摘要：Abstract: A knowledge of the tree-ring stable nitrogen isotope ratio (δ15N) can deepen our understanding of forest ecosystem dynamics by indicating the long-term availability, cycling and sources of nitrogen (N). However, the radial mobility of N blurs the interannual variations in the long-term N records. Previous studies of the chemical extraction of tree rings before analysis had produced inconsistent results and it is still unclear whether it is necessary to pre-treat wood samples from specific tree species to remove soluble N compounds before determining the δ15N values. We compared the effects of pre-treatment with organic solvents and hot ultrapure water on the N concentration and δ15N of tree rings from endemic Qinghai spruce (Picea crassifolia) growing in the interior of the central Qilian Mountains, China, during the last 60 a. We assessed the effects of different preparation protocols on the removal of the labile N compounds and investigated the need to pre-treat wood samples before determining the δ15N values of tree rings. Increasing trends of the tree-ring N concentration were consistently observed in both the extracted and unextracted wood samples. The total N removed by extraction with organic solvents was about 17.60%, with a significantly higher amount in the sapwood section (P<0.01). The δ15N values of tree rings decreased consistently from 1960 to 2019 in both the extracted and unextracted wood samples. Extraction with organic solvents increased the δ15N values markedly by about 5.2‰ and reduced the variations in the δ15N series. However, extraction with hot ultrapure water had little effect, with only a slight decrease in the δ15N values of about 0.5‰. Our results showed that the radial pattern in the inter-ring movement of N in Qinghai spruce was not minimized by extraction with either organic solvents or hot ultrapure water. It is unnecessary to conduct hot ultrapure water extraction for the wood samples from Qinghai spruce because of its negligible effect on the removal of the labile N. The δ15N variation trend of tree rings in the unextracted wood samples was not influenced by the heartwood–sapwood transition zone. We suggest that the δ15N values of the unextracted wood samples of the climate-sensitive Qinghai spruce could be used to explore the ecophysiological dynamics while focusing on the long-term variations.
Abstract: Caragana korshinskii Kom. and Tamarix ramosissima Ledeb. are pioneer shrubs for water and soil conservation, and for windbreak and sand fixation in arid and semi-arid areas. Understanding the water use characteristics of different pioneer shrubs at different ages is of great importance for their survival when extreme rainfall occurs. In recent years, the stable isotope tracing technique has been used in exploring the water use strategies of plants. However, the widespread δ2H offsets of stem water from its potential sources result in conflicting interpretations of water utilization of plants in arid and semi-arid areas. In this study, we used three sets of hydrogen and oxygen stable isotope data (δ2H and δ18O, corrected δ2H_c1 based on SW-excess and δ18O, and corrected δ2H_c2 based on −8.1‰ and δ18O) as inputs for the MixSIAR model to explore the water use characteristics of C. korshinskii and T. ramosissima at different ages and in response to rainfall. The results showed that δ2H_c1 and δ18O have the best performance, and the contribution rate of deep soil water was underestimated because of δ2H offset. During the dry periods, C. korshinskii and T. ramosissima at different ages both obtained mostly water from deeper soil layers. After rainfall, the proportions of surface (0–10 cm) and shallow (10–40 cm) soil water for C. korshinskii and T. ramosissima at different ages both increased. Nevertheless, there were different response mechanisms of these two plants for rainfall. In addition, C. korshinskii absorbed various potential water sources, while T. ramosissima only used deep water. These flexible water use characteristics of C. korshinskii and T. ramosissima might facilitate the coexistence of plants once extreme rainfall occurs. Thus, reasonable allocation of different plants may be a good vegetation restoration program in western Chinese Loess Plateau.
摘要： As part of a larger project to examine the richness and distribution of wildlife in Kumtag Desert area, we conducted camera trapping surveys during the period 2010–2012 at seven watering sites in an arid region of the Altun Mountains in western China. Information on activity patterns of the wild bactrian camel (Camelus ferus), kiang (Equus kiang), goitered gazelle (Gazella subgutturosa), argali (Ovis ammon), blue sheep (Pseudois nayaur), red fox (Vulpes vulpes), and wolf (Canis lupus) was obtained. We found that the wild camel, kiang, goitered gazelle, argali, and blue sheep were predominantly diurnal at watering sites, whereas red fox and wolf were nocturnal. Five herbivores partitioned the use of watering sites in a temporal manner to minimize the risk of predation by carnivores. The wild camel was the dominant herbivorous species at the watering sites. The kiang, goitered gazelle, argali, and blue sheep displayed adaptive water use by altering spatial or temporal patterns based on the presence or absence of wild camel, to minimize the risk of interspeciﬁc strife. These results are suggestive of the differences in activity patterns that might modulate water partitioning by different species, and provide insights for the development of conservation strategies for integrated species and decisions regarding water development in the Altun Mountains.
摘要：A high luminosity Circular Electron Positron Collider (CEPC) as a Higgs Factory will be helpful to the precision measurement of the Higgs mass. The signal-background interference effect is carefully studied for the Higgs diphoton decay mode in the associated Z boson production at the future e+e− colliders at energy 246GeV. The mass shifts go up from about 20MeV to 50MeV for the experimental mass resolution ranging from 0.8GeV to 2GeV.
摘要：Shiga-like toxins (Stxs), produced by pathogenic Escherichia coli, are a major virulence factor involved in severe diseases in human and animals. These toxins are ribosome-inactivating proteins, and treatment for diseases caused by them is not available. Therefore, there is an urgent need for agents capable of effectively targeting this lethal toxin. In this study, we identified baicalin, a flavonoid compound used in Chinese traditional medicine, as a compound against Shiga-like toxin 2 (Stx2). We found that baicalin significantly improves renal function and reduces Stx2-induced lethality in mice. Further experiments revealed that baicalin induces the formation of oligomers by the toxin by direct binding. We also identified the residues important for such interactions and analyzed their roles in binding baicalin by biophysical and biochemical analyses. Our results establish baicalin as a candidate compound for the development of therapeutics against diseases caused by Stxs.
摘要：Toxic ribosome-inactivating proteins abolish cell viability by inhibiting protein synthesis. Ricin, a member of these lethal proteins, is a potential bioterrorism agent. Despite the grave challenge posed by these toxins to public health, post-exposure treatment for intoxication caused by these agents currently is unavailable. In this study, we report the identification of baicalin extracted from Chinese herbal medicine as a compound capable of inhibiting the activity of ricin. More importantly, post-exposure treatment with baicalin significantly increased the survival of mice poisoned by ricin. We determined the mechanism of action of baicalin by solving the crystal structure of its complex with the A chain of ricin (RTA) at 2.2 angstrom resolution, which revealed that baicalin interacts with two RTA molecules at a novel binding site by hydrogen bond networks and electrostatic force interactions, suggesting its role as molecular glue of the RTA. Further biochemical and biophysical analyses validated the amino acids directly involved in binding the inhibitor, which is consistent with the hypothesis that baicalin exerts its inhibitory effects by inducing RTA to form oligomers in solution, a mechanism that is distinctly different from previously reported inhibitors. This work offers promising leads for the development of therapeutics against ricin and probably other ribosome-inactivating proteins.
摘要：Biochemical modifications to mRNA, especially N6-methyladenosine (m(6)A) and 5-methylcytosine (m(5)C), have been recently shown to be associated with crucial biological functions. Despite the intriguing advancements, little is known so far about the dynamic landscape of RNA methylome across different cell types and how the epitranscriptome is regulated at the system level by enzymes, i.e., RNA methyltransferases and demethylases. To investigate this issue, a meta-analysis of m(6)A MeRIP-Seq datasets collected from 10 different experimental conditions (cell type/tissue or treatment) is performed, and the combinatorial epitranscriptome, which consists of 42758 m(6)A sites, is extracted and divided into 3 clusters, in which the methylation sites are likely to be hyper- or hypo-methylated simultaneously (or co-methylated), indicating the sharing of a common methylation regulator. Four different clustering approaches are used, including K-means, hierarchical clustering (HC), Bayesian factor regression model (BFRM) and nonnegative matrix factorization (NMF) to unveil the co-methylation patterns. To validate whether the patterns are corresponding to enzymatic regulators, i.e., RNA methyltransferases or demethylases, the target sites of a known m(6)A regulator, fat mass and obesity-associated protein (FTO), are identified from an independent mouse MeRIP-Seq dataset and lifted to human. Our study shows that 3 out of the 4 clustering approaches used can successfully identify a group of methylation sites overlapping with FTO target sites at a significance level of 0.05 (after multiple hypothesis adjustment), among which, the result of NMF is the most significant (p-value 2.81 x 10(-06)). We defined a new approach evaluating the consistency between two clustering results which shows that clustering results of different methods are highly correlated strongly indicating the existence of co-methylation patterns. Consistent with recent studies, a number of cancer and neuronal disease-related bimolecular functions are enriched in the identified clusters, which are biological functions that can be regulated at the epitranscriptional level, indicating the pharmaceutical prospect of RNA N6-methyladenosine-related studies. This result successfully reveals the linkage between the global RNA co-methylation patterns embedded in the epitranscriptomic data under multiple experimental conditions and the latent enzymatic regulators, suggesting a promising direction towards a more comprehensive understanding of the epitranscriptome.
摘要：We study the thermodynamics and non-relativistic hydrodynamics of the holographic fluid on a finite cutoff surface in the Gauss-Bonnet gravity. It is shown that the isentropic flow of the fluid is equivalent to a radial component of gravitational field equations. We use the non-relativistic fluid expansion method to study the Einstein-Maxwell-dilaton system with a negative cosmological constant, and obtain the holographic incompressible forced Navier-Stokes equations of the dual fluid at AdS boundary and at a finite cutoff surface, respectively. The concrete forms of external forces are given. (c) 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.