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The purpose of the current study was to research the factors influencing thyroid volume (TVOL) in 6–12-year-old children and update the reference values. A cross-sectional study was carried out in iodine-sufficient areas of four provinces in China. Urine, edible salt and drinking water samples were collected from children. Children’s height, weight and TVOL were measured. Ridge regression was used to screen variables for solving the multicollinearity problem. Quantile regression was used to analyse the relationship between the quantiles of TVOL and other variables. In total, 5653 children aged 6–12 years were enrolled in this study, including 2838 boys and 2815 girls. There was no significant difference in TVOL between boys and girls (P > 0·05). Spearman correlation analysis showed that total TVOL was positively correlated with age, height, weight, body surface area (BSA) and BMI, and the correlation coefficients were 0·616, 0·663, 0·669, 0·685 and 0·479, respectively. Among them, the correlation between TVOL and BSA was the strongest. According to the ridge regression results, age and BSA influenced TVOL, and the ridge regression coefficients were 0·13 and 0·94, respectively. Quantile regression further showed that age and BSA had significant influences on the whole TVOL distribution (P < 0·001). Therefore, the TVOL of children aged 6–12 years in China was mainly influenced by age and BSA, and reference values for TVOL of different genders based on age and BSA were established.
The aim of our study was to determine the distribution of hepatitis B virus (HBV) genotypes and subgenotypes in ethnic minorities in Yunnan province to provide evidence supporting the theoretical basis for hepatitis B prevention and control. We obtained serum samples and demographic data from 765 individuals reported by Yunnan province who had either acute or chronic HBV infection and were from one of 20 ethnic minority populations: Achang, Bai, Brown, Tibetan, Dai, Deang, Dulong, Hani, Hui, Jingpo, Lahu, Yi, Lisu Miao, Naxi, Nu, Pumi, Wa, Yao, or Zhuang people. We sequenced the HBV DNA and determined the genotypes and subgenotypes of the isolated HBVs. We mapped the genotype and subgenotype distribution by ethnic minority population and conducted descriptive analyses. There were four genotypes among the 20 ethnic groups: genotype B (21.3% of samples), C (76.6%), D (1.8%) and I (0.3%). The most common subgenotype was C1. There were no genotype differences by gender (P = 0.954) or age (P = 0.274), but there were differences by region (P < 0.001). There were differences in genotype distribution (P < 0.001) and subgenotype distribution (P = 0.011) by ethnic group. Genotype D was most prominent in Tibet and most HBV isolates were C/D recombinant viruses. The only two genotype I virus isolates were in Zhuang people. Susceptibility and geographic patterns may influence HBV prevalence in different ethnic populations, but additional research is needed for such a determination.
No relevant studies have yet been conducted to explore which measurement can best predict the survival time of patients with cancer cachexia. This study aimed to identify an anthropometric measurement that could predict the 1-year survival of patients with cancer cachexia. We conducted a nested case–control study using data from a multicentre clinical investigation of cancer from 2013 to 2020. Cachexia was defined using the Fearon criteria. A total of 262 patients who survived less than 1 year and 262 patients who survived more than 1 year were included in this study. Six candidate variables were selected based on clinical experience and previous studies. Five variables, BMI, mid-arm circumference, mid-arm muscle circumference, calf circumference and triceps skin fold (TSF), were selected for inclusion in the multivariable model. In the conditional logistic regression analysis, TSF (P = 0·014) was identified as a significant independent protective factor. A similar result was observed in all patients with cancer cachexia (n 3084). In addition, a significantly stronger positive association between TSF and the 1-year survival of patients with cancer cachexia was observed in participants aged > 65 years (OR: 0·94; 95 % CI 0·89, 0·99) than in those aged ≤ 65 years (OR: 0·96; 95 % CI 0·93, 0·99; Pinteraction = 0·013) and in participants with no chronic disease (OR: 0·92; 95 % CI 0·87, 0·97) than in those with chronic disease (OR: 0·97; 95 % CI 0·94, 1·00; Pinteraction = 0·049). According to this study, TSF might be a good anthropometric measurement for predicting 1-year survival in patients with cancer cachexia.
Cystic echinococcosis (CE) occurs in the intermediate host's liver, assuming a bladder-like structure surrounded by the host-derived collagen capsule mainly derived from activated hepatic stellate cells (HSCs). However, the effect of CE on liver natural killer (NK) cells and the potential of transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) signalling inhibition on alleviating CE-related liver damage remain to be explored. Here, by using the CE-mouse model, we revealed that the inhibitory receptors on the surface of liver NK cells were up-regulated, whereas the activating receptors were down-regulated over time. TGF-β1 secretion was elevated in liver tissues and mainly derived from macrophages. A combination of TGF-β signalling inhibitors SB525334 and pirfenidone could reduce the expression of TGF-β1 signalling pathway-related proteins and collagen production. Based on the secretion of TGF-β1, only the pirfenidone group showed a depressing effect. Also, the combination of SB525334 and pirfenidone exhibited a higher potential in effectively alleviating the senescence of the hepatocytes and restoring liver function. Together, TGF-β1 may be a potential target for the treatment of CE-associated liver fibrosis.
β-Glucan has been reported for its health benefits on blood lipids in hypercholesterolaemic individuals for years. However, people have paid little attention to the effects of β-glucan in populations with mild hypercholesterolaemia as well as the various delivering matrices. Our objective was to perform a meta-analysis to analyse the effects of β-glucan with different delivering matrices in mildly hypercholesterolaemic individuals. After conducting a comprehensive search in Web of Science, PubMed, Scopus and Cochrane Library, a total of twenty-one randomised controlled trials involving 1120 participants were identified to measure the pooled effect. The overall results indicated that consuming a dose of ≥3 g/d of β-glucan for at least 3 weeks could significantly reduce total cholesterol (TC) (−0·27 mmol/l, 95 % CI −0·33, −0·21, P < 0·001) and LDL-cholesterol (−0·26 mmol/l, 95% CI −0·32, −0·20, P < 0·001) compared with the control group in mildly hypercholesterolaemic individuals, while no significant difference was observed in TAG (−0·03 mmol/l, 95% CI −0·11, 0·06, P = 0·521) and HDL-cholesterol (0·01 mmol/l, 95% CI −0·03, 0·04, P = 0·777). There was evidence for modest unexplained heterogeneity in the meta-analysis. In conclusion, β-glucan can significantly reduce risk factors like TC and LDL-cholesterol for CVD in mildly hypercholesterolaemic individuals; furthermore, it appears that the effects of food matrices with both ‘solid products’ and ‘liquid products’ where β-glucan was incorporated into were ranked as the best way to exert its beneficial properties, while ‘liquid’ and ‘solid’ products were ranked as the second and third positions, respectively.
To evaluate the upper airway morphology changes associated with ageing in adult Chinese patients with obstructive sleep apnoea.
A total of 124 male patients diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnoea by overnight polysomnography, who underwent upper airway computed tomography, were enrolled. The linear dimensions, cross-sectional area and volume of the upper airway region and the surrounding bony frame were measured. The association between ageing and upper airway morphology was analysed.
Soft palate length, minimum cross-sectional area of the retroglossal region, lateral dimensions at the minimum cross-sectional area of the retropalatal and retroglossal regions, nasopharyngeal volume, and average cross-sectional area of the nasopharyngeal region were found to significantly increase with ageing in all patients, while the upper airway shape flattened with ageing. The volume of the retropalatal region increased with ageing among the patients with a body mass index of less than 24 kg/m2. The volume of parapharyngeal fat pad increased with ageing among patients with a body mass index greater than 28 kg/m2.
A number of dimensional, cross-sectional and volumetric parameters of the pharynx increased with age, indicating that non-anatomical factors may play a more important role in the pathogenesis of obstructive sleep apnoea in aged patients.
The microbiota–gut–brain axis, especially the microbial tryptophan (Trp) biosynthesis and metabolism pathway (MiTBamp), may play a critical role in the pathogenesis of major depressive disorder (MDD). However, studies on the MiTBamp in MDD are lacking. The aim of the present study was to analyze the gut microbiota composition and the MiTBamp in MDD patients.
We performed shotgun metagenomic sequencing of stool samples from 26 MDD patients and 29 healthy controls (HCs). In addition to the microbiota community and the MiTBamp analyses, we also built a classification based on the Random Forests (RF) and Boruta algorithm to identify the gut microbiota as biomarkers for MDD.
The Bacteroidetes abundance was strongly reduced whereas that of Actinobacteria was significantly increased in the MDD patients compared with the abundance in the HCs. Most noteworthy, the MDD patients had increased levels of Bifidobacterium, which is commonly used as a probiotic. Four Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) orthologies (KOs) (K01817, K11358, K01626, K01667) abundances in the MiTBamp were significantly lower in the MDD group. Furthermore, we found a negative correlation between the K01626 abundance and the HAMD scores in the MDD group. Finally, RF classification at the genus level can achieve an area under the receiver operating characteristic curve of 0.890.
The present findings enabled a better understanding of the changes in gut microbiota and the related Trp pathway in MDD. Alterations of the gut microbiota may have the potential as biomarkers for distinguishing MDD patients form HCs.
Just by their names, the concepts of Open Strategy (OS) and Strategic Openness (SO) seem to have a lot in common – at the very least, they both constitute equally viable outcomes in a forced relationship technique exercise using the words “open” and “strategy.” Indeed, authors on both topics would arguably agree that both concepts somehow deal with behavior that has to do with strategy and in which certain aspects are open, with “open” implying at least a partial reduction of access restrictions (also see, e.g., OED Online, 2013). More precisely, Open Strategy is defined as an inclusive and transparent way to develop and enact strategy (Tavakoli et al., 2015), and Strategic Openness as how firms voluntarily forfeit control over their resources (Alexy et al., 2018).
Suicidal behaviours in adolescents are prevalent and multifactorial. This study was conducted to examine the associations between exposure to suicide attempt (ESA) or suicide death (ESD) and suicidal behaviours in a large sample of Chinese adolescents.
Participants included for the analysis were 11 831 adolescent students who participated in the baseline survey of the Shandong Adolescent Behavior and Health Cohort (SABHC). Participants were sampled from five middle and three high schools in three counties of Shandong province, China. A self-administered structured questionnaire was used to collect data on demographics, behavioural and emotional problems, family environment, suicidal behaviours (suicidal thought, plan and attempt), and history of ESA or death of a family member, relative, friend or close acquaintance. Based on the sources of exposure, the participants were divided into four groups: non-exposure, exposure from relatives only, exposure from friends/close acquaintances only (EFO) and exposure from both relatives and friends (ERF). Logistic regressions were used to examine the associations between ESA or ESD and suicidal behaviours.
Mean age of the participants was 14.97 ± 1.46 years and 50.9% were boys. Of the participants, 9.4% reported having ESA, and 6.6% reported having ESD. The prevalence rates of suicidal behaviours were significantly higher in adolescents who had been exposed to suicide attempt or death than those who had not. Multivariate logistic regressions showed that ESA and ESD were both significantly associated with increased risks of suicidal thought (ESA: OR = 1.96, 95% CI = 1.66–2.31; ESD: OR = 1.59, 95% CI = 1.31–1.94), plan (ESA: OR = 2.37, 95% CI = 1.84–3.05; ESD: OR = 1.62, 95% CI = 1.18–2.23) and attempt (ESA: OR = 2.73, 95% CI = 1.92–3.89; ESD: OR = 1.82, 95% CI = 1.18–2.82), respectively. When participants were exposed to suicide attempt, ERF and EFO groups had significantly higher risks of suicidal thought (ERF: OR = 2.61, 95% CI = 1.28–1.64; EFO: OR = 1.96, 95% CI = 1.64–2.36), plan (ERF: OR = 3.72, 95% CI = 2.04–6.78; EFO: OR = 2.31, 95% CI = 1.74–3.01) and attempt (ERF: OR = 4.83, 95% CI = 2.30–10.17; EFO: OR = 2.57, 95% CI = 1.73–3.81), respectively.
ESA or ESD was associated with increased risks of suicidal behaviours in adolescents. Exposure to suicidal behaviours of relatives and friends/close acquaintances appeared to have different influence on adolescent suicidal behaviours. Further research is warranted to examine the biological and psychosocial mechanisms between suicidal exposure and subsequent suicidal behaviours in adolescents.
The chemical and mineralogical compositions, the pore-diameter distribution, and the X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, thermogravimetric analysis and infrared spectroscopy of kaolin from Suzhou, China, and the physicochemical and catalytic properties of a catalyst prepared from that kaolin, are presented in this paper. Crystallized microspheres (CMR) containing ~30% NaY zeolite can be prepared from the Suzhou kaolin. The catalyst produced performs better than a standard commercial catalyst in terms of activity, attrition resistance, resistance to passivation by Ni and V and better gasoline and coke selectivity.
The Wuhan Pre/Post-Natal Twin Birth Registry (WPTBR) is one of the largest twin birth registries with comprehensive medical information in China. It recruits women from the first trimester of pregnancy and their twins from birth. From January 2006 to May 2016, the total number of twins enrolled in WPTBR is 13,869 twin pairs (27,553 individuals). The WPTBR initiated the Wuhan Twin Birth Cohort (WTBC). The WTBC is a prospective cohort study carried out through incorporation of three samples. The first one comprises 6,920 twin pairs, and the second one, 6,949 twin pairs. Both are population-based samples linked to the WPTBR and include pre- and post-natal information from WPTBR. The second sample includes neonatal blood spots as well. Using a hospital-based approach, we recently developed a third sample with a target enrolment of 1,000 twin pairs and their mothers. These twins are invited, via their parents, to participate in a periodic health examination from the first trimester of pregnancy to 18 years. Biological samples are collected initially from the mother, including blood, urine, cord blood, cord, amniotic fluid, placenta, breast milk and meconium, and vaginal secretions, and later from the twins, including meconium, stool, urine, and blood. This article describes the design, recruitment, follow-up, data collection, and measures, as well as ongoing and planned analyses at the WTBC. The WTBC offers a unique opportunity to follow women from prenatal to postnatal, as well as follow-up of their twins. This cohort study will expand the understanding of genetic and environmental influences on pregnancy and twins’ development in China.
Little published information is available related to seed germination and seedling establishment of Asia Minor bluegrass, a problematic grass weed in some regions of China. The objective of this study was to examine the effects of different environmental factors on Asia Minor bluegrass seed germination. The optimum temperature for germination was around 10 to 20 C, and more than 90% of seeds germinated under 20/10 and 25/15 C temperature regimes. Also, light and pH did not appear to have any effect on seed germination. Asia Minor bluegrass was sensitive to osmotic stress, but tolerant of NaCl. No seedlings emerged when seeds were buried 4 cm deep. The result suggested that Asia Minor bluegrass has the potential to spread into a large area in China. To prevent its spreading, measures such as soil cultivation can be used to limit seed germination from increased burial depth and/or nonselective herbicides can be applied to kill early-germinating weed seedlings in late summer.
Research was conducted to establish a method to investigate the resistance level of flixweed to tribenuron-methyl and the evolved biochemical resistance mechanism. Four resistant biotypes were collected from wheat fields in Mazhuangcun, Jiacun, Dishangcun, and Bafangcun in the Hebei province of China where tribenuron-methyl had been continuously used for more than 10 yr. Two susceptible biotypes were collected from wheat fields where tribenuron-methyl was never applied. Different biotypes were assessed by petri-dish bioassay, whole-plant bioassay, and acetolactate synthase (ALS) assay. Comparisons of data indicated a similarity between methods and that experiments demonstrated that petri-dish bioassay was a feasible method to identify flixweed resistant to tribenuron-methyl. Data indicated differences among the flixweed biotypes when assessed by the petri-dish bioassay, whole-plant bioassay, or ALS enzyme assay, and a close association was obtained for the three bioassay methods. ALS resistance varied by biotypes with Mazhuangcun > Jiacun > Dishangcun > Bafangcun. Target-site enzyme assay data indicated that the resistant biotype's enhanced ALS activity was the biochemical mechanism that induced flixweed's evolved resistance to tribenuron-methyl. The concentrations of tribenuron-methyl causing 50% inhibition of ALS activity of the four resistant biotypes were 1,359, 513, 184, and 164 nM; in the susceptible biotypes these concentrations were 64 and 65 nM. Resistance indexes were 21, 8, 3, and 3 for Mazhuangcun, Jiacun, Dishangcun, and Bafangcun biotypes, respectively.
New specimens of the arthropod Pectocaris Hou, 1999 have yielded important new information. The entire body of Pectocaris spatiosa Hou, 1999 is known. Odaraia? eurypetala Hou and Sun, 1988 is transferred to Pectocaris. In addition to the finlike lateral flukes, setal imprints and new specimen indicate a median fluke as in the Burgess Shale Odaraia. The cephalic region bears stalked eyes and the crustacean characteristics first and second antennae and mandibles. The mandibles are succeeded by about 53 pairs of branchiopod-type appendages, each corresponding to a head or body segment. Branchiopod characters include endites with setae turned backwards, the elongation of the telson, and its fluke-shaped rami. Pectocaris has a fairly basal position in the phylogenetic tree of the extant crustaceans and probably belongs to the branchiopod crustaceans. It is the first arthropod with definite crustacean characteristics described from strata from below the Upper Cambrian.
In recent decades, in silico absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion (ADME), and toxicity (T) modelling as a tool for rational drug design has received considerable attention from pharmaceutical scientists, and various ADME/T-related prediction models have been reported. The high-throughput and low-cost nature of these models permits a more streamlined drug development process in which the identification of hits or their structural optimization can be guided based on a parallel investigation of bioavailability and safety, along with activity. However, the effectiveness of these tools is highly dependent on their capacity to cope with needs at different stages, e.g. their use in candidate selection has been limited due to their lack of the required predictability. For some events or endpoints involving more complex mechanisms, the current in silico approaches still need further improvement. In this review, we will briefly introduce the development of in silico models for some physicochemical parameters, ADME properties and toxicity evaluation, with an emphasis on the modelling approaches thereof, their application in drug discovery, and the potential merits or deficiencies of these models. Finally, the outlook for future ADME/T modelling based on big data analysis and systems sciences will be discussed.
Designing and testing flight control algorithms for quadrotor UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) is not an easy task due to the risk of possible danger and damage during the practical flight. In order to improve the safety and efficiency of the flight control implementation, a low-cost real-time HILS (hardware-in-the-loop simulation) testbed for quadrotor UAVs is developed in this paper. To realize the HILS testbed, a miniature quadrotor is used as the main body, equipped with a micro AHRS (attitude heading reference system) unit and a self-build DSP (digital signal processor) board. The HILS is implemented by using xPC target. A compact PC/104 computer is utilized as the target computer, and a laptop PC is employed as the host computer. A desktop PC is used as flight visualization computer which runs FlightGear and Google Earth to show visual data, such as orientation and flight path of the quadrotor UAV. This testbed can be utilized for simulating various flight control algorithms, without losing safeness and reliableness. To demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed testbed, a new nonlinear adaptive sliding mode based stabilization control algorithm is developed and verified on the HILS testbed.
The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of lutein and lycopene supplementation on carotid artery intima–media thickness (CAIMT) in subjects with subclinical atherosclerosis. A total of 144 subjects aged 45–68 years were recruited from local communities. All the subjects were randomly assigned to receive 20 mg lutein/d (n 48), 20 mg lutein/d+20 mg lycopene/d (n 48) or placebo (n 48) for 12 months. CAIMT was measured using Doppler ultrasonography at baseline and after 12 months, and serum lutein and lycopene concentrations were determined using HPLC. Serum lutein concentrations increased significantly from 0·34 to 1·96 μmol/l in the lutein group (P< 0·001) and from 0·35 to 1·66 μmol/l in the combination group (P< 0·001). Similarly, serum lycopene concentrations increased significantly from 0·18 to 0·71 μmol/l in the combination group at month 12 (P< 0·001), whereas no significant change was observed in the placebo group. The mean values of CAIMT decreased significantly by 0·035 mm (P= 0·042) and 0·073 mm (P< 0·001) in the lutein and combination groups at month 12, respectively. The change in CAIMT was inversely associated with the increase in serum lutein concentrations (P< 0·05) in both the active treatment groups and with that in serum lycopene concentrations (β = − 0·342, P= 0·031) in the combination group. Lutein and lycopene supplementation significantly increased the serum concentrations of lutein and lycopene with a decrease in CAIMT being associated with both concentrations. In addition, the combination of lutein and lycopene supplementation was more effective than lutein alone for protection against the development of CAIMT in Chinese subjects with subclinical atherosclerosis, and further studies are needed to confirm whether synergistic effects of lutein and lycopene exist.
It has been systematically investigated about the magnetic properties of the composite and single-phase SrFe12O19 prepared with the precursor of different Fe3+/Sr2+ molar ratios of 12:1, 11:1 and 10:1, respectively. With increasing the calcinations temperature, the coercivity of all samples decreases which can be determined by the stress model. The δm(H) results indicate that the intergrain exchangecoupling interaction exists both in composite and in single-phase SrFe12O19, resulting in the remanence magnetization enhancement, and the magnetostatic interaction become dominant in the samples with higher calcinations temperatures. The irreversible susceptibilities χirr(H) curves show that there may exhibit the exchange-spring behavior in the composite SrFe12O19 with more soft magnetic γ-Fe2O3, and the irreversible switching field may be qualitatively used to determine the coercivity magnitude.