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This article uses the concept of quasi-vertical integration to attempt to explain the interfirm relationships of parts sourcing that allowed Hyundai Motor to attain its high level of growth. This involved the integration of Hyundai Motor Group’s affiliated and nonaffiliated parts suppliers across the boundaries of the firm. This study shows that the formation, systematization, and expansion of Hyundai Motor’s quasi-vertical integration did not develop under a consistent long-term plan, but rather evolved in response to environmental changes. Hyundai Motor’s quasi-vertically integrated supply chain formed in the 1980s with the creation of a captive subcontracting system backed by the government. As the modularization of production and quality management began to gain traction in the 2000s, the system became more refined and spread overseas as Hyundai Motors expanded its global production. The system has several theoretical implications. First, Hyundai Motor’s inter-firm relationships with vertical modularization go beyond conventional modularization that presupposes a horizontal relationship. Second, as an extension of MacDuffie (2013)’s concept of quasi-vertical integration that applies within the boundaries of Korea’s chaebol, this includes not only affiliates but also non-affiliates with no equity relationships across the boundaries of the firm. Finally, Hyundai Motor’s quasi-vertically integrated supply network differs from a Japanese keiretsu, a close network of mutual obligations between companies. Unlike in the Japanese automobile industry, where modular production in the 2000s weakened the keiretsu system, Hyundai Motor’s system became even more quasi-vertically consolidated through the advent of modular production.
Background: Obesity is a risk factor for diabetes and several cardiovascular diseases. This study was to investigate the trends inthe prevalence, awareness, and management status of obesity among the Korean population for recent 13 years. Methods: The prevalence, subjective awareness, and management of obesity were investigated in adults aged ≥19 years by usingthe data from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (KNHANES) 1998 to 2011. Results: The number of participants was 8,117, 5,826, 5,500, 3,025, 6,756, 7,506, 6,255, and 6,155 in the KNHANES in years 1998,2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011, respectively. The prevalence of obesity was 26.9%, 29.2%, 32.9%, 32.5%, 32.0%, 32.6%,32.0%, and 32.0% in 1998, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011, respectively, while the overall prevalence of obesity and abdominalobesity increased by 1.19-fold and 1.24-fold respectively in 2011 compared against 2001. In general, a gradual increase inthe prevalence of severe obesity has been observed as years go by. Furthermore, trends of improvements in obesity awareness andmanagement rates were visible over the period of surveys. Conclusion: Although the management status of obesity has improved during the recent years, more effective strategy to controlobesity is needed.
Background: Increased cardiovascular events, which is the leading cause of death in type 2 diabetic patients, are mainly caused by accelerated atherosclerosis. Adiponectin has been suggested as a risk factor for cardiovascular diseases in cross-sectional studies. However, little is known about the impact of adiponectin on the progression of carotid atherosclerosis in type 2 diabetic patients. This study was conducted to evaluate the impact of early adiponectin levels on the progression of carotid atherosclerosis. Methods: From March 2009, 150 patients with type 2 diabetes were consecutively enrolled in our affiliated outpatient clinic. Anthropometric and biochemical data, including adiponectin levels, were measured in each participant. We measured the carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT) at baseline and at 1-year follow-up (n = 111). Then, we prospectively studied the relationship between the serum adiponectin levels and the progression of CIMT for 1 year. Results: Adiponectin levels negatively correlated with CIMT (r = -0.219, P = 0.015). Moreover, mean progression of CIMT was 0.016 ± 0.040 mm. However, there was no correlation between adiponectin levels and the progression of CIMT within 1-year follow-up period (r = -0.156, P = 0.080). Age (β = 0.556, P = 0.004), LDL cholesterol (β = 0.276, P = 0.042), and A1C (β = 0.309, P =0.038) were found to be independent risk factors for CIMT. However, A1C (β = 0.311, P = 0.042) was found to be the only independent risk factor for the progression of CIMT. Conclusion: In our study, adiponectin levels were negatively associated with CIMT. However, it did not affect the progression of CIMT at 1-year follow-up. Overall glycemic control is the most important factor in the progression of CIMT in patients with type 2diabetes.
Purpose: The aim of this study was to examine the effects of all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) on diabetic nephropathy. Materials and Methods: We measured amounts of urinary albumin excretion (UAE) after administrating ATRA to Otsuka Long-Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF) rats. In order to understand the mechanism of action for ATRA, we administrated ATRA to examineits inhibitory action on the production of transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1), protein kinase C (PKC), and reactive oxidative stress (ROS) in cultured rat mesangial cells (RMCs). Results: After 16 weeks of treatment, UAE was lower in the ATRA-treated OLETF rats than in the non-treated OLETF rats (0.07± 0.03 mg/mgCr vs. 0.17±0.15 mg/mgCr, p<0.01). After incubation of RMCs in media containing 30 or 5 mM of glucose, treatment with ATRA showed time- and dose-dependent decreases in TGF-β1 levels and ROS. Moreover, ATRA treatment showed a dose-dependent decrease in PKC expression. Conclusion: ATRA treatment suppressed UAE and TGF-β1 synthesis, which was mediated by significant reductions in PKC activity and ROS production. Our results suggest that ATRA has a potential therapeutic role for diabetic nephropathy.