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Fossil feathers have greatly improved our understanding of the evolutionary transition from non-avian dinosaurs to birds and the evolution of feathers, and may be the only evidence for their source animals in the fossil record. Hot spring environments have been demonstrated to be conducive to the preservation of fossils, but internal silicification of feathers was not observed in the only avian carcass so far discovered in ancient hot spring deposits. To determine whether feathers can be internally silicified, here we analyse feathers sampled from a modern hot spring vent pool – Champagne Pool – in New Zealand. Our results of scanning electron microscopy (SEM)-energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry elemental mapping show that the sampled feathers are silicified to different degrees, and one of them is pervasively silicified. SEM observations show that feathers can be silicified at the cellular level. Degradation is involved in the silicification of feathers, as indicated by the reduction of the abundance of carbon and the loss of keratin fibrils. Our findings suggest that ancient deposits of hot spring vent pools are promising targets in search for fossil feathers.
Increasing evidence supports sarcopenia as an important parameter for predicting cardiometabolic risks. The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between muscle mass, muscle strength, and physical performance, and cardiovascular risk among older community-dwelling adults.
The associations between dynapenia, sarcopenia, and Framingham risk score (FRS) were estimated by multivariate regression models.
Muscle mass is estimated by skeletal muscle mass index using a bioelectrical impedance analysis. Muscle strength is measured by handgrip strength using an analogue isometric dynamometer. Physical performance is measured by gait speed using a 6-m walking distance. Dynapenia was defined as low muscle strength and/or slow gait speed presents with normal muscle mass. The diagnosis of presarcopenia and sarcopenia was based on criteria proposed by the Asian Working Group for Sarcopenia in 2014. The FRS was used for evaluating 10-year coronary heart disease (CHD) risk.
Adults aged 65 years and older who attended health examinations from 2015 to 2017 were recruited.
There were totally 709 subjects enrolled in this study. Dynapenic men (n 47) had 17·70 ± 5·08 % FRS and sarcopenic women (n 74) had 7·74 ± 6·06 % FRS. Participants with presarcopenia had the lowest FRS (men: 15·41 ± 5·35 %; women: 5·25 ± 3·70 %). Men with dynapenia had higher FRS than the presarcopenia group with odds ratio (OR) of 2·52 (95 % confidence interval (CI): 1·03, 6·14). Women with sarcopenia had significantly higher FRS than the presarcopenia group with OR of 2·81 (95 % CI: 1·09, 7·27).
Older dynapenic men and older sarcopenic women had higher risks of 10-year CHD. Presarcopenic older adults had the lowest CHD risk in both genders.
We performed U–Pb dating of detrital zircons and conducted petrological and whole-rock geochemical analyses to assess the provenance of the Upper Triassic – Lower Jurassic clastic rocks in the southeastern margin of the South China Block. Detrital zircon U–Pb ages are mainly classified into age groups of 2000–1700, 900–700, 490–390 and 280–210 Ma, consistent with derivation from the Jiangnan orogenic belt, Nanling Belt, as well as Wuyi and Yunkai domains. Lower Jurassic samples yield a special main age population of 200–190 Ma, and these detrital zircon grains have low Th/U and Nb/Hf ratios and high Th/Nb and Hf/Th ratios, showing they are derived from a continental magmatic arc. However, the cross-correlation and likeness coefficients of kernel density estimates of Upper Triassic and Lower Jurassic sandstones are 0.8608 and 0.8403, indicating that their populations are highly similar. Since the tectonic setting is the key factor in controlling the relationship between source and sink, the stable supply of identical provenance suggests that the tectonic setting did not significantly change during Late Triassic – Early Jurassic time. Sandstone petrography, regional facies distribution and the detrital zircon age patterns all reflect a consistent tectonic setting for the South China Block during Late Triassic – Early Jurassic time. The Palaeo-Pacific subduction therefore did not control the tectonic evolution of the South China Block until after the Early Jurassic Epoch.
This study was designed to investigate the effects of dietary starch structure on muscle protein synthesis and gastrointestinal amino acid (AA) transport and metabolism of goats. Twenty-seven Xiangdong black female goats (average body weight = 9·00 ± 1·12 kg) were randomly assigned to three treatments, i.e., fed a T1 (normal maize 100 %, high amylose maize 0 %), T2 (normal maize 50 %, high amylose maize 50 %) and T3 (normal maize 0 %, high amylose maize 100 %) diet for 35 d. All AA in the ileal mucosa were decreased linearly as amylose:amylopectin increased in diets (P < 0·05). The plasma valine (linear, P = 0·03), leucine (linear, P = 0·04) and total AA content (linear, P = 0·03) increased linearly with the increase in the ratio of amylose in the diet. The relative mRNA levels of solute carrier family 38 member 1 (linear, P = 0·01), solute carrier family 3 member 2 (linear, P = 0·02) and solute carrier family 38 member 9 (linear, P = 0·02) in the ileum increased linearly with the increase in the ratio of amylose in the diet. With the increase in the ratio of amylose:amylopectin in the diet, the mRNA levels of acetyl-CoA dehydrogenase B (linear, P = 0·04), branched-chain amino acid transferase 1 (linear, P = 0·02) and branched-chain α-keto acid dehydrogenase complex B (linear, P = 0·01) in the ileum decreased linearly. Our results revealed that the protein abundances of phosphorylated mammalian target of rapamycin (p-mTOR) (P < 0·001), phosphorylated 4E-binding protein 1 (P < 0·001) and phosphorylated ribosomal protein S6 kinases 1 (P < 0·001) of T2 and T3 were significantly higher than that of T1. In general, a diet with a high amylose ratio could reduce the consumption of AA in the intestine, allowing more AA to enter the blood to maintain higher muscle protein synthesis through the mTOR pathway.
The development of high-yielding, short-duration super-rice hybrids is important for ensuring food security in China where multiple cropping is widely practiced and large-scale farming has gradually emerged. In this study, field experiments were conducted over 3 years to identify the yield formation characteristics in the shorter-duration (∼120 days) super-rice hybrid ‘Guiliangyou 2’ (G2) by comparing it with the longer-duration (∼130 days) super-rice hybrid ‘Y-liangyou 1’ (Y1). The results showed that G2 had a shorter pre-heading growth duration and consequently a shorter total growth duration compared to Y1. Compared to Y1, G2 had lower total biomass production that resulted from lower daily solar radiation, apparent radiation use efficiency (RUE), crop growth rate (CGR), and biomass production during the pre-heading period, but the grain yield was not significantly lower than that of Y1 because it was compensated for by the higher harvest index that resulted from slower leaf senescence (i.e., slower decline in leaf area index during the post-heading period) and higher RUE, CGR, and biomass production during the post-heading period. Our findings suggest that it is feasible to reduce the dependence of yield formation on growth duration to a certain extent in rice by increasing the use efficiency of solar radiation through crop improvement and also highlight the need for a greater fundamental understanding of the physiological processes involved in the higher use efficiency of solar radiation in super-rice hybrids.
The most important issue for the clinical application of sarcopenic obesity (SO) is the lack of a consensus definition. The aim of the present study was to determine the best measurement for SO by estimating the association between various definitions and the risk of falls and metabolic syndrome (MS). We studied a community of 765 adults aged 65 years and older in 2015–2017. Sarcopenia obesity was measured by sarcopenia (defined by low muscle mass with either low handgrip strength or low gait speed or both) plus obesity (defined by waist circumference, body fat percentage and BMI). The MS was defined according to the National Cholesterol Education Program ATP III. Logistic regression models were constructed to examine the relationships between sarcopenia obesity and risk of fall and MS. In the analysis of the fall risk with SO defined by waist circumference, the participants with non-sarcopenia/non-obesity were treated as the reference group. The OR to fall in participants with SO was 10·16 (95 % CI 2·71, 38·13) after adjusting for confounding covariates. In the analysis of the risk of the MS between participants with individual components of sarcopenia coupled with obesity defined by waist circumference, the risk was statistically significant for low gait speed (OR: 7·19; 95 % CI 3·61, 14·30) and low grip strength (OR: 9·19; 95 % CI 5·00, 16·91). A combination of low grip strength and abdominal obesity for identifying SO may be a more precise and practical method for predicting target populations with unfavourable health risks, such as falls risk and MS.
Whether borderline personality disorder (BPD) and bipolar disorder are the same or different disorders lacks consistency.
To detect whether grey matter volume (GMV) and grey matter density (GMD) alterations show any similarities or differences between BPD and bipolar disorder.
Web-based publication databases were searched to conduct a meta-analysis of all voxel-based studies that compared BPD or bipolar disorder with healthy controls. We included 13 BPD studies (395 patients with BPD and 415 healthy controls) and 47 bipolar disorder studies (2111 patients with bipolar disorder and 3261 healthy controls). Peak coordinates from clusters with significant group differences were extracted. Effect-size signed differential mapping meta-analysis was performed to analyse peak coordinates of clusters and thresholds (P < 0.005, uncorrected). Conjunction analyses identified regions in which disorders showed common patterns of volumetric alteration. Correlation analyses were also performed.
Patients with BPD showed decreased GMV and GMD in the bilateral medial prefrontal cortex network (mPFC), bilateral amygdala and right parahippocampal gyrus; patients with bipolar disorder showed decreased GMV and GMD in the bilateral medial orbital frontal cortex (mOFC), right insula and right thalamus, and increased GMV and GMD in the right putamen. Multi-modal analysis indicated smaller volumes in both disorders in clusters in the right medial orbital frontal cortex. Decreased bilateral mPFC in BPD was partly mediated by patient age. Increased GMV and GMD of the right putamen was positively correlated with Young Mania Rating Scale scores in bipolar disorder.
Our results show different patterns of GMV and GMD alteration and do not support the hypothesis that bipolar disorder and BPD are on the same affective spectrum.
In this study, a thermal–elastic–plastic finite element model is proposed to investigate the effect of volume energy density on the temperature field, molten pool size, and residual stress distribution in the selective laser melting (SLM) process of Inconel 718 alloy. A temperature-dependent thermal–mechanical property of materials is considered, as well as the properties conversion between powder layer and solidified alloy. Within the scope of the study parameters, the simulated molten pool size increases with increasing volume energy density and exhibits linear growth relationship, which are validated by the experimental results and show a good agreement. In addition, five scanning strategies are adopted to study the effect of these scanning strategies on the residual stress distribution in this research. The results show that the residual stress distribution of SLM Inconel 718 specimen largely depends on the scanning strategy. Finally, to reveal the mechanism of residual stress formation, the restraint bar model is used to further analyze the formation mechanism of residual stress during the SLM process.
To assess the effect of famine exposure during early life on dietary patterns, chronic diseases, and the interaction effect between famine exposure and dietary patterns on chronic diseases in adulthood.
Cross-sectional study. Dietary patterns were derived by factor analysis. Multivariate quantile regression and log-binomial regression were used to evaluate the impact of famine exposure on dietary patterns, chronic diseases and the interaction effect between famine exposure and dietary patterns on chronic diseases, respectively.
Adults aged 45–60 years (n 939).
‘Healthy’, ‘high-fat and high-salt’, ‘Western’ and ‘traditional Chinese’ dietary patterns were identified. Early-childhood and mid-childhood famine exposure were remarkably correlated with high intake of the traditional Chinese dietary pattern. Compared with the non-exposed group (prevalence ratio (PR); 95 % CI), early-childhood (3·13; 1·43, 6·84) and mid-childhood (2·37; 1·05, 5·36) exposed groups showed an increased PR for diabetes, and the early-childhood (2·07; 1·01, 4·25) exposed group showed an increased PR for hypercholesterolaemia. Additionally, relative to the combination of non-exposed group and low-dichotomous high-fat and high-salt dietary pattern, the combination of famine exposure in early life and high-dichotomous high-fat and high-salt dietary pattern in adulthood had higher PR for diabetes (4·95; 1·66, 9·05) and hypercholesterolaemia (3·71; 1·73, 7·60), and significant additive interactions were observed.
Having suffered the Chinese famine in childhood might affect an individual’s dietary habits and health status, and the joint effect between famine and harmful dietary pattern could have serious consequences on later-life health outcomes.
Suicide attempt (SA), which is one of the strongest predictors of completed suicide, is common in major depressive disorder (MDD) but its prevalence across epidemiological studies has been mixed. The aim of this comprehensive meta-analysis was to examine the pooled prevalence of SA in individuals with MDD.
A systematic literature search was conducted in PubMed, Embase, PsycINFO, Web of Science and Cochrane Library from their commencement date until 27 December 2017. Original studies containing data on prevalence of SA in individuals with MDD were analyzed.
In all, 65 studies with a total of 27 340 individuals with MDD were included. Using the random effects model, the pooled lifetime prevalence of SA was 31% [95% confidence interval (CI) 27–34%], 1-year prevalence was 8% (95% CI 3–14%) and 1-month prevalence was 24% (95% CI 15–34%). Subgroup analyses revealed that the lifetime prevalence of SA was significantly associated with the patient setting, study region and income level, while the 1-month prevalence of SA was associated with only the patient setting.
This meta-analysis confirmed that SA was common in individuals with MDD across the world. Careful screening and appropriate interventions should be implemented for SA in the MDD population.
Physical and chemical properties of graphene-metal interfaces have been largely examined with the objective of producing nanostructured carbon-based electronic devices. Although electronic properties are key to such devices, appropriate structural, thermal and mechanical properties are important for device performance as well. One of the most studied is the graphene-titanium (G-Ti) interface. Titanium is a low density, high strength versatile metal that can form alloys with desirable properties for applications ranging from aerospace to medicine. Small clusters and thin films of titanium deposited on graphene have also been examined. However, while some experiments show that thin films of titanium on graphene can be removed without damaging graphene hexagonal structure, others reported the formation of titanium-carbide (TiC) at G-Ti interfaces. In a previous work [ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 2017, 9 (38), pp 33288-33297], we have shown that pristine G-Ti interfaces are resilient to large thermal fluctuations even when G-Ti structures lie on curved or kinked substrates. Here, using classical molecular dynamics with the third-generation Charge Optimized Many Body (COMB3) potential, we show that di-interstitial defective G-Ti structures on a copper substrate with a relatively large curvature kink, present signs of TiC formation. This result might help explain the different experimental results mentioned above.
The discovery of the first electromagnetic counterpart to a gravitational wave signal has generated follow-up observations by over 50 facilities world-wide, ushering in the new era of multi-messenger astronomy. In this paper, we present follow-up observations of the gravitational wave event GW170817 and its electromagnetic counterpart SSS17a/DLT17ck (IAU label AT2017gfo) by 14 Australian telescopes and partner observatories as part of Australian-based and Australian-led research programs. We report early- to late-time multi-wavelength observations, including optical imaging and spectroscopy, mid-infrared imaging, radio imaging, and searches for fast radio bursts. Our optical spectra reveal that the transient source emission cooled from approximately 6 400 K to 2 100 K over a 7-d period and produced no significant optical emission lines. The spectral profiles, cooling rate, and photometric light curves are consistent with the expected outburst and subsequent processes of a binary neutron star merger. Star formation in the host galaxy probably ceased at least a Gyr ago, although there is evidence for a galaxy merger. Binary pulsars with short (100 Myr) decay times are therefore unlikely progenitors, but pulsars like PSR B1534+12 with its 2.7 Gyr coalescence time could produce such a merger. The displacement (~2.2 kpc) of the binary star system from the centre of the main galaxy is not unusual for stars in the host galaxy or stars originating in the merging galaxy, and therefore any constraints on the kick velocity imparted to the progenitor are poor.
We construct modulus-based synchronous multisplitting iteration methods to solve a large implicit complementarity problem on parallel multiprocessor systems, and prove their convergence. Numerical results confirm our theoretical analysis and show that these new methods are efficient.
Fixed-point iterative sweeping methods were developed in the literature to efficiently solve static Hamilton-Jacobi equations. This class of methods utilizes the Gauss-Seidel iterations and alternating sweeping strategy to achieve fast convergence rate. They take advantage of the properties of hyperbolic partial differential equations (PDEs) and try to cover a family of characteristics of the corresponding Hamilton-Jacobi equation in a certain direction simultaneously in each sweeping order. Different from other fast sweeping methods, fixed-point iterative sweeping methods have the advantages such as that they have explicit forms and do not involve inverse operation of nonlinear local systems. In principle, it can be applied in solving very general equations using any monotone numerical fluxes and high order approximations easily. In this paper, based on the recently developed fifth order WENO schemes which improve the convergence of the classical WENO schemes by removing slight post-shock oscillations, we design fifth order fixed-point sweeping WENO methods for efficient computation of steady state solution of hyperbolic conservation laws. Especially, we show that although the methods do not have linear computational complexity, they converge to steady state solutions much faster than regular time-marching approach by stability improvement for high order schemes with a forward Euler time-marching.
Gradual fault detection is always an important issue in integrated navigation systems, and the gradual fault is the most difficult fault to detect. To detect gradual faults in a timely and precise manner in integrated navigation systems, the statistical concepts of the normalised residual mean and the sum of absolute residuals are introduced according to the characteristics of gradual system failure in this paper. The applicability of the improved residual χ2 detection method is discussed. Then, the gradual fault detection program based on the improved residual χ2 detection method is designed with the criterion of normalised residual mean and the sum of absolute residual. The simulation results and vehicle tests show that: 1) The residual of the failed sub-system can be calculated accurately with the improved residual χ2 detection method, which has strong applicability in gradual fault detection; 2) The gradual fault can be detected in a short time by using the normalised residual mean and the sum of absolute residual.
Alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) is known to be a natural antioxidant. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the cryoprotective effect of ALA on the motility of boar spermatozoa and its antioxidant effect on boar spermatozoa during freezing–thawing. Different concentrations (2.0, 4.0, 6.0, 8.0 or 10.0 mg/ml) of ALA were added to the extender used to freeze boar semen, and the effects on the quality and endogenous antioxidant enzyme activities of frozen–thawed spermatozoa were assessed. The results indicated that the addition of ALA to the extender resulted in a higher percentage of motile spermatozoa post-thaw (P < 0.05). The activities of superoxide dismutase, lactate dehydrogenase, glutamic-oxaloacetic transaminase and catalase improved after adding ALA to the extender (P < 0.05). Artificial insemination results showed that pregnancy rate and litter size were significantly higher at 6.0 mg/ml in the ALA group than in the control group (P < 0.05). In conclusion, ALA conferred a cryoprotective capacity to the extender used for boar semen during the process of freezing–thawing, and the optimal concentration of ALA for the frozen extender was 6.0 mg/ml.
Due to the special working environment of teleoperation, there are usually uncertainties existing in the dynamics of teleoperating robots. In this paper, an adaptive bilateral control scheme is proposed for the nonlinear teleoperation with parameterized dynamic uncertainties and time delays. Compared to the existing time-delay adaptive bilateral controllers, the proposed scheme has the advantage of faster and more accurate parameter adaptation. In this way, the transient performance of teleoperators can be improved without increasing the control gains, which is helpful for stability of teleoperation. The adaptive bilateral controller is designed to be applicable both in free motion and in constrained motion. The synchronization errors in the unconstrained subspace are asymptotically convergent under time delays. In the constrained subspace, the contact force remains bounded with the proposed controller. The stability of teleoperation is proved using Lyapunov methods and the passivity theory. Simulation results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method.
Despite substantial research, uncertainty remains about the clinical and etiological heterogeneity of major depression (MD). Can meaningful and valid subtypes be identified and would they be stable cross-culturally?
Symptoms at their lifetime worst depressive episode were assessed at structured psychiatric interview in 6008 women of Han Chinese descent, age ⩾30 years, with recurrent DSM-IV MD. Latent class analysis (LCA) was performed in Mplus.
Using the nine DSM-IV MD symptomatic A criteria, the 14 disaggregated DSM-IV criteria and all independently assessed depressive symptoms (n = 27), the best LCA model identified respectively three, four and six classes. A severe and non-suicidal class was seen in all solutions, as was a mild/moderate subtype. An atypical class emerged once bidirectional neurovegetative symptoms were included. The non-suicidal class demonstrated low levels of worthlessness/guilt and hopelessness. Patterns of co-morbidity, family history, personality, environmental precipitants, recurrence and body mass index (BMI) differed meaningfully across subtypes, with the atypical class standing out as particularly distinct.
MD is a clinically complex syndrome with several detectable subtypes with distinct clinical and demographic correlates. Three subtypes were most consistently identified in our analyses: severe, atypical and non-suicidal. Severe and atypical MD have been identified in multiple prior studies in samples of European ethnicity. Our non-suicidal subtype, with low levels of guilt and hopelessness, may represent a pathoplastic variant reflecting Chinese cultural influences.
In this paper, an adaptive force reflection scheme is proposed for bilateral teleoperation. In order to achieve an ideal telepresence performance while keeping the system stable, the force reflection algorithm needs to take both the human force and the contact force into consideration. An observer based on the feature of the human operator is designed to estimate the force applied on the master device. The reflected force is calculated by performing the orthogonal decomposition of the contact force, and is adjusted adaptively according to the estimated human force. The direction of the reflected force becomes a key consideration in the design process, so the proposed approach has an advantage in the guiding contact task. Based on the small gain theorem, the master device with the force reflection scheme is proved to be input-to-output stable, and the derivation for stability criterion of the closed-loop teleoperation system is also given. The results of simulations and experiments on a 6-degree of freedom teleoperation system demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed scheme.