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PLoS One ; 17(7): e0271285, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1928298


OBJECTIVE: When facing major emergency public accidents, men and women may react differently. Our research aimed to assess the influence of gender difference on social support, information preference, biological rhythm, psychological distress, and the possible interaction among these factors during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: In this cross-sectional study, 3,237 respondents aged 12 years and older finished the online survey. Levels of social support, information preference, biological rhythm, and psychological distress were assessed using validated scales. A path analysis was conducted to explore possible associations among these variables. RESULTS: The path analysis indicated that women with high levels of social support had a lower possibility of biological rhythm disorders and lower levels of somatization symptoms of psychological distress during the COVID-19 pandemic. The influence of social support on somatization symptoms was exerted via biological rhythm. Women tended to believe both negative and positive information, while men preferred more extreme information. CONCLUSION: Our results highlighted gender difference in study variables during the COVID-19 pandemic and the importance of social support in alleviating psychological distress and biological rhythm disorders. Moreover, we confirmed that information preference differed significantly by somatization symptoms of psychological distress, suggesting extra efforts to provide more individualized epidemic information. Longitudinal research is required to further explore casual inferences.

COVID-19 , Psychological Distress , COVID-19/epidemiology , China/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Pandemics , Periodicity , SARS-CoV-2
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-332739


Reliable and contactless measurements of vital signs, such as respiration and heart rate, are still an unmet need in clinical and home settings. Mm-wave radar and video-based technologies are promising, but currently, the signal processing-based vital sign extraction methods are prone to body motion disruptions or illumination variations in the surrounding environment. Here we propose an image segmentation-based method to extract vital signs from the recorded video and mm-wave radar signals. The proposed method analyses time-frequency spectrograms obtained from Short-Time Fourier Transform rather than individual time-domain signals. This leads to much-improved robustness and accuracy of the heart rate and respiration rate extraction over existing methods. The experiments were conducted under no- and post-exercise conditions and repeated on multiple individuals. The results are evaluated by using four metrics against the gold standard contact-based measurements. Significant improvements are observed in terms of precision, accuracy, and stability. We believe that the proposed estimation method will help address the need for the increasingly popular remote cardiovascular sensing and diagnosing posed by Covid-19.

J Phys Chem Lett ; 12(23): 5494-5502, 2021 Jun 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1258538


SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2 bind to the human ACE2 receptor in practically identical conformations, although several residues of the receptor-binding domain (RBD) differ between them. Herein, we have used molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, machine learning (ML), and free-energy perturbation (FEP) calculations to elucidate the differences in binding by the two viruses. Although only subtle differences were observed from the initial MD simulations of the two RBD-ACE2 complexes, ML identified the individual residues with the most distinctive ACE2 interactions, many of which have been highlighted in previous experimental studies. FEP calculations quantified the corresponding differences in binding free energies to ACE2, and examination of MD trajectories provided structural explanations for these differences. Lastly, the energetics of emerging SARS-CoV-2 mutations were studied, showing that the affinity of the RBD for ACE2 is increased by N501Y and E484K mutations but is slightly decreased by K417N.

Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Machine Learning , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Binding Sites , Humans , Models, Molecular , Molecular Dynamics Simulation