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To investigate the association between the Metabolic Score for Visceral Fat (METS-VF) and risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and compare the predictive value of the METS-VF for T2DM incidence with other obesity indices in Chinese people. A total of 12,237 non-T2DM participants aged over 18 from the Rural Chinese Cohort Study of 2007-2008 were included at baseline and followed up during 2013-2014. The cox proportional hazards regression was used to calculate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for the association between baseline METS-VF and T2DM risk. Restricted cubic splines were used to model the association between METS-VF and T2DM risk. Area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) analysis was used to evaluate the ability of METS-VF to predict T2DM incidence. During a median follow-up of 6.01 (5.09-6.06) years, 837 cases developed T2DM. After adjusting for potential confounding factors, the adjusted HR (95% CI) for the highest versus lowest METS-VF quartile was 5.97 (4.28-8.32), with a per 1-standard deviation increase in METS-VF positively associated with T2DM risk. Positive associations were also found in the sensitivity and subgroup analyses, respectively. A significant nonlinear dose–response association was observed between METS-VF and T2DM risk for all participants (Pnonlinearity = 0.0347). Finally, the AUC value of METS-VF for predicting T2DM was largest among six indices. The METS-VF may be a reliable and applicable predictor of T2DM incidence in Chinese people regardless of sex, age, or body mass index.
This paper studies the optimal allocation policy of a coherent system with independent heterogeneous components and dependent subsystems, the systems are assumed to consist of two groups of components whose lifetimes follow proportional hazard (PH) or proportional reversed hazard (PRH) models. We investigate the optimal allocation strategy by finding out the number $k$ of components coming from Group A in the up-series system. First, some sufficient conditions are provided in the sense of the usual stochastic order to compare the lifetimes of two-parallel–series systems with dependent subsystems, and we obtain the hazard rate and reversed hazard rate orders when two subsystems have independent lifetimes. Second, similar results are also obtained for two-series–parallel systems under certain conditions. Finally, we generalize the corresponding results to parallel–series and series–parallel systems with multiple subsystems in the viewpoint of the minimal path and the minimal cut sets, respectively. Some numerical examples are presented to illustrate the theoretical findings.
High dietary fiber intake has been associated with a lower risk of diabetes, but the association of dietary fiber with prediabetes is only speculative, especially in China, where the supportive data from prospective studies is lacking. This study aimed to examine the association between dietary fiber intake and risk of incident prediabetes among Chinese adults. We performed a prospective analysis in 18,085 participants of the TCLSIH cohort study who were free of diabetes, prediabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease at baseline. Dietary data were collected using a validated 100-item food frequency questionnaire. Prediabetes was defined based on the American Diabetes Association diagnostic criteria. Cox proportional hazard models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs). During 63,175 person-years of follow-up, 4,139 cases of incident prediabetes occurred. The multivariable HRs (95% CIs) of prediabetes for the highest versus lowest quartiles were 0.85 (0.75, 0.98) (P for trend =0.02) for total dietary fiber, 0.84 (0.74, 0.95) (P for trend <0.01) for soluble fiber, and 1.05 (0.93, 1.19) (P for trend =0.38) for insoluble fiber. Fiber from fruits, but not from cereals, beans, and vegetables was inversely associated with prediabetes. Our results indicate that intakes of total dietary fiber, soluble fiber, and fiber derived from fruit sources were associated with a lower risk of prediabetes.
Hebei Province was affected by two coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak waves during the period 22 January 2020 through 27 February 2020 (wave 1) and 2 January 2021 through 14 February 2021 (wave 2). To evaluate and compare the epidemiological characteristics, containment delay, cluster events and social activity, as well as non-pharmaceutical interventions of the two COVID-19 outbreak waves, we examined real-time update information on all COVID-19-confirmed cases from a publicly available database. Wave 1 was closely linked with the COVID-19 pandemic in Wuhan, whereas wave 2 was triggered, to a certain extent, by the increasing social activities such as weddings, multi-household gatherings and church events during the slack agricultural period. In wave 2, the epidemic spread undetected in the rural areas, and people living in the rural areas had a higher incidence rate than those living in the urban areas (5.3 vs. 22.0 per 1 000 000). Furthermore, Rt was greater than 1 in the early stage of the two outbreak waves, and decreased substantially after massive non-pharmaceutical interventions were implemented. In China's ‘new-normal’ situation, development of targeted and effective intervention remains key for COVID-19 control in consideration of the potential threat of new coronavirus strains.
In December 2019, an outbreak of an unknown cause of pneumonia [later named coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)] occurred in Wuhan, China. This was found to be attributed to a novel coronavirus of zoonotic origin, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2; previously named 2019 novel coronavirus or 2019-nCoV). The SARS-CoV-2, a new type of highly pathogenic human coronavirus related to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV), spread rapidly worldwide and caused 53,164,803 confirmed infections, including 1,300,576 deaths, by November 13, 2020 (globally, 206,196,367 cases and 4,345,424 deaths as of August 13, 2021). SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV vary in their specific characteristics, regarding epidemics and pathogenesis. This article focuses on the comparison of the virology, epidemiology, and clinical features of SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2 to reveal their common and distinct properties, to provide an up-to-date resource for the development of advanced systems and strategies to monitor and control future epidemics of highly pathogenic human coronaviruses.
Cytochrome P450 monooxygenases play a key role in pest resistance to insecticides by detoxification. Four new P450 genes, CYP6AS160, CYP6AS161, CYP4AB73 and CYP4G232 were identified from Solenopsis invicta. CYP6AS160 was highly expressed in the abdomen and its expression could be induced significantly with exposure to fipronil, whereas CYP4AB73 was not highly expressed in the abdomen and its expression could not be significantly induced following exposure to fipronil. Expression levels of CYP6AS160 and CYP4AB73 in workers were significantly higher than that in queens. RNA interference-mediated gene silencing by feeding on double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) found that the levels of this transcript decreased (by maximum to 64.6%) when they fed on CYP6AS160-specific dsRNA. Workers fed dsCYP6AS160 had significantly higher mortality after 24 h of exposure to fipronil compared to controls. Workers fed dsCYP6AS160 had reduced total P450 activity of microsomal preparations toward model substrates p-nitroanisole. However, the knockdown of a non-overexpressed P450 gene, CYP4AB73 did not lead to an increase of mortality or a decrease of total P450 activity. The knockdown effects of CYP6AS160 on worker susceptibility to fipronil, combined with our other findings, indicate that CYP6AS160 is responsible for detoxification of fipronil. Feeding insects dsRNA may be a general strategy to trigger RNA interference and may find applications in entomological research and in the control of insect pests in the field.
The aim of the present study was to compare the rate of preterm birth (PTB) and growth from birth to 18 years between twins conceived by in vitro fertilization (IVF) and twins conceived by spontaneous conception (SC) in mainland China. The retrospective cohort study included 1164 twins resulting from IVF and 25,654 twins conceived spontaneously, of which 494 from IVF and 6338 from SC were opposite-sex twins. PTB and low birth weight (LBW), and growth, including length/height and weight, were compared between the two groups at five stages: infancy (0 year), toddler period (1–2 years), preschool (3–5 years), primary or elementary school (6–11 years), and adolescence (10–18 years). Few statistically significant differences were found for LBW and growth between the two groups after adjusting for PTB and other confounders. Twins born by IVF faced an increased risk of PTB compared with those born by SC (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 8.21, 95% confidence interval [CI] [3.19, 21.13], p < .001 in all twins and aOR 10.12, 95% CI [2.32, 44.04], p = .002 in opposite-sex twins). Twins born by IVF experienced a similar growth at five stages (0–18 years old) when compared with those born by SC. PTB risk, however, is significantly higher for twins conceived by IVF than those conceived by SC.
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a clinically and biologically heterogeneous syndrome. Identifying discrete subtypes of illness with distinguishing neurobiological substrates and clinical features is a promising strategy for guiding personalised therapeutics.
This study aimed to identify depression subtypes with correlated patterns of functional network connectivity and clinical symptoms by clustering patients according to a weighted linear combination of both features in a relatively large, medication-naïve depression sample.
We recruited 115 medication-naïve adults with MDD and 129 matched healthy controls, and evaluated all participants with magnetic resonance imaging. We used regularised canonical correlation analysis to identify component mapping relationships between functional network connectivity and symptom profiles, and K-means clustering was used to define distinct subtypes of patients.
Two subtypes of MDD were identified: insomnia-dominated subtype 1 and anhedonia-dominated subtype 2. Subtype 1 was characterised by abnormal hyperconnectivity within the ventral attention network and sleep maintenance insomnia. Subtype 2 was characterised by abnormal hypoconnectivity in the subcortical and dorsal attention networks, and prominent anhedonia symptoms.
Our study identified two distinct subtypes of patients with specific neurobiological and clinical symptom profiles. These findings advance understanding of the biological and clinical heterogeneity of MDD, offering a pathway for defining categorical subtypes of illness via consideration of both biological and clinical features.
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.
To improve the ability of avian radar to process bird information, a statistical analysis method for the bird situation around airport is proposed based on avian radar data. By accumulating a large amount of avian radar data, hotspots of the activity area of bird targets can be determined and taken as a reference point to realise lifecycle management of each bird target from initiation to continuation and finally death. In the process of target tracking, combined with the particle filter method, the probability of several possible events is estimated, leading to completion of the data association and real-time statistics for the number of targets. The simulation results reveal that this method is superior to the traditional logic method regarding the timeliness of multi-target initiation. With the application of the proposed method to avian radar data, the bird population and its basic activity rules can be discovered by fixing the bird habitats around the airport.
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.
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.
Archaeological research demonstrates that an agropastoral economy was established in Tibet during the second millennium BC, aided by the cultivation of barley introduced from South-western Asia. The exact cultural contexts of the emergence and development of agropastoralism in Tibet, however, remain obscure. Recent excavations at the site of Bangga provide new evidence for settled agropastoralism in central Tibet, demonstrating a material divergence from earlier archaeological cultures, possibly corresponding to the intensification of agropastoralism in the first millennium BC. The authors’ results depict a more dynamic system of subsistence in the first millennium BC, as the populations moved readily between distinct economic modes and combined them in a variety of innovative ways.
Salicylic acid (SA), a phytohormone, has been considered to be a key regulator mediating plant defence against pathogens. It is still vague how SA activates plant defence against herbivores such as chewing and sucking pests. Here, we used an aphid-susceptible wheat variety to investigate Sitobion avenae response to SA-induced wheat plants, and the effects of exogenous SA on some defence enzymes and phenolics in the plant immune system. In SA-treated wheat seedlings, intrinsic rate of natural increase (rm), fecundity and apterous rate of S. avenae were 0.25, 31.4 nymphs/female and 64.4%, respectively, and significantly lower than that in the controls (P < 0.05). Moreover, the increased activities of phenylalanine-ammonia-lyase, polyphenol oxidase (PPO) and peroxidase in the SA-induced seedlings obviously depended on the sampling time, whereas activities of catalase and 4-coumarate:CoA ligase were suppressed significantly at 24, 48 and 72 h in comparison with the control. Dynamic levels of p-coumaric acid at 96 h, caffeic acid at 24 and 72 h and chlorogenic acid at 24, 48 and 96 h in wheat plants were significantly upregulated by exogenous SA application. Nevertheless, only caffeic acid content was positively correlated with PPO activity in SA-treated wheat seedlings (P = 0.031). These findings indicate that exogenous SA significantly enhanced the defence of aphid-susceptible wheat variety against aphids by regulating the plant immune system, and may prove a potential application of SA in aphid control.
Since the 1980s the concept of “lean production” has attracted much attention and sparked off considerable debate among social scientists on work and workplace restructuring. On the one hand, the MIT researchers, who coined and popularized the term lean production, have vaunted lean production as representing a fundamental, progressive break with Taylorism and Fordism that will lead to a more fulfilling workplace and empower workers (Womack, et al. 1990). On the other hand, critics have contended that rather than representing a qualitative break with the Fordist regime, lean production is essentially a modified form of Taylorism and Fordism (albeit leaner and more flexible) because assembly line, standardization, volume production, and capacity utilization remain central to the lean production paradigm (Berggren 1993; Babson 1995: 14; Price 1995). Ethnographic studies of the impact of lean on workers cast a more skeptical view on the “empowerment” claim, as researchers find lean production is often associated with the intensification of work and greater managerial control, without real empowerment of workers (Graham 1995; Parker and Slaughter 1995; Mehri 2005, 2006). With respect to its implementation, contrary to the claim of MIT researchers that the principles of lean production are “applicable anywhere by anyone” (Womack et al. 1990: 7), cross-national comparisons have shown wide variations as well as limits in the adoption of lean production in different national and local contexts (Kochan et al. 1997; Jürgens and Krzywdzinski 2016). While there has been growing interest in the spread and implementation of lean production in China, most of the existing literature has focused on the problems and effectiveness in implementing lean production by Chinese manufacturers from the perspectives of management and business consultancy (see, among others, Taj 2008; Chen and Meng 2010). To date we know relatively little about how lean production has affected the workplace and workers in the Chinese context.1
Calcification within breast cancer is a diagnostically significant radiological feature that generally consists of hydroxylapatite. Samples from 30 cases of breast carcinoma with calcification were investigated using optical microscopy, energy-dispersive X-ray analysis, transmission-electron microscopy, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, synchrotron radiation X-ray diffraction and X-ray fluorescence. Under optical microscopy, the calcifications were found to consist of either irregular aggregates with widths > 200 μm or spherical aggregates similar to psammoma bodies with an average diameter of 30 μm. Transmission-electron microscopy showed that short columnar or dumbbell-shaped crystals with widths of 10–15 nm and lengths of 20–50 nm were the most common morphology; spherical aggregates (~1 μm in diameter) with amorphous coatings of fibrous nanocrystals were also observed. Results indicated that hydroxylapatite was the dominant mineral phase in the calcifications, and both CO32– and cation substitutions (Na, Mg, Zn, Fe, Sr, Cu and Mn) were present in the hydroxylapatite structure. Fourier-transform infrared spectra show peaks at 872 and 880 cm–1 indicating that CO32– substituted both the OH– (A type) and PO43– (B type) sites of hydroxylapatite, making it an A and B mixed type. The ratio of B- to A-type substitution was estimated in the range of 1.1–18.7 from the ratio of peak intensities (I872/I880), accompanied with CO32– contents from 1.1% to 14.5%. Trace arsenic, detected in situ by synchrotron radiation X-ray fluorescence was found to be distributed uniformly in the calcifications in the form of AsO43– substituting for PO43–. It is therefore proposed that identifying these trace elements in breast cancer calcifications may be promising for future clinical diagnostics.