Publications by authors named "Wen Zeng"

277 Publications

[The Clinical Effectiveness of Neural Network-based Boundary Recognition of Upper Abdominal Organs on CT Images].

Sichuan Da Xue Xue Bao Yi Xue Ban 2021 Mar;52(2):306-310

Department of Radiology, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, China.

Objective: To assess the clinical effectiveness of boundary recognition of upper abdomen organs on CT images based on neural network model and the combination of different slices.

Methods: A total of 2 000 patients who underwent upper abdomen enhanced CT scans from March 2018 to March 2019 were included in the study. The quality of the CT images met the requirements for clinical diagnosis. Eight boundary layers (the upper and lower edge of liver, the upper and lower edge of spleen, the lower edge of left kidney, the lower edge of right kidney, the lower edge of the stomach and the lower edge of the gallbladder) of the main organs in the upper abdomen were labeled. The model training (training set, verification set and test set) based on different neural network methods and combinations of different slices were then performed to assess the accuracy of boundary recognition. Furthermore, clinical data from 50 cases were used as test group for assessing the accuracy and clinical effectiveness of this model.

Results: The fusion model created by integrating the two models according to different weight ratios yielded the highest accuracy, and then followed the EfficientNet-b3 model, with the Xception model showing the lowest accuracy. In each model, the boundary recognition accuracy of 5-slice image is higher than that of 3-silce image, and that of 1-slice image is the lowest. The recognition accuracy of fusion model of the 5-continuous-slice image for upper edge of liver, lower edge of liver, upper edge of spleen, lower edge of spleen, lower edge of left kidney, lower edge of right kidney, lower edge of stomach and lower edge of gallbladder was 91%, 87%, 92%, 85%, 92%, 95%, 76% and 74%, respectively. The fusion model was checked with the effectiveness data of 50 cases, yielding 88%, 86%, 88%, 80%, 82%, 80%, 69%, and 65% accuracy for 8-slice image, respectively, and the accuracy of meeting clinical application requirement was as high as 98%, 98%, 95%, 98%, 99%, 98%, 80% and 77%, respectively.

Conclusion: By increasing boundary change logics in the continuous slices, the fusion model integrating different weight proportions demonstrates the highest accuracy for identifying the boundary of upper abdominal organs on CT images, achieving high examination effectiveness in clinical practice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12182/20210360201DOI Listing
March 2021

[Noise Reduction Effect of Deep-learning-based Image Reconstruction Algorithms in Thin-section Chest CT].

Sichuan Da Xue Xue Bao Yi Xue Ban 2021 Mar;52(2):286-292

Department of Radiology, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, China.

Objective: To evaluate the noise reduction effect of deep learning-based reconstruction algorithms in thin-section chest CT images by analyzing images reconstructed with filtered back projection (FBP), adaptive statistical iterative reconstruction (ASIR), and deep learning image reconstruction (DLIR) algorithms.

Methods: The chest CT scan raw data of 47 patients were included in this study. Images of 0.625 mm were reconstructed using six reconstruction methods, including FBP, ASIR hybrid reconstruction (ASIR50%, ASIR70%), and deep learning low, medium and high modes (DL-L, DL-M, and DL-H). After the regions of interest were outlined in the aorta, skeletal muscle and lung tissue of each group of images, the CT values, SD values and signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of the regions of interest were measured, and two radiologists evaluated the image quality.

Results: CT values, SD values and SNR of the images obtained by the six reconstruction methods showed statistically significant difference ( <0.001). There were statistically significant differences in the image quality scores of the six reconstruction methods ( <0.001). Images reconstruced with DL-H have the lowest noise and the highest overall quality score.

Conclusion: The model based on deep learning can effectively reduce the noise of thin-section chest CT images and improve the image quality. Among the three deep-learning models, DL-H showed the best noise reduction effect.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12182/20210360506DOI Listing
March 2021

Comparing the Value of Cystatin C and Serum Creatinine for Evaluating the Renal Function and Predicting the Prognosis of COVID-19 Patients.

Front Pharmacol 2021 22;12:587816. Epub 2021 Mar 22.

Department of Neurosurgery, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, Wuhan, China.

Coronavirus disease- (COVID-19-) related renal function abnormality is associated with poor prognosis. However, the clinical significance of dynamic changes in renal function indicators has not been studied, and no studies have evaluated the renal function in COVID-19 patients by cystatin C. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of abnormal renal function on admission on prognosis of COVID-19 patients and the prognostic value of various renal function indicators. A total of 1,764 COVID-19 patients without a history of chronic kidney disease were categorized into two groups, an elevated cystatin C group and a normal cystatin C group, based on the results of renal function tests on admission. The clinical characteristics were compared between the two groups, and logistic or Cox regression analyses were performed to explore the associations between elevated cystatin C/serum creatinine levels and disease severity and survival. We also performed receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve, Kaplan-Meier survival, and curve fitting analyses. When adjusted for several significant clinical variables, elevated cystatin C levels on admission were independent predictors of disease severity ( < 0.001), and elevated creatinine levels were independent predictors of death ( = 0.020). Additionally, the ROC curve analysis shows that elevated cystatin C levels [area under the curve (AUC): 0.656] have a better predictive value for disease severity than elevated creatinine levels (AUC: 0.540). The survival curves of patients with elevated cystatin C/creatinine levels show a sharper decline than those of patients with normal cystatin C/creatinine levels ( < 0.001). The curve fitting analysis revealed that, compared to the flat curves of cystatin C and creatinine levels for patients who survived, the curves for patients who died kept rising, and cystatin C levels rose above the normal range earlier than creatinine. Elevated cystatin C, which occurs earlier than serum creatinine, is useful for the early detection of renal function abnormality and might have better predictive value for disease severity in COVID-19 patients, while elevated serum creatinine may have a better predictive value for risks of death.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fphar.2021.587816DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8019901PMC
March 2021

Refusal of cancer-directed surgery in male breast cancer.

Medicine (Baltimore) 2021 Apr;100(13):e25116

Department of Plastic Surgery.

Abstract: It has been reported that some male breast cancer patients may refuse the recommended surgery, but the incidence rate in the United States is not clear. The purpose of this study was to identify the incidence, trends, risk factors, and eventual survival outcomes associated with the rejection of such cancer-directed surgery.We collected data on 5860 patients with male breast cancer (MBC) from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results database, including 50 patients refusing surgery as recommended. Kaplan-Meier survival analysis and Cox proportional hazard regression were used to identify the effects of refusing surgery on cancer-specific survival (CSS) and overall survival (OS). The association between acceptance or rejection of surgery and mortality were estimated by nested Cox proportional hazards regression models with adjustment for age, race, clinical characteristics, and radiation.Of the 5860 patients identified, 50 (0.9%) refused surgery. Old age (≥65: hazard ratio [HR]: 3.056, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.738-5.374, P < .0001), higher AJCC stage (III: HR: 3.283, 95% CI: 2.134-5.050, P < .0001, IV: HR: 14.237, 95% CI: 8.367-24.226, P < .0001), progesterone receptor status (negative: HR: 1.633, 95% CI: 1.007-2.648, P = .047) were considered risk factors. Compared with the surgery group, the refusal group was associated with a poorer prognosis in both OS and CSS (χ2 = 94.81, P < .001, χ2 = 140.4, P < .001). Moreover, significant differences were also observed in OS and CSS among 1:3 matched groups (P = .0002, P < .001).Compared with the patients undergoing surgery, the patients who refused the cancer-directed surgery had poor prognosis in the total survival period, particularly in stage II and III. The survival benefit for undergoing surgery remained even after adjustment, which indicates the importance of surgical treatment before an advanced stage for male breast cancer patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/MD.0000000000025116DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8021363PMC
April 2021

Effects of bioactive components of Pu-erh tea on gut microbiomes and health: A review.

Food Chem 2021 Mar 3;353:129439. Epub 2021 Mar 3.

Key Laboratory for Industrial Biocatalysis, Ministry of Education of China, Department of Chemical Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China; Centre for Synthetic and Systems Biology, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China; Institute of Biopharmaceutical and Health Engineering, Tsinghua Shenzhen International Graduate School, Shenzhen 518055, China; Institute of Biomedical Health Technology and Engineering, Shenzhen Bay Laboratory, Shenzhen 518055, China. Electronic address:

Pu-erh tea is a post-fermentation tea with unique flavor and multiple health benefits. Due to the various microorganisms involved in the post-fermentation process, Pu-erh tea contains highly complex components, which have rich interactions with the gut microbiomes (GMs). Because the structure and homeostasis of GMs are closely related to human wellness and the various diseases progress, the beneficial effects of Pu-erh tea on GMs have a great potential for application in health care. However, there is no systematic summary of the bioactive components of Pu-erh tea, and their effects on the GMs. Here, we review the current studies on the effects of Pu-erh tea and its bioactive components on the structure of GMs as well as on health improvement, and further discuss the relevant quality indicators. This "components - function - indicators" clue will hopefully stimulate the standardization of Pu-erh tea fermentation process and the development of its functional products.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2021.129439DOI Listing
March 2021

Endothelial Progenitor Cell-Derived Microvesicles Promote Angiogenesis in Rat Brain Microvascular Endothelial Cells .

Front Cell Neurosci 2021 18;15:638351. Epub 2021 Feb 18.

Department of Neonatology, Chengdu Women's and Children's Central Hospital, School of Medicine, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu, China.

Brain microvascular endothelial cells (BMECs) are a major component of the blood-brain barrier that maintains brain homeostasis. Preserving and restoring the normal biological functions of BMECs can reverse or reduce brain injury. Endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) may promote brain vascular remodeling and restore normal endothelial function. As a novel vehicle for cell-cell communication, microvesicles (MVs) have varied biological functions. The present study investigated the biological effects of EPC-derived MVs (EPC-MVs) on BMECs . We isolated MVs from the supernatant of EPCs in a serum-depleted medium. BMECs were cultured alone or in the presence of EPC-MVs. BMEC viability and proliferation were evaluated with the Cell Counting Kit-8 and by flow cytometry, and the proangiogenic effect of EPC-MVs on BMECs was assessed with the transwell migration, wound healing, and tube formation assays. Our results showed that EPC-derived MVs labeled with DiI were internalized by cultured BMECs; this enhanced BMEC viability and promoted their proliferation. EPC-MVs also stimulated migration and tube formation in BMECs. These results demonstrate that EPC-derived MVs exert a proangiogenic effect on BMECs, which has potential applications in cell-free therapy for brain injury.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fncel.2021.638351DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7930325PMC
February 2021

Selection of different endothelialization modes and different seed cells for tissue-engineered vascular graft.

Bioact Mater 2021 Aug 6;6(8):2557-2568. Epub 2021 Feb 6.

Department of Cell Biology, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, 400038, China.

Tissue-engineered vascular grafts (TEVGs) have enormous potential for vascular replacement therapy. However, thrombosis and intimal hyperplasia are important problems associated with TEVGs especially small diameter TEVGs (<6 mm) after transplantation. Endothelialization of TEVGs is a key point to prevent thrombosis. Here, we discuss different types of endothelialization and different seed cells of tissue-engineered vascular grafts. Meanwhile, endothelial heterogeneity is also discussed. Based on it, we provide a new perspective for selecting suitable types of endothelialization and suitable seed cells to improve the long-term patency rate of tissue-engineered vascular grafts with different diameters and lengths.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bioactmat.2020.12.021DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7887299PMC
August 2021

Chylous ascites following repair of total anomalous pulmonary venous connection coexisting with a persistent left superior vena cava in a neonate: a case report.

Transl Pediatr 2021 Jan;10(1):188-193

Department of Pediatric Critical Medicine, Chengdu Women's and Children's Central Hospital, School of Medicine, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu, China.

Chylous ascites refers to the accumulation of lymphatic fluid in the peritoneal cavity. The causes of chylous ascites are various, and commonly include traumatic injury and obstruction, which disrupt the lymphatic system. In addition, cardiothoracic surgery may injure the thoracic duct and lead to chylothorax. However, there are very few reported cases of isolated chylous ascites developing following cardiothoracic surgery. In this paper, we report a case of postoperative chylous ascites in a full-term neonate. The infant underwent cardiothoracic surgery via thoracotomy to repair total anomalous pulmonary venous connection coexisting with a persistent left superior vena cava on day of life 17, and there was a significant increase in abdominal girth on postoperative day 12 (day of life 29). Abdominal ultrasound revealed an 8 mm thick ascites without pleural effusion. Abdominal paracentesis was performed and the milky-white peritoneal fluid was positive for Sudan III staining and the chylous test. The triglyceride concentration of the ascitic fluid was 691 mg/dL and the concentration of protein was 39.4 g/L. Additionally, the ascitic fluid also contained 6 360×10/L of white blood cells, predominantly lymphocytes. These results suggested the infant developed chylous ascites. Conservative management with fasting and medium-chain triglycerides-based formula successfully resolved the chylous ascites without reoccurrence. We present our experience of this rare condition and discuss the possible causes of chylous ascites in this case.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.21037/tp-20-258DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7882300PMC
January 2021

TPP ionically cross-linked chitosan/PLGA microspheres for the delivery of NGF for peripheral nerve system repair.

Carbohydr Polym 2021 Apr 22;258:117684. Epub 2021 Jan 22.

Department of Spine Surgery, Honghui Hospital, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an, Shaanxi, 710054, China. Electronic address:

To control the release of nerve growth factor (NGF) in the injured peripheral nerve, NGF-loaded chitosan/PLGA composite microspheres ionically cross-linked by tripolyphosphate (TPP/Chitosan/PLGA-NGF) were prepared. The encapsulation efficiency of NGF ranged from 83.4 ± 1.5 % to 72.1 ± 1.6 % with TPP concentrations from 1 % to 10 %. Zeta potential and FT-IR analyses together with confocal microscopy demonstrated that multiple NGF-loaded PLGA microspheres were embedded in chitosan matrix, the mean size of TPP/Chitosan/PLGA-NGF microspheres ranged from 40.2 ± 3.4 to 49.3 ± 3.1 μm. The increase of TPP concentration improved the network stability and decreased the swelling ratio, resulting in the decreased NGF release from 67.7 ± 1.2 % to 45.7 ± 0.8 % in 49 days. The sustained release of NGF could promote PC12 cells differentiation and neurite growth in vitro. Moreover, in comparison with NGF solution without microencapsulation, TPP/Chitosan/PLGA-NGF microspheres enhanced sciatic nerve regeneration and prevented gastrocnemius muscle atrophy in rats. These results demonstrate the feasibility of using TPP/Chitosan/PLGA-NGF microspheres for neural tissue repair.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.carbpol.2021.117684DOI Listing
April 2021

Progress in the treatment of knee osteoarthritis with high tibial osteotomy: a systematic review.

Syst Rev 2021 Feb 14;10(1):56. Epub 2021 Feb 14.

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Chengdu Medical College, China National Nuclear Corporation 416 Hospital, Chengdu, 610000, Sichuan, China.

Background: High tibial osteotomy (HTO) has been used for over 60 years in clinical practice and mainly comprises two major techniques: closed wedge high tibial osteotomy (CWHTO) and open wedge high tibial osteotomy (OWHTO). However, these have been gradually replaced by total knee arthroplasty (TKA), due to inconsistent clinical results and many complications. With the concept of knee-protection and ladder treatment of osteoarthritis, as an effective minimally invasive treatment for knee osteoarthritis, HTO has once again received attention.

Methods: A systematic literature search was conducted in PubMed, Embase, ClinicalKey, CNKI, and the China Wanfang database. The search terms relating to osteoarthritis and high tibial osteotomy were used. Studies were considered eligible if the participants were adults with knee osteoarthritis (KOA) who had undergone HTO. A total of two reviewers participated in the selection of the studies. Reviewer 1 was assigned to screen titles and abstracts, and reviewer 2 to screen full-text data. Data extraction was completed by reviewer 2, and 30% were checked by the research team. Potential conflicts were resolved through discussion. The methodological quality was assessed using a risk of bias, based on the Cochrane handbook and Newcastle-Ottawa assessment scale. The outcome indicators are (1) posterior slope of tibial plateau, (2) the height of the patella, (3) fracture in the osteotomy plane, (4) survival rate, (5) special surgery knee score (HSS), and (6) the recurrence of varus deformity of the included studies were evaluated according to the guidelines of the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development, and Evaluation (GRADE) working group (Atkins et al., BMJ 328:1490, 2004).

Results: Among the 18 articles included, 10 were prospective cohort studies, five were randomized controlled trial (RCT) studies, one was prospective comparative study (PCS), one was retrospective comparative study (RCS), and one was retrospective cohort. The earliest publication year was 1999, and the most recent was 2018. A total of 6555 eligible cases were included, comprised of 3351 OWHTO patients and 3204 CWHTO patients. Five RCT were assessed using risk of bias, based on the Cochrane handbook. Eleven cohort studies and two case-control studies were assessed using the Newcastle-Ottawa assessment scale. These six outcome indicators for a total of twenty-four evidence individuals were evaluated separately, among which the GRADE classification of 1, 2, and 6 was medium quality, and 3, 4, and 5 were low quality. Based on our systematic review, regardless of whether the chosen procedure was OWHTO or CWHTO, both HSS scores increased significantly as compared with the preoperative scores. Compared with CWHTO, the height of the patella and tibial posterior slope angle increased following OWHTO. Additionally, OWHTO has a better long-term survival rate and lower fracture rate, supporting OWHTO as the first treatment choice.

Conclusions: For young patients with knee osteoarthritis (KOA), high tibial osteotomy (HTO) can be considered as a treatment option to replace total knee arthroplasty (TKA) to reduce the economic burden and promote the reasonable allocation of medical resources. This study shows that compared with CWHTO, OWHTO has certain advantages in long-term survival rate and lower fracture rate, but the level of evidence is lower. In the future, we will need larger sample sizes and longer follow-up randomized controlled trials to improve our research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13643-021-01601-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7883424PMC
February 2021

Oxygen-Deficient Stannic Oxide/Graphene for Ultrahigh-Performance Supercapacitors and Gas Sensors.

Nanomaterials (Basel) 2021 Feb 2;11(2). Epub 2021 Feb 2.

College of Materials Science and Engineering, Chongqing University, Chongqing 400044, China.

The metal oxides/graphene nanocomposites have great application prospects in the fields of electrochemical energy storage and gas sensing detection. However, rational synthesis of such materials with good conductivity and electrochemical activity is the topical challenge for high-performance devices. Here, SnO/graphene nanocomposite is taken as a typical example and develops a universal synthesis method that overcome these challenges and prepares the oxygen-deficient SnO hollow nanospheres/graphene (r-SnO/GN) nanocomposite with excellent performance for supercapacitors and gas sensors. The electrode r-SnO/GN exhibits specific capacitance of 947.4 F g at a current density of 2 mA cm and of 640.0 F g even at 20 mA cm, showing remarkable rate capability. For gas-sensing application, the sensor r-SnO/GN showed good sensitivity (~13.8 under 500 ppm) and short response/recovering time toward methane gas. These performance features make r-SnO/GN nanocomposite a promising candidate for high-performance energy storage devices and gas sensors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/nano11020372DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7912979PMC
February 2021

First-Principle Insight into Ga-Doped MoS for Sensing SO, SOF and SOF.

Nanomaterials (Basel) 2021 Jan 26;11(2). Epub 2021 Jan 26.

College of Engineering and Technology, Southwest University, Chongqing 400715, China.

First-principle calculations were carried out to simulate the three decomposition gases (SO, SOF, and SOF) of sulfur hexafluoride (SF) on Ga-doped MoS (Ga-MoS) monolayer. Based on density functional theory (DFT), pure MoS and multiple gas molecules (SF, SO, SOF, and SOF) were built and optimized to the most stable structure. Four types of Ga-doped positions were considered and it was found that Ga dopant preferred to be adsorbed by the top of Mo atom (T). For the best adsorption effect, two ways of SO, SOF, and SOF to approach the doping model were compared and the most favorable mode was selected. The adsorption parameters of Ga-MoS and intrinsic MoS were calculated to analyze adsorption properties of Ga-MoS towards three gases. These analyses suggested that Ga-MoS could be a good gas-sensing material for SO and SOF, while it was not suitable for SOF sensing due to its weak adsorption. This work provides a theoretical basis for the development of Ga-MoS materials with the hope that it can be used as a good gas-sensing material for electrical equipment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/nano11020314DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7912144PMC
January 2021

Expansion within the CYP71D subfamily drives the heterocyclization of tanshinones synthesis in Salvia miltiorrhiza.

Nat Commun 2021 01 29;12(1):685. Epub 2021 Jan 29.

State Key Laboratory Breeding Base of Dao-di Herbs, National Resource Center for Chinese Materia Medica, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, Beijing, China.

Tanshinones are the bioactive nor-diterpenoid constituents of the Chinese medicinal herb Danshen (Salvia miltiorrhiza). These groups of chemicals have the characteristic furan D-ring, which differentiates them from the phenolic abietane-type diterpenoids frequently found in the Lamiaceae family. However, how the 14,16-epoxy is formed has not been elucidated. Here, we report an improved genome assembly of Danshen using a highly homozygous genotype. We identify a cytochrome P450 (CYP71D) tandem gene array through gene expansion analysis. We show that CYP71D373 and CYP71D375 catalyze hydroxylation at carbon-16 (C16) and 14,16-ether (hetero)cyclization to form the D-ring, whereas CYP71D411 catalyzes upstream hydroxylation at C20. In addition, we discover a large biosynthetic gene cluster associated with tanshinone production. Collinearity analysis indicates a more specific origin of tanshinones in Salvia genus. It illustrates the evolutionary origin of abietane-type diterpenoids and those with a furan D-ring in Lamiaceae.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-20959-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7846762PMC
January 2021

The Adsorption of H and CH on Ge-Doped and Cr-Doped Graphene Structures: A DFT Study.

Nanomaterials (Basel) 2021 Jan 16;11(1). Epub 2021 Jan 16.

College of Engineering and Technology, Southwest University, Chongqing 400715, China.

In order to find an excellent sensing material for dissolved gases in transformer oil, the adsorption structures of intrinsic graphene (IG), Ge-doped graphene (GeG), and Cr-doped graphene (CrG) to H and CH gas molecules were built. It was found that the doping site right above C atom (T) was the most stable structure by studying three potential doping positions of the Ge and Cr atom on the graphene surface. Then, the structural parameters, density of states, and difference state density of these adsorption systems were calculated and analyzed based on the density functional calculations. The results show that the adsorption properties of GeG and CrG systems for H and CH are obviously better than the IG system. Furthermore, by comparing the two doping systems, CrG system exhibits more outstanding adsorption performances to H and CH, especially for CH gas. Finally, the highest adsorption energy (-1.436 eV) and the shortest adsorption distance (1.981 Å) indicate that Cr-doped graphene is promising in the field of CH gas-sensing detection.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/nano11010231DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7830370PMC
January 2021

Strategic management of pediatric intensive care unit in a tertiary children's hospital in southwest China during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Transl Pediatr 2020 Dec;9(6):849-862

Department of Pediatric Critical Medicine, Chengdu Women's and Children's Central Hospital, School of Medicine, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu, China.

Since early December 2019, patients with unknown pneumonia have been found in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. The pathogen in these cases was quickly identified as a new type of coronavirus. The World Health Organization named it 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), and the disease caused by the pathogen was called 2019 Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), which was characterized by higher pathogenicity, transmission of human to human. So it has rapidly spread to more than 190 countries all over the world. With the sudden outbreak of COVID-19, preventing the spread of COVID-19 is the primary problem. Despite fewer children than adults have been affected by the COVID-19, Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), as a ward for critically ill patients, is also confronted with high risk of 2019-nCoV infection. It is necessary for PICU managers to thoroughly carry out scientific and effective department management and carefully execute of infection control measures to prevent the transmission. According to recommendations for the COVID-19 prevention and control, the relevant guidelines and the authors' work experience, this paper proposes and optimizes the strategic plan for the management of COVID-19 outbreak in PICU, and emphasizes that department managers should conduct comprehensive risk assessments, manage the pediatric patients and healthcare workers meticulously, strengthen the implementation of infection control measures, and use risk management and process control to effectively manage the department as well as to protect the safety of both the patients and the staff.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.21037/tp-20-422DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7804477PMC
December 2020

Rethinking the 8th AJCC System: Is It Suitable for Patients Aged <55 Years With Stage T4N1M0 Follicular Variant of Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma to Be Placed in Stage I?

Front Oncol 2020 11;10:543055. Epub 2020 Dec 11.

Department of Plastic Surgery, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, Wuhan, China.

Purpose: The newest (8th) edition of the TNM staging system published in 2017. In this edition, some significant changes happened from the previous edition. As a result, down-staging appeared in nearly one third of DTC patients. However, we don't know whether the new system predicts the survival of FVPTC patients accurately. Therefore, it is necessary to thoroughly evaluate the correlation between the new system and survival prediction in terms of FVPTC.

Methods: We enrolled 17,662 FVPTC patients from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results database. Factors associated with survival were identified by Cox regression analyses. The mortality rates per 1,000 person-years were calculated and compared. Cox proportional hazards regression quantified the risk of survival, and survival curves were produced by Kaplan-Meier analyses using log-rank tests.

Results: Age at diagnosis, race, T-stage at diagnosis, distant metastasis, radiation therapy, and surgery were independent factors associated with cancer-specific survival. Patients aged <55 years with stage T4N1M0 FVPTC had higher mortality rates per 1,000 person-years than patients in the same stage according to the 8th AJCC System. Cox proportional hazards regression reflected that patients aged <55 years with stage T1-3, any N, M0 or T4N0M0 disease (p=0.001) and patients aged ≥55 years with T1-2N0M0 disease (p=0.004) had significantly lower risks of cancer-specific survival (CSS) than those aged <55 years with stage T4N1M0 disease. The CSS curve of patients aged <55 years with stage T4N1M0 disease showed a decline on comparison with others belonging to stage I (p<0.001); and the curve was even not different from patients in stage II and stage III (p>0.05).

Conclusion: Patients aged <55 years with stage T4N1M0 FVPTC had worse survival than patients in stage I; no difference was seen on comparison with stage II patients. We recommend this group of patients be upstaged in the 8th AJCC system.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fonc.2020.543055DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7794009PMC
December 2020

Deep learning trained algorithm maintains the quality of half-dose contrast-enhanced liver computed tomography images: Comparison with hybrid iterative reconstruction: Study for the application of deep learning noise reduction technology in low dose.

Eur J Radiol 2021 Feb 5;135:109487. Epub 2021 Jan 5.

Department of Radiology, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu, China. Electronic address:

Purpose: This study compares the image and diagnostic qualities of a DEep Learning Trained Algorithm (DELTA) for half-dose contrast-enhanced liver computed tomography (CT) with those of a commercial hybrid iterative reconstruction (HIR) method used for standard-dose CT (SDCT).

Methods: This study enrolled 207 adults, and they were divided into two groups: SDCT and low-dose CT (LDCT). SDCT was reconstructed using the HIR method (SDCT), and LDCT was reconstructed using both the HIR method (LDCT) and DELTA (LDCT). Noise, Hounsfield unit (HU) values, signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR) were compared between three image series. Two radiologists assessed the noise, artefacts, overall image quality, visualisation of critical anatomical structures and lesion detection, characterisation and visualisation.

Results: The mean effective doses were 5.64 ± 1.96 mSv for SDCT and 2.87 ± 0.87 mSv for LDCT. The noise of LDCT was significantly lower than that of SDCT and LDCT. The SNR and CNR of LDCT were significantly higher than those of the other two groups. The overall image quality, visualisation of anatomical structures and lesion visualisation between LDCT and SDCT were not significantly different. For lesion detection, the sensitivities and specificities of SDCT vs. LDCT were 81.9 % vs. 83.7 % and 89.1 % vs. 86.3 %, respectively, on a per-patient basis. SDCT showed 75.4 % sensitivity and 82.6 % specificity for lesion characterisation on a per-patient basis, whereas LDCT showed 73.5 % sensitivity and 82.4 % specificity.

Conclusions: LDCT with DELTA had approximately 49 % dose reduction compared with SDCT with HIR while maintaining image quality on contrast-enhanced liver CT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejrad.2020.109487DOI Listing
February 2021

Elevated α-hydroxybutyrate dehydrogenase as an independent prognostic factor for mortality in hospitalized patients with COVID-19.

ESC Heart Fail 2021 02 17;8(1):644-651. Epub 2020 Dec 17.

Department of Neurosurgery, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, Donghu Road 169, Wuhan, 430071, China.

Aims: Many studies have explored the clinical characteristics of patients with coronavirus disease (COVID-19), especially patients with cardiovascular disease. However, associated mechanisms and markers remain to be further investigated. This study aimed to investigate the effect of α-hydroxybutyrate dehydrogenase (α-HBDH) levels on disease progression and prognosis of patients with COVID-19.

Methods And Results: One thousand seven hundred and fifty-one patients from the Leishenshan hospital in Wuhan were divided into elevated and normal groups by α-HBDH level, and the clinical information between the two groups was compared retrospectively. The main outcome evaluation criteria included in-hospital death and disease severity. Univariate and multivariate regression analyses, survival curves, logistic regression, and receiver operating characteristic curve models were performed to explore the relationship between elevated α-HBDH and the two outcomes. Besides, curve fitting analyses were conducted to analyse the relationship between computed tomography score and survival. Among 1751 patients with confirmed COVID-19, 15 patients (0.87%) died. The mean (SD) age of patients was 58 years in normal α-HBDH group and 66 years in elevated α-HBDH group (P < 0.001). The mortality during hospitalization was 0.26% (4 of 1559) for patients with normal α-HBDH levels and 5.73% (11 of 192) for those with elevated α-HBDH levels (P < 0.001). Multivariate Cox analysis confirmed an association between elevated α-HBDH levels and higher risk of in-hospital mortality [hazard ratio: 4.411, 95% confidence interval (95% CI), 1.127-17.260; P = 0.033]. Multivariate logistic regression for disease severity and α-HBDH levels showed significant difference between both groups (odds ratio = 3.759; 95% CI, 1.895-7.455; P < 0.001). Kaplan-Meier curves also illustrated the survival difference between normal and elevated α-HBDH patients (P < 0.001).

Conclusions: Our study found that serum α-HBDH is an independent risk factor for in-hospital mortality and disease severity among COVID-19 patients. α-HBDH assessment may aid clinicians in identifying high-risk individuals among COVID-19 patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ehf2.13151DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7835619PMC
February 2021

Effects of meteorological factors on daily outpatient visits for skin diseases: a time series study in a Chinese population.

Chin Med J (Engl) 2020 Dec 14. Epub 2020 Dec 14.

Department of Dermatology, Affiliated Hospital of Guizhou Medical University, Guiyang, Guizhou 550001, China.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/CM9.0000000000001290DOI Listing
December 2020

Novel GLP-1 analog supaglutide improves glucose homeostasis in diabetic monkeys.

J Endocrinol 2021 Feb;248(2):145-154

Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Huashan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.

Glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) is an insulinotropic hormone and plays an important role in regulating glucose homeostasis. GLP-1 has a short half-life (t1/2 < 2 min) due to degrading enzyme dipeptidyl peptidase-IV and rapid kidney clearance, which limits its clinical application as a therapeutic reagent. We demonstrated recently that supaglutide, a novel GLP-1 mimetic generated by recombinant fusion protein techniques, exerted hypoglycemic and β-cell trophic effects in type 2 diabetes db/db mice. In the present study, we examined supaglutide's therapeutic efficacy and pharmacokinetics in diabetic rhesus monkeys. We found that a single subcutaneous injection of supaglutide of tested doses transiently and significantly reduced blood glucose levels in a dose-dependent fashion in the diabetic monkeys. During a 4-week intervention period, treatment of supaglutide of weekly dosing dose-dependently decreased fasting and random blood glucose levels. This was associated with significantly declined plasma fructosamine levels. The repeated administration of supaglutide remarkably also decreased body weight in a dose-dependent fashion accompanied by decreased food intake. Intravenous glucose tolerance test results showed that supaglutide improved glucose tolerance. The intervention also showed enhanced glucose-stimulated insulin secretion and improved lipid profile in diabetic rhesus monkeys. These results reveal that supaglutide exerts beneficial effects in regulating blood glucose and lipid homeostasis in diabetic rhesus monkeys.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1530/JOE-20-0255DOI Listing
February 2021

Molecular cloning and functional identification of a high-efficiency (+)-borneol dehydrogenase from Cinnamomum camphora (L.) Presl.

Plant Physiol Biochem 2021 Jan 21;158:363-371. Epub 2020 Nov 21.

School of Pharmacy, Henan University of Chinese Medicine, No. 156 Jinshuidong Road, Zhengzhou, 450008, China; State Key Laboratory Breeding Base of Dao-di Herbs, National Resource Center for Chinese Materia Medica, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, No. 16 South Side Street, Dongzhimen, Beijing, 100700, China. Electronic address:

Cinnamomum camphora (L.) Presl, rich in terpenoids, is an important commercial plant. The monoterpenes borneol and camphor are highly desired compounds that have been widely and diversely used in medicine and spices since ancient times. However, the key enzymes in the biosynthetic pathway of borneol and camphor in C. camphora remains unknown, which limits access to these natural products. Here, the chirality of borneol and camphor were identified in C. camphora leaves. Besides the main (+)-borneol and (+)-camphor, C. camphora also contains small amounts of (-)-borneol and (-)-camphor. Then, CcBDH3 - an efficient (+)-borneol dehydrogenase (BDH) - was identified that catalyzed (+)-borneol into (+)-camphor in the presence of NAD. The K value was 25.1 μM with a k value of 5.4 × 10 s at pH 8.5 and 30 °C. CcBDH3, which also yields (-)-camphor from (-)-borneol as a substrate, had a K value of 36.9 μM with a k of 2.1 × 10 s, and pH of 8.0 and temperature of 32 °C. We further compared the conformational specificity of two other reported BDHs, ZSD1 and ADH2, and found that ZSD1 had the highest conversion rate with (-)-borneol. These findings provide a new way for the production of camphor with various optical activities by metabolic engineering, and the identified camphor biosynthesis pathway provides the foundation for using genetic engineering to improve the production and purity of (+)-borneol in planta.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.plaphy.2020.11.023DOI Listing
January 2021

Bilirubin Levels as Potential Indicators of Disease Severity in Coronavirus Disease Patients: A Retrospective Cohort Study.

Front Med (Lausanne) 2020 9;7:598870. Epub 2020 Nov 9.

Department of Neurosurgery, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, Wuhan, China.

The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has caused a large number of deaths. Some patients with severe or critical COVID-19 have been observed to have elevated bilirubin levels. Studies on the association of bilirubin level and mortality in patients with COVID-19 are limited. This study aimed to examine the role of bilirubin levels in COVID-19 severity and mortality. A retrospective cohort study was conducted in patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in Leishenshan Hospital in Wuhan, China. Cox regression analyses and logistic regression analyses were conducted to investigate the risks for mortality and disease severity, respectively. Kaplan-Meier analyses with log-rank tests were performed to assess the association between bilirubin level and survival. In total, 1,788 patients with COVID-19 were included in the analysis. 5.8% (4/69) of patients in the elevated serum total bilirubin (STB) group died, compared to 0.6% (11/1,719) of patients in the non-elevated STB group. The median alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) activities in the elevated STB group were 29 U/L [interquartile range (IQR): 16-45 U/L] and 22 U/L (IQR: 13-37 U /L), respectively, which were significantly higher than the median ALT (median: 23, IQR: 15-37) and AST (median: 20, IQR: 16-26) activities in the non-elevated STB group (both < 0.05). Patients with an elevated STB level showed increased mortality [hazard ratio (HR): 9.45, = 0.002], elevated conjugated bilirubin (CB) levels (HR: 4.38, = 0.03), and an elevated ratio of CB to unconjugated bilirubin (UCB, CB/UCB) (HR: 2.49, = 0.01). CB/UCB was positively correlated with disease severity (odds ratio: 2.21, = 0.01). COVID-19 patients with elevated STB and CB levels had a higher mortality, and CB/UCB was predictive of disease severity and mortality. Thus, it is necessary to pay special attention to COVID-19 patients with elevated bilirubin levels in clinical management.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmed.2020.598870DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7680876PMC
November 2020

Bioinformatic analysis of the pathogenic mechanism of talaromyces marneffei infection.

Medicine (Baltimore) 2020 Nov;99(48):e23409

Department of Respiratory Medicine, the Eighth Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Shenzhen, Guangdong.

Background: Talaromyces marneffei (T marneffei), known as a significant pathogen in patients with AIDS in Southeast Asia, is a dimorphic fungus, which can cause deadly systematic infection in immunocompromised hosts. What is more, the dimorphic phase transition has been reported as a conspicuous process linked with virulence. Interestingly, the yeast form was found in infected individuals, representing the pathogenic phase. However, few researches were found to study the mechanism of dimorphic transition. Thus, a diverse insight into the dimorphic switch mechanism, is urgently needed and we are the first one to research the mechanism of dimorphism.

Methods: Firstly, we investigated the microarray of T. marneffei in the Gene Expression Omnibus database (GEO) for differentially expressed genes (DEGs). Then Database for Annotation, Visualization and Integrated Discovery (DAVID) v6.8 was employed to analyze the underlying enrichment and pathway in biological process of DEGs. Meanwhile, protein-protein interaction (PPI) network was constructed using STRING database. On the strength of the theory that similar amino acid sequences share similar structures, which play a decisive role on the function of protein, three dimensional structures of hub-genes were predicted to further investigate the likely function of hub-genes.

Results: GSE51109 was elected as the eligible series for the purpose of our research, including GSM1238923 (GSM23), GSM1238924 (GSM24), and GSM1238925 (GSM25). PMAA_012920, PMAA_028730, PMAA_068140, PMAA_092900, PMAA_032350 were the most remarkable genes in all of the three PPI networks, thus, were viewed as hub-genes. With regard to the three-dimensional construction, except that there was no significant prediction structure of PMAA_092900 with the criterion seq identify > 30%, GMQE: 0-1, QMEAN4: -4-0, the parallel templates for four structures were Crystal structure of Saccharomyces cerevesiae mitochondrial NADP(+)-dependent isocitrate dehydrogenase in complex with isocitrate, Organellar two-pore channels (TPCs), Yeast Isocitrate Dehydrogenase (Apo Form) and Crystal Structure Of ATP-Dependent Phosphoenolpyruvate Carboxykinase From Thermus thermophilus HB8 in order.

Conclusion: The dimorphic transition of T. marneffei was viewed as a pathogenic factor and DEGs were observed. In-depth study of the function and pathway of DEGs revealed that PMAA_012920, PMAA_028730, PMAA_068140, PMAA_092900, PMAA_032350 were most likely acting as the hub-genes and were likely taking effect through regulating energy metabolism.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/MD.0000000000023409DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7710178PMC
November 2020

Novel analysis of prognosis of young patients with stage II differentiated thyroid cancer based on AJCC 8.0 and 6.0 criteria to implement the staging system.

Gland Surg 2020 Oct;9(5):1244-1257

Department of Plastic Surgery, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, Wuhan, China.

Background: The incidence of thyroid cancer among young adults is increasing; however, the clinical challenges specific to this population, such as diagnosis, reduced healthcare access, and inconsistent care, have received limited attention. Here, we conducted a subgroup analysis on a series of relatively young patients with differentiated thyroid carcinomas (DTCs), focusing on those with distant metastases at stage II, to obtain a deeper understanding of the factors influencing survival.

Methods: Information on <45- or <55-year-old patients at any T/N stage with distant metastasis (M1) was extracted from the SEER database according to the staging system in the 6 and 8 American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) editions, respectively. Patient mortality was evaluated using Cox proportional hazards regression analyses and Kaplan-Meier analyses with log-rank tests.

Results: Both cancer-specific and all-cause mortality rates per 1,000 person-years for patients ≥35 years old significantly differed from those of patients <35 years old. DTC-specific survival curves also significantly differed between these age groups, according to both the AJCC 6.0 and 8.0-based analyses (P=0.0017 and P<0.001, respectively), as did patient survival curves (P=0.0003, P<0.001, respectively). The multivariate Cox regression model also revealed that poor OS was strongly predicted by race (P<0.001) in the analysis based on the criteria of 8 AJCC staging system.

Conclusions: Age is a risk factor for disease-specific and overall survival (OS) in young patients with stage II DTC, and young male patients exhibited poorer survival than females. Race also emerged as a potential risk factor for young patients in stage II. These findings offer guidance for improving the older and newer versions of the AJCC staging system.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.21037/gs-20-46DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7667068PMC
October 2020

-Methyltransferases of Caffeine Biosynthetic Pathway in Plants.

J Agric Food Chem 2020 Dec 18;68(52):15359-15372. Epub 2020 Nov 18.

Department of Tea Science, College of Horticulture, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou 510642, China.

Caffeine (Cf) is one of the important components of plant-derived drinks, such as tea, coffee, and cola. It can protect soft tissues from being infected by pathogens and is also medically beneficial for human health. In this review, we first introduced the Cf biosynthesis pathways in plants and the related -methyltransferases (NMTs), with a focus on the current research status of the substrate specificity, structural basis for substrate recognition, and catalytic mechanism in members of the caffeine synthase gene family. In addition, we addressed the expression characteristics and potential regulatory mechanisms of NMTs and also projected the future research directions. The goal was to summarize the Cf biosynthetic pathway and related NMTs in plants and to provide the molecular basis for regulating the caffeine biosynthesis, so as to effectively guide future tea and coffee breeding.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jafc.0c06167DOI Listing
December 2020

Infection in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Patients: Report of Two Cases and Review of the Literature.

Infect Drug Resist 2020 23;13:3811-3816. Epub 2020 Oct 23.

Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Guangxi Medical University, Nanning, Guangxi 530021, Pepole's Republic of China.

Purpose: is a highly invasive fungus, causing fatal mycosis in patients with or without HIV in Southeast and Eastern Asia. However, its presence in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus is rarely reported.

Methods: We reported two SLE patients infected by and reviewed other patients reported in the English literature. All cases were pooled for analysis.

Results: Eleven patients with SLE infected with infection were identified, including the two presented here. Three were male and eight were female; all were HIV negative. All the patients, except two where data were missing, had received immunosuppressants before infection. The main clinical features included fever, cough, lymph node enlargement, gastrointestinal symptoms, and rash. Five patients were misdiagnosed as having SLE exacerbation. was detected via culture or histopathologic analysis, with the fungus most commonly found in the blood. Seven of the 11 patients were successfully treated by timely antifungal therapy with concomitant SLE control, while four patients who did not receive antifungal therapy died.

Conclusion: infection should be excluded when SLE patients, especially if on long-term immunosuppressants, present with fever, cough, lymph node enlargement, gastrointestinal symptoms, and rash. Controlling the lupus and timely antifungal treatment can improve the outcomes of SLE patients withinfection.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2147/IDR.S265479DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7591031PMC
October 2020

Long Non-coding RNA MALAT1 Upregulates ZEB2 Expression to Promote Malignant Progression of Glioma by Attenuating miR-124.

Mol Neurobiol 2021 Mar 19;58(3):1006-1016. Epub 2020 Oct 19.

Department of Neurosurgery, Tangdu Hospital, Air Force Medical University, Xi'an, Shaanxi, China.

Long non-coding RNA (lncRNA) metastasis-associated lung adenocarcinoma transcript 1 (MALAT1) has been shown to play a critical role in the development of several malignancies. However, the potential molecular mechanism of MALAT1 in glioma remains unclear. In the present study, we found that the expression of MALAT1 was aberrantly increased in both human glioma tissues and cells and associated with poor prognosis in glioma patients. We further found that MALAT1 silencing significantly inhibited glioma cell proliferation while induced cell cycle arrest and apoptosis. In parallel, knockdown of MALAT1 decreased tumor volume in vivo. These results suggested that MALAT1 acts as a functional oncogene, resulting in the oncogenicity in glioma. Nevertheless, the tumor-suppressive effect of MALAT1 silencing was reversed by miR-124. Besides, the relevance of ZEB2 in tumor progression has been studied in several forms of human cancer, and ZEB2 was identified as a target of miR-124 and negatively regulated by miR-124. MALAT1 overexpression or miR-124 inhibitor led to increased expression of ZEB2. In summary, our study depicts a novel pathway of MALAT1/miR-124/ZEB2 that regulates the progression of glioma and might provide a promising strategy for glioma therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12035-020-02165-0DOI Listing
March 2021

Association of procalcitonin levels with the progression and prognosis of hospitalized patients with COVID-19.

Int J Med Sci 2020 9;17(16):2468-2476. Epub 2020 Sep 9.

Department of Neurosurgery, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, Wuhan, 430071, China.

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was first announced in Wuhan, and has rapidly evolved into a pandemic. However, the risk factors associated with the severity and mortality of COVID-19 are yet to be described in detail. We retrospectively reviewed the information of 1525 cases from the Leishenshan Hospital in Wuhan. Univariate and multivariate Cox regression analyses were generated to explore the relationship between procalcitonin (PCT) level and the progression and prognosis of COVID-19. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed to explore the relationship between disease severity in hospitalized patients and their PCT levels. Survival curves and the cumulative hazard function for COVID-19 progression were conducted in the two groups. To further detect the relationship between the computed tomography score and survival days, curve-fitting analyses were performed. Patients in the elevated PCT group had a higher incidence of severe and critical severity conditions ( 0.001), death, and higher computed tomography (CT) scores. There was an association between elevated PCT levels and mortality in the univariate ((hazard ratio [1], 3.377; 95% confidence interval [2], 1.012-10.344; 0.033) and multivariate Cox regression analysis (HR, 4.933; 95% CI, 1.170-20.788; 0.030). Similarly, patients with elevated PCT were more likely to have critically severe disease conditions in the univariate (odds ratio [2], 7.247; 95% CI, 3.559-14.757; 0.001) and multivariate logistic regression analysis (OR, 10.679; 95% CI, 4.562-25.000; 0.001). Kaplan-Meier curves showed poorer prognosis for patients with elevated PCT ( 0.024). The CT score 1 for patients with elevated PCT peaked at day 40 following the onset of symptoms then decreased gradually, while their total CT score was relatively stable. PCT level was shown as an independent risk factor of in-hospital mortality among COVID-19 patients. Compared with inpatients with normal PCT levels, inpatients with elevated PCT levels had a higher risk for overall mortality and critically severe disease. These findings may provide guidance for improving the prognosis of patients with critically severe COVID-19.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7150/ijms.48396DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7532477PMC
October 2020

Immunodeficiency Disease Spectrum in HIV-Negative Individuals with Talaromycosis.

J Clin Immunol 2021 Jan 30;41(1):221-223. Epub 2020 Sep 30.

Department of Respiratory and Critical Medicine, The Eighth Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-Sen University, No. 3025, Shennan Middle Road, Shenzhen, 518000, Guangdong, China.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10875-020-00869-5DOI Listing
January 2021

An Experiment Study on the Laminar Burning Velocity and Markstein Length of Chlorella Oil/RP-3 Kerosene Blends.

ACS Omega 2020 Sep 7;5(37):23510-23519. Epub 2020 Sep 7.

Liaoning Key Lab of Advanced Test Technology for Aerospace Propulsion System, Shenyang Aerospace University, Shenyang, Liaoning 110136, P.R.China.

Experiments have been carried out in a constant volume chamber to investigate the effects of Chlorella oil addition on the laminar burning velocity and Markstein length of Chlorella oil/RP-3 kerosene blends at an initial pressure of 0.1 MPa and temperature of 450 K over a wide equivalence ratio range from 0.8 to 1.4. The result shows that at equivalence ratios of 0.9 and 1.1, with the increase of Chlorella oil addition, no cellular structure is observed in the flame propagation images. It means that the Chlorella oil addition has little effect on the flame stability under these experimental conditions; however, at an equivalence ratio of 1.3, with the increase of Chlorella oil addition from 0 to 0.5, the flame tends to be stable. It is found that the Markstein length of Chlorella oil/RP-3 blend decreases with the increase of the equivalence ratio. The blend with 0.5 Chlorella oil addition has a more rapid decrease in Markstein length compared with that of the RP-3 between the equivalence ratio from 1.1 to 1.3. The peak laminar burning velocity of Chlorella oil/RP-3 kerosene blend is obtained at the equivalence ratio of 1.1, and with the increase of Chlorella oil addition from 0 to 0.5, the laminar burning velocity increases about 20%.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsomega.0c00789DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7512445PMC
September 2020