Publications by authors named "Keke Zhang"

136 Publications

Quantitative Phosphoproteomic Comparison of Lens Proteins in Highly Myopic Cataract and Age-Related Cataract.

Biomed Res Int 2021 10;2021:6668845. Epub 2021 May 10.

Eye Institute and Department of Ophthalmology, Eye & ENT Hospital of Fudan University, Shanghai 200031, China.

Purpose: To investigate and compare the lens phosphoproteomes in patients with highly myopic cataract (HMC) or age-related cataract (ARC).

Methods: In this study, we undertook a comparative phosphoproteome analysis of the lenses from patients with HMC or ARC. Intact lenses from ARC and HMC patients were separated into the cortex and nucleus. After protein digestion, the phosphopeptides were quantitatively analyzed with TiO enrichment and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. The potential functions of different phosphopeptides were assessed by Gene Ontology (GO) enrichment analysis and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathway enrichment analysis.

Results: In total, 522 phosphorylation sites in 164 phosphoproteins were identified. The number of phosphorylation sites was significantly higher in the cortex than in the nucleus, in both ARC and HMC lenses. The differentially phosphorylated peptides in the lens cortex and nucleus in HMC eyes were significantly involved in the glutathione metabolism pathway. The KEGG pathway enrichment analysis indicated that the differences in phosphosignaling mediators between the ARC and HMC lenses were associated with glycolysis and the level of phosphorylated phosphoglycerate kinase 1 was lower in HMC lenses than in ARC lenses.

Conclusions: We provide an overview of the differential phosphoproteomes of HMC and ARC lenses that can be used to clarify the molecular mechanisms underlying their different phenotypes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2021/6668845DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8130905PMC
May 2021

Conjunctival Microbiota in Patients With Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus and Influences of Perioperative Use of Topical Levofloxacin in Ocular Surgery.

Front Med (Lausanne) 2021 6;8:605639. Epub 2021 Apr 6.

Department of Ophthalmology and Eye Institute, Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Hospital of Fudan University, Shanghai, China.

Patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) are prone to ocular surface infections. We therefore characterized the conjunctival microbiome of T2DM patients and the influence of topical levofloxacin to investigate whether a dysbiosis is associated with this phenomenon. Conjunctival microbiome of 79 T2DM patients and 113 non-diabetic controls was profiled using the 16S rDNA sequencing approach. Furthermore, 21 T2DM and 14 non-diabetic patients who underwent cataract surgeries were followed up perioperatively and the influence of pre- and post-operative levofloxacin on the conjunctival microbiome was further investigated prospectively and compared longitudinally. The α-diversity of the conjunctival microbiota was significantly higher in T2DM patients than in controls ( < 0.05). Significant differences in both composition and function of the conjunctival microbiome were identified on the ocular surface of T2DM patients as compared to non-diabetic controls. Particularly, phylum and , genus , and were enriched, while genus was reduced on the T2DM ocular surface. Microbial genes functioning of bacterial chemotaxis was elevated in the conjunctival microbiome of T2DM patients. Furthermore, compared to the initial status, several genera including were more abundant in the conjunctival microbiome of T2DM patients after 3-days use of preoperative levofloxacin topically, while no genus was more abundant in the non-diabetic follow-up group. No difference was observed between initial status and 7 days after ceasing all postoperative medications in both diabetic and non-diabetic follow-up groups. The conjunctival microbiome of T2DM patients was more complex and may respond differently to topical antibiotics.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmed.2021.605639DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8055849PMC
April 2021

Titanium Nanotube Modified With Silver Cross-Linked Basic Fibroblast Growth Factor Improves Osteoblastic Activities of Dental Pulp Stem Cells and Antibacterial Effect.

Front Cell Dev Biol 2021 1;9:654654. Epub 2021 Apr 1.

School and Hospital of Stomatology, Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, China.

Titanium modifications with different silver loading methods demonstrate excellent antibacterial properties. Yet pure silver nanoparticles with limited bioactive properties may delay regeneration of bone surrounding the dental implant. Therefore, loading silver with bioactive drugs on titanium surfaces seems to be a very promising strategy. Herein, we designed a silver (Ag) step-by-step cross-linking with the basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) by polydopamine (PDA) and heparin on titanium nanotube (TNT) as its cargo (TNT/PDA/Ag/bFGF) to improve the implant surface. Our results showed that TNT/PDA/Ag/bFGF significantly enhanced the osteogenic differentiation of dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs). It also showed an excellent effect in bacterial inhibition and a reduction of pro-inflammatory factors through inhibition of M1 macrophage activity. These results showed that bFGF cross-linked silver coating on TNTs presented good osteogenic differentiation and early anti-infiammatory and antibacterial properties. Together, this novel design on titanium provides a promising therapeutic for dental implants.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fcell.2021.654654DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8047219PMC
April 2021

The Inhibitory Effects of Ficin on Biofilm Formation.

Biomed Res Int 2021 23;2021:6692328. Epub 2021 Mar 23.

School and Hospital of Stomatology, Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou 325027, China.

To investigate the effects of ficin on biofilm formation of conditionally cariogenic (). Biomass and metabolic activity of biofilm were assessed using crystal violet assay, colony-forming unit (CFU) counting, and MTT assay. Extracellular polysaccharide (EPS) synthesis was displayed by SEM imaging, bacteria/EPS staining, and anthrone method while acid production was revealed by lactic acid assay. Growth curve and live/dead bacterial staining were conducted to monitor bacterial growth state in both planktonic and biofilm form. Total protein and extracellular proteins of biofilm were analyzed by protein/bacterial staining and sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), severally. qRT-PCR was conducted to detect acid production, acid tolerance, and biofilm formation associated genes. Crystal violet assay, CFU counting, and MTT assay showed that the suppression effect of ficin on biofilm formation was concentration dependent. 4 mg/mL ficin had significant inhibitory effect on biofilm formation including biomass, metabolic activity, EPS synthesis, and lactic acid production ( < 0.05). The growth curves from 0 mg/mL to 4 mg/mL ficin were aligned with each other. There was no significant difference among different ficin groups in terms of live/dead bacterial staining result ( > 0.05). Protein/bacterial staining outcome indicated that ficin inhibit both total protein and biofilm formation during the biofilm development. There were more relatively small molecular weight protein bands in extracellular proteins of 4 mg/mL ficin group when compared with the control. Generally, ficin could inhibit biofilm formation and reduce cariogenic virulence of effectively in vitro; thus, it could be a potential anticaries agent.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2021/6692328DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8009705PMC
May 2021

Aberrant TGF-β1 signaling activation by MAF underlies pathological lens growth in high myopia.

Nat Commun 2021 04 8;12(1):2102. Epub 2021 Apr 8.

Eye Institute, Eye & ENT Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.

High myopia is a leading cause of blindness worldwide. Myopia progression may lead to pathological changes of lens and affect the outcome of lens surgery, but the underlying mechanism remains unclear. Here, we find an increased lens size in highly myopic eyes associated with up-regulation of β/γ-crystallin expressions. Similar findings are replicated in two independent mouse models of high myopia. Mechanistic studies show that the transcription factor MAF plays an essential role in up-regulating β/γ-crystallins in high myopia, by direct activation of the crystallin gene promoters and by activation of TGF-β1-Smad signaling. Our results establish lens morphological and molecular changes as a characteristic feature of high myopia, and point to the dysregulation of the MAF-TGF-β1-crystallin axis as an underlying mechanism, providing an insight for therapeutic interventions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-22041-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8032689PMC
April 2021

Molecular mechanisms of zooplanktonic toxicity in the okadaic acid-producing dinoflagellate Prorocentrum lima.

Environ Pollut 2021 Jun 12;279:116942. Epub 2021 Mar 12.

Toxicology Centre, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, Canada; Department of Veterinary Biomedical Sciences, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, Canada; Department of Environmental Sciences, Baylor University, Waco, TX, USA; State Key Laboratory of Pollution Control and Resource Reuse, School of the Environment, Nanjing University, Nanjing, People's Republic of China.

Prorocentrum lima is a dinoflagellate that forms hazardous blooms and produces okadaic acid (OA), leading to adverse environmental consequences associated with the declines of zooplankton populations. However, little is known about the toxic effects and molecular mechanisms of P. lima or OA on zooplankton. Here, their toxic effects were investigated using the brine shrimp Artemia salina. Acute exposure of A. salina to P. lima resulted in lethality at concentrations 100-fold lower than densities observed during blooms. The first comprehensive results from global transcriptomic and metabolomic analyses in A. salina showed up-regulated mRNA expression of antioxidant enzymes and reduced non-enzyme antioxidants, indicating general detoxification responses to oxidative stress after exposure to P. lima. The significantly up-regulated mRNA expression of proteasome, spliceosome, and ribosome, as well as the increased fatty acid oxidation and oxidative phosphorylation suggested the proteolysis of damaged proteins and induction of energy expenditure. Exposure to OA increased catabolism of chitin, which may further disrupt the molting and reproduction activities of A. salina. Our data shed new insights on the molecular responses and toxicity mechanisms of A. salina to P. lima or OA. The simple zooplankton model integrated with omic methods provides a sensitive assessment approach for studying hazardous algae.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2021.116942DOI Listing
June 2021

Sediment resuspension drives protist metacommunity structure and assembly in grass carp (Ctenopharyngodonidella) aquaculture ponds.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Apr 9;764:142840. Epub 2020 Oct 9.

Environmental Microbiomics Research Center, School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Zhuhai), Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510006, China. Electronic address:

Protists in aquaculture ponds are key components associated with primary productivity, nutrient cycling, and fish healthy. However, the protist metacommunity diversity, as well as the ecological and environmental factors that structure protist metacommunity in aquaculture ponds remain poorly understood. This study examined protist metacommunities in water and sediment of larval, small juvenile and large juvenile grass carp ponds. The results indicated sediment resuspension became stronger with the increased fish size, which led to high levels of total suspended solids and nitrogen but low levels of phosphate, chlorophyll a and transparency in water. Moreover, sediment resuspension subsequently increased the alpha diversity indexes (i.e., OTU number, Shannon index and Simpson index) of protist communities in water and sediment. Meanwhile, sediment resuspension increased the relative abundance of heterotrophic Ciliophora and Cercozoa, but decreased the relative abundance of autotrophic Chlorophyta, Stramenopiles X, and Ochrophyta. Besides, some mixotrophic and heterotrophic protists showed competitive advantages in the turbidity water, which led to the increase of negative interactions in the protist co-occurrence networks. Based on the null model, sediment resuspension strengthened homogeneous selection (deterministic process) and weakened dispersal limitation (stochastic process) processes of protist community assembly. Indeed, protist community dissimilarity within each local community and each habitat (water or sediment) both decreased while the community dissimilarity between habitats increased with the increase of fish size. Therefore, sediment resuspension did not enhance the dispersal path between water and sediment, but decreased the dispersal limitation within sediment and water coupled with the strengthening of environmental selection. These results indicated that grass carp could restructure the protist metacommunity in aquaculture ponds through bottom up way of sediment resuspension. This study advances our understanding of the relationship between fish and protist metacommunity assembly in aquaculture systems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.142840DOI Listing
April 2021

hPER3 promotes adipogenesis via hHSP90AA1-mediated inhibition of Notch1 pathway.

Cell Death Dis 2021 Mar 19;12(4):301. Epub 2021 Mar 19.

Department of Endocrinology, Third Xiangya Hospital, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, 410013, China.

The period circadian regulator 3 (PER3) has been reported to play a negative role in human immortalized bone marrow-derived Scp-1 cells (iBMSCs) and patient adipose-derived stromal cells (PASCs) or a negative/positive role in mice adipogenesis. However, human PER3 (hPER3) was identified as a positive regulator of human adipose tissue-derived stromal cells (hADSCs) adipogenesis in this study. Silencing or overexpression of hPER3 in hADSCs inhibited and promoted adipogenesis in vitro. In vivo, the overexpression of hPER3 increased high-fat diet-induced inguinal white adipose tissue (iWAT) and epididymal white adipose tissue (eWAT) forms, increasing systemic glucose intolerance and insulin resistance. Molecularly, hPER3 does not interact with hPPARγ, but represses Notch1 signaling pathway to enhance adipogenesis by interacting with hHSP90AA1, which is able to combine with the promoter of hNotch1 and inactivate its expression. Thus, our study revealed hPER3 as a critical positive regulator of hADSCs adipogenesis, which was different from the other types of cells, providing a critical role of it in treating obesity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41419-021-03584-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7979882PMC
March 2021

Microstructure and shear properties of ultrasonic-assisted Sn2.5Ag0.7Cu0.1RExNi/Cu solder joints under thermal cycling.

Sci Rep 2021 Mar 18;11(1):6297. Epub 2021 Mar 18.

School of Materials Science and Engineering, Henan University of Science and Technology, Luoyang, 471023, China.

Through ultrasonic wave assisted Sn2.5Ag0.7Cu0.1RExNi/Cu (x = 0, 0.05, 0.1) soldering test and - 40 to 125 °C thermal shock test, the microstructure and shear properties of Sn2.5Ag0.7Cu0.1RExNi/Cu solder joints under thermal cycling were studied by the SEM, EDS and XRD. The results show that the Sn2.5Ag0.7Cu0.1RExNi/Cu solder joints with high quality and high reliability can be obtained by ultrasonic assistance. When the ultrasonic vibration power is 88 W, the ultrasonic-assisted Sn2.5Ag0.7Cu0.1RE0.05Ni/Cu solder joints exhibits the optimized performance. During the thermal cycling process, the shear strength of ultrasonic-assisted Sn2.5Ag0.7Cu0.1RExNi/Cu solder joints had a linear relationship with the thickness of interfacial intermetallic compound (IMC). Under the thermal cycling, the interfacial IMC layer of ultrasonic-assisted Sn2.5Ag0.7Cu0.1RExNi/Cu solder joints consisted of (Cu,Ni)Sn and CuSn. The thickness of interfacial IMC of ultrasonic-assisted Sn2.5Ag0.7Cu0.1RExNi/Cu solder joints was linearly related to the square root of equivalent time. The growth of interfacial IMC of ultrasonic-assisted Sn2.5Ag0.7Cu0.1RExNi/Cu solder joints had an incubation period, and the growth of IMC was slow within 300 cycles. And after 300 cycles, the IMC grew rapidly, the granular IMC began to merge, and the thickness and roughness of IMC increased obviously, which led to a sharp decrease in the shear strength of the solder joints. The 0.05 wt% Ni could inhibit the excessive growth of IMC, improve the shear strength of solder joints and improve the reliability of solder joints. The fracture mechanism of ultrasonic-assisted Sn2.5Ag0.7Cu0.1RExNi/Cu solder joints changed from the ductile-brittle mixed fracture in the solder/IMC transition zone to the brittle fracture in the interfacial IMC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-85685-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7973770PMC
March 2021

Preliminary Study on Predicting Pathological Staging and Immunohistochemical Markers of Rectal Cancer Based on ADC Histogram Analysis.

Acad Radiol 2021 Mar 3. Epub 2021 Mar 3.

Department of Radiology, First Hospital of Lanzhou University, Lanzhou, China; Gansu Intelligent Imaging Medical Engineering Research Center, Lanzhou, China; Accurate Imaging Collaborative Innovation Gansu International Science and Technology Cooperation Base, Lanzhou, China. Electronic address:

Objective: To analyze the correlation between histogram parameters of ADC and pathological staging of rectal cancer and CD31, CD2-40, S-100, and to explore its predictive value.

Materials And Methods: MRI findings of 60 patients with surgically and pathologically proved rectal cancer were analyzed retrospectively. Patients were divided into pT1-2, pT3-4, pN0, pN1-2, G1-2 and G3 groups according to TNM staging of UICC tumors (2019) and WHO classification of digestive system tumors (2019). Cases were divided into CD31 (+) and CD31 (-), CD2-40 (+) and CD4-20 (-), S-100 (+) and S-100 (-) groups according to the expression of immunohistochemical markers. The ROI was delineated layer by layer on the ADC images by Firevoxel software, and the histogram parameters were extracted. The histogram parameters (ADC mean, ADC minimum, ADC maximum, ADC mode, ADC quartile), skewness, kurtosis and entropy were compared between each group. The bivariate logistic regression model was used to predict the tumor staging and immunohistochemical results.

Results: 1. ADC10th, ADC mean and Entropy were higher than pT3-4, ADC mean was higher than pT1-2, Entropy was lower than pT1-2, ADC10th, ADC25th, ADC50th, ADC mean and ADC mode were lower than pT3-40 (-) in CD2-40 (+) group, and the difference was statistically significant (p < 0.05); 2. The lower area of the curve (AUC) of rectal cancer pT, pN and CD2-40 (+) is 0.952 (0.892-1.000), 0.882 (0.791-0.972), 0.913 (0.840-0.985); 3. In the logistic regression model, higher ADC, Ropy and higher pN stages are independent predictors of tumor pT stages (OR = 1.156, 1.144,111.528); p = 0.045, 0.048, 0.002); higher Ropy and lower pT stages are independent predictors of tumor pN stages in the model (OR = 73.939, 0.024; p = 0.019, 0.001); higher ADC and lower differentiation are independent predictors of tumor CD2-40 stages in the model (ADC = 1.17, 0.048, 0.011); and higher Ropy and lower pT stages are independent predictors of tumor CD2-40 stages in the model (ADC = 1.096, 0.094, 0.044).

Conclusion: Histogram analysis based on ADC images has potential value in predicting the pathologic stage and immunohistochemical markers of rectal cancer, and logistic regression model has better diagnostic efficacy than single parameter.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.acra.2021.02.004DOI Listing
March 2021

Structural insights into the substrate-binding cleft of AlyF reveal the first long-chain alginate-binding mode.

Acta Crystallogr D Struct Biol 2021 Mar 17;77(Pt 3):336-346. Epub 2021 Feb 17.

MOE Key Laboratory of Marine Genetics and Breeding, College of Marine Life Sciences, Ocean University of China, Qingdao 266003, People's Republic of China.

The products of alginate degradation, alginate oligosaccharides (AOS), have potential applications in many areas, including functional foods and marine drugs. Enzyme-based approaches using alginate lyases have advantages in the preparation of well defined AOS and have attracted much attention in recent years. However, a lack of structural insight into the whole substrate-binding cleft for most known alginate lyases severely hampers their application in the industrial generation of well defined AOS. To solve this issue, AlyF was co-crystallized with the long alginate oligosaccharide G6 (L-hexaguluronic acid hexasodium salt), which is the longest bound substrate in all solved alginate lyase complex structures. AlyF formed interactions with G6 from subsites -3 to +3 without additional substrate-binding site interactions, suggesting that the substrate-binding cleft of AlyF was fully occupied by six sugars, which was further confirmed by isothermal titration calorimetry and differential scanning calorimetry analyses. More importantly, a combination of structural comparisons and mutagenetic analyses determined that three key loops (loop 1, Lys215-Glu236; loop 2, Gln402-Ile416; loop 3, Arg334-Gly348) mainly function in binding long substrates (degree of polymerization of >4). The potential flexibility of loop 1 and loop 2 might enable the substrate to continue to enter the cleft after binding to subsites +1 to +3; loop 3 stabilizes and orients the substrate at subsites -2 and -3. Taken together, these results provide the first possible alginate lyase-substrate binding profile for long-chain alginates, facilitating the rational design of new enzymes for industrial purposes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1107/S205979832100005XDOI Listing
March 2021

Toxic and protective mechanisms of cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. in response to titanium dioxide nanoparticles.

Environ Pollut 2021 Apr 16;274:116508. Epub 2021 Jan 16.

Environmental Microbiomics Research Center, School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Zhuhai), Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, 510006, Guangdong, China; College of Agronomy, Hunan Agricultural University, Changsha, 410128, Hunan, China. Electronic address:

An increasing production and use of titanium dioxide nanoparticles (TiO NPs) pose a huge threat to phytoplankton since they are largely released into aquatic environments, which represent a sink for TiO NPs. However, toxicity and protective mechanisms of cyanobacteria in response to TiO NPs remain elusive. Here we investigated toxic effects of two sizes of TiO NPs (50 and 10 nm) and one bulk TiO (200 nm) on a cyanobacterium, Synechocystis sp. and their possible protective mechanisms. We found that 10 nm TiO NPs caused significant growth and photosynthesis inhibition in Synechocystis sp. cells, largely reflected in decreased growth rate (38%), operational PSII quantum yields (40%), phycocyanin (51%) and allophycocyanin (63%), and increased reactive oxygen species content (245%), superoxide dismutase activity (46%). Also, transcriptomic analysis of Synechocystis sp. exposure to 10 nm TiO NPs showed the up-regulation of D1 and D2 protein genes (psbA and psbD), ferredoxin gene (petF) and F-type ATPase genes (e.g., atpB), and the down-regulation of psbM and psb28-2 in PS II. We further proposed a conceptual model to explore possible toxic and protective mechanisms for Synechocystis sp. under TiO nanoparticle exposure. This study provides mechanistic insights into our understanding of Synechocystis sp. responses to TiO NPs. This is essential for more accurate environmental risk assessment approaches of nanoparticles in aquatic ecosystems by governmental environmental agencies worldwide.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2021.116508DOI Listing
April 2021

Can Innovation Agglomeration Reduce Carbon Emissions? Evidence from China.

Int J Environ Res Public Health 2021 01 6;18(2). Epub 2021 Jan 6.

Institute of Central China Development, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China.

Innovation agglomeration plays a decisive role in improving the input-output scale and marginal output efficiency of factors. This paper takes carbon emissions as the unexpected output and energy consumption as the input factor into the traditional output density model. The dynamic spatial panel Durbin model is used to analyze the mechanism for innovation agglomeration and energy intensity to affect carbon emissions from 2004 to 2017 in thirty Chinese provinces. Then, we test the possible mediating effect of energy intensity between innovation agglomeration and carbon emissions. The major findings are as follows. (1) The carbon emission intensity has time-dependence and positive spatial spillover effect. That is, there is a close correlation between current and early carbon emissions, and there is also a high-degree correlation between regional and surrounding areas' carbon emissions. (2) Carbon emissions keep a classical inverted U-shaped relation with innovation agglomeration, as well as with energy intensity. However, the impact of innovation agglomeration on carbon emissions in inland regions of China does not appear on the right side of the inverted U-shaped curve, while carbon emissions are subject to a positive nonlinear promoting effect from energy intensity. (3) When the logarithm of innovation agglomeration is more than 3.0309, it first shows the inhibition effect on energy intensity. With the logarithm of innovation agglomeration exceeding 5.0100, it will show the dual effect of emission reduction and energy conservation. (4) Energy intensity could work as the intermediary variable of innovation agglomeration's influence on carbon emissions. Through its various positive externalities, innovation agglomeration can produce a direct impact on carbon emissions, and through energy intensity, it can also affect carbon emissions indirectly.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020382DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7825457PMC
January 2021

COVID-19, Urbanization Pattern and Economic Recovery: An Analysis of Hubei, China.

Int J Environ Res Public Health 2020 12 21;17(24). Epub 2020 Dec 21.

School of Foreign Languages, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430074, China.

In the context of the rapid development of urbanization and increasing population mobility in China, the outbreak of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on China's economy and society. This article uses China UnionPay transaction data and takes Hubei, the worst-hit region by COVID-19 in China, as an example, to conduct empirical analysis using the generalized method of moments (GMM) of the impact of current urbanization patterns on the spread of the epidemic and economic recovery from the perspectives of time, industry, and regional differences. The study found that during the different stages of COVID-19, including discovery, outbreak, and subsidence, the overall impact of urbanization on the economy in Hubei Province was first positive, then became negative, and finally gradually increased. This process had significant industrial and urban heterogeneity, which was mainly manifested in losses in tourism and catering industries that were significantly greater than those in the audio-visual entertainment and digital office industries. Similarly, the recovery speed of large cities was lower than that of small and medium-sized cities. The main reason for these differences is that the one-sided problem of urbanization is more obvious in areas with higher urbanization rates. COVID-19 has drawn attention to the development of urbanization in the future, that is, the development path of one-sided economic resource agglomeration and scale expansion should be abandoned, with greater attention paid to the improvement of service functions and the development of amenities. This transformation is necessary to enhance urban economic resilience and reduce public health risks.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17249577DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7767432PMC
December 2020

Cilioretinal Arteries in Highly Myopic Eyes: A Photographic Classification System and Its Association With Myopic Macular Degeneration.

Front Med (Lausanne) 2020 2;7:595544. Epub 2020 Dec 2.

Eye Institute and Department of Ophthalmology, Eye and ENT Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.

To develop a photographic classification for cilioretinal arteries and to investigate its association with myopic macular degeneration (MMD). One thousand six hundred ninety-two highly myopic eyes of 1,692 patients were included. The presence of a cilioretinal artery was determined by fundus photographs, and a photographic classification was proposed. MMD was classified according to the International META-PM Classification. Associations of the cilioretinal artery and its classifications with MMD and visual acuity were analyzed. Of the eyes tested, 245 (14.5%) had a cilioretinal artery. The cilioretinal arteries were classified into four categories (temporal "cake-fork," 35.92%; temporal "ribbon," 53.47%; "multiple," 6.53%; "nasal," 4.08%) and 3 distributions based on whether its visible branches reached the central foveal area. Eyes with cilioretinal arteries had significantly less MMD of grade ≥3 and better visual acuity than those without ( < 0.01). Multiple linear regression analysis showed that younger age, male sex, shorter axial length, and the presence of a cilioretinal artery were associated with better visual acuity in highly myopic eyes (all < 0.05). The "nasal" category presented more MMD with grade ≥3 and worse visual acuity than the other categories ( < 0.05), whereas the "multiple" category contained no eyes with MMD grade ≥3. The cilioretinal arteries reaching the central foveal area showed less MMD of grade ≥3 and better visual acuity than those not ( < 0.05). We propose a photographic classification for cilioretinal arteries that has good clinical relevance to visual functions. The cilioretinal artery may potentially afford protection against MMD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmed.2020.595544DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7738318PMC
December 2020

Crucial roles of graphene oxide in preparing alginate/nanofibrillated cellulose double network composites hydrogels.

Chemosphere 2021 Jan 3;263:128240. Epub 2020 Sep 3.

School of Materials Science and Engineering, Henan University of Science and Technology, Luoyang, 471023, China.

In this study, a novel strategy to prepare sodium alginate (SA)/nano fibrillated cellulose (NFC) double network (DN) hydrogel beads with the aid of graphene oxide (GO) was developed. In comparison with the multi-step freezing-thawing method, this study employs a facile one-step freeze drying method with the presence of GO sheets. The crucial roles of GO were highlighted as an efficient nucleating agent of NFC and a reinforcer for the hydrogel. The adsorption property of the DN hydrogel towards crystal violet (CV) was also studied. Results indicated that the introduction of GO could greatly facilitate the formation of double networks. Furthermore, the as-prepared DN hydrogel beads exhibited an efficacious adsorption property towards CV. The maximum adsorption capacity of the hydrogels for CV was observed as 665 mg g. Therefore, our approach here represents a facile method for the preparation of crystalline polymer based DN hydrogels to replace the awkward freezing-thawing process, giving inspiration for DN hydrogels design and preparation. Moreover, due to its efficient adsorption capacity, the hydrogels hold great promise for the water pollution control materials.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2020.128240DOI Listing
January 2021

p21-activated kinase 4 promotes the progression of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma by targeting LASP1.

Mol Carcinog 2020 Dec 1. Epub 2020 Dec 1.

Department of Pathophysiology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou, Henan, China.

Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) is one of the most common malignant tumors of the digestive tract in humans. Several studies have indicated that PAK4 is associated with the risk of ESCC and may be a potential druggable kinase for ESCC treatment. However, the underlying mechanism remains largely unknown. The aim of our study is to identify the functional role of PAK4 in ESCC. To determine the expression of PAK4 in ESCC, Western blot analysis and immunohistochemistry were performed, and the results showed that PAK4 is significantly upregulated in ESCC tissues and cell lines compared with normal controls and normal esophageal epithelial cell line. To further investigate the role of PAK4 in ESCC, cell viability assays, anchorage-independent cell growth assays, wound healing assays, cellular invasion assays, in vivo xenograft mouse models, and metastasis assays were conducted, and the results showed that PAK4 can significantly facilitate ESCC proliferation and metastasis in vitro and in vivo. To determine the potential target of PAK4 in ESCC progression, a pull-down assay was performed, and the results showed that LASP1 may be a potential target of PAK4. An immunoprecipitation assay and confocal microscopy analysis confirmed that PAK4 can bind to and colocalize with LASP1 in vitro and in cells. Notably, rescue experiments further illustrated the mechanistic network of PAK4/LASP1. Our research reveals the oncogenic roles of PAK4 in ESCC and preliminarily elucidates the mechanistic network of PAK4/LASP1 in ESCC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mc.23269DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7756368PMC
December 2020

Microbially-driven sulfur cycling microbial communities in different mangrove sediments.

Chemosphere 2021 Jun 13;273:128597. Epub 2020 Oct 13.

Environmental Microbiomics Research Center, School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Zhuhai), Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, 510006, China. Electronic address:

Microbially-driven sulfur cycling is a vital biogeochemical process in the sulfur-rich mangrove ecosystem. It is critical to evaluate the potential impact of sulfur transformation in mangrove ecosystems. To reveal the diversity, composition, and structure of sulfur-oxidizing bacteria (SOB) and sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) and underlying mechanisms, we analyzed the physicochemical properties and sediment microbial communities from an introduced mangrove species (Sonneratia apetala), a native mangrove species (Kandelia obovata) and the mudflat in Hanjiang River Estuary in Guangdong (23.27°N, 116.52°E), China. The results indicated that SOB was dominated by autotrophic Thiohalophilus and chemoautotrophy Chromatium in S. apetala and K. obovata, respectively, while Desulfatibacillum was the dominant genus of SRB in K. obovata sediments. Also, the redundancy analysis indicated that temperature, redox potential (ORP), and SO were the significant factors influencing the sulfur cycling microbial communities with elemental sulfur (ES) as the key factor driver for SOB and total carbon (TC) for SRB in mangrove sediments. Additionally, the morphological transformation of ES, acid volatile sulfide (AVS) and SO explained the variation of sulfur cycling microbial communities under sulfur-rich conditions, and we found mangrove species-specific dominant Thiohalobacter, Chromatium and Desulfatibacillum, which could well use ES and SO, thus promoting the sulfur cycling in mangrove sediments. Meanwhile, the change of nutrient substances (TN, TC) explained why SOB were more susceptible to environmental changes than SRB. Sulfate reducing bacteria produces sulfide in anoxic sediments at depth that then migrate upward, toward fewer reducing conditions, where it's oxidized by sulfur oxidizing bacteria. This study indicates the high ability of SOB and SRB in ES, SOS and S generation and transformation in sulfur-rich mangrove ecosystems, and provides novel insights into sulfur cycling in other wetland ecosystems from a microbial perspective.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2020.128597DOI Listing
June 2021

Fish growth enhances microbial sulfur cycling in aquaculture pond sediments.

Microb Biotechnol 2020 09 6;13(5):1597-1610. Epub 2020 Jul 6.

Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Zhuhai), School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Environmental Microbiomics Research Center, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, Guangdong, 510006, China.

Microbial sulfate reduction and sulfur oxidation are vital processes to enhance organic matter degradation in sediments. However, the diversity and composition of sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) and sulfur-oxidizing bacteria (SOB) and their environmental driving factors are still poorly understood in aquaculture ponds, which received mounting of organic matter. In this study, bacterial communities, SRB and SOB from sediments of aquaculture ponds with different sizes of grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idellus) were analysed using high-throughput sequencing and quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR). The results indicated that microbial communities in aquaculture pond sediments of large juvenile fish showed the highest richness and abundance of SRB and SOB, potentially further enhancing microbial sulfur cycling. Specifically, SRB were dominated by Desulfobulbus and Desulfovibrio, whereas SOB were dominated by Dechloromonas and Leptothrix. Although large juvenile fish ponds had relatively lower concentrations of sulfur compounds (i.e. total sulfur, acid-volatile sulfide and elemental sulfur) than those of larval fish ponds, more abundant SRB and SOB were found in the large juvenile fish ponds. Further redundancy analysis (RDA) and linear regression indicated that sulfur compounds and sediment suspension are the major environmental factors shaping the abundance and community structure of SRB and SOB in aquaculture pond sediments. Findings of this study expand our current understanding of microbial driving sulfur cycling in aquaculture ecosystems and also provide novel insights for ecological and green aquaculture managements.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1751-7915.13622DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7415356PMC
September 2020

An Evaluation of Norspermidine on Anti-fungal Effect on Mature Biofilms and Angiogenesis Potential of Dental Pulp Stem Cells.

Front Bioeng Biotechnol 2020 12;8:948. Epub 2020 Aug 12.

School & Hospital of Stomatology, Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, China.

Norspermidine (Nspd) is a kind of polyamine molecule, which is common in eukaryotes and prokaryotes. It has been reported as a potential anti-biofilms agent of bacteria, but its anti-fungal effect remains unclear. () is a common opportunistic pathogen in oral cavity of human beings. biofilm is often seen in dental caries. In this work, we aimed to study the effect of Nspd on mature biofilms and to investigate how Nspd would influence human dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs). Our biofilm assays indicated that 111.7 and 55.9 mM Nspd dispersed 48 h mature fungal biofilms and showed significant fungicidal effect. 27.9 and 14.0 mM Nspd showed moderate fungicidal effect. Live/dead staining echoed the fungicidal effect. 111.7-14.0 mM Nspd showed a dose- inhibitory effect on mature fungal biofilm, where 14.0 mM Nspd reduced the metabolic activity by half compared with blank control. Moreover, we demonstrated that 111.7-27.9 mM Nspd restrained the production of hyphae form of via SEM. Low dose Nspd (27.9 and 14.0 mM) could significantly reduce virulence related gene expression biofilms. MTT assay displayed a dose effect relation between 2.5-0.08 mM Nspd and DPSCs viability, where 0.63 mM Nspd reduced the viable level of DPSCs to 75% compared with blank control. Live/dead staining of DPSCs did not show distinctive difference between 0.63 mM Nspd and blank control. Vascular differentiation assay showed capillary-like structure of inducted DPSCs culture with and without 0.63 mM Nspd suggesting that it did not significantly affect angiogenic differentiation of DPSCs. Nspd can penetrate remaining dentin at low level, which is confirmed by an caries model. In conclusion, our study indicated high dosage Nspd (111.7 and 55.9 mM) could effectively disrupt and kill mature fungal biofilms. Low dosage (27.9 and 14.0 mM) showed mild anti-fungal effect on mature biofilms. Human DPSCs were tolerate to 0.08-0.63 mM Nspd, where viability was over 75%. 0.63 mM Nspd did not affect the proliferation and angiogenetic differentiation of DPSCs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fbioe.2020.00948DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7434867PMC
August 2020

Prevalence and predictors of myopic macular degeneration among Asian adults: pooled analysis from the Asian Eye Epidemiology Consortium.

Br J Ophthalmol 2020 Sep 2. Epub 2020 Sep 2.

Singapore Eye Research Institute, Singapore National Eye Centre, Singapore.

Aims: To determine the prevalence and predictors of myopic macular degeneration (MMD) in a consortium of Asian studies.

Methods: Individual-level data from 19 885 participants from four population-based studies, and 1379 highly myopic participants (defined as axial length (AL) >26.0 mm) from three clinic-based/school-based studies of the Asian Eye Epidemiology Consortium were pooled. MMD was graded from fundus photographs following the meta-analysis for pathologic myopia classification and defined as the presence of diffuse choroidal atrophy, patchy chorioretinal atrophy, macular atrophy, with or without 'plus' lesion (lacquer crack, choroidal neovascularisation or Fuchs' spot). Area under the curve (AUC) evaluation for predictors was performed for the population-based studies.

Results: The prevalence of MMD was 0.4%, 0.5%, 1.5% and 5.2% among Asians in rural India, Beijing, Russia and Singapore, respectively. In the population-based studies, older age (per year; OR=1.13), female (OR=2.0), spherical equivalent (SE; per negative diopter; OR=1.7), longer AL (per mm; OR=3.1) and lower education (OR=1.9) were associated with MMD after multivariable adjustment (all p<0.001). Similarly, in the clinic-based/school-based studies, older age (OR=1.07; p<0.001), female (OR=2.1; p<0.001), longer AL (OR=2.1; p<0.001) and lower education (OR=1.7; p=0.005) were associated with MMD after multivariable adjustment. SE had the highest AUC of 0.92, followed by AL (AUC=0.87). The combination of SE, age, education and gender had a marginally higher AUC (0.94).

Conclusion: In this pooled analysis of multiple Asian studies, older age, female, lower education, greater myopia severity and longer AL were risk factors of MMD, and myopic SE was the strongest single predictor of MMD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bjophthalmol-2020-316648DOI Listing
September 2020

1,1-Addition of α-C-Bridged Biphospholes with Alkynes.

Org Lett 2020 Sep 26;22(17):6972-6976. Epub 2020 Aug 26.

College of Chemistry, Green Catalysis Center, International Phosphorus Laboratory, International Joint Research Laboratory for Functional Organophosphorus Materials of Henan Province, Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou 450001, People's Republic of China.

An unusual chemoselective 1,1-addition of α-C-bridged biphospholes to terminal alkynes is reported. The developed protocol provides simple access to the unknown 1,3-diphosphepines, which has potential applications in the coordination and catalyst chemistry. Their Pd and Mo complexes were studied by single-crystal X-ray diffraction analysis. This method features excellent chemoselectivity, high step and atom economy, mild reaction conditions, and wide substrate scope.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.orglett.0c02521DOI Listing
September 2020

Changes of the tear film lipid layer thickness after cataract surgery in patients with diabetes mellitus.

Acta Ophthalmol 2021 Mar 4;99(2):e202-e208. Epub 2020 Aug 4.

Eye Institute, Eye & ENT Hospital, Shanghai Medical College, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.

Purpose: To evaluate changes in the tear film lipid layer thickness (LLT) in cataract patients with diabetes mellitus (DM) after cataract surgery.

Methods: We recruited consecutive cataract patients and recorded data regarding DM condition. Lipid layer thickness (LLT) and partial blinks rates measured with the LipiView interferometer, tear break-up time (TBUT) and Schirmer's tests, and dry eye symptoms evaluated with the Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI) questionnaire were conducted before and one month after cataract surgery.

Results: Finally, 38 age-related cataract (ARC) and 31 diabetic cataract (DC) patients were available for analysis. No significant difference in preoperative LLT and partial blink rates was found between ARC and DC group. However, preoperative TBUT and Schirmer's test results were significantly lower in DC group compared to ARC group (both p < 0.001). DC group showed higher preoperative OSDI score with no significant difference than ARC group (p = 0.279). In DC group, LLT was significantly thinner in cases with longer duration of DM (over 10 years) than in those with shorter duration (p < 0.001). One month after surgery, LLT of DC group was significantly thinner than at baseline (pre: 65.7 ± 23.3, post: 51.3 ± 17.1, p = 0.002). While in ARC group, LLT had no significant difference before and after cataract surgery (pre: 67.1 ± 23.4, post: 60.2 ± 21.1, p = 0.078). Compared to baseline data, there was no statistically significant difference between two groups in the partial blink rates, TBUT and Schirmer's test results after cataract surgery (p > 0.05). Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI) scores were significantly higher after surgery than at baseline in both ARC (pre: 8.9 ± 8.4, post: 12.4 ± 8.5, p = 0.003) and DC group (pre: 11.4 ± 10.3, post: 18.5 ± 8.5, p = 0.001). Multivariate linear regression analysis showed OSDI scores were associated with LLT either before or after cataract surgery (β = -0.862, p < 0.001 and β = -0.592, p < 0.001, respectively).

Conclusion: The tear film LLT is correlated with duration of DM and becomes significantly thinner one month after cataract surgery, leading to the aggravation of dry eye symptoms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/aos.14565DOI Listing
March 2021

The Beta-Diversity of -Associated Microbial Communities From Different Habitats Increases With Body Weight.

Front Microbiol 2020 7;11:1562. Epub 2020 Jul 7.

Environmental Microbiomics Research Center, School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Zhuhai), Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China.

Fish-associated microbial communities play important roles in host growth, health and disease in the symbiont ecosystem; however, their diversity patterns and underlying mechanisms in different body habitats remain poorly understood. is one of the most important consumers of macroalgae and an excellent natural marine source of nutritional lipids for humans, and widely distributes in shallow coastal areas. Here we systematically studied the microbial communities of 108 wild in four body habitats (i.e., skin, gill, stomach, and hindgut) and surrounding water. We found that the β-diversity but not α-diversity of fish-associated microbial communities from each habitat significantly ( < 0.05) increased as body weight increased. Also, opportunistic pathogens and probiotics (e.g., , ) appeared to be widely distributed in different body habitats, and many digestive bacteria (e.g., ) in the hindgut; the abundances of some core OTUs associated with digestive bacteria, "" (OTU_6 and OTU_46724) and "" (OTU_33295) in the hindgut increased as body weight increased. Additionally, the quantification of ecological processes indicated that heterogeneous selection was the major process (46-70%) governing the community assembly of fish microbiomes, whereas the undominated process (64%) was found to be more important for the water microbiome. The diversity pattern showed that β-diversity (75%) of the metacommunity overweight the α-diversity (25%), confirming that the niche separation of microbial communities in different habitats and host selection were important to shape the fish-associated microbial community structure. This study enhances our mechanistic understanding of fish-associated microbial communities in different habitats, and has important implications for analyzing host-associated metacommunities.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2020.01562DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7358552PMC
July 2020

Thermosensitive bFGF-Modified Hydrogel with Dental Pulp Stem Cells on Neuroinflammation of Spinal Cord Injury.

ACS Omega 2020 Jul 25;5(26):16064-16075. Epub 2020 Jun 25.

School and Hospital of Stomatology, Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, Zhejiang 325035, China.

Acute spinal cord injury (SCI) induces severe neuroinflammation, which increases intermediary filaments and neurodegeneration. Previous studies have shown that a basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) and dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs) contribute to a protective effect on injured neuronal cells, but the mechanism of SCI repair is still unclear. In this study, in situ heparin (HeP) hydrogel injection containing bFGF and DPSCs (HeP-bFGF-DPSCs), as well as in vitro studies of bFGF and DPSCs, proved an effective control over inflammation. The in vivo application of HeP-bFGF-DPSCs regulated inflammatory reactions and accelerated the nerve regeneration through microtubule stabilization and tissue vasculature. Our mechanistic investigation also showed that bFGF-DPSCs treatment inhibited microglia/macrophage proliferation and activation. Furthermore, HeP-bFGF-DPSCs prevented microglia/macrophage activation and reduced proinflammatory cytokine release. In this paper, we discovered that bFGF and DPSCs worked together to attenuate tissue inflammation of the injured spinal cord, resulting in a superior nerve repair. Our results indicated that a thermosensitive hydrogel delivering bFGF and DPSCs could serve as a promising treatment option for spinal cord injuries.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsomega.0c01379DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7346236PMC
July 2020

Optogenetics inspired transition metal dichalcogenide neuristors for in-memory deep recurrent neural networks.

Nat Commun 2020 06 25;11(1):3211. Epub 2020 Jun 25.

School of Materials Science and Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, 50 Nanyang Avenue, Singapore, 639798, Singapore.

Shallow feed-forward networks are incapable of addressing complex tasks such as natural language processing that require learning of temporal signals. To address these requirements, we need deep neuromorphic architectures with recurrent connections such as deep recurrent neural networks. However, the training of such networks demand very high precision of weights, excellent conductance linearity and low write-noise- not satisfied by current memristive implementations. Inspired from optogenetics, here we report a neuromorphic computing platform comprised of photo-excitable neuristors capable of in-memory computations across 980 addressable states with a high signal-to-noise ratio of 77. The large linear dynamic range, low write noise and selective excitability allows high fidelity opto-electronic transfer of weights with a two-shot write scheme, while electrical in-memory inference provides energy efficiency. This method enables implementing a memristive deep recurrent neural network with twelve trainable layers with more than a million parameters to recognize spoken commands with >90% accuracy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-16985-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7316775PMC
June 2020

Optogenetics inspired transition metal dichalcogenide neuristors for in-memory deep recurrent neural networks.

Nat Commun 2020 06 25;11(1):3211. Epub 2020 Jun 25.

School of Materials Science and Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, 50 Nanyang Avenue, Singapore, 639798, Singapore.

Shallow feed-forward networks are incapable of addressing complex tasks such as natural language processing that require learning of temporal signals. To address these requirements, we need deep neuromorphic architectures with recurrent connections such as deep recurrent neural networks. However, the training of such networks demand very high precision of weights, excellent conductance linearity and low write-noise- not satisfied by current memristive implementations. Inspired from optogenetics, here we report a neuromorphic computing platform comprised of photo-excitable neuristors capable of in-memory computations across 980 addressable states with a high signal-to-noise ratio of 77. The large linear dynamic range, low write noise and selective excitability allows high fidelity opto-electronic transfer of weights with a two-shot write scheme, while electrical in-memory inference provides energy efficiency. This method enables implementing a memristive deep recurrent neural network with twelve trainable layers with more than a million parameters to recognize spoken commands with >90% accuracy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-16985-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7316775PMC
June 2020

Cilioretinal Arteries and Macular Vasculature in Highly Myopic Eyes: An OCT Angiography-Based Study.

Ophthalmol Retina 2020 10 26;4(10):965-972. Epub 2020 May 26.

Eye Institute, Eye and Ear, Nose, and Throat Hospital of Fudan University, Shanghai, China; Key Laboratory of Myopia, Ministry of Health, Shanghai, China; Key Laboratory of Visual Impairment and Restoration of Shanghai, Shanghai, China; Key NHC Key Laboratory of Myopia, Fudan University, Shanghai, China; Laboratory of Myopia, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Shanghai, China. Electronic address:

Purpose: To determine the association between the presence of cilioretinal arteries and the macular vasculature in highly myopic eyes using OCT angiography (OCTA).

Design: Retrospective, observational case series.

Participants: Four hundred eighty-one highly myopic eyes of 481 patients.

Methods: Fundus photographs were reviewed to determine the presence of a cilioretinal artery and its distribution, based on whether its path or visible branches reached the region within 500 μm of the foveal center. The macular vasculature was analyzed in OCTA images, including the vessel density (VD), fractal dimension (FD), and foveal avascular zone (FAZ). The associations between the presence of a cilioretinal artery and its distribution and between the macular vasculature and visual acuity were evaluated.

Main Outcome Measures: Cilioretinal arteries, macular vasculature, and their associations.

Results: Of the eyes included, 17.05% (82/481) had a cilioretinal artery. Based on the OCTA analysis, the eyes with cilioretinal arteries showed significantly higher VD and FD in both superficial and deep capillary plexuses and smaller FAZ than those without (all P < 0.001). However, these differences were not found in the subgroup of eyes with an axial length of more than 30 mm. Eyes with cilioretinal arteries that reached the central foveal area showed significantly higher VD and FD in both capillary plexuses and smaller FAZ than those that did not (all P < 0.05). Better best-corrected visual acuity was identified in the eyes with cilioretinal arteries than in those without (0.09 ± 0.14 logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution [logMAR] vs. 0.21 ± 0.27 logMAR, respectively; P < 0.001). In particular, eyes with cilioretinal arteries that reached the central foveal area had better visual acuity than those without (0.05 ± 0.06 logMAR vs. 0.16 ± 0.20logMAR, respectively; P = 0.005).

Conclusions: This OCTA-based study suggested that cilioretinal arteries in highly myopic eyes potentially may improve the macular vasculature and influence visual function.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.oret.2020.05.014DOI Listing
October 2020

Identification of herbal categories active in pain disorder subtypes by machine learning help reveal novel molecular mechanisms of algesia.

Pharmacol Res 2020 06 8;156:104797. Epub 2020 Apr 8.

Beijing University of Chinese Medicine, Beijing, 100029, China. Electronic address:

Chronic pain is highly prevalent and poorly controlled, of which the accurate underlying mechanisms need be further elucidated. Herbal drugs have been widely used for controlling various pain disorders. The systematic integration of pain herbal data resources might be promising to help investigate the molecular mechanisms of pain phenotypes. Here, we integrated large-scale bibliographic literatures and well-established data sources to obtain high-quality pain relevant herbal data (i.e. 426 pain related herbs with their targets). We used machine learning method to identify three distinct herb categories with their specific indications of symptoms, targets and enriched pathways, which were characterized by the efficacy of treatment to the chronic cough related neuropathic pain, the reproduction and autoimmune related pain, and the cancer pain, respectively. We further detected the novel pathophysiological mechanisms of the pain subtypes by network medicine approach to evaluate the interactions between herb targets and the pain disease modules. This work increased the understanding of the underlying molecular mechanisms of pain subtypes that herbal drugs are participating and with the ultimate aim of developing novel personalized drugs for pain disorders.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.phrs.2020.104797DOI Listing
June 2020

Identification and characterization of a novel bacterial carbohydrate esterase from the bacterium Pantoea ananatis Sd-1 with potential for degradation of lignocellulose and pesticides.

Biotechnol Lett 2020 Aug 6;42(8):1479-1488. Epub 2020 Mar 6.

Hunan Province Key Laboratory of Plant Functional Genomics and Developmental Regulation, College of Biology, Hunan University, Changsha, Hunan, 410008, People's Republic of China.

Objective: Identification and characterization of a novel bacterial carbohydrate esterase (PaCes7) with application potential for lignocellulose and pesticide degradation.

Results: PaCes7 was identified from the lignocellulolytic bacterium, Pantoea ananatis Sd-1 as a new carbohydrate esterase. Recombinant PaCes7 heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli showed a clear preference for esters with short-chain fatty acids and exhibited maximum activity towards α-naphthol acetate at 37 °C and pH 7.5. Purified PaCes7 exhibited its catalytic activity under mesophilic conditions and retained more than 40% activity below 30 °C. It displayed a relatively wide pH stability from pH 6-11. Furthermore, the enzyme was strongly resistant to Mg, Pb, and Co and activated by K and Ca. Both P. ananatis Sd-1 and PaCes7 could degrade the pesticide carbaryl. Additionally, PaCes7 was shown to work in combination with cellulase and/or xylanase in rice straw degradation.

Conclusions: The data suggest that PaCes7 possesses promising biotechnological potential.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10529-020-02855-8DOI Listing
August 2020