Publications by authors named "Chang Zhao"

161 Publications

Conformational remodeling enhances activity of lanthipeptide zinc-metallopeptidases.

Nat Chem Biol 2022 May 5. Epub 2022 May 5.

State Key Laboratory of Coordination Chemistry, Chemistry and Biomedicine Innovation Center of Nanjing University, Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Advanced Organic Materials, School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Nanjing University, Nanjing, China.

Lanthipeptides are an important group of natural products with diverse biological functions, and their biosynthesis requires the removal of N-terminal leader peptides (LPs) by designated proteases. LanP enzymes, a subgroup of M1 zinc-metallopeptidases, have been recently identified as bifunctional proteases with both endo- and aminopeptidase activities to remove LPs of class III and class IV lanthipeptides. Herein, we report the biochemical and structural characterization of EryP as the LanP enzyme from the biosynthesis of class III lanthipeptide erythreapeptin. We determined X-ray crystal structures of EryP in three conformational states, the open, intermediate and closed states, and identified a unique interdomain Ca binding site as a regulatory element that modulates its domain dynamics and proteolytic activity. Inspired by this regulatory Ca binding, we developed a strategy to engineer LanP enzymes for enhanced catalytic activities by strengthening interdomain associations and driving the conformational equilibrium toward their closed forms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41589-022-01018-2DOI Listing
May 2022

Making Sense of Sensor Data: How Local Environmental Conditions Add Value to Social Science Research.

Soc Sci Comput Rev 2022 Feb 5;40(1):179-194. Epub 2020 May 5.

University of Chicago.

Recent advances in computing technologies have enabled the development of low-cost, compact weather and air quality monitors. The U.S. federally funded Array of Things (AoT) project has deployed more than 140 such sensor nodes throughout the City of Chicago. This paper combines a year's worth of AoT sensor data with household data collected from 450 elderly Chicagoans in order to explore the feasibility of using previously unavailable data on local environmental conditions to improve traditional neighborhood research. Specifically, we pilot the use of AoT sensor data to overcome limitations in research linking air pollution to poor physical and mental health and find support for recent findings that exposure to pollutants contributes to both respiratory and dementia-related diseases. We expect that this support will become even stronger as sensing technologies continue to improve and more AoT nodes come online, enabling additional applications to social science research where environmental context matters.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0894439320920601DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8991303PMC
February 2022

Noxa and Puma genes regulated by hTERT promoter can mitigate growth and induce apoptosis in hepatocellular carcinoma mouse model.

J Cancer 2022 28;13(6):2001-2013. Epub 2022 Mar 28.

Department of Regenerative Medicine, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Jilin University, Changchun 130021, China.

With significant high incidence and death rates, liver cancer has become one of the most common cancers all over the world. Hence, novel strategies are needed for the management of this malignancy. Apoptotic related proteins and are the members of BH3-only family. In this study, human or coding sequences have been inserted into plasmid pcDNA 3.1 regulated by human TERT promoter. The transfection of HepG2 cells with pcTERT-Noxa or pcTET-Puma resulted in the significant suppression of cell proliferation as well as finally led to apoptosis via mitochondrial and death receptor pathways, and also exhibited significantly reduced the ability of invasion and metastasis. Moreover, an study revealed that intratumoral injections of pcTERT-Noxa or pcTERT-Puma plasmids effectively suppressed the tumor growth and can exhibit anti-neoplastic effects by recruiting , , positive T lymphocytes in the tumor tissues. Overall, our findings illustrated that pcTERT-Noxa and pcTERT-Puma may exhibit significant anti-tumor effects both and .
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7150/jca.70282DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8990414PMC
March 2022

Research on Image Feature Extraction Algorithm of the Egg and Egg White Protein Thermal Gelation Based on PCA/ICA.

Comput Intell Neurosci 2022 26;2022:1266332. Epub 2022 Mar 26.

School of Food Engineering, Heilongjiang Vocational College for Nationalities, Harbin 150066, China.

With the rapid development of the computer field in recent years, a series of major breakthroughs have been made in the field of computer vision. The key technologies in image feature recognition, face recognition, image understanding, pattern recognition, and machine learning have been rapidly applied and developed. The research and application of this field provide efficient and convenient means. However, for traditional physical and chemical experimental research, parameter adjustment is time-consuming and costly. In response to the phenomenon, this article starts with the study of the characteristics of the egg white protein thermal gelation image and explores the extraction of external features presented by the optimal parameters of the coagulation image under the thermal coagulation state of the egg white protein, based on the classic PCA and ICA-image feature extraction algorithm and its improved algorithm, respectively. Experiment and simulation research on several image feature extraction algorithms under different egg white solidification states are carried out, and the efficient recognition method and accuracy of the image under the optimal egg white protein thermal gelation state are discussed. It has important reference significance for the research of optimal image feature extraction in the future high-efficiency experimental research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2022/1266332DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8976618PMC
April 2022

Efficacy of EGFR-TKI sequential therapy in patients with exon 19 insertion-positive non-small-cell lung cancer: A case report.

World J Clin Cases 2022 Feb;10(6):1883-1888

Endoscopy Center, Shanxi Tumor Hospital, Taiyuan 030000, Shanxi Province, China.

Background: Insertions in exon 19 in the epidermal growth factor receptor gene (EGFR) is a rarely seen mutation in non-small cell lung cancer. These patients have been effectively treated with sequential EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs).

Case Summary: Here, we presented a case of non-small cell lung cancer, stage IIIB, with exon 19 insertion mutation as detected in the right lower lobe by next-generation sequencing. The patient was sequentially treated with first, second, and third-generation EGFR TKIs after the surgical operation. The overall survival of the patient was 21.3 mo. There was no dynamic analysis of drug resistance mechanisms in targeted therapy.

Conclusion: This case emphasized the importance of following the guidelines. In patients with mutations, repeated and dynamic next-generation sequencing monitoring is necessary to prescribe a personalized treatment plan.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12998/wjcc.v10.i6.1883DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8891781PMC
February 2022

Soil dissolved organic matters mediate bacterial taxa to enhance nitrification rates under wheat cultivation.

Sci Total Environ 2022 Jul 8;828:154418. Epub 2022 Mar 8.

School of Geography, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing 210023, PR China; Key Laboratory of Virtual Geographic Environment (Nanjing Normal University), Ministry of Education, Nanjing 210023, PR China; Jiangsu Center for Collaborative Innovation in Geographical Information Resource, Development and Application, Nanjing 210023, PR China.

Studies have shown that dissolved organic matters (DOMs) may affect soil nutrient availability to plants due to their effect on microbial communities; however, the relationships of soil DOM-bacterial community-N function in response to root exudates remains poorly understand. Here, we evaluated the DOM composition, bacterial taxonomic variation and nitrogen transformation rates in both acidic and alkaline soils, with or without the typical nitrate preference plant (wheat, Triticum aestivum L.). After 30 days' cultivation, DOM compositions such as sugars, amines, amino acids, organic acid, and ketone were significantly increased in soil with wheat vs. bare soil, and these compounds were mainly involved in nitrogen metabolism pathways. Soil core bacterial abundance was changed while bacterial community diversity decreased in response to wheat planting. Function prediction analysis based on FAPROTAX software showed that the bacterial community were significantly (p < 0.05) affiliated with nitrification and organic compound degradation. Additionally, db-RDA and VPA analysis suggested that the contribution of soil DOM to the variance of bacterial community was stronger than that of soil available nutrients. Furthermore, the N-transformation related bacteria like Burkholderiales and ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) were positively correlated with soil gross nitrification rate, confirming that the soil N transformation was enhanced in both acidic and alkaline soils. Our results provide insight into how soil DOM affects the community structure and function of bacteria to regulate the process of nitrogen transformation in plant-soil system.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.154418DOI Listing
July 2022

Decreased Netrin-1 in Mild Cognitive Impairment and Alzheimer's Disease Patients.

Front Aging Neurosci 2021 16;13:762649. Epub 2022 Feb 16.

Department of Neurology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University, Harbin, China.

Background And Objective: Inflammatory mediators are closely associated with the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Netrin-1 is an axon guidance protein and despite its capacity to function as a neuroimmune guidance signal, its role in AD or MCI is poorly understood. In addition, the association among netrin-1, cognitive impairment and serum inflammatory cytokines such as interleukin-17 (IL-17) and tumor necrosis (TNF-α) remains unclear. The aim of this study was to determine serum levels of IL-17, TNF-α and netrin-1in a cohort of AD and MCI patients, and to study the relationship between these cytokines and cognitive status, as well as to assess the possible relationships between netrin-1 levels and inflammatory molecules.

Methods: Serum concentrations of netrin-1, TNF-α and IL-17 were determined in 20 AD patients, 22 MCI patients and 22 healthy controls using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). In addition, neuropsychological evaluations and psychometric assessments were performed in all subjects.

Results: Serum netrin-1 levels were decreased in AD and MCI patients and were positively correlated with Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) scores. In contrast, serum TNF-α and IL-17 levels were elevated in AD and MCI cohorts and negatively correlated with MMSE scores. Serum netrin-1 levels were inversely related with TNF-α and IL-17 levels in AD, but not MCI, patients.

Conclusion: Based on the findings reported here, netrin-1 may serve as a marker for the early recognition of dementia and predict cognitive impairment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fnagi.2021.762649DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8888826PMC
February 2022

[Clinical research of unilateral posterior glottic cleft dilatation in the treatment of bilateral vocal cord paralysis dyspnea].

Lin Chung Er Bi Yan Hou Tou Jing Wai Ke Za Zhi 2022 Feb;36(2):105-109

1Department of Otorhinolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery,the First Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University,Zhengzhou,450052,China.

The aim of this study is to evaluate the efficacy of unilateral posterior glottic cleft dilatation with low-temperature plasma under the endoscope in the treatment of bilateral vocal cord paralysis dyspnea. Forty-one patients with bilateral vocal cord paralysis were recruited, and they were all admitted to the Department of Otorhinolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery, the First Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University from March 2014 to June 2019. Those 41 patients were all treated with low-temperature plasma to completely resect unilateral arytenoid cartilage and the posterior 1/3 of the ipsilateral vocal cord. Fiber laryngoscopy was performed before and after operation. The clinical efficacy of the operation was evaluated by the size of glottis cleta, the improvement rate of dyspnea, voice satisfaction, swallowing function, the tracheal cannula removal rate and postoperative complication rate. Forty-one patients were followed up for 24-88 months. The rate of one-pass extubation was 88.57%(31/35). The satisfaction rate of voice was 92.11%(35/38). The recovery rate of swallowing function was 97.56%(40/41). This study demonstrated that the application of low-temperature plasma in unilateral posterior glottic cleft dilatation could significantly improved the ventilation function of patients with bilateral vocal cord paralysis, with a reliable curative effect and a high extubation rate. It is a safe, reliable, simple and minimally invasive treatment option for the treatment of bilateral vocal cord paralysis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.13201/j.issn.2096-7993.2022.02.006DOI Listing
February 2022

Metabolite Comparison between Serum and Follicular Fluid of Dairy Cows with Inactive Ovaries Postpartum.

Animals (Basel) 2022 Jan 24;12(3). Epub 2022 Jan 24.

College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, Heilongjiang Bayi Agricultural University, Daqing 163319, China.

Inactive ovaries (IO) accounts for 50% of ovarian disease in postpartum dairy cows, which seriously affects their reproductive efficiency. To investigate the metabolic changes in the serum and follicular fluid of dairy cows with IO during lactation, six estrus (E) cows and six IO cows at 50 to 55 days in milk were selected based on B ultrasonic detection and clinical manifestations. The differential metabolites in serum and follicular fluid between the E cows and IO cows were identified by ultra-high-pressure liquid chromatography-quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry, combined with multidimensional statistical methods. The results showed that dairy cows with IO were in a subclinical ketosis status where beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) exceeded 1.20 mmol/L, 14 differential metabolites in the serum of IO cows included 10 increased metabolites and 4 decreased metabolites, and 14 differential metabolites in the follicular fluid of IO cows included 8 increased metabolites and 6 decreased metabolites. These differential metabolites mainly involved nine metabolic pathways. The common enrichment pathway of different metabolites in serum and follicular fluid were glycerophospholipid metabolism and pentose and glucuronate interconversions. In conclusion, there were significant differences in the differential metabolites and enrichment pathways between serum and follicular fluid of IO cows, implying that there were complex changes in blood metabolism and local follicular metabolism of IO cows, whose interactions need further investigation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ani12030285DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8833624PMC
January 2022

A Molecular Dynamics Analysis on Interfacial Thermal Resistance between Particle and Medium in Light-Induced Heat Transfer of Plasmonic Nanofluid.

Langmuir 2022 Feb 8;38(7):2327-2334. Epub 2022 Feb 8.

College of Mechanical Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai 201804, P.R. China.

Light-induced heat transfer process of plasmonic nanofluids is critical for many applications, but the energy conversion pathway still remains controversial. In this work, we develop a calculation model based on the combination of the electromagnetic theory and molecular dynamics (MD) simulation to investigate the impact of the localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) on the heat transfer between nanoparticles and the surrounding medium in gold and silver nanofluids. It is found that the LSPR-induced enhanced electric field (EEF) can obviously reduce the interfacial thermal resistance to promote the heat transfer process, especially in silver nanofluids. The results reveal that the movement of water molecules can be violently perturbed by the EEF to overcome the binding force of nanoparticles, and therefore the energy transfer process in water molecules can be obviously enhanced. The effect of EEF is significant, especially in the initial heating stages when the temperature of the nanoparticles is relatively low. When the silver nanoparticle temperature is 400 K, the relative reduction ratio of the interfacial thermal resistance can reach 19.0% under the effect of the LSPR-induced EEF. The results also indicate that two different energy conversion mechanisms: photothermal and photoexcited electric-field enhancement are likely to coexist and jointly impact the heat transfer process in plasmonic nanofluids, and the effect of the latter cannot be neglected. This work provides some new insights for a deeper understanding of the light-induced heat transfer process in plasmonic nanofluids.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.langmuir.1c03209DOI Listing
February 2022

Discrimination in Latinx families' linked lives: Examining the roles of family process and youth worries.

J Fam Psychol 2022 Jan 31. Epub 2022 Jan 31.

School of Social and Family Dynamics.

Our goal was to test a prospective indirect effects model to examine whether maternal and youth exposures to discrimination were linked to adolescent adjustment (i.e., grade point average [GPA], internalizing symptoms and externalizing symptoms) via maternal warmth and family anti-immigrant behavior modifications and whether youth anti-immigrant worries qualified these relations. Prior research has demonstrated that individual exposures to ethnic-racial discrimination are associated with poor adjustment among Latinx adolescents. Less research has evaluated the impact of discrimination from a family lens or focused on identifying the mechanism via which discrimination impacts adolescent adjustment. Data from a school-based sample of 547 Latinx adolescents (55% female; 88.1% U.S. born) across 2 years were used. Study hypotheses were tested using structural equation modeling (SEM) in Mplus. Whereas adolescents' discrimination exposures were associated with poorer adjustment via disruptions to maternal warmth, mothers' discrimination exposures were associated with lowered adolescent internalizing symptoms via family anti-immigrant behavior modifications. Further, prospective negative relations between warmth and internalizing and GPA were attenuated in the context of adolescents' greater anti-immigrant worries. By exploring discrimination in the family context and examining mechanisms via which discrimination impacts adolescent adjustment, the study offers a more comprehensive picture of the pernicious toll discrimination can have on the family lives of Latinx youth. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/fam0000959DOI Listing
January 2022

Inhibiting Dendrite Growth via Regulating the Electrified Interface for Fast-Charging Lithium Metal Anode.

ACS Cent Sci 2021 Dec 11;7(12):2029-2038. Epub 2021 Nov 11.

State Key Laboratory of Chemical Engineering, Institute of Pharmaceutical Engineering, College of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Zhejiang University, No. 38 Zheda Road, Hangzhou 310027, China.

Extreme fast charging (XFC), with a recharging time of 15 min, is the key to the mainstream adoption of battery electric vehicles. Lithium metal, in the meantime, has re-emerged as the ultimate anode because of its ultrahigh specific capacity and low electrochemical potential. However, the low lithium-ion concentration near the lithium electrode surface can result in uncontrolled dendrite growth aggravated by high plating current densities. Here, we reveal the beneficial effects of an adaptively enhanced internal electric field in a constant voltage charging mode in XFC via a molecular understanding of the electrolyte-electrode interfaces. With the same charging time and capacity, the increased electric field stress in dozens of millivolts, compared with that in a constant current mode, can facilitate Li migrating toward the negatively charged lithium electrode, mitigating Li depletion at the interface and thereby suppressing dendrites. In addition, more NO ions are involved in the solvation sheath that is constructed on the lithium electrode surface, leading to the nitride-enriched solid electrolyte interphase and thus favoring lower barriers for Li transport. On the basis of these merits, the Li||LiTiO battery runs steadily for 550 cycles with charging current peaks up to 27 mA cm, and the Li||S full cells exhibit extended life-spans charged within 12 min.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acscentsci.1c01014DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8704041PMC
December 2021

Effect of Negative Energy Balance on Plasma Metabolites, Minerals, Hormones, Cytokines and Ovarian Follicular Growth Rate in Holstein Dairy Cows.

J Vet Res 2021 Sep 5;65(3):361-368. Epub 2021 Jul 5.

Heilongjiang Provincial Key Laboratory of Prevention and Control of Bovine Diseases, College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, Heilongjiang Bayi Agricultural University, Sartu District, Daqing 163319, PR China.

Introduction: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of negative energy balance (NEB) on the final growth of the dominant ovarian follicle in Holstein cows.

Material And Methods: Cows at 14 to 21 d postpartum from an intensive dairy farm were randomly selected and allocated into a positive energy balance group (PEB, with β-hydroxybutyric acid (BHBA) level < 1.2 mmol/L, n = 15) and an NEB group (BHBA > 1.2 mmol/L, n = 15). Plasma samples were collected at 21, 50 and 55 d postpartum to assess the concentrations of energy metabolites, minerals, hormones and cytokines. Ovaries were examined by transrectal ultrasound on days 50 and 55 (120 hours later) to evaluate the diameter of the largest follicle.

Results: Compared with PEB cows, there were a more severe body condition loss and a lower milk yield in NEB cows (P < 0.05) and these had greater concentrations of plasma BHBA, non-esterified fatty acids, triglycerides, urea nitrogen, growth hormone, interleukin 6, and fibroblast growth factor 21 and lesser concentrations of plasma glucose, total cholesterol, insulin, insulin-like growth factor 1, insulin-like growth factor binding protein 3, leptin, brain-derived neurotrophic factor and angiopoietin-like protein 8 on d 21 (P < 0.05), while plasma minerals were not affected by energy status (P > 0.05). These changes persisted until the end of the study period (50-55 days postpartum) resulting in a lower follicular growth rate for cows in the NEB than the PEB group.

Conclusion: These observations indicate that follicular growth rate is associated with measurable changes in energy metabolite, hormone and cytokine concentrations caused by early postpartum NEB.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2478/jvetres-2021-0035DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8643087PMC
September 2021

Seasonal to decadal spatiotemporal variations of the global ocean carbon sink.

Glob Chang Biol 2022 03 20;28(5):1786-1797. Epub 2021 Dec 20.

First Institute of Oceanography and Key Laboratory of Marine Sciences and Numerical Modeling, Ministry of Natural Resources, Qingdao, China.

The global ocean has absorbed approximately 30% of anthropogenic CO  since the beginning of the industrial revolution. However, the spatiotemporal evolution of this important global carbon sink varies substantially on all timescales and has not yet been well evaluated. Here, based on a reconstructed observation-based product of surface ocean pCO and air-sea CO  flux (the MPI-SOMFFN method), we investigated seasonal to decadal spatiotemporal variations of the ocean CO  sink during the past three decades using an adaptive data analysis method. Two predominant variations are modulated annual cycles and decadal fluctuations, which account for approximately 46% and 25% of all extracted components, respectively. Although the whole summer to non-summer seasonal difference pattern is determined by the Southern Ocean, the non-summer CO  sink at mid-latitudes in both hemispheres shows an increasing trend (a total increase of approximately 1.0 PgC during the period 1982-2019), while it is relatively stable in summer. On decadal timescales for the global ocean carbon sink, unlike the weakening decade (1990-1999) and the reinvigoration decade (2000-2009) in which the Southern Ocean plays the dominant role, the reinforcement decade (2010-2019) is mainly the result from the weakening source effect in the equatorial Pacific Ocean. Our results suggest that except for the Southern Ocean's role in the global ocean carbon sink, the strengthening non-summer's sink at mid-latitudes in both hemispheres and the decadal or longer timescales of equatorial Pacific Ocean dynamics should be fully considered in understanding the oceanic carbon cycle on a global scale.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/gcb.16031DOI Listing
March 2022

Liver involvement in patients with erythropoietic protoporphyria: retrospective analysis of clinicopathological features of 5 cases.

Ann Diagn Pathol 2022 Feb 17;56:151859. Epub 2021 Nov 17.

Department of Pathology, The Third Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510000, China. Electronic address:

Erythropoietic protoporphyria (EPP) is a rare inherited disease whose morbidity is about 1:75,000 to 1:200,000. It is caused by the deficiency of porphyrin ferrochelatase (FECH). Liver involvement in EPP is even rarer. The diagnosis of EPP with liver involvement mainly relies on clinical manifestations, laboratory examinations, histopathological examinations and genetic testing, which is still a huge challenge for both clinicians and pathologists. Here, 5 cases of EPP with liver injury were collected, and the clinicopathological features of these patients were analyzed. The clinical manifestations and laboratory examinations varied from person to person, whereas the liver biopsies showed that there were dark brown deposits within the hepatocytes, Kupffer cells, bile canaliculi and the lumen of bile ducts, which was a constant finding by histopathological examination. Gene tests were conducted in two of the five cases, and the results confirmed the diagnosis. Fully understanding of the diseases can help us reduce the rate of missed diagnosis and provide proper treatment as early as possible.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.anndiagpath.2021.151859DOI Listing
February 2022

Adolescent Development in Context: A Decade Review of Neighborhood and Activity Space Research.

J Res Adolesc 2021 12;31(4):944-965

Pennsylvania State University.

Over the last decade, two lines of inquiry have emerged from earlier investigations of adolescent neighborhood effects. First, researchers began incorporating space-time geography to study adolescent development within activity spaces or routine activity locations and settings. Second, cultural-developmental researchers implicated neighborhood settings in cultural development, to capture neighborhood effects on competencies and processes that are salient or normative for minoritized youth. We review the decade's studies on adolescent externalizing, internalizing, academic achievement, health, and cultural development within neighborhoods and activity spaces. We offer recommendations supporting decompartmentalization of cultural-developmental and activity space scholarship to advance the science of adolescent development in context.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jora.12623DOI Listing
December 2021

Karst rocky desertification diverged the soil residing and the active ectomycorrhizal fungal communities thereby fostering distinctive extramatrical mycelia.

Sci Total Environ 2022 Feb 16;807(Pt 3):151016. Epub 2021 Oct 16.

Key Laboratory of Urban Agriculture, School of Agriculture and Biology, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China; Shanghai Yangtze River Delta Eco-Environmental Change and Management Observation and Research Station, Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Education, 800 Dongchuan Rd, Shanghai 200240, China; Shanghai Urban Forest Ecosystem Research Station, National Forestry and Grassland Administration, 800 Dongchuan Rd., Shanghai 200240, China. Electronic address:

Ectomycorrhizal fungi (EMF) are mutualists that play crucial roles in liberation, nutrient acquisition, transfer of growth-limiting resources and provision of water to host plants in terrestrial ecosystems, particularly in stressed prone climates. In this study, a field-based experiment was performed in Yunnan, China to assess the effect of karst rocky desertification (KRD) and natural forests (non-KRD) sites on the richness and composition of EMF communities. Inert sand-filled mesh bags were employed to characterize the active EMF and quantify the production of extramatrical mycelium (EMM). Results indicated that, EMF exhibited a significant differentiation among KRD and non-KRD sites, richness and diversity were higher across KRD areas, whereas the evenness showed the opposite trend. Ascomycota and Zygomycota were greater across KRD sites, however, Basidiomycota showed no difference across both study sites. The relative abundance of Clavaria, Butyriboletus, Odontia, Phyloporus, Helvella, Russula and Tomentella were higher across the KRD sites, whereas, Clavulinopsis, Endogone, Amanita, Inocybe and Clavulina were higher across the non-KRD sites. It's worth noting that, saprophytic (SAP) fungal community was found to be more abundant in the soil than the mesh bags at both sites particularly at KRD sites, which likely provide more free space and less competition for the EMF to thrive well in the mesh bags. In similar pattern, ergosterol concentration in mesh bags was observed relatively higher at KRD sites than the non-KRD sites. The Entoloma, Amanita, and Sebacina were found to be substantially higher in mesh bags than soil across both sites. Delicatula, Helvella and Tomentella on the other hand, showed higher relative abundance in mesh bags than soil over KRD sites, however they did not differ across non-KRD sites. Taken together, the presented results highlight relationship between the EMF community and the complex KRD environment, which is very important for the restoration of disturbed karst landscapes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.151016DOI Listing
February 2022

Immune-mediated disease associated microbial community responded to PAH stress in phyllosphere of roadside greenspaces in Shanghai.

Environ Pollut 2022 Jan 15;292(Pt B):118379. Epub 2021 Oct 15.

School of Agriculture and Biology, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, 800 Dongchuan Rd., 200240, Shanghai, China; Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Helsinki, FIN-15140, Lahti, Finland. Electronic address:

Microorganisms in urban greenspaces play key roles in ecosystem service provision and potentially influence human health. Increasing evidence suggests that anthropogenic disturbance poses constant stress on urban microbial communities, yet, as previous studies have focused on non-contaminated greenspaces, it has remained largely unknown how microorganisms respond to anthropogenic stress in roadside greenspaces with contamination. Our previous effort determined phyllosphere PAHs of camphor trees in 84 sites of roadside greenspaces along the urban-rural gradient in Shanghai. Here, we further investigated the phyllosphere microbial communities (PMCs) of the same sites across the same urban categories, including urban, suburban, and rural areas using high-throughput DNA sequencing. We aimed to explore how PMCs, especially those associated with immune-mediated diseases (IMDs), were affected by PAHs and the surrounding land-use types. We found that several microorganisms associated with increasing IMD risk were stimulated by PAHs. The composition of PMCs differed between the three urban categories which can be largely explained by the variation of phyllosphere PAH concentration and the surrounding land-use types. Similar to our previous study, suburban areas were linked with the most potential adverse health effects, where we observed the lowest bacterial diversity, the highest relative abundance of IMD-associated bacteria, and the highest relative abundance of Pathotroph. Urban green-blue infrastructure (GBI) was positively correlated with the diversity of PMCs, whereas urban grey infrastructure tended to homogenize PMCs. Notably, GBI also reduced the relative abundance of IMD-associated and pathogenic microbes, indicating the potential health benefits of GBI in land-use planning. Taken together, our study emphasizes the need to further investigate environmental communities in contaminated traffic environments, as human microbiomes are directly exposed to risky microorganisms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2021.118379DOI Listing
January 2022

Flexible Brain Transitions Between Hierarchical Network Segregation and Integration Associated With Cognitive Performance During a Multisource Interference Task.

IEEE J Biomed Health Inform 2022 Apr 14;26(4):1835-1846. Epub 2022 Apr 14.

Cognition involves locally segregated and globally integrated processing. This process is hierarchically organized and linked to evidence from hierarchical modules in brain networks. However, researchers have not clearly determined how flexible transitions between these hierarchical processes are associated with cognitive performance. Here, we designed a multisource interference task (MSIT) and introduced the nested-spectral partition (NSP) method to detect hierarchical modules in brain functional networks. By defining hierarchical segregation and integration across multiple levels, we showed that the MSIT requires higher network segregation in the whole brain and most functional systems but generates higher integration in the control system. Meanwhile, brain networks have more flexible transitions between segregated and integrated configurations in the task state. Crucially, higher functional flexibility in the resting state, less flexibility in the task state and more efficient switching of the brain from resting to task states were associated with better task performance. Our hierarchical modular analysis was more effective at detecting alterations in functional organization and the phenotype of cognitive performance than graph-based network measures at a single level.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/JBHI.2021.3119940DOI Listing
April 2022

Asporin regulated by miR-26b-5p mediates chondrocyte senescence and exacerbates osteoarthritis progression via TGF-β1/Smad2 pathway.

Rheumatology (Oxford) 2021 Sep 24. Epub 2021 Sep 24.

Orthopedic Hospital of Guangdong Province, Academy of Orthopedics•Guangdong Province, Department of Orthopedics, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Southern Medical University, Guangzhou, China.

Objectives: This study aimed to investigate the role and mechanism of asporin in modulating chondrocyte senescence in osteoarthritis (OA) pathology.

Methods: Asporin and senescence-related hallmark expression were examined in human and experimental OA mouse cartilage samples. Twelve-week-old male C57 mice were administered with recombinant protein (rm-asporin)- or asporin-siRNA-expressing lentiviruses via intra-articular injection once a week after destabilization of the medial meniscus (DMM) surgery to induce OA. Cartilage damage was measured using the Osteoarthritis Research Society International score. Senescence-associated β-galactosidase (SA-βGal) staining, γH2AX, p21, and p16INK4a were analyzed by immunofluorescence staining and western blot to assess the specific role of asporin in chondrocyte senescence. The TGF-β1/Smad2 signaling pathway and miR-26b-5p were further evaluated to explore the mechanism of asporin in OA.

Results: Asporin was upregulated in articular chondrocytes of OA patients and DMM mice and accompanied by accumulation of senescent cells. Asporin overexpression exaggerated OA progression, whereas silencing asporin restored chondrocyte homeostasis and deferred chondrocyte senescence, leading to markedly attenuated DMM-induced OA. Cellular and molecular analyses showed that asporin can be inhibited by miR-26b-5p, which was significantly downregulated in OA cartilage, leading to exacerbation of experimental OA partially through inhibition of TGF-β1/Smad2 signaling in chondrocytes.

Conclusions: Our findings indicate that asporin plays an essential role in chondrocyte senescence and OA pathogenesis. Upregulated by miR-26b-5p, asporin inhibits the TGF-β1/Smad2 pathway to accelerate chondrocyte senescence and exacerbate cartilage degeneration. Targeting the miR-26b-5p/asporin/Smad2 axis may serve as a practical therapeutic strategy to delay chondrocyte senescence and OA development.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/rheumatology/keab725DOI Listing
September 2021

Structural insights into sphingosine-1-phosphate recognition and ligand selectivity of S1PR3-Gi signaling complexes.

Cell Res 2022 Feb 20;32(2):218-221. Epub 2021 Sep 20.

Division of Nephrology and Kidney Research Institute, State Key Laboratory of Biotherapy and Cancer Center, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu, Sichuan, China.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41422-021-00567-wDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8807817PMC
February 2022

Image Processing for Public Health Surveillance of Tobacco Point-of-Sale Advertising: Machine Learning-Based Methodology.

J Med Internet Res 2021 08 27;23(8):e24408. Epub 2021 Aug 27.

Truth Initiative Schroeder Institute, Washington, DC, United States.

Background: With a rapidly evolving tobacco retail environment, it is increasingly necessary to understand the point-of-sale (POS) advertising environment as part of tobacco surveillance and control. Advances in machine learning and image processing suggest the ability for more efficient and nuanced data capture than previously available.

Objective: The study aims to use machine learning algorithms to discover the presence of tobacco advertising in photographs of tobacco POS advertising and their location in the photograph.

Methods: We first collected images of the interiors of tobacco retailers in West Virginia and the District of Columbia during 2016 and 2018. The clearest photographs were selected and used to create a training and test data set. We then used a pretrained image classification network model, Inception V3, to discover the presence of tobacco logos and a unified object detection system, You Only Look Once V3, to identify logo locations.

Results: Our model was successful in identifying the presence of advertising within images, with a classification accuracy of over 75% for 8 of the 42 brands. Discovering the location of logos within a given photograph was more challenging because of the relatively small training data set, resulting in a mean average precision score of 0.72 and an intersection over union score of 0.62.

Conclusions: Our research provides preliminary evidence for a novel methodological approach that tobacco researchers and other public health practitioners can apply in the collection and processing of data for tobacco or other POS surveillance efforts. The resulting surveillance information can inform policy adoption, implementation, and enforcement. Limitations notwithstanding, our analysis shows the promise of using machine learning as part of a suite of tools to understand the tobacco retail environment, make policy recommendations, and design public health interventions at the municipal or other jurisdictional scale.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2196/24408DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8433867PMC
August 2021

miR-153 attenuates the inflammatory response and oxidative stress induced by spinal cord injury by targeting of NEUROD2.

Am J Transl Res 2021 15;13(7):7968-7975. Epub 2021 Jul 15.

Department of Orthopaedics, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Southern Medical University Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, China.

Objective: Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a common spine surgical injury that leads to loss of activities of daily living. NEUROD2, a member of the neuroD family, is newly known to play a crucial role in SCI progression. We aimed to investigate the underlying mechanism wherein miR-153 and NEUROD2 modulate the process of SCI.

Methods: Expression of miR-153 and NEUROD2 in spinal cord in mice of SCI were analyzed employing western blot and qRT-PCR assays. Microglial cells were transfected with mimic of miR-153 or siRNA targeting NEUROD2 to determine the impact of miR-153 and NEUROD2 on SCI induced inflammatory reaction and oxidative stress. A luciferase reporter assay was conducted to verify the regulation of miR-153 on NERUOD2.

Results: MiR-153 expression was decreased in injured spinal cord, while NERUOD2 was increased in a time-dependent manner. Addition of miR-153 mimic or silencing NERUOD2 might significantly inhibit the production of inflammation cytokines and attenuated oxidative stress in microglia cells of SCI. Luciferase reporter assay suggested that NERUOD2 was a direct target of miR-153.

Conclusion: We proved that miR-153 attenuated inflammatory response and oxidative stress induced by SCI by targeting of NEUROD2, indicating a protective role in SCI progression.
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8340145PMC
July 2021

Prognostic Value of Combined Preoperative Carcinoembryonic Antigen and Prognostic Nutritional Index in Patients With Stage II-III Colon Cancer.

Front Surg 2021 20;8:667154. Epub 2021 Jul 20.

Department of Emergency, The First Affiliated Hospital of Guangxi Medical University, Nanning, China.

Tumor status can affect patient prognosis. Prognostic nutritional index (PNI), as a nutritional indicator, is closely related to the prognosis of cancer. However, few studies have examined the combined prognostic value of CEA and PNI in patients. This study investigated the relationship between CEA/PNI and prognosis of colon cancer patients. A total of 513 patients with stage II-III colon cancer who underwent curative resection at two medical centers from 2009 to 2019 were included. Clinicopathological factors were assessed and overall survival (OS) was assessed in a cohort of 413 patients. Multivariate analysis was used to identify independent prognostic variables to construct histograms predicting 1-year and 3-year OS. Data from 100 independent patients in the validation group was used to validate the prognostic model. The median OS time was 33.6 months, and mortality was observed in 54 patients. Multivariate analysis revealed that preoperative CEA/PNI, lymph node metastasis, peripheral nerve invasion, operation mode, and postoperative chemotherapy were independent factors for prognosis evaluation and thus were utilized to develop the nomogram. The C-index was 0.788 in the learning set and 0.836 in the validation set. The calibration curves reached favorable consensus among the 1-, 3-year OS prediction and actual observation. The combined use of CEA and PNI is an independent prognostic factor and thus can serve as a basis for a model to predict the prognosis of patients with stage II-III colon cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fsurg.2021.667154DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8329091PMC
July 2021

Erratum for Li et al., "Molecular Basis of the Versatile Regulatory Mechanism of HtrA-Type Protease AlgW from Pseudomonas aeruginosa".

mBio 2021 Aug 13;12(4):e0164021. Epub 2021 Jul 13.

Center of Infectious Diseases, State Key Laboratory of Biotherapy, West China Hospital, Sichuan Universitygrid.13291.38 and Collaborative Innovation Center, Chengdu, China.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/mBio.01640-21DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8406303PMC
August 2021

Adenomatoid Tumor of the Adrenal Gland: Report of Two Cases and Review of the Literature.

Front Endocrinol (Lausanne) 2021 23;12:692553. Epub 2021 Jun 23.

Department of Pathology, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, China.

Adenomatoid tumor (AT) is an uncommon benign neoplasm of mesothelial origin, usually occurring in the female and male genital tracts. Extragenital localization such as the adrenal gland is extremely rare. Until now, only 39 cases of adrenal AT have been reported in the English literature. Here we report two novel cases of adrenal AT that occurred in male patients aged 30 and 31 years. The tumors were discovered incidentally by computed tomography (CT). Macroscopically, the tumors were unilateral and solid, and the greatest dimension of the tumors was 3.5 and 8.0 cm, respectively. Histologically, the tumors consisted of angiomatoid, cystic, and solid patterns and infiltrated the adrenal cortical or medullary tissue. The tumor cells had low nuclear/cytoplasmic ratio, with no pathological mitosis or nuclear pleomorphism. Thread-like bridging strands and signet-ring-like cells could be seen. Immunohistochemically, the tumor cells were positive for epithelial markers (AE1/AE3, CK7) and mesothelial markers (D2-40, calretinin, and WT-1). The Ki-67 index was approximately 1 and 2%, respectively. The differential diagnosis of adrenal AT includes a variety of benign and malignant tumors. The patients had neither local recurrence nor distant metastasis at 21 and 8 months after removal of the tumor. In the literature review, we comprehensively summarized the clinical, morphological, immunohistochemical, and prognostic features of adrenal AT. Adrenal ATs are morphologically and immunophenotypically identical to those that occur in the genital tracts. Combining the histology with immunohistochemical profiles is very supportive in reaching the diagnosis of this benign tumor, helping to avoid misdiagnosis and overtreatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fendo.2021.692553DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8261242PMC
January 2022

A novel Hv1 inhibitor reveals a new mechanism of inhibition of a voltage-sensing domain.

J Gen Physiol 2021 09 6;153(9). Epub 2021 Jul 6.

Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, CA.

Voltage-gated sodium, potassium, and calcium channels consist of four voltage-sensing domains (VSDs) that surround a central pore domain and transition from a down state to an up state in response to membrane depolarization. While many types of drugs bind pore domains, the number of organic molecules known to bind VSDs is limited. The Hv1 voltage-gated proton channel is made of two VSDs and does not contain a pore domain, providing a simplified model for studying how small ligands interact with VSDs. Here, we describe a ligand, named HIF, that interacts with the Hv1 VSD in the up and down states. We find that HIF rapidly inhibits proton conduction in the up state by blocking the open channel, as previously described for 2-guanidinobenzimidazole and its derivatives. HIF, however, interacts with a site slowly accessible in the down state. Functional studies and MD simulations suggest that this interaction traps the compound in a narrow pocket lined with charged residues within the VSD intracellular vestibule, which results in slow recovery from inhibition. Our findings point to a "wrench in gears" mechanism whereby side chains within the binding pocket trap the compound as the teeth of interlocking gears. We propose that the use of screening strategies designed to target binding sites with slow accessibility, similar to the one identified here, could lead to the discovery of new ligands capable of interacting with VSDs of other voltage-gated ion channels in the down state.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1085/jgp.202012833DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8263925PMC
September 2021

HIFs: New arginine mimic inhibitors of the Hv1 channel with improved VSD-ligand interactions.

J Gen Physiol 2021 09 6;153(9). Epub 2021 Jul 6.

Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, CA.

The human voltage-gated proton channel Hv1 is a drug target for cancer, ischemic stroke, and neuroinflammation. It resides on the plasma membrane and endocytic compartments of a variety of cell types, where it mediates outward proton movement and regulates the activity of NOX enzymes. Its voltage-sensing domain (VSD) contains a gated and proton-selective conduction pathway, which can be blocked by aromatic guanidine derivatives such as 2-guanidinobenzimidazole (2GBI). Mutation of Hv1 residue F150 to alanine (F150A) was previously found to increase 2GBI apparent binding affinity more than two orders of magnitude. Here, we explore the contribution of aromatic interactions between the inhibitor and the channel in the presence and absence of the F150A mutation, using a combination of electrophysiological recordings, classic mutagenesis, and site-specific incorporation of fluorinated phenylalanines via nonsense suppression methodology. Our data suggest that the increase in apparent binding affinity is due to a rearrangement of the binding site allowed by the smaller residue at position 150. We used this information to design new arginine mimics with improved affinity for the nonrearranged binding site of the wild-type channel. The new compounds, named "Hv1 Inhibitor Flexibles" (HIFs), consist of two "prongs," an aminoimidazole ring, and an aromatic group connected by extended flexible linkers. Some HIF compounds display inhibitory properties that are superior to those of 2GBI, thus providing a promising scaffold for further development of high-affinity Hv1 inhibitors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1085/jgp.202012832DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8263924PMC
September 2021

Opening Fukushima floodgates: Modelling Cs impact in marine biota.

Mar Pollut Bull 2021 Sep 23;170:112645. Epub 2021 Jun 23.

First Institute of Oceanography, Ministry of Natural Resources, Qingdao 266061, China.

A numerical model was applied to simulate the transport of Cs released with the waters which were used to cool Fukushima reactors. These stored waters will be released to the Pacific Ocean according to Japanese government plans. The radionuclide transport model is Lagrangian and includes radionuclide interactions with sediments and an integrated dynamic foodweb model for biota uptake. Calculations made from a conservative approach indicate that expected concentrations in sediments and marine fish would be orders of magnitude below those detected after Fukushima accident and also lower than those resulting from global fallout background.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.marpolbul.2021.112645DOI Listing
September 2021

Transport and dispersion of tritium from the radioactive water of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

Mar Pollut Bull 2021 Aug 21;169:112515. Epub 2021 May 21.

First Institute of Oceanography, Ministry of Natural Resources, Qingdao 266061, China; Laboratory for Regional Oceanography and Numerical Modeling, Pilot National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology (Qingdao), Qingdao 266237, China; Key Laboratory of Marine Science and Numerical Modeling, Ministry of Natural Resources, Qingdao 266061, China; Shandong Key Laboratory of Marine Science and Numerical Modeling, Qingdao 266061, China. Electronic address:

Japan recently announced plans to discharge over 1.2 million tons of radioactive water from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP) into the Pacific Ocean. The contaminated water can poses a threat to marine ecosystems and human health. To estimate the impact of the plan, here, we developed a three-dimensional global model to track the transport and dispersion of tritium released from the radioactive water of the FDNPP. The pollution scenarios for four release durations (1 month, 1 year, 5 years, and 10 years) were simulated. The simulation results showed that for the release in short-duration scenarios (1 month and 1 year), the peak plume with high tritium concentration shifted with the currents and finally reached the northeastern Pacific. For the long-duration scenarios (5 years and 10 years), the peak plume of the contaminated water was confined to coastal regions east of Japan.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.marpolbul.2021.112515DOI Listing
August 2021
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