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  • 1
    Publication Date: 2018-09-15
    Description: Complex, three-dimensional (3D) mesostructures that incorporate advanced, mechanically active materials are of broad, growing interest for their potential use in many emerging systems. The technology implications range from precision-sensing microelectromechanical systems, to tissue scaffolds that exploit the principles of mechanobiology, to mechanical energy harvesters that support broad bandwidth operation. The work presented here introduces strategies in guided assembly and heterogeneous materials integration as routes to complex, 3D microscale mechanical frameworks that incorporate multiple, independently addressable piezoelectric thin-film actuators for vibratory excitation and precise control. The approach combines transfer printing as a scheme for materials integration with structural buckling as a means for 2D-to-3D geometric transformation, for designs that range from simple, symmetric layouts to complex, hierarchical configurations, on planar or curvilinear surfaces. Systematic experimental and computational studies reveal the underlying characteristics and capabilities, including selective excitation of targeted vibrational modes for simultaneous measurements of viscosity and density of surrounding fluids. The results serve as the foundations for unusual classes of mechanically active 3D mesostructures with unique functions relevant to biosensing, mechanobiology, energy harvesting, and others.
    Electronic ISSN: 2375-2548
    Topics: Natural Sciences in General
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2018-06-20
    Description: Objectives We aimed to evaluate the relation of total homocysteine (tHcy) concentrations with systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) levels, and examine the possible modifiers in the association among a general population of Chinese adults. Design A cross-sectional study. Setting The study was conducted within 21 communities in Lianyungang of Jiangsu province, China. Participants A total of 26 648 participants aged ≥35 years and with no antihypertensive drug use were included in the final analysis. Results Overall, there was a positive association between tHcy concentrations and SBP (per 5 μmol/L tHcy increase: adjusted β=0.45 mm Hg; 95% CI 0.29 to 0.61) or DBP levels (per 5 μmol/L tHcy increase: adjusted β=0.47 mm Hg; 95% CI 0.35 to 0.59). Compared with participants with tHcy 〈10 μmol/L, significantly higher SBP levels were found in those with tHcy concentrations of 10 to 〈15 (adjusted β=0.80 mm Hg; 95% CI 0.32 to 1.28) and ≥15 µmol/L (adjusted β=1.79 mm Hg; 95% CI 1.20 to 2.37; p for trend 〈0.001). Consistently, significantly higher DBP levels were found in participants with tHcy concentrations of 10 to 〈15 (adjusted β=0.86 mm Hg; 95% CI 0.49 to 1.22) and ≥15 µmol/L (adjusted β=2.01 mm Hg; 95% CI 1.57 to 2.46; p for trend 〈0.001), respectively as compared with those with 〈10 μmol/L. Furthermore, a stronger association between tHcy and SBP (p for interaction=0.009) or DBP (p for interaction=0.067) was found in current alcohol drinkers. Conclusion Serum tHcy concentrations were positively associated with both SBP and DBP levels in a general Chinese adult population. The association was stronger in current alcohol drinkers.
    Keywords: Open access, Epidemiology
    Electronic ISSN: 2044-6055
    Topics: Medicine
    Published by BMJ Publishing
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2018-04-24
    Description: Interleukin-10 (IL-10)-producing regulatory B (Breg) cells were found to be induced in a variety of infectious diseases. However, its importance in the regulation of immune response to malaria is still unclear. Here, we investigated the dynamics, phenotype, and function of Breg cells using Plasmodium chabaudi chabaudi AS-infected C57BL/6 and BALB/c mice. BALB/c mice were more susceptible to infection and had a stronger IL-10 response in spleen than C57BL/6 mice. Analysis of the surface markers of IL-10-producing cells with flow cytometry showed that CD19 + B cells were one of the primary IL-10-producing populations in P. c. chabaudi AS-infected C57BL/6 and BALB/c mice, especially in the latter one. The Breg cells had a heterogeneous phenotype which shifted during infection. The well-established Breg subset, CD19 + CD5 + CD1d hi cells, accounted for less than 20% of IL-10-producing B cells in both strains during the course of infection. Most Breg cells were IgG + and CD138 – from day 0 to day 8 postinfection. Adoptive transfer of Breg cells to C57BL/6 mice infected with P. c. chabaudi AS led to a transient increase of parasitemia without an impact on survival rate. Our finding reveals that B cells play an active and important regulatory role in addition to mediating humoral immunity in immune response against malaria, which should be paid more attention in developing therapeutic or vaccine strategies against malaria involving stimulation of B cells.
    Print ISSN: 0019-9567
    Electronic ISSN: 1098-5522
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2018-06-23
    Description: Objective To identify the characteristics of high-cost (HC) patients and the determinants of the annual medical expenditures of Chinese rural residents. Methods Medical expenditure clustering was performed by Lorentz curve and Gini index. T and X 2 tests were performed to identify the characteristics of the respondents, and a multilevel regression model examined the determinants of their annual medical expenditures. Design A cluster sampling study was performed to identify those residents who availed healthcare services and to assign them to HC (top 5%), moderate-cost (top 30%) and low-cost (others) groups based on their annual medical expenditures. Setting The annual healthcare utilisation was calculated by using data from the population-based database of the 2014 New Rural Cooperative Medical System. Participants A total of 478 051 residents who availed healthcare services were recruited for the retrospective study in 2014. The annual medical expenditures of these residents were used as the research object. Results The total medical expenditures of Macheng city residents for the year 2014 have a Gini index of 0.81 and around 68.01% of these expenditures can be attributed to HC patients. Female residents (51.5%) and persons aged over 60 years (34.48%) who are suffering from diseases that are difficult to diagnose have a high tendency to accumulate high medical costs. The annual medical expenditures of people living in the same village or town tend to be approximated. Age, disease category, inpatient status, healthcare utilisation and utilisation level are identified as the determinants of annual medical expenditures. Conclusions The medical expenditures of rural residents are clustered at a remarkably high level, and HC patients are suffering from high economic burden. Therefore, policy-makers must guide these patients in seeking appropriate healthcare services and improve their management of healthcare quality to reduce the unnecessary healthcare utilisation of these patients. Trial registration number ChiCTR-OOR-14005563.
    Keywords: Open access, Health services research, Health economics
    Electronic ISSN: 2044-6055
    Topics: Medicine
    Published by BMJ Publishing
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2018-12-15
    Description: The edges of layered materials have unique properties that substantially differ from the body regions. In this work, we perform a systematic Raman study of the edges of various layered materials (MoS 2 , WS 2 , WSe 2 , PtS 2 , and black phosphorus). The Raman spectra of the edges feature newly observed forbidden Raman modes, which are originally undetectable from the body region. By selecting the edge type and the polarization directions of the incident and scattered light, all forbidden Raman modes are distinctly detected. Optical simulations show that the edges of layered materials drastically distort the electromagnetic fields of both the incident and scattered light, so that the light interacts with the edges in a distinct way, which differs from its interactions with the body regions.
    Electronic ISSN: 2375-2548
    Topics: Natural Sciences in General
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  • 6
    Publication Date: 2018-08-16
    Description: Purpose: Daratumumab and its use in combination with other agents is becoming a new standard of care for the treatment of multiple myeloma. We mechanistically studied how daratumumab acts on natural killer (NK) cells. Experimental Design: Quantities of NK cells in peripheral blood and/or bone marrow of patients with multiple myeloma or healthy donors were examined by flow cytometry. NK-cell apoptosis and the associated mechanism were assessed by flow cytometry and immunoblotting. Patients' NK cells were expanded in vitro using feeder cells. Combination treatment of daratumumab and expanded NK cells was performed using an MM.1S xenograft animal model. Results: CD38 –/low NK cells survived, whereas CD38 + NK cells were almost completely eliminated, in peripheral blood and bone marrow of daratumumab-treated multiple myeloma patients. NK-cell depletion occurred due to daratumumab-induced NK-cell fratricide via antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity. Consequently, CD38 –/low NK cells were more effective for eradicating multiple myeloma cells than were CD38 + NK cells in the presence of daratumumab. Blockade of CD38 with the F(ab) 2 fragments of daratumumab inhibited the antibody-mediated NK-cell fratricide. CD38 –/low NK cells displayed a significantly better potential for expansion than CD38 + NK cells, and the expanded NK cells derived from the former population were more cytotoxic than those derived from the latter against multiple myeloma cells. Therefore, infusion of ex vivo –expanded autologous NK cells from daratumumab-treated patients may improve the antibody therapy. Conclusions: We unravel a fratricide mechanism for daratumumab-mediated NK-cell depletion and provide a potential therapeutic strategy to overcome this side effect in daratumumab-treated patients with multiple myeloma. Clin Cancer Res; 24(16); 4006–17. ©2018 AACR .
    Print ISSN: 1078-0432
    Electronic ISSN: 1557-3265
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 7
    Publication Date: 2018-06-29
    Description: The highest power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) reported for perovskite solar cells (PSCs) with inverted planar structures are still inferior to those of PSCs with regular structures, mainly because of lower open-circuit voltages ( V oc ). Here we report a strategy to reduce nonradiative recombination for the inverted devices, based on a simple solution-processed secondary growth technique. This approach produces a wider bandgap top layer and a more n-type perovskite film, which mitigates nonradiative recombination, leading to an increase in V oc by up to 100 millivolts. We achieved a high V oc of 1.21 volts without sacrificing photocurrent, corresponding to a voltage deficit of 0.41 volts at a bandgap of 1.62 electron volts. This improvement led to a stabilized power output approaching 21% at the maximum power point.
    Keywords: Materials Science, Physics
    Print ISSN: 0036-8075
    Electronic ISSN: 1095-9203
    Topics: Biology , Chemistry and Pharmacology , Geosciences , Computer Science , Medicine , Natural Sciences in General , Physics
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  • 8
    Publication Date: 2018-07-18
    Description: Shun Bai, Kaiqiang Fu, Huiqi Yin, Yiqiang Cui, Qiuling Yue, Wenbo Li, Le Cheng, Huanhuan Tan, Xiaofei Liu, Yueshuai Guo, Yingwen Zhang, Jie Xie, Wenxiu He, Yuanyuan Wang, Hua Feng, Changpeng Xin, Jinwen Zhang, Mingyan Lin, Bin Shen, Zheng Sun, Xuejiang Guo, Ke Zheng, and Lan Ye Transcription factors of the Sox protein family contain a DNA-binding HMG box and are key regulators of progenitor cell fate. Here, we report that expression of Sox30 is restricted to meiotic spermatocytes and postmeiotic haploids. Sox30 mutant males are sterile owing to spermiogenic arrest at the early round spermatid stage. Specifically, in the absence of Sox30, proacrosomic vesicles fail to form a single acrosomal organelle, and spermatids arrest at step 2-3. Although most Sox30 mutant spermatocytes progress through meiosis, accumulation of diplotene spermatocytes indicates a delayed or impaired transition from meiotic to postmeiotic stages. Transcriptome analysis of isolated stage-specific spermatogenic cells reveals that Sox30 controls a core postmeiotic gene expression program that initiates as early as the late meiotic cell stage. ChIP-seq analysis shows that Sox30 binds to specific DNA sequences in mouse testes, and its genomic occupancy correlates positively with expression of many postmeiotic genes including Tnp1 , Hils1 , Ccdc54 and Tsks . These results define Sox30 as a crucial transcription factor that controls the transition from a late meiotic to a postmeiotic gene expression program and subsequent round spermatid development.
    Keywords: Reproductive biology
    Print ISSN: 0950-1991
    Electronic ISSN: 1477-9129
    Topics: Biology
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  • 9
    Publication Date: 2018-08-09
    Description: Upward mining of the residual coal seam over an abandoned pillar working is one of the effective measures to alleviate the contradiction between limited resources and increased consumption. Interburden stability over an abandoned pillar working plays a significant role in guaranteeing the safety of upward mining; however, it has not yet been extensively studied and understood. In this study, the vertical stress of the interburden over an abandoned pillar working was first investigated. The mechanical model of the interburden was established and the damage conditions were analysed. Then, the stability of the interburden over 38502 abandoned workings in Baijiazhuang coal mine was determined by mechanical analysis and field monitoring. The results show that: (i) Vertical stress of the interburden over abandoned mining zones is clearly lower than the initial stress, indicating the existence of a de-stressed effect. Moreover, vertical stress of the interburden over residual coal pillars is greater than the initial stress, which is the evidence of a stress concentration effect. (ii) The interburden over an abandoned pillar working should be regarded as an elastic rectangular plate supported by generalized Kelvin bodies in mechanical modelling. (iii) The interburden over abandoned mining zones may experience two damage stages. In the first stage, initial plastic damage appears at the central region of interburden. In the second stage, the plastic damage evolves from the central point to the surrounding areas. (iv) The mechanical analysis and field monitoring both indicate the initial damage occurred at the central region over 38502 abandoned workings in Baijiazhuang coal mine before upward mining. Related rock control measures should be implemented in that region to guarantee the safe mining of the residual coal seam.
    Keywords: energy
    Electronic ISSN: 2054-5703
    Topics: Natural Sciences in General
    Published by Royal Society
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  • 10
    Publication Date: 2018-11-02
    Description: Nonclustered protocadherins (PCDH) family is a group of cell–cell adhesion molecules. We have found differentially methylated genes in the nonclustered PCDHs family associated with Helicobacter pylori ( H. pylori ) infection in prior genome-wide methylation analysis. To further investigate the methylation and expression of nonclustered PCDHs encoding genes in H. pylori- -related gastric carcinogenesis process, four candidate genes including PCDH7, PCDH10, PCDH17, and PCDH20 were selected, which were reported to be tumor suppressors for digestive cancers. A total of 747 participants with a spectrum of gastric lesions were enrolled from a high-risk population of gastric cancer. Promoter methylation levels of four genes were significantly higher in H. pylori– positive subjects than the negative group (all P 〈 0.001). Elevated methylation levels of PCDH10 and PCDH17 were observed with the increasing severity of gastric lesions (both P trend 〈 0.001). In the protein expression analysis, PCDH17 expression was inversely associated with gastric lesions; the OR [95% confidence interval (CI)] was 0.49 (0.26–0.95) for chronic atrophic gastritis (CAG), 0.31 (0.15–0.63) for intestinal metaplasia, and 0.38 (0.19–0.75) for indefinite dysplasia and dysplasia, compared with superficial gastritis. In addition, PCDH10 expression was significantly lower in CAG (OR, 0.40; 95% CI, 0.24–0.68). The inverse association between methylation and protein expression of PCDH10 and PCDH1 7 was further supported when we explored the methylation and mRNA expression in The Cancer Genome Atlas database (all P 〈 0.001). Our study found elevated promoter methylation and decreased expression of PCDH10 and PCDH17 in advanced gastric lesions, suggesting that elevated PCDH10 and PCDH17 methylation may be an early event in gastric carcinogenesis. Cancer Prev Res; 11(11); 717–26. ©2018 AACR .
    Print ISSN: 1940-6207
    Electronic ISSN: 1940-6215
    Topics: Medicine
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