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Article
Two New Phoretic Species of Heterostigmatic Mites (Acari: Prostigmata: Neopygmephoridae and Scutacaridae) on Australian Hydrophilid Beetles (Coleoptera: Hydrophilidae)
Insects 2022, 13(5), 483; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects13050483 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Many heterostigmatic mites (Acari: Prostigmata: Heterostigmata) display a wide range of symbiotic interactions, from phoresy to parasitism, with a variety of insects. Australia is expected to harbour a rich diversity of heterostigmatic mites; however, its phoretic fauna and its host associations remain mainly [...] Read more.
Many heterostigmatic mites (Acari: Prostigmata: Heterostigmata) display a wide range of symbiotic interactions, from phoresy to parasitism, with a variety of insects. Australia is expected to harbour a rich diversity of heterostigmatic mites; however, its phoretic fauna and its host associations remain mainly unexplored. We conducted a short exploration of Australian insect-associated phoretic mites in summer 2020 and found two new phoretic heterostigmatic species on a semiaquatic hydrophilid beetle species, Coelostoma fabricii (Montrouzier, 1860) (Coleoptera: Hydrophilidae). Here, we describe these two new species, Allopygmephorus coelostomus sp. nov. (Neopygmephoridae) and Archidispus hydrophilus sp. nov. (Scutacaridae), which both belong to the superfamily Pygmephoroidea. Both species are distinct from their congeners, with a plesiomorphic character, bearing a median genital sclerite (mgs). Our study reports both genera for the first time from Australia. Full article
Article
Analysis of Mn2+ and Zn2+ Ions in Macroalgae with Heteroelement-Doped Carbon-Based Fluorescent Probe
Biosensors 2022, 12(5), 359; https://doi.org/10.3390/bios12050359 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Kelp and laver are large economic macroalgae in China, which are rich in nutrients, especially Mn and Zn. Excessive intake of Mn and Zn can be harmful to the human body. Therefore, it is necessary to develop a convenient and efficient method to [...] Read more.
Kelp and laver are large economic macroalgae in China, which are rich in nutrients, especially Mn and Zn. Excessive intake of Mn and Zn can be harmful to the human body. Therefore, it is necessary to develop a convenient and efficient method to detect the contents of Mn and Zn in macroalgae. In this experiment, red carbon dots (R-CDs) doped with N and S elements were prepared by the thermal solvent method. The obtained R-CDs displayed excitation wavelength-independent fluorescent emission in the red spectral region. The R-CDs were used to construct a fluorescent probe for specific recognition of Mn2+ and Zn2+, achieving high-sensitivity detection of Mn2+ and Zn2+. The detection results showed a good linear relationship between fluorescence intensity and Mn2+ concentration, and the calculated detection limit was 0.23 nmol/L. For the detection of Zn2+, the detection limit was estimated as 19.1 nmol/L. At the same time, the content distribution of Mn and Zn elements in macroalgae produced in Fujian was investigated by the constructed fluorescence probe. It was found that kelp, laver, and their products are rich in Mn and Zn elements, and the content of Mn and Zn elements in laver is higher than that in kelp, which can be used as the optimal food supplement for Mn and Zn elements. Full article
Article
The Efficiency of Lemon Essential Oil-Based Nanoemulsions on the Inhibition of Phomopsis sp. and Reduction of Postharvest Decay of Kiwifruit
Foods 2022, 11(10), 1510; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods11101510 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Essential oils (EOs) have excellent antibacterial activity and are generally recognized as safe (GRAS) for use in food preservatives. However, the application of EOs is limited because of their strong volatility and easily oxidized. Encapsulation of EOs into nanoemulsions could effectively prevent oxidative [...] Read more.
Essential oils (EOs) have excellent antibacterial activity and are generally recognized as safe (GRAS) for use in food preservatives. However, the application of EOs is limited because of their strong volatility and easily oxidized. Encapsulation of EOs into nanoemulsions could effectively prevent oxidative deterioration. In this study, lemon essential oil−based nanoemulsion (LEO/NE) was prepared by high−pressure homogenization. FT−IR and encapsulation efficiency analysis indicated that LEO was effectively encapsulated in the nanoemulsion. The results of zeta potential changes after 35 d storage indicated that LEO/NE exhibits good stability at room temperature. The effect of LEO/NE on the main soft rot pathogens of kiwifruit Phomopsis sp. was investigated, and the results showed that LEO/NE significantly inhibited spore germination and mycelia growth of Phomopsis sp. by promoting ROS accumulation, intracellular antioxidant enzyme activities, and cell apoptosis. The preservation experiment was carried out by inoculating Phomopsis sp. spores into fresh kiwifruit, and the LEO/NE effectively inhibited soft rot development in kiwifruit in a LEO dose dependent manner. LEO/NE with 1% LEO loading amount has a good effect on preventing postharvest decay of kiwifruit caused by Phomopsis sp. Full article
Article
Sensing Enhancement on Social Networks: The Role of Network Topology
Entropy 2022, 24(5), 738; https://doi.org/10.3390/e24050738 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Sensing and processing information from dynamically changing environments is essential for the survival of animal collectives and the functioning of human society. In this context, previous work has shown that communication between networked agents with some preference towards adopting the majority opinion can [...] Read more.
Sensing and processing information from dynamically changing environments is essential for the survival of animal collectives and the functioning of human society. In this context, previous work has shown that communication between networked agents with some preference towards adopting the majority opinion can enhance the quality of error-prone individual sensing from dynamic environments. In this paper, we compare the potential of different types of complex networks for such sensing enhancement. Numerical simulations on complex networks are complemented by a mean-field approach for limited connectivity that captures essential trends in dependencies. Our results show that, whilst bestowing advantages on a small group of agents, degree heterogeneity tends to impede overall sensing enhancement. In contrast, clustering and spatial structure play a more nuanced role depending on overall connectivity. We find that ring graphs exhibit superior enhancement for large connectivity and that random graphs outperform for small connectivity. Further exploring the role of clustering and path lengths in small-world models, we find that sensing enhancement tends to be boosted in the small-world regime. Full article
Article
Employing a Long-Short-Term Memory Neural Network to Improve Automatic Sleep Stage Classification of Pharmaco-EEG Profiles
Appl. Sci. 2022, 12(10), 5248; https://doi.org/10.3390/app12105248 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
An increasing problem in today’s society is the spiraling number of people suffering from various sleep disorders. The research results presented in this paper support the use of a novel method that employs techniques from the classification of sleep disorders for more accurate [...] Read more.
An increasing problem in today’s society is the spiraling number of people suffering from various sleep disorders. The research results presented in this paper support the use of a novel method that employs techniques from the classification of sleep disorders for more accurate scoring. Applying this novel method will assist researchers with better analyzing subject profiles for recommending prescriptions or to alleviate sleep disorders. In biomedical research, the use of animal models is required to experimentally test the safety and efficacy of a drug in the pre-clinical stage. We have developed a novel LSTM Recurrent Neural Network to process Pharmaco-EEG Profiles of rats to automatically score their sleep–wake stages. The results indicate improvements over the current methods; for the case of combined channels, the model accuracy improved by 1% and 3% in binary or multiclass classifications, respectively, to accuracies of 93% and 82%. In the case of using a single channel, binary and multiclass LSTM models for identifying rodent sleep stages using single or multiple electrode positions for binary or multiclass problems have not been evaluated in prior literature. The results reveal that single or combined channels, and binary or multiclass classification tasks, can be applied in the automatic sleep scoring of rodents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Machine Learning for Biomedical Application)
Article
Functional RNA Dynamics Are Progressively Governed by RNA Destabilization during the Adaptation to Chronic Hypoxia
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(10), 5824; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms23105824 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Previous studies towards reduced oxygen availability have mostly focused on changes in total mRNA expression, neglecting underlying transcriptional and post-transcriptional events. Therefore, we generated a comprehensive overview of hypoxia-induced changes in total mRNA expression, global de novo transcription, and mRNA stability in monocytic [...] Read more.
Previous studies towards reduced oxygen availability have mostly focused on changes in total mRNA expression, neglecting underlying transcriptional and post-transcriptional events. Therefore, we generated a comprehensive overview of hypoxia-induced changes in total mRNA expression, global de novo transcription, and mRNA stability in monocytic THP-1 cells. Since hypoxic episodes often persist for prolonged periods, we further compared the adaptation to acute and chronic hypoxia. While total mRNA changes correlated well with enhanced transcription during short-term hypoxia, mRNA destabilization gained importance under chronic conditions. Reduced mRNA stability not only added to a compensatory attenuation of immune responses, but also, most notably, to the reduction in nuclear-encoded mRNAs associated with various mitochondrial functions. These changes may prevent the futile production of new mitochondria under conditions where mitochondria cannot exert their full metabolic function and are indeed actively removed by mitophagy. The post-transcriptional mode of regulation might further allow for the rapid recovery of mitochondrial capacities upon reoxygenation. Our results provide a comprehensive resource of functional mRNA expression dynamics and underlying transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulatory principles during the adaptation to hypoxia. Furthermore, we uncover that RNA stability regulation controls mitochondrial functions in the context of hypoxia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Mechanisms of Adaptation to Hypoxia)
Review
The Impact of Hypoglycemic Therapy on the Prognosis for Acute Coronary Syndrome in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes
J. Pers. Med. 2022, 12(5), 845; https://doi.org/10.3390/jpm12050845 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
The article discusses particular circumstances of acute coronary syndrome (ACS) in patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D). In addition, the available literature data and clinical guidelines reflecting the role of hypoglycemic therapy as a cardioprotection factor in ACS are analyzed. The article considers [...] Read more.
The article discusses particular circumstances of acute coronary syndrome (ACS) in patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D). In addition, the available literature data and clinical guidelines reflecting the role of hypoglycemic therapy as a cardioprotection factor in ACS are analyzed. The article considers possible protective molecular mechanisms of various groups of drugs in ischemic cardiomyocytes. Full article
Article
Longitudinal Relation between Comprehensive Job Resources and Three Basic Psychological Needs at Work
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(10), 6302; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19106302 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
This study aims to understand the long-term relation between comprehensive job resources and the three basic psychological needs at work (autonomy, relatedness and competence). The study was conducted in a progressive design on a sample of 1025 Polish human service professionals. Based on [...] Read more.
This study aims to understand the long-term relation between comprehensive job resources and the three basic psychological needs at work (autonomy, relatedness and competence). The study was conducted in a progressive design on a sample of 1025 Polish human service professionals. Based on a typology of job resources, the three aggregated job resources index related to the task, leadership and interpersonal relations were created and the effects of each of them on the satisfaction and frustration of the three basic psychological needs, measured after 8 months, were tested. The analysis conducted by using of structural equation modelling showed that task resources are associated with the three basic psychological needs more strongly than two other kinds of resources and that that both leadership and interpersonal resources were related to the satisfaction and frustration of all the needs to the same extent. The results are discussed in the paradigm of the Conservative of Resources and the Self Determination theories. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Occupational Safety and Health)
Article
Does Risser Casting for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis Still Have a Role in the Treatment of Curves Larger Than 40°? A Case Control Study with Bracing
Children 2022, 9(5), 760; https://doi.org/10.3390/children9050760 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
The most common conservative treatment for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (AIS) is bracing. However, several papers questioned the effectiveness of bracing for curves between 40° and 50° Cobb: the effectiveness in preventing curve progression could be as low as 35%. Seriate casting is considered [...] Read more.
The most common conservative treatment for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (AIS) is bracing. However, several papers questioned the effectiveness of bracing for curves between 40° and 50° Cobb: the effectiveness in preventing curve progression could be as low as 35%. Seriate casting is considered a standard approach in early onset scoliosis; however, in the setting of AIS, cast treatment is seldom utilized, with only few studies reporting on its effectiveness. Aim of the study: The main aim of the study is to determine whether a seriate casting with Risser casts associated with bracing is more effective in preventing curve progression than bracing alone in curves larger than 40°. Furthermore, the secondary endpoints were: (1) is there a difference in effectiveness of casting between Thoracic (T) and Thoracolumbar/Lumbar (TL/L) curves? (2) Does the ‘in cast’ correction predicts the treatment outcome? (3) What is the effect on thoracic kyphosis of casting? Methods: This is a retrospective monocentric case–control study; through an Institutional Database search we identified all the patients treated at our institution between 1 January 2017 and 31 December 2020, with a diagnosis of AIS, Risser grade between 0 and 4 at the beginning of the treatment, at least one curve above 40° Cobb and treatment with either seriate Risser casting and bracing (Study Group, SG) or bracing alone (Control Group, CG). Standing full spine X-rays in AP and LL are obtained before and after the cast treatment; only AP standing full spine X-rays ‘in-cast’ are obtained for each cast made. Patients were stratified according to the curve behavior at the end of treatment (Risser 5): progression was defined as ≥6° increase in the curve magnitude or fusion needed; stabilization is defined as a change in curve by ±5°; and improvement was defined as ≥6° reduction in the curve. Results: For the final analysis, 55 compliant patients (12 M, 43 F, mean age 13.5 ± 1.6) were included in the SG and 27 (4 M, 23 F, mean age 13.6 ± 1.6) in the CG. Eight (14.5%) patients in the SG failed the conservative treatment while 14 (51.3%) failed in the CG. Consequently, the Relative Risk for progression in the Efficacy Analysis was 1.8 (95% CI 1, 3–2.6, p = 0.001), and the Number Needed to Treat was 2,4. No significant difference was found between the T and TL/L curves concerning the ‘progressive’ endpoint (z-score 0.263, p = 0.79). The mean percentage of ‘in cast’ curve reduction was 40.1 ± 15.2%; no significant correlation was found between the percentage of correction and the outcome (Spearman Correlation Coefficient 0.18). Finally, no significant differences between baseline and end of FU TK were found (32° ± 16.2 vs. 29.6 ± 15.8, p = ns). Discussion: Seriate Risser casting for AIS with larger curves (>40° Cobb) is effective in reducing curve progression when compared with full time bracing alone in treatment compliant patients. The treatment is equally effective in controlling T and TL/L curves; furthermore, a slight but non-significant decrease in TK was observed in patients treated with casting. This type of treatment should be considered for AIS patients who present with large curves to potentially reduce the percentage of surgical cases. Short Abstract: The aim of the study is to determine whether seriate Risser casting associated with bracing is more effective in preventing curve progression than bracing alone in curves larger than 40°. This is a retrospective monocentric case–control study; we identified all the patients treated at our institution with a diagnosis of AIS, Risser grade 0–4 at the beginning of the treatment, at least one curve above 40° Cobb (35° if treated with bracing alone) and treatment with either seriate Risser casting and bracing (Study Group, SG) or bracing alone (Control Group, CG). Fifty-five patients (12 M, 43 F, mean age 13.5 ± 1.6) were included in the SG and 30 (5 M, 25 F, mean age 13.9 ± 1.7) in the CG. Eight (14,5%) patients in the SG failed the conservative treatment while fifteen (50%) failed in the CG. Consequently, the Relative Risk for progression in the Efficacy Analysis was 1.8 (95% CI 1.3–2.6, p = 0.001), and the Number Needed to Treat was 2,4. Seriate Risser casting for AIS with larger curves (>40°) is effective in reducing curve progression when compared with full time bracing alone. This type of treatment should be considered for AIS patients who present with large curves. Full article
Article
Research on the Measurement Method of Benchmark Price of Rental Housing
Land 2022, 11(5), 759; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11050759 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
China’s rental housing market has just started to develop in recent years. It is relatively imperfect and lacks a clear reference for the pricing of rents, which is not fully transparent. A study on the rent formation mechanism of rental housing has policy [...] Read more.
China’s rental housing market has just started to develop in recent years. It is relatively imperfect and lacks a clear reference for the pricing of rents, which is not fully transparent. A study on the rent formation mechanism of rental housing has policy implications for the construction of a guiding price for the rental housing market and the establishment of a reference basis for the pricing of subsidized housing. Referring to the definition of a benchmark land price, we use data from Beijing to innovatively introduce the concept of benchmark rent. Based on hedonic price theory and the driving factors of benchmark rent, a system of indicators is constructed to explore the mechanism of influencing factors at meso and micro levels on the benchmark rent of market-based rental housing. After LaGrange and robustness tests, it is found that the spatial error model (SEM) is more suitable for benchmark rent determination. We conclude that benchmark rents are affected by spatial relationships caused by spatial heterogeneity and dependency, and that there is significant spatial variation in the factors affecting market-based rental housing benchmark rents. The determination of the benchmark rent can be used as a guiding signal for the market, as a clear signal expectation for the market, government, and tenants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Planning and Housing Market)
Article
Molecular Survey of Vector-Borne Pathogens in Ticks, Sheep Keds, and Domestic Animals from Ngawa, Southwest China
Pathogens 2022, 11(5), 606; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens11050606 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Vector-borne pathogens are mainly transmitted by blood-feeding arthropods such as ticks, mosquitoes, fleas, lice, mites, etc. They pose a significant threat to animal and human health due to their worldwide distribution. Although much work has been performed on these pathogens, some neglected areas [...] Read more.
Vector-borne pathogens are mainly transmitted by blood-feeding arthropods such as ticks, mosquitoes, fleas, lice, mites, etc. They pose a significant threat to animal and human health due to their worldwide distribution. Although much work has been performed on these pathogens, some neglected areas and undiscovered pathogens are still to be further researched. In this study, ticks (Haemaphysalis qinghaiensis), sheep keds (Melophagus ovinus), and blood samples from yaks and goats were collected in Ngawa Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture located on the eastern edge of the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau, Southwest China. Several vector-borne bacterial pathogens were screened and studied. Anaplasma bovis strains representing novel genotypes were detected in ticks (8.83%, 37/419), yak blood samples (45.71%, 64/140), and goat blood samples (58.93%, 33/56). Two spotted fever group (SFG) Rickettsiae, Candidatus Rickettsia jingxinensis, and a novel Rickettsia species named Candidatus Rickettsia hongyuanensis were identified in ticks. Another Rickettsia species closely related to the Rickettsia endosymbiont of Polydesmus complanatus was also detected in ticks. Furthermore, a Coxiella species was detected in ticks (3.34%, 14/419), keds (1.89%, 2/106), and yak blood (0.71%, 1/140). Interestingly, another Coxiella species and a Coxiella-like bacterium were detected in a tick and a goat blood sample, respectively. These results indicate the remarkable diversity of vector-borne pathogens circulating in this area. Further investigations on their pathogenicity to humans and domestic animals are still needed. Full article
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Article
Identification of Genomic Regions Associated with Vine Growth and Plant Height of Soybean
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(10), 5823; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms23105823 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Vining growth (VG) and high plant height (PH) are the physiological traits of wild soybean that preclude their utilization for domesticated soybean breeding and improvement. To identify VG- and PH-related quantitative trait loci (QTLs) in different genetic resources, two populations of recombinant inbred [...] Read more.
Vining growth (VG) and high plant height (PH) are the physiological traits of wild soybean that preclude their utilization for domesticated soybean breeding and improvement. To identify VG- and PH-related quantitative trait loci (QTLs) in different genetic resources, two populations of recombinant inbred lines (RILs) were developed by crossing a cultivated soybean, Zhonghuang39 (ZH39), with two wild soybean accessions, NY27-38 and NY36-87. Each line from the two crosses was evaluated for VG and PH. Three QTLs for VG and three for PH, detected in the ZH39 × NY27-38 population of the RILs, co-located on chromosomes 2, 17 and 19. The VG- and PH-related QTL in the ZH39 × NY36-87 population co-located on chromosome 19. A common QTL shared by the two populations was located on chromosome 19, suggesting that this major QTL was consistently selected for in different genetic backgrounds. The results suggest that different loci are involved in the domestication or adaptations of soybean of various genetic backgrounds. The molecular markers presented here would benefit the fine mapping and cloning of candidate genes underlying the VG and PH co-localized regions and thus facilitate the utilization of wild resources in breeding by avoiding undesirable traits. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics and Novel Techniques for Soybean Yield Enhancement)
Article
FPGA-Based Reconfigurable Convolutional Neural Network Accelerator Using Sparse and Convolutional Optimization
Electronics 2022, 11(10), 1653; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics11101653 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Nowadays, the data flow architecture is considered as a general solution for the acceleration of a deep neural network (DNN) because of its higher parallelism. However, the conventional DNN accelerator offers only a restricted flexibility for diverse network models. In order to overcome [...] Read more.
Nowadays, the data flow architecture is considered as a general solution for the acceleration of a deep neural network (DNN) because of its higher parallelism. However, the conventional DNN accelerator offers only a restricted flexibility for diverse network models. In order to overcome this, a reconfigurable convolutional neural network (RCNN) accelerator, i.e., one of the DNN, is required to be developed over the field-programmable gate array (FPGA) platform. In this paper, the sparse optimization of weight (SOW) and convolutional optimization (CO) are proposed to improve the performances of the RCNN accelerator. The combination of SOW and CO is used to optimize the feature map and weight sizes of the RCNN accelerator; therefore, the hardware resources consumed by this RCNN are minimized in FPGA. The performances of RCNN-SOW-CO are analyzed by means of feature map size, weight size, sparseness of the input feature map (IFM), weight parameter proportion, block random access memory (BRAM), digital signal processing (DSP) elements, look-up tables (LUTs), slices, delay, power, and accuracy. An existing architectures OIDSCNN, LP-CNN, and DPR-NN are used to justify efficiency of the RCNN-SOW-CO. The LUT of RCNN-SOW-CO with Alexnet designed in the Zynq-7020 is 5150, which is less than the OIDSCNN and DPR-NN. Full article
Article
Structural Basis for the Regiospecificity of a Lipase from Streptomyces sp. W007
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(10), 5822; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms23105822 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
The efficiency and accuracy of the synthesis of structural lipids are closely related to the regiospecificity of lipases. Understanding the structural mechanism of their regiospecificity contributes to the regiospecific redesign of lipases for meeting the technological innovation needs. Here, we used a thermostable [...] Read more.
The efficiency and accuracy of the synthesis of structural lipids are closely related to the regiospecificity of lipases. Understanding the structural mechanism of their regiospecificity contributes to the regiospecific redesign of lipases for meeting the technological innovation needs. Here, we used a thermostable lipase from Streptomyces sp. W007 (MAS1), which has been recently reported to show great potential in industry, to gain an insight into the structural basis of its regiospecificity by molecular modelling and mutagenesis experiments. The results indicated that increasing the steric hindrance of the site for binding a non-reactive carbonyl group of TAGs could transform the non-specific MAS1 to a α-specific lipase, such as the mutants G40E, G40F, G40Q, G40R, G40W, G40Y, N45Y, H108W and T237Y (PSI > 80). In addition, altering the local polarity of the site as well as the conformational stability of its composing residues could also impact the regiospecificity. Our present study could not only aid the rational design of the regiospecificity of lipases, but open avenues of exploration for further industrial applications of lipases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Advances in Enzymes and Protein Engineering)
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Article
The Rice Malectin Regulates Plant Cell Death and Disease Resistance by Participating in Glycoprotein Quality Control
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(10), 5819; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms23105819 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
In animals, malectin is well known to play an essential role in endoplasmic reticulum quality control (ERQC) by interacting with ribophorin I, one unit of the oligosaccharyltransferase (OST) complex. However, the functions of malectin in plants remain largely unknown. Here, we demonstrate the [...] Read more.
In animals, malectin is well known to play an essential role in endoplasmic reticulum quality control (ERQC) by interacting with ribophorin I, one unit of the oligosaccharyltransferase (OST) complex. However, the functions of malectin in plants remain largely unknown. Here, we demonstrate the rice OsMLD1 is an ER- and Golgi-associated malectin protein and physically interacts with rice homolog of ribophorin I (OsRpn1), and its disruption leads to spontaneous lesion mimic lesions, enhanced disease resistance, and prolonged ER stress. In addition, there are many more N-glycosites and N-glycoproteins identified from the mld1 mutant than wildtype. Furthermore, OsSERK1 and OsSERK2, which have more N-glycosites in mld1, were demonstrated to interact with OsMLD1. OsMLD1 can suppress OsSERK1- or OsSERK2-induced cell death. Thus, OsMLD1 may play a similar role to its mammalian homologs in glycoprotein quality control, thereby regulating cell death and immunity of rice, which uncovers the function of malectin in plants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Genetics of Rice Disease Resistance)
Article
Organic Amendment Types Influence Soil Properties, the Soil Bacterial Microbiome, and Tomato Growth
Agronomy 2022, 12(5), 1236; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy12051236 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
The overuse of chemical fertilizers deteriorates soil quality, and the application of organic amendments has been proposed as an alternative to mineral fertilizers. This study aimed to investigate the effects of organic amendment types on soil properties, the soil microbiome, and tomato growth. [...] Read more.
The overuse of chemical fertilizers deteriorates soil quality, and the application of organic amendments has been proposed as an alternative to mineral fertilizers. This study aimed to investigate the effects of organic amendment types on soil properties, the soil microbiome, and tomato growth. Tomato seedlings were grown in soils applied with ten fertilizer treatments, including a no fertilization control, a chemical fertilization control, and eight organic amendment treatments. Compared with the chemical fertilization treatment, the application of manure compost significantly increased the shoot dry weight of tomato plants. In addition, manure compost and tea seed meal remarkably increased soil organic matter (SOM) in comparison with the no fertilization and chemical fertilization treatments. Moreover, manure compost significantly increased soil-exchangeable K and Mg. The application of neem cake and manure compost significantly increased both bacterial diversity and richness. The relative abundance of Lysinibacillus was significantly positively related to the shoot and total dry weights of tomato plants, and its relative abundance was positively influenced by SOM and soil-exchangeable K. Overall, the manure compost used in this study can increase SOM, soil-exchangeable K and Mg, and the relative abundance of Lysinibacillus, consequently promoting tomato growth. Full article
Article
Assessment of Economic Sustainability in the Construction Sector: Evidence from Three Developed Countries (the USA, China, and the UK)
Sustainability 2022, 14(10), 6326; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14106326 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
The construction sector plays a significant role in contributing to uplifts in economic stability by generating employment and providing standardized social development. Economic sustainability in the construction sector has been less addressed despite its wide applicability in the economy. This study aimed to [...] Read more.
The construction sector plays a significant role in contributing to uplifts in economic stability by generating employment and providing standardized social development. Economic sustainability in the construction sector has been less addressed despite its wide applicability in the economy. This study aimed to perform a comparative analysis to determine the application of a circular economy in the construction sector toward economic sustainability, along with its long-term forecasting. A time series analysis was used on the construction sector of the United States of America (USA), China, and the United Kingdom (UK) from 1970 to 2020, by taking into account individual effects to propose a framework with global validity. Statistical analysis was performed to analyze the dependence of the construction sector and determine its short- and long-term contributions. The results revealed that the construction sectors in these countries tend to bounce back to equilibrium in the case of short-term effects; however, the construction sector behaves differently with respect to each sector after experiencing long-term effects. The results show that the explanatory power of the forecasting model (R2) was found to be 0.997, 0.992, and 0.996 for the USA, China, and the UK. Based on the concept of the circular economy, it was concluded that the USA will become a leader in attaining sustainability in construction owing to its ability to recover quickly from shocks, and that the USA will become the largest construction sector in terms of GDP, with a USD 0.3 trillion higher GDP than that of the Chinese sector. Meanwhile, there will be no significant change in the construction GDP of the UK up to the end of 2050. Moreover, the speeds of the construction sector toward equilibrium in the long run in the USA, China, and the UK, and regaining of their original positions, is 0.267%, 1.04%, and 0.41% of their original positions, respectively. This study has a significance in acting as a guideline for introducing economic and environmental sustainability in construction policies, because of the potential of the construction sectors to recover from possible recessions in their respective countries. Full article
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Article
Lifestyles Shape the Cytochrome P450 Repertoire of the Bacterial Phylum Proteobacteria
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(10), 5821; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms23105821 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
For the last six decades, cytochrome P450 monooxygenases (CYPs/P450s), heme thiolate proteins, have been under the spotlight due to their regio- and stereo-selective oxidation activities, which has led to the exploration of their applications in almost all known areas of biology. The availability [...] Read more.
For the last six decades, cytochrome P450 monooxygenases (CYPs/P450s), heme thiolate proteins, have been under the spotlight due to their regio- and stereo-selective oxidation activities, which has led to the exploration of their applications in almost all known areas of biology. The availability of many genome sequences allows us to understand the evolution of P450s in different organisms, especially in the Bacteria domain. The phenomenon that “P450s play a key role in organisms’ adaptation vis a vis lifestyle of organisms impacts P450 content in their genome” was proposed based on studies on a handful of individual bacterial groups. To have conclusive evidence, one must analyze P450s and their role in secondary metabolism in species with diverse lifestyles but that belong to the same category. We selected species of the phylum Proteobacteria classes, Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, and Epsilon, to address this research gap due to their diverse lifestyle and ancient nature. The study identified that the lifestyle of alpha-, beta-, gamma-, delta-, and epsilon-proteobacterial species profoundly affected P450 profiles in their genomes. The study determined that irrespective of the species associated with different proteobacterial classes, pathogenic species or species adapted to a simple lifestyle lost or had few P450s in their genomes. On the contrary, species with saprophytic or complex lifestyles had many P450s and secondary metabolite biosynthetic gene clusters. The study findings prove that the phenomenon mentioned above is factual, and there is no link between the number and diversity of P450s and the age of the bacteria. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Microbiology)
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Article
Scale-Invariant Localization of Electric Vehicle Charging Port via Semi-Global Matching of Binocular Images
Appl. Sci. 2022, 12(10), 5247; https://doi.org/10.3390/app12105247 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Automatic charging for electric vehicles has broad development prospects for meeting the personalized service experience of users while overcoming the inherent safety hazards. An identification and positioning approach suitable for engineering applications is the key to promoting automatic charging. In this paper, a [...] Read more.
Automatic charging for electric vehicles has broad development prospects for meeting the personalized service experience of users while overcoming the inherent safety hazards. An identification and positioning approach suitable for engineering applications is the key to promoting automatic charging. In this paper, a low-cost, high-precision method to identify and position charging ports based on SIFT and SGBM is proposed. The feature extraction approach based on SIFT is adopted to produce the difference of Gaussian (DOG) for scale space construction, and the feature matching algorithm with nearest-neighbor search, which is a kind of machine learning, is utilized to yield the map set of matching points. In addition, the disparity calculation is conducted with a semi-global matching algorithm to obtain high-precision positioning results for the charging port. In order to verify the feasibility of the method, a complete identification and positioning experiment of charging port was carried out based on OpenCV and MATLAB. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Complex Systems and Artificial Intelligence)
Article
Minimal Effects of Medium-Chain Triglyceride Supplementation on the Intestinal Microbiome Composition of Premature Infants: A Single-Center Pilot Study
Nutrients 2022, 14(10), 2159; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14102159 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Compared to term infants, the microbiota of preterm infants is less diverse and often enriched for potential pathogens (e.g., members of the family Enterobacteriaceae). Additionally, antibiotics are frequently given to preterm infants, further destabilizing the microbiota and increasing the risk of fungal infections. [...] Read more.
Compared to term infants, the microbiota of preterm infants is less diverse and often enriched for potential pathogens (e.g., members of the family Enterobacteriaceae). Additionally, antibiotics are frequently given to preterm infants, further destabilizing the microbiota and increasing the risk of fungal infections. In a previous communication, our group showed that supplementation of the premature infant diet with medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil reduced the fungal burden of Candida spp. in the gastrointestinal tract. The objective of this study was to determine whether MCT supplementation impacts the bacterial component of the microbiome. Pre-term infants (n = 17) receiving enteral feedings of either infant formula (n = 12) or human milk (n = 5) were randomized to MCT supplementation (n = 9) or no supplementation (n = 8). Fecal samples were taken at randomization and prior to MCT supplementation (Week 0), on days 5–7 (Week 1) and day 21 (Week 3). After DNA extraction from samples, the QIIME2 pipeline was utilized to measure community diversity and composition (genera and phyla). Our findings show that MCT supplementation did not significantly alter microbiota diversity or composition in the gastrointestinal tract. Importantly, there were no significant changes in the family Enterobacteriaceae, suggesting that MCT supplementation did not enrich for potential pathogens. MCT holds promise as a therapeutic intervention for reducing fungal colonization without significant impact on the bacterial composition of the host gastrointestinal tract. Full article
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Article
Study on the Relationship between Water Resources Utilization and Economic Growth in Tarim River Basin from the Perspective of Water Footprint
Water 2022, 14(10), 1655; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14101655 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Taking the Tarim River Basin as the research object, the water footprint was calculated based on the water footprint theory based on the relevant data from 2008 to 2019, and the water resource evaluation system was constructed to analyze the water footprint and [...] Read more.
Taking the Tarim River Basin as the research object, the water footprint was calculated based on the water footprint theory based on the relevant data from 2008 to 2019, and the water resource evaluation system was constructed to analyze the water footprint and water resource utilization of the Tarim River basin from three levels of structure, benefit, and ecology. Based on the water footprint theory, the annual water footprint and GDP of Tarim River Basin were used to construct the Tapio decoupling model, and the decoupling type between water resources utilization and economic growth was obtained. The relationship between water resource utilization and economic growth in Tarim River was analyzed by combining the decoupling type evaluation and water footprint evaluation. The internal benefit is poor, and the external benefit is good; The degree of water resource shortage is on the rise, and the self-sufficiency rate of water resources is large. On the whole, the decoupling strength increases gradually. Decoupling strength has obvious industrial influence characteristics. Based on the above research conclusions, the sustainable economic and ecological development of the Tarim River basin can be realized from two aspects: reducing water footprint and strengthening decoupling intensity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Water Resources Management, Policy and Governance)
Article
Optimization Design of the Landscape Elements in the Lhasa Residential Area Driven by an Orthogonal Experiment and a Numerical Simulation
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(10), 6303; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19106303 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Landscape elements have become an important means to improve the quality of life of residents because of their direct influence on the thermal environment, but the selection and configuration of landscape elements have different effects on human thermal comfort in different climate conditions. [...] Read more.
Landscape elements have become an important means to improve the quality of life of residents because of their direct influence on the thermal environment, but the selection and configuration of landscape elements have different effects on human thermal comfort in different climate conditions. In this research, the typical residential area of Lhasa in Tibet was taken as the research object, the experimental scheme was prepared using an orthogonal test, and the simulation was carried out using ENVI-met to explore the influences of the green configuration, water area, and ground reflectance, as well as their interaction with the thermal environment in winter and summer under alpine climate conditions. Taking the physiological equivalent temperature (PET) as the optimization index, the optimal design scheme for the synergistic effect of the residential landscape elements was determined. The results were as follows. (1) The order of the landscape configuration factors was as follows: green configuration > water area > leaf area index > ground reflectance in summer. In winter, the order was green configuration > water area > ground reflectance > leaf area index (LAI). (2) With the combined driving of the orthogonal test and the numerical simulation, the optimal scheme of the landscape elements was determined, which was “tree shrub lawn, water area ratio 16%, ground reflectance 0.5, and LAI = 3 m2/m3”. (3) Finally, the optimal design strategy of the landscape configuration was proposed for the typical outdoor active space of the Lhasa residential area. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Climate Change, Air Pollution, and Human Health)
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Article
An Improved Ant Colony Algorithm for Urban Bus Network Optimization Based on Existing Bus Routes
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2022, 11(5), 317; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijgi11050317 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Adding new lines on the basis of the existing public transport network is an important way to improve public transport operation networks and the quality of urban public transport service. Aiming at the problem that existing routes are rarely considered in the previous [...] Read more.
Adding new lines on the basis of the existing public transport network is an important way to improve public transport operation networks and the quality of urban public transport service. Aiming at the problem that existing routes are rarely considered in the previous research on public transportation network planning, a public transportation network optimization method based on an ant colony optimization (ACO) algorithm coupled with the existing routes is proposed. First, the actual road network and existing bus lines were abstracted with a graph data structure, and the integration with origin–destination passenger flow data was completed. Second, according to the ACO algorithm, combined with the existing line structure constraints and ant transfer rules at adjacent nodes, new bus-line planning was realized. Finally, according to the change of direct passenger flow in the entire network, the optimal bus-line network optimization scheme was determined. In the process of node transfer calculation, the algorithm adopts the Softmax strategy to realize path diversity and increase the path search range, while avoiding premature convergence and falling into local optimization. Moreover, the elite ant strategy increases the pheromone release on the current optimal path and accelerates the convergence of the algorithm. Based on existing road network and bus lines, the algorithm carries out new line planning, which increases the rationality and practical feasibility of the new bus-line structure. Full article
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Article
Neurogenesis Is Increased in Human Neural Stem Cells by Aβ40 Peptide
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(10), 5820; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms23105820 (registering DOI) - 22 May 2022
Abstract
Amyloid-β 40 peptides [Aβ1-40 (Aβ40)] are present within amyloid plaques in the brains of patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Even though Aβ peptides are considered neurotoxic, they can mediate many biological processes, both in adult brains and throughout brain development. However, the physiological [...] Read more.
Amyloid-β 40 peptides [Aβ1-40 (Aβ40)] are present within amyloid plaques in the brains of patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Even though Aβ peptides are considered neurotoxic, they can mediate many biological processes, both in adult brains and throughout brain development. However, the physiological function of these Aβ peptides remains poorly understood, and the existing data are sometimes controversial. Here, we analyze and compare the effects of monomeric Aβ40 on the biology of differentiating human neural stem cells (human NSCs). For that purpose, we used a model of human NSCs called hNS1. Our data demonstrated that Aβ40 at high concentrations provokes apoptotic cellular death and the damage of DNA in human NSCs while also increasing the proliferation and favors neurogenesis by raising the percentage of proliferating neuronal precursors. These effects can be mediated, at least in part, by β-catenin. These results provide evidence of how Aβ modulate/regulate human NSC proliferation and differentiation, suggesting Aβ40 may be a pro-neurogenic factor. Our data could contribute to a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved in AD pathology and to the development of human NSC-based therapies for AD treatment, since these results could then be used in diagnosing the disease at early stages and be applied to the development of new treatment options. Full article
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