Publications by authors named "Junhua Zhang"

408 Publications

Apogossypolone Inhibits Cell Proliferation and Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition in Cervical Cancer Activating DKK3.

Front Oncol 2022 18;12:948023. Epub 2022 Jul 18.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Qilu Hospital of Shandong University, Jinan, China.

Apogossypolone (ApoG2), a novel derivative of gossypol lacking of two aldehyde groups, exhibits anti-tumor effects. However, the mechanisms by which ApoG2 regulates cervical cancer (CC) cells remain unclear. In this study, we treated two CC cell lines (CaSki and HeLa) with an increasing concentration of ApoG2 for 24 h. Cell Counting Kit-8 (CCK-8) assay, colony formation assay, flow cytometry and transwell invasion assay were utilized to detect cell proliferation, apoptosis and invasion . We first observed that ApoG2 inhibited cell proliferation, invasion and epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) process in CC cells, along with upregulation of Dickkopf Wnt signaling pathway inhibitor 3 (DKK3) in a dose-dependent manner. The immunohistochemistry confirmed the downregulation of DKK3 in tumor tissues. Moreover, DKK3 was correlated with FIGO stage and lymph node metastasis. Functionally, DKK3 overexpression significantly suppressed cell viability, colony formation and invasion, but promoted apoptosis in CaSki and HeLa cells. Overexpression of DKK3 upregulated the protein levels of cleaved caspase-3 and E-cadherin, but downregulated the protein levels of Bcl-2, N-cadherin and Vimentin. Furthermore, DKK3 knockdown reversed the suppressive effects of ApoG2 on CaSki cell proliferation, invasion and EMT markers, while DKK3 overexpression enhanced these effects. In addition, ApoG2 treatment inhibited CC xenograft tumor growth and upregulated the protein levels of DKK3, cleaved caspase-3 and E-cadherin. In conclusions, these findings suggested that ApoG2 could effectively inhibit the growth and invasion of CC cells at least partly by activating DKK3.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fonc.2022.948023DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9341244PMC
July 2022

Dose escalation based on F-FDG PET/CT response in definitive chemoradiotherapy of locally advanced esophageal squamous cell carcinoma: a phase III, open-label, randomized, controlled trial (ESO-Shanghai 12).

Radiat Oncol 2022 Jul 29;17(1):134. Epub 2022 Jul 29.

Department of Radiation Oncology, Fudan University Shanghai Cancer Center, Shanghai, China.

Introduction: Definitive chemoradiotherapy has established the standard non-surgical treatment for locally advanced esophageal cancer. The standard dose of 50-50.4 Gy has been established decades ago and been confirmed in modern trials. The theorical advantage of better local control and technical advances for less toxicity have encouraged clinicians for dose escalation investigation. F-fluorodeoxyglucose (F-FDG) positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) have the potential to tailor therapy for esophageal patients not showing response to CRT and pioneers the PET-based dose escalation.

Methods And Analysis: The ESO-Shanghai 12 trial is a prospective multicenter randomized phase 3 study in which patients are randomized to either 61.2 Gy or 50.4 Gy of radiation dose by PET response. Both groups undergo concurrent chemoradiotherapy with paclitaxel/cisplatin regimen for 2 cycles followed by consolidation chemotherapy for 2 cycles. Patients with histologically confirmed ESCC [T1N1-3M0, T2-4NxM0, TxNxM1 (Supraclavicular lymph node metastasis only), (AJCC Cancer Staging Manual, 8th Edition)] and without any prior treatment of chemotherapy, radiotherapy or surgery against esophageal cancer will be eligible. The primary endpoints included overall survival in PET/CT non-responders (SUV > 4.0) and overall survival in total population. Patients will be stratified by standardized uptake volume, gross tumor volume and tumor location. The enrollment could be ended, when the number of PET/CT non-responder reached 132 and the total population reached 646 for randomization.

Ethics And Dissemination: This trial has been approved by the Fudan University Shanghai Cancer Center Institutional Review Board. Trial results will be disseminated via peer reviewed scientific journals and conference presentations. Trial registration The trial was initiated in 2018 and is currently recruiting patients. Trial registration number NCT03790553.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13014-022-02099-yDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9338557PMC
July 2022

Evaluation of 5-aminolevulinic acid-mediated photodynamic therapy in postmenopausal women with persistent HPV infection with or without cervical and vaginal low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions (CIN1/VaIN1).

Photodiagnosis Photodyn Ther 2022 Jul 10;39:103009. Epub 2022 Jul 10.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Qilu Hospital of Shandong University, No. 107 West Wenhua Road, Jinan, Shandong 250012, China. Electronic address:

Objective: To analyze the efficacy and safety of photodynamic therapy (PDT) on postmenopausal women with persistent human papillomavirus (HPV) infection with or without low-grade cervical and vaginal intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN1 and VaIN1).

Materials And Methods: The clinicopathological and follow-up data of 86 postmenopausal women with HPV infection (35 cases with chronic cervicitis and 51 cases with CIN1/VaIN1) were collected. All the women in this group met these criteria: menopausal time ≥ 1 year, HPV infection time ≥ 2 years, colposcopy and pathological diagnosis of biopsy ≤ CIN1/VaIN1 before PDT treatment, and 5-aminolaevulinic acid (5-ALA) as photosensitizer treating for 6 times with a week interval. The above patients were followed up 6 months and 12 months after PDT treatment, and the follow-up contents included HPV typing, cytology, colposcopy and pathological examinations. HPV negative conversion rate and lesion remission rate are the evaluation indicators of treatment efficacy. In addition, we also assessed the safety of PDT treatment.

Results: At 12-month follow-up, the overall HPV clearance rate was 60% (45/75), of which the negative conversion rate of 16/18 HPV was 41.38% (12/29), and non-16/18 HPV was 71.74% (33/46) (p = 0.009). In patients without lesions, the HPV clearance rate was 51.72% (15/29), while in patients with CIN1/VaIN1 (n = 46), the HPV complete remission rate and lesion regression rate were 65.22% (30/46) and 89.13% (41/46), respectively. In addition, the clearance rate of HPV in lesion regression group was significantly higher than that in lesion persistence/progression group (0.00% vs. 73.17%, p = 0.003). The adverse reactions after PDT treatment were mild, mainly manifested as increased vaginal secretions or burning/tingling.

Conclusions: Photodynamic therapy can significantly enhance the elimination rate of persistent HPV infection in postmenopausal women and reduce the progression of CIN1/VaIN1. It could be an effective conservative treatment for persistent HPV infection and CIN1/VaIN1 in postmenopausal women.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pdpdt.2022.103009DOI Listing
July 2022

Development of a reporting guideline for systematic reviews of animal experiments in the field of traditional Chinese medicine.

J Evid Based Med 2022 Jun 30;15(2):152-167. Epub 2022 Jun 30.

Evidence-Based Medicine Center, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou, China.

Objective: In recent years, there are several systematic reviews published on animal experiments of Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). PRISMA (preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analysis) guidelines provide a guarantee for significantly improving the reporting quality of systematic reviews (SRs) and meta-analysis (MAs) to a certain extent; however, there are still certain defects found in the quality of SRs/MAs of animal experiments of TCM. It has been found that especially, the descriptions of the rationale and animal characteristics of TCM interventions are inadequate. As a result, we have developed a novel reporting guideline for SRs/MAs of animal experimental in the field of TCM (PRISMA-ATCM) to overcome these problems.

Methods: PRISMA-ATCM reporting guidelines were formed by analyzing both the status and quality of published SRs/MAs of animal experiments and consulting experts in the related fields, and then by Delphi consultation, consensus meeting and revision.

Results: Among the 27 items on the PRISMA checklist, Title (1), Structured summary (2), Rationale (3), Objectives (4), Protocol and registration (5), Eligibility criteria (6), Data items (11), Planned methods of analysis (14), Study characteristics (18), Summary of evidence (24), Limitations (25), and Funding (27) have been extensively revised and expanded, to specifically include the details about TCM intervention and animal characteristics. In addition, illustrative examples and explanations have been provided for each item.

Conclusion: PRISMA-ATCM could markedly improve the quality SRs/MAs of animal experiments in the field of TCM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jebm.12480DOI Listing
June 2022

Comparative efficacy and acceptability of cognitive behavioral therapy delivery formats for insomnia in adults: A systematic review and network meta-analysis.

Sleep Med Rev 2022 May 31;64:101648. Epub 2022 May 31.

Evidence-Based Medicine Center, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou, China; Key Laboratory of Evidence-based Medicine and Knowledge Translation of Gansu Province, Lanzhou, China. Electronic address:

This review compared the efficacy and acceptability of different delivery formats for cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I) in insomnia. We searched five databases for randomized clinical trials that compared one CBT-I delivery format against another format or control conditions for insomnia in adults. We used pairwise meta-analyses and frequentist network meta-analyses with the random-effects model to synthesize data. A total of 61 unique trials including 11,571 participants compared six CBT-I delivery formats with four control conditions. At post-intervention, with low to high certainty evidence, individual, group, guided self-help, digital assisted, and unguided self-help CBT-I could significantly increase sleep efficiency and total sleep time (TST) and reduce sleep onset latency (SOL), wake after sleep onset (WASO), and insomnia severity compared with treatment as usual (MD range for sleep efficiency: 7.81%-12.45%; MD range for TST: 16.14-33.96 min; MD range for SOL: -22.42 to -13.81 min; MD range for WASO: -40.84 to -19.48 min; MD range for insomnia severity: -6.40 to -3.93) and waitlist (MD range for sleep efficiency: 7.68%-12.32%; MD range for TST: 12.67-30.49 min; MD range for SOL: -19.07 to -10.46 min; MD range for WASO: -47.10 to -19.15 min; MD range for insomnia severity: -7.59 to -5.07). The effects of different CBT-I formats persisted at short-term follow-up (4 wk-6 mo). Individual, group, and digital assisted CBT-I delivery formats would be the more appropriate choices for insomnia in adults, based on post-intervention and short-term effects. Further trials are needed to investigate the long-term effects of different CBT-I formats.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.smrv.2022.101648DOI Listing
May 2022

Unearthing the Alleviatory Mechanisms of Brassinolide in Cold Stress in Rice.

Life (Basel) 2022 Jun 2;12(6). Epub 2022 Jun 2.

State Key Laboratory of Rice Biology, China National Rice Research Institute, Hangzhou 310006, China.

Cold stress inhibits rice germination and seedling growth. Brassinolide (BR) plays key roles in plant growth, development, and stress responses. In this study, we explored the underlying mechanisms whereby BR helps alleviate cold stress in rice seedlings. BR application to the growth medium significantly increased seed germination and seedling growth of the early rice cultivar "Zhongzao 39" after three days of cold treatment. Specifically, BR significantly increased soluble protein and soluble sugar contents after three days of cold treatment. Moreover, BR stimulated the activity of superoxide dismutase, catalase, peroxidase, and ascorbate peroxidase; thereby alleviating cold-induced damage and increasing glutathione content and the GSH/GSSG ratio while concomitantly reducing HO content. BR upregulated the expression levels of cold-response-related genes, including , , , , , , and and downregulated that of , overall alleviating cold stress symptoms. Thus, BR not only upregulated cellular osmotic content and the antioxidant enzyme system to maintain the physiological balance of reactive oxygen species under cold but, additionally, it regulated the expression of cold-response-related genes to alleviate cold stress symptoms. These results provide a theoretical basis for rice breeding for cold resistance using young seedlings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/life12060833DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9225285PMC
June 2022

Evaluation of an Ussing Chamber System Equipped with Rat Intestinal Tissues to Predict Intestinal Absorption and Metabolism in Humans.

Eur J Drug Metab Pharmacokinet 2022 Jun 22. Epub 2022 Jun 22.

Drug Metabolism and Pharmacokinetics (DMPK) Department, Pharmaron Beijing Co., Ltd., 6 Taihe Road, BDA, Beijing, 100176, China.

Background And Objective: Oral bioavailability (F) is one of the key factors that need to be determined in drug discovery. This factor is determined by the permeability and solubility of new molecule entities (NMEs) according to the biopharmaceutics classification system (BCS).

Methods: In the present study, we evaluated the permeability of 22 drugs in rat intestinal tissues using an Ussing chamber system and correlated the permeability with data on human intestinal absorption (F) and intestinal availability (F × F) reported in the literature.

Results: The rat intestinal permeability data were better correlated with the combined effect of the absorbed fraction (F) and the fraction escaping intestinal metabolism (F) than F itself. Clear regional dependent absorption was observed for most of the test drugs, and ileal P was generally higher than that in other segments. Finally, the function of the efflux transporter P-glycoprotein (P-gp) with regard to oral absorption of substrates was evaluated with an Ussing chamber. We also demonstrated that the rat intestinal stability of the three cytochrome P450 (CYP) substrates was consistent with the human data.

Conclusion: An Ussing chamber system incorporating rat intestinal tissue would be a valuable tool to predict human intestinal absorption and metabolism for molecules with various physicochemical properties.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s13318-022-00780-xDOI Listing
June 2022

Blocking TIGIT/CD155 signalling reverses CD8 T cell exhaustion and enhances the antitumor activity in cervical cancer.

J Transl Med 2022 06 21;20(1):280. Epub 2022 Jun 21.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Qilu Hospital, Cheeloo College of Medicine, Shandong University, Address: No.107, west culture road, Jinan, 250012, Shandong, China.

Objective: TIGIT/CD155 has attracted widespread attention as a new immune checkpoint and a potential target for cancer immunotherapy. In our study, we evaluated the role of TIGIT/CD155 checkpoints in the progression of cervical cancer.

Methods: The expression of CD155 and TIGIT in cervical cancer tissues was detected using flow cytometry, immunohistochemistry (IHC) and gene expression profiling. In vivo and in vitro experiments have proven that blocking TIGIT/CD155 restores the ability of CD8 T cells to produce cytokines. Changes in the NF-κB and ERK pathways were detected using western blotting (WB) after blocking TIGIT/CD155 signalling.

Results: TIGIT expression was elevated in patients with cervical cancer. High TIGIT expression in CD8 T lymphocytes from patients with cervical cancer promotes the exhaustion of CD8 T lymphocytes. In addition, CD155 is expressed at high levels in cervical cancer tissues and is negatively correlated with the level of infiltrating CD8 T cells. We found that TIGIT, upon binding to CD155 and being phosphorylated, inhibited NF-κB and ERK activation by recruiting SHIP-1, resulting in the downregulation of cytokine production. Blocking TIGIT in activated CD8 T cells attenuates the inhibitory effect of SHIP-1 on CD8 T cells and enhances the activation of NF-κB and ERK. In vivo and in vitro experiments have proven that blocking TIGIT/CD155 restores the ability of CD8 T cells to produce cytokines. Injecting the blocking antibody TIGIT in vivo inhibits tumour growth and enhances CD8 T lymphocyte function. Treatment with a combination of TIGIT and PD-1 inhibitors further increases the efficacy of the TIGIT blocking antibody.

Conclusions: Our research shows that TIGIT/CD155 is a potential therapeutic target for cervical cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12967-022-03480-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9210727PMC
June 2022

Traditional Chinese Medicine for COVID-19: A Network Meta-Analysis and Systematic Review.

Am J Chin Med 2022 ;50(4):883-925

Evidence-Based Medicine Center, Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Tianjin 301617, P. R. China.

To compare the efficacy of different traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) therapies for the treatment of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and provide a higher level of evidence in the form of network meta-analysis (NMA) and systematic review. We searched the studies from the following databases: CNKI, VIP, WanFang, SinoMed, PubMed, Embase, and Web of Science from the establishment of the respective database until December 2021. Relevant studies were screened according to the pre-established inclusion criteria. The quality of the included randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and controlled clinical trials (CCTs) were assessed using the risk of bias (ROB) tool and the Methodological Index for Non-Randomized Studies (MINORS), respectively. R software 4.1.1 and Stata 13.1 were used for data analysis and mapping. A total of 34 studies were included in this network meta-analysis that tested 24 TCM interventions and included 3443 patients. Using cluster analysis of time to negative SARS-CoV-2 reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), the length of hospital stay and composite events, we found that Jinyinhua oral liquid (JYH, 120 mL) + conventional Western medicine (CWM) has the highest SUCRA value at 88.64%, 85.61% and 84.24%. The traditional meta-analysis results revealed that Qingfei Paidu decoction + CWM were significantly different compared with CWM alone for the score of clinical symptoms (MD =-0.75, 95% CI [-1.04, -0.47]). Nine studies reported 57 adverse reactions (ADRs) and 3 adverse events (ADEs) in TCM + CWM groups, and eight studies reported 33 ADRs and 8 ADEs in CWM groups. In conclusion, the combination of TCM and CWM approaches may enhance the efficacy of CWM in COVID-19 patients. Based on the NMA result, JYH (120 mL) + CWM may be a more effective treatment and deserves further investigation. However, the differences in many comparisons between TCM interventions did not reach statistical significance; therefore, further high-quality studies are required to validate these findings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1142/S0192415X22500379DOI Listing
June 2022

Automatic Cobb angle measurement method based on vertebra segmentation by deep learning.

Med Biol Eng Comput 2022 Aug 9;60(8):2257-2269. Epub 2022 Jun 9.

School of Information, Yunnan University, East outer ring south road, Kunming, 650504, China.

The accuracy of the Cobb measurement is essential for the diagnosis and treatment of scoliosis. Manual measurement is however influenced by the observer variability hence affecting progression evaluation. In this paper, we propose a fully automatic Cobb measurement method to address the accuracy issue of manual measurement. We improve the U-shaped network based on the multi-scale feature fusion to segment each vertebra. To enable multi-scale feature extraction, the convolution kernel of the U-shaped network is substituted by the Inception Block. To solve the problem of gradient disappearance caused by the widening of the network structure from the Inception Block, we propose using Res Block. CBAM (Convolutional Block Attention Module) can help the network judges the importance of the feature map to modify learning weight. Also, to further enhance the accuracy of feature extraction, we add the CBAM to the U-shaped network bottleneck. Finally, based on the segmented vertebrae, the efficient automatic Cobb angle measurement method is proposed to estimate the Cobb angle. In the experiments, 75 spinal X-ray images are tested. We compare the proposed U-Shaped network with the state-of-the-art methods including DeepLabV3 + , FCN8S, SegNet, U-Net, U-Net +  + , BASNet, and UNet for vertebra segmentation. Our results show that compared to these methods, the Dice coefficient is improved by 32.03%, 33.58%, 12.42%, 5.65%, 4.55%, 4.42%, and 3.27%, respectively. The CMAE of the calculated Cobb measurement is 2.45°, which is lower than the average error of 5-7° of manual measurement. The experimental results indicate that the improved U-shaped network improves the accuracy of vertebra segmentation. The proposed efficient automatic Cobb measurement method can be used in clinics to reduce observer variability.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11517-022-02563-7DOI Listing
August 2022

Characterization and Genetic Diversity of pv. Isolates Associated with Rice Bacterial Leaf Spot in Heilongjiang, China.

Biology (Basel) 2022 May 8;11(5). Epub 2022 May 8.

College of Agriculture, Northeast Agricultural University, Harbin 150030, China.

In China, rice is one of the most important cereal crops. Rice bacterial brown leaf spot caused by pv. is among the most damaging rice diseases in the Heilongjiang Province of China and results in substantial yield losses. In this study, a comprehensive analysis of the pathogen, population structure, and genetic diversity within the species was performed. For this purpose, 176 bacterial isolates of pv. collected from 15 locations were characterized by using biochemical tests such as the LOPAT test, and genetic characterizations such as multilocus sequence analysis (MLSA) and repetitive PCR, using BOX, REP and ERIC primers. Biochemical testing and detection of genes confirm the presence of pv. genetic characterization by MLSA and genetic fingerprinting by repetitive PCR confirmed that high genetic heterogeneity exists in the pv. isolates, and clustering of the tested isolates and reference strains are related with the same genomospecies 1. This work contributes to the physiological classification of the pv. isolated from Heilongjiang Province, China, and the results present new data concerning the phylogeny and genetic diversity. This type of study about pv. has been not reported from this region until now.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/biology11050720DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9138427PMC
May 2022

Genetic variation and structure of complete chloroplast genome in alien monoecious and dioecious Amaranthus weeds.

Sci Rep 2022 05 18;12(1):8255. Epub 2022 May 18.

Institute of Plant Inspection and Quarantine, Chinese Academy of Inspection and Quarantine, Beijing, 100176, China.

Amaranthus is a complex taxon with economic importance as well as harmful weeds. We studied the genetic variation and structure of the chloroplast genomes of 22 samples from 17 species of three subgenera. It was found that the length of the chloroplast genome of Amaranthus varied from 149,949 bp of A. polygonoides to 150,757 bp of A. albus. The frequencies of SNPs and InDels in chloroplast genomes were 1.79% and 2.86%, and the variation mainly occurred in the non-coding regions. The longest InDel was 387 bp, which occurred on ycf2, followed by 384 bp InDel on psbM-trnD. Two InDels in ndhE-I on the SSC make the three subgenera clearly distinguished. In LSC, SSC and IRs regions, there were four 30 bp forward and reverse repeats, and the repeats in SSC and LSC were in nearly opposite positions in circular genome structure, and almost divided the circular genome into symmetrical structures. In the topological tree constructed by chloroplast genome, species in subgen. Amaranthus and subgen. Acnida form monophyletic branches separately and cluster together. A. albus, A. blitoides and A. polygonoides were separated from subgen. Albersia, and the rest of subgen. Albersia were clustered into a monophyletic branch. The rpoC2, ycf1, ndhF-rpl32 were good at distinguishing most amaranths. The trnk-UUU-atpF, trnT-UGU-atpB, psbE-clpP, rpl14-rps19, and ndhF-D can distinguish several similar species. In general, the chloroplast genome is of certain value for the identification of the similar species of Amaranthus, which provides more evidence for clarifying the phylogenetic relationships within the genus.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-022-11983-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9117656PMC
May 2022

Herbal medicine for COVID-19: An overview of systematic reviews and meta-analysis.

Phytomedicine 2022 Jul 28;102:154136. Epub 2022 Apr 28.

KM Science Research Division, Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine, Daejeon, Republic of Korea; Korean Convergence Medicine, University of Science and Technology, Daejeon, Republic of Korea. Electronic address:

Background: As coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues to spread throughout countries, researchers and scientific groups have published a large number of scientific papers examining effective treatments and prevention strategies for COVID-19, including herbal medicine. It has become difficult to navigate the increasing volume of scientific material on the pandemic, and critical appraisal of these outcomes is needed. This overview of systematic reviews (SRs) aims to synthesize evidence from SRs and summarize the effects of herbal medicine interventions in the treatment of COVID-19.

Methods: Four databases were searched from inception up to October 20, 2021. SRs analyzing primary studies of the efficacy of herbal medications for treating COVID-19 were included. Two reviewers selected the studies and retrieved the data independently. The AMSTAR 2 (A Measurement Tool to Assess Systematic Reviews) was used to assess the methodological quality of the included SRs.

Results: A total of 21 SRs on herbal medicine treatments for COVID-19 were included. All SRs were published between May 2020 and September 2021. Thirteen of the SRs included only randomized controlled trials (RCTs), whereas the remaining eight included evidence from nonrandomized trials in addition to RCTs, with a significant overlap identified across the RCTs. Twelve SRs concluded that existing evidence was insufficient to form a definite judgment, nine found that herbal therapy was useful, and none indicated that herbal medicine had no benefit. The AMSTAR 2 tool revealed that the methodological quality of the included SRs was generally low.

Conclusion: In this overview of SRs, we reviewed herbal medicine-related evidence from 21 SRs that were published after the outbreak of COVID-19. This study shows that while there is considerable evidence demonstrating the advantages of herbal medicine interventions, the quality of the evidence is inadequate to provide solid and accurate judgments about the effectiveness of herbal medicine therapies for COVID-19. Despite the crisis caused by the pandemic, clinical studies and SRs should comply with established methodological standards.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.phymed.2022.154136DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9045877PMC
July 2022

One-step sodium bisulfate hydrolysis for efficient production of xylooligosaccharides from poplar.

Bioresour Technol 2022 Jul 5;355:127269. Epub 2022 May 5.

Jiangsu Co-Innovation Center of Efficient Processing and Utilization of Forest Resources, College of Chemical Engineering, Nanjing Forestry University, Nanjing 210037, China; Key Laboratory of Forestry Genetics & Biotechnology (Nanjing Forestry University), Ministry of Education, Nanjing 210037, China; College of Forestry, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, China. Electronic address:

Acid salts have been shown to catalyze xylan hydrolysis selectively and efficiently for xylooligosaccharides (XOS) production while using acid salts that are non-toxic and available as feed additives can avoid separation from resulting XOS-rich hydrolysates. There is no report on XOS production with sodium bisulfate (NaHSO) hydrolysis, of significance is that NaHSO as feed additive does not need to be separated. In this work, NaHSO hydrolysis was firstly employed to produce XOS from poplar. XOS yield of 42.7% was reached under optimal conditions of 0.04 mol/L NaHSO, 170 °C and 60 min. After hydrogen peroxide/acetic acid and sodium hydroxide treatments of NaHSO-pretreated poplar, high yields of glucose (92.0%) and xylose (91.3%) were obtained at a low cellulase dose of 5 FPU/g dry mass. NaHSO hydrolysis was a novel strategy to prepare XOS efficiently with simple operation steps, and XOS-rich hydrolysates could be potentially used as feed additives without NaHSO separation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biortech.2022.127269DOI Listing
July 2022

Memory-like response in platelet attenuates platelet hyperactivation in arterial thrombosis.

Biochem Biophys Res Commun 2022 07 13;612:154-161. Epub 2022 Apr 13.

Laboratory of Ethnopharmacology, Tissue-orientated Property of Chinese Medicine Key Laboratory of Sichuan Province, West China School of Medicine, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu, Sichuan, China. Electronic address:

Recent studies showed that in responding of pathogens stimulation, immune cells and other cells display memory-like effects. Platelets are primary effectors of hemostasis and thrombosis which also participate in immune responses. However, there is no relevant research on whether memory-like effect exists in platelets. In our study after recovery from repetitive LPS stimulus, platelets aggregation, diffusion and clot retraction exhibit a significant reduction. It proves that memory-like response could be aroused in platelets. Furthermore, in the mouse arterial thrombosis model, LPS pretreated platelets showed lower integrin activation, shorter thrombus length and longer occlusion time, indicating that the memory-like response of platelet could alleviate arterial thrombosis. Moreover, memory-like response of platelets was also found to be related to PI3K/AKT signaling pathway. The decreased mitochondrial DNA methylation reveal that platelet memory-like responses may be produced from epigenetic reprogramming. Our research proves for the first time that memory-like response in platelets protects mice from arterial thrombosis, extends the understanding of trained memory.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbrc.2022.04.018DOI Listing
July 2022

Social exclusion modulates neural dynamics of monetary and social reward processing in young adult females.

Biol Psychol 2022 05 4;171:108344. Epub 2022 May 4.

Department of Applied Psychology, College of Public Administration, Guangdong University of Foreign Studies, Guangzhou, China.

Evidence suggests that social exclusion increases one's sensitivity to monetary and social rewards. However, whether and how social exclusion modulates the neural dynamics of reward processing remains unknown. The current study aimed to address this gap by systematically investigating the differential influences of social exclusion on various stages of monetary and social reward processing. Forty-five female participants were recruited, and the Cyberball game was used to manipulate social exclusion. To disentangle the anticipatory and consummatory stages of monetary and social reward processing, we recorded event-related potentials during two incentive delay tasks, one with a monetary reward and one with a social reward. The results showed that during the anticipatory stage, a larger contingent negative variation was observed for the exclusion group than for the inclusion group, regardless of reward type. During the consummatory stage, although the reward-related positivity was larger in the exclusion group than in the inclusion group, this difference was only observed for the social, and not monetary, reward feedback. These findings advance our understanding of the relationship between social exclusion and reward processing and suggest that while social exclusion might exert comparable enhancement effect for monetary and social reward processing during the anticipatory stage, it exerts a specific enhancement effect for social reward processing during the consummatory stage.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsycho.2022.108344DOI Listing
May 2022

Ultrasound image denoising using generative adversarial networks with residual dense connectivity and weighted joint loss.

PeerJ Comput Sci 2022 16;8:e873. Epub 2022 Feb 16.

School of Information Science and Engineering, Yunnan University, Kunming, Yunnan, China.

Background: Ultrasound imaging has been recognized as a powerful tool in clinical diagnosis. Nonetheless, the presence of speckle noise degrades the signal-to-noise of ultrasound images. Various denoising algorithms cannot fully reduce speckle noise and retain image features well for ultrasound imaging. The application of deep learning in ultrasound image denoising has attracted more and more attention in recent years.

Methods: In the article, we propose a generative adversarial network with residual dense connectivity and weighted joint loss (GAN-RW) to avoid the limitations of traditional image denoising algorithms and surpass the most advanced performance of ultrasound image denoising. The denoising network is based on U-Net architecture which includes four encoder and four decoder modules. Each of the encoder and decoder modules is replaced with residual dense connectivity and BN to remove speckle noise. The discriminator network applies a series of convolutional layers to identify differences between the translated images and the desired modality. In the training processes, we introduce a joint loss function consisting of a weighted sum of the L1 loss function, binary cross-entropy with a logit loss function and perceptual loss function.

Results: We split the experiments into two parts. First, experiments were performed on Berkeley segmentation (BSD68) datasets corrupted by a simulated speckle. Compared with the eight existing denoising algorithms, the GAN-RW achieved the most advanced despeckling performance in terms of the peak signal-to-noise ratio (PSNR), structural similarity (SSIM), and subjective visual effect. When the noise level was 15, the average value of the GAN-RW increased by approximately 3.58% and 1.23% for PSNR and SSIM, respectively. When the noise level was 25, the average value of the GAN-RW increased by approximately 3.08% and 1.84% for PSNR and SSIM, respectively. When the noise level was 50, the average value of the GAN-RW increased by approximately 1.32% and 1.98% for PSNR and SSIM, respectively. Secondly, experiments were performed on the ultrasound images of lymph nodes, the foetal head, and the brachial plexus. The proposed method shows higher subjective visual effect when verifying on the ultrasound images. In the end, through statistical analysis, the GAN-RW achieved the highest mean rank in the Friedman test.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7717/peerj-cs.873DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9044345PMC
February 2022

Millefeuille-inspired highly conducting polymer nanocomposites based on controllable layer-by-layer assembly strategy for durable and stable electromagnetic interference shielding.

J Colloid Interface Sci 2022 Sep 25;622:97-108. Epub 2022 Apr 25.

State Key Laboratory of Polymer Materials Engineering, Polymer Research Institute of Sichuan University, Chengdu 610065, China. Electronic address:

High-performance conductive polymer nanocomposites containing two-dimensional (2D) MXene are garnering substantial interest for electromagnetic shielding interference (EMI) in flexible electronics. However, owing to the non-sticky nature and undesirable mechanical performances of freestanding MXene film, it remains a formidable challenge to make the trade-off between outstanding EMI shielding capability and high stability. In this study, inspired by the structure and manufacturing process of millefeuille cakes, we propose a controllably layer-by-layer assembling strategy for fabricating flexible multilayered EMI shielding composite films based on MXene and an inherently conductive polymer (ICP). The multilayer films bearing alternating aramid nanofibers/polypyrrole nanowires (AFPy) and TiCT reinforced by waterborne polyurethane ([email protected]) layers are orderly constructed by a facile alternating vacuum filtration method. Benefiting from the special architectures, the AFPy-70/[email protected] film exhibits a high electrical conductivity of 1.74 S cm and superior EMI shielding effectiveness of 40.9 dB at lower TiCT loading content (32 wt%). Moreover, synergistic integration of hydrogen bonding and π-π stacks in multilayered films is achieved, especially in tandem with controlled crack generation within the whole film. Excellent EMI shielding performance remains well maintained even after being suffered to back-and-forth bending test (over 10,000 cycles), ultrasonication, and cryogenic temperature, validating great potential as high-performance EMI shielding film resisting extreme conditions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcis.2022.04.096DOI Listing
September 2022

Lignin removal improves xylooligosaccharides production from poplar by acetic acid hydrolysis.

Bioresour Technol 2022 Jun 19;354:127190. Epub 2022 Apr 19.

Jiangsu Co-Innovation Center of Efficient Processing and Utilization of Forest Resources, College of Chemical Engineering, Nanjing Forestry University, Nanjing 210037, China; Key Laboratory of Forestry Genetics & Biotechnology (Nanjing Forestry University), Ministry of Education, Nanjing 210037, China; College of Forestry, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, China. Electronic address:

Organic acid hydrolysis is a potential method for xylooligosaccharides (XOS) production from lignocelluloses. However, the effect of lignin content on XOS production using organic acid hydrolysis remains unclear. In this work, the effect of delignification on XOS production from poplar by acetic acid (AC) hydrolysis was investigated. Hydrogen peroxide-acetic acid (HPAC) pretreatment catalyzed by 0-200 mM HSO (HPAC0-HPAC200) removed 21.6-86.5% of lignin in poplar. HPAC pretreatment increased the xylan accessibility to AC solution, thus increasing the xylan removal during AC hydrolysis. An appropriate delignification (61.7%) resulted in the highest XOS yield of 37.4% by AC hydrolysis, increased by 29.9% compared to the optimal XOS yield (28.8%) from raw poplar. After alkaline post-incubation, the glucose yield of poplar residue rose from 57.1% to 78.6%. This work developed a delignification process to efficiently improve XOS and monosaccharides production from poplar.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biortech.2022.127190DOI Listing
June 2022

Long-Term Results of a Phase 2 Study of Definitive Chemoradiation Therapy Using S-1 for Esophageal Squamous Cell Carcinoma Patients Who Were Elderly or With Serious Comorbidities.

Front Oncol 2022 5;12:839765. Epub 2022 Apr 5.

Department of Radiation Oncology, Fudan University Shanghai Cancer Center, Shanghai, China.

Background: The optimal evidence-based management for the subsets of locally advanced esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) patients who rejected or were intolerant to intravenous chemotherapy due to old age or serious comorbidities is currently lacking. This study aimed to assess the safety and local control rate (LCR) of S-1 (tegafur-gimeracil-oteracil potassium) combined with radiotherapy in these subsets of ESCC patients.

Methods: Locally advanced ESCC patients who rejected or were intolerant to intravenous chemotherapy due to age >75 years or serious comorbidities were enrolled in a prospective, single-arm, phase 2 trial. The patients were treated with definitive concurrent chemoradiotherapy with S-1, which was administered orally twice daily for 28 days. The radiotherapy dose was 61.2 Gy delivered in 34 fractions. The primary end-point was the 3-year LCR.

Results: One hundred five ESCC patients were recruited between March 2013 and October 2015. At the median follow-up of 73.1 months (IQR 65.5-81.4 months), 3-year LCR was 61.1%, and 1, 3, and 5-year overall survival was 77.9, 42.3, and 24.8% respectively. For safety analysis, ≥grade 3 acute adverse events included thrombocytopenia (6.7%), leukopenia (2.9%), anemia (1.0%), anorexia (1.0%), fatigue (10.5%), hiccup (1.0%), pneumonitis (4.8%), and esophagitis (3.8%). Two patients (1.9%) died of late esophageal hemorrhage, and one patient (1.0%) died of late radiation-induced pneumonitis.

Conclusion: S-1 is a promising regimen in concurrent chemoradiotherapy with low toxicity and a favorable LCR in ESCC patients who rejected or were intolerant to intravenous chemotherapy due to old age or serious comorbidities.

Clinical Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT01831531.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fonc.2022.839765DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9016823PMC
April 2022

FM-Net: Deep Learning Network for the Fundamental Matrix Estimation from Biplanar Radiographs.

Comput Methods Programs Biomed 2022 Jun 6;220:106782. Epub 2022 Apr 6.

The First People's Hospital of Yunnan Province.

Background And Objective: The fundamental matrix estimation is a classic problem in computer vision. The traditional algorithms require high-precision correspondences. However, correspondences in biplanar radiographs are difficult to match accurately.

Methods: We propose an end-to-end network to estimate the F-Matrix directly from BR, which includes feature extraction and regression prediction. There is no publicly available dataset of biplanar radiographs. We produce the dataset in this paper to train and test the proposed network. Four metrics, Mean Square Error, Calculating R-squared, Square Value of Extreme Constraint, and Absolute Value of Extreme Constraint are used to measure the performance of the approaches.

Results: The best Square Value of Extreme Constraint and Absolute Value of Extreme Constraint values we obtained on the datasets were 0.20 and 0.43, respectively. Compared with other methods, the estimation accuracy of FM-Net is improved by more than 53.53%.

Conclusions: The results of experiments demonstrate that the proposed network can estimate the fundamental matrix successfully. It outperforms the classical algorithms and other deep learning-based methods.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cmpb.2022.106782DOI Listing
June 2022

Qingjin Yiqi granules for post-COVID-19 condition: A randomized clinical trial.

J Evid Based Med 2022 Mar;15(1):30-38

State Key Laboratory of Component-Based Chinese Medicine, Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Tianjin, China.

Objective: To evaluate the effectiveness and safety of Qingjin Yiqi granules (QJYQ) on post-COVID-19 condition (PCC).

Method: Patients who met the inclusion criteria were randomly assigned to two groups, the QJYQ group received QJYQ combined with standard rehabilitation treatments (SRTs) and the control group only received SRTs. The treatment course was 14 days. The primary outcomes were modified Medical Research Council (mMRC) scale and Borg scale, while the secondary outcomes included symptoms score and 6-minute walking distance (6MWD). The safety outcome was the incidence of adverse events.

Results: A total of 388 patients with PCC were enrolled and randomly assigned to the QJYQ group (n = 194) and the control group (n = 194). Compared to the controls, the mMRC scale was improved in the QJYQ group, which was better than that of the control group [β (95%CI): -0.626 (-1.101, -0.151), p = 0.010]. A significant improvement in Borg scale was also observed in the QJYQ group compared to the control group [β (95%CI): -0.395(-0.744, -0.046), p = 0.026]. There was no statistically significant difference in symptoms score and 6MWD between the two groups (p = 0.293, p = 0.724). No treatment-related adverse events were observed in either group.

Conclusions: QJYQ can bring benefits to patients with PCC, mainly in the improvement of breathlessness and fatigue.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jebm.12465DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9114922PMC
March 2022

Difference responses of soil fungal communities to cattle and chicken manure composting application.

J Appl Microbiol 2022 Aug 13;133(2):323-339. Epub 2022 Apr 13.

School of Ecology and Environment, Ningxia University, Yinchuan, China.

Aims: Cattle and poultry manure composting are often applied on agricultural lands but the fungal community composition before and after application in soils is still unclear. This study describes soil fungal diversity after manure applications contribute to the correct resource use of livestock and poultry manures.

Methods And Results: Fresh manure samples were obtained from 10 beef cow farms and 12 egg-laying poultry farms at five distinct phases of rearing. Surface soil samples were collected from vegetable plots within the farms after manure application at 15, 30 and 45 t hm . Using high-throughput sequencing techniques, the ITS region was used to describe soil fungus populations. The fungal OTUs, Chao1 and ACE of cattle manure were relatively higher in the fattening stage (>12 months), the OTUs and ACE of chicken manure were the highest in the initial laying stage (16-24 weeks). The fungal diversity indices of vegetable soils had no linear change after cow or chicken manure application compared with the control. Ascomycota (84.7% of total sequences), Neocallimastigomycota (9.69%) and Basidiomycota (4.6%) were the dominant phyla in cattle manure. Ascomycota (88.9%) also predominated in chicken manure followed by Basidiomycota (8.9%). Following both cattle and chicken manure applications, the abundance of Ascomycota decreased, whereas Basidiomycota and Chytridiomycota increased in the soils. None of the dominant genus increased or decreased linearly with the increase of cattle and chicken composting application rate. The fungal-dominant genera of the soils with and without manure composting application were mostly affected by soil pH and EC than manure. Pearson's correlation analysis revealed that organic matter, Cu and Hg contents were strongly linked to the fungal diversity and the abundance of specific taxa in cattle manure. In chicken manure, OM, TN and Zn were major factors controlling the fungal diversity and community composition. Soil pH, EC and Cu, Zn, Cd, Hg and As content had pronounced effects on the beneficial and pathogenic genus in soil with and without manure composting. Beneficial fungal genus such as Aspergillus, Plectosphaerella, Acremonium, Meyerozyma and fungal pathogenic such as Fusarium, Cladosporium, Verticillium were sensitive to properties (EC, pH, OM) and heavy metals (Cu, Zn, Hg) contents of the environment relatively. This study can serve as an applicable contribution helping in farms management (especially to cattle and poultry breeding) and improving their resource use of livestock and poultry manures.

Conclusions: Soil heterogeneity rather than manure determines fungal communities in the vegetable fields, but we can encourage the sensible use of cattle and chicken manures in agroecosystems.

Significance And Impact Of The Study: This study will help farmers regulate the dosage of feed components which can increase the number of beneficial fungal genus or reduce the number of pathogenic fungal genus, improve their resource use of livestock and poultry manures and encourage the sensible use of cattle and chicken manures in agroecosystems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jam.15549DOI Listing
August 2022

Development of a Core Outcome Set in the Clinical Trials of Traditional Chinese Medicine for Stroke: A Study Protocol.

Front Med (Lausanne) 2022 3;9:753138. Epub 2022 Mar 3.

Evidence-Based Medicine Center, Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Tianjin, China.

Introduction: Stroke, an acute cerebrovascular disease, is mainly caused by the sudden rupture or occlusion of blood vessels, and is subdivided into ischemic stroke and hemorrhagic stroke. It has become the second leading cause of death worldwide. In Chinese clinical practice, traditional Chinese medicine (TCM)/Integrative Medicine has been widely used for the treatment of stroke. Numerous randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of TCM/Integrative Medicine for stroke have been conducted to improve the efficacy and safety outcomes. However, their conclusions should be treated with caution because of the methodological quality defects in the clinical research. Pervasive inconsistencies are present in the outcomes collected and reported across these studies, which may lead to the pooling of discrepant data and preclude meta-analysis. The issue could be addressed by developing a core outcome set (COS).

Aim: The aim of this study is to develop a COS in the clinical trials of TCM/Integrative Medicine in the treatment of stroke.

Method And Analysis: A steering group will be set up to organize and guide the development of the COS. The study contains three phases: (I) development of an initial outcome list covering all relevant outcomes, two steps: (i) systematic reviews of outcomes for clinical trials of TCM/ Integrative Medicine for stroke; (ii) semi-structured interviews with patients suffering from stroke; (II) conduction of three round of Delphi surveys with different stakeholder groups to prioritize important outcomes; (III) integration of outcomes into a core outcome set by a consensus meeting.

Ethics And Dissemination: This study has been granted by the Ethics Committee of Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TJUTCM-EC20210003). When the COS is completed, we will publish it in an appropriate journal to promote further widespread use.

Registration: This study has been registered at the Core Outcome Measures in Effectiveness Trials initiative, COMET database (Registration #1678).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmed.2022.753138DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8927076PMC
March 2022

Effect of pretreatments on production of xylooligosaccharides and monosaccharides from corncob by a two-step hydrolysis.

Carbohydr Polym 2022 Jun 5;285:119217. Epub 2022 Feb 5.

College of Forestry, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, China; Jiangsu Co-Innovation Center of Efficient Processing and Utilization of Forest Resources, College of Chemical Engineering, Nanjing Forestry University, Nanjing 210037, China; Key Laboratory of Forestry Genetics & Biotechnology (Nanjing Forestry University), Ministry of Education, Nanjing 210037, China. Electronic address:

Xylan extraction by alkali is usually a prerequisite for traditional xylooligosaccharide (XOS) production from corncob. In this study, to avoid xylan isolation before XOS production, corncob was delignified by hydrogen peroxide-acetic acid (HPAA), followed by a two-step enzymatic hydrolysis for XOS and monosaccharide production. High lignin removal (55.5%-82.6%) was observed upon pretreatment with 75%-100% HPAA and using 50-100 mM HSO as a catalyst. A high XOS yield of 27.8% was obtained from 75% HPAA-pretreated corncob with 75 mM HSO, and the xylose/XOS ratio was only 0.09, indicating that the purity of XOS was relatively high. The highest glucose yield (79.1%) was obtained from 100% HPAA-pretreated corncob with 50 mM HSO. Finally, 58.3 g of XOS, 186.9 g of glucose, and 56.4 g of xylose were obtained from 1 kg of corncob. This study provides a promising approach for XOS and monosaccharide production from corncob without xylan isolation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.carbpol.2022.119217DOI Listing
June 2022

Prevalence and Risk Factors of Functional Constipation According to the Rome Criteria in China: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

Front Med (Lausanne) 2022 16;9:815156. Epub 2022 Feb 16.

Evidence-Based Medicine Center, Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Tianjin, China.

Background: Functional constipation (FC) is a common bowel disorder that prevails worldwide. In China, although a heterogeneous prevalence of constipation is expected, it is currently not demonstrated. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the prevalence and related risk factors of FC in the Chinese population, according to the Rome criteria.

Methods: We searched the PubMed, the Embase, the Cochrane Library, the Web of Science, the China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI), the Wanfang data knowledge service platform, the VIP information resource integration service platform, and the Chinese Biomedical Literature Service System (SinoMed) databases from the inception of database to July 2021. Population-based cross-section studies that enrolled adults with FC, diagnosed by the Rome criteria, were deemed eligible. We summarized the overall prevalence and detected the subgroup effect per the Rome I, Rome II, Rome III, and Rome IV criteria. We used the generalized linear mixed model (GLMM) with a random-effect intercept to pool the prevalence and performed pairwise meta-analyses for prevalence comparisons by risk factors.

Results: We identified 3,213 records through our database search, and 39 studies from China, comprising 1,240,79 participants, met the eligibility criteria for our study. The pooled overall prevalence of FC using the Rome criteria was 8.5% in China. Heterogeneous prevalence was detected within the Rome criteria (Rome II: 10.6%, 95% CI: 7.2-15.4; Rome III: 6.5%, 95% CI: 3.4-12.0; Rome IV: 8.1%, 95% CI: 5.6-11.8). The prevalence increased between 1991 and 2020 (from 5.5% with 95% CI: 3.6-8.2 between 1991 and 2000 to 10.9% with 95% CI: 5.5-20.4 between 2011 and 2020). Higher prevalence was found in women [odds ratio (OR) = 1.53, 95% CI: 1.31-1.78] and the elderly (≥70 years vs. ≤ 29 years: OR = 3.38, 95% CI: 2.16-5.30) than in men and the younger population. A high-fiber diet was associated with lower prevalence (OR = 0.33, 95% CI: 0.15-0.75), whereas irregular bowel habit and inactivity were associated with higher prevalence (OR = 3.64, 95% CI: 2.64-5.03; OR = 1.97, 95% CI: 1.14-3.43). Unhealthy mental states, such as anxiety and depression, and poor sleep quality led to high prevalence (OR = 3.16, 95%C I: 1.96-5.11; OR = 2.74, 95% CI: 1.76-4.26; OR = 2.14, 95% CI: 1.69-2.72, respectively).

Conclusion: Various types of FC prevail in China based on the different Rome criteria, personal characteristics, and habits. The prevalence also increased over the past three decades. The FC should be included under the primary care setting with uniform diagnosis criteria in China.

Systematic Review Registration: http://www.crd.york.ac.uk/PROSPERO, CRD42021277172.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmed.2022.815156DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8889120PMC
February 2022

Associations Between a Polymorphism in the Rat 5-HT Receptor Gene Promoter Region (rs198585630) and Cognitive Alterations Induced by Microwave Exposure.

Front Public Health 2022 17;10:802386. Epub 2022 Feb 17.

Beijing Institute of Radiation Medicine, Beijing, China.

The nervous system is a sensitive target of electromagnetic radiation (EMR). Chronic microwave exposure can induce cognitive deficits, and 5-HT system is involved in this effect. Genetic polymorphisms lead to individual differences. In this study, we evaluated whether the single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs198585630 of 5-HT receptor is associated with cognitive alterations in rats after microwave exposure with a frequency of 2.856 GHz and an average power density of 30 mW/cm. Rats were exposed to microwaves for 6 min three times a week for up to 6 weeks. PC12 cells and 293T cells were exposed to microwaves for 5 min up to 3 times at 2 intervals of 5 min. Transcriptional activity of 5-HT receptor promoter containing rs198585630 C/T allele was determined . Electroencephalograms (EEGs), spatial learning and memory, and mRNA and protein expression of 5-HT receptor were evaluated . We demonstrated that transcriptional activity of 5-HT receptor promoter containing rs198585630 C allele was higher than that of 5-HT receptor promoter containing T allele. The transcriptional activity of 5-HT receptor promoter was stimulated by 30 mW/cm microwave exposure, and rs198585630 C allele was more sensitive to microwave exposure, as it showed stronger transcriptional activation. Rats carrying rs198585630 C allele exhibited increased mRNA and protein expression of 5-HT receptor and were more susceptible to 30 mW/cm microwave exposure, showing cognitive deficits and inhibition of brain electrical activity. These findings suggest SNP rs198585630 of the 5-HT receptor is an important target for further research exploring the mechanisms of hypersensitivity to microwave exposure.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpubh.2022.802386DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8891156PMC
April 2022

Evidence Mapping of 23 Systematic Reviews of Traditional Chinese Medicine Combined With Western Medicine Approaches for COVID-19.

Front Pharmacol 2021 7;12:807491. Epub 2022 Feb 7.

Evidence-Based Medicine Center, Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Tianjin, China.

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has already spread around the world. The modality of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) combined with Western medicine (WM) approaches is being used to treat COVID-19 patients in China. Several systematic reviews (SRs) are available highlighting the efficacy and safety of TCM combined with WM approaches in COVID-19 patients. However, their evidence quality is not completely validated. We aimed to assess the methodological quality and the risk of bias of the included SRs, assess the evidence quality of outcomes, and present their trends and gaps using the evidence mapping method. PubMed, Cochrane Library, Embase, CNKI, CBM, and Wanfang Data were searched from inception until March 2021 to identify SRs pertaining to the field of TCM combined with WM approaches for COVID-19. The methodological quality of the SRs was assessed using the Assessment of Multiple Systematic Reviews 2 (AMSTAR 2), the risk of bias of the included SRs was assessed with the Risk of Bias in Systematic Review (ROBIS) tool, and the evidence quality of outcomes was assessed using the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) system. In total, 23 SRs were found eligible. Twenty-one were rated of moderate confidence by AMSTAR 2, while 12 were rated at low risk using the ROBIS tool. In addition, most outcomes were graded as having moderate quality using the GRADE system. We found that the combined use of TCM and WM approaches could improve the CT recovery rate, effective rate, viral nucleic acid negative conversion rate, and the disappearance rate of fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Also, these approaches could decrease the conversion rate from mild to critical, white blood cell counts, and lymphocyte counts and shorten the time to viral assay conversion and the length of hospital stay. TCM combined with WM approaches had advantages in efficacy, laboratory, and clinical symptom outcomes of COVID-19, but the methodological deficiencies of SRs should be taken into consideration. Therefore, to better guide clinical practice in the future, the methodological quality of SRs should still be improved, and high-quality randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and observational studies should also be carried out.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fphar.2021.807491DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8860227PMC
February 2022

Counteracts The Deleterious Effect of Irradiation Treatment on Bone Mesenchymal Stem Cells by Regulating The miR-741-3p/CDK6 Pathway.

Cell J 2022 Jan;24(1):15-21

Department of Blood Transfusion, The Third Xiangya Hospital of Central South University, Changsha, China. Email:

Objective: The present work was aimed at uncovering the effect of () on irradiation-induced bone mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) injury and its regulatory mechanism, with a view to establish a scientific basis for its possible medical applications.

Materials And Methods: In this experimental study, after irradiation with different doses (0, 2, 4, 6 GY), the relative expression levels of , , and cyclin-dependent kinases 6 () were detected in the BMSCs, using the real time-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR). The overexpression effects of and CDK6 on the cell proliferation in irradiation-treated BMSCs were measured by the Cell Counting Kit-8 (CCK8) assay. And also, their effects on the cell cycle were evaluated by flow cytometry. RT-qPCR and immunoblotting were performed to detect the effects of and on the expression of and kinases 4 () at the gene and protein levels, respectively.

Results: Irradiation treatment elevated the expression of and , but reduced expression in the BMSCs with a dose-dependent effect. The proliferation of BMSCs was significantly inhibited in the irradiation treatment group, while the overexpression of and effectively attenuated this inhibition. Also, overexpression of and elevated the expression of in irradiation-treated BMSCs, but had no significant effect on the expression.

Conclusion: Our results demonstrated that up-regulated the expression of cyclin D1 via CDK6 signal pathway, thereby promoting cell cycle progression and proliferation of irradiation-treated BMSCs. This finding suggested CDK6 pathway exerted a protective role in the response to irradiation and will be a potential new target for future research on the mechanism involved in the resistance of BMSCs to radiation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.22074/cellj.2022.7697DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8876257PMC
January 2022

Significant loophole-free test of Kochen-Specker contextuality using two species of atomic ions.

Sci Adv 2022 Feb 9;8(6):eabk1660. Epub 2022 Feb 9.

State Key Laboratory of Low Dimensional Quantum Physics, Department of Physics, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, People's Republic of China.

Quantum measurements cannot be thought of as revealing preexisting results, even when they do not disturb any other measurement in the same trial. This feature is called contextuality and is crucial for the quantum advantage in computing. Here, we report the observation of quantum contextuality simultaneously free of the detection, sharpness, and compatibility loopholes. The detection and sharpness loopholes are closed by adopting a hybrid two-ion system and highly efficient fluorescence measurements offering a detection efficiency of 100% and a measurement repeatability of >98%. The compatibility loophole is closed by targeting correlations between observables for two different ions in a Paul trap, a Yb ion and a Ba ion, chosen so measurements on each ion use different operation laser wavelengths, fluorescence wavelengths, and detectors. The experimental results show a violation of the bound for the most adversarial noncontextual models and open a way to certify quantum systems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.abk1660DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8827658PMC
February 2022
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