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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.
The present study evaluated whether fat mass assessment using the triceps skinfold (TSF) thickness provides additional prognostic value to the Global Leadership Initiative on Malnutrition (GLIM) framework in patients with lung cancer (LC). We performed an observational cohort study including 2672 LC patients in China. Comprehensive demographic, disease and nutritional characteristics were collected. Malnutrition was retrospectively defined using the GLIM criteria, and optimal stratification was used to determine the best thresholds for the TSF. The associations of malnutrition and TSF categories with survival were estimated independently and jointly by calculating multivariable-adjusted hazard ratios (HR). Malnutrition was identified in 808 (30·2 %) patients, and the best TSF thresholds were 9·5 mm in men and 12 mm in women. Accordingly, 496 (18·6 %) patients were identified as having a low TSF. Patients with concurrent malnutrition and a low TSF had a 54 % (HR = 1·54, 95 % CI = 1·25, 1·88) greater death hazard compared with well-nourished individuals, which was also greater compared with malnourished patients with a normal TSF (HR = 1·23, 95 % CI = 1·06, 1·43) or malnourished patients without TSF assessment (HR = 1·31, 95 % CI = 1·14, 1·50). These associations were concentrated among those patients with adequate muscle mass (as indicated by the calf circumference). Additional fat mass assessment using the TSF enhances the prognostic value of the GLIM criteria. Using the population-derived thresholds for the TSF may provide significant prognostic value when used in combination with the GLIM criteria to guide strategies to optimise the long-term outcomes in patients with LC.
Advanced telecommunication systems are moving toward a high data transfer rate and wider bandwidth. The 5G communication network has recently been implemented for such aims. However, 5G networks operating with high operating frequency (typically above 20 GHz) could lead to impairments because of the atmospheric phenomena mainly precipitation and especially heavy rain. To address this, an optimum rain fade margin for the 5G network in Peninsular Malaysia is proposed using 77 sites of the rain-gauge network, which convert 1-h rain data to 1-min rain data by means of the international telecommunication union recommendation (ITU-R) P.837-7 model. Long-term rain attenuation statistics are obtained from ITU-R P.530-17 and the synthetic storm technique. The predicted rain attenuation is also presented in monthly statistics and in rain attenuation contour maps. The analysis showed that at 99.99% of link availability, the optimum rain fade margin operating at 26 GHz link should be in the range of 6.50 to 10 dB and 7 to 11 dB at 28 GHz link for a 5G network. Such information is useful for network operators and system engineers for the operation of 5G terrestrial microwave links in heavy rain regions.
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic is a major threat to the public. However, the comprehensive profile of suicidal ideation among the general population has not been systematically investigated in a large sample in the age of COVID-19.
A national online cross-sectional survey was conducted between February 28, 2020 and March 11, 2020 in a representative sample of Chinese adults aged 18 years and older. Suicidal ideation was assessed using item 9 of the Patient Health Questionnaire-9. The prevalence of suicidal ideation and its risk factors was evaluated.
A total of 56,679 participants (27,149 males and 29,530 females) were included. The overall prevalence of suicidal ideation was 16.4%, including 10.9% seldom, 4.1% often, and 1.4% always suicidal ideation. The prevalence of suicidal ideation was higher in males (19.1%) and individuals aged 18–24 years (24.7%) than in females (14.0%) and those aged 45 years and older (11.9%). Suicidal ideation was more prevalent in individuals with suspected or confirmed infection (63.0%), frontline workers (19.2%), and people with pre-existing mental disorders (41.6%). Experience of quarantine, unemployed, and increased psychological stress during the pandemic were associated with an increased risk of suicidal ideation and its severity. However, paying more attention to and gaining a better understanding of COVID-19-related knowledge, especially information about psychological interventions, could reduce the risk.
The estimated prevalence of suicidal ideation among the general population in China during COVID-19 was significant. The findings will be important for improving suicide prevention strategies during COVID-19.
Somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) holds vast potential in agriculture. However, its applications are still limited by its low efficiency. Histone 3 lysine 9 trimethylation (H3K9me3) was identified as an epigenetic barrier for this. Histone demethylase KDM4D could regulate the level of H3K9me3. However, its effects on buffalo SCNT embryos are still unclear. Thus, we performed this study to explore the effects and underlying mechanism of KDM4D on buffalo SCNT embryos. The results revealed that compared with the IVF embryos, the expression level of KDM4D in SCNT embryos was significantly lower at 8- and 16-cell stage, while the level of H3K9me3 in SCNT embryos was significantly higher at 2-cell, 8-cell, and blastocyst stage. Microinjection of KDM4D mRNA could promote the developmental ability of buffalo SCNT embryos. Furthermore, the expression level of ZGA-related genes such as ZSCAN5B, SNAI1, eIF-3a, and TRC at the 8-cell stage was significantly increased. Meanwhile, the pluripotency-related genes like POU5F1, SOX2, and NANOG were also significantly promoted at the blastocyst stage. The results were reversed after KDM4D was inhibited. Altogether, these results revealed that KDM4D could correct the H3K9me3 level, increase the expression level of ZGA and pluripotency-related genes, and finally, promote the developmental competence of buffalo SCNT embryos.
The upsurge in the number of people affected by the COVID-19 is likely to lead to increased rates of emotional trauma and mental illnesses. This article systematically reviewed the available data on the benefits of interventions to reduce adverse mental health sequelae of infectious disease outbreaks, and to offer guidance for mental health service responses to infectious disease pandemic. PubMed, Web of Science, Embase, PsycINFO, WHO Global Research Database on infectious disease, and the preprint server medRxiv were searched. Of 4278 reports identified, 32 were included in this review. Most articles of psychological interventions were implemented to address the impact of COVID-19 pandemic, followed by Ebola, SARS, and MERS for multiple vulnerable populations. Increasing mental health literacy of the public is vital to prevent the mental health crisis under the COVID-19 pandemic. Group-based cognitive behavioral therapy, psychological first aid, community-based psychosocial arts program, and other culturally adapted interventions were reported as being effective against the mental health impacts of COVID-19, Ebola, and SARS. Culturally-adapted, cost-effective, and accessible strategies integrated into the public health emergency response and established medical systems at the local and national levels are likely to be an effective option to enhance mental health response capacity for the current and for future infectious disease outbreaks. Tele-mental healthcare services were key central components of stepped care for both infectious disease outbreak management and routine support; however, the usefulness and limitations of remote health delivery should also be recognized.
Disasters such as an earthquake, a flood, and an epidemic usually lead to large numbers of casualties accompanied by disruption of the functioning of local medical institutions. A rapid response of medical assistance and support is required. Mobile hospitals have been deployed by national and international organizations at disaster situations in the past decades, which play an important role in saving casualties and alleviating the shortage of medical resources. In this paper, we briefly introduce the types and characteristics of mobile hospitals used by medical teams in disaster rescue, including the aspects of structural form, organizational form, and mobile transportation. We also review the practices of mobile hospitals in disaster response and summarize the problems and needs of mobile hospitals in disaster rescue. Finally, we propose the development direction of mobile hospitals, especially on the development of intelligence, rapid deployment capabilities, and modularization, which provide suggestions for further research and development of mobile hospitals in the future.
The association between milk consumption and the metabolic syndrome remains inconclusive, and data from Chinese populations are scarce. We conducted a cross-sectional study to investigate the association between milk consumption and the metabolic syndrome and its components among the residents of Suzhou Industrial Park, Suzhou, China. A total of 5149 participants were included in the final analysis. A logistic regression model was applied to estimate the OR and 95 % CI for the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome and its components according to milk consumption. In addition, the results of our study were further meta-analysed with other published observational studies to quantify the association between the highest v. lowest categories of milk consumption and the metabolic syndrome and its components. There was no significant difference in the odds of having the metabolic syndrome between milk consumers and non-milk consumers (OR 0·86, 95 % CI 0·73, 1·01). However, milk consumers had lower odds of having elevated waist circumference (OR 0·78, 95 % CI 0·67, 0·92), elevated TAG (OR 0·83, 95 % CI 0·70, 0·99) and elevated blood pressure (OR 0·85, 95 % CI 0·73, 0·99). When the results were pooled together with other published studies, higher milk consumption was inversely associated with the risk of the metabolic syndrome (relative risk 0·80, 95 % CI 0·72, 0·88) and its components (except elevated fasting blood glucose); however, these results should be treated with caution as high heterogeneity was observed. In summary, the currently available evidence from observational studies suggests that higher milk consumption may be inversely associated with the metabolic syndrome.
There is a genuine need to shorten the development period for new materials with desired properties. In this work, machine learning (ML) was conducted on a dataset of the elastic moduli of 219 bulk-metallic glasses (BMGs) and another dataset of the critical casting diameters (Dmax) of 442 BMGs. The resulting ML model predicted the moduli and Dmax of BMGs in good agreement with most experimentally measured values, and the model even identified some errors reported in the literature. This work indicates the great potential of ML in design of advanced materials with target properties.
Living Caprini are dominant bovids in the pan-Tibetan area that are strongly adapted to dry steppe and high-mountain meadow habitats. Some taxa with Holarctic distributions, e.g., Ovis Linnaeus, 1758, were thought to originate on the Tibetan Plateau and subsequently dispersed elsewhere, which was depicted as an ‘out of Tibet’ story. However, except for some information on a stem caprine assemblage from the Qaidam Basin, the early evolution of Caprini around the Tibetan Plateau is poorly known. Here, we report new material of Olonbulukia tsaidamensis Bohlin, 1937, which was a member of this stem caprine assemblage, from the Wuzhong region, northern China, confirming the similarity of the Wuzhong Fauna and ‘Qaidam Fauna.’ Based on a biometric study of horncores from the ‘Qaidam’ and Wuzhong faunas, we recognize six taxa from this stem caprine assemblage: O. tsaidamensis, O. sp., Qurliqnoria cheni Bohlin, 1937, Tossunnoria pseudibex Bohlin, 1937, ?Protoryx cf. P. enanus Köhler, 1987, and cf. Pachytragus sp. Among these taxa, Q. cheni and T. pseudibex are probably related to some extant Tibetan endemic species, e.g., the Tibetan antelope, Pantholops hodgsonii (Abel, 1826), and the Himalayan tahr, Hemitragus jemlahicus (Smith, 1826). Others might be ancestral to the Turolian caprine assemblages and even possibly gave rise to the extant Caprina. This work reveals an early radiation of stem caprines along the northern side of the rising Tibetan Plateau and indicates a mixed pattern of pan-Tibetan stem caprine evolution prior to their dispersal out of the Tibetan Plateau.
The assessment and calibration of representational bias in modern soil phytolith assemblages provide the basis for improving interpretation of fossil phytolith assemblages. We studied soil phytolith representation by comparing phytoliths from living plant communities with those from paired surface soils, representing 39 plant communities in Northeast China. Together with the use of representation indices, the 34 and 30 soil morphotypes observed in forest and grassland samples, respectively, were both classified into the following four groups: “Associated types” were similarly represented in soils and in the corresponding species inventory data; “Over-represented types” and “Under-represented types” were respectively over- and under-represented in soils compared to the inventory data; and, in the case of “Special types,” the relationship with the parent plants was unclear. In addition, the diagnostic types exhibited different degrees of representation, while the most common morphotypes were equally represented between grassland samples and forest samples. On this basis, a comparison between the original and corrected soil phytolith indices of the additional 29 soil samples was conducted. The soil phytoliths frequencies corrected by R-values differed between plots with differing plant compositions, and were moderately consistent with actual plant richness in the plot inventory data. We therefore confirmed that R-values are a promising means of correcting soil phytoliths for representational bias in temperate regions. The corrected soil phytoliths can be used to reliably reflect vegetation variability. Overall, our study provides an improved understanding of soil phytolith representation and offers a potential method for improving the accuracy of paleovegetation reconstruction.
We study a special class of quasi-cyclic codes, obtained from a cyclic code over an extension field of the alphabet field by taking its image on a basis. When the basis is equal to its dual, the dual code admits the same construction. We give some examples of self-dual codes and LCD codes obtained in this way.
We propose a general framework of computing interfacial structures between two modulated phases. Specifically we propose to use a computational box consisting of two half spaces, each occupied by a modulated phase with given position and orientation. The boundary conditions and basis functions are chosen to be commensurate with the bulk phases. We observe that the ordered nature of modulated structures stabilizes the interface, which enables us to obtain optimal interfacial structures by searching local minima of the free energy landscape. The framework is applied to the Landau-Brazovskii model to investigate interfaces between modulated phases with different relative positions and orientations. Several types of novel complex interfacial structures emerge from the calculations.
In this paper, the recent studies of laboratory astrophysics with strong magnetic fields in China have been reviewed. On the Shenguang-II laser facility of the National Laboratory on High-Power Lasers and Physics, a laser-driven strong magnetic field up to 200 T has been achieved. The experiment was performed to model the interaction of solar wind with dayside magnetosphere. Also the low beta plasma magnetic reconnection (MR) has been studied. Theoretically, the model has been developed to deal with the atomic structures and processes in strong magnetic field. Also the study of shock wave generation in the magnetized counter-streaming plasmas is introduced.
A defect in the intestinal barrier is one of the characteristics of Crohn's disease (CD). The tight junction (TJ) changes and death of epithelial cells caused by intestinal inflammation play an important role in the development of CD. DHA, a long-chain PUFA, has been shown to be helpful in treating inflammatory bowel disease in experimental models by inhibiting the NF-κB pathway. The present study aimed at investigating the specific effect of DHA on the intestinal barrier function in IL-10-deficient mice. IL-10-deficient mice (IL-10− / −) at 16 weeks of age with established colitis were treated with DHA (i.g. 35·5 mg/kg per d) for 2 weeks. The severity of their colitis, levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines, epithelial gene expression, the distributions of TJ proteins (occludin and zona occludens (ZO)-1), and epithelial apoptosis in the proximal colon were measured at the end of the experiment. DHA treatment attenuated the established colitis and was associated with reduced infiltration of inflammatory cells in the colonic mucosa, lower mean histological scores and decreased levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL-17, TNF-α and interferon-γ). Moreover, enhanced barrier function was observed in the DHA-treated mice that resulted from attenuated colonic permeability, rescued expression and corrected distributions of occludin and ZO-1. The results of the present study indicate that DHA therapy may ameliorate experimental colitis in IL-10− / − mice by improving the intestinal epithelial barrier function.
The towering earthen mound standing at the center of the First Emperor of Qin, Qin Shihuangdi's (259–210 b.c.e.) Lishan necropolis at present-day Lintong in Xi'an, Shaanxi province was arguably the single greatest burial marker in ancient China. For centuries, this gigantic unopened monument has sparked curiosity and aroused interest among people regarding its nature. Without physically damaging the target, in 2001–2003 Chinese archaeologists used a new geophysical remote sensor to scan the surface of the mound, digitally probed into its inner structure, and detected a nine-stepped wall that bounds an aboveground burial shaft stretching down deep into the ground. This novel structure begs the following questions: what are the basic elements of this tomb mound, how do they work together within a coherent plan, and why was it made?
Based on previous scholarship, this article conducts a more thorough analysis of the tomb mound and compares it with the excavated Eastern Zhou royal tombs of the Qin, Wei, Zhao, Qi, Chu, Han, Yan, and Zhongshan states. The results demonstrate that rather than following a single model of a single state, the Lishan tomb mound incorporated almost all the major features of its Eastern Zhou predecessors, including but not limited to the external tumulus, the internal stepped wall or terrace, simulated galleries, and the freestanding ritual halls. This article argues that by creatively incorporating all the provincial ingredients into one imperial unity, the complex tomb mound unified multiple funerary practices of China. What's more, the tomb mound, most likely constructed after Qin's political unification of China in 221 b.c.e., perfectly embodies the new notion of empire and the political ambition of the First Emperor who strove throughout his life for becoming the “first” in Chinese history by merging all the past traditions.
Previous studies have shown that bovine lactoferrin (bLF) exerts antibacterial, immune-modulating and anti-inflammatory effects. The present study aimed to investigate the effect of enteral bLF supplementation on intestinal adaptation and barrier function in a rat model of short bowel syndrome (SBS). Male Sprague–Dawley rats aged 4 weeks were randomised into three groups (n 10 per group): Sham group (rats submitted to bowel transection and reanastomosis); SBS group (rats submitted to 80 % small-bowel resection); SBS-bLF group (rats submitted to 80 % small-bowel resection plus treatment with bLF (0·5 g/kg per d) by oral administration from day 2 to day 20). Despite similar food intake, both the SBS and SBS-bLF groups exhibited significantly lower body weight gain, but increased villus height and crypt depth and a higher intestinal epithelial cell proliferation index (P< 0·05) when compared with the Sham group. Compared with that in the SBS group, in the SBS-bLF group, bacterial translocation to regional organs was low and intestinal permeability was significantly reduced. The SBS-bLF group also had increased secretory IgA (sIgA) concentrations in ileal contents (29·9 (23·8–33·0) ng/ml), when compared with the other two groups having similar sIgA concentrations (17·5 (12·6–29·1) and 19·3 (11·5–27·0) ng/ml, respectively). The relative expression levels of two tight junction (TJ) proteins, occludin and claudin-4, in the SBS-bLF group were significantly higher than those in the SBS group (P< 0·05), but did not exhibit any significant differences when compared with those in the Sham group. In conclusion, enteral bLF supplementation up-regulates small-bowel sIgA concentrations and TJ protein expression and reduces intestinal permeability and could thus support intestinal barrier integrity and protect against bacterial infections in SBS.
Recent evidence shows that excess nicotinamide can cause epigenetic changes in developing rats. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of maternal nicotinamide supplementation on the fetus. Female rats were randomised into four groups fed a standard chow diet (control group) or diets supplemented with 1 g/kg of nicotinamide (low-dose group), 4 g/kg of nicotinamide (high-dose group) or 4 g/kg of nicotinamide plus 2 g/kg of betaine (betaine group) for 14–16 d before mating and throughout the study. Fetal tissue samples were collected on the 20th day of pregnancy. Compared with the control group, the high-dose group had a higher fetal death rate, and the average fetal body weight was higher in the low-dose group but lower in the high-dose group. Nicotinamide supplementation led to a decrease in placental and fetal hepatic genomic DNA methylation and genomic uracil contents (a factor modifying DNA for diversity) in the placenta and fetal liver and brain, which could be completely or partially prevented by betaine. Moreover, nicotinamide supplementation induced tissue-specific alterations in the mRNA expression of the genes encoding nicotinamide N-methyltransferase, DNA methyltransferase 1, catalase and tumour protein p53 in the placenta and fetal liver. High-dose nicotinamide supplementation increased fetal hepatic α-fetoprotein mRNA level, which was prevented by betaine supplementation. It is concluded that maternal nicotinamide supplementation can induce changes in fetal epigenetic modification and DNA base composition. The present study raises the concern that maternal nicotinamide supplementation may play a role in the development of epigenetic-related diseases in the offspring.
Ecological evidence suggests that niacin (nicotinamide and nicotinic acid) fortification may be involved in the increased prevalence of obesity and type 2 diabetes, both of which are associated with insulin resistance and epigenetic changes. The purpose of the present study was to investigate nicotinamide-induced metabolic changes and their relationship with possible epigenetic changes. Male rats (5 weeks old) were fed with a basal diet (control group) or diets supplemented with 1 or 4 g/kg of nicotinamide for 8 weeks. Low-dose nicotinamide exposure increased weight gain, but high-dose one did not. The nicotinamide-treated rats had higher hepatic and renal levels of 8-hydroxy-2′-deoxyguanosine, a marker of DNA damage, and impaired glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity when compared with the control rats. Nicotinamide supplementation increased the plasma levels of nicotinamide, N1-methylnicotinamide and choline and decreased the levels of betaine, which is associated with a decrease in global hepatic DNA methylation and uracil content in DNA. Nicotinamide had gene-specific effects on the methylation of CpG sites within the promoters and the expression of hepatic genes tested that are responsible for methyl transfer reactions (nicotinamide N-methyltransferase and DNA methyltransferase 1), for homocysteine metabolism (betaine–homocysteine S-methyltransferase, methionine synthase and cystathionine β-synthase) and for oxidative defence (catalase and tumour protein p53). It is concluded that nicotinamide-induced oxidative tissue injury, insulin resistance and disturbed methyl metabolism can lead to epigenetic changes. The present study suggests that long-term high nicotinamide intake (e.g. induced by niacin fortification) may be a risk factor for methylation- and insulin resistance-related metabolic abnormalities.