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OBJECTIVE: Since December 2019, SARS-CoV-2 has been discovered in Wuhan and spread rapidly across China and worldwide. Characteristics of infected patients are needed to get insight into the full spectrum of the disease.
METHODS: Epidemiological and clinical information of 1738 diagnosed patients during February 7-26, 2020 in Wuhan Dongxihu Fangcang Hospital were analyzed. 709 patients were followed up on symptom, mental health, isolation site, and medication after discharge.
RESULTS: There were 852 males and 886 females in the cohort. The average age of the patients was 48.8 years. 79.98% of the patients were from Wuhan, Hubei province. The most common initial symptoms were fever, cough and shortness of breath. Among all the patients, 1463 had complications, with respiratory distress as the most common complication. The average duration of hospitalization was 15.95±14.69 days. The most common post-discharge symptom is cough. After discharge, most patients were full of energy, and chose hotel as their self-isolation site. COVID-19 Chinese medicine No.2 prescription is the medication used most commonly by the patients after discharge.
CONCLUSIONS: The population is generally susceptible to SARS-CoV-2. After receiving aggressive treatment of combined Chinese and Western medicine, most patients had a good prognosis and mental health after discharge.
Alligatorweed [Alternanthera philoxeroides (Mart.) Griseb.] is an invasive semi-aquatic weed that poses serious threats to agricultural production and ecological balance worldwide. However, genetic factors associated with the adaptation and invasion mechanisms of this species are limited. Screening for appropriate reference genes is important for gene expression and functional analysis research in A. philoxeroides. In this study, 30 candidate genes that showed stable expression in different A. philoxeroides tissues under various treatments in RNA-seq data were chosen to design qRT-PCR primers. After the amplification specificity validation, 25 candidates were selected and further evaluated in a diverse set of A. philoxeroides samples, including leaf, stem, and root tissues under drought, salinity, heat, chilling, five kinds of herbicides, and control treatments using qRT-PCR. The delta-CT method, geNorm, NormFinder, BestKeeper, and RefFinder algorithms were used to identify stable reference genes from A. philoxeroides samples. Overall, CoA, RFI2, Tubby, SRP19, and V-ATPase were the top five ideal reference genes in all organs and conditions. Tubby and CoA were the most stable reference genes in the leaf/stem, and RFI2, ERprr, and SPR19 were suitable reference genes for the roots. This work provided a foundation for exploring gene expression profiling of A. philoxeroides, especially those adaptation and invasion-related genes, which may help manage this invasive weed.
The impact of baseline hypertension status on the BMI–mortality association is still unclear. We aimed to examine the moderation effect of hypertension on the BMI–mortality association using a rural Chinese cohort.
In this cohort study, we investigated the incident of mortality according to different BMI categories by hypertension status.
Longitudinal population-based cohort
17,262 adults ≥18 years were recruited from July to August of 2013 and July to August of 2014 from a rural area in China.
During a median 6-year follow-up, we recorded 1109 deaths (610 with and 499 without hypertension). In adjusted models, as compared with BMI 22-24 kg/m2, with BMI ≤18, 18-20, 20-22, 24-26, 26-28, 28-30 and >30 kg/m2, the HRs (95% CI) for mortality in normotensive participants were 1.92 (1.23-3.00), 1.44 (1.01-2.05), 1.14 (0.82-1.58), 0.96 (0.70-1.31), 0.96 (0.65-1.43), 1.32 (0.81-2.14), and 1.32 (0.74-2.35) respectively, and in hypertensive participants were 1.85 (1.08-3.17), 1.67 (1.17-2.39), 1.29 (0.95-1.75), 1.20 (0.91-1.58), 1.10 (0.83-1.46), 1.10 (0.80-1.52), and 0.61 (0.40-0.94) respectively. The risk of mortality was lower in individuals with hypertension with overweight or obesity versus normal weight, especially in older hypertensives (≥60 years old). Sensitivity analyses gave consistent results for both normotensive and hypertensive participants.
Low BMI was significantly associated with increased risk of all-cause mortality regardless of hypertension status in rural Chinese adults, but high BMI decreased the mortality risk among individuals with hypertension, especially in older hypertensives.
We study the decay of compressible magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) turbulence, emphasizing exchanges of energy between compressive and incompressive kinetic energies, magnetic energy, and thermal energy. A recently developed high order finite difference code is employed for compressible runs with a Mach number up to 2. Varying the nature of the initial conditions (magnitudes of velocity and magnetic fluctuations), and initial Mach numbers permits examination of various dynamical regimes characterized here by the changes between different energy reservoirs. Acoustic waves are responsible for the oscillatory exchange between compressive kinetic and thermal energy through the pressure dilatation term. The results indicate that exchange between kinetic and magnetic energy is dominated by interactions involving the solenoidal velocity. Several systematic rapid adjustments are found to be reproducible with simple scalings derived from the empirical data.
Echinococcus granulosus sensu lato has complex defence mechanisms that protect it from the anti-parasitic immune response for long periods. Echinococcus granulosus cyst fluid (EgCF) is involved in the immune escape. Nevertheless, whether and how EgCF modulates the inflammatory response in macrophages remains poorly understood. Here, real-time polymerase chain reaction and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay revealed that EgCF could markedly attenuate the lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced production of pro-inflammatory factors including tumour necrosis factor-α, interleukin (IL)-12 and IL-6 but increase the expression of IL-10 at mRNA and protein levels in mouse peritoneal macrophages and RAW 264.7 cells. Mechanically, western blotting and immunofluorescence assay showed that EgCF abolished the activation of nuclear factor (NF)-κB p65, p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) and ERK1/2 signalling pathways by LPS stimulation in mouse macrophages. EgCF's anti-inflammatory role was at least partly contributed by promoting proteasomal degradation of the critical adaptor TRAF6. Moreover, the EgCF-promoted anti-inflammatory response and TRAF6 proteasomal degradation were conserved in human THP-1 macrophages. These findings collectively reveal a novel mechanism by which EgCF suppresses inflammatory responses by inhibiting TRAF6 and the downstream activation of NF-κB and MAPK signalling in both human and mouse macrophages, providing new insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying the E. granulosus-induced immune evasion.
Pre-harvest sprouting (PHS) induced by the absence of seed dormancy causes a severe reduction in crop yield and flour quality. In this study, we isolated and characterized TaABI4, an ABA-responsive transcription factor that participates in regulating seed germination in wheat. Sequence analysis revealed that TaABI4 has three homologues, located on chromosomes 1A/1B/1D. TaABI4 contains a conserved AP2 domain, and AP2-associated, LRP and potential PEST motifs. Putative cis-acting regulatory elements (CE1-like box, W-box, ABRE elements and RY elements) were identified in the TaABI4 promoter region that showed high conservation in 17 wheat cultivars and wheat-related species. Expression profiling of TaABI4 indicated that it is a seed-specific gene accumulating during the middle stages of seed development. Transcript accumulation of TaABI4 in wheat cultivar Chuanmai 32 (CM32, PHS susceptible) was 5.07-fold and 1.39-fold higher than that in synthetic hexaploidy wheat SHW-L1 (PHS resistant) at 15 and 20 DPA, respectively. Six expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL) of TaABI4 on chromosomes 2A, 2D, 3B and 4A were characterized based on the accumulated transcripts of TaABI4 in SHW-L1 and CM32-derived recombinant inbred lines. These QTLs explained 10.7 to 46.1% of the trait variation with 4.53–10.59 of LOD scores, which contain genes that may affect the expression of TaABI4.
Social cognition has not previously been assessed in treatment-naive patients with chronic schizophrenia, in patients over 60 years of age, or in patients with less than 5 years of schooling.
We revised a commonly used measure of social cognition, the Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test (RMET), by expanding the instructions, using both self-completion and interviewer-completion versions (for illiterate respondents), and classifying each test administration as ‘successfully completed’ or ‘incomplete’. The revised instrument (RMET-CV-R) was administered to 233 treatment-naive patients with chronic schizophrenia (UT), 154 treated controls with chronic schizophrenia (TC), and 259 healthy controls (HC) from rural communities in China.
In bivariate and multivariate analyses, successful completion rates and RMET-CV-R scores (percent correct judgments about emotion exhibited in 70 presented slides) were highest in HC, intermediate in TC, and lowest in UT (adjusted completion rates, 97.0, 72.4, and 49.9%, respectively; adjusted RMET-CV-R scores, 45.4, 38.5, and 34.6%, respectively; all p < 0.02). Stratified analyses by the method of administration (self-completed v. interviewer-completed) and by education and age (‘educated-younger’ v. ‘undereducated-older’) show the same relationship between groups (i.e. NC>TC>UT), though not all differences remain statistically significant.
We find poorer social cognition in treatment-naive than in treated patients with chronic schizophrenia. The discriminant validity of RMET-CV-R in undereducated, older patients demonstrates the feasibility of administering revised versions of RMET to patients who may otherwise be considered ineligible due to education or age by changing the method of test administration and carefully assessing respondents' ability to complete the task successfully.
High prevalence of insulin resistance (IR) has been reported in bipolar disorder (BD) patients. Importantly, impaired insulin sensitivity could modulate the course and treatment outcome in BD. Here, we hypothesized that insulin sensitivity could be potentially associated with the neurocognitive trajectory in euthymic BD. We aimed to examine differences in insulin sensitivity and executive function between BD patients and controls.
Sixty-two patients with BD receiving mood stabilizer treatment and 62 controls, matching age, sex, and body mass index, were recruited in this study. Insulin sensitivity was estimated using the homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR). The Wisconsin card-sorting test (WCST) was applied to test participants’ ability to shift cognitive set. Group differences were measured and multivariate regression analysis was performed to examine relationships among factors.
The results indicated that the HOMA-IR (P = .048) value in the patients with BD were significantly higher than those in controls. With regards to executive function, the BD patients performed significantly poorer than the control subjects (P < .05). Moreover, the interaction effect between BD diagnosis and HOMA-IR value on the WCST-preservation errors was significant (P = .01), and post-hoc analyses showed that the cognitive abilities were worse in the BD patients with a higher IR than in the others groups.
Insulin sensitivity is associated with the neurocognitive performance in euthymic BD patients. Although the underlying mechanisms remain unclear, interventions to improve insulin sensitivity could potentially improve the functional outcome of BD.
The hyper-function of the striatal dopamine system has been suggested to underlie key pathophysiological mechanisms in schizophrenia. Moreover, patients have been observed to present a significant elevation of dopamine receptor availability compared to healthy controls. Although it is difficult to measure dopamine levels directly in humans, neurochemical imaging techniques such as single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) provide indirect indices of in vivo dopamine synthesis and release, and putative synaptic levels.
We focused on the role of dopamine postsynaptic regulation using [123I] iodobenzamide (IBZM) SPECT. We compared D2/3 receptor availability between 53 healthy controls and 21 medication-naive patients with recent-onset schizophrenia.
The mean specific striatal binding showed no significant difference between patients and controls (estimated difference = 0.001; 95% CI −0.11 to 0.11; F = 0.00, df = 1, 69; p = 0.99). There was a highly significant effect of age whereby IBZM binding declined with advancing age [estimated change per decade of age = −0.01(binding ratio); 95% CI −0.01 to −0.004; F = 11.5, df = 1, 69; p = 0.001]. No significant correlations were found between the mean specific striatal binding and psychopathological or cognitive rating scores.
Medication-naïve patients with recent-onset schizophrenia have similar D2/3 receptor availability to healthy controls. We suggest that, rather than focusing exclusively on postsynaptic receptors, future treatments should target the presynaptic control of dopamine synthesis and release.
This chapter analyzes the progress that Chinese universities and public research institutes have made in the fields of research and education as well as the factors that hinder the growth of knowledge transfer from universities and public research institutes to firms in China. The chapter describes how the role of universities and public research institutes in China has evolved in recent decades with the transition to a market economy. It reviews the laws and policies governing knowledge transfer activities in China. It examines the various channels of knowledge transfer that universities and public research institutes in China use to transfer technology such as making new knowledge publicly available at no cost and through cooperative arrangements, including contract research and collaboration, licensing, and establishing spinoff enterprises. The chapter concludes that while Chinese universities and public research institutes have been dramatically transformed in order to meet government policy goals of producing cutting-edge scientific and technological developments to support economic and social advancement since the 1980s, there are challenges in the areas of limited licensing opportunities for leading technologies, lack of long-term financial support, ambiguous corporate governance and regulations, and underdeveloped intermediary agencies resulting in high transaction costs that remain to be addressed.
Previous studies have reported inverse associations between certain healthy lifestyle factors and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), but limited evidence showed the synergistic effect of those lifestyles. This study examined the relationship of a combination of lifestyles, expressed as Healthy Lifestyle Score (HLS), with NAFLD.
A community-based cross-sectional study. Questionnaires and body assessments were used to collect data on the six-item HLS (ranging from 0 to 6, where higher scores indicate better health). The HLS consists of non-smoking (no active or passive smoking), normal BMI (18·5–23·9 kg/m2), physical activity (moderate or vigorous physical activity ≥ 150 min/week), healthy diet pattern, good sleep (no insomnia or <6 months) and no anxiety (Self-rating Anxiety Scale < 50), one point each. NAFLD was diagnosed by ultrasonography.
Two thousand nine hundred and eighty-one participants aged 40–75 years.
The overall prevalence of NAFLD was 50·8 %. After adjusting for potential covariates, HLS was associated with lower presence of NAFLD. The OR of NAFLD for subjects with higher HLS (3, 4, 5–6 v. 0–1 points) were 0·68 (95 % CI 0·51, 0·91), 0·58 (95 % CI 0·43, 0·78) and 0·35 (95 % CI 0·25, 0·51), respectively (P-values < 0·05). Among the six items, BMI and physical activity were the strongest contributors. Sensitivity analyses showed that the association was more significant after weighting the HLS. The beneficial association remained after excluding any one of the six components or replacing BMI with waist circumference.
Higher HLS was associated with lower presence of NAFLD, suggesting that a healthy lifestyle pattern might be beneficial to liver health.
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.
Over recent decades, Chinese giant salamanders Andrias spp. have declined dramatically across much of their range. Overexploitation and habitat degradation have been widely cited as the cause of these declines. To investigate the relative contribution of each of these factors in driving the declines, we carried out standardized ecological and questionnaire surveys at 98 sites across the range of giant salamanders in China. We did not find any statistically significant differences between water parameters (temperature, dissolved oxygen, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, salinity, alkalinity, hardness and flow rate) recorded at sites where giant salamanders were detected by survey teams and/or had been recently seen by local respondents, and sites where they were not detected and/or from which they had recently been extirpated. Additionally, we found direct and indirect evidence that the extraction of giant salamanders from the wild is ongoing, including within protected areas. Our results support the hypothesis that the decline of giant salamanders across China has been primarily driven by overexploitation. Data on water parameters may be informative for the establishment of conservation breeding programmes, an initiative recommended for the conservation of these species.
Epidemic forecasting provides an opportunity to predict geographic disease spread and counts when an outbreak occurs and plays a key role in preventing or controlling their adverse impact. However, conventional prediction models based on complex mathematical modelling rely on the estimation of model parameters, which yields unreliable and unsustainable results. Herein, we proposed a simple model for predicting the epidemic transmission dynamics based on nonlinear regression of the epidemic growth rate and iterative methods, which is applicable to the progression of the COVID-19 outbreak under the strict control measures of the Chinese government. Our model yields reliable and accurate results as confirmed by the available data: we predicted that the total number of infections in mainland China would be 91 253, and the maximum number of beds required for hospitalised patients would be 62 794. We inferred that the inflection point (when the growth rate turns from positive to negative) of the epidemic across China would be mid-February, and the end of the epidemic would be in late March. This model is expected to contribute to resource allocation and planning in the health sector while providing a theoretical basis for governments to respond to future global health crises or epidemics.
As essential specifications of correlation domain for signal quality evaluation, distortions of the S-curve, including bias and slope distortions of the zero-crossing point, are usually selected as indicators of optimisation in the process of designing the channels of receivers or navigation satellites. Focusing on this issue, we present a detailed analysis of slope distortion in the presence of group delay and amplitude distortions. After validating the theoretical results, we present further discussions about the impacts of different group delay terms on slope distortions. The results indicate that both the odd-order and the even-order terms have impacts on the slope distortion, and higher odd-order terms have less slope distortion compared with the lower odd-order terms. These results are useful for evaluating the slope distortion from the group delay and guiding improvement in design of the channel.
In present study, we explored the effects and the underlying mechanisms of phospholipase C (PLC) mediating glucose-induced changes in intestinal glucose transport and lipid metabolism by using U-73122 (a PLC inhibitor). We found that glucose incubation activated the PLC signal and U-73122 pre-incubation alleviated the glucose-induced increase in plcb2, plce1 and plcg1 mRNA expression. Meanwhile, U-73122 pre-treatment blunted the glucose-induced increase in sodium/glucose co-transporters 1/2 mRNA and protein expressions. U-73122 pre-treatment alleviated the glucose-induced increase in TAG content, BODIPY 493/503 fluorescence intensity, lipogenic enzymes (glucose 6-phospate dehydrogenase (G6PD), 6-phosphogluconate dehydrogenase (6PGD), malic enzyme and fatty acid synthase (FAS)) activity and the mRNA expressions of lipogenic genes and related transcription factors (6pgd, g6pd, fas, acca, srebp1 and carbohydrate response element-binding protein (chrebp)) in intestinal epithelial cells of yellow catfish. Further research found that U-73122 pre-incubation mitigated the glucose-induced increase in the ChREBP protein expression and the acetylation level of ChREBP in HEK293T cells. Taken together, these data demonstrated that the PLC played a major role in the glucose-induced changes of glucose transport and lipid metabolism and provide a new perspective for revealing the molecular mechanism of glucose-induced changes of intestinal glucose absorption, lipid deposition and metabolism.
The high overall plant-based diet index (PDI) is considered to protect against type 2 diabetes in the general population. However, whether the PDI affects gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) risk among pregnant women is still unclear. We evaluated the association between PDI and GDM risk based on a Chinese large prospective cohort – the Tongji Maternal and Child Health Cohort. Dietary data were collected at 13–28 weeks of pregnancy by a validated semi-quantitative FFQ. The PDI was obtained by assigning plant food groups positive scores while assigning animal food groups reverse scores. GDM was diagnosed by a 75 g 2-h oral glucose tolerance test at 24–28 weeks of gestation. Logistic regression models were fitted to estimate OR of GDM, with associated 95 % CI, comparing women in different PDI quartiles. Among the total 2099 participants, 169 (8·1 %) were diagnosed with GDM. The PDI ranged from 21·0 to 52·0 with a median of 36·0 (interquartile range (IQR) 33·0–39·0). After adjusting for social-demographic characteristics and lifestyle factors etc., the participants with the highest quartile of PDI were associated with 57 % reduced odds of GDM compared with women in the lowest quartile of PDI (adjusted OR 0·43; 95 % CI 0·24, 0·77; Pfor trend = 0·005). An IQR increment in PDI was associated with 29 % decreased odds of GDM (adjusted OR 0·71; 95 % CI 0·56, 0·90). Findings suggest that adopting a plant-based diet during pregnancy could reduce GDM risk among Chinese women, which may be valuable for dietary counselling during pregnancy.
Previous studies suggested that a disturbance of the dopamine system underlies the pathophysiology of bipolar disorder (BD). In addition, the therapeutic action of medications for treating BD, such as valproate (VPA), might modulate dopamine system activity, but it remains unclear. Here, we aimed to investigate the role of the striatal dopamine transporter (DAT) in BD patients and in social defeat (SD) mice treated with VPA.
We enrolled community-dwelling controls (N = 18) and BD patients (N = 23) who were treated with VPA in a euthymic stage. The striatal DAT availabilities were approached by TRODAT-1 single photon emission computed tomography. We also established a chronic SD mouse model and treated mice with 350 mg/kg VPA for 3 weeks. Behavioral tests were administered, and striatal DAT expression levels were determined.
In humans, the level of striatal DAT availability was significantly higher in euthymic BD patients (1.52 ± 0.17 and 1.37 ± 0.23, p = 0.015). Moreover, the level of striatal DAT availability was also negatively correlated with the VPA concentration in BD patients (r = −0.653, p = 0.003). In SD mice, the expression of striatal DAT significantly increased (p < 0.001), and the SD effect on DAT expression was rescued by VPA treatment.
The striatal DAT might play a role in the pathophysiology of BD and in the therapeutic mechanism of VPA. The homeostasis of DAT might represent a new therapeutic strategy for BD patients.
Common vetch (Vicia sativa) is an important forage and green manure crop that is widely cultivated around the world. However, the large number of subspecies and accessions of common vetch has made taxonomic research on this species difficult. Pollen morphology data can provide important evidence in the study of plant phylogeny. Therefore, in this research, light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy were used to observe seven morphological traits of pollens from 22 common vetch accessions, and residual maximum likelihood and pattern analysis was conducted. The results showed that the pollen grains of the 22 accessions were all monad pollen and the polar view revealed three-lobed circular and triangular shapes, while the equatorial view mainly revealed an oblate shape; only one accession showed an oblate spherical shape. All accessions were 3-zonocolporate and the colpus length extended close to the poles. The polar axis length was (19.39 ± 0.97)–(42.12 ± 0.76) μm and the equatorial axis length was (35.97 ± 1.27)–(45.25 ± 0.81) μm. We found that qualitative traits of pollen shape, aperture polar view and ornamentation were highly stable. Among them, polar axis length, equatorial axis length and colpus length and width had significant differences among the accessions. The ratios of the equatorial and polar axes had significant differences among the subspecies. This trait information could be used for the classification and identification of common vetch accessions and subspecies.
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.