Publications by authors named "Xin Li"

6,847 Publications

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[Application of Automated Machine Learning Based on Radiomics Features of T2WI and RS-EPI DWI to Predict Preoperative T Staging of Rectal Cancer].

Sichuan Da Xue Xue Bao Yi Xue Ban 2021 Jul;52(4):698-705

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

Objective: To explore the radiomics features of T2 weighted image (T2WI) and readout-segmented echo-planar imaging (RS-EPI) plus difusion-weighted imaging (DWI), to develop an automated mahchine-learning model based on the said radiomics features, and to test the value of this model in predicting preoperative T staging of rectal cancer.

Methods: The study retrospectively reviewed 131 patients who were diagnosed with rectal cancer confirmed by the pathology results of their surgical specimens at West China Hospital of Sichuan University between October, 2017 and December, 2018. In addition, these patients had preoperative rectal MRI. Tumor regions from preoperative MRI were manually segmented by radiologists with the ITK-SNAP software from T2WI and RS-EPI DWI images. PyRadiomics was used to extract 200 features-100 from T2WI and 100 from the apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) calculated from the RS-EPI DWI. MWMOTE and NEATER were used to resample and balance the dataset, and 13 cases of T stage simulation cases were added. The overall dataset was divided into a training set (111 cases) and a test set (37 cases) by a ratio of 3∶1. Tree-based Pipeline Optimization Tool (TPOT) was applied on the training set to optimize model parameters and to select the most important radiomics features for modeling. Five independent T stage models were developed accordingly. Accuracy and the area under the curve ( ) of receiver operating characteristic (ROC) were used to pick out the optimal model, which was then applied on the training set and the original dataset to predict the T stage of rectal cancer.

Results: The performance of the the five T staging models recommended by automated machine learning were as follows: The accuracy for the training set ranged from 0.802 to 0.838, sensitivity, from 0.762 to 0.825, specificity, from 0.833 to 0.896, , from 0.841 to 0.893, and average precision (AP) from 0.870 to 0.901. After comparison, an optimal model was picked out, with sensitivity, specificity and for the training set reaching 0.810, 0.875, and 0.893, respectively. The sensitivity, specificity and for the test set were 0.810, 0.813, and 0.810, respectively. The sensitivity, specificity and for the original dataset were 0.810, 0.830, and 0.860, respectively.

Conclusion: Based on the radiomics data of T2WI and RS-EPI DWI, the model established by automated machine learning showed a fairly high accuracy in predicting rectal cancer T stage.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12182/20210460201DOI Listing
July 2021

Effects of Ethnicity and Spiritual Intelligence in the Relationship Between Awe and Life Satisfaction Among Chinese Primary School Teachers.

Front Psychol 2021 12;12:673832. Epub 2021 Jul 12.

School of Psychology, Inner Mongolia Normal University, Hohhot, China.

Based on the broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions, this study explored the mediating effect of spiritual intelligence between awe and life satisfaction among Chinese primary school teachers and whether this effect was moderated by ethnicity. Participants comprised 569 teachers from 24 primary schools in southwestern China, where many of the ethnic minority groups of China reside. Awe and spiritual intelligence were found to positively predict life satisfaction among primary school teachers, while awe also indirectly influenced life satisfaction through the partial mediation of spiritual intelligence. Ethnicity was also found to moderate the relation between awe and life satisfaction, i.e., when compared with the Han teachers, there is a more significant and positive relation between awe and life satisfaction in ethnic minority teachers. These findings not only indicate the critical role of awe in promoting life satisfaction of primary school teachers but also especially show that awe embodied in the traditional cultural activities makes it easier to breed life satisfaction in ethnic minority teachers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.673832DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8311238PMC
July 2021

Progressive Brain Degeneration From Subjective Cognitive Decline to Amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment: Evidence From Large-Scale Anatomical Connection Classification Analysis.

Front Aging Neurosci 2021 12;13:687530. Epub 2021 Jul 12.

State Key Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience and Learning and IDG/McGovern Institute for Brain Research, Beijing Normal University, Beijing, China.

People with subjective cognitive decline (SCD) and amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) are both at high risk for Alzheimer's disease (AD). Behaviorally, both SCD and aMCI have subjective reports of cognitive decline, but the latter suffers a more severe objective cognitive impairment than the former. However, it remains unclear how the brain develops from SCD to aMCI. In the current study, we aimed to investigate the topological characteristics of the white matter (WM) network that can successfully identify individuals with SCD or aMCI from healthy control (HC) and to describe the relationship of pathological changes between these two stages. To this end, three groups were recruited, including 22 SCD, 22 aMCI, and 22 healthy control (HC) subjects. We constructed WM network for each subject and compared large-scale topological organization between groups at both network and nodal levels. At the network level, the combined network indexes had the best performance in discriminating aMCI from HC. However, no indexes at the network level can significantly identify SCD from HC. These results suggested that aMCI but not SCD was associated with anatomical impairments at the network level. At the nodal level, we found that the short-path length can best differentiate between aMCI and HC subjects, whereas the global efficiency has the best performance in differentiating between SCD and HC subjects, suggesting that both SCD and aMCI had significant functional integration alteration compared to HC subjects. These results converged on the idea that the neural degeneration from SCD to aMCI follows a gradual process, from abnormalities at the nodal level to those at both nodal and network levels.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fnagi.2021.687530DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8312851PMC
July 2021

Predictive value of contrast-enhanced ultrasound combined with conventional ultrasound in solid renal parenchymal lesions.

Br J Radiol 2021 Jul 28:20210518. Epub 2021 Jul 28.

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

Objective: This study aimed to develop a model to predict the risk of malignancy in solid renal parenchymal lesions based on the imaging features of combined conventional and contrast-enhanced ultrasound (CEUS).

Methods: A retrospective review was performed among patients with focal solid renal parenchymal lesions on ultrasound images. Ultrasound features were characterized by two experienced radiologists independently. A multiple logistic regression analysis was performed to determine the most relevant features and to estimate the risk of malignancy. Scoring and counting methods were developed based on the most relevant features. The diagnostic performance was evaluated by the sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value and area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC).

Results: A total of 519 renal lesions were included in this study. The conventional ultrasound features of diameter, echogenicity, hypoechoic rim and the CEUS feature of heterogeneity were identified as the most relevant features for prediction of malignancy. The sensitivity and specificity for the logistic regression model, the scoring method and the counting method were 95.3 and 93.4%, 93.8 and 87.8%, 88.8 and 93.9%, respectively. The logistic model had the best performance for diagnosing malignant renal lesions with AUC of 0.978, compared with the scoring method and the counting method with AUCs of 0.958 and 0.965.

Conclusion: The combination of contrast-enhanced ultrasound with conventional ultrasound improved the diagnostic performance of solid renal lesions based on the logistic regression model.

Advances In Knowledge: In this study, we revealed that the combination of CEUS and conventional ultrasound provided higher accuracy for diagnosing malignant renal tumors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1259/bjr.20210518DOI Listing
July 2021

Assessing the Ratios of Formaldehyde and Glyoxal to NO as Indicators of O-NO-VOC Sensitivity.

Environ Sci Technol 2021 Jul 28. Epub 2021 Jul 28.

State Key Joint Laboratory of Environmental Simulation and Pollution Control, College of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China.

Ozone (O) pollution has a negative effect on the public health and crop yields. Accurate diagnosis of O production sensitivity and targeted reduction of O precursors [i.e., nitrogen oxides (NO) or volatile organic compounds (VOCs)] are effective for mitigating O pollution. This study assesses the indicative roles of the surface formaldehyde-to-NO ratio (FNR) and glyoxal-to-NO ratio (GNR) on surface O-NO-VOC sensitivity based on a meta-analysis consisting of multiple field observations and model simulations. Thresholds of the FNR and GNR are determined using the relationship between the relative change of the O production rate and the two indicators, which are 0.55 ± 0.16 and 1.0 ± 0.3 for the FNR and 0.009 ± 0.003 and 0.024 ± 0.007 for the GNR. The sensitivity analysis indicated that the surface FNR is likely to be affected by formaldehyde primary sources under certain conditions, whereas the GNR might not be. As glyoxal measurements are becoming increasingly available, using the FNR and GNR together as O sensitivity indicators has broad potential applications.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.0c07506DOI Listing
July 2021

Combined detection of peripheral blood VEGF and inflammation biomarkers to evaluate the clinical response and prognostic prediction of non-operative ESCC.

Sci Rep 2021 Jul 27;11(1):15305. Epub 2021 Jul 27.

Department of Radiation Oncology, The Affiliated Huai'an Hospital of Xuzhou Medical University, The Second People's Hospital of Huai'an, Huai'an, China.

An association between angiogenesis/inflammation status and tumor has been reported in various types of cancer. This study sought to assess the role of peripheral blood VEGF and some inflammation biomarkers in evaluating clinical response and prognosis in patients with non-operative esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). Peripheral blood of 143 patients with non-operative ESCC at our institute was dynamically collected at 5 time points including 1 day before radiotherapy, during radiotherapy (15f), at the end of radiotherapy, 1 month after radiotherapy, and 3 months after radiotherapy. VEGF expression in the peripheral blood was detected and related inflammation biomarkers such as GPS, CAR and CLR were counted. Logistic regression and Cox regression were implemented respectively to analyze the correlation of each predictor with clinical response and prognosis. The performance of combined testing was estimated using AUCs. Based on independent predictors, a nomogram prediction model was established to predict the probabilities of 1- and 2-year PFS of patients. The effectiveness of the nomogram model was characterized by C-index, AUC, calibration curves and DCA. VEGF and CLR levels at the end of radiotherapy were independent predictors of clinical response, while VEGF and GPS levels at 3 months after radiotherapy were independent prognostic predictors. The efficacy of combined detection of VEGF and CLR is superior to the single detection in evaluating clinical response and prognosis. The nomogram showed excellent accuracy in predicting PFS. The combined detection of VEGF and CLR at the end of radiotherapy can be used to evaluate the clinical response of patients with non-operative ESCC, and the combined detection of VEGF and GPS 3 months after radiotherapy can be used to predict the prognosis. Implemented by nomogram model, it is expected to provide practical and reliable method to evaluate the clinical response and prognosis of patients with non-operative ESCC tool.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-94329-8DOI Listing
July 2021

Can pre-ozonation be combined with gravity-driven membrane filtration to treat shale gas wastewater?

Sci Total Environ 2021 Jul 20;797:149181. Epub 2021 Jul 20.

Key Laboratory of Deep Earth Science and Engineering (Ministry of Education), College of Architecture and Environment, Institute of New Energy and Low-Carbon Technology, Institute for Disaster Management and Reconstruction, Sichuan University, Chengdu, Sichuan 610207, PR China; Yibin Institute of Industrial Technology, Sichuan University, Yibin Park, Section 2, Lingang Ave., Cuiping District, Yibin, Sichuan 644000, PR China. Electronic address:

Low-cost gravity-driven membrane (GDM) filtration has the potential to efficiently manage highly decentralized shale gas wastewater (SGW). In this work, the feasibility of combining low dosage pre-ozonation with the GDM process was evaluated in the treatment of SGW. The results showed that pre-ozonation significantly increased the stable flux (372%) of GDM filtration, while slightly deteriorating the quality of the effluent water in terms of organic content (-14%). These results were mainly attributed to the conversion of macromolecular organics to low-molecular weight fractions by pre-ozonation. Interestingly, pre-ozonation markedly increased the flux (198%) in the first month of operation also for a GDM process added with granular activated carbon (GGDM). Nevertheless, the flux of O-GGDM systems dropped sharply around the 25th day of operation, which might be due to the rapid accumulation of pollutants in the high flux stage and the formation of a dense fouling layer. Pre-ozonation remarkably influenced the microbial community structure. And O-GDM systems were characterized by distinct core microorganisms, which might degrade specific organics in SGW. Furthermore, O-GDM outperformed simple GDM as a pretreatment for RO. These findings can provide valuable references for combining oxidation technologies with the GDM process in treating refractory wastewater.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.149181DOI Listing
July 2021

The Distinct Roles of Exosomes in Tumor-Stroma Crosstalk within Gastric Tumor Microenvironment.

Pharmacol Res 2021 Jul 23:105785. Epub 2021 Jul 23.

Laboratory of Molecular Pharmacology, Department of Pharmacology, School of Pharmacy, Southwest Medical University, Luzhou 646000, Sichuan, China; South Sichuan Institute of Translational Medicine, Luzhou 646000, Sichuan, China. Electronic address:

Gastric cancer (GC) development is a complex process displaying polytropic cell and molecular landscape within gastric tumor microenvironment (TME). Stromal cells in TME, including fibroblasts, endothelial cells, mesenchymal stem cells, and various immune cells, support tumor growth, metastasis, and recurrence, functioning as the soil for gastric tumorigenesis. Importantly, exosomes secreted by either stromal cells or tumor cells during tumor-stroma crosstalk performed as crucial transporter of agents including RNAs and proteins for cell-cell communication in GC pathogenesis. Therefore, given the distinct roles of exosomes secreted by various cell types in GC TME, increasing evidence has indicated that exosomes present as new biomarkers for GC diagnosis and prognosis and shed light on novel approaches for GC treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.phrs.2021.105785DOI Listing
July 2021

IGF2BP2 promotes the progression of colorectal cancer through a YAP-dependent mechanism.

Cancer Sci 2021 Jul 26. Epub 2021 Jul 26.

Department of Laboratory Medicine, Shanghai Tongji Hospital, Tongji University School of Medicine, Shanghai, 200065, China.

Background/aims: Insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) mRNA-binding protein 2 (IGF2BP2) is a post-transcriptional regulatory factor that has been implicated in the development of cancer. Herein, this study was performed to examine the possible role of of IGF2BP2 in colorectal cancer (CRC) and its underlying mechanism.

Methods: First, the expression patterns of IGF2BP2, YAP, and ErbB2 were detected in clinical tissue samples from CRC patients and CRC cell lines. In addition, cell proliferation, migration, invasion and apoptosis were measured and recorded. Enrichment of TEAD4 in the ErbB2 promoter region was measured. Furthermore, IGF2BP2 binding to m6A-modified YAP mRNA was determined using Me-RIP assay with anti-IGF2BP2 antibody. Lastly, a xenograft tumor mouse model was established to substantiate in vitro findings.

Results: IGF2BP2, YAP, and ErbB2 were highly-expressed in CRC tissues and cell lines. In addition, IGF2BP2 was found to be bind to m6A-modified YAP mRNA and increased its stability in CRC cells, thus augmenting the proliferation, migration and invasion of CRC cells while reducing their apoptosis. Meanwhile, YAP regulated ErbB2 expression by promoting TEAD4 enrichment in the ErbB2 promoter region. IGF2BP2 up-regulated ErbB2 by stabilizing YAP expression, and thus promoted proliferation, migration and invasion of CRC cells while attenuating their apoptosis. Also, IGF2BP2 promoted tumor formation in nude mice by regulating the YAP/ErbB2 axis.

Conclusion: Overall, our findings indicated that IGF2BP2 may bind to m6A-modified YAP mRNA to promote YAP stability and activate the expression of ErbB2, thus facilitating the progression of CRC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cas.15083DOI Listing
July 2021

Application of biomarkers in the diagnosis of uncertain samples of core needle biopsy of thyroid nodules.

Virchows Arch 2021 Jul 26. Epub 2021 Jul 26.

Department of Pathology, Peking University First Hospital, 7 Xishiku Street, Xicheng District, Beijing, 100034, China.

Core needle biopsy (CNB) is now more frequently used for the preoperative diagnosis of thyroid nodules. Based on morphology alone, 5-20% of CNB samples cannot be determined as malignant or benign. Compared to fine-needle biopsy (FNB), samples collected by CNB are more accessible for various tests. Therefore, studying biomarkers' application in distinguishing uncertain CNB samples of thyroid nodules is a practical need. Patients of thyroid nodules with both CNB and matched resected specimens were reviewed. Cases classified as indeterminate lesions, follicular neoplasms, and suspicious for malignancy were retrieved. All CNB samples were stained by immunohistochemistry (IHC) using antibodies against CK19, galectin-3, HBME-1, and CD56 and detected by next-generation sequencing (NGS) using an OncoAim® thyroid cancer multigene assay kit (Singlera Genomics) that detected 26 genes. Taking the resected specimens' classification as the gold standard, the sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), negative predictive value (NPV), accuracy of a single biomarker, and various combinations for discriminating malignancy from benignity were calculated. The sensitivity, specificity, PPV, NPV, and accuracy for preoperative malignancy evaluation were as follows. In the cohort of non-follicular-neoplasm-lesions (non-FN-lesion), they were 95.16%, 53.85%, 90.77%, 70.00%, and 88.00% for CK19; 95.16%, 38.46%, 88.06%, 62.50%, and 85.33% for galectin-3; 77.42%, 76.92%, 94.12%, 41.67%, and 58.00% for HBME-1; 66.13%, 100.00%, 100.00%, 38.24%, and 72.00% for CD56; 90.32%, 92.31%, 98.25%, 66.67%, and 90.67% for NGS; and 88.71%, 92.30%, 98.21%, 63.16%, and 89.33% for integrated IHC. In the cohort of follicular neoplasms (FN), they were 30.43%, 77.77%, 77.77%, 30.43%, and 43.75% for CK19; 73.91%, 66.67%, 85.00%, 50.00%, and 71.88% for galectin-3; 26.09%, 88.89%, 85.71%, 32.00%, and 43.75% for HBME-1; 26.09%, 100.00%, 100.00%, 34.62%, and 46.88% for CD56; 52.17%, 88.89%, 92.31%, 42.11%, and 62.50% for NGS; 82.61%, 66.67%, 86.36%, 60.00%, and 78.13% for integrated IHC; and 100%, 66.67%, 88.46%, 100%, and 90.63% for integrated IHC-NGS. The application of biomarkers in distinguishing uncertain CNB samples of thyroid nodules is available and capable. CD56 negative or NGS positive suggests malignancy strongly for both FN and non-FN-lesion, which may be used as a "rule in" tool. The negative predictive value of the integrated IHC and the integrated IHC-NGS implies a high possibility to be benign for non-FN-lesion and FN separately, which can work as a "rule out" tool. Considering the balance of specificity and sensitivity, NGS is the best for non-FN-lesion and the integrated IHC-NGS is the best for FN.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00428-021-03161-yDOI Listing
July 2021

Effective Adsorption of Methyl Orange on Organo-Silica Nanoparticles Functionalized by a Multi-Hydroxyl-Containing Gemini Surfactant: A Joint Experimental and Theoretical Study.

ACS Omega 2021 Jul 12;6(28):18014-18023. Epub 2021 Jul 12.

Department of Physics, Innovation Center of Materials for Energy and Environment Technologies, College of Science, Tibet University, Lhasa 850000, China.

A novel multi-hydroxyl-containing gemini surfactant (G) is first designed for modifying silica precursors (SiNPs), with the purpose of fabricating organic adsorbents targeted at methyl orange (MO). The purity of G and structural character of the resultant G-SiNPs are unveiled through Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, thermogravimetry-derivative thermogravimetry, scanning electron microscopy, and surface analysis (BET). Compared with SiNPs, G-SiNPs exhibit enhanced hydrophobicity, enlarged interlayer spacing, and increased thermal weight losses with the modifier availability reaching as high as 100%. Enhanced MO adsorption is obtained from the higher adsorption capacity of G-SiNPs (401.88 mg/g) than SiNPs (64.72 mg/g), which is more effective than most of the existing silica-based adsorbents. Pseudo-second-order and Langmuir models conform to all adsorption processes, indicating that the adsorption mainly relies on the availability of adsorption sites and characterized by a homogeneous adsorption form. By combining the experimental study and theoretical calculation methods, it can be demonstrated that the as-synthesized adsorbent G-SiNPs own multi-active sites that contribute to multi-adsorption mechanisms. The partition process, electrostatic interactions, and OH-π interactions are all responsible for the adsorption performance of G-SiNPs. This study throws light on the exploration of the superb MO adsorbent in aspects of not only the novel structured modifier and precursor but also theoretical analysis for gaining insights into the adsorption mechanism.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsomega.1c01788DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8296568PMC
July 2021

Ectopic opening of the common bile duct into the duodenal bulb with recurrent choledocholithiasis: A case report.

World J Clin Cases 2021 Jul;9(19):5332-5338

The Fourth Department of General Surgery, The First Hospital of Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000, Gansu Province, China.

Background: Ectopic opening of the common bile duct is a condition with low incidence. Patients with an ectopic common bile duct opening have a high incidence of common bile duct stones and acute cholangitis. Patients with atypical symptoms and imaging findings are easily misdiagnosed; moreover, it is difficult to retrieve stones by endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography, and common bile duct stones are prone to postsurgical recurrence.

Case Summary: A 45-year-old male patient presented with "intermittent upper abdominal pain and elevated liver enzymes for 1 wk". Transabdominal ultrasound indicated dilation of the common bile duct and the presence of stones. Magnetic resonance imaging showed that the common bile duct was dilated with stones and that its opening was ectopic. Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography revealed an abnormal opening of the common bile duct into the duodenal bulb and the presence of common bile duct stones. Laparoscopic extrahepatic choledochectomy and hepatoenteric anastomosis were performed. After surgery, the patient recovered well and was discharged. The patient has been followed up for 2 years since the operation. He has not experienced stone recurrence, and his liver function and quality of life are good.

Conclusion: Improved understanding of ectopic opening of the common bile duct is needed for clinicians to provide patients with appropriate treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12998/wjcc.v9.i19.5332DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8283612PMC
July 2021

Pink1/PARK2/mROS-Dependent Mitophagy Initiates the Sensitization of Cancer Cells to Radiation.

Oxid Med Cell Longev 2021 6;2021:5595652. Epub 2021 Jul 6.

NHC Key Laboratory of Radiobiology (Jilin University), School of Public Health, Jilin University, Changchun 130021, China.

Autophagy plays a double-edged sword for cancer; particularly, mitophagy plays important roles in the selective degradation of damaged mitochondria. However, whether mitophagy is involved in killing effects of tumor cells by ionizing radiation (IR) and its underlying mechanism remain elusive. The purpose is to evaluate the effects of mitochondrial ROS (mROS) on autophagy after IR; furthermore, we hypothesized that KillerRed (KR) targeting mitochondria could induce mROS generation, subsequent mitochondrial depolarization, accumulation of Pink1, and recruitment of PARK2 to promote the mitophagy. Thereby, we would achieve a new strategy to enhance mROS accumulation and clarify the roles and mechanisms of radiosensitization by KR and IR. Our data demonstrated that IR might cause autophagy of both MCF-7 and HeLa cells, which is related to mitochondria and mROS, and the ROS scavenger N-acetylcysteine (NAC) could reduce the effects. Based on the theory, mitochondrial targeting vector sterile - and HEAT/armadillo motif-containing protein 1- (Sarm1-) mtKR has been successfully constructed, and we found that ROS levels have significantly increased after light exposure. Furthermore, mitochondrial depolarization of HeLa cells was triggered, such as the decrease of NaK ATPase, CaMg ATPase, and mitochondrial respiratory complex I and III activities, and mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP) has significantly decreased, and voltage-dependent anion channel 1 (VDAC1) protein has significantly increased in the mitochondria. Additionally, HeLa cell proliferation was obviously inhibited, and the cell autophagic rates dramatically increased, which referred to the regulation of the Pink1/PARK2 pathway. These results indicated that mitophagy induced by mROS can initiate the sensitization of cancer cells to IR and might be regulated by the Pink1/PARK2 pathway.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2021/5595652DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8279859PMC
July 2021

A Computationally Virtual Histological Staining Method to Ovarian Cancer Tissue by Deep Generative Adversarial Networks.

Comput Math Methods Med 2021 1;2021:4244157. Epub 2021 Jul 1.

College of Computer Science and Technology, China University of Petroleum, Qingdao, 266580 Shandong, China.

Histological analysis to tissue samples is elemental for diagnosing the risk and severity of ovarian cancer. The commonly used Hematoxylin and Eosin (H&E) staining method involves complex steps and strict requirements, which would seriously impact the research of histological analysis of the ovarian cancer. Virtual histological staining by the Generative Adversarial Network (GAN) provides a feasible way for these problems, yet it is still a challenge of using deep learning technology since the amounts of data available are quite limited for training. Based on the idea of GAN, we propose a weakly supervised learning method to generate autofluorescence images of unstained ovarian tissue sections corresponding to H&E staining sections of ovarian tissue. Using the above method, we constructed the supervision conditions for the virtual staining process, which makes the image quality synthesized in the subsequent virtual staining stage more perfect. Through the doctors' evaluation of our results, the accuracy of ovarian cancer unstained fluorescence image generated by our method reached 93%. At the same time, we evaluated the image quality of the generated images, where the FID reached 175.969, the IS score reached 1.311, and the MS reached 0.717. Based on the image-to-image translation method, we use the data set constructed in the previous step to implement a virtual staining method that is accurate to tissue cells. The accuracy of staining through the doctor's assessment reached 97%. At the same time, the accuracy of visual evaluation based on deep learning reached 95%.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2021/4244157DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8270697PMC
July 2021

Review: Posed vs. Genuine Facial Emotion Recognition and Expression in Autism and Implications for Intervention.

Front Psychol 2021 9;12:653112. Epub 2021 Jul 9.

Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV, United States.

Different styles of social interaction are one of the core characteristics of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Social differences among individuals with ASD often include difficulty in discerning the emotions of neurotypical people based on their facial expressions. This review first covers the rich body of literature studying differences in facial emotion recognition (FER) in those with ASD, including behavioral studies and neurological findings. In particular, we highlight subtle emotion recognition and various factors related to inconsistent findings in behavioral studies of FER in ASD. Then, we discuss the dual problem of FER - namely facial emotion expression (FEE) or the production of facial expressions of emotion. Despite being less studied, social interaction involves both the ability to recognize emotions and to produce appropriate facial expressions. How others perceive facial expressions of emotion in those with ASD has remained an under-researched area. Finally, we propose a method for teaching FER [FER teaching hierarchy (FERTH)] based on recent research investigating FER in ASD, considering the use of posed vs. genuine emotions and static vs. dynamic stimuli. We also propose two possible teaching approaches: (1) a standard method of teaching progressively from simple drawings and cartoon characters to more complex audio-visual video clips of genuine human expressions of emotion with context clues or (2) teaching in a field of images that includes posed and genuine emotions to improve generalizability before progressing to more complex audio-visual stimuli. Lastly, we advocate for autism interventionists to use FER stimuli developed primarily for research purposes to facilitate the incorporation of well-controlled stimuli to teach FER and bridge the gap between intervention and research in this area.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.653112DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8300960PMC
July 2021

Application of a Reactive Oxygen Species-Responsive Drug-Eluting Coating for Surface Modification of Vascular Stents.

ACS Appl Mater Interfaces 2021 Jul 25. Epub 2021 Jul 25.

Key Laboratory of Advanced Technology for Materials of Education Ministry and School of Material Science and Engineering, Southwest Jiaotong University, Chengdu 610031, China.

Stent implantation is the primary method used to treat coronary heart disease. However, it is associated with complications such as restenosis and late thrombosis. Despite surface modification being an effective way to improve the biocompatibility of stents, the current research studies are not focused on changes in the vascular microenvironment at the implantation site. In the present study, an adaptive drug-loaded coating was constructed on the surface of vascular stent materials that can respond to oxidative stress at the site of vascular lesions. Two functional molecules, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) and cysteine hydrochloride, were employed to fabricate a coating on the surface of 316L stainless steel. In addition, the coating was used as a drug carrier to load pitavastatin calcium. EGCG has antioxidant activity, and pitavastatin calcium can inhibit smooth muscle cell proliferation. Therefore, EGCG and pitavastatin calcium provided a synergistic anti-inflammatory effect. Moreover, the coating was cross-linked using disulfide bonds, which accelerated the release of the drug in response to reactive oxygen species. A positive correlation was observed between the rate of drug release and the degree of oxidative stress. Collectively, this drug-loaded oxidative stress-responsive coating has been demonstrated to significantly inhibit inflammation, accelerate endothelialization, and reduce the risk of restenosis of vascular stents .
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsami.1c08880DOI Listing
July 2021

Gastrointestinal Malignancies and Venous Thromboembolic Disease: Clinical Significance and Endovascular Interventions.

Dig Dis Interv 2020 22;4(3):260-266. Epub 2020 Sep 22.

Section of Interventional Radiology, Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology, Washington University in St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri.

Gastrointestinal malignancy encompasses a wide range of disease processes. Its incidence and mortality rate rank among the highest of all cancers. Venous thromboembolic disease is a common complication of gastrointestinal malignancy. Anticoagulation remains the first-line therapy. However, for patients who cannot tolerate or have failed anticoagulation, inferior vena cava (IVC) filter placement may be an option. Furthermore, to improve symptom resolution and reduce the severity of postthrombotic syndrome, catheter-directed thrombolysis (CDT) may be an option. Recent randomized trials including the ATTRACT (Acute Venous Thrombosis: Thrombus Removal with Adjunctive Catheter-Directed Thrombolysis) trial have shed new light on the efficacy and safety of CDT and related methods. Overall, the decision to proceed with IVC filter placement or CDT must be individualized.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1055/s-0040-1716739DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8294347PMC
September 2020

Comparative transcriptome analysis of Chinese grass shrimp (Palaemonetes sinensis) hepatopancreas under ectoparasitic isopod (Tachaea chinensis) infection.

Fish Shellfish Immunol 2021 Jul 22. Epub 2021 Jul 22.

Key Laboratory of Livestock Infectious Diseases in Northeast China, Ministry of Education, College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, Shenyang Agricultural University, 110866, Shenyang, China. Electronic address:

Tachaea chinensis, a parasitic isopod, negatively affects the production of several commercially important shrimp species. To better understand the interaction between shrimp immunity and isopod infection, we performed a transcriptome analysis of the hepatopancreas of Palaemonetes sinensis challenged with T. chinensis. After assembly and annotation, 75,980 high-quality unigenes were obtained using RNA-seq data. Differential gene expression analysis revealed 896 significantly differently expressed genes (DEGs) after infection, with 452 and 444 upregulated and downregulated genes, respectively. Specifically, expression levels of genes involved in detoxification, such as the interferon regulatory factor, venom carboxylesterase-6, serine proteinase inhibitor, and cytochrome P450, were upregulated. Furthermore, expression levels of genes corresponding to retinol dehydrogenase, triosephosphate isomerase, variant ionotropic glutamate receptor, and phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase were significantly upregulated after isopod parasitization, indicating that the shrimp's visual system was influenced by isopod parasitization. Moreover, quantitative real-time PCR of 10 DEGs helped validate the RNA-seq findings. These results provide a valuable basis for future studies on the elucidation of immune responses of P. sinensis to T. chinensis infection.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.fsi.2021.07.018DOI Listing
July 2021

HOXB7 acts as an oncogenic biomarker in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.

Cancer Cell Int 2021 Jul 24;21(1):393. Epub 2021 Jul 24.

Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, The Affiliated Stomatological Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, 210029, Jiangsu, China.

Background: The homeobox gene Homeobox B7 (HOXB7) is overexpressed across a range of cancers and promotes tumorigenesis through varying effects on proliferation, survival, migration and invasion. However, its expression pattern and oncogenic role of HOXB7 in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) remain largely unexplored. Here, we aimed to explore the expression pattern of HOXB7, its clinical significance as well as functional roles in HNSCC.

Methods: HOXB7 mRNA expression in HNSCC was determined by data mining and analyses from TCGA (The Cancer Genome Atlas) and GEO (Gene Expression Omnibus) datasets. The protein abundance of HOXB7 was measured by immunohistochemistry in 119 primary HNSCC samples and associations between its expression and clinicopathological parameters and patient survival were evaluated. The pro-tumorigenic roles of HOXB7 in HNSCC were further delineated in vitro by loss-of-function assay. And a xenograft tumor model was established in nude mice to assess the role of HOXB7 in tumor growth. Connectivity Map (CMap) analysis was performed to identify bioactive small molecules which might be potential inhibitors for HOXB7.

Results: Bioinformatics analyses showed that HOXB7 mRNA was significantly overexpressed in 8 independent HNSCC datasets from TCGA and GEO databases. HOXB7 protein was markedly upregulated in HNSCC samples as compared to normal counterparts and its overexpression significantly associated with high pathological grade, advanced clinical stage, cervical node metastasis (P = 0.0195, 0.0152, 0.0300) and reduced overall and disease-free survival (P = 0.0014, 0.0007). Univariate and multivariate Cox regression analyses further revealed HOXB7 as an independent prognostic factor for patients' overall survival. Moreover, HOXB7 knockdown significantly inhibited cell proliferation, migration and invasion and induced cell apoptosis in HNSCC cells, and resulted in compromised tumour growth in vivo. Furthermore, CMap (Connectivity map) analysis has identified three potential bioactive small molecule inhibitors (NU-1025, thiamine, vinburnine) for HOXB7 targeted therapy in HNSCC.

Conclusions: Our findings revealed that overexpression of HOXB7 was associates with tumour aggressiveness and unfavourable prognosis by serving a novel prognostic biomarker in HNSCC. Moreover, HOXB7 might be involved in the development and progression of HNSCC as an oncogene, and thereby might be a potential therapeutic target for HNSCC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12935-021-02093-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8306226PMC
July 2021

Long non-coding RNA NKILA alleviates airway inflammation in asthmatic mice by promoting M2 macrophage polarization and inhibiting the NF-κB pathway.

Biochem Biophys Res Commun 2021 Jul 21;571:46-52. Epub 2021 Jul 21.

The First Affiliated Hospital of Jinzhou Medical University, Liaoning Province, 121000, China. Electronic address:

Asthma remains a severe public health problem. Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) are potent regulators in various diseases including asthma. This study investigated the mechanism of lncRNA NF-κB interacting lncRNA (NKILA) in asthma. The model of asthma in mice was induced by ovalbum (OVA). LncRNA NKILA expression, serum total IgE level and expressions of inflammatory cytokines (IL-4, IL-5, IL-13, and TNF-α) in OVA-induced asthmatic mice were detected. NKILA was overexpressed to evaluate the airway inflammation and airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR) in asthmatic mice. Macrophage abundance, M1/M2-polarized macrophage numbers, and expressions of macrophage polarization-related genes were detected. Levels of the NF-κB pathway-related proteins were determined. Downregulated NKILA and upregulated total IgE level and expressions of inflammatory cytokines were observed in asthmatic mice. NKILA overexpression alleviated AHR and airway inflammation in asthmatic mice. NKILA reduced macrophage abundance and promoted M2 macrophage polarization in asthmatic mice. NKILA inhibited the NF-κB pathway in asthmatic mice. We highlighted that lncRNA NKILA limited the asthmatic airway inflammation via promoting M2 macrophage polarization and inhibiting the NF-κB pathway.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbrc.2021.07.023DOI Listing
July 2021

The association between sarcopenia susceptibility and polymorphisms of FTO, ACVR2B, and IRS1 in Tibetans.

Mol Genet Genomic Med 2021 Jul 24:e1747. Epub 2021 Jul 24.

Institute of Biological Anthropology, Jinzhou Medical University, Jinzhou, China.

Background: Hypoxia within the plateau has a negative effect on skeletal muscle and may play a role in the development of sarcopenia in humans. Tibetans having lived in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau for thousands of years, are a high-risk group for sarcopenia; however, they have a distinctive suite of genetic traits that enable them to tolerate environmental hypoxia and are genetically significantly different from Han Chinese and other lowland populations. Sarcopenia has been consistently found to be associated with single-nucleotide polymorphisms, but few studies have investigated the role of single-nucleotide polymorphisms in a range of muscle phenotypes and sarcopenia in Tibetan peoples.

Methods: Our study aimed to investigate the skeletal muscle mass and fat mass of 160 Tibetans (80 men and 80 women) from Lhasa (altitude of 3600 meters) and analyze the association between the polymorphisms of fat mass and obesity protein (FTO) rs9939609, FTO rs9936385, activin type IIB receptor (ACVR2B) rs2276541, insulin receptor substrate 1 (IRS1) 2943656 and sarcopenia.

Result: FTO rs9939609 and rs9936385 polymorphisms were associated with lower limb skeletal muscle mass and sarcopenia for Tibetan women, and TT homozygotes had a higher risk for sarcopenia. But ACVR2B rs2276541 and IRS1 2943656 polymorphisms were unassociated with sarcopenia in Tibetan.

Conclusion: In Tibetans, FTO rs9939609 and rs9936385 polymorphisms were associated with sarcopenia, and ACVR2B rs2276541 and IRS1 2943656 polymorphisms were unassociated with sarcopenia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mgg3.1747DOI Listing
July 2021

Morphological Features of Aortic Arch Predicting the Risk for Acute Type B Aortic Dissection.

World J Surg 2021 Jul 23. Epub 2021 Jul 23.

Department of Vascular Surgery, The Second Xiangya Hospital of Central South University, Changsha, 410011, China.

Background: The purpose of the study is to elucidate the changes in aortic morphological parameters and identify the specific geometric risk factors associated with aTBAD.

Methods: A total of 167 patients in aTBAD group and 196 subjects in control group were enrolled in the study. The aortic morphological data were retrospectively analyzed by 3mensio Vascular software. The aortic morphological parameters include diameter, length, angulation, tortuosity and the type of aortic arch. Multivariable logistic regression models were developed to identify the significant predictors associated with the angulation, tortuosity and aortic arch type. The predictive capacity of the models was evaluated through the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis.

Results: The diameters in the ascending aorta and aortic arch and the lengths in the ascending aorta and total aorta were significantly greater in aTBAD group. Besides, the angulation of the ascending aorta and aortic arch in aTBAD group increased significantly. The tortuosity of aortic arch and total aorta was significantly higher in aTBAD group. The prevalence of type III arch in aTBAD group was significantly higher than that in the controls. Multivariable models demonstrated that aortic arch angulation, tortuosity and type III arch were independent geometric predictors of aTBAD occurrence. Based on the ROC analysis, AUC of the risk prediction models was 0.977, 0.958 and 0.945, respectively.

Conclusions: Besides the enlargement of the ascending aorta and aortic arch, incremental aortic arch angulation, tortuosity and type III arch configuration are valuable geometric risk factors that could enhance aTBAD incidence.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00268-021-06247-5DOI Listing
July 2021

The signaling role of extracellular ATP in co-culture of Shiraia sp. S9 and Pseudomonas fulva SB1 for enhancing hypocrellin A production.

Microb Cell Fact 2021 Jul 23;20(1):144. Epub 2021 Jul 23.

College of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Soochow University, Suzhou, 215123, China.

Background: Adenosine 5'-triphosphate (ATP) plays both a central role as an intracellular energy source, and a crucial extracellular signaling role in diverse physiological processes of animals and plants. However, there are less reports concerning the signaling role of microbial extracellular ATP (eATP). Hypocrellins are effective anticancer photodynamic therapy (PDT) agents from bambusicolous Shiraia fungi. The co-culture of Shiraia sp. S9 and a bacterium Pseudomonas fulva SB1 isolated from Shiraia fruiting bodies was established for enhanced hypocrellin A (HA) production. The signaling roles of eATP to mediate hypocrellin biosynthesis were investigated in the co-culture.

Results: The co-culture induced release of eATP at 378 nM to the medium around 4 h. The eATP release was interdependent on cytosolic Ca concentration and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, respectively. The eATP production could be suppressed by the Ca chelator EGTA or abolished by the channel blocker La, ROS scavenger vitamin C and NADPH oxidase inhibitor diphenyleneiodonium chloride (DPI). The bacterium-induced HO production was strongly inhibited by reactive blue (RB), a specific inhibitor of membrane purinoceptors, but dependent on the induced Ca influx in the co-culture. On the other hand, the application of exogenous ATP (exATP) at 10-300 µM to Shiraia cultures also promoted fungal conidiation and HA production, both of which were blocked effectively by the purinoceptor inhibitors pyridoxalphosphate-6-azophenyl-2', 4'-disulfonic acid (PPADS) and RB, and ATP hydrolase apyrase. Both the induced expression of HA biosynthetic genes and HA accumulation were inhibited significantly under the blocking of the eATP or Ca signaling, and the scavenge of ROS in the co-culture.

Conclusions: Our results indicate that eATP release is an early event during the intimate bacterial-fungal interaction and eATP plays a signaling role in the bacterial elicitation on fungal metabolites. Ca and ROS are closely linked for activation of the induced ATP release and its signal transduction. This is the first report on eATP production in the fungal-bacterial co-culture and its involvement in the induced biosynthesis of fungal metabolites.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12934-021-01637-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8305905PMC
July 2021

Electric Field Assisted Femtosecond Laser Preparation of [email protected] Composites with Controlled Morphology and Crystallinity for Photocatalytic Degradation.

Materials (Basel) 2021 Jul 8;14(14). Epub 2021 Jul 8.

Laser Micro Nanofabricat Lab, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing 100081, China.

TiO is popular in photocatalytic degradation dye pollutants due to its abundance and its stability under photochemical conditions. Au loaded TiO can achieve efficient absorption of visible light and deal with the problem of low conversion efficiency for solar energy of TiO. This work presents a new strategy to prepare Au nanoparticles-loaded TiO composites through electric-field-assisted temporally-shaped femtosecond laser liquid-phase ablation of Au and amorphous TiO. By adjusting the laser pulse delay and electric field parameters, gold nanoparticles with different structures can be obtained, such as nanospheres, nanoclusters, and nanostars (AuNSs). AuNSs can promote the local crystallization of amorphous TiO in the preparation process and higher free electron density can also be excited to work together with the mixed crystalline phase, hindering the recombination between carriers and holes to achieve efficient photocatalytic degradation. The methylene blue can be effectively degraded by 86% within 30 min, and much higher than the 10% of Au nanoparticles loaded amorphous TiO. Moreover, the present study reveals the crystallization process and control methods for preparing nanoparticles by laser liquid ablation, providing a green and effective new method for the preparation of high-efficiency photocatalytic materials.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ma14143816DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8303837PMC
July 2021

Characterization of the protein structure of soymilk fermented by Lactobacillus and evaluation of its potential allergenicity based on the sensitized-cell model.

Food Chem 2021 Jul 10;366:130569. Epub 2021 Jul 10.

State Key Laboratory of Food Science and Technology, Nanchang University, Nanchang 330047, China; Sino-German Joint Research Institute, Nanchang University, Nanchang 330047, China. Electronic address:

This study aimed to investigate the effects of fermented soymilk (FSM) with Lactobacillus brevis CICC 23,474 and L. brevis CICC 23,470 on the structural changes and allergenicity of major allergenic proteins in soymilk (SM). Spectroscopy and liquid chromatograph-tandem mass spectrometer (LC-MS/MS) were used to characterize changes in protein spatial structure and epitopes. The antigenicity and potential allergenicity were evaluated by immunoblotting, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and KU812 cell degranulation assay. Results suggested that the advanced structure of proteins was destroyed. Antigenicity was also significantly reduced, and five human IgE-binding linear epitopes (i.e., E5-E33, R27-S41, D414-A437, G253-I265 and V449-S471) were destroyed by fermentation. Furthermore, after in vitro simulated gastrointestinal digestion, FSM showed lower IgG/IgE-binding capacity and weaker degranulation ability of KU812 cells. All these findings demonstrated that fermentation with Lactobacillus can destroy the conformational and linear epitopes of proteins and reduce the potential allergenicity of SM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2021.130569DOI Listing
July 2021

Novel rRNA-depletion methods for total RNA sequencing and ribosome profiling developed for avian species.

Poult Sci 2021 Jun 9;100(9):101321. Epub 2021 Jun 9.

Center for RNA Biology, Genome to Therapeutics, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Department of Urology, Department of Biology, Goergen Institute for Data Science, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY 14642, USA. Electronic address:

Deep sequencing of RNAs has greatly aided the study of the transcriptome, enabling comprehensive gene expression profiling and the identification of novel transcripts. While messenger RNAs (mRNAs) are of the greatest interest in gene expression studies as they encode for proteins, mRNAs make up only 3 to 5% of total RNAs, with the majority comprising ribosomal RNAs (rRNAs). Therefore, applications of deep sequencing to RNA face the challenge of how to efficiently enrich mRNA species prior to library construction. Traditional methods extract mRNAs using oligo-dT primers targeting the poly-A tail on mRNAs; however, this approach is not comprehensive as it does not capture mRNAs lacking the poly-A tail or other long non-coding RNAs that we may be interested in. Alternative mRNA enrichment methods deplete rRNAs, but such approaches require species-specific probes and the commercially available kits are costly and have only been developed for a limited number of model organisms. Here, we describe a quick, cost-effective method for depleting rRNAs using custom-designed oligos, using chickens as an example species for probe design. With this optimized protocol, we have not only removed the rRNAs from total RNAs for RNA-seq library construction but also depleted rRNA fragments from ribosome-protected fragments for ribosome profiling. Currently, this is the only rRNA depletion-based method for avian species; this method thus provides a valuable resource for both the scientific community and the poultry industry.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.psj.2021.101321DOI Listing
June 2021

Downward aeration promotes static composting by affecting mineralization and humification.

Bioresour Technol 2021 Jul 14;338:125592. Epub 2021 Jul 14.

College of Life Sciences, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China.

A composting experiment with sewage sludge and green waste was conducted to explore the effects of aeration directions (i.e., upward and downward) on static composting systems. The compost properties, including humification indexes and organic matter loss rate, and microbial diversity during the composting, were determined. Results showed that the downward aeration promoted the homogenization of temperature and moisture of the static composting system, thereby stimulating microbial metabolism and accelerating mineralization and humification. Microbial community profiles significantly changed among the composting phases. The humification dynamics were significantly correlated with the relative abundance of multiple microbial functional groups. However, no significant effects of aeration direction on the microbial community profiles were observed. The findings indicate that downward aeration is promising to improve the quality of static compost production, by stimulating microbial metabolism rather than altering microbial community profiles.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biortech.2021.125592DOI Listing
July 2021

A Flexible Neural Representation of Faces in the Human Brain.

Cereb Cortex Commun 2020 28;1(1):tgaa055. Epub 2020 Aug 28.

Department of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering, Rockefeller Neurosciences Institute, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV 26506, USA.

An important question in human face perception research is to understand whether the neural representation of faces is dynamically modulated by context. In particular, although there is a plethora of neuroimaging literature that has probed the neural representation of faces, few studies have investigated what low-level structural and textural facial features parametrically drive neural responses to faces and whether the representation of these features is modulated by the task. To answer these questions, we employed 2 task instructions when participants viewed the same faces. We first identified brain regions that parametrically encoded high-level social traits such as perceived facial trustworthiness and dominance, and we showed that these brain regions were modulated by task instructions. We then employed a data-driven computational face model with parametrically generated faces and identified brain regions that encoded low-level variation in the faces (shape and skin texture) that drove neural responses. We further analyzed the evolution of the neural feature vectors along the visual processing stream and visualized and explained these feature vectors. Together, our results showed a flexible neural representation of faces for both low-level features and high-level social traits in the human brain.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/texcom/tgaa055DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8152845PMC
August 2020

Association Between Dietary Iron Intake and Serum Ferritin and Severe Headache or Migraine.

Front Nutr 2021 6;8:685564. Epub 2021 Jul 6.

Department of Epidemiology, College of Public Health, Harbin Medical University, Harbin, China.

Dietary iron intake and serum ferritin in relation to severe headache or migraine remain largely unknown. Therefore, we investigated the associations between dietary iron intake and serum ferritin with severe headache or migraine among American adults. This cross-sectional study included 7,880 adults (≥20 years) from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES) of America from 1999 to 2004. We performed multivariable logistic regression and restricted cubic spline (RCS) regression to assess the association of dietary iron and serum ferritin with severe headache or migraine. Most women aged 20-50 years consumed less dietary iron than their recommended dietary allowances. Dietary iron intake was inversely associated with severe headache or migraine in women aged 20-50 years. For women over 50 years, serum ferritin was negatively associated with severe headache or migraine. For men, there was no significant relationship between dietary iron and serum ferritin, and severe headache or migraine. Dietary iron intake has different effects on migraine in women of different ages, and this different effect may be due to age-related menstrual changes. Women aged 20-50 years should have a higher awareness of RDA and increase their dietary iron intake if needed, which may play an important role in preventing severe headache or migraine. Higher serum ferritin levels in women aged 50 and above may have a protective effect against migraine.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fnut.2021.685564DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8289886PMC
July 2021

Development and Validation of a Radiomic Nomogram for Predicting the Prognosis of Kidney Renal Clear Cell Carcinoma.

Front Oncol 2021 6;11:613668. Epub 2021 Jul 6.

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

Purpose: The present study aims to comprehensively investigate the prognostic value of a radiomic nomogram that integrates contrast-enhanced computed tomography (CECT) radiomic signature and clinicopathological parameters in kidney renal clear cell carcinoma (KIRC).

Methods: A total of 136 and 78 KIRC patients from the training and validation cohorts were included in the retrospective study. The intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) was used to assess reproducibility of radiomic feature extraction. Univariate Cox analysis and least absolute shrinkage and selection operator (LASSO) as well as multivariate Cox analysis were utilized to construct radiomic signature and clinical signature in the training cohort. A prognostic nomogram was established containing a radiomic signature and clinicopathological parameters by using a multivariate Cox analysis. The predictive ability of the nomogram [relative operating characteristic curve (ROC), concordance index (C-index), Hosmer-Lemeshow test, and calibration curve] was evaluated in the training cohort and validated in the validation cohort. Patients were split into high- and low-risk groups, and the Kaplan-Meier (KM) method was conducted to identify the forecasting ability of the established models. In addition, genes related with the radiomic risk score were determined by weighted correlation network analysis (WGCNA) and were used to conduct functional analysis.

Results: A total of 2,944 radiomic features were acquired from the tumor volumes of interest (VOIs) of CECT images. The radiomic signature, including ten selected features, and the clinical signature, including three selected clinical variables, showed good performance in the training and validation cohorts [area under the curve (AUC), 0.897 and 0.712 for the radiomic signature; 0.827 and 0.822 for the clinical signature, respectively]. The radiomic prognostic nomogram showed favorable performance and calibration in the training cohort (AUC, 0.896, C-index, 0.846), which was verified in the validation cohort (AUC, 0.768). KM curves indicated that the progression-free interval (PFI) time was dramatically shorter in the high-risk group than in the low-risk group. The functional analysis indicated that radiomic signature was significantly associated with T cell activation.

Conclusions: The nomogram combined with CECT radiomic and clinicopathological signatures exhibits excellent power in predicting the PFI of KIRC patients, which may aid in clinical management and prognostic evaluation of cancer patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fonc.2021.613668DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8290524PMC
July 2021
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