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The tobacco cutworm Spodoptera litura (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) is a polyphagous pest with a highly selective and sensitive chemosensory system involved in complex physiological behaviors such as searching for food sources, feeding, courtship, and oviposition. However, effective management strategies for controlling the insect pest populations under threshold levels are lacking. Therefore, there is an urgent need to formulate eco-friendly pest control strategies based on the disruption of the insect chemosensory system. In this study, we identified 158 putative chemosensory genes based on transcriptomic and genomic data for S. litura, including 45 odorant-binding proteins (OBPs, nine were new), 23 chemosensory proteins (CSPs), 60 odorant receptors (ORs, three were new), and 30 gustatory receptors (GRs, three were new), a number higher than those reported by previous transcriptome studies. Subsequently, we constructed phylogenetic trees based on these genes in moths and analyzed the dynamic expression of various genes in head capsules across larval instars using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. Nine genes–SlitOBP8, SlitOBP9, SlitOBP25, SlitCSP1, SlitCSP7, SlitCSP18, SlitOR34, SlitGR240, and SlitGR242–were highly expressed in the heads of 3- to 5-day-old S. litura larvae. The genes differentially expressed in olfactory organs during larval development might play crucial roles in the chemosensory system of S. litura larvae. Our findings substantially expand the gene inventory for S. litura and present potential target genes for further studies on larval feeding in S. litura.
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.
Hypertension represents one of the most common pre-existing conditions and comorbidities in Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients. To explore whether hypertension serves as a risk factor for disease severity, a multi-centre, retrospective study was conducted in COVID-19 patients. A total of 498 consecutively hospitalised patients with lab-confirmed COVID-19 in China were enrolled in this cohort. Using logistic regression, we assessed the association between hypertension and the likelihood of severe illness with adjustment for confounders. We observed that more than 16% of the enrolled patients exhibited pre-existing hypertension on admission. More severe COVID-19 cases occurred in individuals with hypertension than those without hypertension (21% vs. 10%, P = 0.007). Hypertension associated with the increased risk of severe illness, which was not modified by other demographic factors, such as age, sex, hospital geological location and blood pressure levels on admission. More attention and treatment should be offered to patients with underlying hypertension, who usually are older, have more comorbidities and more susceptible to cardiac complications.
Tuberculosis (TB) remains a global public health threat. Misdiagnosis and delayed therapy of sputum smear-negative TB can affect the treatment outcomes and promote pathogen transmission. The application of Xpert MTB/RIF assay in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) has been recommended but needs clinical evidence. We carried out a prospective study in the Nanjing Public Health Medical Center from September 2018 to August 2019. Pulmonary tuberculosis (PTB) patients were enrolled in the study if they had negative results of sputum smear. We compared the performance of Xpert MTB/RIF assay in sputum and BALF using sputum culture as the reference. In addition to this, we applied parallel tests using sputum culture, sputum-based Xpert MTB/RIF assay and BALF-based Xpert MTB/RIF assay to jointly detect smear-negative PTB using clinical diagnosis as the reference. With mycobacterial culture as the reference standard, Xpert MTB/RIF of BALF showed a higher sensitivity (14/16, 87.5%), but a relatively lower specificity (57/92, 62.0%). Xpert MTB/RIF of sputum showed relatively lower sensitivity (6/10, 60.0%) and higher specificity (63/88, 71.6%). Compared with sputum culture, Xpert MTB /RIF assay reduced the median detection time of MTB from 30 to 0 days, which significantly shortened the diagnosis time of the smear-negative TB patients. Among the combined detections, the positive detection proportion was improved with significant differences comparing with sputum culture only, from 11.1% (10/90) to 46.7% (42/90) (P < 0.05). Our study showed Xpert MTB/RIF in BALF had a better performance in detecting MTB of smear-negative patients.
This paper analyzes a regime-switching New Keynesian model to understand what happens to the aggregate economy when the nominal interest rate hits the zero lower bound (ZLB). Contrary to the literature, our model predicts that the aggregate demand curve is not always upward sloping when the ZLB binds. Instead, it depends on expectations. If the expected duration of the ZLB is short but consistent with expectations surveys, the AD curve can be downward sloping. In that case, the fiscal multiplier is moderate and supply-side reforms are expansionary. These results complement existing findings in the literature.
Studies have suggested an association between metabolic and cerebrocardiovascular diseases and major depressive disorder (MDD). However, the risk of metabolic and cerebrocardiovascular diseases in the unaffected siblings of patients with MDD remains uncertain. Using the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database, 22,438 unaffected siblings of patients with MDD and 89,752 age-/sex-matched controls were selected and followed up from 1996 to the end of 2011. Individuals who developed metabolic and cerebrocardiovascular diseases during the follow-up period were identified. Compared with the controls, the unaffected siblings of patients with MDD had a higher prevalence of metabolic diseases, such as hypertension (5.0% vs. 4.5%, p = 0.007), dyslipidemia (5.6% vs. 4.8%, p < 0.001), and obesity (1.7% vs. 1.5%, p = 0.028), and cerebrocardiovascular diseases, such as ischemic stroke (0.6% vs. 0.4%, p < 0.005) and ischemic heart disease (2.1% vs. 1.7%, p < 0.001). Logistic regression analyses revealed that the unaffected siblings of patients with MDD were more likely to develop hypertension, dyslipidemia, ischemic stroke, and ischemic heart diseases during the follow-up period than the controls. Our study revealed a familial coaggregation between MDD and metabolic and cerebrocardiovascular diseases. Additional studies are required to investigate the shared pathophysiology of MDD and metabolic and cerebrocardiovascular diseases.
Family coaggregation of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD), bipolar disorder (BD), major depressive disorder (MDD) and schizophrenia have been presented in previous studies. The shared genetic and environmental factors among psychiatric disorders remain elusive.
This nationwide population-based study examined familial coaggregation of major psychiatric disorders in first-degree relatives (FDRs) of individuals with ASD. Taiwan's National Health Insurance Research Database was used to identify 26 667 individuals with ASD and 67 998 FDRs of individuals with ASD. The cohort was matched in 1:4 ratio to 271 992 controls. The relative risks (RRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) of ADHD, ASD, BD, MDD and schizophrenia were assessed among FDRs of individuals with ASD and ASD with intellectual disability (ASD-ID).
FDRs of individuals with ASD have higher RRs of major psychiatric disorders compared with controls: ASD 17.46 (CI 15.50–19.67), ADHD 3.94 (CI 3.72–4.17), schizophrenia 3.05 (CI 2.74–3.40), BD 2.22 (CI 1.98–2.48) and MDD 1.88 (CI 1.76–2.00). Higher RRs of schizophrenia (4.47, CI 3.95–5.06) and ASD (18.54, CI 16.18–21.23) were observed in FDRs of individuals with both ASD-ID, compared with ASD only.
The risk for major psychiatric disorders was consistently elevated across all types of FDRs of individuals with ASD. FDRs of individuals with ASD-ID are at further higher risk for ASD and schizophrenia. Our results provide leads for future investigation of shared etiologic pathways of ASD, ID and major psychiatric disorders and highlight the importance of mental health care delivered to at-risk families for early diagnoses and interventions.
There has been considerable interest in stratospheric airships as a cost-effective alternative to earth orbit satellites for sightseeing, aerial photography, communication and carrying weapons, etc. Many countries have plans to develop the airship owing to its greatly expected usage. The suspended curtain plays a vital role in force transmission in stratospheric airships but lacks attention. In this paper, the relationship between the optimal shape of suspended curtain and load conditions was studied through CAE Abaqus and Isight. Firstly, by using secondary development function of Abaqus, parametric FEA models of suspended curtains and envelopes have been established, several parameters were used to describe the shape of suspended curtains. Secondly, parameters of the suspended curtain shape were optimized under different loading conditions by means of the genetic algorithm. Lastly, through the analysis of the results, some conclusions are summarized: The relationship between n1(n2) and nb was found to be linear when the suspended curtain is subjected to vertical load. The stress transfer law of suspended curtain and inflatable membrane structure under the inclined load were also obtained, which are valuable for the structural engineering design of stratospheric airships..
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients were classified into four clinical stages (uncomplicated illness, mild, severe and critical pneumonia) depending on disease severity. We aim to investigate the corresponding clinical, radiological and laboratory characteristics between different clinical stages. A retrospective, single-centre study of 101 confirmed patients with COVID-19 at Renmin Hospital of Wuhan University from 2 January to 28 January 2020 was enrolled; follow-up endpoint was on 8 February 2020. Clinical data were collected and compared during the course of illness. The median age of the 101 patients was 51.0 years and 33.6% were medical staff. Fever (68%), cough (50%) and fatigue (23%) are the most common symptoms. About 26% patients underwent the mechanical ventilation and 98% patients were treated with antibiotics. Thirty-seven per cent patients were cured and 11 died. On admission, the number of patients with uncomplicated illness, mild, severe and critical pneumonia were 2 [2%], 86 [85%], 11 [11%] and 2 [2%]. Forty-four of the 86 mild pneumonia progressed to severe illness within 4 days, with nine patients worsened due to critical pneumonia within 4 days. Two of the 11 severe patients improved to mild condition while three others deteriorated. Significant differences were observed among groups of different clinical stages in numbers of influenced pulmonary segments (6 vs. 12 vs. 17, P < 0.001). A significantly upward trend was witnessed in ground-glass opacities overlapped with striped shadows (33% vs. 42% vs. 55% vs. 80%, P < 0.001), while pure ground-glass opacities gradually decreased as disease progressed (45% vs. 35% vs. 24% vs. 13%, P < 0.001) within 12 days. Lymphocytes, prealbumin and albumin showed a downtrend as disease progressed from mild to severe or critical condition, an uptrend was found in white blood cells, C-reactive protein, neutrophils and lactate dehydrogenase. The proportions of serum amyloid A > 300 mg/l in mild, severe and critical conditions were 18%, 46% and 71%, respectively.
The X chromosome is known to play an important role in many sex-specific diseases. However, only a few single-nucleotide polymorphisms on the X chromosome have been found to be associated with diseases. Compared to the autosomes, conducting association tests on the X chromosome is more intractable due to the difference in the number of X chromosomes between females and males. On the other hand, X-chromosome inactivation takes place in female mammals, which is a phenomenon in which the expression of one copy of two X chromosomes in females is silenced in order to achieve the same gene expression level as that in males. In addition, imprinting effects may be related to certain diseases. Currently, there are some existing approaches taking X-chromosome inactivation into account when testing for associations on the X chromosome. However, none of them allows for imprinting effects. Therefore, in this paper, we propose a robust test, ZXCII, which accounts for both X-chromosome inactivation and imprinting effects without requiring specifying the genetic models in advance. Simulation studies are conducted in order to investigate the validity and performance of ZXCII under various scenarios of different parameter values. The simulation results show that ZXCII controls the type I error rate well when there is no association. Furthermore, with regards to power, ZXCII is robust in all of the situations considered and generally outperforms most of the existing methods in the presence of imprinting effects, especially under complete imprinting effects.
To explore whether different polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP) concentrations affect the results of intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), a prospective study was conducted for 194 couples undergoing 210 ICSI therapy cycles. These cycles were divided into three groups (10, 7 and 5% groups) using the corresponding concentration of PVP for sperm immobilization. The main outcome measures were analyzed. Results indicated that, with a decrease in PVP concentrations, all of the main outcome measures increased. In particular, the high-quality cleavage embryo rate in the 7% group was significantly lower than in the 5% group (P < 0.01), and the cleavage, high-quality cleavage embryo, and high-quality blastocyst rates in the 5% group were significantly higher than those in the 10% group (all P < 0.001). For high-/intermediate-quality semen, all of the main outcome measures were significantly increased with 5% PVP. For the poor-quality semen, only the high-quality cleavage embryo and high-quality blastocyst rates were significantly higher in the 5% group. Therefore, lowering PVP concentrations greatly promoted the development of embryos in ICSI cycles, with an optimal concentration of 5% for ICSI.
Whether the first-degree relatives (FDRs) of patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) have an increased risk of the major psychiatric disorders, namely schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, OCD, major depressive disorder (MDD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), remains unclear.
Using the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database with the whole population sample size (n = 23 258 175), 89 500 FDRs, including parents, offspring, siblings, and twins, of patients with OCD were identified in our study. The relative risks (RRs) of major psychiatric disorders were assessed among FDRs of patients with OCD.
FDRs of patients with OCD had higher RRs of major psychiatric disorders, namely OCD (RR 8.11, 95% confidence interval (CI) 7.68–8.57), bipolar disorder (RR 2.85, 95% CI 2.68–3.04), MDD (RR 2.67, 95% CI 2.58–2.76), ASD (RR 2.38, 95% CI 2.10–2.71), ADHD (RR 2.19, 95% CI 2.07–2.32), and schizophrenia (RR 1.97, 95% CI 1.86–2.09), compared with the total population. Different familial kinships of FDRs, such as parents, offspring, siblings, and twins consistently had increased risks for these disorders. In addition, a dose-dependent relationship was found between the numbers of OCD probands and the risk of each major psychiatric disorder.
The FDRs, including parents, offspring, siblings, and twins, of patients with OCD have a higher risk of OCD, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, MDD, ADHD, and ASD. The familial co-aggregation of OCD with OCD and other major psychiatric disorders was existent in a dose-dependent manner. Given the increased risks of psychiatric disorders, medical practitioners should closely monitor the mental health of the FDRs of patients with OCD.
Resource rationality holds great promise as a unifying principle across theories in neuroscience, cognitive science, and economics. The target article clearly lays out this potential for unification. However, resource-rational models are more diverse and less easily unified than might appear from the target article. Here, we explore some of that diversity.
Mangrove species have developed nutrient conservation mechanisms to adapt to oligotrophic intertidal environments. However, nutrient enrichment occurs worldwide, particularly in estuarine and coastal regions. Mangrove species may change their adaptive strategies if nutrient availability increases substantially. To understand how nutrient resorption (a major nutrient conservation strategy) responds to nutrient enrichment, a common mangrove species in China, Aegiceras corniculatum (black mangrove), was selected, and saplings were cultivated in nutrient-enriched soils. After one year, neither N nor P resorption efficiency showed significant variations with nutrient availability and there was no difference between N and P resorption efficiency. Overall, nutrient resorption efficiency of A. corniculatum remained at ∼40%, lower than the global average levels of evergreen plants (∼50%), indicating incomplete resorption of nutrients. Incomplete resorption was also evidenced by the nutrient concentrations, resorption proficiency and N: P ratio of plant leaves. Collectively, these results indicate that black mangrove can maintain constant nutrient resorption efficiency under eutrophic conditions.
We investigate the conditions that determine the detachment of a water drop from different vibrating textured plates by using vertical vibrations. The plate surfaces were patterned by a lattice of pillars of different shapes with different geometrical arrangements. The acceleration threshold for the water droplet to bounce off the surfaces was measured as a function of the excitation frequency. In each case, the acceleration threshold presents a minimum at the natural frequency of the droplet. The minimum acceleration required for the take-off is larger for small droplets than for large droplets. Namely, one finds that the value of the threshold depends on the size of the droplet and on the maximum apparent contact area between the droplet and the substrate. The theoretical model takes into account the energy necessary to break the capillary bridges between the droplet and the pillars of the surface. This model captures the main ingredients explaining the drop size dependence of the acceleration threshold for the take-off.
This paper is concerned with the periodic (in time) solutions to an one-dimensional semilinear wave equation with x-dependent coefficients. Such a model arises from the forced vibrations of a nonhomogeneous string and propagation of seismic waves in nonisotropic media. By combining variational methods with saddle point reduction technique, we obtain the existence of at least three periodic solutions whenever the period is a rational multiple of the length of the spatial interval. Our method is based on a delicate analysis for the asymptotic character of the spectrum of the wave operator with x-dependent coefficients, and the spectral properties play an essential role in the proof.
Novel NiMoO4-integrated electrode materials were successfully prepared by solvothermal method using Na2MoO4·2H2O and NiSO4·6H2O as main raw materials, water, and ethanol as solvents. The morphology, phase, and structure of the as-prepared materials were characterized by SEM, XRD, Raman, and FT-IR. The electrochemical properties of the materials in supercapacitors were investigated by cyclic voltammetry, constant current charge–discharge, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy techniques. The effects of volume ratio of water to ethanol (W/E) in solvent on the properties of the product were studied. The results show that the pure phase monoclinic crystal NiMoO4 product can be obtained when the W/E is 2:1. The diameter and length are 0.1–0.3 µm and approximately 3 µm, respectively. As an active material for supercapacitor, the NiMoO4 nanorods material delivered a discharge specific capacitance of 672, 498, and 396 F/g at a current density of 4, 7, and 10 A/g, respectively. The discharge specific capacitance slightly decreased from 815 to 588 F/g with a retention of 72% after 1000 cycles at a current density of 1 A/g. With these superior capacitance properties, the novel NiMoO4 integrated electrode materials could be considered as promising material for supercapacitors.
In a rice (Oryza sativa L.)–wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) rotation system, a study was conducted to determine the effects of different fertilization regimens (no fertilization, replacement of a portion of chemical fertilizer with composted pig manure, chemical fertilizer only, and straw return combined with chemical fertilizer) on the weed communities and wheat yields after 4 and 5 yr. The impact of the long-term recurrent fertilization regimen initiated in 2010 on the composition and diversity of weed communities and the impact of the components and total amount of fertilizer on wheat yields were assessed in 2014 and 2015. Totals of 19 and 16 weed species were identified in experimental wheat fields in 2014 and 2015, respectively, but the occurrence of weed species varied according to the fertilization regimen. American sloughgrass [Beckmannia syzigachne (Steud.) Fernald], water starwort [Myosoton aquaticum (L.) Moench], and lyrate hemistepta (Hemistepta lyrata Bunge.) were adapted to all fertilization treatments and were the dominant weed species in the experimental wheat fields. The greatest number of weed species were observed under the no-fertilization treatment, in which 40% of the weed community was composed of broadleaf weeds and the lowest wheat yields were obtained. With fertilizer application, the number of weed species was reduced, the height of weeds increased significantly, the density of broadleaf weeds was significantly reduced, the biodiversity indices of weed communities decreased significantly, and higher wheat yields were obtained. Only the chemical fertilizer plus composted pig manure treatment and the chemical fertilizer–only treatment increased the density of grassy weeds and the total weed community density. The treatment with chemical fertilizer only also resulted in the highest density of B. syzigachne. Rice straw return combined with chemical fertilizer yielded the lowest total weed density, which suggests that it inhibited occurrence of weeds. The different fertilizer regimens not only affected the weed species composition, distribution, and diversity, but also the weed density. Our study provides new information from a rice–wheat rotation system on the relationship between soil amendments and agricultural weed infestation.
CrFeNiTix (x = 0.2, 0.3, 0.4, 0.5, and 0.6 molar ratio) compositionally complex alloys were fabricated by vacuum arc melting to investigate the microstructure, hardness, and compressive properties. The results revealed that CrFeNiTix alloys consisted of the principal face-centered cubic (FCC) phase and body-centered cubic (BCC) solid solution, with an amount of (Ni, Ti)-rich hexagonal close-packed phase. CrFeNiTix alloys exhibited the typical dendrite. Ti0.2 and Ti0.3 alloys were composed of FCC and BCC solid solutions in the dendrite, as well as ε (Ni3Ti) and R (Ni2.67Ti1.33) phases in the inter-dendrite, simultaneously. For Ti0.4, Ti0.5, and Ti0.6 alloys, (Fe, Cr)-rich solid solution separated out and ε phase transformed into R phase gradually. Meanwhile, TEM analysis indicated that Ti0.4 alloy matrix consisted of the principal FCC phase containing (Ni, Ti)-rich intragranular nanoprecipitates. The hardness values of CrFeNiTix alloys were increased with the addition of Ti content and the high compressive strength of CrFeNiTix alloys was maintained, which was attributed to the solid solution strengthening and precipitation hardening.
Research suggests an association between metabolic disorders, such as type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), and schizophrenia. However, the risk of metabolic disorders in the unaffected siblings of patients with schizophrenia remains unclear.
Using the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database, 3135 unaffected siblings of schizophrenia probands and 12,540 age-/sex-matched control subjects were included and followed up to the end of 2011. Individuals who developed metabolic disorders during the follow-up period were identified.
The unaffected siblings of schizophrenia probands had a higher prevalence of T2DM (3.4% vs. 2.6%, p = 0.010) than the controls. Logistic regression analyses with the adjustment of demographic data revealed that the unaffected siblings of patients with schizophrenia were more likely to develop T2DM (odds ratio [OR]: 1.39, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.10–1.75) later in life compared with the control group. Moreover, only female siblings of schizophrenia probands had an increased risk of hypertension (OR: 1.47, 95% CI: 1.07–2.01) during the follow-up compared with the controls.
The unaffected siblings, especially sisters, of schizophrenia probands had a higher prevalence of T2DM and hypertension compared with the controls. Our study revealed a familial link between schizophrenia and T2DM in a large sample. Additional studies are required to investigate the shared pathophysiology of schizophrenia and T2DM.