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High-molecular-weight glutenin subunits (HMW-GS) contribute to dough elasticity and bread baking quality in wheat. In this study, wheat varieties were classified based on their HMW-GS composition into three groups: 1Dx5 (5 + 10, Gaoyou 8901, Xinmai 28, Xinmai 19, Xinmai 26 and Jinbaoyin), 1Dx2 (2 + 12, Zhoumai 24, Xinmai 9 and Yumai) and 1Dx4 (4 + 12, Aikang 58). Sequence analysis showed that 1Dx-GY8901, 1Dx-XM28, 1Dx-XM19 and 1Dx-XM26 were similar to the 1Dx5 gene and clustered on the same branch, while 1Dx-AK58, 1Dx-ZM24, 1Dx-JBY, 1Dx-YM, 1Dx-XM9 and 1Dx-JBY were more similar to the 1Dx2 gene and clustered on the same branch with 1Dx.2.2. There was a mutation of Ser to Cys at position S2, for an extra Cys in the repeat regions of 1Dx-XM19, 1Dx-XM26, 1Dx-XM28 and 1Dx-GY8901. The wheat HMW-GS genes exhibited similar percentages of α-helix, extended strand, β-turn and random coil structure, with ranges of 13.33–13.59, 4.77–5.78, 7.08–9.18 and 72.3–73.94%, respectively. Sequence conservation and the composition of HMW-GS subunits were also analysed for a series of strong gluten wheat varieties, Xinmai 9 (1, 7 + 8, 2 + 12), Xinmai 19 (1, 7 + 9, 5 + 10), Xinmai 26 (1, 7 + 8, 5 + 10) and Xinmai 28 (1, 7 + 9, 5 + 10). The results of this work should facilitate future breeding efforts and provide the theoretical basis for wheat quality improvement.
Recently, the collisionless pitch-angle scattering for relativistic runaway electrons (REs) in toroidal geometries such as tokamaks was discovered through a full orbit simulation approach (Liu et al., Nucl. Fusion, vol. 56, 2016, p. 064002), and it was then theoretically investigated that a new expression for the magnetic moment, including the second-order corrections, could essentially reproduce the so-called collisionless pitch-angle scattering process (Liu et al., Nucl. Fusion, vol. 58, 2018, p. 106018). In this paper, with synchrotron radiation, extensive numerical verification of the validity of the high-order guiding-centre theory is given for simulations involving REs by incorporating such an expression for the magnetic moment into our particle tracing code. A high-order guiding-centre simulation approach with synchrotron radiation (HGSA) is applied. Synchrotron radiation plays an essential role in the life cycle of REs. The energy of REs first increases and then becomes saturated until the electric field acceleration is balanced by the radiation dissipation. Unfortunately, the process cannot be simulated accurately with the standard guiding-centre model, i.e. the first-order guiding-centre model. Remarkably, it is found that the HGSA can effectively produce the fundamental process of REs. Since the time scale of the energy saturation of REs is close to seconds, the computational cost becomes significant. In order to save costs, it is necessary to estimate the time of energy saturation. An analytical estimate is derived for the time it takes for synchrotron drag to balance an accelerating electric field and the provided formula has been numerically verified. Test calculations reveal that HGSA is favourable for exploiting the dynamics of REs in tokamak plasmas.
Pneumatic muscle actuator (PMA) similar to biological muscle is a new type of pneumatic actuator. The flexible manipulator based on PMAs was constructed to simulate the actual movement of the human upper arm. Considering the model errors and external disturbances, the fuzzing sliding mode control based on the saturation function was proposed. Compared with other fuzzy control methods, fuzzy control and saturation function are used to adjust the robust terms to improve the tracking accuracy and reduce the high-frequency chattering.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, some K-12 schools resumed in-person classes with varying degrees of mitigation plans in the fall 2020. Physical distancing and face coverings can minimize SARS-CoV-2 spread, the virus that causes COVID-19. However, no research has focused on adherence to mitigation strategies during school days. Thus, we sought to develop a systematic observation protocol to capture COVID-19 mitigation strategy adherence in school environments: The Systematic Observation of COVID-19 Mitigation (SOCOM).
We extended previously validated and internationally used tools to develop the SOCOM training and implementation protocols to assess physical-distancing and face-covering behaviors. SOCOM was tested in diverse indoor and outdoor settings (classrooms, lunchrooms, physical education [PE], and recess) among diverse schools (elementary, secondary, and special needs).
For the unique metrics of physical-distancing and face-covering behaviors, areas with less activity and a maximum of 10–15 students were more favorable for accurately capturing data. Overall proportion of agreement was high for physical distancing (90.9%), face covering (88.6%), activity type (89.2%), and physical activity level (87.9%). Agreement was lowest during active recess, PE, and observation areas with ≥20 students.
Millions of children throughout the USA are likely to return to school in the months ahead. SOCOM is a relatively inexpensive research tool that can be implemented by schools to determine mitigation strategy adherence and to assess protocols that allow students return to school safely and slow the spread of COVID-19.
Meiosis is a highly conserved process, and is responsible for the production of haploid gametes and generation of genetic diversity. We previously identified the transferrin receptor (TFRC) in the proteome profile of mice neonatal testes, indicating the involvement of the TFRC in meiosis. However, the exact molecular role of the TFRC in meiosis remains unclear. In this study, we aimed to determine the function of the TFRC in neonatal testicular development by TFRC knockdown using the testis culture platform. Our results showed high TFRC expression in 2-week testes, corresponding to the first meiotic division. Targeting TFRC using morpholino oligonucleotides resulted in clear spermatocyte apoptosis. In addition, we used the chromosomal spread technique to show that a deficiency of TFRC caused the accumulation of leptotene and zygotene spermatocytes, and a decrease of pachytene spermatocytes, indicating early meiotic arrest. Moreover, the chromosomes of TFRC-deficient pachytene spermatocytes displayed sustained γH2AX association, as well as SYCP1/SYCP3 dissociation beyond the sex body. Therefore, our results demonstrated that the TFRC is essential for the progression of spermatocyte meiosis, particularly for DNA double-stranded break repair and chromosomal synapsis.
Cotton fibre yield and quality are markedly influenced by drought and high-temperature stress. We examined the traits of the leaf stomata in 39 cotton genotypes subjected to exogenous phytohormone abscisic acid (ABA) signalling, electrolyte leakage under 40°C thermal stress, and relative GhHsfA, GhbZIP and GhHSP70 expression levels under two treatments. Stomatal density and area ranged from 66 to 182/mm2 and 663 to 1305 μm2, respectively. Under exogenous ABA signalling, the changes in stomatal aperture (ΔSAp) were in the range of 2.5–31.2%; ΔSAp and relative GhHsfA, GhbZIP and GhHSP70 expression levels were significantly correlated, respectively. Electrolyte leakage increased unequally among cotton genotypes after heat stress. The changes in electrolyte leakage (ΔEL) and relative GhHsfA, GhbZIP and GhHSP70 expression levels were very strongly correlated, respectively. Their relative expression levels could be used as references for the rapid identification of stress-tolerant cotton strains. Cluster analysis of the 39 cotton genotypes indicated that Xinluzao36, Shiyang1, shinong98-7 and Zhongmiansuo293 are heat- and drought-resistant. We integrated both analysis of physiological parameters and molecular methods to identify cotton varieties with the drought and heat tolerance, in order to provide a reference for the selection of materials and methods for the research and production of cotton.
Many institutions evaluate applications for local seed funding by recruiting peer reviewers from their own institutional community. Smaller institutions, however, often face difficulty locating qualified local reviewers who are not in conflict with the proposal. As a larger pool of reviewers may be accessed through a cross-institutional collaborative process, nine Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) hubs formed a consortium in 2016 to facilitate reviewer exchanges. Data were collected to evaluate the feasibility and preliminary efficacy of the consortium.
The CTSA External Reviewer Exchange Consortium (CEREC) has been supported by a custom-built web-based application that facilitates the process and tracks the efficiency and productivity of the exchange.
All nine of the original CEREC members remain actively engaged in the exchange. Between January 2017 and May 2019, CEREC supported the review process for 23 individual calls for proposals. Out of the 412 reviews requested, 368 were received, for a fulfillment ratio of 89.3%. The yield on reviewer invitations has remained consistently high, with approximately one-third of invitations being accepted, and of the reviewers who agreed to provide a review, 88.3% submitted a complete review. Surveys of reviewers and pilot program administrators indicate high satisfaction with the process.
These data indicate that a reviewer exchange consortium is feasible, adds value to participating partners, and is sustainable over time.
Environmental characteristics (for example, temperature, photoperiod) as seasonal cues can affect the offspring sex ratio and reproductive tactics of many hymenopteran insects. Leptocybe invasa Fisher & La Salle is the most critical invasive insect pest of Eucalyptus spp. in the world and displays thelytokous reproduction. In the current study, we studied the effects of temperature and photoperiod on offspring sex ratio and reproductive tactics in L. invasa. Results show that sex ratio (female: male) of L. invasa was under 15, 25 and 35 °C with both L 12: D 12 and L 16: D 8, and cold and thermal acclimation were 74.5:1, 71.0:1, 59.0:0, 17.3:1, 53.0:0, 64.0:0, 47.0:1 and 56.0:0, respectively, which was highly significantly female biased and with no significant difference due to temperature or photoperiod. Offspring virgin females oviposited and induced the bump-shaped galls on plants under the same conditions as described above. Constant temperature, photoperiod and their interaction, and cold and thermal acclimation had no significant effect on the infestation rates of Eucalyptus branches induced by offspring virgin females. Thus, temperature, photoperiod and cold and thermal acclimation did not influence female-biased sex ratio and tactics with thelytokous reproduction of offspring females in L. invasa.
CVD remains the leading cause of mortality worldwide, with abnormal lipid metabolism as a major risk factor. The aim of this study was to investigate associations between spicy food consumption and serum lipids in Chinese adults. Data were extracted from the 2009 phase of the China Health and Nutrition Survey, consisting of 6774 apparently healthy Chinese adults aged 18–65 years. The frequency of consumption and degree of pungency of spicy food were self-reported, and regular spicy food consumption was assessed using three consecutive 24-h recalls. Total cholesterol, TAG, LDL-cholesterol and HDL-cholesterol in fasting serum were measured. Multilevel mixed-effects models were constructed to estimate associations between spicy food consumption and serum lipid profiles. The results showed that the frequency and the average amount of spicy food intake were both inversely associated with LDL-cholesterol and LDL-cholesterol:HDL-cholesterol ratio (all Pfor trend<0·05) after adjustment for potential confounders and cluster effects. HDL-cholesterol in participants who usually consumed spicy food (≥5 times/week) and who consumed spicy food perceived as moderate in pungency were significantly higher than those who did not (both P<0·01). The frequency and the average amount of spicy food intake and the degree of pungency in spicy food were positively associated with TAG (all Pfor trend<0·05). Spicy food consumption was inversely associated with serum cholesterol and positively associated with serum TAG, and additional studies are needed to confirm the findings as well as to elucidate the potential roles of spicy food consumption in lipid metabolism.
Large volumes of data and multiple computing platforms are now universal components of paediatric cardiovascular medicine, but are in a constant state of evolution. Often, multiple sets of related data reside in disconnected “silos”, resulting in clinical, administrative, and research activities that may be duplicative, inefficient, and at times inaccurate. Comprehensive and integrated data solutions are needed to facilitate these activities across congenital heart centres. We describe methodology, key considerations, successful use cases, and lessons learnt in developing an integrated data platform across our congenital heart centre.
Accurate velocity estimates are critical in highly dynamic positioning, airborne gravimetry, and geophysics applications. This paper focuses on the evaluation of the performance of velocity estimation using the BeiDou navigation satellite system (BDS) alone and integrated Global Positioning System (GPS)/BDS. Firstly, we analyse and compare the position-derivation method and analytical method which are used to calculate BDS satellite velocity from broadcast ephemeris. Results show that the accuracy of the estimated velocity by position-derivation method can be within 1 mm/s and better than that of the analytical method. Secondly, velocity estimation tests were carried out both in static and kinematic modes. The results show that: 1) the accuracy of BDS velocity estimation is in the same order of magnitude to that of GPS; 2) Compared with a single navigation system, the stability and accuracy of velocity estimation can be remarkably improved by integrated GPS/BDS, especially under conditions of poor observation; 3) Compared with Helmert variance component estimation, it is more appropriate and efficient to assign the weights of different types of observations using equivalent weight ratio. Finally, the ionospheric influence on velocity estimation with single-frequency observations can reach several mm/s; this influence can be significantly mitigated by using ionosphere-free combination observations.
Facilitated by recent establishment of terrestrial networks and satellite constellations of Automatic Identification System (AIS) receivers, ship trajectories are becoming increasingly available and the size of recorded trajectories is getting larger. Large sets of trajectories create problems of storing, transmitting and processing data. Using appropriate methods, an accurate representation of the original trajectories can be obtained by compressing redundant information, while maintaining the main characteristic elements. In this paper, a new scheme and the implementation of the Douglas-Peucker (DP) algorithm are presented, which can simplify AIS trajectories by extracting characteristic points. As for the simplification threshold, the solo parameter of the DP algorithm, a new AIS-based minimum ship domain evaluation method is proposed and acts as criteria for simplification threshold determination. Finally, a validation is made to examine the effectiveness of the DP simplification algorithm and the rationality of the simplification threshold. The result indicates that the DP algorithm can simplify AIS trajectories effectively; the simplification threshold is scientific and reasonable.
Many recent developments of surgical robots focus on less invasive paradigms, such as laparoscopic SPA (Single Port Access) surgery, NOTES (Natural Orifice Translumenal Endoscopic Surgery), laryngoscopic MIS (Minimally Invasive Surgery), etc. A configuration similarity shared by these surgical robots is that two or more manipulators are inserted through one access port (a laparoscope, an endoscope, or a laryngoscope) for surgical interventions. However, upon designing such a surgical robot, the structure of the inserted manipulators has not been thoroughly explored based on evaluation of their performances. This paper presents a comparison for kinematic performances among three different continuum manipulators. They all could be applied in the aforementioned surgical robots. The structural parameters of these continuum manipulators are firstly optimized to assure a more fair and consistent comparison. This study is conducted in a dimensionless manner and provides scalable results for a wide spectrum of continuum manipulator designs as long as their segments have a constant curvature. The results could serve as a design reference for future developments of surgical robots which use one access port and continuum mechanisms.