Publications by authors named "Xiaomeng Li"

187 Publications

Risk factors and prediction nomogram model for psychosocial and behavioural problems among children and adolescents during the COVID-19 pandemic: A national multicentre study: Risk Factors of Childhood Psychosocial Problems.

J Affect Disord 2021 Jul 6;294:128-136. Epub 2021 Jul 6.

National Clinical Research Center for Child Health and Disorder, Children's Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, China. Electronic address:

Background: We aimed to explore the risk profiles attributable to psychosocial and behavioural problems during the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. To this end, we created a risk-prediction nomogram model.

Methods: A national multicentre study was conducted through an online questionnaire involving 12,186 children (6-11 years old) and adolescents (12-16 years old). Respondents' psychosocial and behavioural functioning were assessed using the Achenbach Child Behaviour Checklist (CBCL). Data were analysed using STATA software and R-language.

Results: The positive detection rate of psychological problems within Wuhan was greater than that outside Wuhan for schizoid (P = 0.005), and depression (P = 0.030) in children, and for somatic complaints (P = 0.048), immaturity (P = 0.023), and delinquent behaviour (P = 0.046) in adolescents. After graded multivariable adjustment, seven factors associated with psychological problems in children and adolescents outside Wuhan were parent-child conflict (odds ratio (OR): 4.94, 95% confidence interval (95% CI): 4.27-5.72), sleep problems (OR: 4.05, 95% CI: 3.77-4.36), online study time (OR: 0.41, 95% CI: 0.37-0.47), physical activity time (OR: 0.510, 95% CI: 0.44-0.59), number of close friends (OR: 0.51, 95% CI: 0.44-0.6), time spent playing videogames (OR: 2.26, 95% CI: 1.90-2.69) and eating disorders (OR: 2.71, 95% CI: 2.35-3.11) (all P < 0.001). Contrastingly, within Wuhan, only the first four factors, namely, parent-child conflict (5.95, 2.82-12.57), sleep problems (4.47, 3.06-6.54), online study time (0.37, 0.22-0.64), and physical activity time (0.42, 0.22-0.80) were identified (all P < 0.01). Accordingly, nomogram models were created with significant attributes and had decent prediction performance with C-indexes over 80%.

Limitation: A cross-sectional study and self-reported measures.

Conclusions: Besides the four significant risk factors within and outside Wuhan, the three additional factors outside Wuhan deserve special attention. The prediction nomogram models constructed in this study have important clinical and public health implications for psychosocial and behavioural assessment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2021.06.077DOI Listing
July 2021

Rosmanol induces breast cancer cells apoptosis by regulating PI3K/AKT and STAT3/JAK2 signaling pathways.

Oncol Lett 2021 Aug 1;22(2):631. Epub 2021 Jul 1.

The Key Laboratory of Molecular Epigenetics of Ministry of Education (MOE), School of Life Sciences, Northeast Normal University, Changchun, Jilin 130024, P.R. China.

Breast cancer is one of the most frequently diagnosed cancers amongst women; however, there is currently no effective treatment. Natural compounds are considered to contribute to cancer prevention and have a pivotal role in modulating apoptosis. Rosmanol is a phenolic diterpene compound with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. In the present study, the effects of Rosmanol on breast cancer cell proliferation/apoptosis were investigated, and it was demonstrated that it inhibited the proliferation of MCF-7 and MDA-MB 231 cells but did not have a significant effect on normal human breast MCF-10A cells. In addition, the apoptotic process was accelerated by Rosmanol, through mitochondrial pathways and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production caused by DNA damage, which function further demonstrated by the attenuation and addition of the ROS inhibitor, N-acetyl-cysteine. It was also demonstrated that Rosmanol accelerated cell apoptosis, and arrested breast cancer cells in the S phase. Moreover, Rosmanol inhibited proliferation and promoted apoptosis of cancer cells via the inhibition of ERK and STAT3 signals, attributable to the increase in p-p38, the overexpression of protein inhibitor of activated STAT3, and the decrease in PI3K/AKT, ERK and JAK2/STAT3.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3892/ol.2021.12892DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8258625PMC
August 2021

Pharmacodynamic substances in Salvia miltiorrhiza for prevention and treatment of hyperlipidemia and coronary heart disease based on lipidomics technology and network pharmacology analysis.

Biomed Pharmacother 2021 Jul 2;141:111846. Epub 2021 Jul 2.

School of Chinese Materia Medica, Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Tianjin 301617, PR China. Electronic address:

In this study, untargeted lipidomics based on UPLC-Q/TOF-MS, network pharmacology and atomic force microscopy were used to explore the common biomarkers of hyperlipidemia and coronary heart disease, the therapeutic mechanism of the main components of Salvia miltiorrhiza as well as the action mechanism of key lipids. Firstly, the serum samples of 30 healthy people, 30 patients with coronary heart disease and 30 patients with hyperlipidemia were analyzed by using lipidomics technology to obtain biomarkers which can be used to link hyperlipidemia and coronary heart disease and to find potential targets; then, the key components and core targets of Salvia miltiorrhiza intervention in hyperlipidemia and coronary heart disease were analyzed by network pharmacology, the results were verified by atomic force microscopy. It showed that SMS2 might be the key target. And through network pharmacology and atomic force microscope analysis, it can be inferred that salvianolic acid A can combine with SMS2 to play a therapeutic role.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biopha.2021.111846DOI Listing
July 2021

3D Electrospun Nanofiber-Based Scaffolds: From Preparations and Properties to Tissue Regeneration Applications.

Stem Cells Int 2021 17;2021:8790143. Epub 2021 Jun 17.

School of Mechanics and Safety Engineering, Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou 450001, China.

Electrospun nanofibers have been frequently used for tissue engineering due to their morphological similarities with the extracellular matrix (ECM) and tunable chemical and physical properties for regulating cell behaviors and functions. However, most of the existing electrospun nanofibers have a closely packed two-dimensional (2D) membrane with the intrinsic shortcomings of limited cellular infiltration, restricted nutrition diffusion, and unsatisfied thickness. Three-dimensional (3D) electrospun nanofiber-based scaffolds can provide stem cells with 3D microenvironments and biomimetic fibrous structures. Thus, they have been demonstrated to be good candidates for repair of different tissues. This review summarizes the recent developments in 3D electrospun nanofiber-based scaffolds (ENF-S) for tissue engineering. Three types of 3D ENF-S fabricated using different approaches classified into electrospun nanofiber 3D scaffolds, electrospun nanofiber/hydrogel composite 3D scaffolds, and electrospun nanofiber/porous matrix composite 3D scaffolds are discussed. New functions for these 3D ENF-S and properties, such as facilitated cell infiltration, 3D fibrous architecture, enhanced mechanical properties, and tunable degradability, meeting the requirements of tissue engineering scaffolds were discovered. The applications of 3D ENF-S in cartilage, bone, tendon, ligament, skeletal muscle, nerve, and cardiac tissue regeneration are then presented with a discussion of current challenges and future directions. Finally, we give summaries and future perspectives of 3D ENF-S in tissue engineering and clinical transformation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2021/8790143DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8225450PMC
June 2021

Lung but not brain cancer cell malignancy inhibited by commonly used anesthetic propofol during surgery: Implication of reducing cancer recurrence risk.

J Adv Res 2021 07 6;31:1-12. Epub 2021 Jan 6.

Division of Anaesthetics, Pain Medicine and Intensive Care, Department of Surgery and Cancer, Faculty of Medicine, Imperial College London, Chelsea & Westminster Hospital, London SW10 9NH, United Kingdom.

Introduction: Intravenous anesthesia with propofol was reported to improve cancer surgical outcomes when compared with inhalational anesthesia. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms largely remain unknown.

Objectives: The anti-tumor effects of propofol and the possible underlying mechanism including altered metabolic and signaling pathways were studied in the current study.

Methods: The cell viability, proliferation, migration, and invasion of cancer cells were analyzed with CCK-8, Ki-67 staining, wound healing, and Transwell assay, respectively. The protein changes were analyzed with Western blot and immunofluorescent staining. The metabolomics alteration was studied with H-NMR spectroscopy. The gene expression regulations were analyzed with PCR gene array and qRT-PCR experiments.

Results: In this study, we found that propofol reduced cell viability and inhibited cell proliferation, migration and invasion of lung cancer cells, but not neuroglioma cells. In lung cancer cells, propofol downregulated glucose transporter 1 (GLUT1), mitochondrial pyruvate carrier 1 (MPC1), p-Akt, p-Erk1/2, and hypoxia- inducible factor 1 alpha (HIF-1 α ) expressions and upregulated pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF) expression. Propofol increased intracellular glutamate and glycine but decreased acetate and formate whilst increased glucose, lactate, glutamine, succinate, pyruvate, arginine, valine, isoleucine, and leucine and glycerol, and decreased acetate, ethanol, isopropanol in the culture media of lung cancer cells. Furthermore, VEGFA, CTBP1, CST7, CTSK, CXCL12, and CXCR4 gene expressions were downregulated, while NR4A3, RB1, NME1, MTSS1, NME4, SYK, APC, and FAT1 were upregulated following the propofol treatment. Consistent with the phenotypical changes, these molecular and metabolic changes were not found in the neuroglioma cells.

Conclusion: Our findings indicated anti-tumor effects of propofol on the lung cancer but not brain cancer, through the regulation of tumor metastasis-related genes, multi-cellular signaling and cellular metabolism.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jare.2020.12.007DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8240101PMC
July 2021

A Combined RNA Signature Predicts Recurrence Risk of Stage I-IIIA Lung Squamous Cell Carcinoma.

Front Genet 2021 14;12:676464. Epub 2021 Jun 14.

Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine Department, Qilu Hospital, Shandong University, Jinan, China.

Objective: Recurrence remains the main cause of the poor prognosis in stage I-IIIA lung squamous cell carcinoma (LUSC) after surgical resection. In the present study, we aimed to identify the long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs), microRNAs (miRNAs), and messenger RNAs (mRNAs) related to the recurrence of stage I-IIIA LUSC. Moreover, we constructed a risk assessment model to predict the recurrence of LUSC patients.

Methods: RNA sequencing data (including miRNAs, lncRNAs, and mRNAs) and relevant clinical information were obtained from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) database. The differentially expressed lncRNAs, miRNAs, and mRNAs were identified using the "DESeq2" package of the R language. Univariate Cox proportional hazards regression analysis and Kaplan-Meier curve were used to identify recurrence-related genes. Stepwise multivariate Cox regression analysis was carried out to establish a risk model for predicting recurrence in the training cohort. Moreover, Kaplan-Meier curves and receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were adopted to examine the predictive performance of the signature in the training cohort, validation cohort, and entire cohort.

Results: Based on the TCGA database, we analyzed the differentially expressed genes (DEGs) among 27 patients with recurrent stage I-IIIA LUSC and 134 patients with non-recurrent stage I-IIIA LUSC, and identified 431 lncRNAs, 36 miRNAs, and 746 mRNAs with different expression levels. Out of these DEGs, the optimal combination of DEGs was finally determined, and a nine-joint RNA molecular signature was constructed for clinical prediction of recurrence, including LINC02683, AC244517.5, LINC02418, LINC01322, AC011468.3, hsa-mir-6825, AC020637.1, AC027117.2, and SERPINB12. The ROC curve proved that the model had good predictive performance in predicting recurrence. The area under the curve (AUC) of the prognostic model for recurrence-free survival (RFS) was 0.989 at 3 years and 0.958 at 5 years (in the training set). The combined RNA signature also revealed good predictive performance in predicting the recurrence in the validation cohort and entire cohort.

Conclusions: In the present study, we constructed a nine-joint RNA molecular signature for recurrence prediction of stage I-IIIA LUSC. Collectively, our findings provided new and valuable clinical evidence for predicting the recurrence and targeted treatment of stage I-IIIA LUSC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fgene.2021.676464DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8236863PMC
June 2021

Synthesis and characterization of carbene derivatives of [email protected] (8)-C and [email protected] (9)-C: exceptional chemical properties induced by strong actinide-carbon cage interaction.

Chem Sci 2020 Dec 21;12(7):2488-2497. Epub 2020 Dec 21.

College of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Soochow University Suzhou Jiangsu 215123 P. R. China

Chemical functionalization of endohedral metallofullerenes (EMFs) is essential for the application of these novel carbon materials. Actinide EMFs, a new EMF family member, have presented unique molecular and electronic structures but their chemical properties remain unexplored. Here, for the first time, we report the chemical functionalization of actinide EMFs, in which the photochemical reaction of [email protected] (8)-C and [email protected] (9)-C with 2-adamantane-2,3'-[3]-diazirine (AdN, ) was systematically investigated. The combined HPLC and MALDI-TOF analyses show that carbene addition by photochemical reaction afforded three isomers of [email protected] (8)-CAd and four isomers of [email protected] (9)-CAd (Ad = adamantylidene), presenting notably higher reactivity than their lanthanide analogs. Among these novel EMF derivatives, [email protected] (8)-CAd(I, II, III) and [email protected] (9)-CAd(I, II, III) were successfully isolated and were characterized by UV-vis-NIR spectroscopy. In particular, the molecular structures of first actinide fullerene derivatives, [email protected] (8)-CAd(I) and [email protected] (9)-CAd(I), were unambiguously determined by single crystal X-ray crystallography, both of which show a [6,6]-open cage structure. In addition, isomerization of [email protected] (8)-CAd(II), [email protected] (8)-CAd(III), [email protected] (9)-CAd(II) and [email protected] (9)-CAd(III) was observed at room temperature. Computational studies suggest that the attached carbon atoms on the cages of both [email protected] (8)-CAd(I) and [email protected] (9)-CAd(I) have the largest negative charges, thus facilitating the electrophilic attack. Furthermore, it reveals that, compared to their lanthanide analogs, [email protected] (8)-C and [email protected] (9)-C have much closer metal-cage distance, increased metal-to-cage charge transfer, and strong metal-cage interactions stemming from the significant contribution of extended Th-5f and U-5f orbitals to the occupied molecular orbitals, all of which give rise to their unusual high reactivity. This study provides first insights into the exceptional chemical properties of actinide endohedral fullerenes, which pave ways for the future functionalization and application of these novel EMF compounds.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d0sc06111eDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8179337PMC
December 2020

[email protected] (7)-C: fullerene cage encapsulating an unsymmetrical U(iv)[double bond, length as m-dash]N[double bond, length as m-dash]U(v) cluster.

Chem Sci 2020 Oct 27;12(1):282-292. Epub 2020 Oct 27.

College of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Soochow University Suzhou Jiangsu 215123 P. R. China

For the first time, an actinide nitride clusterfullerene, [email protected] (7)-C, is synthesized and fully characterized by X-ray single crystallography and multiple spectroscopic methods. [email protected] (7)-C is by far the first endohedral fullerene that violates the well-established tri-metallic nitride template for nitride clusterfullerenes. The novel U[double bond, length as m-dash]N[double bond, length as m-dash]U cluster features two U[double bond, length as m-dash]N bonds with uneven bond distances of 2.058(3) Å and 1.943(3) Å, leading to a rare unsymmetrical structure for the dinuclear nitride motif. The combined experimental and theoretical investigations suggest that the two uranium ions show different oxidation states of +4 and +5. Quantum-chemical investigation further reveals that the f/f population dominantly induces a distortion of the U[double bond, length as m-dash]N[double bond, length as m-dash]U cluster, which leads to the unsymmetrical structure. A comparative study of [email protected] (X = C, N and O) reveals that the U-X interaction in U[double bond, length as m-dash]X[double bond, length as m-dash]U clusters can hardly be seen as being formed by classical multiple bonds, but is more like an anionic central ion X with biased overlaps with the two metal ions, which decrease as the electronegativity of X increases. This study not only demonstrates the unique bonding variety of actinide clusters stabilized by fullerene cages, showing different bonding from that observed for the lanthanide analogs, it also reveals the electronic structure of the U[double bond, length as m-dash]X[double bond, length as m-dash]U clusters (X = C, N and O), which are of fundamental significance to understanding these actinide bonding motifs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d0sc04677aDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8178745PMC
October 2020

Modeling Cone/Cone-Rod Dystrophy Pathology by AAV-Mediated Overexpression of Mutant CRX Protein in the Mouse Retina.

Transl Vis Sci Technol 2021 06;10(7):25

Department of Ophthalmology, Shanghai General Hospital, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai, China.

Purpose: This study aims to evaluate the pathogenesis of cone/cone-rod dystrophy (CoD/CoRD) caused by a cone-rod homeobox (CRX) mutation, which was identified in a Chinese family, through adeno-associated virus (AAV)-mediated overexpression of mutant CRX protein in the mouse retina.

Methods: Comprehensive ophthalmologic examinations were performed for the pedigree members of a Chinese family with CoD/CoRD. Whole exome sequencing and Sanger sequencing were performed to determine the genetic cause of the disease. Furthermore, AAV vectors were used to construct AAV-CRX-mut-HA, which was transfected into mouse photoreceptor cells to clarify the pathogenesis of the mutant CRX.

Results: Fundus photography and optical coherence tomography images displayed features that were consistent with CoD/CoRD, including macular atrophy and photoreceptor layer thinning. Electroretinogram analysis indicated an obvious decrease in photopic responses or both scotopic and photopic responses in affected individuals. A frameshift variant c.611delC (p.S204fs) in CRX was cosegregated with the disease in this family. AAV-CRX-mut-HA that subretinally injected into the C57BL/6 mice generally transfected the outer nuclear layer, leading to the loss of cone and rod photoreceptor cells, abnormal expression of CRX target genes, and a decrease in electroretinogram responses.

Conclusions: AAV-mediated overexpression of CRX[S204fs] in the mouse retina led to a CoRD-like phenotype and showed the possible pathogenesis of the antimorphic CRX mutation.

Translational Relevance: This study provides a modeling method to evaluate the pathogenesis of CoD/CoRD and other inherited retinal dystrophies caused by distinct gain-of-function mutations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1167/tvst.10.7.25DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8237110PMC
June 2021

Extracts as Novel PKM2 Inhibitors for Treatment of Triple Negative Breast Cancer.

Biomed Res Int 2021 26;2021:5514669. Epub 2021 May 26.

The Key Laboratory of Molecular Epigenetics of MOE, Institute of Genetics and Cytology, Northeast Normal University (NENU), Changchun, China.

Pyruvate kinase (PK), a key enzyme that determines glycolytic activity, has been known to support the metabolic phenotype of tumor cells, and specific pyruvate kinase isoform M2 (PKM2) has been reported to fulfill divergent biosynthetic and energetic requirements of cancerous cells. PKM2 is overexpressed in several cancer types and is an emerging drug target for cancer during recent years. Therefore, this study was carried out to identify PKM2 inhibitors from natural products for cancer treatment. Based on the objectives of this study, firstly, plant extract library was established. In order to purify protein for the establishment of enzymatic assay system, pET-28a-HmPKM2 plasmid was transformed to BL21 (DE3) cells for protein expression and purification. After the validation of enzymatic assay system, plant extract library was screened for the identification of inhibitors of PKM2 protein. Out of 51 plant extracts screened, four extracts (leaf, seed, and bark) and bark extracts were found to be inhibitors of PKM2. In the current study, (leaf, seed, and bark) extracts were further evaluated dose dependently against PKM2. These extracts showed different degrees of concentration-dependent inhibition against PKM2 at 90-360 g/ml concentrations. We have also investigated the anticancer potential of these extracts against MDA-MB231 cells and generated dose-response curves for the evaluation of IC values. (bark and seed) extracts significantly halted the growth of MDA-MB231 cells with IC values of 108 g/ml and 33 g/ml, respectively. Literature-based phytochemical analysis of was carried out, and -derived 94 compounds were docked against three binding sites of PKM2 for the identification of PKM2 inhibitors. The results of based screening have unveiled various PKM2 modulators; however, further studies are recommended to validate their PKM2 inhibitory potential via biochemical assay. The results of this study provide novel findings for possible mechanism of action of (bark and seed) extracts against TNBC via PKM2 inhibition suggesting that might be of therapeutic interest for the treatment of TNBC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2021/5514669DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8175167PMC
May 2021

[email protected](6)-C: a highly symmetric fullerene cage stabilized by a single metal ion.

Chem Commun (Camb) 2021 Jul;57(54):6624-6627

College of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, and State Key Laboratory of Radiation Medicine and Protection, Soochow University, Suzhou, Jiangsu 215123, P. R. China.

A novel endohedral metallofullerene (mono-EMF), [email protected](6)-C80, has been successfully synthesized and fully characterized by mass spectrometry, single crystal X-ray diffraction, UV-vis-NIR and Raman spectroscopy and cyclic voltammetry. Single crystal XRD analysis unambiguously assigned the fullerene cage as D5h(6)-C80, the first example in which the highly symmetric cage is stabilized by a single metal ion. The combined experimental and theoretical studies further reveal that the D5h(6)-C80 cage, known only for its stabilization by 6-electron transfer, is stabilized by the 4-electron transfer from the encapsulated Th ion for the first time.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d1cc02339jDOI Listing
July 2021

Downregulation of Prolactin-Induced Protein Promotes Osteogenic Differentiation of Periodontal Ligament Stem Cells.

Med Sci Monit 2021 Jun 7;27:e930610. Epub 2021 Jun 7.

School and Hospital of Stomatology, Cheeloo College of Medicine, Shandong University and Shandong Key Laboratory of Oral Tissue Regeneration and Shandong Engineering Laboratory for Dental Materials and Oral Tissue Regeneration, Jinan, Shandong, China (mainland).

BACKGROUND Periodontal ligament stem cells (PDLSCs) are promising seed cells for bone tissue engineering and periodontal regeneration applications. However, the mechanism underlying the osteogenic differentiation process remains largely unknown. Previous reports showed that prolactin-induced protein (PIP) was upregulated after PDLSCs osteogenic induction. However, few studies have reported on the function of PIP in osteogenic differentiation. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the effect of PIP on osteogenic differentiation of PDLSCs. MATERIAL AND METHODS The expression pattern of PIP during PDLSCs osteogenic differentiation was detected and the effect of each component in the osteogenic induction medium on PIP was also tested by qRT-PCR. Then, the PIP knockdown cells were established using lentivirus. The knockdown efficiency was measured and the proliferation, apoptosis, and osteogenic differentiation ability were examined to determine the functional role of PIP on PDLSCs. RESULTS QRT-PCR showed that PIP was sustainedly upregulated during the osteogenic induction process and the phenomenon was mainly caused by the stimulation of dexamethasone in the induction medium. CCK-8 and flow cytometer showed that knocking down PIP had no influence on proliferation and apoptosis of PDLSCs. ALP staining and activity, Alizarin Red staining, and western blot analysis demonstrated PIP knockdown enhanced the osteogenic differentiation and mineralization of PDLSCs. CONCLUSIONS PIP was upregulated after osteogenic induction; however, PIP knockdown promoted PDLSCs osteogenic differentiation. PIP might be a by-product of osteogenic induction, and downregulating of PIP might be a new target in bone tissue engineering applications.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12659/MSM.930610DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8194291PMC
June 2021

Demonstration of epitaxial growth of strain-relaxed GaN films on graphene/SiC substrates for long wavelength light-emitting diodes.

Light Sci Appl 2021 Jun 3;10(1):117. Epub 2021 Jun 3.

State Key Laboratory of Integrated Optoelectronics, College of Electronic Science and Engineering, Jilin University, Qianjin Street 2699, Changchun, 130012, China.

Strain modulation is crucial for heteroepitaxy such as GaN on foreign substrates. Here, the epitaxy of strain-relaxed GaN films on graphene/SiC substrates by metal-organic chemical vapor deposition is demonstrated. Graphene was directly prepared on SiC substrates by thermal decomposition. Its pre-treatment with nitrogen-plasma can introduce C-N dangling bonds, which provides nucleation sites for subsequent epitaxial growth. The scanning transmission electron microscopy measurements confirm that part of graphene surface was etched by nitrogen-plasma. We study the growth behavior on different areas of graphene surface after pre-treatment, and propose a growth model to explain the epitaxial growth mechanism of GaN films on graphene. Significantly, graphene is found to be effective to reduce the biaxial stress in GaN films and the strain relaxation improves indium-atom incorporation in InGaN/GaN multiple quantum wells (MQWs) active region, which results in the obvious red-shift of light-emitting wavelength of InGaN/GaN MQWs. This work opens up a new way for the fabrication of GaN-based long wavelength light-emitting diodes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41377-021-00560-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8175549PMC
June 2021

Psychosocial and behavioral problems of children and adolescents in the early stage of reopening schools after the COVID-19 pandemic: a national cross-sectional study in China.

Transl Psychiatry 2021 06 3;11(1):342. Epub 2021 Jun 3.

Department of Child Health Care, Children's Hospital, Capital Institute of Pediatrics, Beijing, China.

This study aims to explore the psychosocial and behavioral problems of children and adolescents in the early stage of reopening schools. In this national cross-sectional study, a total of 11072 students from China were naturally divided into two groups based on their schooling status: reopened schools (RS) and home schooling (HS) group. The psychosocial and behavioral functioning were measured by Achenbach Child Behaviour Checklist (CBCL) and compared in these two groups. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were conducted to explore the independent predictors associated with the psychosocial and behavioral problems. Our results showed that the students in the RS group had more adverse behaviors than that of HS group. The RS group had the higher rates of parent-offspring conflict, prolonged homework time, increased sedentary time and sleep problems (all p < 0.001). When separate analyses were conducted in boys and girls, the RS group had the higher scores for (1) overall behavioral problems (p = 0.02 and p = 0.01), internalizing (p = 0.02 and p = 0.02) and externalizing (p = 0.02 and p = 0.004) behaviors in the 6-11 age group; (2) externalizing (p = 0.049 and p = 0.006) behaviors in the 12-16 age group. Multivariable regression showed parent-offspring conflict and increased sedentary time were the most common risk factors, while physical activity and number of close friends were protective factors for behavior problems in RS students (p < 0.01 or 0.05). The present study revealed that students' psychosocial and behavioral problems increased in the early stage of schools reopened unexpectedly. These findings suggest that close attention must be paid and holistic strategies employed in the school reopening process of post-COVID-19 period.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41398-021-01462-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8172553PMC
June 2021

Deep Neural Network with Consistency Regularization of Multi-Output Channels for Improved Tumor Detection and Delineation.

IEEE Trans Med Imaging 2021 May 28;PP. Epub 2021 May 28.

Deep learning is becoming an indispensable tool for imaging applications, such as image segmentation, classification, and detection. In this work, we reformulate a standard deep learning problem into a new neural network architecture with multi-output channels, which reflects different facets of the objective, and apply the deep neural network to improve the performance of image segmentation. By adding one or more interrelated auxiliary-output channels, we impose an effective consistency regularization for the main task of pixelated classification (i.e., image segmentation). Specifically, multi-output-channel consistency regularization is realized by residual learning via additive paths that connect main-output channel and auxiliary-output channels in the network. The method is evaluated on the detection and delineation of lung and liver tumors with public data. The results clearly show that multi-output-channel consistency implemented by residual learning improves the standard deep neural network. The proposed framework is quite broad and should find widespread applications in various deep learning problems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/TMI.2021.3084748DOI Listing
May 2021

Physical exercise increases peripheral brain-derived neurotrophic factors in patients with cognitive impairment: A meta-analysis.

Restor Neurol Neurosci 2021 May 10. Epub 2021 May 10.

Institute of Respiratory and Critical Care, the First Hospital of China Medical University, Shenyang, China.

Background: Physical exercise can improve cognitive dysfunction. Its specific mechanism remains unknown. Recent studies have indicated that elevating or peripherally overexpressing brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF) improve cognitive impairment.

Objective: This meta-analysis aimed to investigate whether physical exercise improves cognitive performance in patients with cognitive dysfunction, such as mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or Alzheimer's disease (AD), by increasing peripheral BDNF.

Methods: PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, and Web of Science were searched up to June 2020 for studies that assayed the changes in peripheral BDNF levels in MCI and AD patients after exercise training.

Results: Peripheral BDNF levels were significantly elevated after a single exercise session (SMD = 0.469, 95% CI: 0.150-0.787, P = 0.004) or regular exercise interventions (SMD = 0.418, 95% CI: 0.105-0.731, P = 0.009). Subgroup analysis showed that only regular aerobic exercise interventions (SMD = 0.543, 95% CI: 0.038-1.049, P = 0.035) and intervention duration of 16 weeks or greater (SMD = 0.443, 95% CI: 0.154 -0.733, P = 0.003) significantly increased peripheral BDNF levels. Only plasma BDNF levels (SMD = 0.365, 95% CI:0.066-0.664, P = 0.017) were significantly increased after exercise interventions.

Conclusions: Acute and chronic physical exercises may improve cognitive impairment by increasing peripheral BDNF levels. Aerobic exercises and a longer duration of exercising increased BDNF levels. These findings also suggest that BDNF may be a suitable biomarker for evaluating the effect of exercise in patients with cognitive impairment, such as AD or MCI.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3233/RNN-201060DOI Listing
May 2021

Aberrant Immunoglobulin G Glycosylation in Multiple Sclerosis.

J Neuroimmune Pharmacol 2021 May 3. Epub 2021 May 3.

Department of Neurosurgery, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora, CO, USA.

A hallmark of the inflammatory response in multiple sclerosis (MS) is the presence of intrathecal Immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies and oligoclonal bands (OCBs). The biological activity of IgGs is modulated by changes in glycosylation. Using multiple immunoassays with common lectins for sialylation and galactosylation, we investigated levels of IgG glycosylation in 28 MS and 37 control sera as well as paired CSF and serum. We demonstrated the presence of significantly lower levels of IgG sialylation in MS CSF compared to paired serum. Further, we showed that in MS there was no correlation between sialylated IgG and total IgG antibodies, or between sialylated IgG in CSF and serum. ELISA with native IgG antibodies showed significantly higher levels of sialylated and galactosylated IgG in MS compared to other neurological disorders and normal healthy controls. We conclude that lower levels of sialylated intrathecal IgG and higher levels of serum IgG galactosylation in MS may play significant role in disease pathogenesis. The unique IgG glycosylation profiles suggest a complexed nature of the IgG antibodies which may influence its effector functions in MS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11481-021-09996-1DOI Listing
May 2021

Rapid Detection of Using Multiple Cross Displacement Amplification Combined With Nanoparticles-Based Lateral Flow.

Front Cell Infect Microbiol 2021 13;11:622402. Epub 2021 Apr 13.

Department of Respiratory Medicine, Zhejiang Provincial People's Hospital, People's Hospital of Hangzhou Medical College, Hangzhou, China.

is an opportunistic, ubiquitous, saprophytic mold which can cause infection in the lungs, nose, eyes, brain, and bones in humans, especially in immunocompromised patients. However, it is difficult to diagnose infection quickly. Here, we introduce a new detection method, namely multiple cross displacement amplification (MCDA) combined with nanoparticle-based lateral flow biosensor (LFB) (MCDA-LFB), which was proved to be fast, reliable, and simple for detecting . We designed a set of 10 primers targeting the gene annexin ANXC4 of . The best MCDA condition is 66 °C for 35 min. The minimum concentration that can be detected by this method was 10 fg. In the case of 100 sputum samples, 20 (20%) and 15 (15%) samples were positive by MCDA-LFB and PCR method, respectively. MCDA-LFB and traditional culture method showed the same results. Compared with the culture method, the diagnostic accuracy of MCDA-LFB can reach 100%. It showed that the MCDA-LFB method has better detection ability than the PCR method. We found that the whole process could be controlled within 60 min including the preparation of DNA (20 min), MCDA reaction (35 min) and results reporting (2 min). These results show that this assay is suitable for the rapid, sensitive and specific detection of in clinical samples.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fcimb.2021.622402DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8076636PMC
July 2021

A non-isolated pentagon rule C cage stabilized by a stretched ScN cluster.

Chem Commun (Camb) 2021 Apr;57(34):4150-4153

College of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, and State Key Laboratory of Radiation Medicine and Protection, Soochow University, Suzhou, Jiangsu 215123, P. R. China.

A novel cluster fullerene, [email protected](39 663)-C82, has been synthesized and characterized. Crystallograpic charaterization unambiguously determines the non-IPR cage structure of Cs(39 663)-C82. Structural analyses further reveal that the Sc3N cluster is notably stretched to facilitate the interaction with the non-IPR fullerene cage.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d1cc00328cDOI Listing
April 2021

Rotation-oriented Collaborative Self-supervised Learning for Retinal Disease Diagnosis.

IEEE Trans Med Imaging 2021 Apr 23;PP. Epub 2021 Apr 23.

The automatic diagnosis of various conventional ophthalmic diseases from fundus images is important in clinical practice. However, developing such automatic solutions is challenging due to the requirement of a large amount of training data and the expensive annotations for medical images. This paper presents a novel self-supervised learning framework for retinal disease diagnosis to reduce the annotation efforts by learning the visual features from the unlabeled images. To achieve this, we present a rotation-oriented collaborative method that explores rotation-related and rotation-invariant features, which capture discriminative structures from fundus images and also explore the invariant property used for retinal disease classification. We evaluate the proposed method on two public benchmark datasets for retinal disease classification. The experimental results demonstrate that our method outperforms other self-supervised feature learning methods (around 4.2% area under the curve (AUC)). With a large amount of unlabeled data available, our method can surpass the supervised baseline for pathologic myopia (PM) and is very close to the supervised baseline for age-related macular degeneration (AMD), showing the potential benefit of our method in clinical practice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/TMI.2021.3075244DOI Listing
April 2021

High Chromosomal Stability and Immortalized Totipotency Characterize Long-Term Tissue Cultures of Chinese Ginseng ().

Genes (Basel) 2021 03 31;12(4). Epub 2021 Mar 31.

Ministry of Education Key Laboratory for Biodiversity Science and Ecological Engineering, School of Life Sciences, Fudan University, Shanghai 200438, China.

Chinese ginseng ( C. A. Meyer) is a highly cherished traditional Chinese medicine, with several confirmed medical effects and many more asserted health-boosting functions. Somatic chromosomal instability (CIN) is a hallmark of many types of human cancers and also related to other pathogenic conditions such as miscarriages and intellectual disabilities, hence, the study of this phenomenon is of wide scientific and translational medical significance. CIN also ubiquitously occurs in cultured plant cells, and is implicated as a major cause of the rapid decline/loss of totipotency with culture duration, which represents a major hindrance to the application of transgenic technologies in crop improvement. Here, we report two salient features of long-term cultured callus cells of ginseng, i.e., high chromosomal stability and virtually immortalized totipotency. Specifically, we document that our callus of ginseng, which has been subcultured for 12 consecutive years, remained highly stable at the chromosomal level and showed little decline in totipotency. We show that these remarkable features of cultured ginseng cells are likely relevant to the robust homeostasis of the transcriptional expression of specific genes (i.e., genes related to tissue totipotency and chromosomal stability) implicated in the manifestation of these two complex phenotypes. To our knowledge, these two properties of ginseng have not been observed in any animals (with respect to somatic chromosomal stability) and other plants. We posit that further exploration of the molecular mechanisms underlying these unique properties of ginseng, especially somatic chromosomal stability in protracted culture duration, may provide novel clues to the mechanistic understanding of the occurrence of CIN in human disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/genes12040514DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8067114PMC
March 2021

Prevalence and genomic investigation of Salmonella isolates recovered from animal food-chain in Xinjiang, China.

Food Res Int 2021 04 5;142:110198. Epub 2021 Feb 5.

Department of Veterinary Medicine & Institute of Preventive Veterinary Sciences, Zhejiang University College of Animal Sciences, Hangzhou, China; Zhejiang Provincial Key Laboratory of Preventive Veterinary Medicine, Hangzhou, China; State Key Laboratory for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases, National Clinical Research Center for Infectious Diseases, National Medical Center for Infectious Diseases, The First Affiliated Hospital, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China; Hainan Institute of Zhejiang University, Sanya, China. Electronic address:

Salmonella is a major foodborne pathogen worldwide, causing serious cases of morbidity and mortality due to the consumption of contaminated foods. Animal-borne foods were considered the main source of transferring Salmonella to humans; however, route surveillance by genomic platforms along the food-chain is limited in China. Here, we proceeded to the application of whole genome sequencing in the epidemiological analysis of Salmonella isolated along the food-chain in Xinjiang, China. A total of 2408 samples were collected from farms, slaughterhouses, and markets, and subjected to the isolation of Salmonella strains. 314 (13.04%) of the samples were positive for Salmonella. Phenotypic antimicrobial resistance was conducted by the broth dilution method using 14 antimicrobial agents belonging to ten classes for all 314 isolates. A selection of representative 103 isolates was subjected to whole-genome sequencing for understanding the Salmonella diversity, including serovars, antimicrobial and virulence genes, plasmid types, multi-locus sequence types, and allelic types. We found that S. Agona was the dominant serovar and O:4(B) was the dominant serogroup. The dominant genotype was ST13 and each serovar has a unique MLST pattern. Plasmids prediction reported Col(MGD2)_1 and Col(Ye4449)_1 as the dominant plasmids, in addition to the detection of IncFII(S)_1 and IncFIB(S)_1 carried by all S. Enteritidis isolates. Importantly, virulence genes prediction showed the presence of cdtB gene encoding typhoid toxins, spv genes, and pef gene cluster encoding fimbriae in the genomes of S. Indiana and S. Enteritidis. Phenotypic antimicrobial resistance identified 92.04% of the sampled isolates as multi-drug resistance (MDR), with high resistance to tetracycline (78.03%; 245/314), amoxicillin/ clavulanic acid (75.80%; 238/314), and ampicillin (70.70%; 222/314). Together, we firstly reported the prevalence of MDR Salmonella isolates harboring critical virulence factors transmission via animal-borne food-chain in Xinjiang, hence route surveillance by whole-genome sequencing platform could facilitate recognition and project early warning for the emerging MDR clones along the food-chain.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2021.110198DOI Listing
April 2021

Add-On Chinese Medicine for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (ACCORD): A Retrospective Cohort Study of Hospital Registries.

Am J Chin Med 2021 5;49(3):543-575. Epub 2021 Mar 5.

Hepatic Disease Institute, Hubei Key Laboratory of Theoretical and Applied, Research of Liver and Kidney in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Hubei Provincial Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Wuhan 430061, P. R. China.

Chinese medicine (CM) was extensively used to treat COVID-19 in China. We aimed to evaluate the real-world effectiveness of add-on semi-individualized CM during the outbreak. A retrospective cohort of 1788 adult confirmed COVID-19 patients were recruited from 2235 consecutive linked records retrieved from five hospitals in Wuhan during 15 January to 13 March 2020. The mortality of add-on semi-individualized CM users and non-users was compared by inverse probability weighted hazard ratio (HR) and by propensity score matching. Change of biomarkers was compared between groups, and the frequency of CMs used was analyzed. Subgroup analysis was performed to stratify disease severity and dose of CM exposure. The crude mortality was 3.8% in the semi-individualized CM user group and 17.0% among the non-users. Add-on CM was associated with a mortality reduction of 58% (HR = 0.42, 95% CI: 0.23 to 0.77, [Formula: see text] = 0.005) among all COVID-19 cases and 66% (HR = 0.34, 95% CI: 0.15 to 0.76, [Formula: see text] = 0.009) among severe/critical COVID-19 cases demonstrating dose-dependent response, after inversely weighted with propensity score. The result was robust in various stratified, weighted, matched, adjusted and sensitivity analyses. Severe/critical patients that received add-on CM had a trend of stabilized D-dimer level after 3-7 days of admission when compared to baseline. Immunomodulating and anti-asthmatic CMs were most used. Add-on semi-individualized CM was associated with significantly reduced mortality, especially among severe/critical cases. Chinese medicine could be considered as an add-on regimen for trial use.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1142/S0192415X21500257DOI Listing
April 2021

A Five Immune-Related lncRNA Signature as a Prognostic Target for Glioblastoma.

Front Mol Biosci 2021 16;8:632837. Epub 2021 Feb 16.

Department of Neurosurgery, Qilu Hospital of Shandong University, Jinan, China.

A variety of regulatory approaches including immune modulation have been explored as approaches to either eradicate antitumor response or induce suppressive mechanism in the glioblastoma microenvironment. Thus, the study of immune-related long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) signature is of great value in the diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis of glioblastoma. Glioblastoma samples with lncRNA sequencing and corresponding clinical data were acquired from the Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) database. Immune-lncRNAs co-expression networks were built to identify immune-related lncRNAs via Pearson correlation. Based on the median risk score acquired in the training set, we divided the samples into high- and low-risk groups and demonstrate the survival prediction ability of the immune-related lncRNA signature. Both principal component analysis (PCA) and gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) were used for immune state analysis. A cohort of 151 glioblastoma samples and 730 immune-related genes were acquired in this study. A five immune-related lncRNA signature (, and ) was identified. Compared with patients in the high-risk group, patients in the low-risk group showed a longer overall survival (OS) in the training, validation, and entire TCGA set ( = 1.931e-05, = 1.706e-02, and = 3.397e-06, respectively). Additionally, the survival prediction ability of this lncRNA signature was independent of known clinical factors and molecular features. The area under the ROC curve (AUC) and stratified analyses were further performed to verify its optimal survival predictive potency. Of note, the high-and low-risk groups exhibited significantly distinct immune state according to the PCA and GSEA analyses. Our study proposes that a five immune-related lncRNA signature can be utilized as a latent indicator of prognosis and potential therapeutic approach for glioblastoma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmolb.2021.632837DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7921698PMC
February 2021

Effect of muscle training on dyspnea in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.

Medicine (Baltimore) 2021 Mar;100(9):e24930

Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital.

Background: Rehabilitation training is beneficial for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). This study was aimed at evaluating the efficacy of muscle training on dyspnea.

Methods: We used 5 common databases for conducting a meta-analysis included PubMed, the Cochrane Library, Science Direct, Web of Science and Clinical Trials.gov, and eligible randomized controlled trials (RCTs) were included. The main results of include studies were dyspnea of patients who had a clinical diagnosis of COPD measured using Borg score and Medical Research Council (MRC) or modified Medical Research Council (mMRC) scale as the criteria before and after intervention. The intervention measures included respiratory or expiratory muscles or upper limb (UL) or lower limb (LL) training. The mean differences (MD) with the 95% confidence interval (CI) were considered for summary statistics. We also assessed risk of bias using the Cochrane collaboration's tool, and the value of I2 was applied to evaluate the heterogeneity of the trials.

Results: Fourteen RCTs with 18 interventions (n = 860 participants) were included. Muscle training significantly improved dyspnea during exercise and in the daily life of patients with COPD (MD, 95% CI: -0.58, -0.84 to -0.32, P  < .0001 and -0.44, -0.65 to -0.24, P  < .0001, respectively). In the subgroup analyses, the trials that used respiratory muscle and UL trainings significantly improved dyspnea during exercise (MD, 95% CI: -0.72, -1.13 to -0.31, P = .0005 and -0.53, -0.91 to -0.15, P = .007, respectively). The studies also showed that the participants in the rehabilitation group, who received respiratory muscle and UL trainings, had a significant improvement of dyspnea in daily life (MD, 95% CI: -0.38, -0.67 to -0.09, P = .01 and -0.51, -0.80 to -0.22, P = .0007, respectively).

Conclusion: There were some limitations that most of the subjects in this study were patients with moderate to severe COPD and were male, and the training period and duration were different. The analyses revealed that respiratory muscle and UL trainings can improve dyspnea in patients with COPD during exercise and in daily life.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/MD.0000000000024930DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7939163PMC
March 2021

Does Psychological Capital Mediate Between Workplace Violence and Depressive Symptoms Among Doctors and Nurses in Chinese General Hospitals?

Psychol Res Behav Manag 2021 19;14:199-206. Epub 2021 Feb 19.

Department of Health Service Management, China Medical University, Shenyang, Liaoning, 110122, People's Republic of China.

Background: Depressive symptoms related to workplace violence (WPV) have been studied and are the main causes of lower psychological and physical well-being and work motivation. Our study aims to examine the prevalence of depressive symptoms and to explore whether psychological capital (PsyCap) mediates the effect of WPV on depressive symptoms in doctors and nurses.

Methods: Participants were recruited from general hospitals in Liaoning, China in 2018. Out of 1218 participants, 1062 (87.2%) completed self-reported questionnaires. Depressive symptoms, WPV and PsyCap were measured by Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D), Workplace Violence Scale (WVS) and Psychological Capital Questionnaire (PCQ), respectively. The related factors of depressive symptoms were investigated by using hierarchical multiple regression in both doctors and nurses.

Results: The mean scores of depressive symptoms were 23.09 ± 8.38 in doctors and 22.33 ± 8.95 in nurses, and there was no significant difference between the scores of these two groups. WPV was positively associated with depressive symptoms (doctors: =0.349, <0.001; nurses: =0.317, <0.001) while PsyCap was negatively associated with depressive symptoms (doctors: =-0.101, <0.001; nurses: =-0.230, <0.001). In addition, PsyCap acted as a mediating role between WPV and depressive symptoms in both doctors and nurses.

Conclusion: Both doctors and nurses had serious depressive symptoms. WPV could aggravate depressive symptoms, while PsyCap could aggravate against depressive symptoms. When PsyCap acted as a mediator, WPV had a negative impact on PsyCap, which could increase doctors' and nurses' depressive symptoms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2147/PRBM.S293843DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7903944PMC
February 2021

Global guidance network for breast lesion segmentation in ultrasound images.

Med Image Anal 2021 05 4;70:101989. Epub 2021 Feb 4.

Department of Computer Science and Engineering, The Chinese University of Hong Kong. Shenzhen Key Laboratory of Virtual Reality and Human Interaction Technology, Shenzhen Institutes of Advanced Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China.

Automatic breast lesion segmentation in ultrasound helps to diagnose breast cancer, which is one of the dreadful diseases that affect women globally. Segmenting breast regions accurately from ultrasound image is a challenging task due to the inherent speckle artifacts, blurry breast lesion boundaries, and inhomogeneous intensity distributions inside the breast lesion regions. Recently, convolutional neural networks (CNNs) have demonstrated remarkable results in medical image segmentation tasks. However, the convolutional operations in a CNN often focus on local regions, which suffer from limited capabilities in capturing long-range dependencies of the input ultrasound image, resulting in degraded breast lesion segmentation accuracy. In this paper, we develop a deep convolutional neural network equipped with a global guidance block (GGB) and breast lesion boundary detection (BD) modules for boosting the breast ultrasound lesion segmentation. The GGB utilizes the multi-layer integrated feature map as a guidance information to learn the long-range non-local dependencies from both spatial and channel domains. The BD modules learn additional breast lesion boundary map to enhance the boundary quality of a segmentation result refinement. Experimental results on a public dataset and a collected dataset show that our network outperforms other medical image segmentation methods and the recent semantic segmentation methods on breast ultrasound lesion segmentation. Moreover, we also show the application of our network on the ultrasound prostate segmentation, in which our method better identifies prostate regions than state-of-the-art networks.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.media.2021.101989DOI Listing
May 2021

A rapid screening classifier for diagnosing COVID-19.

Int J Biol Sci 2021 9;17(2):539-548. Epub 2021 Jan 9.

Key Laboratory of Respiratory Disease of Zhejiang Province, Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, Second Affiliated Hospital of Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China.

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has caused a global pandemic. A classifier combining chest X-ray (CXR) with clinical features may serve as a rapid screening approach. The study included 512 patients with COVID-19 and 106 with influenza A/B pneumonia. A deep neural network (DNN) was applied, and deep features derived from CXR and clinical findings formed fused features for diagnosis prediction. The clinical features of COVID-19 and influenza showed different patterns. Patients with COVID-19 experienced less fever, more diarrhea, and more salient hypercoagulability. Classifiers constructed using the clinical features or CXR had an area under the receiver operating curve (AUC) of 0.909 and 0.919, respectively. The diagnostic efficacy of the classifier combining the clinical features and CXR was dramatically improved and the AUC was 0.952 with 91.5% sensitivity and 81.2% specificity. Moreover, combined classifier was functional in both severe and non-serve COVID-19, with an AUC of 0.971 with 96.9% sensitivity in non-severe cases, which was on par with the computed tomography (CT)-based classifier, but had relatively inferior efficacy in severe cases compared to CT. In extension, we performed a reader study involving three experienced pulmonary physicians, artificial intelligence (AI) system demonstrated superiority in turn-around time and diagnostic accuracy compared with experienced pulmonary physicians. The classifier constructed using clinical and CXR features is efficient, economical, and radiation safe for distinguishing COVID-19 from influenza A/B pneumonia, serving as an ideal rapid screening tool during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7150/ijbs.53982DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7893593PMC
March 2021

CBP/P300 Inhibitors Mitigate Radiation-Induced GI Syndrome by Promoting Intestinal Stem Cell-Mediated Crypt Regeneration.

Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 2021 Jul 3;110(4):1210-1221. Epub 2021 Feb 3.

Institute of Radiation Medicine, Shanghai Medical College, Fudan University, Shanghai, China; Cancer Institute, Fudan University Shanghai Cancer Center, Fudan University, Shanghai, China. Electronic address:

Purpose: Radiation-induced gastrointestinal syndrome (RIGS) is currently the main cause of death for people exposed to a high dose of irradiation during nuclear incidents, and there is currently no approved effective therapy. Here, we found that CBP/P300 inhibitors, with high efficacy and low toxicity, might be promising radiation mitigators that can cure RIGS.

Methods And Materials: Ex vivo 3D organoid cultures derived from mouse jejunum and human ileum and colon were used to examine the radio-mitigative effects of CBP/P300 inhibitors. The radio-mitigative effect was evaluated by quantifying the survival rate and size of organoids after radiation. SGC-CBP30 (50 mg/kg body weight), an inhibitor of CBP/P300, was intraperitoneally injected into C57B/6J mice 24 hours after subtotal-body irradiation or whole-body irradiation. The regenerated crypts and animal survival were determined by microcolony assay and the Kaplan-Meier method, respectively. Lgr5-lacZ mice were used to evaluate the survival of intestinal stem cells after treatments.

Results: We found that CBP/P300 inhibitors were effective mitigators that could be used to treat RIGS. CBP/P300 inhibition promoted the regeneration of intestinal organoids in vitro and of crypts in vivo. Remarkably, the administration of CBP/P300 inhibitors to mice 24 hours after lethal irradiation promoted Lgr5 intestinal stem cell and crypt recovery, resulting in improved mouse survival. Moreover, our data show that CBP/P300 inhibitors rescued irradiated mice from RIGS by delaying intestinal epithelial cell cycle progression after radiation.

Conclusions: These data demonstrate that CBP/P300 inhibitors are effective medical countermeasures to mitigate gastrointestinal toxicity from radiation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijrobp.2021.01.046DOI Listing
July 2021

The Potential Roles of Exosomes in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.

Front Med (Lausanne) 2020 14;7:618506. Epub 2021 Jan 14.

Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine Department, Qilu Hospital, Shandong University, Jinan, China.

Currently, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is one of the most common chronic lung diseases. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is characterized by progressive loss of lung function due to chronic inflammatory responses in the lungs caused by repeated exposure to harmful environmental stimuli. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a persistent disease, with an estimated 384 million people worldwide living with COPD. It is listed as the third leading cause of death. Exosomes contain various components, such as lipids, microRNAs (miRNAs), long non-coding RNAs(lncRNAs), and proteins. They are essential mediators of intercellular communication and can regulate the biological properties of target cells. With the deepening of exosome research, it is found that exosomes are strictly related to the occurrence and development of COPD. Therefore, this review aims to highlight the unique role of immune-cell-derived exosomes in disease through complex interactions and their potentials as potential biomarkers new types of COPD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmed.2020.618506DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7841048PMC
January 2021
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