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  • Author: Jianping Li x
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Abstract

This paper presents a novel phase-shift arctangent (PSA) interpolation method to improve the measurement accuracy of a planar capacitive incremental displacement sensor. Signals of planar capacitive micro-sensors acquire waveform errors, including sensitivity differences and phase-shift errors, because of static errors and dynamic disturbances. In the proposed PSA scheme, such errors are removed completely by loading a particular arctangent function. Moreover, measuring efficiency of the proposed planar capacitive sensors is improved by combining coarse measurement and fine estimation. Experiments show unanimous results to model-based fitting. When electrode length is four times the gap distance, applying the PSA interpolation method decreases waveform errors from more than 4 % to 1.72 %.

Abstract

COVID-19 is the current public health threat all over the world. Unfortunately, there is no specific prevention and treatment strategy for this disease. We aim to explore the potential role of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) in this regard through this literature review. As a crucial enzyme of renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS), ACE2 not only mediates the virus entry but also affects the pathophysiological process of virus-induced acute lung injury (ALI), as well as other organs’ damage. As interaction of COVID-19 virus spike and ACE2 is essential for virus infection, COVID-19-specific vaccine based on spike protein, small molecule compound interrupting their interaction, human monoclonal antibody based on receptor-binding domain, and recombinant human ACE2 protein (rhuACE2) have aroused the interests of researchers. Meanwhile, ACE2 could catalyze angiotensin II (Ang II) to form angiotensin 1-7 (Ang 1-7), thus alleviates the harmful effect of Ang II and amplifies the protection effect of Ang1-7. ACE inhibitor and angiotensin II receptor blocker (ARB) have been shown to increase the level of expression of ACE2 and could be potential strategies in protecting lungs, heart, and kidneys. ACE2 plays a very important role in the pathogenesis and pathophysiology of COVID-19 infection. Strategies targeting ACE2 and its ligand, COVID-19 virus spike protein, may provide novel method in the prevention and management of novel coronavirus pneumonia.

Abstract

Objectives: To investigate the independent and joint associations of hyperhomocysteinemia and hypertension with incident stroke and stroke death in Chinese adults.

Methods: About 39,165 rural Chinese adults aged 35 years or older who had no history of stroke at the baseline study were prospectively followed to determine major cardiovascular events, with an average follow-up of 6.2 years. Using a nested case–control design, this report includes 179 incident stroke cases (121 stroke deaths) and 179 controls without vascular events from the original cohort matched by age, sex, community, and length of plasma storage. Baseline plasma total homocysteine (tHcy) measurements were obtained for all subjects. Logistic regression analysis was performed to investigate the independent and joint associations between H-type hypertension, defined as subjects with concomitant hypertension and elevated homocysteine (≥10 μmol/L), and risk of incident stroke and stroke death, after adjusting for important covariates.

Results: We analyzed each risk factor independently and jointly. For analysis, homocysteine was divided into three groups: low (tHcy <10 µmol/L), moderate (≥10 µmol/L tHcy <20 µmol/L), and high (tHcy≥20µmol/L). Compared to subjects in the low group, the odds ratios (95% CI) of incident stroke for those in the moderate group and the high group were 1.7 (0.8–3.7) and 3.1 (1.2–8.6), respectively. The odds ratios (95% CI) of stroke death for the moderate and high groups were 2.8 (1.1–7.4) and 5.1 (1.6–16.4), respectively. Hypertension was also independently associated with a higher risk of incident stroke and stroke death: 3.8 (2.3–6.4) and 3.2 (1.8–6.0), respectively, compared to those without hypertension. When analyzed jointly, the highest risk was found among patients with H-type hypertensive with both hyperhomocysteinemia and hypertension: 12.7 (2.8–58.0) for incident stroke and 11.7 (2.5–54.7) for stroke death.

Conclusions: This study provides strong evidence that hyperhomocysteinemia and hypertension are two independent, modifiable risk factors, which act additively to increase the risk of incident stroke and stroke death. The results strongly suggest that H-type hypertension is a major risk factor for vascular disease and mortality, and those with H-type hypertension may particularly benefit from homocysteine-lowering therapy along with anti-hypertension therapy in Chinese populations.

Abstract

The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of reduced levels of Cu, Zn, Mn in combination from organic mineral source on eggshell quality and mineral retention in hens. After feeding the basal diet (8.82 mg/kg Cu, 24.94 mg/kg Zn, and 16.38 mg/kg Mn) without Cu, Zn, and Mn addition for 4 weeks, hens (39-week-old) were assigned to 5 treatments according to the equal body weight and egg production for 12-week experimental trial. The 5 treatments included the basal diet without Cu, Zn, and Mn (NCON), and NCON added with 16-80-60 mg/kg Cu-Zn-Mn from sulfates (ITM100%), or 4-20-15, 8-40-30 or 16-80-60 mg/kg Cu-Zn-Mn from 2-hydroxy-4-(methylthio)butanoic acid (HMTBA) mineral chelates (OTM25%, OTM50% or OTM100%). Supplementation of Cu, Zn, and Mn had no significant influences on the performance of hens. After 12 weeks feeding, eggshell breaking strength (EBS) decreased in the following order: OTM25% and ITM100% > OTM50% > NCON and OTM100%. The eggshell weight and thickness in OTM25% were greater than that in NCON, while not differing from that in ITM100%. The EBS and eggshell weight linearly decreased with increasing level of OTM. After 12 weeks feeding, supplementation of Cu, Zn, and Mn increased the concentrations of liver Zn, tibia Zn and Mn, and Zn and Mn retention in eggs as compared with NCON. No significant difference was observed in the concentrations of Cu, Zn, and Mn in liver and plasma, and Zn and Mn in eggs between any OTM treatment and ITM100% groups. Addition of OTM at increasing level had quadratic effect on tibia Cu, Zn, Mn concentrations, with the greater retention of Cu, Zn, and Mn in OTM50%. In conclusion, the OTM25% from HMT BA mineral chelates can substitute for ITM100% evaluated by the eggshell quality in the diet of laying hens.

Abstract

Objective To investigate the effects of individualised treatment with peginterferon alpha-2a (40 kD) plus ribavirin in Chinese patients with CHC.

Methods Total of 297 consecutive Chinese patients were enrolled, including 250 naïve cases and 47 cases who were previously treated. Treatment duration was determined according to viral genotypes, prior treatment history and viral responses at week 4, 12 and 24.

Results Totally, 235 patients (79.1%) completed treatment and 186 (87.3%) achieved SVR. And 219 out of 289 (75.8%) patients achieved HCV RNA negative at week 4 (RVR) and 259 of 276 (93.8%) at week 12. Among the 164 patients with RVR who completed follow-up, 158 (96.3%) achieved SVR. Patients with RVR had lower baseline viral loads than patients without RVR (P = 0.034). The positive predictive value (PPV) of RVR for SVR was 90.7% (OR 2.10 vs. non-RVR, 95% CI: 0.50 - 8.7). Similar outcomes were observed among patients with HCV undetectable at week 12.

Conclusions Complete viral suppression by week 4 is associated with a high rate of treatment success in treatment naïve and experienced patients receiving individualized CHC therapy.

Abstract

Gleditsiae Fructus Abnormalis and Gleditsiae Sinensis Fructus are obtained from different developmental stages of fruits from Gleditsia sinensis Lam. (Leguminosae). The possible interchangeable usage of the two fruits, however, has long been very controversial. Here, high performance liquid chromatography coupled with diode array detection was developed to explore their chemical fingerprinting profiles. Besides, the amounts of aglycones of saponin compounds, echinocystic acid and oleanolic acid in both fruits were quantified. The results indicated that there was no significant difference in the content of aglycones from the two types of fruits. However, their chromatographic fingerprints showed distinct characteristics. Therefore, the interchangeable application of these fruits has to be taken with a specific precaution.

Abstract

The fluvio-lacustrine sequences in the Nihewan Basin, northern China, provide important terrestrial archives about Palaeolithic settlements and, therefore, about early human occupation in high northern latitude in East Asia. Here we present detailed ESR dating of the Donggutuo Palaeolithic site, located in this basin. Four levels A, B, C and E of the Donggutuo archaeological layer yield ESR ages ranging from 1060±129 ka to 1171±132 ka with a mean of 1119±132 ka. The ages are consistent with the paleomagnetic data, which show that the Donggutuo Palaeolithic site lies just below the onset of the Jaramillo normal subchron (0.99–1.07 Ma). Furthermore, our results indicate that the reliable ESR dating range of bleached quartz using Ti-Li centre can be effectively extended to 1100 ka and the Ti-Li centre was zeroed before the last deposition, which requires improvement of the understanding of the bleaching mechanism conditions.