Recent Submissions

  • Skyrmion battery effect via inhomogeneous magnetic anisotropy

    Hao, Xiawei; Zhuo, Fengjun; Manchon, Aurelien; Wang, Xiaolin; Li, Hang; Cheng, Zhenxiang (Applied Physics Reviews, AIP Publishing, 2021-04-14) [Article]
    Magnetic skyrmions are considered a promising candidate for the next-generation information processing technology. Being topologically robust, magnetic skyrmions are swirling spin textures that can be used in a broad range of applications from memory devices and logic circuits to neuromorphic computing. In a magnetic medium lacking inversion symmetry, magnetic skyrmion arises as a result of the interplay among magnetic exchange interaction, Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction, and magnetic anisotropy. Instrumental to the integrated skyrmion-based applications are the creation and manipulation of magnetic skyrmions at a designated location, absent any need of a magnetic field. In this paper, we propose a generic design strategy to achieve that goal and a model system to demonstrate its feasibility. By implementing a disk-shaped thin film heterostructure with an inhomogeneous perpendicular magnetic anisotropy, stable sub-100-nm size skyrmions can be generated without magnetic field. This structure can be etched out via, for example, focused ion beam microscope. Using micromagnetic simulation, we show that such heterostructure not only stabilizes the edge spins of the skyrmion but also protects its rotation symmetry. Furthermore, we may switch the spin texture between skyrmionic and vortex-like ones by tuning the slope of perpendicular anisotropy using a bias voltage. When embedded into a magnetic conductor and under a spin polarized current, such heterostructure emits skyrmions continuously and may function as a skyrmion source. This unique phenomenon is dubbed a skyrmion battery effect. Our proposal may open a novel venue for the realization of all-electric skyrmion-based devices.
  • Significant variants of type 2 diabetes in the Arabian Region through an Integration of exome databases.

    Goto, Kosuke; Mineta, Katsuhiko; Miyazaki, Satoru; Gojobori, Takashi (PloS one, Public Library of Science (PLoS), 2021-04-13) [Article]
    Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is a major global health issue, and it has also become one of the major diseases in Arab countries. In addition to the exome databases that have already been established, whole exome sequencing data for the Greater Middle East are now available. To elucidate the genetic features of T2D in the Arabian Peninsula, we integrated two exome databases (gnomAD exome and the Greater Middle East Variome Project) with clinical information from the ClinVar. After the integration, we obtained 18 single nucleotide polymorphisms and found two statistically and clinically significant variants in two genes, SLC30A8 rs13266634 and KCNJ11 rs5219. Interestingly, the two genes are linked to the uptake of the metals, Zn and K respectively, which indicating the regional features of the genetic variants. The frequency of the risk allele of rs13266634 among individuals in the Arabian Peninsula was higher than among individuals in other regions. On the other hand, the frequency of the risk allele of rs5219 in the Arabian Peninsula was lower than that in other regions. We identified and characterized T2D-related variants that show unique tendencies in the Arabian Peninsula. Our analyses contribute to and provide guidance for the clinical research of T2D in the Arabian Peninsula.
  • Can a recipe for the growth of single-layer graphene on copper be used in different chemical vapor deposition reactors?

    Hakami, Marim A.; Deokar, Geetanjali Baliram; Smajic, Jasmin; Batra, Nitinkumar; Costa, Pedro Miguel Ferreira Joaquim (Chemistry, an Asian journal, Wiley, 2021-04-13) [Article]
    In the last decade, catalytic chemical vapor deposition (CVD) has been intensively explored for the growth of single-layer graphene (SLG). Despite the scattering of guidelines and procedures, variables such as the surface texture/chemistry of catalyst metal foils, carbon feedstock, and growth process parameters have been well-scrutinized. Still, questions remain on how best to standardize the growth procedure. The possible correlation of recipes between different CVD setups is an example. Here, two thermal CVD reactors were explored to grow graphene on Cu foil. The design of these setups was entirely distinct, one being a "showerhead" cold-wall type, whereas the other represented the popular "tubular" hot-wall type. Upon standardizing the Cu foil surface, it was possible to develop a recipe for cm 2 -scale SLG growth that differed only on the carrier gas flow rate used in the two reactors.
  • Improved characterisation of clinical text through ontology-based vocabulary expansion.

    Slater, Luke T; Bradlow, William; Ball, Simon; Hoehndorf, Robert; Gkoutos, Georgios V (Journal of biomedical semantics, Springer Science and Business Media LLC, 2021-04-13) [Article]
    BackgroundBiomedical ontologies contain a wealth of metadata that constitutes a fundamental infrastructural resource for text mining. For several reasons, redundancies exist in the ontology ecosystem, which lead to the same entities being described by several concepts in the same or similar contexts across several ontologies. While these concepts describe the same entities, they contain different sets of complementary metadata. Linking these definitions to make use of their combined metadata could lead to improved performance in ontology-based information retrieval, extraction, and analysis tasks.ResultsWe develop and present an algorithm that expands the set of labels associated with an ontology class using a combination of strict lexical matching and cross-ontology reasoner-enabled equivalency queries. Across all disease terms in the Disease Ontology, the approach found 51,362 additional labels, more than tripling the number defined by the ontology itself. Manual validation by a clinical expert on a random sampling of expanded synonyms over the Human Phenotype Ontology yielded a precision of 0.912. Furthermore, we found that annotating patient visits in MIMIC-III with an extended set of Disease Ontology labels led to semantic similarity score derived from those labels being a significantly better predictor of matching first diagnosis, with a mean average precision of 0.88 for the unexpanded set of annotations, and 0.913 for the expanded set.ConclusionsInter-ontology synonym expansion can lead to a vast increase in the scale of vocabulary available for text mining applications. While the accuracy of the extended vocabulary is not perfect, it nevertheless led to a significantly improved ontology-based characterisation of patients from text in one setting. Furthermore, where run-on error is not acceptable, the technique can be used to provide candidate synonyms which can be checked by a domain expert.
  • Wide-field-of-view optical detectors using fused fiber-optic tapers

    Alkhazragi, Omar; Trichili, Abderrahmen; Ashry, Islam; Ng, Tien Khee; Alouini, Mohamed-Slim; Ooi, Boon S. (Optics Letters, The Optical Society, 2021-04-12) [Article]
    Photodetectors used in wireless applications suffer from a trade-off between their response speeds and their active areas, which limits the received signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). Conventional light-focusing elements used to improve the SNR narrow the field of view (FOV). Herein, we demonstrate a versatile imaging light-focusing element featuring a wide FOV and high optical gain using fused fiber-optic tapers. To verify the practicality of the proposed design, we demonstrated and tested a wide-FOV optical detector for optical wireless communication that can be used for wavelengths ranging from the visible-light band to the near infrared. The proposed detector offers improvements over luminescent wide-FOV detectors, including higher efficiency, a broader modulation bandwidth, and indefinite stability.
  • Snapshot space-time holographic three-dimensional particle tracking velocimetry

    Chen, Ni; Wang, Congli; Heidrich, Wolfgang (Laser & Photonics Reviews, Wiley-VCH, 2021-04-12) [Article]
    Digital inline holography is an amazingly simple and effective approach for three-dimensional imaging, to which particle tracking velocimetry is of particular interest. Conventional digital holographic particle tracking velocimetry techniques are computationally separated in particle and flow reconstruction, plus the expensive computations. Usually, the particle volumes are recovered firstly, from which fluid flows are computed. Without iterative reconstructions, This sequential spacetime process lacks accuracy. This paper presents a joint optimization framework for digital holographic particle tracking velocimetry: particle volumes and fluid flows are reconstructed jointly in a higher space-time dimension, enabling faster convergence and better reconstruction quality of both fluid flow and particle volumes within a few minutes on modern GPUs. Synthetic and experimental results are presented to show the efficiency of the proposed technique.
  • Seagrass (Halophila stipulacea) invasion enhances carbon sequestration in the Mediterranean Sea.

    Wesselmann, Marlene; Geraldi, Nathan; Duarte, Carlos M.; Garcia-Orellana, Jordi; Diaz Rua, Ruben; Arias-Ortiz, Ariane; Hendriks, Iris E; Apostolaki, Eugenia T; Marbà, Núria (Global change biology, Wiley, 2021-04-12) [Article]
    The introduction and establishment of exotic species often result in significant changes in recipient communities and their associated ecosystem services. However, usually the magnitude and direction of the changes are difficult to quantify because there is no pre-introduction data. Specifically, little is known about the effect of marine exotic macrophytes on organic carbon sequestration and storage. Here, we combine dating sediment cores (210Pb) with sediment eDNA fingerprinting to reconstruct the chronology of pre- and post-arrival of the Red Sea seagrass Halophila stipulacea spreading into the Eastern Mediterranean native seagrass meadows. We then compare sediment organic carbon storage and burial rates before and after the arrival of H. stipulacea and between exotic (H. stipulacea) and native (C. nodosa and P. oceanica) meadows since the time of arrival following a Before-After-Control-Impact (BACI) approach. This analysis revealed that H. stipulacea arrived at the areas of study in Limassol (Cyprus) and West Crete (Greece) in the 1930s and 1970s, respectively. Average sediment organic carbon after the arrival of H. stipulacea to the sites increased in the exotic meadows twofold, from 8.4 ± 2.5 g Corg m−2 year−1 to 14.7 ± 3.6 g Corg m−2 year−1, and, since then, burial rates in the exotic seagrass meadows were higher than in native ones of Cymodocea nodosa and Posidonia oceanica. Carbon isotopic data indicated a 50% increase of the seagrass contribution to the total sediment Corg pool since the arrival of H. stipulacea. Our results demonstrate that the invasion of H. stipulacea may play an important role in maintaining the blue carbon sink capacity in the future warmer Mediterranean Sea, by developing new carbon sinks in bare sediments and colonizing areas previously occupied by the colder thermal affinity P. oceanica.
  • Investigation of InGaN-based red/green micro-light-emitting diodes

    Zhuang, Zhe; Iida, Daisuke; Ohkawa, Kazuhiro (Optics Letters, The Optical Society, 2021-04-12) [Article]
    We investigated the performance of InGaN-based red/green micro-light-emitting diodes (µLEDs) ranging from 98 × 98 µm2 to 17 × 17 µm. The average forward voltage at 10 A/cm2 was independent of the dimension of µLEDs. Red µLEDs exhibited a larger blueshift of the peak wavelength (∼35 nm) and broader full-width at half maximum (≥50 nm) at 2−50 A/cm2 compared to green µLEDs. We demonstrated that 47 × 47 µm2 red µLEDs had an on-wafer external quantum efficiency of 0.36% at the peak wavelength of 626 nm, close to the red primary color defined in the recommendation 2020 standard.
  • Combined effects of hydrometeorological hazards and urbanisation on dengue risk in Brazil: a spatiotemporal modelling study.

    Lowe, Rachel; Lee, Sophie A; O'Reilly, Kathleen M; Brady, Oliver J; Bastos, Leonardo; Carrasco-Escobar, Gabriel; de Castro Catão, Rafael; Colón-González, Felipe J; Barcellos, Christovam; Carvalho, Marilia Sá; Blangiardo, Marta; Rue, Haavard; Gasparrini, Antonio (The Lancet. Planetary health, Elsevier BV, 2021-04-11) [Article]
    Temperature and rainfall patterns are known to influence seasonal patterns of dengue transmission. However, the effect of severe drought and extremely wet conditions on the timing and intensity of dengue epidemics is poorly understood. In this study, we aimed to quantify the non-linear and delayed effects of extreme hydrometeorological hazards on dengue risk by level of urbanisation in Brazil using a spatiotemporal model. We combined distributed lag non-linear models with a spatiotemporal Bayesian hierarchical model framework to determine the exposure-lag-response association between the relative risk (RR) of dengue and a drought severity index. We fit the model to monthly dengue case data for the 558 microregions of Brazil between January, 2001, and January, 2019, accounting for unobserved confounding factors, spatial autocorrelation, seasonality, and interannual variability. We assessed the variation in RR by level of urbanisation through an interaction between the drought severity index and urbanisation. We also assessed the effect of hydrometeorological hazards on dengue risk in areas with a high frequency of water supply shortages. The dataset included 12 895 293 dengue cases reported between 2001 and 2019 in Brazil. Overall, the risk of dengue increased between 0-3 months after extremely wet conditions (maximum RR at 1 month lag 1·56 [95% CI 1·41-1·73]) and 3-5 months after drought conditions (maximum RR at 4 months lag 1·43 [1·22-1·67]). Including a linear interaction between the drought severity index and level of urbanisation improved the model fit and showed the risk of dengue was higher in more rural areas than highly urbanised areas during extremely wet conditions (maximum RR 1·77 [1·32-2·37] at 0 months lag vs maximum RR 1·58 [1·39-1·81] at 2 months lag), but higher in highly urbanised areas than rural areas after extreme drought (maximum RR 1·60 [1·33-1·92] vs 1·15 [1·08-1·22], both at 4 months lag). We also found the dengue risk following extreme drought was higher in areas that had a higher frequency of water supply shortages. Wet conditions and extreme drought can increase the risk of dengue with different delays. The risk associated with extremely wet conditions was higher in more rural areas and the risk associated with extreme drought was exacerbated in highly urbanised areas, which have water shortages and intermittent water supply during droughts. These findings have implications for targeting mosquito control activities in poorly serviced urban areas, not only during the wet and warm season, but also during drought periods. Royal Society, Medical Research Council, Wellcome Trust, National Institutes of Health, Fundação Carlos Chagas Filho de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado do Rio de Janeiro, and Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico. For the Portuguese translation of the abstract see Supplementary Materials section.
  • Iso-anchorene is an endogenous metabolite that inhibits primary root growth in Arabidopsis.

    Jia, Kunpeng; Mi, Jianing; Ablazov, Abdugaffor; Ali, Shawkat; Yang, Yu; Balakrishna, Aparna; Berqdar, Lamis; Feng, Qitong; Blilou, Ikram; Al-Babili, Salim (The Plant journal : for cell and molecular biology, Wiley, 2021-04-10) [Article]
    Carotenoid-derived regulatory metabolites and hormones are generally known to arise through the oxidative cleavage of a single double bond in the carotenoid backbone, which yields mono-carbonyl products called apocarotenoids. However, the extended conjugated double bond system of these pigments predestines them also to repeated cleavage forming di-aldehyde products, diapocarotenoids, which have been less investigated due to their instability and low abundance. Recently, we reported on the short diapocarotenoid anchorene as an endogenous Arabidopsis metabolite and specific signaling molecule that promotes anchor root formation. In this work, we investigated the biological activity of a synthetic isomer of anchorene, iso-anchorene, which can derive from repeated carotenoid cleavage. We show that iso-anchorene is a growth inhibitor that specifically inhibits primary root growth by reducing cell division rates in the root apical meristem. Using auxin efflux transporter marker lines, we also show that the effect of iso-anchorene on primary root growth involves the modulation of auxin homeostasis. Moreover, by using liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (LC-MS) analysis, we demonstrate that iso-anchorene is a natural Arabidopsis metabolite. Chemical inhibition of carotenoid biosynthesis led to a significant decrease in the iso-anchorene level, indicating that it originates from this metabolic pathway. Taken together, our results reveal a further carotenoid-derived regulatory metabolite with a specific biological function that affects root growth, manifesting the biological importance of diapocarotenoids.
  • High-Efficient Electrocatalyst for Overall Water Splitting: Mesoporous CoS/MoS2 with Hetero-Interface

    Huang, Wenhuan; Li, Ximing; Yang, Xiufang; Zhang, Huabin; Wang, Fei; Zhang, Jian (Chemical Communications, Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC), 2021-04-09) [Article]
    A mesoporous CoS/MoS2 with abundant heterogeneous interfaces was facile synthesized from bimetallic hybrid zeolitic imidazolate framework, which showed excellent catalytic activity and reaction kinetics on both HER and OER in...
  • The Geological Potential of the Arabian Plate for CCS and CCUS - An Overview

    Vahrenkamp, Volker; Alafifi, Abdulkader Musa; Tasianas, Alexandros; Hoteit, Hussein (SSRN Electronic Journal, Elsevier BV, 2021-04-09) [Article]
    Given allowable carbon emissions for reaching climate targets, CCS and CCUS are without alternatives to simultaneously maintain a supply of sufficient energy for the world and preventing stranded subsurface assets for hydrocarbon producing countries. Permanent storage of carbon dioxide (CO2) in deep subsurface formations is acknowledged as a scalable and achievable technology to contribute to the ongoing efforts of limiting CO2 emissions and possibly lead to the use of stored CO2 for geothermal energy generation. The sequestration processes include entrapping CO2 in saline aquifers and hydrocarbon reservoirs in its mobile phase and in basalts as carbonate minerals. So, what are then the geological subsurface opportunities in Arabia for CO2 sequestration? A high level assessment has been conducted to identify geological formations suitable for storing and utilizing CO2 on a large scale. Over the Arabian peninsula four significantly different geological terrains are likely suitable for CCS & CCUS: (1) An Eastern section of stacked Mesozoic aquifers along the coast and inland of the Arabian Gulf, (2) rift basins with deep saline aquifers along the Red Sea, (3) Cenozoic volcanic rocks inland of the Red Sea coast, and Proterozoic ultramafic rocks in the Arabian Shield, and (4) a fringe of Cretaceous obducted marine crust (ophiolites) in Northeastern Oman and the UAE.
  • Real-time fouling monitoring and membrane autopsy analysis in forward osmosis for wastewater reuse.

    Im, Sung Ju; Fortunato, Luca; Jang, Am (Water research, Elsevier BV, 2021-04-08) [Article]
    Forward osmosis process in emerging technology which can applicable in wastewater reuse and desalination simultaneously. In this study, the development of fouling on the FO membrane surface was monitored in real-time. The investigation of fouling layer physical and chemical characteristics was assessed by performance evaluation and in-depth analysis of fouling layer. Non-invasive visual monitoring and in-depth autopsy, combined with the performance and image analyses provided a better understanding of fouling phenomena. The relative roughness of the fouling layer was correlated with water flux decrease while the fouling layer thickness decreased rapidly when fouling was stabilized. From 66-day operation using the primary wastewater as the feed, membrane fouling development was classified into 4 phases: virgin performance, initial deposition, stabilization and aggregation. With the growing fouling layer and with aggregation, the removal rate of organic matter was reduced from 99 to 70%. Conversely, the removal rate of inorganic matter was maintained at a level higher than 90%. The fractionation of physical and chemical extraction had the following characteristics: TPI>HPI>HPO and HPI>TPI>HPO respectively. Also, low molecular weight and building blocks like organic matter were observed with a high composition ratio of fouling layer. Through the correlation between the process performance, real-time monitoring of fouling layer formation and deep-layer fouling analysis, it was possible to identify the major membrane contaminants and propose process optimization guidelines.
  • Surface Topography, Bacterial Carrying Capacity, and the Prospect of Microbiome Manipulation in the Sea Anemone Coral Model Aiptasia

    Martins Da Costa, Ruben; Cárdenas, Anny; Loussert-Fonta, Céline; Toullec, Gaëlle; Meibom, Anders; Voolstra, Christian R. (Frontiers in Microbiology, Frontiers Media SA, 2021-04-08) [Article]
    Aiptasia is an emerging model organism to study cnidarian symbioses due to its taxonomic relatedness to other anthozoans such as stony corals and similarities of its microalgal and bacterial partners, complementing the existing Hydra (Hydrozoa) and Nematostella (Anthozoa) model systems. Despite the availability of studies characterizing the microbiomes of several natural Aiptasia populations and laboratory strains, knowledge on basic information, such as surface topography, bacterial carrying capacity, or the prospect of microbiome manipulation is lacking. Here we address these knowledge gaps. Our results show that the surface topographies of the model hydrozoan Hydra and anthozoans differ substantially, whereas the ultrastructural surface architecture of Aiptasia and stony corals is highly similar. Further, we determined a bacterial carrying capacity of ∼104 and ∼105 bacteria (i.e., colony forming units, CFUs) per polyp for aposymbiotic and symbiotic Aiptasia anemones, respectively, suggesting that the symbiotic status changes bacterial association/density. Microbiome transplants from Acropora humilis and Porites sp. to gnotobiotic Aiptasia showed that only a few foreign bacterial taxa were effective colonizers. Our results shed light on the putative difficulties of transplanting microbiomes between cnidarians in a manner that consistently changes microbial host association at large. At the same time, our study provides an avenue to identify bacterial taxa that exhibit broad ability to colonize different hosts as a starting point for cross-species microbiome manipulation. Our work is relevant in the context of microbial therapy (probiotics) and microbiome manipulation in corals and answers to the need of having cnidarian model systems to test the function of bacteria and their effect on holobiont biology. Taken together, we provide import.
  • A step towards the validation of bacteria biotic indices using DNA metabarcoding for benthic monitoring.

    Aylagas, Eva; Atalah, Javier; Sánchez-Jerez, Pablo; Pearman, John K.; Casado, Nuria; Asensi, Jorge; Toledo-Guedes, Kilian; Carvalho, Susana (Molecular ecology resources, Wiley, 2021-04-07) [Article]
    Environmental genomics is a promising field for monitoring biodiversity in a timely fashion. Efforts have increasingly been dedicated to the use of bacteria DNA derived data to develop biotic indices for benthic monitoring. However, a substantial debate exists about whether bacteria-derived data using DNA metabarcoding should follow, for example, a taxonomy-based or a taxonomy-free approach to marine bioassessments. Here, we show case the value of DNA-based monitoring using the impact of fish farming as an example of anthropogenic disturbances in coastal areas and compare the performance of taxonomy-based and taxonomy-free approaches in detecting environmental alterations. We analyzed samples collected near to the farm cages and along distance gradients from two aquaculture installations, and at control sites, to evaluate the effect of this activity on bacterial assemblages. Using the putative response of bacterial taxa to stress we calculated the taxonomy-based biotic index microgAMBI. Then, the distribution of individual Amplicon Sequence Variants (ASVs), as a function of a gradient in sediment acid volatile sulfides was used to derive a taxonomy-free bacterial biotic index, specific for this dataset, using a de novo approach based on quantile regression splines. Our results show that microgAMBI revealed a organically enriched environment along the gradient. However, the de novo biotic index outperformed microgAMBI by providing a higher discriminatory power in detecting changes in abiotic factors directly related to fish production, whilst allowing the identification of new ASVs bioindicators. The de novo strategy applied here represents a robust method to define new bioindicators in regions or habitats where no previous information about the response of bacteria to environmental stressors exists.
  • IsoDA: Isoform-Disease Association Prediction by Multiomics Data Fusion.

    Huang, Qiuyue; Wang, Jun; Zhang, Xiangliang; Guo, Maozu; Yu, Guoxian (Journal of computational biology : a journal of computational molecular cell biology, Mary Ann Liebert Inc, 2021-04-07) [Article]
    A gene can be spliced into different isoforms by alternative splicing, which contributes to the functional diversity of protein species. Computational prediction of gene-disease associations (GDAs) has been studied for decades. However, the process of identifying the isoform-disease associations (IDAs) at a large scale is rarely explored, which can decipher the pathology at a more granular level. The main bottleneck is the lack of IDAs in current databases and the multilevel omics data fusion. To bridge this gap, we propose a computational approach called Isoform-Disease Association prediction by multiomics data fusion (IsoDA) to predict IDAs. Based on the relationship between a gene and its spliced isoforms, IsoDA first introduces a dispatch and aggregation term to dispatch gene-disease associations to individual isoforms, and reversely aggregate these dispatched associations to their hosting genes. At the same time, it fuses the genome, transcriptome, and proteome data by joint matrix factorization to improve the prediction of IDAs. Experimental results show that IsoDA significantly outperforms the related state-of-the-art methods at both the gene level and isoform level. A case study further shows that IsoDA credibly identifies three isoforms spliced from apolipoprotein E, which have individual associations with Alzheimer's disease, and two isoforms spliced from vascular endothelial growth factor A, which have different associations with coronary heart disease. The codes of IsoDA are available at
  • Optical solitons supported by finite waveguide lattices with diffusive nonlocal nonlinearity

    Huang, Changming; Deng, Hanying; Dong, Liangwei; Shang, Ce; Zhao, Bo; Suo, Qiangbo; Zhou, Xiaofang (Chinese Physics B, IOP Publishing, 2021-04-07) [Article]
    We investigate the properties of fundamental, multi-peak, and multi-peaked twisted solitons in three types of finite waveguide lattices imprinted in photorefractive media with asymmetrical diffusion nonlinearity. Two opposite soliton self-bending signals are considered for different families of solitons. Power thresholdless fundamental and multi-peaked solitons are stable in the low power region. The existence domain of two-peaked twisted solitons can be changed by the soliton self-bending signals. When solitons tend to self-bend toward the waveguide lattice, stable two-peaked twisted solitons can be found in a larger region in the middle of their existence region. Three-peaked twisted solitons are stable in the lower (upper) cutoff region for a shallow (deep) lattice depth. Our results provide effective guidance for revealing the soliton characteristics supported by a finite waveguide lattice with diffusive nonlocal nonlinearity.
  • Synthesis of core-shell copper-graphite submicronic particles and carbon nano-onions by spark discharges in liquid hydrocarbons.

    Glad, X; Gorry, J; Cha, Min Suk; Hamdan, A (Scientific reports, Springer Nature, 2021-04-07) [Article]
    Spark discharge in hydrocarbon liquids is considered a promising method for the synthesis of various nanomaterials, including nanocomposites. In this study, copper-carbon particles were synthesized by generating spark discharges between two Cu electrodes immersed in heptane, cyclohexane, or toluene. The synthesized particles were characterized using scanning electron microscopy, high-resolution transmission electron microscopy, and selected area electron diffraction. Overall, two families of particles were observed: Cu particles (diameter
  • Early growth stage characterization and the biochemical responses for salinity stress in tomato

    Alam, Md Sarowar; Tester, Mark A.; Fiene, Gabriele; Mousa, Magdi Ali Ahmed (Plants, MDPI AG, 2021-04-07) [Article]
    Salinity is one of the most significant environmental stresses for sustainable crop production in major arable lands of the globe. Thus, we conducted experiments with 27 tomato genotypes to screen for salinity tolerance at seedling stage, which were treated with non-salinized (S1) control (18.2 mM NaCl) and salinized (S2) (200 mM NaCl) irrigation water. In all genotypes, the elevated salinity treatment contributed to a major depression in morphological and physiological character-istics; however, a smaller decrease was found in certain tolerant genotypes. Principal component analyses (PCA) and clustering with percentage reduction in growth parameters and different salt tolerance indices classified the tomato accessions into five key clusters. In particular, the tolerant genotypes were assembled into one cluster. The growth and tolerance indices PCA also showed the order of salt-tolerance of the studied genotypes, where Saniora was the most tolerant genotype and P.Guyu was the most susceptible genotype. To investigate the possible biochemical basis for salt stress tolerance, we further characterized six tomato genotypes with varying levels of salinity tolerance. A higher increase in proline content, and antioxidants activities were observed for the salt-tolerant genotypes in comparison to the susceptible genotypes. Salt-tolerant genotypes identified in this work herald a promising source in the tomato improvement program or for grafting as scions with improved salinity tolerance in tomato.
  • Simultaneous Detection and Mutation Surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 and co-infections of multiple respiratory viruses by Rapid field-deployable sequencing.

    Bi, Chongwei; Ramos Mandujano, Gerardo; Tian, Yeteng; Hala, Sharif; Xu, Jinna; Mfarrej, Sara; Esteban, Concepcion Rodriguez; Delicado, Estrella Nuñez; Alofi, Fadwa S; Khogeer, Asim; Hashem, Anwar M; Almontashiri, Naif A M; Pain, Arnab; Izpisua Belmonte, Juan Carlos; Li, Mo (Med (New York, N.Y.), Elsevier BV, 2021-04-06) [Article]
    BackgroundStrategies for monitoring the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection are crucial for combating the pandemic. Detection and mutation surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory viruses require separate and complex workflows that rely on highly-specialized facilities, personnel, and reagents. To date, no method can rapidly diagnose multiple viral infections and determine variants in a high-throughput manner.MethodsWe describe a method for multiplex isothermal amplification-based sequencing and real-time analysis of multiple viral genomes, termed NIRVANA. It can simultaneously detect SARS-CoV-2, influenza A, human adenovirus, and human coronavirus, and monitor mutations for up to 96 samples in real-time.FindingsNIRVANA showed high sensitivity and specificity for SARS-CoV-2 in 70 clinical samples with a detection limit of 20 viral RNA copies per μl of extracted nucleic acid. It also detected the influenza A co-infection in two samples. The variant analysis results of SARS-CoV-2 positive samples mirror the epidemiology of COVID-19. Additionally, NIRVANA could simultaneously detect SARS-CoV-2 and PMMoV (an omnipresent virus and water quality indicator) in municipal wastewater samples.ConclusionsNIRVANA provides high-confidence detection of both SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory viruses and mutation surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 on the fly. We expect it to offer a promising solution for rapid field-deployable detection and mutational surveillance of pandemic viruses.FundingM.L. is supported by KAUST Office of Sponsored Research (BAS/1/1080-01). This work is supported by KAUST Competitive Research Grant (URF/1/3412-01-01, M.L. and J.C.I.B.) and Universidad Catolica San Antonio de Murcia (J.C.I.B.). A.M.H. is supported by Saudi Ministry of Education (project 436).

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