Publications by authors named "Yu Zou"

298 Publications

Alterations of brain metrics in fetuses of women with polycystic ovary syndrome : a retrospective study based on fetal magnetic resonance imaging.

BMC Pregnancy Childbirth 2021 Aug 14;21(1):557. Epub 2021 Aug 14.

Women's Hospital, School of Medicine, Zhejiang University, 1 Xueshi Road, Zhejiang, 310006, Hangzhou, China.

Background: Maternal polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) has potential detrimental effects on the neurodevelopment of offspring. This study aimed to evaluate the brain metrics in fetuses of women with PCOS based on fetal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Methods: This retrospective study included 60 pregnant women with PCOS (PCOS group) and 120 pregnant non-PCOS women (control group). Fetal MRI was performed followed an ultrasound and for numerous clinical indications including known or suspected fetal pathology, history of fetal abnormality in previous pregnancy or in a family member. Fetal brain biometry and apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) value were analysed.

Results: After adjusting for potential confounders, fetuses in the PCOS group showed the following characteristics compared to fetuses in the control group: (1) smaller cerebral fronto-occipital diameter (FOD), vermian height (VH) and anteroposterior diameter of the pons (APDP) (evident before 32 weeks; P = 0.042, P = 0.002 and P = 0.016, respectively); (2) larger left and right biparietal index (evident before 32 weeks; P = 0.048 and P = 0.025, respectively); (3) smaller left lateral ventricle (LV) (evident after 32 weeks; P = 0.005); (4) larger anteroposterior diameter of the vermis (APDV) and hippocampal infolding angle (HIA) (evident after 32 weeks; P = 0.003 and P < 0.001, respectively); (5) higher ADC value in frontal white matter (FWM) and in basal ganglia (BG) (evident before and after 32 weeks; all P < 0.05).

Conclusions: There exist a different pattern of brain metrics in PCOS offspring in utero.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12884-021-04015-wDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8364105PMC
August 2021

Plasmonic-redox controlled atom transfer radical polymerization.

Chem Commun (Camb) 2021 Sep 11;57(70):8766-8769. Epub 2021 Aug 11.

Department of Polymer Materials, College of Materials Science and Engineering, Shanghai University, Nanchen Street 333, Shanghai, 200444, China.

Plasmonic-ATRP has been developed in which Cu(i) species are (re)generated via photo-redox reactions both directly by hot electrons and indirectly by hot holes, in which the polymerization degree and molecular weight can be regulated by controlling the rate of plasmonic hot carrier extraction.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d1cc03179aDOI Listing
September 2021

DIA-Based Quantitative Proteomics Reveals the Protein Regulatory Networks of Floral Thermogenesis in .

Int J Mol Sci 2021 Jul 31;22(15). Epub 2021 Jul 31.

State Key Laboratory of Hybrid Rice, Department of Genetics, College of Life Sciences, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China.

The sacred lotus () can maintain a stable floral chamber temperature between 30 and 35 °C when blooming despite fluctuations in ambient temperatures between about 8 and 45 °C, but the regulatory mechanism of floral thermogenesis remains unclear. Here, we obtained comprehensive protein profiles from receptacle tissue at five developmental stages using data-independent acquisition (DIA)-based quantitative proteomics technology to reveal the molecular basis of floral thermogenesis of . A total of 6913 proteins were identified and quantified, of which 3513 differentially abundant proteins (DAPs) were screened. Among them, 640 highly abundant proteins during the thermogenic stages were mainly involved in carbon metabolism processes such as the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle. Citrate synthase was identified as the most connected protein in the protein-protein interaction (PPI) network. Next, the content of alternative oxidase (AOX) and plant uncoupling protein (pUCP) in different tissues indicated that AOX was specifically abundant in the receptacles. Subsequently, a protein module highly related to the thermogenic phenotype was identified by the weighted gene co-expression network analysis (WGCNA). In summary, the regulation mechanism of floral thermogenesis in involves complex regulatory networks, including TCA cycle metabolism, starch and sucrose metabolism, fatty acid degradation, and ubiquinone synthesis, etc.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms22158251DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8347412PMC
July 2021

Unfixed Movement Route Model, Non-Overcrowding and Social Distancing Reduce the Spread of COVID-19 in Sporting Facilities.

Int J Environ Res Public Health 2021 08 3;18(15). Epub 2021 Aug 3.

Department of Sport and Exercise Science, College of Education, Zhejiang University, 886 Yuhangtang Road, Hangzhou 310058, China.

Localized outbreaks of COVID-19 have been reported in sporting facilities. This study used the Agent-based Modeling (ABM) method to analyze the transmission rate of COVID-19 in different sporting models, sporting spaces per capita, and situations of gathering, which contributes to understanding how COVID-19 transmits in sports facilities. The simulation results show that the transmission rate of COVID-19 was higher under the Fixed Movement Route (FMR) than under the Unfixed Movement Route (UMR) in 10 different sporting spaces per capita (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10 m) ( = 0.000). For both FMR and UMR, the larger the sporting space per capita, the lower the virus transmission rate. Additionally, when the sporting space per capita increases from 4 m to 5 m, the virus transmission rate decreases most significantly ( = 0.000). In the FMR model with a per capita sporting space of 5 m, minimizing gathering (no more than three people) could significantly slow down the transmission rate of the COVID-19 virus ( < 0.05). This study concluded that: (1) The UMR model is suggested in training facilities or playing grounds; (2) The sporting space should be non-overcrowding, and it is recommended that the sporting space per capita in the sporting grounds should not be less than 5 m; (3) It is important to maintain safe social distancing and minimize gathering (no more than three people) when exercising.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18158212DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8346128PMC
August 2021

PGE2-JNK signaling axis non-canonically promotes Gli activation by protecting Gli2 from ubiquitin-proteasomal degradation.

Cell Death Dis 2021 07 15;12(7):707. Epub 2021 Jul 15.

Department of Pharmacology, School of Pharmacy, Fudan University, 201203, Shanghai, China.

Both bench and bedside investigations have challenged the supportive role of Hedgehog (Hh) activity in the progression of colorectal cancers, thus raising a critical need to further deeply determine the contribution of Hh to the growth of colorectal cancer. Combining multiple complementary means, including in vitro and in vivo inflammatory colorectal cancer models, and pathological analysis of clinical colorectal cancer patients samples. We report that colorectal cancer cells hijack prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) to non-canonically promote Hh transcriptional factor Gli activity and Gli-dependent proliferation of colorectal cancer cells in a Smo-independent manner. Mechanistically, PGE2 activates c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), which in turn enables Gli2 to evade ubiquitin-proteasomal degradation by phosphorylating Gli2 at Thr1546. This study not only presents evidence for understanding the contribution of Hh to colorectal cancers, but also provides a novel molecular portrait underlying how PGE2-activated JNK fine-tunes the evasion of Gli2 from ubiquitin-proteasomal degradation. Therefore, it proposes a rationale for the future evaluation of chemopreventive and selective therapeutic strategies for colorectal cancers by targeting PGE2-JNK-Gli signaling route.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41419-021-03995-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8282835PMC
July 2021

Genome and population evolution and environmental adaptation of on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau.

Zool Res 2021 07;42(4):502-513

Institute of Fisheries Science, Tibet Academy of Agricultural and Animal Husbandry Sciences, Lhasa, Tibet 810000, China.

Persistent uplift means the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP) is an ideal natural laboratory to investigate genome evolution and adaptation within highland environments. However, how paleogeographic and paleoclimatic events influence the genome and population of endemic fish species remains unclear. is an ancient endemic fish found on the QTP and the only critically endangered species in the Sisoridae family. Here, we found that major transposons in the genome showed episodic bursts, consistent with contemporaneous geological and climatic events during the QTP formation. Notably, histone genes showed significant expansion in the genome, which may be mediated by long interspersed nuclear elements (LINE) repetitive element duplications. Population analysis showed that ancestral populations experienced two significant depressions 2.6 million years ago (Mya) and 10 000 years ago, exhibiting excellent synchronization with Quaternary glaciation and the Younger Dryas, respectively. Thus, we propose that paleogeography and paleoclimate were dominating driving forces for population dynamics in endemic fish on the QTP. Tectonic movements and temperature fluctuation likely destroyed the habitat and disrupted the drainage connectivity among populations. These factors may have caused severe bottlenecks and limited migration among ancestral populations, resulting in the low genetic diversity and endangered status of the species today.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2021.096DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8317186PMC
July 2021

3DPhenoFish: Application for two- and three-dimensional fish morphological phenotype extraction from point cloud analysis.

Zool Res 2021 Jul;42(4):492-501

Institute of Fisheries Science, Tibet Academy of Agricultural and Animal Husbandry Sciences, Lhasa, Tibet 850000, China.

Fish morphological phenotypes are important resources in artificial breeding, functional gene mapping, and population-based studies in aquaculture and ecology. Traditional morphological measurement of phenotypes is rather expensive in terms of time and labor. More importantly, manual measurement is highly dependent on operational experience, which can lead to subjective phenotyping results. Here, we developed 3DPhenoFish software to extract fish morphological phenotypes from three-dimensional (3D) point cloud data. Algorithms for background elimination, coordinate normalization, image segmentation, key point recognition, and phenotype extraction were developed and integrated into an intuitive user interface. Furthermore, 18 key points and traditional 2D morphological traits, along with 3D phenotypes, including area and volume, can be automatically obtained in a visualized manner. Intuitive fine-tuning of key points and customized definitions of phenotypes are also allowed in the software. Using 3DPhenoFish, we performed high-throughput phenotyping for four endemic Schizothoracinae species, including , , , and . Results indicated that the morphological phenotypes from 3DPhenoFish exhibited high linear correlation (>0.94) with manual measurements and offered informative traits to discriminate samples of different species and even for different populations of the same species. In summary, we developed an efficient, accurate, and customizable tool, 3DPhenoFish, to extract morphological phenotypes from point cloud data, which should help overcome traditional challenges in manual measurements. 3DPhenoFish can be used for research on morphological phenotypes in fish, including functional gene mapping, artificial selection, and conservation studies. 3DPhenoFish is an open-source software and can be downloaded for free at https://github.com/lyh24k/3DPhenoFish/tree/master.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2021.141DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8317184PMC
July 2021

Cascade targeting tumor mitochondria with CuS nanoparticles for enhanced photothermal therapy in the second near-infrared window.

Biomater Sci 2021 Aug 23;9(15):5209-5217. Epub 2021 Jun 23.

i-Lab and Division of Nanobiomedicine, CAS Key Laboratory of Nano-Bio Interface, CAS Center for Excellence in Nanoscience, Suzhou Institute of Nano-Tech and Nano-Bionics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Suzhou 215123, China.

Photothermal therapy, assisted by local heat generation using photothermal nanoparticles (NPs), is an emerging strategy to treat tumors noninvasively. To improve treatment outcomes and to alleviate potential side effects on normal tissue cells, utilizing the optically transparent second near-infrared (NIR-II) window and actively targeting tumors are critical. Considering that mitochondria are heat sensitive and play an important role in the up-regulation of metabolic activity in tumor cells, herein we report a cascade targeting scheme that enables active photothermal ablation of tumor mitochondria. First, NIR-II absorbing CuS NPs were surface modified with the mitochondria targeting moiety (3-carboxypropyl) triphenylphosphonium bromide (TPP) and then shielded with CD44 targeting hyaluronic acid, which will only expose TPP upon reaching the tumor sites. This allowed over 90% CuS NP enrichment at tumor mitochondria, and as a result, significantly improved tumor cell photothermal ablation was observed at the cellular level. An in vivo study demonstrated enhanced tumor uptake and improved tumor growth suppression by using these cascade targeting CuS NPs as NIR-II photothermal agents.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d1bm00589hDOI Listing
August 2021

Measurement of the Brain Volume/Liver Volume Ratio by Three-Dimensional MRI in Appropriate-for-Gestational Age Fetuses and Those With Fetal Growth Restriction.

J Magn Reson Imaging 2021 Jun 21. Epub 2021 Jun 21.

Department of Radiology, Women's Hospital, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, China.

Background: Fetal growth restriction (FGR) is associated with a high fetal brain volume/liver volume (FBV/FLV) ratio. Ultrasound may not always be reliable, which has prompted further investigation of MRI techniques.

Purpose: To determine the relationship between FBV/FLV ratio, as measured by MRI, and gestational age (GA) in normal fetuses and those with FGR.

Study Type: Retrospective.

Population: One hundred and forty seven singleton pregnancies including 105 appropriate-for-gestational age (AGA) fetuses and 42 FGR fetuses.

Field Strength/sequence: Three-dimensional fast imaging employing steady-state acquisition at 1.5 T.

Assessment: The FBV and FLV were measured by three radiologists. The inter- and intraobserver agreements, the correlation between FBV/FLV ratio, and advancing GA were evaluated; the diagnostic value of FBV/FLV ratio was evaluated and compared with head circumference/abdominal circumference (HC/AC) ratio measured by ultrasound.

Statistical Tests: Intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) was used to determine inter- and intraobserver agreements. Regression analysis was used to assess the correlation between FBV/FLV ratio and advancing GA. The diagnostic value of the FBV/FLV ratio was examined by the area under the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve.

Results: The inter- and intraobserver agreements were excellent with an interobserver ICC of 0.984 and intra-observer ICCs of 0.989, 0.994, and 0.995. The FBV/FLV ratio in AGA fetuses decreased significantly with advancing GA (Pearson correlation coefficient = -0.844). The FBV/FLV ratio in FGR fetuses was significantly higher than that in AGA fetuses. To identify fetuses at high risk for FGR using the FBV/FLV ratio, the area under the ROC curve was 0.978, with an optimal cut-off value of 4.10. The sensitivity of FBV/FLV ratio in identifying FGR was significantly higher than that of HC/AC ratio (0.929 vs. 0.529).

Data Conclusion: An inverse correlation exists between FBV/FLV ratio and advancing GA in normal fetuses. A high FBV/FLV ratio may be used to ascertain fetuses at high risk for FGR.

Level Of Evidence: 3 Technical Efficacy Stage: 3.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jmri.27792DOI Listing
June 2021

Diffusion MRI Based Myometrium Tractography for Detection of Placenta Accreta Spectrum Disorder.

J Magn Reson Imaging 2021 Jun 21. Epub 2021 Jun 21.

Key Laboratory for Biomedical Engineering of Ministry of Education, Department of Biomedical Engineering, College of Biomedical Engineering & Instrument Science, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China.

Background: Prenatal diagnosis of placenta accreta spectrum (PAS) disorders is difficult. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been shown to be a useful supplementary method to ultrasound.

Purpose: To investigate diffusion MRI (dMRI) based tractography as a tool for detecting PAS disorders, and to evaluate its performance compared with anatomical MRI.

Study Type: Prospective.

Population: Forty-seven pregnant women in the third trimester with risk factors for PAS.

Field Strength/sequence: Using fast imaging employing steady-state acquisition and high-angular resolution dMRI at 1.5 Tesla.

Assessment: Diagnosis of PAS was performed by three radiologists based on the dMRI-based feature of myometrial fiber discontinuity and on commonly used anatomical features including presence of dark band, discontinuous myometrium and bladder wall interruption. We evaluated the sensitivity, specificity, accuracy, and area-under-the-curve (AUC) of the individual features and established an integrated model with random forest analysis.

Statistical Tests: Maternal age and gestational age at scan were compared between PAS and control group using a t-test, and childbearing history was compared using a chi-squared test. The random forest model was employed to combine the anatomical and dMRI features with 5-fold cross-validation, and the weight of each feature was normalized to evaluate its importance in predicting PAS.

Results: Based on surgical pathology reports, 16 out of 47 patients had confirmed PAS. The anatomical feature of dark bands and tractography marker achieved the highest AUC of 0.842 for predicting PAS, and the integrated anatomical and tractography features further improved the AUC of 0.880 with an accuracy of 87.2%. The tractography feature contributed most (30.1%) to the integrated model.

Data Conclusion: Myometrial tractography demonstrated superior performance in detecting PAS. Moreover, the combination of dMRI-based tractography and anatomical MRI could potentially improve the diagnosis of PAS disorders in clinical practice.

Level Of Evidence: 2 TECHNICAL EFFICACY STAGE: 2.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jmri.27794DOI Listing
June 2021

Preparation of fluorescent bimetallic silver/copper nanoparticles and their utility of dual-mode fluorimetric and colorimetric probe for Hg.

Spectrochim Acta A Mol Biomol Spectrosc 2021 Nov 29;261:120035. Epub 2021 May 29.

Key Laboratory of Photochemical Biomaterials and Energy Storage Materials, Heilongjiang Province, Key Laboratory for Photonic and Electronic Bandgap Materials, Ministry of Education, College of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Harbin Normal University, Harbin, Heilongjiang 150025, China; Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge, Lensfield Rd, Cambridge CB2 1EW, UK. Electronic address:

A dual-mode colorimetric and fluorimetric probe was successfully established based on silver/copper bimetallic nanoparticles (AgCu-BNPs). The AgCu-BNPs were confirmed as individually bimetallic nanoparticles with a mean size of 7.7 ± 0.2 nm, as characterized by high resolution transmission electron microscopy. Intriguingly, the AgCu-BNPs possess both surface plasmon resonances (SPR) and fluorescence emission. AgCu-BNPs emanate bright blue fluorescence with optical emission centered at 442 nm with high quantum yield of 30.3%, and AgCu-BNPs were attenuated or even quenched by Hg via both static and dynamic quenching, coincidently accompanied by a visible color change, which endow AgCu-BNPs a unique utility as dual-mode colorimetric and fluorimetric probes. The detection limits as low as 89 nM and 9 nM were determined by dual-mode of AgCu-BNPs, respectively. The recovery rates in real samples were found to be 97.3-118.8%, and 89.5-112.7% by colorimetric and fluorescent methods separately, demonstrates the good environmental tolerance of the dual-mode probe.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.saa.2021.120035DOI Listing
November 2021

Characteristics of boundary layer ozone and its effect on surface ozone concentration in Shenzhen, China: A case study.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Oct 28;791:148044. Epub 2021 May 28.

Guangdong Engineering Research Center for Online Atmospheric Pollution Source Appointment Mass Spectrometry System, Institute of Mass Spectrometer and Atmospheric Environment, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, China.

In late September 2019, the longest and most extensive ozone (O) pollution process occurred at Pearl River Delta. Base on the observational data, surface-level O, vertical distribution characteristics boundary layer O as well as its effect on surface-level O are thoroughly analyzed. The O lidar results showed similar vertical O profiles both in pollution episodes and clean periods, from which a high O concentration layer between 300 and 500 m and a sub-high O concentration layer between 1300 and 1700 m (near the top of the mixing layer) can be found. Besides, the downward O transport paths from the high/sub-high O concentration layers could be observed along with the boundary layer evolution: At nighttime, large amounts of O were effectively stored into the residual layer (RL). Due to the upward development of Mixing layer (ML) in early morning, atmospheric vertical mixing carried the O inside the RL down to the surface, which led to a rapid increase in the surface-level O. The sub-high O layer began the downward mixing at noon, and became well-mixed after the boundary layer was fully developed in the afternoon, by which the near surface O pollution deteriorated again. Further analysis of the heavy O pollution episodes show that, the high O concentration inside the RL contributed 54% ± 6% of the surface-level O at 9:00 LT and the average contribution of O in the sub-high concentration layer to the surface-level O at 14:00 LT was 26% ± 9%. Based on the quantitative analysis of the observational data, this paper focus to reveal the importance of the contribution of O inside the RL and near the top of the ML to the surface O.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.148044DOI Listing
October 2021

Early-life exposure to tris (1,3-dichloro-2-propyl) phosphate caused multigenerational neurodevelopmental toxicity in zebrafish via altering maternal thyroid hormones transfer and epigenetic modifications.

Environ Pollut 2021 Sep 28;285:117471. Epub 2021 May 28.

State Key Laboratory of Freshwater Ecology and Biotechnology, Institute of Hydrobiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Wuhan, 430072, China.

Tris (1,3-dichloro-2-propyl) phosphate (TDCIPP), an alternative to brominated flame retardants, might pose an exposure risk to humans and wild animals during fetal development. Our recent study suggested that short-term TDCIPP exposure during early development caused sex-dependent behavioral alteration in adults. In the present study, multigenerational neurodevelopmental toxicity upon early-life exposure of parental zebrafish was evaluated, and the possible underlying mechanisms were further explored. Specifically, after embryonic exposure (0-10 days post-fertilization, dpf) to TDCIPP (0, 0.01, 0.10, and 1.00 μM), zebrafish larvae were cultured in clean water until the sexually matured to produce progeny (F1). The results confirmed neurodevelopmental toxicity in F1 larvae characterized by changes of developmental endpoints, reduced thigmotaxis, as well as altered transcription of genes including myelin basic protein a (mbpa), growth associated protein (gap43) and synapsin IIa (syn2a). Sex-specific changes in thyroid hormones (THs) indicated the relationship of abnormal THs levels with previously reported neurotoxicity in adult females after early-life exposure to TDCIPP. Similar changing profiles of TH levels (increased T3 and decreased T4) in adult females and F1 eggs, but not in F1 larvae, suggested that the TH disruptions were primarily inherited from the maternal fish. Further results demonstrated hypermethylation of global DNA and key genes related to TH transport including transthyretin (ttr) and solute carrier family 16 member 2 (slc16a2), which might affect the transport of THs to target tissues, thus at least partially contributing to the neurodevelopmental toxicity in F1 larvae. Overall, our results confirmed that early-life TDCIPP exposure of parental fish could affect the early neurodevelopment of F1 offspring. The underlying mechanism could involve altered TH levels inherited from maternal zebrafish and epigenetic modifications in F1 larvae.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2021.117471DOI Listing
September 2021

Mapping fetal brain development based on automated segmentation and 4D brain atlasing.

Brain Struct Funct 2021 Jul 29;226(6):1961-1972. Epub 2021 May 29.

Key Laboratory for Biomedical Engineering of Ministry of Education, Department of Biomedical Engineering, College of Biomedical Engineering & Instrument Science, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China.

Fetal brain MRI has become an important tool for in utero assessment of brain development and disorders. However, quantitative analysis of fetal brain MRI remains difficult, partially due to the limited tools for automated preprocessing and the lack of normative brain templates. In this paper, we proposed an automated pipeline for fetal brain extraction, super-resolution reconstruction, and fetal brain atlasing to quantitatively map in utero fetal brain development during mid-to-late gestation in a Chinese population. First, we designed a U-net convolutional neural network for automated fetal brain extraction, which achieved an average accuracy of 97%. We then generated a developing fetal brain atlas, using an iterative linear and nonlinear registration approach. Based on the 4D spatiotemporal atlas, we quantified the morphological development of the fetal brain between 23 and 36 weeks of gestation. The proposed pipeline enabled the fully automated volumetric reconstruction for clinically available fetal brain MRI data, and the 4D fetal brain atlas provided normative templates for the quantitative characterization of fetal brain development, especially in the Chinese population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00429-021-02303-xDOI Listing
July 2021

Ibudilast Attenuates Folic Acid-Induced Acute Kidney Injury by Blocking Pyroptosis Through TLR4-Mediated NF-κB and MAPK Signaling Pathways.

Front Pharmacol 2021 7;12:650283. Epub 2021 May 7.

Department of Histology and Embryology, Basic Medical College, China Medical University, Shenyang, China.

Folic acid (FA)-induced renal tubule damage, which is characterized by extensive inflammation, is a common model of acute kidney injury (AKI). Pyroptosis, a pro-inflammatory form of cell death due to the activation of inflammatory caspases, is involved in AKI progression. Ibudilast, a TLR4 antagonist, has been used in the clinic to exert an anti-inflammatory effect on asthma. However, researchers have not explored whether ibudilast exerts a protective effect on AKI by inhibiting inflammation. In the present study, ibudilast reversed FA-induced AKI in mice, as indicated by the reduced serum creatinine and urea nitrogen levels, and improved renal pathology, as well as the downregulation of kidney injury marker-1. In addition, ibudilast significantly increased the production of the anti-inflammatory factor IL-10 while suppressing the secretion of the pro-inflammatory cytokine TNF-α and macrophage infiltration. Moreover, in the injured kidney, ibudilast reduced the levels of both inflammasome markers (NLRP3) and pyroptosis-related proteins (caspase-1, IL1-β, IL-18, and GSDMD cleavage), and decreased the number of TUNEL-positive cells. Further mechanistic studies showed that ibudilast administration inhibited the FA-induced upregulation of TLR4, blocked NF-κB nuclear translocation, and reduced the phosphorylation of NF-κB and IκBα, p38, ERK, and JNK. Thus, this study substantiates the protective effect of ibudilast on FA-induced AKI in mice and suggests that protection might be achieved by reducing pyroptosis and inflammation, likely through the inhibition of TLR4-mediated NF-κB and MAPK signaling pathways.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fphar.2021.650283DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8139578PMC
May 2021

The effect of microstructure on mechanical properties of corn cob.

Micron 2021 07 20;146:103070. Epub 2021 Apr 20.

Key Laboratory of Bionic Engineering, Ministry of Education, Jilin University, Changchun, 130025, China; College of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, Jilin University, Changchun, 130025, China.

As a natural biomass resource, corn cob has excellent mechanical properties and a special layered structure. To investigate the relationship between the mechanical properties and microstructure of corn cob, the ultra-deep field 3D microscope was used to characterize the macro geometric parameters, and the scanning electron microscopy (SEM) was observe the microstructure of the corn cob. The Fourier transform infrared spectrometer was used to analyze the fiber composition, revealing the contribution of fiber composition to the mechanical properties. Axial compression, radial compression, and three-point bending tests were performed on corn cob using a universal testing machine. Moreover, an impact testing machine was used for impact tests. The results show that a corn cob is structurally divided into the pith, woody ring, and glume, mainly composed of cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin in fiber composition, respectively. The pith is a porous sponge-like tissue that has a greater bearing capacity while maintaining a low density. It is also a progressively hardening material with good buffering properties under impact loads. The woody ring is the primary source of mechanical strength, whose microstructure is a hollow tubular structure composed of cellulose and bonded by lignin. The internal microstructure of the glume is also porous and spongy, but the mechanical properties are mainly manifested in its macrostructure. The results of this study may provide a reference for the subsequent processing and industrial application of corn cob, and the unique structure of corn cob is also an excellent bionic prototype for lightweight design.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.micron.2021.103070DOI Listing
July 2021

Gastrointestinal cytomegalovirus disease secondary to measles in an immunocompetent infant: A case report.

World J Gastroenterol 2021 Apr;27(15):1655-1663

Department of Pathology, Shenzhen Children's Hospital, Shenzhen 518036, Guangdong Province, China.

Background: Gastrointestinal cytomegalovirus (CMV) disease occurs commonly in immunocompromised/immunodeficient patients with advanced human immunodeficiency virus infection, neoplasm, solid organ transplantation, hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, or treatment with immunosuppressants, but is rarely reported in association with measles infection.

Case Summary: We describe a case of extensive gastrointestinal CMV disease secondary to measles infection in a 9-mo-old boy who presented with persistent fever and bloody diarrhea. His condition was improved after ganciclovir treatment. Serological analysis of CMV showed negative immunoglobulin (Ig) M and positive IgG. Blood CMV-DNA was 9.26 × 10 copies/mL. The diagnosis of gastrointestinal CMV disease was confirmed by histopathological findings of intranuclear and intracytoplasmic inclusions and Owl's eye inclusion. This case highlights the differential diagnosis and histopathological characteristics of gastrointestinal CMV infection and laboratory tests.

Conclusion: Extensive gastrointestinal CMV lesions can be induced by the immune suppression secondary to measles infection. Rational, fast, and effective laboratory examinations are essential for suspected patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3748/wjg.v27.i15.1655DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8058656PMC
April 2021

New stent for transapical mitral valve replacement in acute swine experiment.

J Cardiothorac Surg 2021 Apr 21;16(1):101. Epub 2021 Apr 21.

Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, the First Affiliated Hospital, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, 79 Qing Chun Road, Hang Zhou, 310003, Zhejiang Province, China.

Background: Many patients with mitral regurgitation are denied open-heart surgery due to perceived high risk. Transcatheter mitral valve replacement is a therapeutic alternative for patients at high surgical risk. This study aimed to assess the feasibility of a new self-expanding valved stent for transcatheter mitral valve replacement via apex in an acute animal model.

Methods: Eight porcine experiments were performed in the acute study. A left thoracotomy was performed, and the new self-expanding transcatheter valved stent was deployed under fluoroscopic guidance in the native mitral annulus via apex. Hemodynamic data were recorded before and after implantation. Mitral annulus diameter and valve area were measured using echocardiography. Transvalvular and left ventricular outflow tract pressure gradients were measured using invasive methods.

Results: Seven animals underwent successful transapical mitral valve replacement; the implantation was unsuccessful in one animal. The mean procedure time, defined from placement to tightening of the purse-string suture, was 17.14 ± 7.86 min. Hemodynamic data before and after transapical mitral valve replacement showed no difference in statistical analysis. The mean diameter of the self-expanding device after implantation was 2.58 ± 1.04 cm; the mean functional area was 2.70 ± 0.26 cm. Trace-to-mild central and paravalvular leaks were detected in 7 valves. The mean pressure gradient across the self-expanding device was 2.00 ± 0.82 mmHg; the corresponding gradient across the LVOT was 3.28 ± 1.11 mmHg. Postmortem evaluation confirmed precise device positioning in 7 animals with no signs of LVOT obstruction.

Conclusion: Transcatheter mitral replacement of the new valved stent was confirmed feasible in acute preclinical models. The new stent reveals optimal design parameters.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13019-021-01483-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8059321PMC
April 2021

The tonoplast-localized transporter OsNRAMP2 is involved in iron homeostasis and affects seed germination in rice.

J Exp Bot 2021 06;72(13):4839-4852

Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, College of Life Science, Nanjing Agriculture University, Nanjing, Jiangsu, China.

Vacuolar storage of iron (Fe) is important for Fe homeostasis in plants. When sufficient, excess Fe could be stored in vacuoles for remobilization in the case of Fe deficiency. Although the mechanism of Fe remobilization from vacuoles is critical for crop development under low Fe stress, the transporters that mediate vacuolar Fe translocation into the cytosol in rice remains unknown. Here, we showed that under high Fe2+ concentrations, the Δccc1 yeast mutant transformed with the rice natural resistance-associated macrophage protein 2 gene (OsNRAMP2) became more sensitive to Fe toxicity. In rice protoplasts and transgenic plants expressing Pro35S:OsNRAMP2-GFP, OsNRAMP2 was localized to the tonoplast. Vacuolar Fe content in osnramp2 knockdown lines was higher than in the wild type, while the growth of osnramp2 knockdown plants was significantly influenced by Fe deficiency. Furthermore, the germination of osnramp2 knockdown plants was arrested. Conversely, the vacuolar Fe content of Pro35S:OsNRAMP2-GFP lines was significantly lower than in the wild type, and overexpression of OsNRAMP2 increased shoot biomass under Fe deficiency. Taken together, we propose that OsNRAMP2 transports Fe from the vacuole to the cytosol and plays a pivotal role in seed germination.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jxb/erab159DOI Listing
June 2021

Fetal growth, fetal development, and placental features in women with polycystic ovary syndrome: analysis based on fetal and placental magnetic resonance imaging.

J Zhejiang Univ Sci B 2020 Dec.;21(12):977-989

Department of Chinese Integrative Medicine, Women's Hospital, School of Medicine, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310006, China.

Objective: Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), a common endocrine-metabolic dysfunction in reproductive-aged women, may be involved in compromised pregnancy and offspring outcomes. This study aimed to investigate whether maternal PCOS affects fetal growth, fetal development, and placental features.

Methods: This retrospective case-control study included 60 pregnant women with PCOS (PCOS group) and 120 healthy pregnant women without PCOS (control group). Fetal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was performed followed by an ultrasound examination and indications for imaging, including known or suspected fetal pathology, history of fetal abnormality in previous pregnancy or in a family member, and concern for placenta accreta. Fetal MRI images were analyzed for head circumference (HC), abdomen circumference (AC), lung-to-liver signal intensity ratio (LLSIR, a prenatal marker of fetal lung maturity), lengths of liver and kidney diameters in fetuses, and placental relative signal intensity on T2-weighted single-shot fast spin echo (SSFSE) imaging (rSI), and placental relative apparent diffusion coefficient value (rADC). Data on height and weight of offspring were collected through telephone follow-up.

Results: Compared to the control group, the PCOS group showed the following characteristics: (1) smaller biparietal diameter and femur length in fetuses (P=0.026 and P=0.005, respectively), (2) smaller HC in fetuses (evident after 32 weeks; P=0.044), (3) lower LLSIR and smaller dorsoventral length of liver in fetuses (evident before 32 weeks; P=0.005 and P=0.019, respectively), and (4) smaller placental thickness (evident before 32 weeks; P=0.017). No significant differences in placental rSI or rADC were observed between the groups (all P>0.05). No significant differences in height and weight of offspring during childhood existed between the groups (all P>0.05).

Conclusions: There exist alterations of fetal growth, fetal development, and placental features from women with PCOS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1631/jzus.B2000350DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7759450PMC
April 2021

Mechanistic Insights into the Co-Aggregation of Aβ and hIAPP: An All-Atom Molecular Dynamic Study.

J Phys Chem B 2021 03 22;125(8):2050-2060. Epub 2021 Feb 22.

State Key Laboratory of Surface Physics and Department of Physics, Fudan University, 2005 Songhu Road, Shanghai 200438, China.

Patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) have a high risk of developing Type II diabetes (T2D). The co-aggregation of the two disease-related proteins, Aβ and hIAPP, has been proposed as a potential molecular mechanism. However, the detailed Aβ-hIAPP interactions and structural characteristics of co-aggregates are mostly unknown at atomic level. Here, we explore the conformational ensembles of the Aβ-hIAPP heterodimer and Aβ or hIAPP homodimer by performing all-atom explicit-solvent replica exchange molecular dynamic simulations. Our simulations show that the interaction propensity of Aβ-hIAPP in the heterodimer is comparable with that of Aβ-Aβ/hIAPP-hIAPP in the homodimer. Similar hot spot residues of Aβ/hIAPP in the homodimer and heterodimer are identified, indicating that both Aβ and hIAPP have similar molecular recognition sites for self-aggregation and co-aggregation. Aβ in the heterodimer possesses three high β-sheet probability regions: the N-terminal region E3-H6, the central hydrophobic core region K16-E22, and the C-terminal hydrophobic region I31-A41, which is highly similar to Aβ in the homodimer. More importantly, in the heterodimer, the regions E3-H6, F19-E22, and I31-M35 of Aβ and the amyloid core region N20-T30 of hIAPP display higher β-sheet probability than they do in homodimer, implying their crucial roles in the formation of β-sheet-rich co-aggregates. Our study sheds light on the co-aggregation of Aβ and hIAPP at an atomic level, which will be helpful for an in-depth understanding of the molecular mechanism for epidemiological correlation of AD and T2D.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jpcb.0c11132DOI Listing
March 2021

Prenatal Diagnosis and Classification of Fetal Hypospadias: The Role and Value of Magnetic Resonance Imaging.

J Magn Reson Imaging 2021 06 19;53(6):1862-1870. Epub 2021 Feb 19.

Department of Radiology, Women's Hospital, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, China.

Background: Prenatal diagnosis and classification of hypospadias are difficult and of value for management during perinatal and neonatal periods. The conventional approach for prenatal diagnosis of hypospadias is ultrasound; however, this technique may be inconclusive in certain cases, which prompts for further exploration with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Purpose: To investigate the role of MRI in the prenatal diagnosis and classification of fetuses with hypospadias.

Study Type: Retrospective.

Population: Thirty-five fetuses (median gestational age = 37, range 24-39 weeks) with possible hypospadias.

Field Strength/sequence: Single-shot fast spin echo T2-weighted imaging, fast imaging employing steady-state acquisition (FIESTA), and three-dimensional FIESTA acquired at 1.5 T.

Assessment: Diagnosis and classification of hypospadias using MRI were performed by three experienced radiologists based on MRI features, including a short penile shaft, abnormal penile tip, penile curvature, bifid scrotum, "tulip sign," and penoscrotal transposition. The accuracy of MRI in the diagnosis and classification of hypospadias was assessed in comparison to postnatal clinical diagnosis. The interobserver agreement between radiologists was also assessed.

Statistical Tests: Kendall's W test was applied to assess the interobserver agreement between radiologists. Taking postnatal clinical diagnosis as the reference standard, the sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value, and accuracy were calculated.

Results: Of the 35 fetuses, 24 cases were confirmed as hypospadias through postnatal clinical diagnosis. The interobserver agreement between radiologists was substantial (Kendall's W = 0.781, P < 0.001). Of the 24 confirmed cases (13 cases of severe hypospadias and 11 cases of mild hypospadias), 22 cases were correctly diagnosed by MRI. The accuracy of MRI in the diagnosis of hypospadias, severe hypospadias, and mild hypospadias was 85.71%, 82.86%, and 80.00%, respectively.

Data Conclusion: MRI has good performance in the diagnosis of fetal hypospadias. In addition, MRI could help evaluate the severity of fetal hypospadias.

Level Of Evidence: 3 TECHNICAL EFFICACY: Stage 2.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jmri.27519DOI Listing
June 2021

Serotonin and Melatonin Show Different Modes of Action on Aβ Protofibril Destabilization.

ACS Chem Neurosci 2021 02 3;12(4):799-809. Epub 2021 Feb 3.

College of Physical Education and Training, Shanghai University of Sport, 399 Chang Hai Road, Shanghai 200438, People's Republic of China.

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is associated with the aberrant self-assembly of amyloid-β (Aβ) protein into fibrillar deposits. The disaggregation of Aβ fibril is believed as one of the major therapeutic strategies for treating AD. Previous experimental studies reported that serotonin (Ser), one of the indoleamine neurotransmitters, and its derivative melatonin (Mel) are able to disassemble preformed Aβ fibrils. However, the fibril-disruption mechanisms are unclear. As the first step to understand the underlying mechanism, we investigated the interactions of Ser and Mel molecules with the LS-shaped Aβ protofibril by performing a total of nine individual 500 ns all-atom molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. The simulations demonstrate that both Ser and Mel molecules disrupt the local β-sheet structure, destroy the salt bridges between K28 side chain and A42 COO, and consequently destabilize the global structure of Aβ protofibril. The Mel molecule exhibits a greater binding capacity than the Ser molecule. Intriguingly, we find that Ser and Mel molecules destabilize Aβ protofibril through different modes of action. Ser preferentially binds with the aromatic residues in the N-terminal region through π-π stacking interactions, while Mel binds not only with the N-terminal aromatic residues but also with the C-terminal hydrophobic residues via π-π and hydrophobic interactions. This work reveals the disruptive mechanisms of Aβ protofibril by Ser and Mel molecules and provides useful information for designing drug candidates against AD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acschemneuro.1c00038DOI Listing
February 2021

Genome-Wide Identification of lncRNAs Involved in Fertility Transition in the Photo-Thermosensitive Genic Male Sterile Rice Line Wuxiang S.

Front Plant Sci 2020 14;11:580050. Epub 2021 Jan 14.

State Key Laboratory of Hybrid Rice, Department of Genetics, College of Life Sciences, Wuhan University, Wuhan, China.

Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) act as universal regulators of various biological processes, but no genome-wide screening of lncRNAs involved in the fertility transition of the photo-thermosensitive genic male sterile (PTGMS) rice line has been reported. Here, we performed strand-specific RNA sequencing at three developmental stages of a novel PTGMS line Wuxiang S (WXS). A total of 3,948 lncRNAs were identified; 622 of these were detected as differentially expressed lncRNAs (DE-lncRNAs) between male-sterile WXS (WXS-S) and male-fertile WXS (WXS-F). A large proportion of lncRNAs differentially expressed at the stage of pollen mother cells meiosis, suggested that it may be the most critical stage for fertility transition of WXS. Furthermore, functional annotation of the - and - targets of DE-lncRNAs showed that 150 targets corresponding to 141 DE-lncRNAs were identified as involved in anther and pollen development. Moreover, computational analysis predicted 97 lncRNAs as precursors for 72 miRNAs, and 94 DE-lncRNAs as potential endogenous target mimics (eTMs) for 150 miRNAs. Finally, using the dual luciferase reporter assays, we demonstrated that two lncRNAs act as eTMs to regulate the expression of the and genes by competing for the shared osa-miR156 and osa-miR396, respectively. These genomic characteristics, differential expression, and interaction of lncRNAs with miRNAs and mRNAs contribute to our understanding of the roles of lncRNAs during the fertility transition in PTGMS rice lines.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2020.580050DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7840536PMC
January 2021

Role of prenatal imaging in the diagnosis and management of fetal facio-cervical masses.

Sci Rep 2021 01 14;11(1):1385. Epub 2021 Jan 14.

Department of Radiology, Women's Hospital, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Xueshi Rd No. 1, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, People's Republic of China.

Congenital facio-cervical masses can be a developmental anomaly of cystic, solid, or vascular origin, and have an inseparable relationship with adverse prognosis. This retrospective cross-sectional study aimed at determining on the prenatal diagnosis of congenital facio-cervical masses, its management and outcome in a large tertiary referral center. We collected information on prenatal clinical data, pregnancy outcomes, survival information, and final diagnosis. Out of 130 cases of facio-cervical masses, a total of 119 cases of lymphatic malformations (LMs), 2 cases of teratoma, 2 cases of thyroglossal duct cyst, 4 cases of hemangioma, 1 case of congenital epulis, and 2 cases of dermoid cyst were reviewed. The accuracy of prenatal ultrasound was 93.85% (122/130). Observations of diameters using prenatal ultrasound revealed that the bigger the initial diameter is, the bigger the relative change during pregnancy. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) revealed that 2 cases of masses were associated with airway compression. In conclusion, ultrasound has a high overall diagnostic accuracy of fetal face and neck deformities. Prenatal US can enhance the management of ambulatory monitoring and classification. Furthermore, MRI provided a detailed assessment of fetal congenital malformations, as well as visualization of the trachea, presenting a multi-dimensional anatomical relationship.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-80976-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7809128PMC
January 2021

Developing a risk scoring system based on immune-related lncRNAs for patients with gastric cancer.

Biosci Rep 2021 01;41(1)

Department of Immunology, Southwest Medical University, Luzhou, China.

The immune system and the tumor interact closely during tumor development. Aberrantly expressed long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) may be potentially applied as diagnostic and prognostic markers for gastric cancer (GC). At present, the diagnosis and treatment of GC patients remain a formidable clinical challenge. The present study aimed to build a risk scoring system to improve the prognosis of GC patients. In the present study, ssGSEA was used to evaluate the infiltration of immune cells in GC tumor tissue samples, and the samples were split into a high immune cell infiltration group and a low immune cell infiltration group. About 1262 differentially expressed lncRNAs between the high immune cell infiltration group and the low immune cell infiltration group. About 3204 differentially expressed lncRNAs between GC tumor tissues and paracancerous tissues were identified. Then, 621 immune-related lncRNAs were screened using a Venn analysis based on the above results, and 85 prognostic lncRNAs were identified using a univariate Cox analysis. We constructed a prognostic signature using LASSO analysis and evaluated the predictive performance of the signature using ROC analysis. GO and KEGG enrichment analyses were performed on the lncRNAs using the R package, 'clusterProfiler'. The TIMER online database was used to analyze correlations between the risk score and the abundances of the six types of immune cells. In conclusion, our study found that specific immune-related lncRNAs were clinically significant. These lncRNAs were used to construct a reliable prognostic signature and analyzed immune infiltrates, which may assist clinicians in developing individualized treatment strategies for GC patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1042/BSR20202203DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7789809PMC
January 2021

Chromosomal genome of Triplophysa bleekeri provides insights into its evolution and environmental adaptation.

Gigascience 2020 11;9(11)

Key Laboratory of Freshwater Fish Reproduction and Development (Ministry of Education), Key Laboratory of Aquatic Science of Chongqing, School of Life Sciences, Southwest University, Chongqing 400715, China.

Background: Intense stresses caused by high-altitude environments may result in noticeable genetic adaptions in native species. Studies of genetic adaptations to high elevations have been largely limited to terrestrial animals. How fish adapt to high-elevation environments is largely unknown. Triplophysa bleekeri, an endemic fish inhabiting high-altitude regions, is an excellent model to investigate the genetic mechanisms of adaptation to the local environment. Here, we assembled a chromosomal genome sequence of T. bleekeri, with a size of ∼628 Mb (contig and scaffold N50 of 3.1 and 22.9 Mb, respectively). We investigated the origin and environmental adaptation of T. bleekeri based on 21,198 protein-coding genes in the genome.

Results: Compared with fish species living at low altitudes, gene families associated with lipid metabolism and immune response were significantly expanded in the T. bleekeri genome. Genes involved in DNA repair exhibit positive selection for T. bleekeri, Triplophysa siluroides, and Triplophysa tibetana, indicating that adaptive convergence in Triplophysa species occurred at the positively selected genes. We also analyzed whole-genome variants among samples from 3 populations. The results showed that populations separated by geological and artificial barriers exhibited obvious differences in genetic structures, indicating that gene flow is restricted between populations.

Conclusions: These results will help us expand our understanding of environmental adaptation and genetic diversity of T. bleekeri and provide valuable genetic resources for future studies on the evolution and conservation of high-altitude fish species such as T. bleekeri.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/gigascience/giaa132DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7684707PMC
November 2020

Molecular Dynamics Study of Bubble Nucleation on an Ideally Smooth Substrate.

Langmuir 2020 Nov 4;36(45):13725-13734. Epub 2020 Nov 4.

Key Laboratory of Thermo-Fluid Science and Engineering of MOE, School of Energy and Power Engineering, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an Shaanxi, 710049, P. R. China.

Questions regarding bubble nucleation on an ideally smooth surface are seemingly endless, but it can not be adequately verified yet because of the scale limitation (microscopic scale). Hence, in this study, bubble nucleation on an ideally smooth substrate is explored using the molecular dynamics simulation method. An ideally smooth hydrophilic platinum substrate at 145 K is conducted to heat the simple L-J liquid argon. Results show that a visible bubble nucleus successfully forms on the ideally smooth substrate without any additional disturbance, which is common in boiling studies using the traditional numerical simulation methods. However, the nucleation position is unpredictable. At the atomic level, the thermal energy transfer from an ideally smooth substrate to liquid atoms is inhomogeneous due to atomic inhomogeneous distribution and irregular movement, which are the key influencing factors for achieving bubble nucleation. The inhomogeneity will be highlighted with the heating process. As a result, some local liquid atoms near the ideally smooth surface absorb more thermal energy to overcome their potential barrier at a specific moment, causing the emergence of a distinct nucleus there. Furthermore, nanostructure substrates are introduced to make a comparison with the smooth substrate in bubble nucleation. There is no significant difference in the inception temperature of nucleation between the ideally smooth and nanostructure substrates, but the latter has better performance in improving the bubble nucleation rate.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.langmuir.0c02832DOI Listing
November 2020

Case report of Langerhans cell histiocytosis in a fetus detected by magnetic resonance imaging.

J Obstet Gynaecol Res 2021 Jan 4;47(1):456-462. Epub 2020 Nov 4.

Department of Radiology, Children's Hospital, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China.

Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH) is a rare disease, and the diagnosis of LCH is mainly based on clinical manifestation, imaging and pathological examinations. But during pregnancy, imaging examinations especially play an important role in the diagnosis and prognostic assessment of fetal LCH. Up to now, there has been no report about magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) features of fetal LCH. We reported a 32-year-old woman at 36 weeks' gestation took fetal MRI because of fetal anomalies diagnosed by ultrasonography. On the fetus's MR images, the thymus was slightly enlarged with smooth or lobulated contour in supra anterior mediastinum, displayed heterogeneous signals and contained multiple small cysts on T2WI. Innumerable irregular nodules and patchy shadows were present throughout both lungs. Pulmonary lesions were bilateral and diffuse with relative sparing of the costophrenic angles. The margins of these lesions were fluffy and indistinct. These lesions showed heterogeneous signals on T2WI. MRI showed no lesions in skin region. After birth, lots of round or oval skin lesions distributed all over the baby's body presenting as ulcerated or blister-like rashes. The chest computer tomography (CT) showed punctate calcification and heterogeneous enhancement in the thymus and bilateral diffuse reticular or reticulonodular opacities in both lungs with fluffy and indistinct margins. Pathological finding was consistent with LCH. Through reporting MRI features of LCH in one fetus, this study aims to improve awareness of fetal LCH in radiologists and clinicians, to improve the prenatal diagnostic rate of this disorder.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jog.14559DOI Listing
January 2021

Primitive ovarian carcinosarcoma: a clinical and radiological analysis of five cases.

J Ovarian Res 2020 Oct 28;13(1):129. Epub 2020 Oct 28.

Department of Radiology, Women's Hospital School of Medicine Zhejiang University, No. 1 Xueshi Road, Hangzhou, 310006, Zhejiang Province, China.

Background: Ovarian carcinosarcomas (OCS) are very rare tumors composed of a mixture of carcinomatous and sarcomatous elements. There have been only scattered case studies that have described the imaging findings. In order to improve the awareness of this rare tumor, this study aimed to analyze the clinical and imaging features of five cases of OCS confirmed by surgical pathologic evaluation.

Methods: This retrospective study includes five OCS patients diagnosed and treated at our institute. The clinical course and imaging findings of all patients were retrospectively analyzed. The patients were 31 to 59 years of age. All five patients underwent CT scans, two underwent MRI scans.

Results: The five patients have no specific symptoms. Four patients had elevated CA 125 levels and three patients had elevated CA 153 levels. All patients had unilateral tumors, four in the left ovary, one in the right ovary. The largest transverse diameter of the tumors ranged from 11 cm to 14 cm. Two tumors showed solid masses with unequally sized cystic areas or necrosis, one showed a multilocular cystic mass with a large solid protrusion, two tumors showed a larger cystic mass with multiple mural nodules. The solid components of the tumors demonstrated restricted diffusion (the average ADC value being 998 mm/s and 1102 mm/s, respectively), and showed moderate or obvious enhancement. All five patients were treated by surgical resection and adjuvant chemotherapy. One patient is currently undergoing post-operative chemotherapy 1 month after operation and clinical stable. Three patients survived and showed no obvious recurrence and / or metastasis in follow-up from 9 to 59 months. One patient died from recurrence and metastasis.

Conclusions: OCS are rare and demonstrate variable CT and MRI morphological appearances. Due to the heterogeneous nature and very low morbidity of OCS, combination of careful analysis of imaging findings and clinical features might be useful for a more accurate diagnosis of OCS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13048-020-00728-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7592589PMC
October 2020
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