To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure email@example.com
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
In this study, we examine whether strategic voting – in which a voter seeks to maximize the expected payoff from casting a ballot – occurred among late voters in the 2018 Taipei City mayoral election. This multi-candidate mayoral contest was noteworthy because ballot-counting started before all the votes had been cast, with preliminary results being leaked to the media. Theoretically, having access to real-time updates of voting figures could have influenced the decision of voters who were still in line waiting to cast their ballots. Analysis and reconstruction of aggregate polling data, however, demonstrate that there was very little (if any) strategic voting among these late voters on election day, even if they had information that might have induced them to vote strategically.
Echinococcus granulosus sensu lato has complex defence mechanisms that protect it from the anti-parasitic immune response for long periods. Echinococcus granulosus cyst fluid (EgCF) is involved in the immune escape. Nevertheless, whether and how EgCF modulates the inflammatory response in macrophages remains poorly understood. Here, real-time polymerase chain reaction and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay revealed that EgCF could markedly attenuate the lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced production of pro-inflammatory factors including tumour necrosis factor-α, interleukin (IL)-12 and IL-6 but increase the expression of IL-10 at mRNA and protein levels in mouse peritoneal macrophages and RAW 264.7 cells. Mechanically, western blotting and immunofluorescence assay showed that EgCF abolished the activation of nuclear factor (NF)-κB p65, p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) and ERK1/2 signalling pathways by LPS stimulation in mouse macrophages. EgCF's anti-inflammatory role was at least partly contributed by promoting proteasomal degradation of the critical adaptor TRAF6. Moreover, the EgCF-promoted anti-inflammatory response and TRAF6 proteasomal degradation were conserved in human THP-1 macrophages. These findings collectively reveal a novel mechanism by which EgCF suppresses inflammatory responses by inhibiting TRAF6 and the downstream activation of NF-κB and MAPK signalling in both human and mouse macrophages, providing new insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying the E. granulosus-induced immune evasion.
Echinococcus shiquicus is currently limited to the Qinghai–Tibet plateau, a large mountainous region in China. Although the zoonotic potential remains unknown, progress is being made on the distribution and intermediate host range. In this study, we report E. shiquicus within Gansu and Qinghai provinces in regions located not only around the central areas but also the southeast edge of the plateau and describe their genetic relationship with previous isolates from the plateau. From 1879 plateau pikas examined, 2.39% (95% CI 1.79–3.18) were infected with E. shiquicus. The highest prevalence of 10.26% (4.06–23.58) was recorded in Makehe town, Qinghai province. Overall the prevalence was marginally higher in Qinghai (2.5%, CI 1.82–3.43) than in Gansu (2%, CI 1.02–3.89). The cox1 and nad1 genes demonstrated high and low haplotype and nucleotide diversities, respectively. The median-joining network constructed by the cox1–nad1 gene sequences demonstrated a star-like configuration with a median vector (unsampled haplotype) occupying the centre of the network. No peculiar distinction or common haplotype was observed in isolates originating from the different provinces. The presence of E. shiquicus in regions of the southeast and northeast edges of the Qinghai–Tibet plateau and high genetic variation warrants more investigation into the haplotype distribution and genetic polymorphism by exploring more informative DNA regions of the mitochondrial genome to provide epidemiologically useful insight into the population structure of E. shiquicus across the plateau and its axis.
A southern population (S) from Xiushui County (29°1′N, 114°4′E) and a northern population (N) from Shenyang city (41°48′N, 123°23′E) of the cabbage beetle, Colaphellus bowringi vary greatly in their life-history traits, and may serve as an excellent model with which to study the inheritance of life-history traits. In the present study, we performed intraspecific hybridization using the two populations, comparing the key life-history traits (fecundity, development time, body weight, growth rate, and sexual size dimorphism (SDD)) between the two populations (S♀ × S♂ and N♀ × N♂) and their two hybrid populations (S♀ × N♂ and N♀ × S♂ populations) at 19, 22, 25, and 28°C. Our results showed that there were significant differences in life-history traits between the two parental populations, with the S population having a significantly higher fecundity, shorter larval development time, larger body weight, higher growth rate, and greater weight loss during metamorphosis than the N population at almost all temperatures. However, these life-history traits in the two hybrid populations were intermediate between those of their parents. The life-history traits in the S × N and N × S populations more closely resembled those of the maternal S population and N population, respectively, showing maternal effects. Weight loss for both sexes was highest in the S population, followed by the S × N, N × S, and N populations at all temperatures, suggesting that larger pupae lost more weight during metamorphosis. The changes in SSD with temperature were similar between the S and the S × N populations and between the N and the N × S populations, also suggesting a maternal effect. Overall, our results showed no drastic effect of hybridization on C. bowringi, being neither negative (hybrid inferiority) nor positive (heterosis). Rather, the phenotypes of hybrids were intermediate between the phenotypes of their parents.
The microstructure and texture evolution of Ni-5 at%W (Ni5W) alloy substrates were investigated by in situ tensile testing along the rolling direction (RD), transverse direction (TD), and at 45° to the RD (45°-RD), as well as by electron backscatter diffraction characterization. The tensile stress direction had a significant influence on the texture evolution. The cubic texture in the Ni-5 at%W alloy exhibited severe degradation when the tensile angle was 45°-RD. In contrast, the cubic texture was relatively stable under high deformation along the RD or TD. It was found that the slip line system in the 45°-RD specimen was the key to the contrasting behavior. The effect of the tensile testing angle on the cubic texture evolution for Ni–W substrates was investigated, and the corresponding effect on the superconducting properties of coated materials was studied.
A study was conducted to identify whether composted manure and straw amendments (replacement of a portion of chemical fertilizer [50% of the total nitrogen application] with composted pig manure, and straw return [all straw from the previous rice crop] combined with chemical fertilizer) compared with no fertilization and chemical fertilizer only would change the dominant species of wheat-associated weeds as well as influence their growth and seed yield in a rice (Oryza sativa L.)–wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) rotation system. The study was initiated in 2010, and the treatment effects on the species, density, plant height, shoot biomass, seed yield of dominant weeds, and wheat yields were assessed in 2017 and 2018. Fertilization significantly increased the height, density, and yield of wheat, as well as the shoot biomass of wheat-associated weeds, but decreased the weed species number. A total of 17 and 14 weed species were recorded in the experimental wheat fields in 2017 and 2018, respectively. The most dominant weed species were American sloughgrass [Beckmannia syzigachne (Steud.) Fernald] and catchweed bedstraw (Galium aparine L.), which made up more than 64% of the weed community in all treatments. When the chemical fertilizer application was amended with pig manure compost and straw return, the relative abundance of B. syzigachne significantly decreased, while the relative abundance of G. aparine significantly increased. The application of the chemical fertilizer-only treatment resulted in increases in the density, shoot biomass, and seed yield of B. syzigachne, while the composted manure and straw amendments applied together with chemical fertilizer led to significant increases in the density, shoot biomass, and seed yield of G. aparine. Consequently, further research on ways to promote greater cropping system diversity will be needed to prevent the selection of weed species that are adapted to a limited suite of crop management practices.
Kawasaki disease is a type of acute febrile rash disease that is common in children and is characterised by primary lesions of systemic middle and small vasculitis, which can lead to coronary artery lesions. Manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD), one of the most important antioxidases in the human body, plays a key role in maintaining the balance of free radicals in the human body. Two single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPS) (rs4880 and rs5746136) in the MnSOD gene were related to oxidative stress disease. The purpose of this study is to explore the possible relationship between MnSOD gene polymorphisms and Kawasaki disease susceptibility.
This study included 100 Kawasaki disease children and 102 healthy children. Two single-nucleotide polymorphisms (rs4880 and rs5746136) were detected by polymerase chain reaction sequence-based typing.
There was a significant difference in both the genotype frequency (χ2 = 10.805, p = 0.005) and the allele frequency (χ2 = 7.948, p = 0.005) of rs5746136 between the Kawasaki disease group and the control group. Children with the A allele had a 0.558 times lower risk of Kawasaki disease than those without the A allele (χ2 = 7.948, p = 0.005, odds ratio = 0.558, 95% confidence interval = 0.371–0.838). There was no significant difference in the genotype and gene frequencies of rs5746136 between the Kawasaki disease-coronary artery lesion and Kawasaki disease-without coronary artery lesion groups (p > 0.05), and there was no significant difference in the rs4880 genotype and allele frequencies between the Kawasaki disease and healthy control groups or between the Kawasaki disease-coronary artery lesion and Kawasaki disease-without coronary artery lesions groups (p > 0.05).
This study provides evidence supporting an association between MnSOD gene polymorphisms and susceptibility to Kawasaki disease. The genotype AA and the allele A of the MnSOD gene locus rs5746136 were risk factors for Kawasaki disease.
The effects of trace Ca and Sr addition on dynamic precipitates, dynamic recrystallization (DRX) behavior, and texture evolution of Mg–5Zn alloy sheets fabricated by high strain rate rolling (HSRR) were investigated by electron backscattered diffraction (EBSD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), and X-ray diffraction (XRD). The Zn-rich precipitates formed with plate shapes, short-rod shapes, and near-spherical shapes, indicating that the most important function of adding Ca and Sr is to promote the precipitation process. The precipitate density increases, but the precipitate size and DRX volume fraction decrease with the addition of the alloying elements. It is concluded that the effects of combined Ca/Sr addition on promoting precipitation and refining precipitate size are more effective than that of single Ca addition, and the reduction in DRX volume fraction can be attributed to the inhibition of fine precipitation on the nucleation and growth of DRX. Moreover, the macro-texture intensity is mainly related to DRX as the DRX grains are much more randomly oriented than deformed grains. In addition, the texture intensity in DRX regions is primarily associated with the precipitates, which can inhibit DRX grain rotation due to their pinning effect on the grain boundaries.
There is growing interest globally in using real-world data (RWD) and real-world evidence (RWE) for health technology assessment (HTA). Optimal collection, analysis, and use of RWD/RWE to inform HTA requires a conceptual framework to standardize processes and ensure consistency. However, such framework is currently lacking in Asia, a region that is likely to benefit from RWD/RWE for at least two reasons. First, there is often limited Asian representation in clinical trials unless specifically conducted in Asian populations, and RWD may help to fill the evidence gap. Second, in a few Asian health systems, reimbursement decisions are not made at market entry; thus, allowing RWD/RWE to be collected to give more certainty about the effectiveness of technologies in the local setting and inform their appropriate use. Furthermore, an alignment of RWD/RWE policies across Asia would equip decision makers with context-relevant evidence, and improve timely patient access to new technologies. Using data collected from eleven health systems in Asia, this paper provides a review of the current landscape of RWD/RWE in Asia to inform HTA and explores a way forward to align policies within the region. This paper concludes with a proposal to establish an international collaboration among academics and HTA agencies in the region: the REAL World Data In ASia for HEalth Technology Assessment in Reimbursement (REALISE) working group, which seeks to develop a non-binding guidance document on the use of RWD/RWE to inform HTA for decision making in Asia.
To investigate the cumulative effects of maternal supplementation with nucleotides in the form of uridine (UR) on fatty acid and amino acid constituents of neonatal piglets, fifty-two sows in late gestation were assigned randomly into the control (CON) group (fed a basal diet) or UR group (fed a basal diet with 150 g/t UR). Samples of neonates were collected during farrowing. Results showed that supplementing with UR in sows’ diet significantly decreased the birth mortality of pigs (P = 0·05), and increased serum total cholesterol, HDL and LDL of neonatal piglets (P < 0·05). Moreover, the amino acid profile of serum and liver of neonatal piglets was affected by the addition of UR in sows’ diets (P < 0·05). Furthermore, an up-regulation of mRNA expression of energy metabolism-related genes, including fatty acid elongase 5, fatty acid desaturase 1, hormone-sensitive lipase and cholesterol-7a-hydroxylase, was observed in the liver of neonates from the UR group. Additionally, a decrease in placental gene expression of excitatory amino acid transporters 2, excitatory amino acid transporter 3 and neutral AA transporter 1 in the UR group was concurrently observed (P < 0·05), and higher protein expression of phosphorylated protein kinase B, raptor, PPARα and PPARγ in placenta from the UR group was also observed (P < 0·05). Together, these results showed that maternal UR supplementation could regulate placental nutrient transport, largely in response to an alteration of mTORC1–PPAR signalling, thus regulating the nutrition metabolism of neonatal piglets and improving reproductive performance.
This study presents a simple switched-band impedance transformer using microstrip lines. The proposed circuit is suitable for loads with frequency-dependent complex impedances at two arbitrary operating frequencies. The transformer comprises two cascaded microstrip lines and two detachable shunt stepped-impedance stubs, which are separately connected to the main line via switching diodes such that provide good matching at one of the two operating frequencies and suppress unwanted signal at the other frequencies. The structure contains several user-set parameters such that designers can create a smaller circuit. The circuit parameters, except the user-set ones, are obtained using the derived design formula. The numerical simulations and experimental results agree well such that validate the proposed structure and the design formula.
The present study investigated the association between fibre degradation and the concentration of dissolved molecular hydrogen (H2) in the rumen. Napier grass (NG) silage and corn stover (CS) silage were compared as forages with contrasting structures and degradation patterns. In the first experiment, CS silage had greater 48-h DM, neutral-detergent fibre (NDF) and acid-detergent fibre degradation, and total gas and methane (CH4) volumes, and lower 48-h H2 volume than NG silage in 48-h in vitro incubations. In the second experiment, twenty-four growing beef bulls were fed diets including 55 % (DM basis) NG or CS silages. Bulls fed the CS diet had greater DM intake (DMI), average daily gain, total-tract digestibility of OM and NDF, ruminal dissolved methane (dCH4) concentration and gene copies of protozoa, methanogens, Ruminococcus albus and R. flavefaciens, and had lower ruminal dH2 concentration, and molar proportions of valerate and isovalerate, in comparison with those fed the NG diet. There was a negative correlation between dH2 concentration and NDF digestibility in bulls fed the CS diet, and a lack of relationship between dH2 concentration and NDF digestibility with the NG diet. In summary, the fibre of CS silage was more easily degraded by rumen microorganisms than that of NG silage. Increased dCH4 concentration with the CS diet presumably led to the decreased ruminal dH2 concentration, which may be helpful for fibre degradation and growth of fibrolytic micro-organisms in the rumen.
To investigate the effects of dietary fibre on follicular atresia in pigs fed a high-fat diet, we fed thirty-two prepubescent gilts a basal diet (CON) or a CON diet supplemented with 300 g/d dietary fibre (fibre), 240 g/d soya oil (SO) or both (fibre + SO). At the 19th day of the 4th oestrus cycle, gilts fed the SO diet showed 112 % more atretic follicles and greater expression of the apoptotic markers, Bax and caspase-3, and these effects were reversed by the fibre diet. The abundance of SCFA-producing microbes was decreased by the SO diet, but this effect was reversed by fibre treatment. Concentrations of serotonin and melatonin in the serum and follicular fluid were increased by the fibre diet. Overall, dietary fibre protected against high fat feeding-induced follicular atresia at least partly via gut microbiota-related serotonin–melatonin synthesis. These results provide insight into preventing negative effects on fertility in humans consuming a high-energy diet.
The microstructure evolution, dynamic recrystallization (DRX) and precipitation of the ZM61 alloy sheets prepared with different rolling conditions were studied. The DRX grain sizes (dDRX) at four high strain rate rolling (HSRR) temperatures (275–350 °C) are 1.9, 2.3, 2.6 and 3.1 μm, respectively, while the DRX volume fractions (fVDRX) are 69, 73, 76 and 82%, respectively. 300 °C is selected as the optimal HSRR temperature. The dDRX and fVDRX of the alloys prepared by pre-rolling (PR) at 300 °C + HSRR are 1.0 μm and 91%, respectively. The PR treatment does not change the types of the precipitates but promotes the precipitation. The tensile strength (UTS) of 369 MPa and yield strength (YS) of 261 MPa can be achieved by HSRR at 300 °C, while a further increase in both UTS and YS can be obtained by PR treatment.
The South Altyn Orogenic Belt (SAOB) is one of the most important orogenic belts in NW China, consisting of the South Altyn Continental Block and the Apa–Mangya Ophiolitic Mélange Belt. However, its Palaeozoic tectonic evolution is still controversial. Here, we present petrological, geochemical, zircon U–Pb and Lu–Hf isotopic data for the Mangya plutons with the aim of establishing the Palaeozoic tectonic evolution. We divide the Early Palaeozoic magmatism in the Apa–Mangya Ophiolitic Mélange Belt into four episodes and propose a plate tectonic model for the formation of these rocks. During 511–494 Ma, the South Altyn Ocean (SAO) was in a spreading stage, and some shoshonite series, I-type granitic rocks were generated. From 484 to 458 Ma, the oceanic crust of the SAO subducted northward, accompanied by large-scale magmatic events resulting in the generation of vast high-K calc-alkaline series, I-type granitic rocks. During 450–433 Ma, the SAO closed, and break-off of the subducted oceanic slab occurred, with the generation of some high-K calc-alkaline series, I–S transitional type granites. The SAOB was in post-orogenic extensional environment from 419 to 404 Ma, and many A-type granites were generated.
Advanced Ni8W/Ni12W/Ni8W alloy composite substrates used in YBCO-coated conductors with a strong cube texture and high yield strength have been fabricated, and a CeO2 buffer layer film was successfully deposited on the composite substrates. Through in situ tensile testing coupled with electron backscattered diffraction (EBSD) analysis, the stability of the cube texture of Ni8W/Ni12W/Ni8W alloy composite substrates has been investigated. The stress–strain curve shows that the yield strength (at 0.2% strain) of the composite substrates exceeds 250 Mpa. The orientation of grains and boundaries on the surface of the substrates was almost unchanged, while the strain exceeds 0.2%, which indicated that the composite substrates are adequate for depositing buffer layers and YBCO layers by the reel-to-reel process.
The mammary gland, a unique exocrine organ, is responsible for milk synthesis in mammals. Neonatal growth and health are predominantly determined by quality and quantity of milk production. Amino acids are crucial maternal nutrients that are the building blocks for milk protein and are potential energy sources for neonates. Recent advances made regarding the mammary gland further demonstrate that some functional amino acids also regulate milk protein and fat synthesis through distinct intracellular and extracellular pathways. In the present study, we discuss recent advances in the role of amino acids (especially branched-chain amino acids, methionine, arginine and lysine) in the regulation of milk synthesis. The present review also addresses the crucial questions of how amino acids are transported, sensed and transduced in the mammary gland.
This study aims to ascertain the long-term epidemic trends of malaria and evaluates the probability of achieving the eradication goal by 2020 in China. Data on malaria incidence and deaths were extracted from the China Information System for Disease Control and Prevention. The epidemic trends by sex, age and spatial distribution and predictions of malaria were estimated by using Joinpoint and Poisson regressions. From 1950 to 2016, 227 668 374 malaria cases were reported in China, with an annualised average incidence of 337.02 (336.98–337.07, 95% confidence interval (CI)) per 100 000 population. The incidence decreased with an average annual per cent change (AAPC) of −11.4% (−16.6 to −6.0). There were 36 085 malaria deaths, with an annualised average mortality of 0.534 (0.529–0.540) per 1 000 000 population. The mortality decreased with an AAPC of −8.7% (−13.7 to −3.4). The predicted number of malaria cases and deaths for 2020 is 2 562 and 10, respectively, and zero for indigenous cases. The disease burden of malaria dramatically decreased in China. Though, the goal of malaria elimination is realistic by 2020 in China, routine clinical and entomological surveillance should be continually conducted, especially for the cross-border areas and imported malaria cases.
A vocabulary acquisition learning activity was designed and a learning system featuring image-to-text recognition technology to support the activity was developed. The effectiveness of the system with regard to facilitating vocabulary acquisition was tested. The perceptions of learners toward this tool and the affordances of the system for vocabulary acquisition were also explored. To this end, we designed an experiment in which 40 native speakers of Russian learning English as a foreign language from an elementary school participated. They were assigned to either a control condition or an experimental condition. All learners learned new vocabulary in class and then applied their new knowledge to contexts with a realistic simulation of the real world by completing a learning task. The learners in the control group used a traditional approach (e.g. the learners learned vocabulary from corresponding pictures in a textbook), whereas the learners in the experimental group used the proposed learning system (e.g. the learners learned vocabulary using the system). A pre-test–post-test/delayed post-test design was employed to test the effectiveness of the treatment on vocabulary acquisition. Learner perceptions and perceived affordances of the system for vocabulary acquisition were explored through a questionnaire survey and interviews. The quantitative results showed that the learners in the experimental group outperformed their counterparts on both the vocabulary post-test and delayed post-test. The qualitative results revealed that most learners in the experimental group had positive perceptions of the system. In addition, the qualitative results showed the three main categories of affordances. Based on these results, several suggestions and implications are provided for the teaching and research community.
Time-restricted feeding (TRF) confers protection against nutritional challenges that predispose obesity and metabolic risks through involvement of circadian locomotor output cycles protein kaput genes and gut microbiome, but the underlying mechanism is not clearly understood. Therefore, the present study examined the effects of TRF on metabolic markers and circadian rhythm associated with gut microbiota in healthy males. Two groups (TRF, n 56; non-TRF, n 24) of male adults were enrolled. The TRF group provided blood at pre-TRF and post-TRF, while non-TRF one time after 25 d of trial. Serum lipid and liver profiles were determined. Real time-PCR was applied for circadian and inflammatory gene expression. The 16S rRNA genes were sequenced on the Illumina Miseq v3 platform to comprehensively catalogue the composition and abundance of bacteria in stool. We showed that TRF ameliorated the serum lipid and liver profiles of the individuals. In the TRF group, gut microbial richness was significantly enhanced, with enrichment of Prevotellaceae and Bacteroideaceae. TRF enhanced circadian gene expression probably by activation of sirtuin-1, which is positively associated with gut microbiome richness. TRF could be a safe remedy for the prevention of metabolic diseases related to dyslipidaemia, as it regulates circadian rhythm associated with gut microbiome modulation.