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The selection of the correct convergence angle is essential for achieving the highest resolution imaging in scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM). The use of poor heuristics, such as Rayleigh's quarter-phase rule, to assess probe quality and uncertainties in the measurement of the aberration function results in the incorrect selection of convergence angles and lower resolution. Here, we show that the Strehl ratio provides an accurate and efficient way to calculate criteria for evaluating the probe size for STEM. A convolutional neural network trained on the Strehl ratio is shown to outperform experienced microscopists at selecting a convergence angle from a single electron Ronchigram using simulated datasets. Generating tens of thousands of simulated Ronchigram examples, the network is trained to select convergence angles yielding probes on average 85% nearer to optimal size at millisecond speeds (0.02% of human assessment time). Qualitative assessment on experimental Ronchigrams with intentionally introduced aberrations suggests that trends in the optimal convergence angle size are well modeled but high accuracy requires a high number of training datasets. This near-immediate assessment of Ronchigrams using the Strehl ratio and machine learning highlights a viable path toward the rapid, automated alignment of aberration-corrected electron microscopes.
This article introduces an intuitive understanding of electron Ronchigrams and how they are affected by aberrations. This is accomplished through a portable web application, http://Ronchigram.com. The history of the Ronchigram, the physics which define it, and its visual features are reviewed in the context of aberration-corrected scanning transmission electron microscopy.
We investigated potential nosocomial aerosol transmission of severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome virus (SFTSV) with droplet precautions. During aerosol generating procedures, SFTSV was be transmitted from person to person through aerosols. Thus, airborne precautions should be added to standard precautions to avoid direct contact and droplet transmission.
Assessment of frontal lobe impairment in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a matter of great importance, since it often causes ALS patients to decrease medication and nursing compliance, thus shortening their survival time.
The frontal assessment battery (FAB) is a short and rapid method for assessing frontal executive functions. We investigated the applicability of the FAB as a screening method for assessing cognitive impairments in 61 ALS patients. Depending on the results of the FAB, we classified patients into two subgroups: FAB-normal and FAB-abnormal. We then performed additional evaluations of cognitive function using the Korean version of the mini-mental state examination (K-MMSE), a verbal fluency test (COWAT), and a neuropsychiatric inventory (NPI). Results of these tests were compared between the two groups using Mann-Whitney U-tests, and Spearman correlation analyses were used to investigate the relationships between FAB score and disease duration and severity.
Of the 61 sporadic ALS patients included in this study, 14 were classified as FAB-abnormal and 47 were classified as FAB-normal. The FAB-normal and FAB-abnormal patients performed significantly differently in all domains of the COWAT. There was no difference in behavioral disturbance, as assessed by the NPI, between the two groups. The FAB scores were found to significantly correlate with both disease duration and severity.
The FAB shows promise as a method of screening for frontal lobe dysfunction in ALS, as it is not only quick and easy, but also reliable. Additional studies should examine how FAB performance changes as ALS progresses.
Nitrogen-doped titania with a unique two-level hierarchical structure and visible light photocatalytic activity is reported. Thus, nitrogen-doped titanium oxide microrods decorated with N-doped titanium oxide nanosheets were synthesized by a hydrothermal reaction in NH4OH and postcalcination. During the calcination, the in situ incorporation of nitrogen atoms of ammonium ion into titania lattice was accompanied by the structural evolution from titanate to anatase titania. The morphological and structural evolution was monitored by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), x-ray diffraction (XRD), thermogravimetric analysis/differential thermal analysis (TGA/DTA), Raman, Fourier transform infrared (FTIR), x-ray absorption near edge structure (XANES), x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and adsorption isotherms. The N-doping brought visible light absorption, and the material exhibited high photocatalytic activity in the decomposition of Orange II under visible light irradiation (λ ≥ 400 nm), especially when it was loaded with 1 wt% Pt as a cocatalyst.
The improvement of optical reflectance of BaO–ZnO–B2O3–SiO2 (BZBS) glass by the addition of various types of micron-scale crystalline fillers (TiO2, SiO2, ZrO2, Al2O3, MgO, and cordierite) was investigated for application of the materials to barrier ribs of plasma display panels. The fillers were partially dissolved during sintering, yielding an increased local volume of the fillers in the submicron range, filler rearrangement along boundaries of sintered glass frits, and rather irregular and rugged filler shapes differing from the original morphologies. The measured optical reflectance of the various filler added specimens was within the 30–70% range, which was much higher than the predicted values (less than 10%) based on the rule of mixture of the refractive index. Here we report that the high reflectance of the barrier rib glass for plasma display panels is explained by light scattering by the increased submicron portion of the partially dissolved residual fillers, the size of which is similar to the visual spectrum range (0.4–0.7 μm). The order of reflectance improvement among different types of filler-embedded specimens was consistent with that of the degree of dispersion of the residual fillers in the glass matrix.
Canine oocytes are ovulated at prophase of the first meiotic division and undergo maturation in the distal part of the oviduct for at least 48–72 h. Because of these differences from other domestic mammals, the efficiency of in vitro maturation (IVM) of canine oocyte is very low. The present study was conducted to evaluate the effects of canine serum on IVM of canine oocytes recovered from ovaries in various reproductive states (follicular, luteal or anestrous stages). Oocytes were recovered by mincing ovaries from bitches presented for ovariohysterectomy at various stages of the estrous cycle. Heat-inactivated canine serum was prepared with blood taken from dogs at the anestrous, estrous or diestrous stage of the estrous cycle as determined by progesterone concentration and vaginal cytology. Oocytes were cultured for 72 h in tissue culture medium (TCM)-199 supplemented with 10% canine anestrous, estrous or diestrous serum or fetal bovine serum (FBS) (experiment 1), or supplemented with 0 (control), 5%, 10% or 20% canine estrous serum (experiment 2). In experiment 1, IVM of oocytes collected at the follicular stage of the estrous cycle to metaphase II (MII) stage was higher (p < 0.05) with canine estrous serum (14.2%) than with canine anestrous (5.2%) or diestrous serum (6.3%), FBS (2.2%) or in the control (2.2%). In experiment 2, oocytes collected at the follicular stage of the estrous cycle cultured in TCM-199 with 10% canine estrous serum showed a higher maturation rate to MII stage (13.5%, p < 0.05) compared with those cultured with 5% (1.3% MII) or 20% canine estrous serum (5.1% MII) or the control (2.7% MII). In conclusion, our results demonstrate that supplementing culture medium with 10% canine estrous serum improves IVM of canine follicular stage oocytes.
This study compared the developmental competence of somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) embryos reconstructed with different donor cells and analysed gene expression in the resulting embryos. Bovine fetal/adult ear fibroblasts and cumulus cells were used as donor cells and the developmental competence of the reconstructed embryos was monitored. The cell number and allocation in blastocysts were determined by differential staining. The Bax, E-cad, IF-tau, Hsp (heat shock protein) 70, Igf2r (insulin-like growth factor 2 receptor), DNMT (DNA methyltransferase) 1 and Mash (mammalian achaete-scute homologue) 2 genes were selected for gene expression analysis. The relative abundance (ratio to GAPDH mRNA) of gene transcripts in blastocysts was measured by semiquantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. In experiment 1, development of SCNT preimplantation embryos and the cell numbers of inner cell masses and trophoblasts were not different among SCNT embryos derived from different cell types. In experiment 2, the relative expression of GAPDH and Hsp 70 transcripts was similar in all embryos. The expression of Bax, Igf2r and Mash2 transcripts was significantly increased in SCNT embryos reconstructed with adult fibroblasts. The E-cad transcript levels were reduced in SCNT embryos reconstructed with fetal fibroblasts. Relative abundance of DNMT1 in SCNT embryos derived from fetal fibroblasts was increased, and IF-tau expression in SCNT embryos derived from cumulus cells was increased. In conclusion, depending on the type of donor cells, preimplantation SCNT embryos displayed marked differences in gene expression. This may affect the developmental competence of SCNT embryos reconstructed with different cell types after implantation or during fetal growth in vivo.
The effects of the isoelectronic Al-doping of GaN grown by metal organic chemical vapor deposition were investigated for the first time using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Hall measurements, photoluminescence (PL), and time-resolved PL. When a certain amount of Al was incorporated into the GaN films, the room temperature photoluminescence intensity of the films was approximately two orders larger than that of the undoped GaN. More importantly, the electron mobility significantly increased from 130 for the undoped sample to 500 cm2/Vs for the sample grown at a TMAl flow rate of 10 νmol/min, while the unintentional background concentration only increased slightly relative to the TMAl flow. The incorporation of Al as an isoelectronic dopant into GaN was easy during MOCVD growth and significantly improved the optical and electrical properties of the film. This was believed to result from a reduction in the dislocation-related non-radiative recombination centers or certain other defects due to the isoelectronic Al-doping.
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