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The study aims to investigate women’s psychological health, family function, and social support during the third trimester within the COVID-19 epidemic.
From January 30, 2020 to February 26, 2020, 177 pregnant women during their third trimester (mean gestation time was 37.05±4.06 weeks) in a maternal and children’s hospital were investigated using the Self-Rating Anxiety Scale (SAS), the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale, the Family APGAR Index, and the Perceived Social Support Scale. Non-parametric tests were conducted in the study. The statistical significance was set as p < 0.05.
The incidence rate of the participants’ anxiety and depression during the COVID-19 epidemic was 19.21% and 24.29%, respectively. The participants’ greatest concerns in the previous week were the risk of virus transmission (79.66%), and the prenatal examination and fetal growth (70.62%). The SAS ranks were higher in the participants who were concerned about the prenatal examination and fetal growth and work-related affairs.
The participants’ psychological health was indirectly affected by the epidemic through the supply of medical resources and work-related factors. The medical staff should employ family support and social resources to guarantee the accessibility of medical services and living materials to decrease the pregnant women’s stress and further improve their psychological health.
DNA methylation is one of the most important epigenetic modifications in breast cancer (BC) development, and long-term dietary habits have been shown to alter DNA methylation. Cadherin-4 (CDH4, a member of the cadherin family) encodes Ca2+-dependent cell-cell adhesion glycoproteins. We conducted a case-control study (380 newly-diagnosed breast cancers and 439 cancer-free controls) to explore the relationship of CDH4 methylation in peripheral blood leukocyte DNA (PBL), as well as its combined and interactive effects with dietary factors and lifestyle on BC risk. A case-only study (335 newly-diagnosed breast cancers) was conducted to analyze the association between CDH4 methylation in breast tissue DNA and dietary factors. CDH4 methylation were detected using quantitative methylation specific PCR (qMSP). Unconditional logistic regressions were used to analyze the association of CDH4 methylation in PBL DNA and BC risk. Cross-over analysis and unconditional logistic regression were used to calculate the combined and interactive effects between CDH4 methylation in PBL DNA and dietary factors in BC. CDH4 hypermethylation was significantly associated with increased BC risk in PBL DNA (ORadjusted (ORadj)= 2.70, 95% confidence interval (CI)= 1.90-3.83, P<0.001). CDH4 hypermethylation also showed significant combined effects with the consumption of <500 g/week vegetables (ORadj=4.33, 95% CI=2.63-7.10), ≤3 times/week allium vegetables (ORadj=7.00, 95% CI=4.17-11.77), <3 times/week fish (ORadj=7.92, 95% CI=3.79-16.53), <3 times/week milk (ORadj=6.30, 95% CI=3.41-11.66), >3 times/week overnight food (ORadj=4.63, 95% CI=2.69-7.99), ≥250 g/week pork (ORadj=5.59, 95% CI=2.94-10.62), and <1 time/month physical activity (ORadj=4.72, 95% CI=2.87-7.76). Moreover, consuming milk ≥ 1 times/month was significantly related with decreased risk of CDH4 methylation (OR=0.61, 95% CI=0.38-0.99) in breast tissue. Our findings may provide direct guidance on the dietary intake for specific methylated carriers to decrease their risk for developing BC.
The staining procedure is critical for investigating intra- and extra-cellular ultrastructure of microorganisms by transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Here, we propose a new ultra-low lead staining (ULLS) technique for preparing the ultrathin sections for TEM analysis. Sections of Enterobacter sp. (bacteria), Aspergillus niger (filamentous fungi), Rhodotorula mucilaginosa (fungi), and Chlamydomonas reinhardtii (microalgae) were tested. Compared with the sections prepared by the typical double-staining technique, ULLS-based sections showed evident advantages: (i) the staining process only required the addition of Pb(NO3)2; (ii) the Pb level during incubation was set as low as 1 mg/L, which had negligible toxicity to most microbial cells; (iii) the Pb cations were added during microbial culture, which avoided complicated sample preparation as in typical double staining. Taking C. reinhardtii as an example, the ULLS technique allowed fine investigation of microbial ultrastructure, e.g., starch granule, mitochondrion, Golgi apparatus, vacuole, and vesicle. Meanwhile, the physiological processes of the cells such as cell lysis and exocytosis were successfully captured, with relatively high contrast. This study hence shows a bright future on preparation of the high-quality ultrathin sections of microbial cells by the ULLS technique.
We assessed longitudinal association between calcium intake during adolescence and hypertension in adulthood.
Methods and Results:
Longitudinal study data of 1611 participants from the China Health and Nutrition Survey during 1991-2011 were used. On average they were followed for 11.4 years. Dietary calcium intake during adolescence was assessed based on three 24-hour dietary recalls collected in each visit/survey between 1991 and 2009 (seven waves). The intake was recoded into quartiles. Cumulative mean±SD calcium intake was 199.9±144.8 mg/1000 kcal/day during adolescence. In total 102 participants had hypertension in adulthood (97 men and 5 women). There was a clear U-shaped association between adolescence calcium intake quartiles and adulthood hypertension: across the quartiles, hypertension prevalence was 6.7%, 4.0%, 5.2% and 9.5%, respectively. After adjustment for potential confounders including weight status and dietary pattern, odds ratios (OR, 95%CI) for hypertension were 2.32 (95%CI 1.07-5.00) for lowest quartile, 1.00 (reference), 1.34 (95%CI 0.61-2.97), and 3.10 (95%CI 1.49-6.46) across the quartiles.
Lower or higher calcium intake during adolescence was associated with hypertension in adulthood independent of weight status and dietary pattern.
The relationship between dietary nut intake and hyperuricemia risk remains unclear. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between different nut intake and hyperuricemia risk with a cross-sectional study.
A semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) was adopted to collect dietary information. Biochemical and anthropometric parameters were measured by standard methods. Multivariate-adjusted logistic regression models were implemented to analyze the relationship between individual nut intake and hyperuricemia risk.
Qingdao University in Shandong Province, China.
During 2018-2019, a total of 14,056 undergraduates (6,862 males and 7,194 females) aged 15-25 years participated in the study.
After adjusting for multiple confounding factors, compared with the lowest quartile, the highest quartile intakes of pine nut (95% CI: 0.51, 0.98) was significantly associated with 29% reduction in hyperuricemia risk, the highest quartile intake of walnut (OR = 0.78; 95% CI: 0.58, 1.05) was marginally negatively associated with hyperuricemia risk.
The present study showed that the relationships between intakes of different nuts and hyperuricemia risk were different. Increased dietary intake of walnut and pine nut are negatively associated with the hyperuricemia.
Recent progress in using real-time kinematic (RTK) positioning has motivated the exploration of its application due to its high accuracy and efficiency. However, poorly-observed satellite data will cause unfixed ambiguities and markedly biased solutions. A novel partial ambiguity resolution method, named the irrespective of integer ambiguity resolution (IIAR) model, is proposed and applied to improve the reliability of ambiguity resolution. The proposed method contains initial ambiguity resolution and irrespective of integer ambiguity processes. The initial ambiguity resolution process applies an iterative partial ambiguity resolution method to obtain an approximate solution. The irrespective of integer ambiguity process transforms the approximate solution to a high-precision solution. Experiments show that the approximate solution is unreliable when the initial ambiguity resolution process has small redundancy, and the proposed method can obtain better results for those cases. The IIAR method showed about a 40% improvement of multi-GNSS ambiguity success rate and about a 25% improvement of standard deviation. Therefore, these results show that the proposed IIAR method can improve the results of multi-GNSS RTK positioning significantly.
Spodoptera litura is an important pest that causes significant economic damage to numerous crops worldwide. Sex pheromones (SPs) mediate sexual communication in S. litura and show a characteristic degree of rhythmic activity, occurring mainly during the scotophase; however, the specific regulatory mechanisms remain unclear. Here, we employed a genome-wide analysis to identify eight candidate circadian clock genes in S. litura. Sequence characteristics and expression patterns were analyzed. Our results demonstrated that some circadian clock genes might regulate the biosynthesis and perception of SPs by regulating the rhythmic expression of SP biosynthesis-related genes and SP perception-related genes. Interestingly, all potential genes exhibited peak expression in the scotophase, consistent with the SP could mediate courtship and mating behavior in S. litura. Our findings are helpful in elucidating the molecular mechanism by which circadian clock genes regulate sexual communication in S. litura.
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.
The prevention, treatment and control of Haemonchus contortus have been increasingly problematic due to its widespread occurrence and anthelmintic resistance. There are very few descriptions of recombinant antigens being protective for H. contortus, despite the success of various native antigen preparations, including Barbervax. We recently identified an H. contortus excretory–secretory antigen, H. contortus adhesion-regulating molecule 1 (HcADRM1), that served as an immunomodulator to impair host T-cell functions. Given the prophylactic potential of HcADRM1 protein as a vaccine candidate, we hereby assessed the efficacies of HcADRM1 preparations against H. contortus infection. Parasitological and immunological parameters were evaluated throughout all time points of the trials, including fecal egg counts (FEC), abomasal worm burdens, complete blood counts, cytokine production profiles and antibody responses. Active vaccination with recombinant HcADRM1 (rHcADRM1) protein induced protective immunity in inoculated goats, resulting in reductions of 48.9 and 58.6% in cumulative FEC and worm burdens. Simultaneously, passive administration of anti-HcADRM1 antibodies generated encouraging levels of protection with 46.7 and 56.2% reductions in cumulative FEC and worm burdens in challenged goats. In addition, HcADRM1 preparations-immunized goats showed significant differences in mucosal and serum antigen-specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) levels, total mucosal IgA levels, haemoglobin values and circulating interferon-γ, interleukin (IL)-4 and IL-17A production compared to control goats in both trials. The preliminary data of these laboratory trials validated the immunoprophylactic effects of rHcADRM1 protein. It can be pursued as a potential vaccine antigen to develop an effective recombinant subunit vaccine against H. contortus under field conditions.
Schizophrenia is a severe and complex psychiatric disorder that needs treatment based on extensive experience. Antipsychotic drugs have already become the cornerstone of the treatment for schizophrenia; however, the therapeutic effect is of significant variability among patients, and only around a third of patients with schizophrenia show good efficacy. Meanwhile, drug-induced metabolic syndrome and other side-effects significantly affect treatment adherence and prognosis. Therefore, strategies for drug selection are desperately needed. In this study, we will perform pharmacogenomics research and set up an individualised preferred treatment prediction model.
We aim to create a standard clinical cohort, with multidimensional index assessment of antipsychotic treatment for patients with schizophrenia.
This trial is designed as a randomised clinical trial comparing treatment with different kinds of antipsychotics. A total sample of 2000 patients with schizophrenia will be recruited from in-patient units from five clinical research centres. Using a computer-generated program, the participants will be randomly assigned to four treatment groups: aripiprazole, olanzapine, quetiapine and risperidone. The primary outcomes will be measured as changes in the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale of schizophrenia, which reflects the efficacy. Secondary outcomes include the measure of side-effects, such as metabolic syndromes. The efficacy evaluation and side-effects assessment will be performed at baseline, 2 weeks, 6 weeks and 3 months.
This trial will assess the efficacy and side effects of antipsychotics and create a standard clinical cohort with a multi-dimensional index assessment of antipsychotic treatment for schizophrenia patients.
This study aims to set up an individualized preferred treatment prediction model through the genetic analysis of patients using different kinds of antipsychotics.
Sarcopenic obesity is regarded as a risk factor for the progression and development of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Since male sex is a risk factor for NAFLD and skeletal muscle mass markedly varies between the sexes, we examined whether sex influences the association between appendicular skeletal muscle mass to visceral fat area ratio (SVR), that is, an index of skeletal muscle mass combined with abdominal obesity, and the histological severity of NAFLD. The SVR was measured by bioelectrical impedance in a cohort of 613 (M/F = 443/170) Chinese middle-aged individuals with biopsy-proven NAFLD. Multivariable logistic regression and subgroup analyses were used to test the association between SVR and the severity of NAFLD (i.e. non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) or NASH with the presence of any stage of liver fibrosis). NASH was identified by a NAFLD activity score ≥5, with a minimum score of 1 for each of its categories. The presence of fibrosis was classified as having a histological stage ≥1. The SVR was inversely associated with NASH in men (adjusted OR 0·62; 95 % CI 0·42, 0·92, P = 0·017 for NASH, adjusted OR 0·65; 95 % CI 0·43, 0·99, P = 0·043 for NASH with the presence of fibrosis), but not in women (1·47 (95 % CI 0·76, 2·83), P = 0·25 for NASH, and 1·45 (95 % CI 0·74, 2·83), P = 0·28 for NASH with the presence of fibrosis). There was a significant interaction for sex and SVR (Pinteraction = 0·017 for NASH and Pinteraction = 0·033 for NASH with the presence of fibrosis). Our findings show that lower skeletal muscle mass combined with abdominal obesity is strongly associated with the presence of NASH only in men.
The generation of germ cells from embryonic stem cells in vitro has current historical significance. Western blot, qPCR, immunofluorescence and flow cytometry assays were used to investigate the differences in expression levels of totipotency and specific markers for Wnt regulation and the related signalling pathways during primordial germ cell-like cell (PGCLC) induction and differentiation. During PGCLC induction, activation of WNT3a increased the expression of NANOG, SOX2 and OCT4, but Mvh, DAZL, Blimp1, TFAP2C, Gata4, SOX17, EOMES, Brachyury and PRDM1 expression levels were significantly reduced. Inhibition of the WNT signal demonstrated the opposite effect. Similarly, inhibitors of BMP and the Nodal/Activin signal were used to determine the effect of signal pathways on differentiation. CER1 affected the Wnt signal and differentiation, but the inhibitor SB only regulated differentiation. BMP–WNT–NODAL were mainly responsible for regulating differentiation. Our results provide a reliable theoretical basis and feasibility for further clinical medical research.
This study aims to investigate the pathogenic gene variant in a family with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy by using whole-exome sequencing and to explore the relationship between the gene variant and clinical phenotype.
Peripheral blood was collected from a family with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and deoxyribonucleic acid was extracted. The possible pathogenic genes were detected by whole-exome sequencing, and the variant was verified by Sanger sequencing. Functional change in the variant was predicted by bioinformatics software. Clinical data of the family members are analysed simultaneously.
The proband carries a novel heterozygous nonsense variant of MYBPC3:c.2731G > T (p.E911X). The analysis of amino acid conservation suggests that the variation is highly conserved. The three-dimensional protein structure shows that the variant in MYBPC3 results in the incompleteness of the fibronectintype-III2 (p872–967) domain and deletion of Ig-like C2-type 6 (p971–1065) and fibronectin type-III 3 and Ig-like C2-type 7 (p1181–1274) domains, in which p1253–1268 is predicted to have a transmembrane helix structure. Clinical data indicate that the phenotypes of variant carriers with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy are diverse, suggesting the functional damages to the protein of MYBPC3.
The phenotypes of variant carriers with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy caused by the novel variant in MYBPC3: c.2731G > T (p.E911X) exhibit variable severity and clinical manifestations. Whole-exome sequencing can be used to comprehensive screen hypertrophic cardiomyopathy genes and provide a strong basis for early screening and accurate diagnosis and treatment of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in children.
This study deploys RTK-GNSS in 2012, TLS in 2015 and UAV in 2018 to monitor the changes of Urumqi Glacier No. 1 (UG1), eastern Tien Shan, and analyzes the feasibility of three technologies in monitoring the mountain glaciers. DEM differencing shows that UG1 has experienced a pronounced thinning and mass loss for the period of 2012–18. The glacier surface elevation change of −0.83 ± 0.57 m w.e. a−1 has been recorded for 2012–15, whereas the changes of glacier tongue surface elevation in 2015–18 and 2012–18 were −2.03 ± 0.95 and −1.34 ± 0.88 m w.e. a−1, respectively. The glacier area shrunk by 0.07 ± 0.07 × 10−3 km2 and the terminus retreat rate was 6.28 ± 0.83 m a−1 during 2012–18. The good agreement between the glaciological and geodetic specific mass-balances is promising, showing the combination of the three technologies is suitable to monitor glacier mass change. We recommend application of the three technologies to assess each other in different locations of the glacier, e.g. RTK-GNSS base stations, ground control points, glacier tongue and terminus, in order to avoid the inherent limitations of each technology and to provide reliable data for the future studies of mountain glacier changes in western China.
Environmental hypoxia exposure causes fertility problems in human and animals. Compelling evidence suggests that chronic hypoxia impairs spermatogenesis and reduces sperm motility. However, it is unclear whether paternal hypoxic exposure affects fertilization and early embryo development. In the present study, we exposed male mice to high altitude (3200 m above sea level) for 7 or 60 days to evaluate the effects of hypoxia on sperm quality, zygotic DNA methylation and blastocyst formation. Compared with age-matched controls, hypoxia-treated males exhibited reduced fertility after mating with normoxic females as a result of defects in sperm motility and function. Results of in vitro fertilization (IVF) experiments revealed that 60 days’ exposure significantly reduced cleavage and blastocyst rates by 30% and 70%, respectively. Immunohistochemical staining of pronuclear formation indicated that the pronuclear formation process was disturbed and expression of imprinted genes was reduced in early embryos after paternal hypoxia. Overall, the findings of this study suggested that exposing male mice to hypoxia impaired sperm function and affected key events during early embryo development in mammals.
The interplay between sustainability and anthropogenic landscape transformation is crucial to understanding the past decline and eradication of wild animals. The Bronze Age site of Zaoshugounao is located in the Guanzhong region of China, an area critical in the formation and development of early Chinese civilisation. Drawing upon zooarchaeological, palaeoenvironmental and textual evidence, analysis of sika deer remains from Zaoshugounao reveals sustainable sika deer-hunting strategies at the site, despite an overall long-term trend in the sika deer population decline and habitat loss. The authors’ results highlight the complexity and diversity of human-sika relations and contribute to ongoing discussions surrounding wild animal eradication and conservation in China.
To enhance the developmental competency of murine ovarian follicles cultured in vitro, C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP) was supplemented in the culture system. Although the mechanism is not fully elucidated, it was reported that the effect of CNP supplementation was mediated by increased cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP). In the present study, cGMP levels in media for murine preantral follicle culture were compared both between a control group without CNP supplementation and an experimental group with CNP supplementation and between days in each group. In addition, follicle growth patterns and oocyte maturity were assessed and compared between the two groups. Results demonstrated that along with in vitro culture, cGMP levels increased (P < 0.05) both in the control group and the experimental group, whereas cGMP levels were not significantly different between the two groups on the same day of in vitro culture (P > 0.05). The oocyte’s maturity was superior in the experimental group compared with the control group (P < 0.05). As ovarian follicles grew three-dimensionally in the experimental group but were flattened in the control group, CNP might improve oocyte maturity through maintaining the three-dimensional architecture of the ovarian follicle because of increased transzonal projections (TZP) and functional gap junctions between oocyte and surrounding granulosa cells.
As threats to biodiversity proliferate, establishment and expansion of protected areas have increasingly been advocated in recent decades. In establishing a network of protected areas, recurrent assessments of the biodiversity conservation actually afforded by these areas is required. Gap analysis has been useful to evaluate the sufficiency and performance of protected areas. We surveyed Reeves’s Pheasant Syrmaticus reevesii populations in 2018–2019 across its distribution range in central China to quantify the distribution of habitat suitable for this species. Our goal was to ascertain the current distribution of Reeves’s Pheasant and then identify the gaps in protecting Reeves’s Pheasant of the existing national nature reserve (NNR) network to provide suggestions for improving the conservation of this important species. The existing NNR network encompassed only 17.0% of the habitat suitable for Reeves’s Pheasant. Based on the current distributions of both suitable habitat and NNRs for Reeves’s Pheasant, we suggest most currently unprotected areas comprised moderately suitable habitat for species and should be prioritized in the future. A multiple species approach using Reeves’s Pheasant as a flagship species should be considered to understand the extent of mismatch between the distributions of protected areas and suitable habitat to improve the management effectiveness of NNRs. This case study provides an example of how the development of a conservation reserve network may be based on species distribution and habitat assessments and is useful to conservation efforts in other regions and for other species.