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A short-term 2-week (2w) and long-term 8-week (8w) feeding trial was conducted to investigate the effects of low-starch (LS) and high-starch (HS) diets on the growth performance, metabolism and liver health of largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides). Two isonitrogenous and isolipidic diets containing two levels of starch (LS, 9·06 %; HS, 13·56 %) were fed to largemouth bass. The results indicated that HS diet had no significant effects on specific growth rate during 2w, whereas significantly lowered specific growth rate at 8w. HS diet significantly increased hepatic glycolysis and gluconeogenesis at postprandial 24 h in 2w. The hepatosomatic index, plasma alkaline phosphatase, total bile acid (TBA) levels, and hepatic glycogen, TAG, total cholesterol, TBA, and NEFA contents were significantly increased in the HS group at 2w. Moreover, HS diet up-regulated fatty acid and TAG synthesis-related genes and down-regulated TAG hydrolysis and β-oxidation-related genes. Therefore, the glucolipid metabolism disorders resulted in metabolic liver disease induced by HS diet at 2w. However, the up-regulation of bile acid synthesis, inflammation and energy metabolism-related genes in 2w indicated that largemouth bass was still in a state of ‘self-repair’ response. Interestingly, all the metabolic parameters were returned to homoeostasis, with up-regulation of intestinal glucose uptake and transport-related genes, even hepatic histopathological analysis showed no obvious abnormality in the HS group in 8w. In conclusion, HS feed induced short-term acute metabolic disorder, but long-term metabolic adaptation to HS diet was related to repairing metabolism disorders via improving inflammatory responses, bile acid synthesis and energy metabolism. These results strongly indicated that the largemouth bass owned certain adaptability to HS diet.
Chronic inflammation exerts pleiotropic effects in the aetiology and progression of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Glucosamine is widely used in many countries and may have anti-inflammatory properties. We aimed to prospectively evaluate the association of regular glucosamine use with incident COPD risk and explore whether such association could be modified by smoking in the UK Biobank cohort, which recruited more than half a million participants aged 40–69 years from across the UK between 2006 and 2010. Cox proportional hazards models with adjustment for potential confounding factors were used to calculate hazard ratios (HR) as well as 95 % CI for the risk of incident COPD. During a median follow-up of 8·96 years (interquartile range 8·29–9·53 years), 9016 new-onset events of COPD were documented. We found that the regular use of glucosamine was associated with a significantly lower risk of incident COPD with multivariable adjusted HR of 0·80 (95 % CI, 0·75, 0·85; P < 0·001). When subgroup analyses were performed by smoking status, the adjusted HR for the association of regular glucosamine use with incident COPD were 0·84 (0·73, 0·96), 0·84 (0·77, 0·92) and 0·71 (0·62, 0·80) among never smokers, former smokers and current smokers, respectively. No significant interaction was observed between glucosamine use and smoking status (Pfor interaction = 0·078). Incident COPD could be reduced by 14 % to 84 % through a combination of regular glucosamine use and smoking cessation.
The FNDC5 gene encodes the fibronectin type III domain-containing protein 5 that is a membrane protein mainly expressed in skeletal muscle, and the FNDC5 rs3480 polymorphism may be associated with liver disease severity in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). We investigated the influence of the FNDC5 rs3480 polymorphism on the relationship between sarcopenia and the histological severity of NAFLD. A total of 370 adult individuals with biopsy-proven NAFLD were studied. The association between the key exposure sarcopenia and the outcome liver histological severity was investigated by binary logistic regression. Stratified analyses were undertaken to examine the impact of FNDC5 rs3480 polymorphism on the association between sarcopenia and the severity of NAFLD histology. Patients with sarcopenia had more severe histological grades of steatosis and a higher prevalence of significant fibrosis and definite non-alcoholic steatohepatitis than those without sarcopenia. There was a significant association between sarcopenia and significant fibrosis (adjusted OR 2·79, 95 % CI 1·31, 5·95, P = 0·008), independent of established risk factors and potential confounders. Among patients with sarcopenia, significant fibrosis occurred more frequently in the rs3480 AA genotype carriers than in those carrying the FNDC5 rs3480 G genotype (43·8 v. 17·2 %, P = 0·031). In the association between sarcopenia and liver fibrosis, there was a significant interaction between the FNDC5 genotype and sarcopenia status (P value for interaction = 0·006). Sarcopenia is independently associated with significant liver fibrosis, and the FNDC5 rs3480 G variant influences the association between sarcopenia and liver fibrosis in patients with biopsy-proven NAFLD.
The small-scale linear microphone arrays that are widely found in smartphones could be used to locate a sound source for indoor environments. After the Time Differences Of Arrival (TDOAs) in microphone pairs are estimated, a TDOA-based hybrid localisation scheme is proposed for a small-scale linear microphone array. The scheme contains two stages: the initialisation stage using the Levenberg-Marquardt (LM) algorithm, and the refining solution stage using the Weighted Least-Square (WLS) algorithm or the Multi-Dimensional Scaling-based (MDS) algorithm. Simulations and field tests show that the proposed indoor localisation scheme outperforms the existing schemes, and it can achieve an average error of 0·32 metres in an 8 m by 5 m area.
During 1997–2012 we conducted a nationwide camera-trapping survey and assessed the availability of prey and habitat for the clouded leopard Neofelis nebulosa in Taiwan. We surveyed 1,249 camera-trap sites over 113,636 camera-trap days, from the seashore to an altitude of 3,796 m and covering various types of vegetation. No clouded leopards were photographed during 128,394 camera-trap days, including at 209 sites in other studies, confirming the presumed extinction of clouded leopards in Taiwan. Assessment of the prey base revealed altitudinal distribution patterns of prey species and prey biomass. Areas at lower altitudes and with less human encroachment and hunting supported a higher prey biomass and more of the typical prey species of clouded leopards. Habitat analysis revealed 8,523 km2 of suitable habitat but this was reduced to 6,734 km2 when adjacent areas of human encroachment were subtracted. In the absence of hunting and large mammalian carnivores the major prey of clouded leopards in Taiwan, such as Formosan macaques Macaca cyclopis, Reeves's muntjacs Muntiacus reevesi, Formosan serow Capricornis swinhoei and sambar Rusa unicolor, could become over-abundant. Thus, it is important to address the cascading effect of the disappearance of top-down predator control. Our assessment indicated that, with proper regulation of hunting, habitat restoration and corridor improvement, it may be possible to reintroduce the clouded leopard.
The present study assessed the effects of vegetarian and omnivorous diets on HDL-cholesterol (HDL-C), LDL-cholesterol (LDL-C), TAG and the ratio of HDL-C to total cholesterol (TC) by gender.
HDL-C, LDL-C, TAG and HDL-C:TC were compared among three diet groups (vegan, ovo-lacto vegetarian and omnivorous). Multivariate linear regression analysis was performed to examine factors significantly and independently associated with vegetarian status and to estimate the β value of lipid profiles for the diet groups.
A cross-sectional study. Data were obtained from the Taiwanese Survey on the Prevalence of Hyperglycemia, Hyperlipidemia and Hypertension (TwSHHH).
The study comprised included 3257 men and 3551 women.
After adjusting for confounders, vegan and ovo-lacto vegetarian diets lowered LDL-C levels (β=−10·98, P=0·005 and β=−7·12, P=0·025, respectively) in men compared with omnivorous diet. There was a significant association between HDL-C and vegan diet (β=−6·53, P=0·004). In females, the β values of HDL-C, TAG and HDL-C:TC were −5·72 (P<0·0001), 16·51 (P=0·011) and −0·02 (P=0·012) for vegan diet, and −4·86 (P=0·002), 15·09 (P=0·008) and −0·01 (P=0·026) for ovo-lacto vegetarian diet, when compared with omnivorous diet.
Vegan diet was associated with lower HDL-C concentrations in both males and females. Because the ovo-lacto vegetarian diet was effective in lowering LDL-C, it may be more appropriate for males.
Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO) satellites play a significant role in the space segment of the Chinese Area Navigation System. The C-Band transfer ranging method developed by the National Time Service Center (NTSC) has been widely used in the Chinese Area Positioning System (CAPS), with its advantages of separating satellite ranging from time synchronization and being unaffected by weather. The explicit ranging correction models for the C-Band transfer ranging method are introduced in detail in this article for the first time. Precise Orbit Determination (POD) using C-Band pseudo-range observation of GEO satellite 2010-001A in July 2012 has been conducted. The residual Root Mean Square (RMS) of each site and POD are analysed with orbit difference over overlaps of adjacent orbit arcs. Moreover, the orbit of the GEO satellite has been evaluated by Satellite Laser Ranging (SLR) data from both domestic and foreign SLR sites for the first time. The residual RMS of POD using C-Band observation is better than 0·1 m, and the orbit difference over overlaps of adjacent orbit arcs is better than 3 m. In addition, the residual RMS in line-of-sight for a SLR site in China are better than 1 m, while the RMS for the Yarragadee site in Australia is about 3·4 m. It has been shown that the GEO satellite orbit accords very well with the C-Band observation. Also, the distribution of CAPS stations affects the orbit precision. All sites in CAPS are now located in China with low and medium latitudes. The residual RMS of the SLR site in the southern hemisphere is larger than that of the site in China.
In this paper we investigate the differential geometry of 1-lightlike submanifolds in anti-de Sitter n-space as an application of the theory of Legendrian singularities. Based on some theory of lightlike submanifolds, we also introduce the notion of 1-lightlike horospherical Gauss curvature, which is important for us to study the singularities of 1-lightlike horospherical hypersurfaces. Moreover, we discuss the related geometric property of 1-lightlike horospherical hypersurfaces in anti-de Sitter n-space.
Objectives: Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computerized tomography (CT) scanners are high-tech equipment with the highest utilizations and expenditures in Taiwan. This study investigates the factors that affect MRI and CT utilization, such as whether supply-side factors have more impact than demand-side factors, and the effect of utilization control policies.
Methods: This study used the nationwide CT and MRI claim data for the years 1998 to 2001 from the Bureau of National Health Insurance (BNHI) in Taiwan. Multiple regression analysis was the statistical method used to determine the relative factors that influence CT and MRI utilization.
Results: CT : population ratio, hospital-based physician : population ratio, female ratio, pediatric (≤14 years) : population ratio, and family income significantly influenced CT utilization. MRI : population ratio and hospital-based physician : population ratio, female ratio, and family income significantly influenced MRI utilization. However, the proportion of the aged (≥65 years of age) did not significantly influence CT or MRI utilization after controlling for other factors. The rates of CT and MRI utilization for the outpatient and inpatient settings and the repeated uses of CT or MRI have decreased significantly after a utilization review was implemented by BNHI, which suggests that CT and MRI have been overused.
Conclusions: Increases in supply-side factors significantly increase CT/MRI utilization, and supply-side factors impact CT/MRI utilization more than demand-side factors. The results show that the utilization instant report policy effectively decreases repeated uses of CT/MRI.
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