Interactions between doxorubicin (DOX) and iron generate reactive oxygen species and contribute to DOX-induced heart failure. Hydrogen, as a selective antioxidant, is a promising potential therapeutic option for the treatment of a variety of diseases. Therefore, we investigated the preventive effects of hydrogen treatment on DOX-induced heart failure in rats. We found that cardiac function was significantly improved and that the plasma levels of oxidative-stress markers and myocardial autophagic activity were decreased in animals treated with hydrogen-containing saline. Therefore, we conclude that hydrogen-containing saline may have beneficial effects for doxorubicin-induced heart failure.
Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common form of inherited intellectual disability and is caused by a loss of function of the fragile X mental retardation (fmr1) gene. Animal fmr1-knockout (KO) models are not only of interest for the study of FXS, but have also important implications for our understanding of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Here we report the behavioral changes in fmr1-knockout zebrafish in an open field with two white and two transparent walls. The neophobic responses that in wild-type (WT) zebrafish normally occur during the first 5-10 min in an unfamiliar environment (such as freezing, hypo-activity and preferences for the bottom and opaque walls of the tank), were weakened in fmr1 mutants, suggesting a reduction of novelty-induced anxiety. The fmr1-KO zebrafish showed somewhat increased vertical activity beyond the 'neophobic phase', but no overall hyperactivity. The mutants demonstrated a clear habituation-independent preference for the transparent walls. Whether this was attributable to altered spatial information processing or to reduced avoidance of open spaces is discussed. Finally, since restrictive repetitive (or stereotypical) behaviors are frequently present in FXS and ASD patients, we analyzed relative turning angles, directional and preferential turning ratios and performed frequency-domain analysis. However, no indications of abnormal movement patterning were detected. The possible reasons for the absence of stereotypical behaviors are discussed in terms of behavioral endpoint selection and of eliciting conditions. Overall, our findings are consistent with those reported in fmr1-KO mice and suggest that further analysis of the fmr1-KO zebrafish model has potential to deepen our understanding of FXS and ASD.
Soil management practices, such as tillage method or straw return, could alter soil organic carbon (C) contents. However, the effects of tillage method or straw return on soil organic C (SOC) have showed inconsistent results in different soil/climate/cropping systems. The Yangtze River Delta of China is the main production region of rice and wheat, and rice-wheat rotation is the most important cropping system in this region. However, few studies in this region have been conducted to assess the effects of different tillage methods combined with straw return on soil labile C fractions in the rice-wheat rotation system. In this study, a field experiment was used to evaluate the effects of different tillage methods, straw return and their interaction on soil total organic C (TOC) and labile organic C fractions at three soil depths (0-7, 7-14 and 14-21 cm) for a rice-wheat rotation in Yangzhong of the Yangtze River Delta of China. Soil TOC, easily oxidizable C (EOC), dissolved organic C (DOC) and microbial biomass C (MBC) contents were measured in this study. Soil TOC and labile organic C fractions contents were significantly affected by straw returns, and were higher under straw return treatments than non-straw return at three depths. At 0-7 cm depth, soil MBC was significantly higher under plowing tillage than rotary tillage, but EOC was just opposite. Rotary tillage had significantly higher soil TOC than plowing tillage at 7-14 cm depth. However, at 14-21 cm depth, TOC, DOC and MBC were significantly higher under plowing tillage than rotary tillage except for EOC. Consequently, under short-term condition, rice and wheat straw both return in rice-wheat rotation system could increase SOC content and improve soil quality in the Yangtze River Delta.
Naturally, simultaneous interactions occurred among plants, herbivores, and soil biota, that is, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF), nematodes, and fungal pathogens. These multiple interactions play fundamental roles in driving process, structure, and functioning of ecosystems. In this study, we conducted a meta-analysis with 144 papers to investigate the interactions between AMF and plant biotic stressors and their effects on plant growth performance. We found that AMF enhanced plant tolerance to herbivores, nematodes, and fungal pathogens. We also found reciprocal inhibition between AMF and nematodes as well as fungal pathogens, but unidirectional inhibition for AMF on herbivores. Negative effects of AMF on biotic stressors of plants depended on herbivore feeding sites and actioning modes of fungal pathogens. More performance was reduced in root-feeding than in shoot-feeding herbivores and in rotting- than in wilt-fungal pathogens. However, no difference was found for AMF negative effects between migratory and sedentary nematodes. In return, nematodes and fungal pathogens generated more reduction of root colonization in Non-Glomeraceae than in Glomeraceae. Our results suggested that AMF positive effects on plants might be indirectly mediated by competitive inhibition with biotic stressors of plants. These positive and negative interactions make potential contributions to maintaining ecosystem stability and functioning.
Like many aquatic animals, zebrafish (Danio rerio) moves in a 3D space. It is thus preferable to use a 3D recording system to study its behavior. The presented automatic video tracking system accomplishes this by using a mirror system and a calibration procedure that corrects for the considerable error introduced by the transition of light from water to air. With this system it is possible to record both single and groups of adult zebrafish. Before use, the system has to be calibrated. The system consists of three modules: Recording, Path Reconstruction, and Data Processing. The step-by-step protocols for calibration and using the three modules are presented. Depending on the experimental setup, the system can be used for testing neophobia, white aversion, social cohesion, motor impairments, novel object exploration etc. It is especially promising as a first-step tool to study the effects of drugs or mutations on basic behavioral patterns. The system provides information about vertical and horizontal distribution of the zebrafish, about the xyz-components of kinematic parameters (such as locomotion, velocity, acceleration, and turning angle) and it provides the data necessary to calculate parameters for social cohesions when testing shoals.
Wax deposition during the production and transportation of crude oil is a global problem in oil industries. Fabrication of underwater self-cleaning materials can provide a new strategy to prohibit wax deposition. In this paper, conversion films on carbon steel with hierarchical micro/nanostructure are fabricated through a novel in situ alternating-current deposition method. The flower-like conversion films are composed of amorphous iron phosphate and present superhydrophilicity in air and superoleophobicity underwater. The conversion films can efficiently prevent the deposition of wax in water-contained crude oil, showing excellent self-cleaning performance. This facile and low-cost fabrication of a self-cleaning film provides a good strategy for underwater-oil prevention.
Reversible surface wetting behavior is a hot topic of research because of the potential engineering applications. In the present work, a hierarchical micro/nanostructure is fabricated on brass by alternate current (AC) etching. The superhydrophilic as-prepared etched brass (EB) turns into superhydrophobic after the modification of stearic acid for 1 min. After annealing at 350 °C for 5 min, the superhydrophobic modified EB surface becomes superhydrophilic again. Furthermore, the annealed EB can restore the superhydrophobicity with the remodification of stearic acid. The wetting transition is realized by stearic acid modification and annealing rapidly in 6 min. The wetting transition mechanism is discussed based on the surface chemical analysis. This method is facile and suitable for the construction of large-scale and complex brass surfaces with tunable wetting behaviors.
Understanding the different patterns of anxiety-like behavioral responses is of great interest for pharmacological and genetic research. Here we report the effects of 3.5-hr habituation, buspirone and ethanol on those responses in shoaling zebrafish (Danio rerio). Since in these experiments we used a container with white walls, the effects of black-vs.-white walls were tested in a separate experiment. An important objective was to determine whether factors unrelated to anxiety played a role in modulating the responses. The anxiety-like behavioral responses studied here are social cohesion, distance from bottom and bottom-dwell time, radial distribution (to study thigmotaxis), transparent-wall preference (to study escape responses), locomotion and freezing. The experimental conditions yielded distinctly different response patterns. Thigmotaxis was the most obvious response to white walls and it was significantly reduced after 3.5-hr habituation. It was not affected by any of the drugs. The reduction of social cohesion after 3.5-hr habituation and in the 0.5% ethanol group was probably the most interesting effect seen in this study. A role of anxiety herein was suggested but could not be established with certainty. Other hypotheses were also discussed. The large increase of distance-from-bottom resulting in swimming close to the water surface, which occurred in both buspirone groups and in the 0.5%-ethanol group, is most likely not an anxiolytic response, because of the discrepancy with the in the literature well-established time-course and the absence of any effect of 3.5-hr habituation or black walls on vertical measures. Finally, locomotion and duration freezing could not be specifically taken as indicators for the state of anxiety and the results concerning transparent-wall preference were not sufficient clear. We conclude that the neuronal and ethological mechanisms underlying the effects of habituation, white-aversion, buspirone and ethanol on anxiety-like behavioral responses are complex and need further exploration.
Changing the sheets: Hollow TiO? porous nanosheets (HTPNs) are prepared on ITO glass through an improved TiO? polycrystalline shell-assisted cation exchange by using ZnO porous nanosheets (grown by using indirect electrodeposition) as a template. Quantum dot-sensitized solar cells based on HTPNs exhibit a high performance, and other photoelectrochemical devices are expected to be prepared based on HTPNs.
Because of its highly developed social character, zebrafish is a promising model system for the study of the genetic and neurochemical basis of altered social engagement such as is common in autism and schizophrenia. The traditional shoaling paradigm investigates social cohesion in homogeneous groups of zebrafish. However, the social dynamics of mixed groups is gaining interest from a therapeutic point of view and thus warrants animal modeling. Furthermore, mutant zebrafish are not always available in large numbers. Therefore, we developed a new paradigm that allows exploring shoaling in heterogeneous groups. The effects of MK-801, a non-competitive antagonist of the glutamate N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor, on social cohesion were studied to evaluate the paradigm. The drug has previously been shown to mimic aspects of autism and schizophrenia. Our results show that a single MK-801-treated zebrafish reduced social cohesion of the entire shoal drastically. Preliminary observations suggest that the social dynamics of the shoal as a whole was altered.
Air and soil pollution from traffic has been considered as a critical issue to crop production and food safety, however, few efforts have been paid on distinguish the source origin of traffic-related contaminants in rice plant along highway. Therefore, we investigated metals (Pb, Cd, Cr, Zn and Cu) concentrations and stable Pb isotope ratios in rice plants exposed and unexposed to highway traffic pollution in Eastern China in 2008. Significant differences in metals concentrations between the exposed and unexposed plants existed in leaf for Pb, Cd and Zn, in stem only for Zn, and in grain for Pb and Cd. About 46% of Pb and 41% of Cd in the grain were attributed to the foliar uptake from atmosphere, and there were no obvious contribution of atmosphere to the accumulations of Cr, Zn and Cu in grain. Except for Zn, all of the heavy metals in stem were attributed to the root uptake from soil, although significant accumulations of Pb and Cd from atmosphere existed in leaf. This indicated that different processes existed in the subsequent translocation of foliar-absorbed heavy metals between rice organs. The distinct separation of stable Pb isotope ratios among rice grain, leaf, stem, soil and vehicle exhaust further provided evidences on the different pathways of heavy metal accumulation in rice plant. These results suggested that further more attentions should be paid to the atmospheric deposition of heavy metals from traffic emission when plan crop layout for food safety along highway.
Wire-shaped quantum dots-sensitized solar cells (WS-QDSCs) based on nanosheets and nanowires were fabricated and investigated for this paper. The nanosheets grown on stainless steel (SS) wire by electrodeposition were mainly composed of Zn?(OH)?Cl?·H?O and most of the Zn?(OH)?Cl?·H?O was converted to ZnO by post-treatment, and ZnO nanowires were directly grown on SS wire by the hydrothermal method. CdS QDs were deposited on nanosheets and nanowires by successive ionic layer adsorption and reaction method. The results of photoelectrochemical performance indicated that WS-QDSCs showed a similar conversion efficiency in polysulfide and Na?SO? electrolytes, while the WS-QDSCs based on the Cu2S counter electrode achieved much higher performance than those based on SS and Cu counter electrodes. By optimizing electrodeposition duration, the WS-QDSCs based on nanosheets presented the highest conversion efficiency of 0.60% for the duration of 20 min. Performance comparison indicated that the WS-QDSC based on nanosheets showed very superior performance to that based on the nanowires with similar film thickness.
The levonorgestrel intrauterine system (LNG-IUS) is a widely recognized intrauterine anti-fertility system, which can alleviate symptoms of uterine leiomyoma. This study aims to evaluate leimyoma cell growth inhibition induced by high concentrations of LNG.
Behavioral changes in zebrafish induced by acute administration of buspirone have been interpreted to be the result of reduced anxiety. The purpose of the current study was to determine whether the effects of short-term and mid-term habituation to an open field corroborated the anxiolytic hypothesis. We exposed single zebrafish for 60 min to 5 mgL buspirone and tested them twice, immediately after exposure and again 3.5 h later. Each session lasted 20 min. Distance from bottom of tank, velocity, duration freezing, distance from center and horizontal distribution, and preferred spatial location were analyzed with a 3-D tracking system. In the early session (starting at 10:30), 20 min habituation of control zebrafish only marginally increased distance from bottom, which was still 90% higher in zebrafish treated with buspirone. When extending the habituation to 3.5 h, the picture became more complex. Distance from bottom did not further increase in control zebrafish. More importantly, some signs of increased anxiety were present in the buspirone group, such as increased freezing, reduced velocity, and increased bottom-dwelling. However, analyzing data of individual fish excluded rebound anxiety as unlikely. The delayed effects might be drug side effects, such as motor impairment and/or dizziness. The immediate and the delayed effects of buspirone have the appearance to be unrelated.
One-dimensional flexible solar cells were fabricated through vertical growth of ZnO nanowires on freestanding carbon fibers and subsequent deposition of CdS quantum dots (QDs). Under light illumination, excitons were generated in the CdS QDs and dissociated in the ZnO/CdS interface. Photoelectrochemical characterization indicates that fiber quantum dot-sensitized solar cells (QDSCs) could effectively absorb visible light and convert it to electric energy. The photoelectrochemical performance was enhanced after the deposition of a ZnS passivating layer on the CF/ZnO/CdS surface. The highest conversion efficiency of about 0.006% was achieved by the fiber QDSCs. A higher conversion efficiency was expected to be achieved after some important parameters and cell structure were optimized and improved.
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