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Previous studies have revealed associations of meteorological factors with tuberculosis (TB) cases. However, few studies have examined their lag effects on TB cases. This study was aimed to analyse nonlinear lag effects of meteorological factors on the number of TB notifications in Hong Kong. Using a 22-year consecutive surveillance data in Hong Kong, we examined the association of monthly average temperature and relative humidity with temporal dynamics of the monthly number of TB notifications using a distributed lag nonlinear models combined with a Poisson regression. The relative risks (RRs) of TB notifications were >1.15 as monthly average temperatures were between 16.3 and 17.3 °C at lagged 13–15 months, reaching the peak risk of 1.18 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.02–1.35) when it was 16.8 °C at lagged 14 months. The RRs of TB notifications were >1.05 as relative humidities of 60.0–63.6% at lagged 9–11 months expanded to 68.0–71.0% at lagged 12–17 months, reaching the highest risk of 1.06 (95% CI 1.01–1.11) when it was 69.0% at lagged 13 months. The nonlinear and delayed effects of average temperature and relative humidity on TB epidemic were identified, which may provide a practical reference for improving the TB warning system.
An acute gastroenteritis (AGE) outbreak caused by a norovirus occurred at a hospital in Shanghai, China, was studied for molecular epidemiology, host susceptibility and serological roles. Rectal and environmental swabs, paired serum samples and saliva specimens were collected. Pathogens were detected by real-time polymerase chain reaction and DNA sequencing. Histo-blood group antigens (HBGA) phenotypes of saliva samples and their binding to norovirus protruding proteins were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The HBGA-binding interfaces and the surrounding region were analysed by the MegAlign program of DNAstar 7.1. Twenty-seven individuals in two care units were attacked with AGE at attack rates of 9.02 and 11.68%. Eighteen (78.2%) symptomatic and five (38.4%) asymptomatic individuals were GII.6/b norovirus positive. Saliva-based HBGA phenotyping showed that all symptomatic and asymptomatic cases belonged to A, B, AB or O secretors. Only four (16.7%) out of the 24 tested serum samples showed low blockade activity against HBGA-norovirus binding at the acute phase, whereas 11 (45.8%) samples at the convalescence stage showed seroconversion of such blockade. Specific blockade antibody in the population played an essential role in this norovirus epidemic. A wide HBGA-binding spectrum of GII.6 supports a need for continuous health attention and surveillance in different settings.
In order to maximize the utility of future studies of trilobite ontogeny, we propose a set of standard practices that relate to the collection, nomenclature, description, depiction, and interpretation of ontogenetic series inferred from articulated specimens belonging to individual species. In some cases, these suggestions may also apply to ontogenetic studies of other fossilized taxa.
Ecosystems across the globe are vulnerable to the effects of climate change, as are the communities that depend on them. However, ecosystems can also protect people from climate change impacts. As the evidence base strengthens, nature-based solutions (NbS) are increasingly prominent in climate change policy, especially in developing nations. Yet intentions rarely translate into measurable, evidence-based targets. As Paris Agreement signatories revise their Nationally Determined Contributions, we argue that NbS are key to meeting global goals for climate and biodiversity, and we urge researchers to work more closely with policy-makers to identify targets that benefit both people and ecosystems.
Chinese men who have sex with men (MSM) are at high risk for depression, anxiety and suicide. The estimated prevalence of these problems is essential to guide public health policy, but published results vary. This meta-analysis aimed to estimate the prevalence of depressive symptoms, anxiety symptoms and suicide among Chinese MSM.
Systematic searches of EMBASE, MEDLINE, PsycINFO, PubMed, CNKI and Wanfang databases with languages restricted to Chinese and English for studies published before 10 September 2019 on the prevalence of depressive symptoms, anxiety symptoms, suicidal ideation, suicide plans and suicide attempts among Chinese MSM. Studies that were published in the peer-reviewed journals and used validated instruments to assess depression and anxiety were included. The characteristics of studies and the prevalence of depression and anxiety symptoms, suicidal ideation, suicide plans and suicide attempts were independently extracted by authors. Random-effects modelling was used to estimate the pooled rates. Subgroup analysis and univariate meta-regression were conducted to explore potential sources of heterogeneity. This study followed the PRISMA and MOOSE.
Sixty-seven studies were included. Fifty-two studies reported the prevalence of depressive symptoms, with a combined sample of 37 376 people, of whom 12 887 [43.2%; 95% confidence interval (CI), 38.9–47.5] reported depressive symptoms. Twenty-seven studies reported the prevalence of anxiety symptoms, with a combined sample of 10 531 people, of whom 3187 (32.2%; 95% CI, 28.3–36.6) reported anxiety symptoms. Twenty-three studies reported the prevalence of suicidal ideation, with a combined sample of 15 034 people, of whom 3416 (21.2%; 95% CI, 18.3–24.5) had suicidal ideation. Nine studies reported the prevalence of suicide plans, with a combined sample of 5271 people, of whom 401 (6.2%; 95% CI, 3.9–8.6) had suicide plans. Finally, 19 studies reported the prevalence of suicide attempts, with a combined sample of 27 936 people, of whom 1829 (7.3%; 95% CI, 5.6–9.0) had attempted suicide.
The mental health of Chinese MSM is poor compared with the general population. Efforts are warranted to develop interventions to prevent and alleviate mental health problems among this vulnerable population.
The aim of our study was twofold: to examine (a) whether the link between racial discrimination and adjustment showed age-related changes across early to late adolescence for Chinese-heritage youth and (b) whether the age-related associations of the discrimination–adjustment link differed by gender, nativity, and geographical region. We pooled two independently collected longitudinal data sets in the United States and Canada (N = 498, ages 12–19 at Wave 1) and used time-varying effect modeling to show that discrimination is consistently associated with poorer adjustment across all ages. These associations were stronger at certain ages, but for males and females, first- and second-generation adolescents, and US and Canadian adolescents they differed. There were stronger relations between discrimination and adjustment in early adolescence for males compared to females, in middle adolescence for first-generation compared to second-generation adolescents, and in early adolescence for US adolescents compared to Canadian adolescents. In general, negative implications for adjustment associated with discrimination diminished across the span of adolescence for females, second-generation, and US and Canadian adolescents, but not for males or first-generation adolescents. The results show that the discrimination–adjustment link must be considered with regard to age, gender, nativity, and region, and that attention to discrimination in early adolescence may be especially important.
The role that vitamin D plays in pulmonary function remains uncertain. Epidemiological studies reported mixed findings for serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D)–pulmonary function association. We conducted the largest cross-sectional meta-analysis of the 25(OH)D–pulmonary function association to date, based on nine European ancestry (EA) cohorts (n 22 838) and five African ancestry (AA) cohorts (n 4290) in the Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology Consortium. Data were analysed using linear models by cohort and ancestry. Effect modification by smoking status (current/former/never) was tested. Results were combined using fixed-effects meta-analysis. Mean serum 25(OH)D was 68 (sd 29) nmol/l for EA and 49 (sd 21) nmol/l for AA. For each 1 nmol/l higher 25(OH)D, forced expiratory volume in the 1st second (FEV1) was higher by 1·1 ml in EA (95 % CI 0·9, 1·3; P<0·0001) and 1·8 ml (95 % CI 1·1, 2·5; P<0·0001) in AA (Prace difference=0·06), and forced vital capacity (FVC) was higher by 1·3 ml in EA (95 % CI 1·0, 1·6; P<0·0001) and 1·5 ml (95 % CI 0·8, 2·3; P=0·0001) in AA (Prace difference=0·56). Among EA, the 25(OH)D–FVC association was stronger in smokers: per 1 nmol/l higher 25(OH)D, FVC was higher by 1·7 ml (95 % CI 1·1, 2·3) for current smokers and 1·7 ml (95 % CI 1·2, 2·1) for former smokers, compared with 0·8 ml (95 % CI 0·4, 1·2) for never smokers. In summary, the 25(OH)D associations with FEV1 and FVC were positive in both ancestries. In EA, a stronger association was observed for smokers compared with never smokers, which supports the importance of vitamin D in vulnerable populations.
The development of laser wakefield accelerators (LWFA) over the past several years has led to an interest in very compact sources of X-ray radiation – such as “table-top” free electron lasers. However, the use of conventional undulators using permanent magnets also implies system sizes which are large. In this work, we assess the possibilities for the use of novel mini-undulators in conjunction with a LWFA so that the dimensions of the undulator become comparable with the acceleration distances for LWFA experiments (i.e., centimeters). The use of a prototype undulator using laser machining of permanent magnets for this application is described and the emission characteristics and limitations of such a system are determined. Preliminary electron propagation and X-ray emission measurements are taken with a LWFA electron beam at the University of Michigan.
Good canopy structure is essential for optimal maize (Zea mays L.) production. However, creating appropriate maize canopy structure can be difficult, because the characteristics of individual plants are altered by changes in plant age, density and interactions with neighbouring plants. The objective of the current study was to find a reliable method for building good maize canopy structure by analysing changes in canopy structure, light distribution and grain yield (GY). A modern maize cultivar (ZhengDan958) was planted at 12 densities ranging from 1.5 to 18 plants/m2 at two field locations in Xinjiang, China. At the silking stage (R1), plant and ear height increased with plant density as well as leaf area index (LAI), whereas leaf area per plant decreased logarithmically. The fraction of light intercepted by the plant (F) increased with increasing plant density, but the light extinction coefficient (K) decreased linearly from 0.61 to 0.39. Taking the optimum value of F (95%) as an example, and using measured values of K for each plant density at R1 and the equation from Beer's law, the corresponding (theoretical) LAI for each plant density was calculated and optimum plant density (9.72 plants/m2) obtained by calculating the difference between theoretical LAIs and actual observations. Further analysis showed that plant density ranging from 10.64 to 11.55 plants/m2 yielded a stable GY range. Therefore, taking into account the persistence time for maximum LAI, the plant density required to obtain an ideal GY maize canopy structure should be increased by 10–18% from 9.72 plants/m2.
Introduction: The increased availability and increased utilization of Computed Tomography (CT) imaging as a diagnostic tool has in the past several years led to concerns regarding the unknown and potentially harmful effects of ionizing radiation exposure to patients, as well as the increased cost to the health care system. Multiple education campaigns (e.g. Choosing Wisely) and institution-wide interventions have been implemented in order to limit the use of potentially unnecessary CT imaging. Two specific modalities CT head and CT angiography to rule out pulmonary embolism (CT PE) have been identified as potential targets of these interventions due to their likely overutilization in the clinical ED setting. The objective of this study was to determine the interphysician variability in the ordering rates of CT head and CT PE, and to determine if any correlation existed between CT head and CT PE ordering rates among physicians. Methods: Data was collected on all diagnostic imaging ordered by ED physicians at two very high volume community hospitals during the 4-year period between 2013 and 2016. Analysis was limited to those physicians who worked at least 3 of the 4 years at either site and saw at least 1000 patients per year. The ordering rates for each physician were calculated by dividing the number of the imaging modality ordered over the total number of patients seen. Correlation coefficients (r values) were calculated to determine if a linear correlation existed between increased CT head and increased CT PE ordering rates. Results: The DI ordering data for a total of 44 ED physicians were analyzed. Results show average 4-year ordering rates for CT heads among ED physicians ranging from 4.0% to 13.9%, and CT PE ordering rates ranging from 0.1% - 1.7%. The correlation coefficient between CT head and CT PE ordering rates was positive for all 4 years, with a statistically significant (p<0.05) correlation coefficient of 0.53. Conclusion: There is a wide degree of variability in DI ordering patterns among physicians working within the same clinical environment. Further exploration of this interphysician variability will be helpful in designing strategies to mitigate overutilization of diagnostic imaging.
J. Hou, European Patent Office Munich,
G. Kramer, Chair of Communications Engineering, Technische Universität München,
M. Bloch, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology
Background: Effects of stroke at the cellular and sub-cellular level remain poorly understood by conventional techniques. We use synchrotron-based imaging techniques to study elemental and biochemical changes in the infarct and penumbra after stroke in an experimental model. Methods: Ischemic stroke is induced in mice using the previously validated photothrombotic model. Animals are sacrificed at various time-points after stroke. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopic imaging (FTIRI) is used to gather sub-cellular (<1 µm spatial resolution) imaging data of lipid oxidation and protein aggregation in the areas of interest. X-ray fluorescence (XRF) imaging is used to image the distribution of bio-important elements at the cellular and sub-cellular spatial resolutions. Routine histology and immunohistochemistry are used to co-localize cell-types to areas of interest. Results: Preliminary XRF results indicate significant reduction in the concentration of multiple elements in the infarct, compared to the penumbra, at day 1 post-stroke. Some elements begin to return to normal concentration in the penumbra at day 3. FTIRI data shows that lipid and total protein levels decrease, while aggregate protein levels increase in the penumbra. Conclusions: Multi-modality synchrotron imaging can be used to map elements as well as bio-molecules in a stroke model. A better understanding of these changes can guide therapeutic interventions after stroke.
In order to avoid excess feed consumption during the force-feeding period in foie gras production, a dose-response experiment with seven feed consumption levels (450, 540, 630, 720, 810, 900, 990 g/day per bird) was conducted to evaluate the effects of feed consumption levels on growth performance and carcass composition of male Mule ducks from 91 to 102 days of age. One-day-old Mule ducklings (sterile and artificial hybrid of male Albatre Muscovy duck and female Pekin duck were fed a two-phase commercial diets for ad libitum intake from hatching to 91 days of age, followed by graded feeding levels of a corn diet by force-feeding from 91 to 102 days of age. Fifty-six 91-day-old male Mule ducks with similar BW were randomly assigned to seven treatments, with eight birds per treatment. Birds were housed in individual pens. At 102 days of age, final BW was measured and BW gain and feed conversion ratio of ducks from each treatment were calculated from day 91 to 102, and then all ducks were slaughtered to evaluate the yields of skin with subcutaneous fat, abdominal fat, breast meat (including pectoralis major and pectoralis minor), leg meat (including thigh and drum stick), and liver. Significant differences in BW gain, total liver weight and liver relative weight were observed among the treatments (P<0.001). According to the broken-line regression analysis, the optimal feed consumption levels of male Mule ducks from 91 to 102 days of age for maximum BW gain, total liver weight and liver relative weight were 217, 227 and 216 g feed/kg BW0.75·per day, respectively.
The transient, growth and nonlinear saturation stages in the evolution of the electrostatic two-stream instabilities as described by the Vlasov–Poisson system are reconsidered by numerically following the evolution of the total wave energy of the plasma oscillations excited from (numerical) noise. Except for peculiarities related to the necessarily finite (even though very small) magnitude of the perturbations in the numerical simulation, the existence and initial growth properties of the instabilities from the numerical results are found to be consistent with those from linear normal mode analysis and the Penrose criteria. However, contradictory to the traditional point of view, the growth of instability before saturation is not always linear. The initial stage of the growth can exhibit fine structures that can be attributed to the harmonics of the excited plasma oscillations, whose wavelengths are determined by the system size and the numerical noise. As expected, saturation of the unstable oscillations is due to electron trapping when they reach sufficiently large amplitudes.
In this work, we present a set of M-type star candidates selected from the LAMOST DR1. A discrimination method with the spectral index diagram is used to separate M giants and M dwarfs. Then, we have successfully assembled a set of M giants templates from M0 to M6, using the spectra identified from the LAMOST spectral database. After combining the M dwarf templates in Zhong et al. (2015a) and the new created M giant templates, we use the M-type spectral library to perform the template-fit method to classify and identify M-type stars in the LAMOST DR1. A catalog of M-type star candidates including 8639 M giants and 101690 M dwarfs/subdwarfs is provided. As an additional results, we also present other fundamental parameters like proper motion, photometry, radial velocity and spectroscopic distance.