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Inflammation plays a crucial role in the pathogenesis of major depressive disorder (MDD) and bipolar disorder (BD). This study aimed to examine whether the dysregulation of complement components contributes to brain structural defects in patients with mood disorders.
A total of 52 BD patients, 35 MDD patients, and 53 controls were recruited. The human complement immunology assay was used to measure the levels of complement factors. Whole brain-based analysis was performed to investigate differences in gray matter volume (GMV) and cortical thickness (CT) among the BD, MDD, and control groups, and relationships were explored between neuroanatomical differences and levels of complement components.
GMV in the medial orbital frontal cortex (mOFC) and middle cingulum was lower in both patient groups than in controls, while the CT of the left precentral gyrus and left superior frontal gyrus were affected differently in the two disorders. Concentrations of C1q, C4, factor B, factor H, and properdin were higher in both patient groups than in controls, while concentrations of C3, C4 and factor H were significantly higher in BD than in MDD. Concentrations of C1q, factor H, and properdin showed a significant negative correlation with GMV in the mOFC at the voxel-wise level.
BD and MDD are associated with shared and different alterations in levels of complement factors and structural impairment in the brain. Structural defects in mOFC may be associated with elevated levels of certain complement factors, providing insight into the shared neuro-inflammatory pathogenesis of mood disorders.
Although attentional bias modification training (ABM) and cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) are two effective methods to decrease the symptoms of generalized anxiety disorders (GAD), to date, no randomized controlled trials have yet evaluated the effectiveness of an intervention combining internet-based cognitive behavioural therapy (ICBT) and ABM for adults with GAD.
This study aimed to investigate the effectiveness of an intervention combining ICBT and ABM for adults with GAD.
Sixty-three participants diagnosed with GAD were randomly assigned to the treatment group (ICBT with ABM; 31 participants) or the control group (ICBT with ABM placebo; 32 participants), and received 8 weeks of treatment and three evaluations. The CBT, ABM and ABM-placebo training were conducted via the internet. The evaluations were conducted at baseline, 8 weeks later, and 1 month later, respectively.
Both the treatment and control groups reported significantly reduced anxiety symptoms and attentional bias, with no clear superiority of either intervention. However, the treatment group showed a greater reduction in negative automatic thoughts than the control group after treatment and at 1-month follow-up (η2 = 0.123).
The results suggest that although not differing in therapeutic efficacy, the intervention combining ICBT and ABM is superior to the intervention combining ICBT and ABM-placebo in the reduction of negative automatic thoughts. ABM may be a useful augmentation of ICBT on reducing anxiety symptoms.
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) asymptomatic cases are hard to identify, impeding transmissibility estimation. The value of COVID-19 transmissibility is worth further elucidation for key assumptions in further modelling studies. Through a population-based surveillance network, we collected data on 1342 confirmed cases with a 90-days follow-up for all asymptomatic cases. An age-stratified compartmental model containing contact information was built to estimate the transmissibility of symptomatic and asymptomatic COVID-19 cases. The difference in transmissibility of a symptomatic and asymptomatic case depended on age and was most distinct for the middle-age groups. The asymptomatic cases had a 66.7% lower transmissibility rate than symptomatic cases, and 74.1% (95% CI 65.9–80.7) of all asymptomatic cases were missed in detection. The average proportion of asymptomatic cases was 28.2% (95% CI 23.0–34.6). Simulation demonstrated that the burden of asymptomatic transmission increased as the epidemic continued and could potentially dominate total transmission. The transmissibility of asymptomatic COVID-19 cases is high and asymptomatic COVID-19 cases play a significant role in outbreaks.
It is unclear whether the enhancing contact model (ECM) intervention is effective in reducing family caregiving burden and improving hope and quality of life (QOL) among family caregivers of persons with schizophrenia (FCPWS).
We conducted a cluster randomized controlled trial in FCPWS in eight rural townships in Xinjin, Chengdu, China. In total, 253 FCPWS were randomly allocated to the ECM, psychoeducational family intervention (PFI), or treatment as usual (TAU) group. FCPWS in three groups were assessed caregiving burden, QOL and state of hope at baseline (T0), post-intervention (T1), 3-month (T2), and 9-month (T3) follow-up, respectively.
Compared with participants in the TAU group, participants in the ECM group had statistically significantly lower caregiving burden scores both at T1 and T2 (p = 0.0059 and 0.0257, respectively). Compared with participants in the TAU group, participants in the PFI group had statistically significantly higher QOL scores in T1 (p = 0.0406), while participants in the ECM group had statistically significantly higher QOL scores in T3 (p = 0.0240). Participants in both ECM and PFI groups had statistically significantly higher hope scores than those in the TAU group at T1 (p = 0.0160 and 0.0486, respectively).
This is the first study to explore the effectiveness of ECM on reducing family caregiving burden and improving hope and QOL in rural China. The results indicate the ECM intervention, a comprehensive and multifaceted intervention, is more effective than the PFI in various aspects of mental wellbeing among FCPWS. Future research needs to confirm ECM's effectiveness in various population.
Older adults have been statistically proved to be at a higher risk of getting severely infected by the coronavirus COVID-19, evoking sweeping narratives of compassionate ageism surrounding them in different discourses. By analysing the media content, scholars from different areas have alerted us about the amplified ageism aroused by the pandemic crisis. However, we are still short of empirical evidence to learn how ageism is constructed in diverse sociocultural contexts in the wake of this global pandemic crisis. This study provides the case of Hong Kong to reflect on how ageism, as a set of social inequalities, is constructed. By examining 814 articles collected from the three most popular newspapers with different political orientations in Hong Kong, this study uses quantitative and qualitative content analysis to examine how older people have been generally represented. Then it further compares how these representations have been influenced by the media's liberal or conservative preferences. Third, it examines the relationship between the political orientation of newspapers and how different forms of ageism are constructed. The findings indicate that despite the liberal or conservative inclination of the three newspapers, they portray the older population as frail, dependent and deprived not only at the biomedical level but in all aspects of life. This study also reveals that the newspapers with a populist inclination in both camps have shown more hostile attitudes in representing compassionate ageism. In contrast, liberal and conservative-leaning media affirmed the government's dominant role in taking full responsibility for caring for the older population. The findings indicate that the polarised ageism frame cannot fully explain the underpinnings of ageism and implied policy processing in different contexts.
Neuroimaging studies in Wilson’s disease (WD) have identified various alterations in white matter (WM) microstructural organization. However, it remains unclear whether these alterations are localized to specific regions of fiber tracts, and what diagnostic value they might have. The purpose of this study is to explore the spatial profile of WM abnormalities along defined fiber tracts in WD and its clinical relevance.
Ninety-nine patients with WD (62 men and 37 women) and 91 age- and sex-matched controls (59 men and 32 women) were recruited to take part in experiments of diffusion-weighted imaging with 64 gradient vectors. The data were calculated by FMRIB Software Library (FSL) software and Automated Fiber Quantification (AFQ) software. After registration, patient groups and normal groups were compared by Mann–Whitney U test analysis.
Compared with the controls, the patients with WD showed widespread fractional anisotropy reduction and mean diffusivity, radial diffusivity elevation of identified fiber tracts. Significant correlations between diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) parameters and the neurological Unified Wilson’s Disease Rating Scale (UWDRS-N), serum ceruloplasmin, and 24-h urinary copper excretion were found.
The present study has provided evidence that the metrics of DTI could be utilized as a potential biomarker of neuropathological symptoms in WD. Damage to the microstructure of callosum forceps and corticospinal tract may be involved in the pathophysiological process of neurological symptoms in WD patients, such as gait and balance disturbances, involuntary movements, dysphagia, and autonomic dysfunction.
The role of dietary factors in osteoporotic fractures (OFs) in women is not fully elucidated. We investigated the associations between incidence of OF and dietary calcium, magnesium and soy isoflavone intake in a longitudinal study of 48 584 postmenopausal women. Multivariable Cox regression was applied to derive hazard ratios (HRs) and 95 % confidence intervals (CIs) to evaluate associations between dietary intake, based on the averages of two assessments that took place with a median interval of 2⋅4 years, and fracture risk. The average age of study participants is 61⋅4 years (range 43⋅3–76⋅7 years) at study entry. During a median follow-up of 10⋅1 years, 4⋅3 % participants experienced OF. Compared with daily calcium intake ≤400 mg/d, higher calcium intake (>400 mg/d) was significantly associated with about a 40–50 % reduction of OF risk among women with a calcium/magnesium (Ca/Mg) intake ratio ≥1⋅7. Among women with prior fracture history, high soy isoflavone intake was associated with reduced OF risk; the HR was 0⋅72 (95 % CI 0⋅55, 0⋅93) for the highest (>42⋅0 mg/d) v. lowest (<18⋅7 mg/d) quartile intake. This inverse association was more evident among recently menopausal women (<10 years). No significant association between magnesium intake and OF risk was observed. Our findings provide novel information suggesting that the association of OF risk with dietary calcium intake was modified by Ca/Mg ratio, and soy isoflavone intake was modified by history of fractures and time since menopause. Our findings, if confirmed, can help to guide further dietary intervention strategies for OF prevention.
Hyperhomocysteinaemia (HHcy) is associated with all-cause mortality in some disease states. However, the correlation between HHcy and the risk of mortality in the general population has rarely been researched. We aimed to evaluate the association between HHcy and all-cause and cause-specific mortality among adults in the USA. This study analysed data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey database (1999–2002 survey cycle). A multivariable Cox regression model was built to evaluate the correlation between HHcy and all-cause and cause-specific mortality. Smooth curve fitting was used to analyse their dose-dependent relationship. A total of 8442 adults aged 18–70 years were included in this study. After a median follow-up period of 14·7 years, 1007 (11·9 %) deaths occurred including 197 CVD-related deaths, 255 cancer-related deaths and fifty-eight respiratory disease deaths. The participants with HHcy had a 93 % increased risk of all-cause mortality (hazard ratio (HR) 1·93; 95 % CI (1·48, 2·51)), 160 % increased risk of CVD mortality (HR 2·60; 95 % CI (1·52, 4·45)) and 82 % increased risk of cancer mortality (HR 1·82; 95 % CI (1·03, 3·21)) compared with those without HHcy. For unmeasured confounding, E-value analysis proved to be robust. In conclusion, HHcy was associated with high risk of all-cause and cause-specific (CVD, cancer) mortality among adults aged below 70 years.
The selection of high-quality sperms is critical to intracytoplasmic sperm injection, which accounts for 70–80% of in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatments. So far, sperm screening is usually performed manually by clinicians. However, the performance of manual screening is limited in its objectivity, consistency, and efficiency. To overcome these limitations, we have developed a fast and noninvasive three-stage method to characterize morphology of freely swimming human sperms in bright-field microscopy images using deep learning models. Specifically, we use an object detection model to identify sperm heads, a classification model to select in-focus images, and a segmentation model to extract geometry of sperm heads and vacuoles. The models achieve an F1-score of 0.951 in sperm head detection, a z-position estimation error within ±1.5 μm in in-focus image selection, and a Dice score of 0.948 in sperm head segmentation, respectively. Customized lightweight architectures are used for the models to achieve real-time analysis of 200 frames per second. Comprehensive morphological parameters are calculated from sperm head geometry extracted by image segmentation. Overall, our method provides a reliable and efficient tool to assist clinicians in selecting high-quality sperms for successful IVF. It also demonstrates the effectiveness of deep learning in real-time analysis of live bright-field microscopy images.
The subduction model of the Neo-Tethys during the Early Cretaceous has always been a controversial topic, and the scarcity of Early Cretaceous magmatic rocks in the southern part of the Gangdese batholith is the main cause of this debate. To address this issue, this article presents new zircon U–Pb chronology, zircon Hf isotope, whole-rock geochemistry and Sr–Nd isotope data for the Early Cretaceous quartz diorite dykes with adakite affinity in Liuqiong, Gongga. Zircon U–Pb dating of three samples yielded ages of c. 141–137 Ma, indicating that the Liuqiong quartz diorite was emplaced in the Early Cretaceous. The whole-rock geochemical analysis shows that the Liuqiong quartz diorite is enriched in large-ion lithophile elements (LILEs) and light rare-earth elements (LREEs) and is depleted in high-field-strength elements (HFSEs), which are related to slab subduction. Additionally, the Liuqiong quartz diorite has high SiO2, Al2O3 and Sr contents, high Sr/Y ratios and low heavy rare-earth element (HREE) and Y contents, which are compatible with typical adakite signatures. The initial 87Sr/86Sr values of the Liuqiong adakite range from 0.705617 to 0.705853, and the whole-rock ϵNd(t) values vary between +5.78 and +6.24. The zircon ϵHf(t) values vary from +11.5 to +16.4. Our results show that the Liuqiong adakite magma was derived from partial melting of the Neo-Tethyan oceanic plate (mid-ocean ridge basalt (MORB) + sediment + fluid), with some degree of subsequent peridotite interaction within the overlying mantle wedge. Combining regional data, we favour the interpretation that the Neo-Tethyan oceanic crust was subducted at a low angle beneath the Gangdese during the Early Cretaceous.
This paper, in allusion to the limitations of traditional transfer alignment methods based on the external measurement equipment or the empirical model of angular deformation, proposes a rapid and accurate transfer alignment method without relying on the empirical angular deformation model. Firstly, the relationship between the actual angular deformation and the angular velocities measured by the gyroscopes in the master and slave inertial navigation systems (INSs) is derived to roughly estimate the angular deformation. Secondly, according to the error characteristics of gyroscopes, the error model of angular deformation is established. Thirdly, expanding the angular deformation error instead of the installation error angle, flexure angle and flexure angle rate into the state vector, a low-order transfer alignment filtering model independent of the empirical angular deformation model is established. The proposed method not only gets rid of the dependence on an empirical angular deformation model, but also realises the rapid and accurate initial alignment of the slave INS without adding any external measurement equipment. The simulations and experiments evidence the validity of the proposed transfer alignment method.
The association between executive dysfunction, brain dysconnectivity, and inflammation is a prominent feature across major psychiatric disorders (MPDs), schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and major depressive disorder. A dimensional approach is warranted to delineate their mechanistic interplay across MPDs.
This single site study included a total of 1543 participants (1058 patients and 485 controls). In total, 1169 participants underwent diffusion tensor and resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (745 patients and 379 controls completed the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test). Fractional anisotropy (FA) and regional homogeneity (ReHo) assessed structural and functional connectivity, respectively. Pro-inflammatory cytokine levels [interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-6, and tumor necrosis factor-α] were obtained in 325 participants using blood samples collected with 24 h of scanning. Group differences were determined for main measures, and correlation and mediation analyses and machine learning prediction modeling were performed.
Executive deficits were associated with decreased FA, increased ReHo, and elevated IL-1β and IL-6 levels across MPDs, compared to controls. FA and ReHo alterations in fronto-limbic-striatal regions contributed to executive deficits. IL-1β mediated the association between FA and cognition, and IL-6 mediated the relationship between ReHo and cognition. Executive cognition was better predicted by both brain connectivity and cytokine measures than either one alone for FA-IL-1β and ReHo-IL-6.
Transdiagnostic associations among brain connectivity, inflammation, and executive cognition exist across MPDs, implicating common neurobiological substrates and mechanisms for executive deficits in MPDs. Further, inflammation-related brain dysconnectivity within fronto-limbic-striatal regions may represent a transdiagnostic dimension underlying executive dysfunction that could be leveraged to advance treatment.
Ammannia multiflora Roxb. is a dominant broadleaf weed that is a serious problem in southern China rice fields, and acetolactate synthase (ALS)-inhibiting herbicides have been used for its control for more than 20 years. Excessive reliance on ALS-inhibiting herbicides has led to herbicide resistance in A. multiflora. In this study, 10 A. multiflora populations from the Jiangsu Province of China were collected, and the resistance levels and target site–resistance mechanisms to ALS-inhibiting herbicides bensulfuron-methyl and penoxsulam were investigated. The dose–response assays showed that eight populations evolved resistance to bensulfuron-methyl (9.1- to 90.9-fold) and penoxsulam (5.0- to 103.1-fold). Amplification of ALS genes indicated that there were three ALS genes (AmALS1, AmALS2, and AmALS3) in A. multiflora. Sequence analysis revealed amino acid mutations at Pro-197 in either AmALS1 (Pro-197-Ala, Pro-197-Ser, and Pro-197-His) or AmALS2 (Pro-197-Ser and Pro-197-Arg) in resistant populations, and no mutations were found in AmALS3. Moreover, two independent mutations (Pro-197-Ala in AmALS1 and Pro-197-Ser in AmALS2 or Pro-197-Ala in AmALS1 and Pro-197-Arg in AmALS2) coexisted in two resistant populations, respectively. In addition, the auxin mimic herbicides MCPA and florpyrauxifen-benzyl, the photosystem II inhibitor bentazon, and the protoporphyrinogen oxidase inhibitor carfentrazone-ethyl can effectively control the resistant A. multiflora populations. Our study demonstrates the wide prevalence of ALS inhibitor–resistant A. multiflora populations in Jiangsu Province and the diversity of Pro-197 mutations in ALS genes and provides alternative herbicide options for controlling resistant A. multiflora populations.
Little is known about how sociodemographic and clinical factors affect the caregiving burden of persons with schizophrenia (PwSs) with transition in primary caregivers.
This study aimed to examine the predictive effects of sociodemographic and clinical factors on the caregiving burden of PwSs with and without caregiver transition from 1994 to 2015 in rural China.
Using panel data, 206 dyads of PwSs and their primary caregivers were investigated in both 1994 and 2015. The generalised linear model approach was used to examine the predictive effects of sociodemographic factors, severity of symptoms and changes in social functioning on the caregiving burden with and without caregiver transition.
The percentages of families with and without caregiver transition were 38.8% and 61.2%, respectively. Among families without caregiver transition, a heavier burden was significantly related to a larger family size and more severe symptoms in PwSs. Deteriorated functioning of ‘social activities outside the household’ and improved functioning of ‘activity in the household’ were protective factors against a heavy caregiving burden. Among families with caregiver transition, younger age, improved marital functioning, deteriorated self-care functioning, and better functioning of ‘social interest or concern’ were significant risk factors for caregiving burden.
The effects of sociodemographic and clinical correlates on the caregiving burden were different among families with and without caregiver transition. It is crucial to explore the caregiver arrangement of PwSs and the risk factors for burden over time, which will facilitate culture-specific family interventions, community-based mental health services and recovery.
Athetis lepigone Möschler (Lepidoptera, Noctuidae) is a common maize pest in Europe and Asia. However, there is no long-term effective management strategy is available yet to suppress its population. Adults rely heavily on olfactory cues to locate their optimal host plants and oviposition sites. Pheromone-binding proteins (PBPs) are believed to be responsible for recognizing and transporting different odorant molecules to interact with receptor membrane proteins. In this study, the ligand-binding specificities of two AlepPBPs (AlepPBP2 and AlepPBP3) for sex pheromone components and host plant (maize) volatiles were measured by fluorescence ligand-binding assay. The results demonstrated that AlepPBP2 had a high affinity with two pheromones [(Z)-7-dodecenyl acetate, Ki = 1.11 ± 0.1 μM, (Z)-9-tetradecenyl acetate, Ki = 1.32 ± 0.15 μM] and ten plant volatiles, including (-)-limonene, α-pinene, myrcene, linalool, benzaldehyde, nonanal, 2-hexanone, 3-hexanone, 2-heptanone and 6-methyl-5-hepten-2-one. In contrast, we found that none of these chemicals could bind to AlepPBP3. Our results clearly show no significant differences in the functional characterization of the binding properties between AlepPBP2 and AlepPBP3 to sex pheromones and host plant volatiles. Furthermore, molecular docking was employed for further detail on some crucial amino acid residues involved in the ligand-binding of AlepPBP2. These findings will provide valuable information about the potential protein binding sites necessary for protein-ligand interactions which appear as attractive targets for the development of novel technologies and management strategies for insect pests.
Bladder cancer is the most common malignant tumour of the urinary system that is characterised by significant intra-tumoural heterogeneity. While large-scale sequencing projects have provided a preliminary understanding of tumour heterogeneity, these findings are based on the average signals obtained from the pooled populations of diverse cells. Recent advances in single-cell sequencing (SCS) technologies have been critical in this regard, opening up new ways of understanding the nuanced tumour biology by identifying distinct cellular subpopulations, dissecting the tumour microenvironment, and characterizing cellular genomic mutations. By integrating these novel insights, SCS technologies are expected to make powerful and meaningful changes to the current diagnosis and treatment of bladder cancer through the identification and usage of novel biomarkers as well as targeted therapeutics. SCS can discriminate complex heterogeneity in a large population of tumour cells and determine the key molecular properties that influence clinical outcomes. Here, we review the advances in single-cell technologies and discuss their applications in cancer research and clinical practice, with a specific focus on bladder cancer.