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  1. Abstract

    Cardenolides are steroidal metabolites in Digitalis lanata with potent cardioactive effects on animals. In plants, cardenolides are likely involved in various stress responses. However, the molecular mechanism of cardenolide increase during stresses is mostly unknown. Additionally, cardenolides are proposed to arise from cholesterol, but indirect results show that phytosterols may also be substrates for cardenolide biosynthesis. Here, we show that cardenolides increased after methyl jasmonate (MJ), sorbitol, potassium chloride (KCl) and salicylic acid analog [2,1,3-benzothiadiazole (BTH)] treatments. However, the expression of three known genes for cardenolide biosynthesis did not correlate well with these increases. Specifically, the expression of progesterone-5β-reductases (P5βR and P5βR2) did not correlate with the cardenolide increase. The expression of 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (3βHSD) correlated with changes in cardenolide levels only during the BTH treatment. Mining the D. lanata transcriptome identified genes involved in cholesterol and phytosterol biosynthesis: C24 sterol sidechain reductase 1 (SSR1), C4 sterol methyl oxidase 1, and 3 (SMO1 and SMO3). Surprisingly, the expression of all three genes correlated well with the cardenolide increase after the BTH treatment. Phylogenetic analysis showed that SSR1 is likely involved in both cholesterol and phytosterol biosynthesis. In addition, SMO1 is likely specific to phytosterol biosynthesis, and SMO3 is specificmore »to cholesterol biosynthesis. These results suggest that stress-induced increase of cardenolides in foxglove may correlate with cholesterol and phytosterol biosynthesis. In summary, this work shows that cardenolides are important for stress responses in D. lanata and reveals a potential link between phytosterol and cardenolide biosynthesis.

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  2. Printed low-density materials form microrobots capable of high-speed motion, force output, and self-sensing feedback.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 17, 2023
  3. WebAssembly, an emerging bytecode format, which is initially developed for partially replacing JavaScript and speeding up browser applications, has been extended to the server-side due to its speed and security promise. It has been considered as a promising alternative to the widely deployed container technique for isolating lightweight applications. To run WebAssmebly from the server-side, aside from the NodeJS runtime, several WebAssembly native runtimes have been proposed. We characterize majorWebAssembly runtimes through extensive applications and metrics. Our results show that different runtimes fit different application scenarios. Based on that, a framework for reducing the startup latency of WebAssembly service while keeping maximum performance is provided. To identify the root causes of the performance gap, the analysis of emerging Cranelift compiler against LLVM in detail is reported. In addition, this paper gives revealing suggestions and architectural proposals for designing an efficient WebAssembly runtime. Our work provides insights on both WebAssembly runtime enhancement and WebAssemblybased cloud service exploitation.
  4. Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 1, 2023
  5. Abstract Quantum many-body systems away from equilibrium host a rich variety of exotic phenomena that are forbidden by equilibrium thermodynamics. A prominent example is that of discrete time crystals 1–8 , in which time-translational symmetry is spontaneously broken in periodically driven systems. Pioneering experiments have observed signatures of time crystalline phases with trapped ions 9,10 , solid-state spin systems 11–15 , ultracold atoms 16,17 and superconducting qubits 18–20 . Here we report the observation of a distinct type of non-equilibrium state of matter, Floquet symmetry-protected topological phases, which are implemented through digital quantum simulation with an array of programmable superconducting qubits. We observe robust long-lived temporal correlations and subharmonic temporal response for the edge spins over up to 40 driving cycles using a circuit of depth exceeding 240 and acting on 26 qubits. We demonstrate that the subharmonic response is independent of the initial state, and experimentally map out a phase boundary between the Floquet symmetry-protected topological and thermal phases. Our results establish a versatile digital simulation approach to exploring exotic non-equilibrium phases of matter with current noisy intermediate-scale quantum processors 21 .
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 21, 2023