19–85.74%; sensitivity, 75.31–89.29% and area under the receiver operating characteristic curve, 0.797–0.909.
These results suggest that, by using deep-learning techniques, multidimensional neuroanatomical changes in schizophrenia are capable of robustly discriminating patients with schizophrenia from healthy controls, findings which could facilitate clinical diagnosis and treatment in schizophrenia.
The significance of spiritual care competence among nurses has been emphasized across countries and cultures in many studies. However, there were few studies on correlations among spiritual care competence, spiritual care perceptions, and spiritual health of nurses in China.
To investigate spiritual care competence, spiritual care perceptions, and spiritual health, and examine the correlations among spiritual care competence, spiritual care perceptions and spiritual health, and the mediating role of spiritual health between other two variables of Chinese nurses.
A cross-sectional and correlational design was implemented, and the STROBE Checklist was used to report the study. A convenience sample of 2,181 nurses were selected from 17 hospitals in 3 provinces, China. Participants provided data on sociodemographic by completing the Chinese Version of the Spiritual Care Competence Scale, the Chinese Version of the Spiritual Care-Giving Scale, and the Spiritual Health Scale Short Form. Descriptive statistics, univariate, multiple linear regression, and Pearson correlation analysis were used to analyze data.
The total scores of spiritual care competence, spiritual care perceptions, and spiritual health were 58.25 ± 16.21, 144.49 ± 16.87, and 84.88 ± 10.57, respectively, which both were moderate. Spiritual care competence was positively correlated with spiritual care perceptions (r = 0.653, p < 0.01) and spiritual health (r = 0.587, p < 0.01). And spiritual health played a mediating role between the other two variables (accounting for 35.6%).
Significance of results
The spiritual care competence, spiritual care perceptions, and spiritual health of Chinese nurses need to be improved. It is recommended that nursing managers should pay attention to spiritual care education of nurses, and improve spiritual care perceptions and spiritual health in multiple ways, so as to improve their spiritual care competence and to maximize the satisfy spiritual care needs of patients in China.
Gut microbiome and dietary patterns have been suggested to be associated with depression/anxiety. However, limited effort has been made to explore the effects of possible interactions between diet and microbiome on the risks of depression and anxiety.
Using the latest genome-wide association studies findings in gut microbiome and dietary habits, polygenic risk scores (PRSs) analysis of gut microbiome and dietary habits was conducted in the UK Biobank cohort. Logistic/linear regression models were applied for evaluating the associations for gut microbiome-PRS, dietary habits-PRS, and their interactions with depression/anxiety status and Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9)/Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7 (GAD-7) score by R software.
We observed 51 common diet–gut microbiome interactions shared by both PHQ score and depression status, such as overall beef intake × genus Sporobacter [hurdle binary (HB)] (PPHQ = 7.88 × 10−4, Pdepression status = 5.86 × 10−4); carbohydrate × genus Lactococcus (HB) (PPHQ = 0.0295, Pdepression status = 0.0150). We detected 41 common diet–gut microbiome interactions shared by GAD score and anxiety status, such as sugar × genus Parasutterella (rank normal transformed) (PGAD = 5.15 × 10−3, Panxiety status = 0.0347); tablespoons of raw vegetables per day × family Coriobacteriaceae (HB) (PGAD = 6.02 × 10−4, Panxiety status = 0.0345). Some common significant interactions shared by depression and anxiety were identified, such as overall beef intake × genus Sporobacter (HB).
Our study results expanded our understanding of how to comprehensively consider the relationships for dietary habits–gut microbiome interactions with depression and anxiety.
To compare the prevalence of overweight or obesity (ow/ob) with WHO BMI cut-off points, International Obesity Task Force (IOTF) cut-off points and Chinese BMI criteria and examine its potential factors among preschool children in Hunan Province.
A cross-sectional survey including anthropometric measurements and questionnaires about children’s information, caregivers’ socio-demographic characteristics and maternal characteristics. χ2 tests and univariate and multivariate binary logistic regression were performed to evaluate the possible factors of ow/ob.
Hunan, China, from September to October 2019.
In total, 7664 children 2 to 6 years of age.
According to Chinese BMI criteria, about 1 in 7–8 children aged 2–6 years had ow/ob in Hunan, China. The overall estimated prevalence of ow/ob among 2- to 6-year-old children was significantly higher when based on the Chinese BMI criteria compared with the WHO BMI cut-off points and IOTF cut-off points. According to Chinese BMI criteria, ow/ob was associated with residing in urban areas, older age, male sex, eating snacking food more frequently, macrosomia delivery, caesarean birth, heavier maternal prepregnancy weight and pre-delivery weight.
The prevalence of ow/ob in preschool children in Hunan Province remains high. More ow/ob children could be screened out according to Chinese BMI cut-offs compared with WHO and IOTF BMI criteria. In the future, targeted intervention studies with matched controls will be needed to assess the long-term effects of intervention measures to provide more information for childhood obesity prevention and treatment.
Previous studies have suggested that maternal active smoking can increase the risk of birth defects, but evidence on second-hand tobacco smoke (SHS) is limited. We aimed to assess the association between maternal exposure to SHS and birth defects in a Chinese population. The data were based on a large-scale cross-sectional survey conducted in Shaanxi Province, China. Considering the characteristics of survey design and the potential impact of confounding factors, we adopted propensity score matching (PSM) to match the SHS exposure group and the non-exposure group to attain a balance of the confounders between the two groups. Subsequently, conditional logistic regression was employed to estimate the effect of SHS exposure on birth defects. Furthermore, sensitivity analyses were conducted to verify the key findings. After nearest neighbor matching of PSM with a ratio of 2 and a caliper width of 0.03, there were 6,205 and 12,410 participants in the exposure and control group, respectively. Pregnant women exposed to SHS were estimated to be 58% more likely to have infants with overall birth defects (OR = 1.58, 95% CI: 1.30–1.91) and 75% more likely to have infants with circulatory system defects (OR = 1.75, 95% CI: 1.26–2.44). We also observed that the risk effect of overall birth defects had an increasing trend as the frequency of exposure increased. Additionally, sensitivity analyses suggested that our results had good robustness. These results indicate that maternal exposure to SHS likely increases the risk of overall birth defects, especially circulatory system defects, in Chinese offspring.
This retrospective study investigated the predictive value of the Controlling Nutritional Status (CONUT) score in patients with intermediate-stage hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) who received transarterial chemoembolization (TACE). Nomograms were developed to predict progression-free and overall survival (PFS, OS). The medical data of 228 patients with HCC and treated with TACE were collected. The patients were apportioned to 2 groups according to CONUT score: low or high (<4, ≥4). Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed using Cox regression for OS and PFS. OS and PFS were estimated by the Kaplan-Meier curve and compared with the log-rank test. Nomograms were constructed to predict patient OS and PFS. The nomograms were evaluated for accuracy, discrimination, and efficiency. The cut-off value of CONUT score was 4. The higher the CONUT score, the worse the survival; Kaplan-Meier curves showed significant differences in OS and PFS between the low and high CONUT score groups (P = 0·033, 0·047). The nomograms including CONUT, based on the prognostic factors determined by the univariate and multivariate analyses, to predict survival in HCC after TACE were generated. The CONUT score is an important prognostic factor for both OS and PFS for patients with intermediate HCC who underwent TACE. The cut-off value of the CONUT score was 4. A high CONUT score suggests poor survival outcomes. Nomograms generated based on the CONUT score were good models to predict patient OS and PFS.
The gas hydrate stability zone (GHSZ) is the essential condition for gas hydrate accumulation, which is controlled by three main factors: gas component, geothermal gradient and permafrost thickness. Based on the gas component of hydrate samples from drilling in Muri coalfield, the gas hydrate phase equilibrium curve was calculated using Sloan's natural gas hydrate phase equilibrium procedure (CSMHYD) program. Through temperature data processing of coalfield boreholes, some important data such as thickness of permafrost and geothermal gradient were obtained. The GHSZ parameters of a single borehole were calculated by programming based on the above basic data. The average thickness of GHSZ of 85 boreholes in Muri coalfield amounted to approximately 1000 m, indicating very broad space for gas hydrate occurrence. The isogram of GHSZ bottom depth drawn from single borehole data in Muri coalfield demonstrated the regional distribution characteristics of GHSZ, and identified three favourable areas of gas hydrate occurrence where the bottom of GHSZ had a burial depth >1500 m – namely, the southern part of Juhugeng Mining Area, the middle part of Duosuogongma Mining Area and the eastern part of Xuehuoli Mining Area.
Schistosomiasis has been subjected to extensive control efforts in the People's Republic of China (China) which aims to eliminate the disease by 2030. We describe baseline results of a longitudinal cohort study undertaken in the Dongting and Poyang lakes areas of central China designed to determine the prevalence of Schistosoma japonicum in humans, animals (goats and bovines) and Oncomelania snails utilizing molecular diagnostics procedures. Data from the Chinese National Schistosomiasis Control Programme (CNSCP) were compared with the molecular results obtained.
Sixteen villages from Hunan and Jiangxi provinces were surveyed; animals were only found in Hunan. The prevalence of schistosomiasis in humans was 1.8% in Jiangxi and 8.0% in Hunan determined by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR), while 18.3% of animals were positive by digital droplet PCR. The CNSCP data indicated that all villages harboured S. japonicum-infected individuals, detected serologically by indirect haemagglutination assay (IHA), but very few, if any, of these were subsequently positive by Kato-Katz (KK).
Based on the outcome of the IHA and KK results, the CNSCP incorporates targeted human praziquantel chemotherapy but this approach can miss some infections as evidenced by the results reported here. Sensitive molecular diagnostics can play a key role in the elimination of schistosomiasis in China and inform control measures allowing for a more systematic approach to treatment.
South-east Asia's diverse coastal wetlands, which span natural mudflats and mangroves to man-made salt pans, offer critical habitat for many migratory waterbird species in the East Asian–Australasian Flyway. Species dependent on these wetlands include nearly the entire population of the Critically Endangered spoon-billed sandpiper Calidris pygmaea and the Endangered spotted greenshank Tringa guttifer, and significant populations of several other globally threatened and declining species. Presently, more than 50 coastal Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs) in the region (7.4% of all South-east Asian IBAs) support at least one threatened migratory species. However, recent studies continue to reveal major knowledge gaps on the distribution of migratory waterbirds and important wetland sites along South-east Asia's vast coastline, including undiscovered and potential IBAs. Alongside this, there are critical gaps in the representation of coastal wetlands across the protected area networks of many countries in this region (e.g. Viet Nam, Indonesia, Malaysia), hindering effective conservation. Although a better understanding of the value of coastal wetlands to people and their importance to migratory species is necessary, governments and other stakeholders need to do more to strengthen the conservation of these ecosystems by improving protected area coverage, habitat restoration, and coastal governance and management. This must be underpinned by the judicious use of evidence-based approaches, including satellite-tracking of migratory birds, ecological research and ground surveys.
Honeybees cannot synthesize arachidonic acid (ARA) themselves, only obtain it from food. Most pollen is deficient or contains a small amount of ARA. The necessity of supplementary ARA in bees’ diet has not been studied. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of dietary ARA levels on the growth and immunity of Apis mellifera ligustica. A total of 25 honeybee colonies were randomly assigned to five dietary groups which were fed basic diets supplemented with 0, 2, 4, 6, and 8% of ARA. The diet with 4% ARA improved the body weight of newly emerged worker bees compared with the control group. Supplement of ARA in honeybee diets changed the fatty acid composition of honeybee body. SFA and MUFA contents of bees’ body declined, and PUFA content rised in the ARA group. Compared with the control group, the supplement of ARA in honeybee diets increased the contents of ARA, C22:6n-3 (DHA) and C18:3n-6 in bees’ body significantly, but decreased the contents of C16:1 and C18:3n-3. The diet supplied with 4% ARA reduced the mortality rate of honeybee infected with Escherichia coli. The activity of immune enzymes (phenoloxidase, antitrypsin, and lysozyme) and the mRNA expression levels of immune genes (defensin-2, toll, myd88, and dorsal) were improved by ARA diets to varying degrees depending on the ARA levels, especially 4% ARA. These results suggested that dietary ARA could improve the growth, survival, and immune functions of honeybees. Supplement of ARA in bees’ diet would be valuable for the fitness of honeybees.
Since the discovery of ABO blood types, there has been mounting evidence of the association between blood types and infectious diseases. However, so far, there is rarely available research about the potential role of ABO blood types in haemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS) infection. Our aim was to investigate the relationship between ABO blood types and the development of HFRS infection in Qingdao, China. We carried out a retrospective study enrolling 116 HFRS patients as the case group and 373 healthy subjects as the control group. ABO blood type distribution was analysed using the Chi-square test and logistic regression analysis. Results showed that the distribution of ABO blood types between the two groups was significantly different (X2 = 18.151, P < 0.05). Blood type B was less frequently observed [odds ratio (OR), 0.404; confidence interval (CI), 0.238–0.684; P < 0.01], while blood type AB was more frequently observed in the case group (OR, 2.548; CI, 1.427–4.549; P < 0.01). Since significantly more males were affected than females, we further analysed the data by gender as well as blood types and obtained consistent results for males. Our findings indicated that populations with blood type AB might be more prone to HFRS infection, whereas those with blood type B might be less susceptible to HFRS infection, which will help to make risk stratification in infection control.