Publications by authors named "Xudong Liu"

214 Publications

Autologous esophageal mucosa with polyglycolic acid transplantation and temporary stent implantation can prevent stenosis after circumferential endoscopic submucosal dissection.

Ann Transl Med 2021 Apr;9(7):546

Department of Endoscopy, National Cancer Center/National Clinical Research Center for Cancer/Cancer Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, China.

Background: This research aimed at investigating the safety and efficacy of autologous esophageal mucosa (AEM) with polyglycolic acid (PGA) transplantation and temporary stent implantation (TSI) in preventing esophageal stenosis (ES) after early esophageal cancer (EC) surgery.

Methods: Between April 2019 and October 2020, patients scheduled for circumferential endoscopic submucosal dissection (ESD) were prospectively recruited. After ESD, autologous esophageal mucosal patches (MPs) were constructed on the absorbable PGA felt. Then, the felt was structured onto a covered metal mesh stent (CMMS) and attached to the ulcer surface. The stents were removed 6-8 weeks after the operation. The occurrence of ES and adverse events was observed and analyzed.

Results: Data from 25 patients were analyzed. In total, 14 patients (56%) had no stenosis during an average follow-up of 10.2 months, and 11 patients (44%) suffered strictures at a mean interval of 63.73 days after the ESD procedure. Stent migration occurred in 2 patients. No other complications, including perforations, bleeding, or wound infections, occurred. The median of endoscopic balloon dilatation (EBD) sessions was 2.16 (range, 0-14). There showed a higher post-ESD stricture rate in patients with lesions located in the middle-lower esophagus (P<0.05). More transplanted MPs may reduce the occurrence of ES.

Conclusions: AEM with PGA transplantation and TSI is a safe and effective approach of preventing ES and improving the life quality after circumferential ESD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.21037/atm-20-6987DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8105787PMC
April 2021

Dynamic Needle Tip Positioning versus Palpation and Ultrasound for Arteriovenous Puncture: A Meta-analysis.

Ultrasound Med Biol 2021 May 6. Epub 2021 May 6.

Department of Orthopaedics, Hebei Province Cangzhou Hospital of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine (Cangzhou No. 2 Hospital), Hebei, Cangzhou, China.

At present, dynamic needle-tip positioning (DNTP) technology is applied in arteriovenous puncture, challenging the use of ultrasound technology alone and palpation. Our goals were to extract data from experimental DNTP, ultrasound and palpation studies, using Review Manager, Version 5.3, for data analysis, and to evaluate whether DNTP has certain advantages in puncture. PubMed, EMBASE, the Cochrane Library, CNKI and WanFang Data Knowledge Service Platform were searched for randomized and non-randomized studies that compared DNTP with conventional ultrasound-guided techniques, no DNTP or palpation. The risk ratio with 95% confidence interval was calculated using the model corresponding to the I² value. Studies were identified to compare clinical indexes. With respect to clinical indexes, DNTP is better in terms of first-attempt success, overall success and complications. However, in infants, first-attempt success, overall success and number of additional punctures did not indicate good efficacy for DNTP compared with palpation. Artery puncture was also not performed well under ultrasound. On the basis of the current evidence, the advantages of DNTP over palpation and ultrasound are reflected in the successful first attempt rate of all groups and in all subgroups except infants. Therefore, for emergencies in elderly patients, DNTP can be used as a general method. Given that some of the studies were of low quality, more trials of high quality should be conducted to further verify the findings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ultrasmedbio.2021.04.001DOI Listing
May 2021

Authors' reply: Four novel optineurin mutations in patients with sporadic amyotrophic lateral sclerosis in Mainland China.

Neurobiol Aging 2021 Mar 11. Epub 2021 Mar 11.

Department of Neurology, Peking Union Medical College Hospital (PUMCH), Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences & Peking Union Medical College (CAMS & PUMC), Beijing, China; Neuroscience Center, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences & Peking Union Medical College (CAMS & PUMC), Beijing, China. Electronic address:

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2021.03.004DOI Listing
March 2021

Altered peripheral helper T cells in peripheral blood and muscle tissue of the patients with dermatomyositis.

Clin Exp Med 2021 Apr 26. Epub 2021 Apr 26.

Department of Rheumatology and Immunology, First Affiliated Hospital, China Medical University, Shenyang, 110001, People's Republic of China.

Peripheral helper T (Tph) cells, phenotypically PD-1hiCXCR5-CD4+, are a recently identified Th cell subset that relates to several autoimmune diseases. Contrary to PD-1hiCXCR5+CD4+ follicular helper T (Tfh) cells, Tph cells are not located in lymphoid organs but accumulate in inflamed tissues. This study investigated Tph cells to determine their involvement in dermatomyositis (DM). The frequency of circulating Tph and Tfh cells was evaluated by flow cytometry at baseline and after glucocorticoid treatment. The expression of Tph and B cells was determined in muscle tissue by immunohistochemistry (IHC). Further, the correlations between circulating Tph cells and clinical characteristics were investigated. Flow cytometry revealed that circulating Tph and Tfh cells were decreased in peripheral blood of DM patients compared with healthy controls (HCs). However, the muscular expression of Tph and B cells was upregulated in patients with DM compared to that in the controls by IHC. Interestingly, the increased B cells accumulated around Tph cells in infiltrated lesions. The frequency of circulating Tph cells was positively correlated with Tfh cells, CD3+ T cells, CD4+ T cells, and CD8+ T cells, whereas negatively correlated with erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), interleukin (IL)-6, and IL-10 levels. Furthermore, the abnormal circulating Tph cells in peripheral blood were recovered after glucocorticoid treatment. These results indicate that Tph cells might be involved in the immunopathogenesis of DM and therefore might provide novel insight for the development of DM therapies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10238-021-00713-zDOI Listing
April 2021

Dietary flavonoid intake and risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma: A population-based case-control study.

Nutrition 2021 Mar 7;89:111235. Epub 2021 Mar 7.

Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China. Electronic address:

Objectives: The aim of this population-based case-control study was to investigate the association between dietary consumption of the total flavonoids, subclasses, and specific flavonoids and the risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) among adults in a high-risk area of China.

Methods: We recruited 820 ESCC participants and 863 control participants from Yanting County. Dietary flavonoids were assessed using a validated 76-item food frequency questionnaire. Odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using logistic regression after considering potential confounders.

Results: Comparing the highest and lowest intake quartiles, we observed a negative association of ESCC risk with consumption of isoflavones (OR = 0.34, 95% CI = 0.23-0.50, P for trend < 0.001), daidzein (OR = 0.31, 95% CI = 0.21-0.45, P for trend < 0.001), genistein (OR = 0.34, 95% CI = 0.23-0.50, P for trend < 0.001), and glycitein (OR = 0.32, 95% CI = 0.22-0.48, P for trend < 0.001) after adjustment for potential confounders. A more pronounced negative association was observed when comparing the third quartile, rather than the fourth, with the lowest quartile for consumption of anthocyanidins (OR = 0.58, 95% CI = 0.42-0.80, P for trend = 0.004), delphinidin (OR = 0.57, 95% CI = 0.41-0.78, P for trend = 0.004), and cyanidin (OR = 0.48, 95% CI = 0.35-0.66, P for trend = 0.003) after considering potential confounders. Consumption of total flavonoids, flavones, flavonols, and six other specific flavonoids (quercetin, myricetin, kaempferol, luteolin, apigenin, and peonidin) was not associated with ESCC risk.

Conclusions: The results suggest that increased dietary intake of isoflavones and moderate consumption of anthocyanidins were associated with a decreased risk of ESCC. Future nutritional guidelines may emphasize foods or supplements rich in specific isoflavones and anthocyanidins for ESCC chemoprevention.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nut.2021.111235DOI Listing
March 2021

A Glycolysis-Based Long Non-coding RNA Signature Accurately Predicts Prognosis in Renal Carcinoma Patients.

Front Genet 2021 1;12:638980. Epub 2021 Apr 1.

Department of Urology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, China.

Background: The prognosis of renal cell carcinoma (RCC) varies greatly among different risk groups, and the traditional indicators have limited effect in the identification of risk grade in patients with RCC. The purpose of our study is to explore a glycolysis-based long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) signature and verify its potential clinical significance in prognostic prediction of RCC patients.

Methods: In this study, RNA data and clinical information were downloaded from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) database. Univariate and multivariate cox regression displayed six significantly related lncRNAs (AC124854.1, AC078778.1, EMX2OS, DLGAP1-AS2, AC084876.1, and AC026401.3) which were utilized in construction of risk score by a formula. The accuracy of risk score was verified by a series of statistical methods such as receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves, nomogram and Kaplan-Meier curves. Its potential clinical significance was excavated by gene enrichment analysis.

Results: Kaplan-Meier curves and ROC curves showed reliability of the risk score to predict the prognosis of RCC patients. Stratification analysis indicated that the risk score was independent predictor compare to other traditional clinical parameters. The clinical nomogram showed highly rigorous with index of 0.73 and precisely predicted 1-, 3-, and 5-year survival time of RCC patients. Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) and Gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) depicted the top ten correlated pathways in both high-risk group and low-risk group. There are 6 lncRNAs and 25 related mRNAs including 36 lncRNA-mRNA links in lncRNA-mRNA co-expression network.

Conclusion: This research demonstrated that glycolysis-based lncRNAs possessed an important value in survival prediction of RCC patients, which would be a potential target for future treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fgene.2021.638980DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8047215PMC
April 2021

Inkjet Printing Transparent and Conductive MXene (TiC) Films: A Strategy for Flexible Energy Storage Devices.

ACS Appl Mater Interfaces 2021 Apr 12;13(15):17766-17780. Epub 2021 Apr 12.

Department of Materials Science and Engineering, College of Mechanics and Materials, Hohai University, Nanjing 211100, China.

MXene is a generic name for a large family of two-dimensional transition metal carbides or nitrides, which show great promise in the field of transparent supercapacitors. However, the manufacturing of supercapacitor electrodes with a high charge storage capacity and desirable transmittance is a challenging task. Herein, a low-cost, large-scale, and rapid preparation of flexible and transparent MXene films via inkjet printing is reported. The MXene films realized the sheet resistance () of 1.66 ± 0.16 MΩ sq to 1.47 ± 0.1 kΩ sq at the transmissivity of 87-24% (λ = 550 nm), respectively, corresponding to the figure of merit (the ratio of electronic to optical conductivity, σ/σ) of ∼0.0012 to 0.13. Furthermore, the potential of inkjet-printed transparent MXene films in transparent supercapacitors was assessed by electrochemical characterization. The MXene film, with a transmittance of 24%, exhibited a superior areal capacitance of 887.5 μF cm and retained 85% of the initial capacitance after 10,000 charge/discharge cycles at the scan rate of 10 mV s. Interestingly, the areal capacitance (192 μF cm) of an assembled symmetric MXene transparent supercapacitor, with a high transmittance of 73%, still surpasses the performance of previously reported graphene and single-walled carbon nanotube (SWCNT)-based transparent electrodes. The convenient manufacturing and superior electrochemical performance of inkjet-printed flexible and transparent MXene films widen the application horizon of this strategy for flexible energy storage devices.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsami.1c00724DOI Listing
April 2021

Magnetic porous CoNi@C derived from bamboo fiber combined with metal-organic-framework for enhanced electromagnetic wave absorption.

J Colloid Interface Sci 2021 Aug 24;595:78-87. Epub 2021 Mar 24.

NPU-NCP Joint International Research Center on Advanced Nanomaterials & Defects Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Solidification Processing, Shaanxi Engineering Laboratory for Graphene New Carbon Materials and Applications, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Xi an 710072, PR China.

In order to commit to the core concept of energy saving and emission reduction, the preparation of absorbing materials with sustainable development, light weight, strong absorption and wide absorption bandwidth has become an urgent problem that should be solved. As a natural product from nature, ubiquitous bamboo is combined with metal-organic framework on its surface through a simple chemical activation method is demostrated to be an effective method to prepare a composite absorbing material with amazing electromagnetic wave absorption. The prepared bamboo fiber/CoNi alloy (CN-ABF) reaches a minimum reflection loss of -75.19 dB at 11.12 GHz when the thickness is 2.66 mm, and the corresponding bandwidth is 4.56 GHz. The prepared CN-ABF greatly enhances the multi-polarity, dielectric loss, magnetic loss and impedance matching. Sustainable absorbing materials prepared by using biomass as a dielectric carbon-based recombined magnetic metal provide a good research strategy for improving the absorbing performance of materials.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcis.2021.03.109DOI Listing
August 2021

Deep THz modulation at Fabry-Perot resonances using graphene in periodic microslits.

Opt Express 2021 Feb;29(4):6199-6208

Potential applications of terahertz (THz) radiation are constantly being investigated for high-speed communication due to its large bandwidth. For example, frequency hopping communication technology would benefit from the large bandwidth. To attach the information to the carrier wave, THz modulators with deep and stable modulation at different frequencies are crucial, yet are still lacking. Here a THz modulator, designed by integrating a non-resonant field enhancement effect of periodic metal microslits to assist a Fabry-Perot resonance structure (MS-FP) is proposed and demonstrated. New equations are developed to describe the superior performance of the novel design. The >95% modulation depth is achieved by a SiO/Si gated graphene device at 14 Fabry-Perot resonant frequencies across 1.4 THz bandwidth, outperforming the recently reported 75% modulation depth THz modulator with a similar Fabry-Perot structure.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.413622DOI Listing
February 2021

Increased Levels of VCAM-1 in Sera and VLA-4 Expression on Neutrophils in Dermatomyositis with Interstitial Lung Disease.

Immunol Invest 2021 Mar 16:1-13. Epub 2021 Mar 16.

Department of Rheumatology and Immunology, First Affiliated Hospital, China Medical University, Shenyang, People's Republic of China.

Vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1) and its ligand very late antigen (VLA-4) play important roles in many autoimmune diseases. Our study aimed to investigate the serum level of VCAM-1 and VLA-4 expression on peripheral blood neutrophil surface in patients with dermatomyositis (DM), especially focusing on patients with interstitial lung disease (ILD). Blood specimens of 42 patients with DM and 42 healthy controls matched for age and gender were recruited. Total serum VCAM-1 level was measured using commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and the percentages of VLA-4 expression on neutrophils were analyzed by flow cytometry. We divided patients into subgroups according to whether they had ILD and whether they exhibited diffuse alveolar damage (DAD) via high-resolution computed tomography (HRCT). sVCAM-1 was increased in classical DM (cDM) and clinical amyopathic dermatomyositis (CADM) compared with healthy controls (both < .01). DM-ILD had higher sVCAM-1 levels than the none-ILD group ( < .01). sVCAM-1 was also significantly increased in the DAD group compared to the none-DAD group ( < .01). The percentages of VLA-4 expression on neutrophils in cDM and CADM patients were significantly elevated than that in healthy controls (both < .01). The percentage of VLA-4 expression on neutrophils in DM patients with ILD was higher than none-ILD group ( < .01). In the patients with ILD, DAD group had a higher percentage of VLA-4 expression on neutrophils than none-DAD group ( < .01). Our findings indicated that serum VCAM-1 levels combined with VLA-4 expression on neutrophils might be useful for detecting the severity of lung disease in patients with DM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08820139.2021.1897611DOI Listing
March 2021

Adipose Stem Cell-Derived Exosomes Recover Impaired Matrix Metabolism of Torn Human Rotator Cuff Tendons by Maintaining Tissue Homeostasis.

Am J Sports Med 2021 03;49(4):899-908

Department of Sports Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University Affiliated Sixth People's Hospital, Shanghai, China.

Background: Adipose stem cell-derived exosomes (ASC-Exos) are reported to effectively prevent muscle atrophy and degeneration of torn rat rotator cuff, but their influence on human samples and their potential mechanism are still unclear.

Purpose: We aimed to investigate the effects of ASC-Exos on the metabolic activities of torn human rotator cuff tendons and explore the potential mechanism behind it.

Study Design: Controlled laboratory study.

Methods: Diseased supraspinatus tendons were harvested from 15 patients with a mean ± SD age of 65.8 ± 3.2 years who underwent reverse shoulder arthroplasty for chronic rotator cuff tears associated with glenohumeral pathological changes. Each tendon was dissected into 3 × 4 × 4-mm explants: the ones derived from the same tendon were placed into 12-well plates and cultured in complete culture media (control) or in complete culture media supplemented with ASC-Exos for 72 hours. Afterward, the concentrations of cytokines secreted into the culture media-including interleukin 1β (IL-1β), IL-6, IL-8, and matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP-9)-were measured using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Tendons were stained with hematoxylin and eosin and immunohistochemistry (type I and III collagens) for histological analyses. Moreover, the expression of anabolic genes ( and ; type I and III collagen encoding) and catabolic genes ( and ) in tendons were measured using real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Phosphorylated AMPKα and Wnt/β-catenin pathways were assayed by western blotting to explore the potential mechanism of action of ASC-Exos.

Results: Secretion of proinflammatory cytokines, including IL-1β, IL-6, and MMP-9, was significantly reduced in the ASC-Exos group as compared with the control group. Supraspinatus tendons in the ASC-Exos group exhibited superior histological properties, as demonstrated by higher tendon maturing scores and more type I collagen content, but there was no significant difference in type III collagen content between groups. Expression of and genes was decreased in the ASC-Exos group versus the control group. Increased expression of type I and III collagens and an elevated type I/III ratio were found in the ASC-Exos group when compared with the control group. There was no significant difference in the secretion of IL-8 and expression of and genes between the ASC-Exos and control groups. Western blotting revealed that ASC-Exos enhanced phosphorylated AMPKα and decreased β-catenin levels to prevent tendon degeneration.

Conclusion: ASC-Exos maintained metabolic homeostasis of torn human rotator cuff tendons to improve their histological properties, which might be achieved by enhancing AMPK signaling to suppress Wnt/β-catenin activity.

Clinical Relevance: ASC-Exos could be used as an effective biological tool to promote healing in torn human rotator cuff tendons.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0363546521992469DOI Listing
March 2021

Next generation of anti-PD-L1 Atezolizumab with enhanced anti-tumor efficacy in vivo.

Sci Rep 2021 Mar 11;11(1):5774. Epub 2021 Mar 11.

AbMax BioPharmaceuticals Co., LTD, 99 Kechuang 14th Street, BDA, Beijing, 101111, China.

FDA-approved anti-PD-L1 antibody drug Atezolizumab is a human IgG1 without glycosylation by an N297A mutation. Aglycosylation of IgG1 has been used to completely remove the unwanted Fc-mediated functions such as antibody-dependent cytotoxicity (ADCC). However, aglycosylated Atezolizumab is very unstable and easy to form aggregation, which causes quick development of anti-drug antibody (ADA) in 41% of Atezolizumab-treated cancer patients, eventually leading to loss of efficacy. Here, we report the development of the anti-PD-L1 antibody drug Maxatezo, a glycosylated version of Atezolizumab, with no ADCC activity, better thermo-stability, and significantly improved anti-tumor activity in vivo. Using Atezolizumab as the starting template, we back-mutated A297N to re-install the glycosylation, and inserted a short, flexible amino acid sequence (GGGS) between G237 and G238 in the hinge region of the IgG1 heavy chain. Our data shows that insertion of GGGS, does not alter the anti-PD-L1's affinity and inhibitory activity, while completely abolishing ADCC activity. Maxatezo has a similar glycosylation profile and expression level (up to 5.4 g/L) as any normal human IgG1. Most importantly, Maxatezo's thermal stability is much better than Atezolizumab, as evidenced by dramatic increases of Tm1 from 63.55 °C to 71.01 °C and T from 60.7 °C to 71.2 °C. Furthermore, the levels of ADA in mice treated with Maxatezo were significantly lower compared with animals treated with Atezolizumab. Most importantly, at the same dose (10 mg/kg), the tumor growth inhibition rate of Maxatezo was 98%, compared to 68% for Atezolizumab.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-85329-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7952408PMC
March 2021

Acid Sphingomyelinase and Acid β-Glucosidase 1 Exert Opposite Effects on Interleukin-1β-Induced Interleukin 6 Production in Rheumatoid Arthritis Fibroblast-Like Synoviocytes.

Inflammation 2021 Mar 4. Epub 2021 Mar 4.

Department of Rheumatology and Immunology, The First Hospital of China Medical University, No.155 North Nanjing Street, Shenyang, 110001, China.

Acid sphingomyelinase (ASM) and acid β-glucosidase 1 (GBA1) catalyze ceramide formation through different routes, and both are involved in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) pathogenesis as well as IL-6 production. However, whether ASM and GBA1 regulate IL-6 production in RA remains unknown. Serum ASM, GBA1, and ceramide levels were measured in RA patients and healthy controls by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and their correlations with clinical indicators of patients were evaluated. Pharmacologic inhibitors or small hairpin RNAs of ASM and GBA1 were employed to explore the roles of ASM and GBA1 in IL-6 production, cell behavior, and MAPK signaling in fibroblast-like synoviocytes from RA patients (RAFLS). ASM, GBA1, and ceramide serum levels were significantly elevated in patients with RA. GBA1 and ceramide serum levels were negatively and positively correlated with IL-6 serum level in RA patients, respectively. ASM inhibitor or knockdown of ASM abolished IL-1β-induced IL-6 expression and secretion. Functionally, ASM inhibitor suppressed IL-1β-induced cell proliferation, migration, and invasion in RAFLS. Mechanistically, ASM inhibitor or knockdown of ASM effectively countered IL-1β-induced activation of p38 MAPK signaling. The pharmacologic inhibitor or knockdown of GBA1 exhibited the opposite effects. Importantly, p38 inhibitor blocked IL-1β-induced IL-6 production in RAFLS. ASM plays a pathogenic role in RA, whereas GBA1 plays a protective role in RA possibly by regulating IL-6 production in RAFLS at least partially via p38 signaling, serving as potential therapeutic targets in RA treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10753-021-01444-9DOI Listing
March 2021

Quantitative analysis of bisphenol analogue mixtures by terahertz spectroscopy using machine learning method.

Food Chem 2021 Aug 19;352:129313. Epub 2021 Feb 19.

National-Regional Key Technology Engineering Laboratory for Medical Ultrasound, Guangdong, Key Laboratory for Biomedical Measurements and Ultrasound Imaging, Department of Biomedical Engineering, School of Medicine, Shenzhen University, Shenzhen 518060, China. Electronic address:

Quantitative analysis of complex mixtures is a great challenge for spectral analysis. Bisphenol A (BpA) is a chemical predominantly used in manufacturing and is being replaced by other analogs due to its potential toxicity. Reliability methods is hence crucial for identification and quantification of bisphenol mixtures. In this study we present an attractive strategy for composition determination of BpA incorporated in its analogue mixtures. Terahertz spectra of four bisphenol components are analyzed using machine learning method (SVR) to learn the underlying model of the frequency against the target concentration of BpA in mixtures. The learned mode predicts the concentrations of the unknown samples with decision coefficient R = 0.98. Absorption spectra for bisphenols mixtures were successfully reconstructed by a hold-out validation scheme. The results indicate the terahertz spectroscopy in combination with SVR is robust and accurate in mixture quantitative analysis and should play a significant role for industrial applications in the future.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2021.129313DOI Listing
August 2021

The value of endoscopic resection for non-ampullary duodenal lesions: A single-center experience.

Saudi J Gastroenterol 2021 Feb 12. Epub 2021 Feb 12.

Department of Endoscopy, National Cancer Center/National Clinical Research Center for Cancer/Cancer Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, China.

Background: To observe and preliminarily evaluate the efficacy and safety of endoscopic mucosal resection (EMR) and endoscopic submucosal dissection (ESD) in the treatment of non-ampullary duodenal lesions (NADLs).

Methods: This retrospective observational study included 84 patients who underwent endoscopic resection (ER) with non-ampullary duodenal lesions, between March 2010 and November 2020, at the Cancer Hospital of the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences (Beijing, China). Data on patient demographics, therapeutic outcomes, and follow-up results were analyzed.

Results: There were 44 patients undergoing EMR, and 40 patients accepting ESD. The overall en bloc resection rate was 98.8% (83/84). For the neoplastic lesions, the overall en bloc resection rate and curative rate were 98.5% (67/68) and 89.7% (61/68), respectively. The procedure-related bleeding and perforation rates were 2.4% and 10.7%, respectively. Univariate analysis results indicated that the main correlation factor of non-curative pathologic resection was tumor size (p = 0.004) and resection size (P < 0.01). There showed a higher curative rate in patients with tumors less than 25 mm in diameter. Multivariate logistic regression analyses determined that the tumor size (OR 0.935; 95% CI 0.878-0.995; P = 0.035) was associated with non-curative resection. No recurrences were observed in patients who had undergone a complete ER during a follow-up period of 42.8 months (range, 3-127 months).

Conclusion: Endoscopic resection is an effective, safe, and feasible treatment for non-ampullary duodenal lesions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4103/sjg.sjg_646_20DOI Listing
February 2021

Light-responsive dual-functional biodegradable mesoporous silica nanoparticles with drug delivery and lubrication enhancement for the treatment of osteoarthritis.

Nanoscale 2021 Apr 25;13(13):6394-6399. Epub 2021 Feb 25.

State Key Laboratory of Tribology, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China.

Visible light-responsive dual-functional biodegradable mesoporous silica nanoparticles with drug delivery and lubrication enhancement were constructed by supramolecular interaction between azobenzene-modified mesoporous silica nanoparticles (bMSNs-AZO) and β-cyclodextrin-modified poly(2-methacryloyloxyethyl phosphorylcholine) (CD-PMPC). Visible light could effectively trigger azobenzene isomerization and thus induce drug release after passing through the dermal tissue. Additionally, the hydration layer formed by CD-PMPC on the surface of the nanoparticles played an important role in lubrication enhancement, which was beneficial for the treatment of osteoarthritis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d0nr08887kDOI Listing
April 2021

Intestinal fatty acid-binding protein as a biomarker for the diagnosis of strangulated intestinal obstruction: A meta-analysis.

Open Med (Wars) 2021 2;16(1):264-273. Epub 2021 Feb 2.

Emergency Department, Affiliated Hospital of Inner Mongolia Medical University, Hohhot 010050, Inner Mongolia, China.

Objective: The purpose of this study was to clarify the value of intestinal fatty acid-binding protein (I-FABP) for the early diagnosis of strangulated intestinal obstruction through a meta-analysis.

Methods: A search was performed on PubMed, EBSCO, the Cochrane Library, the Web of Science, EMBASE, CNKI, and WanFang for studies on the diagnosis of strangulated intestinal obstruction based on I-FABP. Endnote X9 software and the quality assessment of diagnostic accuracy studies 2 (QUADAS-2) were used to screen the studies and evaluate their quality, respectively. Meta-Disc 1.4 and Stata 15.1 software were used to perform the assessment of heterogeneity and meta-analysis.

Result: A total of eight studies were included, Spearman correlation coefficient was 0.703 ( = 0.078), suggesting that there was no threshold effect. The pooled results of the meta-analysis were as follows: sensitivity: 0.75 (95% CI: 0.66-0.81), specificity: 0.83 (95% CI: 0.71-0.91), positive likelihood ratio (PLR): 4.35 (95% CI: 2.57-7.36), negative likelihood ratio (NLR): 0.31 (95% CI: 0.24-0.39), and diagnostic odds ratio (DOR): 14.19 (95% CI: 8.08-24.92). The area under the curve was 0.83. There was obvious heterogeneity among the studies.

Conclusion: I-FABP is very valuable for the early diagnosis of strangulated intestinal obstruction and can be used to distinguish strangulated intestinal obstruction from intestinal obstruction in a timely manner, enabling accurate planning of the timing of surgery.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1515/med-2021-0214DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7885302PMC
February 2021

Association between physical activity and risk of obstructive sleep apnea.

Sleep Breath 2021 Feb 13. Epub 2021 Feb 13.

Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, Sun Yat-sen University, 2F, Block 20, No.74, Zhongshan Second Road, Guangzhou, 510080, China.

Purpose: This aim of this study was to investigate the association of physical activity with OSA risk among adult Chinese.

Methods: Participants were selected from baseline survey of the Guangzhou Heart Study. OSA was ascertained by using Berlin Questionnaire, and the physical activity, including leisure-time physical activity (LTPA), occupational activity, and transport activity, was measured with modified Global Physical Activity Questionnaire. Principal component analysis was used to extract the patterns of LTPA with varimax orthogonal transformation. Odds ratios (OR) with 95% confidence interval (95% CI) were calculated by using the logistic regression method.

Results: For all 9733 participants, aged 35 to 74 years, LTPA (high vs. inactive, OR: 0.81, 95% CI: 0.64-1.03), occupational activity (vigorous vs. retirement, OR:1.28, 95% CI: 0.93-1.75) and transport activity (high vs. retirement, OR: 1.05, 95% CI: 0.69-1.60) were not associated with OSA risk after considering potential confounders. Any specific component of LTPA and two LTPA patterns were also not associated with OSA risk. Stratified analysis yielded similar nonsignificant association of OSA risk with three dimensions of physical activity in both the retirement group and non-retirement group.

Conclusion: This study found that three dimensions of physical activity, including LTPA, transport activity, and occupational activity, were not associated with any risk of OSA. Future studies with longitudinal design are needed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11325-021-02318-yDOI Listing
February 2021

Association between hepatitis B and E virus infection and hepatocellular carcinoma risk.

Int J Cancer 2021 Jun 20;148(12):2974-2981. Epub 2021 Feb 20.

Department of Infectious Disease, Guangdong Provincial People's Hospital, Guangdong Academy of Medical Sciences, Guangzhou, Guangdong, China.

The role of hepatitis E virus (HEV) in developing hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is unclear. Our study aimed to investigate the role of HE infection in HCC development and the effect of hepatitis B virus (HBV) and HEV coinfection on HCC risk. A hospital-based case-control study was conducted. A total of 474 eligible HCC cases and 586 control patients were successfully recruited. The fasting venous blood was collected from the patients at the first visited to hospital and HBV infection and HEV infection were examined within 5 days. Crude and adjusted odd ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence interval (95% CI) were estimated by using logistic regression model. HBV infection (OR: 63.10, 95% CI: 42.02-97.26) rather than HEV infection (OR: 1.08, 95% CI: 0.721-1.65) was associated with an increased risk of HCC after adjustment for confounders. The association between HBV infection and HCC risk was more remarkable in male (OR: 72.61, 95% CI: 45.10-121.38) than in female (OR: 61.89, 95% CI: 25.74-169.26). In comparison with patients who infected with neither HEV nor HBV, those who infected with only HBV (OR: 69.62, 95% CI: 40.90-123.52) and who coinfected with HEV and HBV (OR: 67.48, 95% CI:37.23-128.19) were significantly associated with an increased risk after adjustment for potential confounders. The results showed that HBV infection rather than HEV infection was associated with an increased risk of HCC, and the HEV infection may alleviate the promoting impact of HBV on HCC development.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ijc.33505DOI Listing
June 2021

Molecular Mechanism of Lipid Accumulation and Metabolism of Oleaginous GD from Soil under Salt Stress.

Int J Mol Sci 2021 Jan 28;22(3). Epub 2021 Jan 28.

School of Life Science, Shanxi University, Taiyuan 030006, China.

The oleaginous microalgae species GD is a promising feedstock for biodiesel production from soil. However, its metabolic mechanism of lipid production remains unclear. In this study, the lipid accumulation and metabolism mechanisms of GD were analyzed under salt stress based on transcriptome sequencing. The biomass and lipid content of the alga strain were determined under different NaCl concentrations, and total RNA from fresh cells were isolated and sequenced by HiSeq 2000 high throughput sequencing technology. As the salt concentration increased in culture medium, the algal lipid content increased but the biomass decreased. Following transcriptome sequencing by assembly and splicing, 24,128 unigenes were annotated, with read lengths mostly distributed in the 200-300 bp interval. Statistically significant differentially expressed unigenes were observed in different experimental groups, with 2051 up-regulated genes and 1835 down-regulated genes. The lipid metabolism pathway analysis showed that, under salt stress, gene-related fatty acid biosynthesis (ACCase, KASII, KAR, HAD, FATA) was significantly up-regulated, but some gene-related fatty acid degradation was significantly down-regulated. The comprehensive results showed that salt concentration can affect the lipid accumulation and metabolism of GD, and the lipid accumulation is closely related to the fatty acid synthesis pathway.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms22031304DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7865546PMC
January 2021

Design of Variable Spray System for Plant Protection UAV Based on CFD Simulation and Regression Analysis.

Sensors (Basel) 2021 Jan 18;21(2). Epub 2021 Jan 18.

College of Information Engineering, Sichuan Agricultural University, Ya'an 625000, China.

Multi-rotor unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for plant protection are widely used in China's agricultural production. However, spray droplets often drift and distribute nonuniformly, thereby harming its utilization and the environment. A variable spray system is designed, discussed, and verified to solve this problem. The distribution characteristics of droplet deposition under different spray states (flight state, environment state, nozzle state) are obtained through computational fluid dynamics simulation. In the verification experiment, the wind velocity error of most sample points is less than 1 m/s, and the deposition ratio error is less than 10%, indicating that the simulation is reliable. A simulation data set is used to train support vector regression and back propagation neural network with multiple parameters. An optimal regression model with the root mean square error of 6.5% is selected. The UAV offset and nozzle flow of the variable spray system can be obtained in accordance with the current spray state by multi-sensor fusion and the predicted deposition distribution characteristics. The farmland experiment shows that the deposition volume error between the prediction and experiment is within 30%, thereby proving the effectiveness of the system. This article provides a reference for the improvement of UAV intelligent spray system.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/s21020638DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7831310PMC
January 2021

Analysis of Adaptive Evolution and Coevolution of L Gene in the Genus (Rhodophyta).

Evol Bioinform Online 2020 16;16:1176934320977862. Epub 2020 Dec 16.

School of Life Science, Shanxi Key Laboratory for Research and Development of Regional Plants, Shanxi University, Taiyuan, China.

The adaptive evolution and coevolution of the ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase large subunit (L) gene in the genus were studied based on phylogenetic tree construction and the physicochemical properties and the secondary structures of protein encoded by L (Rubisco large subunit) were analyzed. The amino acids compositions and grand average of hydropathicity of freshwater and marine were similar. Rubisco large subunit of was hydrophilic and the secondary structure was primarily composed of α-helixes and β-sheets, revealing the relatively stable structure of this protein. The predicted phosphorylation sites in and were 33 and 36, respectively. No positive selection sites were detected in the genus , implying that L gene evolved either neutrally or under purifying selection. A total of 41 coevolutionary groups were detected in the Rubisco large subunit of and the coevolving sites are in closer proximity in 3-dimensional structure of the protein. Despite the long evolutionary history, L gene in genus under different environments is rather conservative.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1176934320977862DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7747100PMC
December 2020

TREM-1 promoted apoptosis and inhibited autophagy in LPS-treated HK-2 cells through the NF-κB pathway.

Int J Med Sci 2021 1;18(1):8-17. Epub 2021 Jan 1.

Department of Critical Care Medicine, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Peking Union Medical College & Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Beijing 100730, China.

Triggering receptor expressed by myeloid cells (TREM-1) is an amplifier of inflammatory responses triggered by bacterial or fungal infection. Soluble TREM-1 (sTREM-1) expression was found to be upregulated in sepsis-associated acute kidney injury (SA-AKI) and predicted to be a potential biomarker. However, the mechanism remains unclear. The human kidney-2 (HK-2) cell line was treated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and used to examine the potential roles of TREM-1 in apoptosis and autophagy. A cell viability assay was employed to assess the number of viable cells and as a measure of the proliferative index. The concentrations of sTREM-1, interleukin (IL)-1β, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNFα) and IL-6 in cell-free culture supernatants were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Western blot analysis was performed to analyze apoptosis, autophagy and the relevant signaling pathways. The results suggested that TREM-1 overexpression after LPS treatment decreased proliferation and increased apoptosis. The concentrations of sTREM-1, IL-1β, TNFα and IL-6 in cell-free culture supernatants were increased in the TREM-1 overexpression group after LPS treatment. Expression of the antiapoptotic gene Bcl-2 was downregulated in the TREM-1 overexpression group, while that of the proapoptotic genes Bax, cleaved caspase-3 and cleaved caspase-9 was upregulated. Overexpression of TREM-1 downregulated expression of the autophagy genes Beclin-1, Atg-5 and LC3b and increased the gene expression of p62, which inhibits autophagy. Conversely, treatment with TREM-1-specific shRNA had the opposite effects. The nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) signaling pathway (P-p65/p65 and P-IκBα/IκBα) in LPS-induced HK-2 cells was regulated by TREM-1. In summary, TREM-1 promoted apoptosis and inhibited autophagy in HK-2 cells in the context of LPS exposure potentially through the NF-κB pathway.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7150/ijms.50893DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7738954PMC
January 2021

Exploring the Neural Structures Underlying the Procedural Memory Network as Predictors of Language Ability in Children and Adolescents With Autism Spectrum Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

Front Hum Neurosci 2020 10;14:587019. Epub 2020 Dec 10.

Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Toronto, ON, Canada.

: There is significant overlap in the type of structural language impairments exhibited by children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This similarity suggests that the cognitive impairment(s) contributing to the structural language deficits in ASD and ADHD may be shared. Previous studies have speculated that procedural memory deficits may be the shared cognitive impairment. The procedural deficit hypothesis (PDH) argues that language deficits can be explained by differences in the neural structures underlying the procedural memory network. This hypothesis is based on the premise that the neural structures comprising the procedural network support language learning. In this study, we aimed to test the PDH in children with ASD, ADHD, and typical development (TD). : One hundred and sixty-three participants (ages 10-21): 91 with ASD, 26 with ADHD, and 46 with TD, completed standardized measures of cognitive and language ability as well as structural magnetic resonance imaging. We compared the structural language abilities, the neural structures underlying the procedural memory network, and the relationship between structural language and neural structure across diagnostic groups. : Our analyses revealed that while the structural language abilities differed across ASD, ADHD, and TD groups, the thickness, area, and volume of the structures supporting the procedural memory network were not significantly different between diagnostic groups. Also, several neural structures were associated with structural language abilities across diagnostic groups. Only two of these structures, the inferior frontal gyrus, and the left superior parietal gyrus, are known to be linked to the procedural memory network. : The inferior frontal gyrus and the left superior parietal gyrus, have well-established roles in language learning independent of their role as part of the procedural memory system. Other structures such as the caudate and cerebellum, with critical roles in the procedural memory network, were not associated with structural language abilities across diagnostic groups. It is unclear whether the procedural memory network plays a fundamental role in language learning in ASD, ADHD, and TD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fnhum.2020.587019DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7759764PMC
December 2020

Promotion of collagen deposition during skin healing through Smad3/mTOR pathway by parathyroid hormone-loaded microneedle.

Mater Sci Eng C Mater Biol Appl 2021 Feb 27;119:111446. Epub 2020 Aug 27.

Department of Orthopaedics, Shanghai Jiao Tong University Affiliated Sixth People's Hospital, Shanghai 200233, China. Electronic address:

Skin wounds are associated with huge economic and emotional burdens for millions of people annually and are a challenge for health workers worldwide. At present, for skin defects after traumatic accidents, especially large-area skin defects, newly developed strategies such as the use of emerging biomaterials and cell therapy could be considered as options besides classic skin grafts. However, the new strategies have to deal with problems such as immune rejection and high costs for patients. An insufficient understanding of the mechanisms of skin wound healing further hinders the development of innovative treatment approaches. In this study, we developed a parathyroid hormone (PTH)-loaded phase-transition microneedle (PTMN) patch to deliver PTH subcutaneously in an efficient manner and change microneedle patch daily to achieve intermittent and systematic drug administration. By evaluating wound closure, re-epithelialization, collagen deposition, and extracellular matrix (ECM) expression in a Sprague-Dawley rat model of traumatic skin wounds, we demonstrated that intermittent systemic administration of PTH using our PTMN patches accelerated skin wound healing. Further, we demonstrated that the use of the patch may accelerate skin wound healing depending on the activation of the transforming growth factor (TGF)-β/Smad3/mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) cascade pathway. Our results suggest that the PTH-loaded PTMN patch may be a novel therapeutic strategy for treating skin wounds.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.msec.2020.111446DOI Listing
February 2021

Analysis of Adaptive Evolution and Coevolution of rbcL Gene in the Genus Galdieria (Rhodophyta).

J Eukaryot Microbiol 2021 Mar 6;68(2):e12838. Epub 2021 Jan 6.

School of Life Science, Shanxi University, Taiyuan, 030006, China.

To research the adaptive evolution and coevolution of the rbcL gene in the genus Galdieria, 36 sequences were selected. The bioinformatics of proteins encoded by rbcL genes of Galdieria were analyzed, and phylogenetic trees were constructed by the maximum-likelihood method. Then, adaptive evolution and coevolution were analyzed. The phylogenetic tree showed that the inner groups were clustered into four branches, in which the sequences of Galdieria maxima were divided into two small branches, and the posterior probability of each branch is above 94.9%. Eleven reliable positive selection sites were detected in the branched-site model, indicating that the rbcL protein-coding gene of Galdieria underwent adaptive evolution to adapt to extreme environments. Site 269 F is located in the loop 6 domain, while sites 272 D and 273 W are located in the 6-helix structure. Many coevolution pairs were detected, which were closely related to the hydrophobic and molecular weight correlation values of amino acids. The results are helpful to research the evolution process of freshwater red algae, to explore the changes of its essential genes and protein functions to adapt to different environmental pressures, and to understand the close relationship between amino acids in proteins and the molecular mechanism of evolution.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jeu.12838DOI Listing
March 2021

CHAF1A overexpression in human retinoblastoma promotes cell proliferation and suppresses apoptosis.

J BUON 2020 Sep-Oct;25(5):2510-2514

Department of Ophthalmology, Affilated Zhongshan Hospital of Dalian University, Dalian 116001, China.

Purpose: Retinoblastoma causes significant human mortality especially in children. Although retinoblastoma may be treated if detected at early stage, however, it becomes destructive at advanced stages. The treatment involves surgery and chemotherapy. However, the chemotherapeutic agents have severe adverse effects. Therefore, development of viable drugs and identification of novel molecular therapeutic targets may enable efficient management of retinoblastoma. This study was designed to examine the expression profile of Chromatin Assembly Factor-1 (CHAF1A) and explore its therapeutic implications in retinoblastoma.

Methods: The expression of CHAF1A was determined by qRT-PCR. MTT assay was used for the determination of the cell viability. Apoptosis was detected by acridine orange (AO)/ethidium bromide (EB) and annexin V/propidium iodide (PI) assay. Cell cycle analysis was determined by flow cytometery. Protein expression was determined by western blot analysis.

Results: The results showed that CHAF1A is significantly upregulated in human retinoblastoma, with 7.3 folds upregulation in retinoblastoma cells relative to normal cells. Knockdown of CHAF1A resulted in significant decline in the viability of the RB355 retinoblastoma cells. The flow cytometric analysis showed that knockdown of CHAF1A caused arrest of the RB355 cells at G0/G1 phase of the cell cycle. This was also linked with significant downregulation of cyclin D1 and cyclin E1. The AO/EB staining assay showed that CHAF1A knockdown promotes apoptosis which is associated with downregulation of Bcl-2 and upregulation of Bax.

Conclusion: Taken together, these results suggest that CHAF1A is upregulated in retinoblastoma and regulates its proliferation and apoptosis. As such CHAF1A may act as biomarker as well as therapeutic target for the management of retinoblastoma.
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December 2020

Factor Structure of Repetitive Behaviors Across Autism Spectrum Disorder and Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder.

J Autism Dev Disord 2020 Nov 24. Epub 2020 Nov 24.

Department of Psychology, Western University, London, ON, Canada.

Restricted interests and repetitive behaviors (RRBs) are core symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and commonly occur in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Little is known about how RRBs manifest in ADHD. We quantified and compared factor structures of RRBs in children with ASD (n = 634) or ADHD (n = 448), and related factors to sex and IQ. A four-factor solution emerged, including Stereotypy, Self-Injury, Compulsions, and Ritualistic/Sameness. Factor structures were equivalent across diagnoses, though symptoms were more severe in ASD. IQ negatively correlated with Stereotypy, Self-Injury, and Compulsions in ASD, and negatively correlated with Compulsions and Ritualistic/Sameness behaviors in ADHD. In ASD only, females exhibited higher Self-Injury. Thus, patterns of RRBs are preserved across ASD and ADHD, but severity and relationship with IQ differed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10803-020-04800-0DOI Listing
November 2020

Beyond diagnosis: Cross-diagnostic features in canonical resting-state networks in children with neurodevelopmental disorders.

Neuroimage Clin 2020 27;28:102476. Epub 2020 Oct 27.

Autism Research Centre, Bloorview Research Institute, Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Toronto, ON, Canada; Department of Paediatrics, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada.

Children with neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs) share common behavioural manifestations despite distinct categorical diagnostic criteria. Here, we examined canonical resting-state network connectivity in three diagnostic groups (autism spectrum disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and paediatric obsessive-compulsive disorder) and typically developing controls (TD) in a large single-site sample (N = 407), applying diagnosis-based and dimensional approaches to understand underlying neurobiology across NDDs. Each participant's functional network graphs were computed using five graph metrics. In diagnosis-based comparisons, an analysis of covariance was performed to compare all NDDs to TD, followed by pairwise comparisons between NDDs. In the dimensional approach, participants' functional network graphs were correlated with continuous behavioural measures, and a data-driven k-means clustering analysis was applied to determine if subgroups of participants were seen, without diagnostic information having been included. In the diagnosis-based comparisons, children with NDDs did not differ significantly from the TD group and the NDD categorical groups also did not differ significantly from each other, across all graph metrics. In the dimensional, diagnostic-independent approach, however, subcortical functional connectivity was significantly correlated with participants' general adaptive functioning across all participants. The clustering analysis identified an optimal solution of two clusters, and participants assigned in the same data-driven cluster were highly heterogeneous in diagnosis. Neither cluster exclusively contained a specific diagnostic group, nor did NDDs separate cleanly from TDs. Each participant's distance ratio between the two clusters was significantly correlated with general adaptive functioning, social deficits and attentional problems. Our results suggest the neurobiological similarity and dissimilarity between NDDs need to be investigated beyond DSM/ICD-based, behaviourally-defined diagnostic categories.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nicl.2020.102476DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7649647PMC
October 2020

Sex Differences in Age of Diagnosis and First Concern among Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

J Clin Child Adolesc Psychol 2020 Nov 2:1-11. Epub 2020 Nov 2.

Department of Psychiatry, Western University.

Objective: Early identification of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is an essential healthcare priority. Girls may be at risk for late diagnosis, although research is equivocal regarding how sex and other factors relate to ASD identification. The goals of the current investigation were to (1) identify how child sex, cognitive abilities, and demographic factors relate to age of first concern (AOC) and age of diagnosis (AOD), (2) evaluate trends in AOC/AOD over time, and (3) consider whether main effects of sex on AOC/AOD are moderated by cognitive abilities or time.

Method: Children (N = 365; 20% female; 85.6% identified as White) with ASD participated through the Province of Ontario Neurodevelopmental Disorders (POND) Network. Study records included AOD, date/timing of diagnosis (between 1996 and 2017), age of first parent concern, demographics, and standardized cognitive testing results (24.7% of children had IQ scores below standard scores of 70).

Results: Average AOC occurred before 2 years of age whereas average AOD occurred after 5 years of age. Girls did not differ on AOC but had a later AOD than boys. Higher verbal IQ was associated with later AOD more strongly in girls than boys. Regarding time-related changes, average AOC and AOD increased across the study period, more strongly for girls.

Conclusions: Results support that sex is a key factor underlying delays in ASD identification and highlight the urgent need to improve diagnostic practices among girls. Limitations and implications for improving the diagnostic process are discussed.

ASD=autism spectrum disorder; IQ=intelligence quotient; AOC=parental report of age of first concern; AOD=age of diagnosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15374416.2020.1823850DOI Listing
November 2020