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Robot-assisted minimally invasive surgery (MIS) has shown tremendous advances over the traditional technique. A crucial challenge for developing a MIS robot is the kinematic design of the remote center-of-motion (RCM) mechanism. In this paper, a class of spatial RCM mechanism is analyzed. They are obtained by generating virtual parallelograms. The main process is to construct a line that passes through a fixed point under the mechanical constraint. The axis of the surgical tool is then constrained to parallel with that line. Hence, due to the geometrical feature of the parallel lines, the axis of the surgical tool will always pass through a fixed point, i.e., the RCM point. Due to the specially designed structure, the fixed point does not need to be physically belonging to the mechanism. The geometrical analysis method is employed to obtain the closed-form solution of the forward kinematics of the proposed mechanisms. Due to the high load capacity of parallel mechanism, the robots based on the proposed RCM mechanisms have promising applications as an external positioner to be used in robotic single-port surgeries.
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.
A new system for preparing 14C samples was established for a compact accelerator mass spectrometer (GXNU-AMS) at Guangxi Normal University. This sample preparation system consists of three units: a vacuum maintenance unit, a CO2 purification unit, and a CO2 reduction unit, all of which were made of quartz glass. A series of radiocarbon (14C) preparation experiments were conducted to verify the reliability of the system. The recovery rate of graphite obtained was more than 80%. The carbon content in the commercial toner and wood sample was linearly fitted to the CO2 pressure in the measurement unit of the system. The results showed a good linear relationship, indicating that the reliability of the sample preparation system. AMS measurements were conducted on a batch of standard, wood, and dead graphite samples prepared using this system. The results showed that the beam current of 12C- for each sample was more than 40 μA, the carbon contamination introduced during the sample preparation process was ∼ 2 × 10–15, and that the new sample preparation system is compact, low-contamination, and efficient and meets the GXNU-AMS requirements for 14C samples.
This study evaluated the association between inflammatory diets as measured by the dietary inflammatory index (DII), and inflammation biomarkers, and the development of preeclampsia among the Chinese population. We followed the reporting guidelines of the STROBE statement for observational studies. A total of 466 preeclampsia cases aged over 18 years were recruited between March 2016 and June 2019, and 466 healthy controls were 1:1 ratio matched by age (± 3 years), week of gestation (± 1 week), and gestational diabetes mellitus. The energy-adjusted DII (E-DII) was computed based on dietary intake assessed using a 79-item semiquantitative food frequency questionnaire (FFQ). Inflammatory biomarkers were analyzed by ELISA kits. The mean E-DII scores were -0.65 ± 1.58 for cases and -1.19 ± 1.47 for controls (P value <0.001). E-DII scores positively correlated with IFN-γ (rs = 0.194, P value = 0.001) and IL-4 (rs = 0.135, P value = 0.021). After multivariable adjustment, E-DII scores were positively related to preeclampsia risk (P trend <0.001). The highest tertile of E-DII was 2.18 times the lowest tertiles (95% CI = 1.52, 3.13). The odds of preeclampsia increased by 30% (95% CI= 18%, 43%, P value <0.001) for each E-DII score increase. The preeclampsia risk was positively associated with IL-2 (OR = 1.07, 95% CI = 1.03, 1.11), IL-4 (OR = 1.26, 95% CI = 1.03, 1.54) and TGF-β (OR = 1.17, 95% CI = 1.06, 1.29). Therefore, proinflammatory diets, corresponding to higher IL-2, IL-4 and TGF-β levels, were associated with increased preeclampsia risk.
Many waterflooding oil fields, injecting water into an oil-bearing reservoir for pressure maintenance, are in their middle to late stages of development. To explore the geological conditions and improve oilfield recovery of the most important well group of the Hu 136 block, located on the border areas of three provinces (Henan, Shandong, and Hebei), Zhongyuan Oilfield, Sinopec, central China, a 14C cross-well tracer monitoring technology was developed and applied in monitoring the development status and recognize the heterogeneity of oil reservoirs. The tracer response in the production well was tracked, and the water drive speed, swept volume of the injection fluid were obtained. Finally, the reservoir heterogeneity characteristics, such as the dilution coefficient, porosity, permeability, and average pore-throat radius, were fitted according to the mathematical model of the heterogeneous multi-layer inter-well theory. The 14C-AMS technique developed in this work is expected to be a potential analytical method for evaluating underground reservoir characteristics and providing crucial scientific guidance for the mid to late oil field recovery process.
Risk perception among nurses after the COVID-19 pandemic is a crucial factor affecting their attitudes and willingness to work in clinics. Those with poor psychological status could perceive risks sensitively as fears or threats that are discouraging. This article aimed to determine whether psychological outcomes, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety, and insomnia, following the COVID-19 pandemic were differentially related to the risk perceptions of nurses working in clinics and increased perceived risk.
The participants were 668 nurse clinicians from five local hospitals. Risk perceptions and psychological outcomes were measured by adapted questionnaires via the Internet. Latent profile analysis (LPA) identified subgroups of individuals who showed similar profiles regarding the perceived risks in nursing. Multinomial regression and probit regression were used to examine the extent to which sociodemographic and psychological outcomes predicted class membership.
LPA revealed four classes: groups with low-, mild-, moderate-, and high-level risk perceptions. Membership of the high-level risk perception class was predicted by the severity of psychological outcomes. Anxiety significantly accounted for a moderate increase in risk perceptions, while the symptoms of insomnia, depression, and PTSD accelerated the increase to the high level of risk perception class.
By classifying groups of nurse clinicians sharing similar profiles regarding risk perceptions and then exploring associated predictors, this study shows the psychological outcomes after COVID-19 significantly impacted pandemic-associated risk perceptions and suggests intervening in nurses' psychological outcomes while simultaneously focusing on work-related worries is important following the outbreak of COVID-19.
Routine Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) screening found one asymptomatic COVID-19 patient. An emergency sampling team was organized consisting of 1200 healthcare workers, and a total of 3.2228 million COVID-19 samples had been collected and detected. This study summarizes the on-site management experience in large-scale COVID-19 nucleic acid testing from various aspects: staff preparation, materials preparation, site layout, logistics support, and information system support. Suggestions are put forward for the deficiencies and parts needing improvement. Such as some sampling sites were not properly chosen, different areas were unclearly marked off from each other, and some site moving lines were confounding. How to communicate with the street service workers who had little professional knowledge on the epidemic spread or the working principles of the workflow and site layout. And the way to resolve conflicts on site.
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.
Grey matter (GM) reduction is a consistent observation in established late stages of schizophrenia, but patients in the untreated early stages of illness display an increase as well as a decrease in GM distribution relative to healthy controls (HC). The relative excess of GM may indicate putative compensatory responses, though to date its relevance is unclear.
343 first-episode treatment-naïve patients with schizophrenia (FES) and 342 HC were recruited. Multivariate source-based morphometry was performed to identify covarying ‘networks' of grey matter concentration (GMC). Neurocognitive scores using the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB) and symptom burden using the Positive and Negative Symptoms Scale (PANSS) were obtained. Bivariate linear relationships between GMC and cognition/symptoms were studied.
Compared to healthy subjects, FES had prominently lower GMC in two components; the first consists of the anterior insula, inferior frontal gyrus, anterior cingulate and the second component with the superior temporal gyrus, precuneus, inferior/superior parietal lobule, cuneus, and lingual gyrus. Higher GMC was seen in adjacent areas of the middle and superior temporal gyrus, middle frontal gyrus, inferior parietal cortex and putamen. Greater GMC of this component was associated with lower duration of untreated psychosis, less severe positive symptoms and better performance on cognitive tests.
In untreated stages of schizophrenia, both a distributed lower and higher GMC is observable. While the higher GMC is relatively modest, it occurs across frontoparietal, temporal and subcortical regions in association with reduced illness burden suggesting a compensatory role for higher GMC in the early stages of schizophrenia.
The tip leakage flow generates a large amount of aerodynamic losses in a zero inlet swirl turbine rotor (ZISTR), which directly uses the axial exit flow downstream of a combustion chamber without any nozzles. To reduce the tip leakage flow loss and improve the efficiency for the ZISTR, a front suction side winglet is employed on the blade tip, and the effect of winglet width is numerically investigated to explore its design space. It is found that, a suction side leading edge horseshoe vortex (SHV) on the blade tip plays a crucial role in mitigating the tip leakage flow loss. This SHV rotates in the reverse direction to the leakage vortex, so it tends to break the formation of the leakage vortex near the front part of suction side. With a larger winglet width, the SHV stays longer time on the blade tip and leaves it at a further downstream location. This increases the time and the contact area of the interaction between the SHV and the leakage vortex, so the leakage vortex is further weakened. Thus, the tip leakage flow loss is reduced, and the efficiency is improved. However, a larger winglet width also increases the heat load of the blade due to a larger blade surface area. The ZISTR designed with the winglet width equal to 2.1% blade pitch achieves a great trade-off between efficiency and heat load that the efficiency is improved by 0.85% at an expense of 1.2% increment of the heat load. Besides, for the blade using this winglet, the mechanical stress due to the centrifugal, aerodynamic and thermal load is acceptable for the engine application. This investigation indicates a great potential in the improvement of efficiency for the ZISTR using a blade tip winglet designed on the front suction side.
We investigated the drug resistance of Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates from patients with tuberculosis (TB) and HIV, and those diagnosed with only TB in Sichuan, China. TB isolates were obtained from January 2018 to December 2020 and subjected to drug susceptibility testing (DST) to 11 anti-TB drugs and to GeneXpert MTB/RIF testing. The overall proportion of drug-resistant TB (DR-TB) isolates was 32.1% (n = 10 946). HIV testing was not universally available for outpatient TB cases, only 29.5% (3227/10 946) cases had HIV testing results. The observed proportion of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) isolates was almost double than that of the national level, with approximately 1.5% and 0.1% of the isolates being extensively drug resistant and universally drug resistant, respectively. The proportions of resistant isolates were generally higher in 2018 and 2019 than in 2020. Furthermore, the sensitivities of GeneXpert during 2018–2020 demonstrated a downward trend (80.9, 95% confidence intervals (CI) 76.8–85.0; 80.2, 95% CI 76.4–84.1 and 75.4, 95% CI 70.7–80.2, respectively). Approximately 69.0% (7557/10 946) of the TB cases with DST results were subjected to GeneXpert detection. Overall, the DR-TB status and the use of GeneXpert in Sichuan have improved, but DR-TB challenges remain. HIV testing for all TB cases is recommended.
Metabolically healthy obesity (MHO) might be an alternative valuable target in obesity treatment. We aimed to assess whether alternative Mediterranean (aMED) diet and Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet were favourably associated with obesity and MHO phenotype in a Chinese multi-ethnic population. We conducted this cross-sectional analysis using the baseline data of the China Multi-Ethnic Cohort study that enrolled 99 556 participants from seven diverse ethnic groups. Participants with self-reported cardiometabolic diseases were excluded to eliminate possible reverse causality. Marginal structural logistic models were used to estimate the associations, with confounders determined by directed acyclic graph (DAG). Among 65 699 included participants, 11·2 % were with obesity. MHO phenotype was present in 5·7 % of total population and 52·7 % of population with obesity. Compared with the lowest quintile, the highest quintile of DASH diet score had 23 % decreased odds of obesity (OR = 0·77, 95 % CI 0·71, 0·83, Ptrend < 0·001) and 27 % increased odds of MHO (OR = 1·27, 95 % CI 1·10, 1·48, Ptrend = 0·001) in population with obesity. However, aMED diet showed no obvious favourable associations. Further adjusting for BMI did not change the associations between diet scores and MHO. Results were robust to various sensitivity analyses. In conclusion, DASH diet rather than aMED diet is associated with reduced risk of obesity and presents BMI-independent metabolic benefits in this large population-based study. Recommendation for adhering to DASH diet may benefit the prevention of obesity and related metabolic disorders in Chinese population.
To accurately predict propagation dynamics for single or multiple change propagations across different product development stages in a sequential or concurrent way is critical for decision-making of implementing change requests. In this paper, a change propagation dynamic model is built based on the compartmentalization of engineering entities into susceptible engineering entities and affected engineering entities (SA), the ordinary differential equations for describing the rate of affected entities with respect to the total ones and the duration for resolving all the changes for every moment are presented by combining the calculations of change impacts with different split and joint junctions. Considering the difficulty of finding analytical solutions to the differential equations, algorithms for sequential and concurrent simulations of change propagations across different development stages, and random and GA (Genetic Algorithm)-based optimal selections of feasible propagation paths are developed to obtain numerical solutions for single and multiple change requests. Simulation results show that change ripples and blossoms can be observed in both sequential and concurrent change propagations, and these propagation patterns are not sensitive to the initial change effect and the threshold value for propagations, while critical change propagation paths and the number of initiated changes have important effects on both concurrent and sequential change propagation process. It is also demonstrated that concurrent propagation strategy is advantageous for processing single or few of initiated changes since it can shorten product redevelopment time, sequential propagation strategy has an advantage of robustness for handling multiple initiated change requests.
The gut microbiota plays an important role in animals’ survival in their local environments. The intertidal rocky shore is a key interface of oceanic, atmospheric and terrestrial environments, and the transmission modes of microbes between an intertidal host and the environment are complex and largely ignored. In the present study, we characterized the gut microbiota of the intertidal snail Nerita yoldii, which is experiencing a northward range shift under the combined impacts of climate change and anthropogenic seascape transformation, and also determined the nearby environmental microbiota on the rock and in the seawater at five locations along the snail's distribution range in China. The gut microbial communities were significantly different from the environmental microbial communities, and the dominant phyla were Tenericutes, Cyanobacteria and Bacteroidetes, and Proteobacteria in the gut, rock and seawater microbial communities, respectively. At the genus level, Mycoplasma, with a relative abundance of 48.0 ± 10.2%, was the dominant genus in the gut microbial community, however, the relative abundances of this genus on the rock and in the water were low. These results imply that the gut microbial community of the intertidal snail N. yoldii is relatively independent from the environmental microbial community, and the dominant genus Mycoplasma in the gut, that is rare in the environment, can potentially assist the snail living in the harsh intertidal environment, especially at its northernmost distribution range edge.
This paper develops the conceptual design and error analysis of a cable-driven parallel robot (CDPR). The earlier error analysis of CDPRs generally regarded the cable around the pulley as a center point and neglected the radius of the pulleys. In this paper, the conceptual design of a CDPR with pulleys on its base platform is performed, and an error mapping model considering the influence of radius of the pulleys for the CDPR is established through kinematics analysis and a full matrix complete differential method. Monte Carlo simulation is adopted to deal with the sensitivity analysis, which can directly describe the contribution of each error component to the total orientation error of the CDPR by virtue of the error modeling. The results show that the sensitivity coefficients of pulleys’ geometric errors and geometric errors of the cables are relatively larger, which confirms that the cable length errors and pulleys’ geometric errors should be given higher priority in design and processing.
With differentiated tissues and organs, a high-level eukaryotic macroalga Lanceaphyton xiaojiangensis n. gen. n. sp. lived on the middle–late Ediacaran (ca. 560–551 Ma) seafloor in South China. Its body had a pith (perhaps mechanical tissue) and outer tissue (perhaps epidermis and/or cortex). The lance-like macroalga consists of an unbranching thallus that grew over the sediment surface for sunlight and a holdfast grown into sediments to keep the thallus fixed on the seafloor. The pithy stipe (lower thallus) might have served to support the upper pithless thallus for photosynthesis. The holdfast is composed of a tapering pithy rhizome growing down into the sediments, with many filamentous pithless rhizoids dispersedly growing within the sediments. With the differentiated tissues and organs, especially the pith accounting for about half of the width of the rhizome and stipe, Lanceaphyton n. gen. was a high-level eukaryotic macroalga, similar to phaeophytes in morphological features, but further research is needed on its microstructural details. The pithy macroalga shows that the macroalgal pith had emerged in the Ediacaran.
The southeastern Central Asian Orogenic Belt (CAOB) records the assembly process between several micro-continental blocks and the North China Craton (NCC), with the consumption of the Paleo-Asian Ocean (PAO), but whether the S-wards subduction of the PAO beneath the northern NCC was ongoing during Carboniferous–Permian time is still being debated. A key issue to resolve this controversy is whether the Carboniferous magmatism in the northern NCC was continental arc magmatism. The Alxa Block is the western segment of the northern NCC and contiguous to the southeastern CAOB, and their Carboniferous–Permian magmatism could have occurred in similar tectonic settings. In this contribution, new zircon U–Pb ages, elemental geochemistry and Sr–Nd isotopic analyses are presented for three early Carboniferous granitic plutons in the southwestern Alxa Block. Two newly identified aluminous A-type granites, an alkali-feldspar granite (331.6 ± 1.6 Ma) and a monzogranite (331.8 ± 1.7 Ma), exhibit juvenile and radiogenic Sr–Nd isotopic features, respectively. Although a granodiorite (326.2 ± 6.6 Ma) is characterized by high Sr/Y ratios (97.4–139.9), which is generally treated as an adikitic feature, this sample has highly radiogenic Sr–Nd isotopes and displays significantly higher K2O/Na2O ratios than typical adakites. These three granites were probably derived from the partial melting of Precambrian continental crustal sources heated by upwelling asthenosphere in lithospheric extensional setting. Regionally, both the Alxa Block and the southeastern CAOB are characterized by the formation of early Carboniferous extension-related magmatic rocks but lack coeval sedimentary deposits, suggesting a uniform lithospheric extensional setting rather than a simple continental arc.
Deficits in event-related potential (ERP) including duration mismatch negativity (MMN) and P3a have been demonstrated widely in chronic schizophrenia (SZ) but inconsistent findings were reported in first-episode patients. Psychotropic medications and diagnosis might contribute to different findings on MMN/P3a ERP in first-episode patients. The present study examined MMN and P3a in first episode drug naïve SZ and bipolar disorder (BPD) patients and explored the relationships among ERPs, neurocognition and global functioning.
Twenty SZ, 24 BPD and 49 age and sex-matched healthy controls were enrolled in this study. Data of clinical symptoms [Positive and Negative Symptoms Scale (PANSS), Young Manic Rating Scale (YMRS), Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAMD)], neurocognition [Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS), Cattell's Culture Fair Intelligence Test (CCFT), Delay Matching to Sample (DMS), Rapid Visual Information Processing (RVP)], and functioning [Functioning Assessment Short Test (FAST)] were collected. P3a and MMN were elicited using a passive auditory oddball paradigm.
Significant MMN and P3a deficits and impaired neurocognition were found in both SZ and BPD patients. In SZ, MMN was significantly correlated with FAST (r = 0.48) and CCFT (r = −0.31). In BPD, MMN was significantly correlated with DMS (r = −0.54). For P3a, RVP and FAST scores were significant predictors in SZ, whereas RVP, WAIS and FAST were significant predictors in BPD.
The present study found deficits in MMN, P3a, neurocognition in drug naïve SZ and BPD patients. These deficits appeared to link with levels of higher-order cognition and functioning.