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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.
In this paper, CuCr–Zr alloys prepared by vacuum melting with adding La and Ni elementswere heat-treated and aged, followed by plastic deformation using low-energy cyclic impact tests, to simultaneously improve their mechanical and electrical properties. Results showed that the grain size of the casted Cu–Cr–Zr alloys was significantly reduced after the solid-solution aging and plastic deformation process. There were a lot of dispersed Cr and Cu5Zr precipitates formed in the alloys, and the numbers of dislocations were significantly increased. Accordingly, the hardness was increased from 78 to 232 HV, and the tensile strength was increased from 225 to 691 MPa. Electrical conductivity has not been significantly affected after these processes. The enhancement of overall performance is mainly attributed to the combined effects of solid-solution hardening, fine grain hardening, and precipitation/dislocation strengthening.
The polymerization of 3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene (EDOT) onto nanosilica (SiO2) was synthesized in this study by using supercritical carbon dioxide (SCCO2). With the addition of dopants of p-toluenesulfonic acid (p-TSA) or decylbenzene sulfonic acid (DBSA), the PEDOT/SiO2 composite became conductive. The product was characterized by FTIR spectroscopy and the core-shell structure was confirmed through the TEM images. The electrical properties were analyzed by UV-vis absorbance and four-point probe measurement. DBSA is shown as the better dopants with the molar ratio (DBSA/EDOT) of 0.2 at the reaction time of 48 hours. The maximum coating percentage is 63 wt% under the optimal operation conditions at 40oC and 280 bar. The conductivity is tuned up to 6.6×10-2 S/cm after the coating process.
Existing data on folate status and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) prognosis are scarce. We prospectively examined whether serum folate concentrations at diagnosis were associated with liver cancer-specific survival (LCSS) and overall survival (OS) among 982 patients with newly diagnosed, previously untreated HCC, who were enrolled in the Guangdong Liver Cancer Cohort (GLCC) study between September 2013 and February 2017. Serum folate concentrations were measured using chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay. Cox proportional hazards models were performed to estimate hazard ratios (HR) and 95 % CI by sex-specific quartile of serum folate. Compared with patients in the third quartile of serum folate, patients in the lowest quartile had significantly inferior LCSS (HR = 1·48; 95 % CI 1·05, 2·09) and OS (HR = 1·43; 95 % CI 1·03, 1·99) after adjustment for non-clinical and clinical prognostic factors. The associations were not significantly modified by sex, age at diagnosis, alcohol drinking status and Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) stage. However, there were statistically significant interactions on both multiplicative and additive scale between serum folate and C-reactive protein (CRP) levels or smoking status and the associations of lower serum folate with worse LCSS and OS were only evident among patients with CRP > 3·0 mg/l or current smokers. An inverse association with LCSS were also observed among patients with liver damage score ≥3. These results suggest that lower serum folate concentrations at diagnosis are independently associated with worse HCC survival, most prominently among patients with systemic inflammation and current smokers. A future trial of folate supplementation seems to be promising in HCC patients with lower folate status.
The present study investigated the current status of fruit and vegetable intake among seniors and assessed the relationship between personal background factors, social psychological factors and environmental factors of the study participants and their fruit and vegetable consumption behaviour.
Research data were collected through individual interviews using a questionnaire developed by the authors. SPSS for Windows 15·0 statistical software was used to process and analyse the data.
Elderly individuals sampled from all twenty-nine administration units of Keelung City’s Renai District were interviewed.
Study participants included 398 residents aged 65 years or older.
On average, study participants ate five daily servings of fruits and vegetables on 2·86 d/week. The important variables influencing fruit and vegetable consumption were education level, outcome expectancy, social support, self-efficacy, frequency of dining out and role modelling. Educated participants consumed more fruits and vegetables than those without education. Outcome expectancy, social support, self-efficacy and role modelling had positive impacts on fruit and vegetable intake, but frequency of dining out had a negative impact on fruit and vegetable intake. The significant predictors of fruit and vegetable intake behaviour were education level, outcome expectancy, social support and frequency of dining out. Among those variables, social support was the most influential factor.
Our findings supported the conclusion that health education strategies to increase fruit and vegetable intake among seniors should include the variables of social support and outcome expectancy.
Total body fat mass (TBFM) and total body lean mass (TBLM) are the major components of the human body. Although these highly correlated phenotypic traits are frequently used to characterize obesity, the specific shared genetic factors that influence both traits remain largely unknown. Our study was aimed at identifying common quantitative trait loci (QTLs) contributing to both TBFM and TBLM. We performed a whole genome-linkage scan study in a large sample of 3255 subjects from 420 Caucasian pedigrees. Bivariate linkage analysis was carried out in both the entire sample and gender-specific subsamples. Several potentially important genomic regions that may harbour QTLs important for TBFM and TBLM were identified. For example, 20p12-11 achieved a LOD score of 2·04 in the entire sample and, in the male subsample, two genomic regions, 20p12 (LOD=2·08) and 3p26-25 (LOD=1·92), showed suggestive linkage. In addition, two-point linkage analyses for chromosome X showed suggestive linkages on Xp22 in the entire sample (LOD=2·14) and significant linkage on Xp22 in the female subsample (LOD=3·05). Complete pleiotropy was suggested for 20p12 and 3p26-25 in males. Our results suggest that QTLs on chromosomes 20p12, 3p26-25 and Xp22 may jointly influence TBFM and TBLM. Further fine mapping and gene identification studies for these pleiotropic effects are needed.
The yolk proteins of the silkworm, Bombyx mori, are important sources of nutrition and energy during embryo development. By analysing the yolk proteins from silkworm eggs, the composition and the metabolism of yolk proteins during embryo development stages can be studied at the proteome level. Yolk proteins were obtained from unfertilized eggs and eggs at different embryo development stages by dissection and then separated and analysed by two-dimensional electrophoresis and its corresponding image analysis system. It was discovered that over 200 proteins exist in mature silkworm eggs. Some specific spots of yolk proteins were found in different silkworm strains, while few differences in yolk proteins appeared during different development stages in the same silkworm strain. This result indicates that the silkworm embryo does not utilize yolk proteins selectively by absorbing one or some special proteins, but by absorbing the yolk protein grains one by one during development.
This paper attempts to evaluate the clinical usefulness of CYFRA 21-1 as a serum tumour marker in patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC).
The serum concentration of CYFRA 21-1 was measured utilizing a new electrochemiluminescent immunoassay (ECLIA) in 142 patients with HNSCC before and after treatment, 68 patients with benign tumours of the head and neck, and 50 healthy controls.
Serum levels of CYFRA 21-1 in patients with HNSCC were significantly higher than those of benign tumours and healthy controls (p < 0.001). The diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of CYFRA 21-1 for HNSCC were 62 per cent and 100 per cent, respectively. The positive rates of CYFRA 21-1 increased with progression of HNSCC, serum CYFRA 21-1 levels were related to the tumour stage expressed by primary tumour (T) and nodal status (N) (p < 0.001), but not related to patient age, gender, smoking and drinking habit, or histopathological grade (p > 0.05). Post-treatment levels of CYFRA 21-1 in HNSCC decreased significantly (p < 0.001). Among 38 patients with clinical or radiological evidence of a recurrence during follow-up, 78.9 per cent (30 of 38) showed an increase in CYFRA 21-1.
The analytical ECLIA performance for serum CYFRA 21-1 provides a new means of clinical assessment for HNSCC. The results of ECLIA suggest that the serum marker CYFRA 21-1 is valuable not only for diagnosis but also for close monitoring of patients with HNSCC.
Ca-α-sialon compacts pressureless-sintered to intermediate temperatures, which consisted of both α-sialon and unreacted α–Si3N4 grains, were investigated with transmission electron microscopy for an overall composition Ca1.8Si6.6Al5.4O1.8N14.2. Special attention was paid to identification of the possible crystallographic orientation between a-sialon and the α–Si3N4 particles. In contrast to the frequently occurring heteroepitaxial nucleation of α-sialon in rare-earth-doped samples with low x values, this study showed that most of the newly formed α-sialon grains had no epitaxial orientation relationship with the α–Si3N4 particles, suggesting nonepitaxial heterogeneous nucleation to be a more probable mechanism for the Ca–α-sialon phase with high Ca concentrations.
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