摘要： A negative correlation was found to exist between the low-energy spectral index and the redshift of gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) by Amati et al. It was later confirmed by Geng & Huang and Gruber et al., but the correlation was also found to be quite dispersive when the sample size was significantly expanded. In this study, we have established two even larger samples of GRBs to further examine the correlation. One of our samples consists of 316 GRBs detected by the Swift satellite, and the other one consists of 80 GRBs detected by the Fermi satellite. It is found that there is no correlation between the two parameters for the Swift sample, but there does exist a weak negative correlation for the Fermi sample. The correlation becomes even more significant when the spectral index at the peak flux is considered. It is argued that the absence of the correlation in the Swift sample may be due to the fact that Swift has a very narrow energy response so that it could not measure the low-energy spectral index accurately enough. Further studies based on even larger GRB samples are solicited.
摘要： Co-phase and co-focus detection is one of the key technologies for large-aperture segmented mirror telescopes. In this paper, a new edge sensor based on fringes of equal thickness is developed, which can detect each segment's relative piston, tilt, and tip errors from the interferograms. Based on the co-focus demand for many ground-based seeing limited segmented mirror telescopes, an edge sensor prototype based on such a principle is built and applied in the indoor segmented mirror experiment system in the lab. According to the co-focus requirement of the Large Sky Area Multi-Object Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope, many simulations and experiments are carried out for co-focus error detection of the segmented mirror system. Experiment results show that the co-focus accuracy is better than 0."02 rms, which can meet the co-focus requirements of most large or extremely large segmented mirror astronomical telescopes.
摘要： Owing to the immobility of traditional reactors and spallation neutron sources, the demand for compact thermal neutron radiography (CTNR) based on accelerator neutron sources has rapidly increased in industrial applications. Recently, thermal neutron radiography experiments based on a D-T neutron generator performed by Hefei Institutes of Physical Science indicated a significant resolution deviation between the experimental results and the values calculated using the traditional resolution model. The experimental result was up to 23% lower than the calculated result, which hinders the achievement of the design goal of a compact neutron radiography system. A GEANT4 Monte Carlo code was developed to simulate the CTNR process, aiming to identify the key factors leading to resolution deviation. The effects of a low collimation ratio and high-energy neutrons were analyzed based on the neutron beam environment of the CTNR system. The results showed that the deviation was primarily caused by geometric distortion at low collimation ratios and radiation noise induced by high 1 energy neutrons. Additionally, the theoretical model was modified by considering the imaging position and radiation noise factors. The modified theoretical model was in good agreement with the experimental results, and the maximum deviation was reduced to 4.22%. This can be useful for the high-precision design of CTNR systems.
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.