Sample records for ancient mammalian krab

  1. Ancient Transposable Elements Transformed the Uterine Regulatory Landscape and Transcriptome during the Evolution of Mammalian Pregnancy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vincent J. Lynch


    Full Text Available A major challenge in biology is determining how evolutionarily novel characters originate; however, mechanistic explanations for the origin of new characters are almost completely unknown. The evolution of pregnancy is an excellent system in which to study the origin of novelties because mammals preserve stages in the transition from egg laying to live birth. To determine the molecular bases of this transition, we characterized the pregnant/gravid uterine transcriptome from tetrapods to trace the evolutionary history of uterine gene expression. We show that thousands of genes evolved endometrial expression during the origins of mammalian pregnancy, including genes that mediate maternal-fetal communication and immunotolerance. Furthermore, thousands of cis-regulatory elements that mediate decidualization and cell-type identity in decidualized stromal cells are derived from ancient mammalian transposable elements (TEs. Our results indicate that one of the defining mammalian novelties evolved from DNA sequences derived from ancient mammalian TEs co-opted into hormone-responsive regulatory elements distributed throughout the genome.

  2. Effects of global warming on ancient mammalian communities and their environments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larisa R G DeSantis

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Current global warming affects the composition and dynamics of mammalian communities and can increase extinction risk; however, long-term effects of warming on mammals are less understood. Dietary reconstructions inferred from stable isotopes of fossil herbivorous mammalian tooth enamel document environmental and climatic changes in ancient ecosystems, including C(3/C(4 transitions and relative seasonality. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here, we use stable carbon and oxygen isotopes preserved in fossil teeth to document the magnitude of mammalian dietary shifts and ancient floral change during geologically documented glacial and interglacial periods during the Pliocene (approximately 1.9 million years ago and Pleistocene (approximately 1.3 million years ago in Florida. Stable isotope data demonstrate increased aridity, increased C(4 grass consumption, inter-faunal dietary partitioning, increased isotopic niche breadth of mixed feeders, niche partitioning of phylogenetically similar taxa, and differences in relative seasonality with warming. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Our data show that global warming resulted in dramatic vegetation and dietary changes even at lower latitudes (approximately 28 degrees N. Our results also question the use of models that predict the long term decline and extinction of species based on the assumption that niches are conserved over time. These findings have immediate relevance to clarifying possible biotic responses to current global warming in modern ecosystems.

  3. The Transcriptional Repressive Activity of KRAB Zinc Finger Proteins Does Not Correlate with Their Ability to Recruit TRIM28 (United States)

    Murphy, Kristin E.; Shylo, Natalia A.; Alexander, Katherine A.; Churchill, Angela J.; Copperman, Cecilia; García-García, María J.


    KRAB domain Zinc finger proteins are one of the most abundant families of transcriptional regulators in higher vertebrates. The prevailing view is that KRAB domain proteins function as potent transcriptional repressors by recruiting TRIM28 and promoting heterochromatin spreading. However, the extent to which all KRAB domain proteins are TRIM28-dependent transcriptional repressors is currently unclear. Our studies on mouse ZFP568 revealed that TRIM28 recruitment by KRAB domain proteins is not sufficient to warrant transcriptional repressive activity. By using luciferase reporter assays and yeast two-hybrid experiments, we tested the ability of ZFP568 and other mouse KRAB domain proteins to repress transcription and bind TRIM28. We found that some mouse KRAB domain proteins are poor transcriptional repressors despite their ability to recruit TRIM28, while others showed strong KRAB-dependent transcriptional repression, but no TRIM28 binding. Together, our results show that the transcriptional repressive activity of KRAB-ZNF proteins does not correlate with their ability to recruit TRIM28, and provide evidence that KRAB domains can regulate transcription in a TRIM28-independent fashion. Our findings challenge the current understanding of the molecular mechanisms used by KRAB domain proteins to control gene expression and highlight that a high percentage of KRAB domain proteins in the mouse genome differ from the consensus KRAB sequence at amino acid residues that are critical for TRIM28 binding and/or repressive activity. PMID:27658112

  4. Ancient exaptation of a CORE-SINE retroposon into a highly conserved mammalian neuronal enhancer of the proopiomelanocortin gene.

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    Andrea M Santangelo


    Full Text Available The proopiomelanocortin gene (POMC is expressed in the pituitary gland and the ventral hypothalamus of all jawed vertebrates, producing several bioactive peptides that function as peripheral hormones or central neuropeptides, respectively. We have recently determined that mouse and human POMC expression in the hypothalamus is conferred by the action of two 5' distal and unrelated enhancers, nPE1 and nPE2. To investigate the evolutionary origin of the neuronal enhancer nPE2, we searched available vertebrate genome databases and determined that nPE2 is a highly conserved element in placentals, marsupials, and monotremes, whereas it is absent in nonmammalian vertebrates. Following an in silico paleogenomic strategy based on genome-wide searches for paralog sequences, we discovered that opossum and wallaby nPE2 sequences are highly similar to members of the superfamily of CORE-short interspersed nucleotide element (SINE retroposons, in particular to MAR1 retroposons that are widely present in marsupial genomes. Thus, the neuronal enhancer nPE2 originated from the exaptation of a CORE-SINE retroposon in the lineage leading to mammals and remained under purifying selection in all mammalian orders for the last 170 million years. Expression studies performed in transgenic mice showed that two nonadjacent nPE2 subregions are essential to drive reporter gene expression into POMC hypothalamic neurons, providing the first functional example of an exapted enhancer derived from an ancient CORE-SINE retroposon. In addition, we found that this CORE-SINE family of retroposons is likely to still be active in American and Australian marsupial genomes and that several highly conserved exonic, intronic and intergenic sequences in the human genome originated from the exaptation of CORE-SINE retroposons. Together, our results provide clear evidence of the functional novelties that transposed elements contributed to their host genomes throughout evolution.

  5. A pair of mouse KRAB zinc finger proteins modulates multiple indicators of female reproduction. (United States)

    Krebs, Christopher J; Robins, Diane M


    Krüppel-associated box-zinc finger proteins (KRAB-ZFPs) are the largest class of transcriptional regulators in mammals, yet few have been assigned biological roles. Cloning the genes underlying the regulator of sex-limitation (rsl) phenotype, in which the normally male-specific sex-limited protein (SLP) is expressed in female mice, identified two KRAB-ZFPs, Rsl1 and Rsl2, as influencing sexually dimorphic liver gene expression. Combined absence of both repressors in rsl mice leads to increased expression in female liver of major urinary proteins (MUPs) and certain enzymes of steroid metabolism, as well as SLP. We hypothesized that this altered gene expression might affect reproductive physiology in rsl females. Urinary MUP (uMUP) concentration varied with the estrous cycle in both wt and rsl females but was consistently higher in rsl urine. A behavioral odor test revealed that wild-type (wt) males preferred rsl to wt females, possibly due to elevated uMUPs providing greater pheromone presentation. To ascribe activity to Rsl1, Rsl2, or both, the genes were individually expressed as liver-specific transgenes. RSL2 overexpression accentuated uMUP fluctuations across the estrous cycle, whereas RSL1 overexpression did not. In addition, puberty onset, as indicated by vaginal opening (VO), occurred 2 days earlier in rsl females, and excess RSL2, but not RSL1, restored VO timing to wt. Hence, transcriptional repression by RSL in liver modifies female mouse reproduction via targets that likely impact both hormonal and pheromonal cues. The large and rapidly diversifying KRAB-ZFP family may modulate biological processes, including reproduction, to confer individual differences that may isolate populations and ultimately lead to speciation.

  6. Transcripts from a novel human KRAB zinc finger gene contain spliced Alu and endogenous retroviral segments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baban, S.; Freeman, J.D.; Mager, D.L. [Univ. of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia (Canada)


    During the course of an investigation into the potential effects of endogenous retroviruses on adjacent gene expression, we isolated two cDNA clones containing a small sequence segment belonging to the human endogenous retrovirus family, HERV-H. Characterization of the clones revealed that they represent transcripts from a novel KRAB zinc finger gene termed ZNF177. The two cDNA clones differ at their 5{prime} termini and in the presence of a 559-bp internal exon. The clone containing this internal exon has six imperfect zinc finger motifs followed by seven perfect copies of the C{sub 2}H{sub 2} type but has a frame shift between the KRAB domain and the downstream zinc finger region. The smaller clone lacks the six imperfect motifs and has an intact ORF. The 5{prime} putative untranslated regions of both cDNAs contain an 86-bp HERV-H env segment and a segment of an Alu repeat, both in the antisense orientation, that have been incorporated by splicing. RT-PCR experiments show evidence of alternative splicing but the majority of transcripts appear to contain the Alu and env segments. Genomic PCR and hybridization experiments suggest that a partial HERV-H element is integrated within the ZNF177 locus, which Southern analysis has shown to be a single-copy gene. Northern and RT-PCR analyses suggest that ZNF177 is transcribed at a low level in a variety of cell types. 41 refs., 8 figs.

  7. Genome-wide analysis of KAP1 binding suggests autoregulation of KRAB-ZNFs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henriette O'Geen


    Full Text Available We performed a genome-scale chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP-chip comparison of two modifications (trimethylation of lysine 9 [H3me3K9] and trimethylation of lysine 27 [H3me3K27] of histone H3 in Ntera2 testicular carcinoma cells and in three different anatomical sources of primary human fibroblasts. We found that in each of the cell types the two modifications were differentially enriched at the promoters of the two largest classes of transcription factors. Specifically, zinc finger (ZNF genes were bound by H3me3K9 and homeobox genes were bound by H3me3K27. We have previously shown that the Polycomb repressive complex 2 is responsible for mediating trimethylation of lysine 27 of histone H3 in human cancer cells. In contrast, there is little overlap between H3me3K9 targets and components of the Polycomb repressive complex 2, suggesting that a different histone methyltransferase is responsible for the H3me3K9 modification. Previous studies have shown that SETDB1 can trimethylate H3 on lysine 9, using in vitro or artificial tethering assays. SETDB1 is thought to be recruited to chromatin by complexes containing the KAP1 corepressor. To determine if a KAP1-containing complex mediates trimethylation of the identified H3me3K9 targets, we performed ChIP-chip assays and identified KAP1 target genes using human 5-kb promoter arrays. We found that a large number of genes of ZNF transcription factors were bound by both KAP1 and H3me3K9 in normal and cancer cells. To expand our studies of KAP1, we next performed a complete genomic analysis of KAP1 binding using a 38-array tiling set, identifying ~7,000 KAP1 binding sites. The identified KAP1 targets were highly enriched for C2H2 ZNFs, especially those containing Krüppel-associated box (KRAB domains. Interestingly, although most KAP1 binding sites were within core promoter regions, the binding sites near ZNF genes were greatly enriched within transcribed regions of the target genes. Because KAP1 is

  8. A Comprehensive Catalog of Human KRAB-associated Zinc Finger Genes: Insights into the Evolutionary History of a Large Family of Transcriptional Repressors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Huntley, S; Baggott, D M; Hamilton, A T; Tran-Gyamfi, M; Yang, S; Kim, J; Gordon, L; Branscomb, E; Stubbs, L


    Krueppel-type zinc finger (ZNF) motifs are prevalent components of transcription factor proteins in all eukaryotic species. In mammals, most ZNF proteins comprise a single class of transcriptional repressors in which a chromatin interaction domain, called the Krueppel-associated box (KRAB) is attached to a tandem array of DNA-binding zinc-finger motifs. KRAB-ZNF loci are specific to tetrapod vertebrates, but have expanded dramatically in numbers through repeated rounds of segmental duplication to create a gene family with hundreds of members in mammals. To define the full repertoire of human KRAB-ZNF proteins, we searched the human genome for key motifs and used them to construct and manually curate gene models. The resulting KRAB-ZNF gene catalog includes 326 known genes, 243 of which were structurally corrected by manual annotation, and 97 novel KRAB-ZNF genes; this single family therefore comprises 20% of all predicted human transcription factor genes. Many of the genes are alternatively spliced, yielding a total of 743 distinct predicted proteins. Although many human KRAB-ZNF genes are conserved in mammals, at least 136 and potentially more than 200 genes of this type are primate-specific including many recent segmental duplicates. KRAB-ZNF genes are active in a wide variety of human tissues suggesting roles in many key biological processes, but most member genes remain completely uncharacterized. Because of their sheer numbers, wide-ranging tissue-specific expression patterns, and remarkable evolutionary divergence we predict that KRAB-ZNF transcription factors have played critical roles in crafting many aspects of human biology, including both deeply conserved and primate-specific traits.

  9. Enrichment of brain-related genes on the mammalian X chromosome is ancient and predates the divergence of synapsid and sauropsid lineages. (United States)

    Kemkemer, Claus; Kohn, Matthias; Kehrer-Sawatzki, Hildegard; Fundele, Reinald H; Hameister, Horst


    Previous studies have revealed an enrichment of reproduction- and brain-related genes on the human X chromosome. In the present study, we investigated the evolutionary history that underlies this functional specialization. To do so, we analyzed the orthologous building blocks of the mammalian X chromosome in the chicken genome. We used Affymetrix chicken genome microarrays to determine tissue-selective gene expression in several tissues of the chicken, including testis and brain. Subsequently, chromosomal distribution of genes with tissue-selective expression was determined. These analyzes provided several new findings. Firstly, they showed that chicken chromosomes orthologous to the mammalian X chromosome exhibited an increased concentration of genes expressed selectively in brain. More specifically, the highest concentration of brain-selectively expressed genes was found on chicken chromosome GGA12, which shows orthology to the X chromosomal regions with the highest enrichment of non-syndromic X-linked mental retardation (MRX) genes. Secondly, and in contrast to the first finding, no enrichment of testis-selective genes could be detected on these chicken chromosomes. These findings indicate that the accumulation of brain-related genes on the prospective mammalian X chromosome antedates the divergence of sauropsid and synapsid lineages 315 million years ago, whereas the accumulation of testis-related genes on the mammalian X chromosome is more recent and due to adaptational changes.

  10. Evolution of KRAB-containing zinc finger proteins and their roles in species evolution%KRAB型锌指蛋白的进化及在物种演化中的功能

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    王进龙; 王建; 田春艳


    C2H2型锌指蛋白家族是目前发现的哺乳动物中最大的转录/转录调控因子家族,由一小群古老的含有真核锌指结构的转录因子经过多次基因复制和功能分化演化而来。KRAB型锌指蛋白(KRAB-containing zinc finger proteins, KRAB-ZFPs)作为C2H2型锌指蛋白家族中最大的亚家族,最早出现在四足脊椎动物,并随物种的进化数量快速增长,在人类中占据C2H2型锌指蛋白的60%左右。在物种演化中,进化压力主要改变KRAB-ZFPs的DNA结合能力,而KRAB-ZFPs介导的转录抑制能力则稳定存在。同时,多种KRAB-ZFPs能够与KRAB相关蛋白1(KRAB-associated protein 1, KAP1)协同作用沉默哺乳动物中反转录元件的活性,并与之协同进化,严格限制反转录原件的跳跃能力。本文综述了 KRAB-ZFPs 的数量倍增、锌指结构的灵活多变、KRAB-ZFPs/KAP1的转录抑制能力和反转录元件的跳跃性在促进哺乳动物调控网络的差异、基因组稳定性的变化和物种进化中的作用,旨在进一步揭示KRAB-ZFPs在推动物种稳定演化中的特点和功能。%The C2H2 zinc finger protein family, one of the largest families of transcription factor/transcriptional regulator in mammal, arose from a small ancestral group of eukaryotic zinc finger transcription factors through many repeated gene duplications accompanied by functional divergence. As the biggest subfamily of C2H2 zinc finger protein family, Kruppel-associated box-containing zinc finger proteins (KRAB-ZFPs) appeared at the period oftetrapod, expand rapidly along with species evolution, and take about 60%of the total C2H2 zinc finger proteins in human. During species evolution, the DNA binding ability of KRAB-ZFPs is changed while the KRAB-ZFPs-mediate transcriptional repression ability maintains stable under the evolution pressure. Moreover, multiple KRAB-ZFPs function synergistically with KAP1 on transcriptional silencing of retroelements, and

  11. Ancient DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Willerslev, Eske; Cooper, Alan


    ancient DNA, palaeontology, palaeoecology, archaeology, population genetics, DNA damage and repair......ancient DNA, palaeontology, palaeoecology, archaeology, population genetics, DNA damage and repair...

  12. Ancient Egypt. (United States)

    Evers, Virginia

    This four-week fourth grade social studies unit dealing with religious dimensions in ancient Egyptian culture was developed by the Public Education Religion Studies Center at Wright State University. It seeks to help students understand ancient Egypt by looking at the people, the culture, and the people's world view. The unit begins with outlines…

  13. Ancient genomics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Der Sarkissian, Clio; Allentoft, Morten Erik; Avila Arcos, Maria del Carmen


    by increasing the number of sequence reads to billions effectively means that contamination issues that have haunted aDNA research for decades, particularly in human studies, can now be efficiently and confidently quantified. At present, whole genomes have been sequenced from ancient anatomically modern humans......, archaic hominins, ancient pathogens and megafaunal species. Those have revealed important functional and phenotypic information, as well as unexpected adaptation, migration and admixture patterns. As such, the field of aDNA has entered the new era of genomics and has provided valuable information when...

  14. Myocardial ischemic preconditioning upregulated protein 1(Mipu1):zinc finger protein 667 - a multifunctional KRAB/C{sub 2}H{sub 2} zinc finger protein

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    Han, D.; Zhang, C. [Institute of Cardiovascular Disease, Key Lab for Arteriosclerology of Hunan Province, Post-doctoral Mobile Stations for Basic Medicine, University of South China, Hengyang City, Hunan Province (China); Fan, W.J. [Institute of Cardiovascular Disease, Key Lab for Arteriosclerology of Hunan Province, Post-doctoral Mobile Stations for Basic Medicine, University of South China, Hengyang City, Hunan Province (China); The Second Affiliated Hospital, University of South China, Hengyang City, Hunan Province (China); Pan, W.J.; Feng, D.M.; Qu, S.L.; Jiang, Z.S. [Institute of Cardiovascular Disease, Key Lab for Arteriosclerology of Hunan Province, Post-doctoral Mobile Stations for Basic Medicine, University of South China, Hengyang City, Hunan Province (China)


    Myocardial ischemic preconditioning upregulated protein 1 (Mipu1) is a newly discovered upregulated gene produced in rats during the myocardial ischemic preconditioning process. Mipu1 cDNA contains a 1824-base pair open reading frame and encodes a 608 amino acid protein with an N-terminal Krüppel-associated box (KRAB) domain and classical zinc finger C{sub 2}H{sub 2} motifs in the C-terminus. Mipu1 protein is located in the cell nucleus. Recent studies found that Mipu1 has a protective effect on the ischemia-reperfusion injury of heart, brain, and other organs. As a nuclear factor, Mipu1 may perform its protective function through directly transcribing and repressing the expression of proapoptotic genes to repress cell apoptosis. In addition, Mipu1 also plays an important role in regulating the gene expression of downstream inflammatory mediators by inhibiting the activation of activator protein-1 and serum response element.

  15. Ancient genomics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Der Sarkissian, Clio; Allentoft, Morten Erik; Avila Arcos, Maria del Carmen;


    , archaic hominins, ancient pathogens and megafaunal species. Those have revealed important functional and phenotypic information, as well as unexpected adaptation, migration and admixture patterns. As such, the field of aDNA has entered the new era of genomics and has provided valuable information when...

  16. Mammalian pheromones. (United States)

    Liberles, Stephen D


    Mammalian pheromones control a myriad of innate social behaviors and acutely regulate hormone levels. Responses to pheromones are highly robust, reproducible, and stereotyped and likely involve developmentally predetermined neural circuits. Here, I review several facets of pheromone transduction in mammals, including (a) chemosensory receptors and signaling components of the main olfactory epithelium and vomeronasal organ involved in pheromone detection; (b) pheromone-activated neural circuits subject to sex-specific and state-dependent modulation; and (c) the striking chemical diversity of mammalian pheromones, which range from small, volatile molecules and sulfated steroids to large families of proteins. Finally, I review (d) molecular mechanisms underlying various behavioral and endocrine responses, including modulation of puberty and estrous; control of reproduction, aggression, suckling, and parental behaviors; individual recognition; and distinguishing of own species from predators, competitors, and prey. Deconstruction of pheromone transduction mechanisms provides a critical foundation for understanding how odor response pathways generate instinctive behaviors.

  17. Ancient Egypt (United States)

    Swamy, Ashwin Balegar

    This thesis involves development of an interactive GIS (Geographic Information System) based application, which gives information about the ancient history of Egypt. The astonishing architecture, the strange burial rituals and their civilization were some of the intriguing questions that motivated me towards developing this application. The application is a historical timeline starting from 3100 BC, leading up to 664 BC, focusing on the evolution of the Egyptian dynasties. The tool holds information regarding some of the famous monuments which were constructed during that era and also about the civilizations that co-existed. It also provides details about the religions followed by their kings. It also includes the languages spoken during those periods. The tool is developed using JAVA, a programing language and MOJO (Map Objects Java Objects) a product of ESRI (Environmental Science Research Institute) to create map objects, to provide geographic information. JAVA Swing is used for designing the user interface. HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) pages are created to provide the user with more information related to the historic period. CSS (Cascade Style Sheets) and JAVA Scripts are used with HTML5 to achieve creative display of content. The tool is kept simple and easy for the user to interact with. The tool also includes pictures and videos for the user to get a feel of the historic period. The application is built to motivate people to know more about one of the prominent and ancient civilization of the Mediterranean world.

  18. Mammalian sleep (United States)

    Staunton, Hugh


    This review examines the biological background to the development of ideas on rapid eye movement sleep (REM sleep), so-called paradoxical sleep (PS), and its relation to dreaming. Aspects of the phenomenon which are discussed include physiological changes and their anatomical location, the effects of total and selective sleep deprivation in the human and animal, and REM sleep behavior disorder, the latter with its clinical manifestations in the human. Although dreaming also occurs in other sleep phases (non-REM or NREM sleep), in the human, there is a contingent relation between REM sleep and dreaming. Thus, REM is taken as a marker for dreaming and as REM is distributed ubiquitously throughout the mammalian class, it is suggested that other mammals also dream. It is suggested that the overall function of REM sleep/dreaming is more important than the content of the individual dream; its function is to place the dreamer protagonist/observer on the topographical world. This has importance for the developing infant who needs to develop a sense of self and separateness from the world which it requires to navigate and from which it is separated for long periods in sleep. Dreaming may also serve to maintain a sense of ‘I’ness or “self” in the adult, in whom a fragility of this faculty is revealed in neurological disorders.

  19. Ancient Astronomy in Armenia (United States)

    Parsamian, Elma S.


    The most important discovery, which enriched our knowledge of ancient astronomy in Armenia, was the complex of platforms for astronomical observations on the Small Hill of Metzamor, which may be called an ancient “observatory”. Investigations on that Hill show that the ancient inhabitants of the Armenian Highlands have left us not only pictures of celestial bodies, but a very ancient complex of platforms for observing the sky. Among the ancient monuments in Armenia there is a megalithic monument, probably, being connected with astronomy. 250km South-East of Yerevan there is a structure Zorats Kar (Karahunge) dating back to II millennium B.C. Vertical megaliths many of which are more than two meters high form stone rings resembling ancient stone monuments - henges in Great Britain and Brittany. Medieval observations of comets and novas by data in ancient Armenian manuscripts are found. In the collection of ancient Armenian manuscripts (Matenadaran) in Yerevan there are many manuscripts with information about observations of astronomical events as: solar and lunar eclipses, comets and novas, bolides and meteorites etc. in medieval Armenia.

  20. Ancient Marital Rites

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Clearly defined rites governing speech and actions dominated both the social and domestic activities of ancient Chinese people. Rites not only dominated the lives of men, but were also prominent in the lives of women.

  1. Ancient Chinese Architecture

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    CHINESE people have accu-mulated a great deal ofexperience in architecture,constantly improving building ma-terials and thus creating uniquebuilding styles.The history of ancient Chinesearchitechtural development can be

  2. Role of Notch signaling in the mammalian heart

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhou, X.L.; Liu, J.C. [Department of Cardiac Surgery, The First Affiliated Hospital, Nanchang University, Donghu District, Nanchang, Jiangxi (China)


    Notch signaling is an evolutionarily ancient, highly conserved pathway important for deciding cell fate, cellular development, differentiation, proliferation, apoptosis, adhesion, and epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition. Notch signaling is also critical in mammalian cardiogenesis, as mutations in this signaling pathway are linked to human congenital heart disease. Furthermore, Notch signaling can repair myocardial injury by promoting myocardial regeneration, protecting ischemic myocardium, inducing angiogenesis, and negatively regulating cardiac fibroblast-myofibroblast transformation. This review provides an update on the known roles of Notch signaling in the mammalian heart. The goal is to assist in developing strategies to influence Notch signaling and optimize myocardial injury repair.

  3. Dentistry in ancient mesopotamia. (United States)

    Neiburger, E J


    Sumer, an empire in ancient Mesopotamia (southern Iraq), is well known as the cradle of our modern civilization and the home of biblical Abraham. An analysis of skeletal remains from cemeteries at the ancient cities of Ur and Kish (circa 2000 B.C.), show a genetically homogeneous, diseased, and short-lived population. These ancient Mesopotamians suffered severe dental attrition (95 percent), periodontal disease (42 percent), and caries (2 percent). Many oral congenital and neoplastic lesions were noted. During this period, the "local dentists" knew only a few modern dental techniques. Skeletal (dental) evidence indicates that the population suffered from chronic malnutrition. Malnutrition was probably caused by famine, which is substantiated in historic cuneiform and biblical writings, geologic strata samples, and analysis of skeletal and forensic dental pathology. These people had modern dentition but relatively poor dental health. The population's lack of malocclusions, caries, and TMJ problems appear to be due to flat plane occlusion.

  4. Dwarfs in ancient Egypt. (United States)

    Kozma, Chahira


    Ancient Egypt was one of the most advanced and productive civilizations in antiquity, spanning 3000 years before the "Christian" era. Ancient Egyptians built colossal temples and magnificent tombs to honor their gods and religious leaders. Their hieroglyphic language, system of organization, and recording of events give contemporary researchers insights into their daily activities. Based on the record left by their art, the ancient Egyptians documented the presence of dwarfs in almost every facet of life. Due to the hot dry climate and natural and artificial mummification, Egypt is a major source of information on achondroplasia in the old world. The remains of dwarfs are abundant and include complete and partial skeletons. Dwarfs were employed as personal attendants, animal tenders, jewelers, and entertainers. Several high-ranking dwarfs especially from the Old Kingdom (2700-2190 BCE) achieved important status and had lavish burial places close to the pyramids. Their costly tombs in the royal cemeteries and the inscriptions on their statutes indicate their high-ranking position in Egyptian society and their close relation to the king. Some of them were Seneb, Pereniankh, Khnumhotpe, and Djeder. There were at least two dwarf gods, Ptah and Bes. The god Ptah was associated with regeneration and rejuvenation. The god Bes was a protector of sexuality, childbirth, women, and children. He was a favored deity particularly during the Greco-Roman period. His temple was recently excavated in the Baharia oasis in the middle of Egypt. The burial sites and artistic sources provide glimpses of the positions of dwarfs in daily life in ancient Egypt. Dwarfs were accepted in ancient Egypt; their recorded daily activities suggest assimilation into daily life, and their disorder was not shown as a physical handicap. Wisdom writings and moral teachings in ancient Egypt commanded respect for dwarfs and other individuals with disabilities.

  5. Creative Ventures: Ancient Civilizations. (United States)

    Stark, Rebecca

    The open-ended activities in this book are designed to extend the imagination and creativity of students and encourage students to examine their feelings and values about historic eras. Civilizations addressed include ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome, Mayan, Stonehenge, and Mesopotamia. The activities focus upon the cognitive and affective pupil…

  6. Ancient Egypt: Personal Perspectives. (United States)

    Wolinski, Arelene

    This teacher resource book provides information on ancient Egypt via short essays, photographs, maps, charts, and drawings. Egyptian social and religious life, including writing, art, architecture, and even the practice of mummification, is conveniently summarized for the teacher or other practitioner in a series of one to three page articles with…

  7. Cloning Ancient Trees

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    west of Tiananmen Square in Beijing, in Zhongshan Park, there stand several ancient cypress trees, each more than 1,000 years old. Their leafy crowns are all more than 20 meters high, while four have trunks that are 6 meters in circumference. The most unique of these

  8. Ancient ports of Kalinga

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Tripati, S.

    The ancient Kingdom of Kalinga mentioned in the Hathigumpha inscription of Kharavela (1st century B.C.) extended from the mouths of the Ganges to the estuary of Godavari river on the East Coast. Ptolemy (100 A.D.) mentions that Paluru (District...

  9. Ancient deforestation revisited. (United States)

    Hughes, J Donald


    The image of the classical Mediterranean environment of the Greeks and Romans had a formative influence on the art, literature, and historical perception of modern Europe and America. How closely does is this image congruent with the ancient environment as it in reality existed? In particular, how forested was the ancient Mediterranean world, was there deforestation, and if so, what were its effects? The consensus of historians, geographers, and other scholars from the mid-nineteenth century through the first three quarters of the twentieth century was that human activities had depleted the forests to a major extent and caused severe erosion. My research confirmed this general picture. Since then, revisionist historians have questioned these conclusions, maintaining instead that little environmental damage was done to forests and soils in ancient Greco-Roman times. In a reconsideration of the question, this paper looks at recent scientific work providing proxy evidence for the condition of forests at various times in ancient history. I look at three scientific methodologies, namely anthracology, palynology, and computer modeling. Each of these avenues of research offers support for the concept of forest change, both in abundance and species composition, and episodes of deforestation and erosion, and confirms my earlier work.

  10. Printing Ancient Terracotta Warriors (United States)

    Gadecki, Victoria L.


    Standing in awe in Xian, China, at the Terra Cotta warrior archaeological site, the author thought of sharing this experience and excitement with her sixth-grade students. She decided to let her students carve patterns of the ancient soldiers to understand their place in Chinese history. They would make block prints and print multiple soldiers on…

  11. Incorporation of mammalian actin into microfilaments in plant cell nucleus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paves Heiti


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Actin is an ancient molecule that shows more than 90% amino acid homology between mammalian and plant actins. The regions of the actin molecule that are involved in F-actin assembly are largely conserved, and it is likely that mammalian actin is able to incorporate into microfilaments in plant cells but there is no experimental evidence until now. Results Visualization of microfilaments in onion bulb scale epidermis cells by different techniques revealed that rhodamine-phalloidin stained F-actin besides cytoplasm also in the nuclei whereas GFP-mouse talin hybrid protein did not enter the nuclei. Microinjection of fluorescently labeled actin was applied to study the presence of nuclear microfilaments in plant cells. Ratio imaging of injected fluorescent rabbit skeletal muscle actin and phalloidin staining of the microinjected cells showed that mammalian actin was able to incorporate into plant F-actin. The incorporation occurred preferentially in the nucleus and in the perinuclear region of plant cells whereas part of plant microfilaments, mostly in the periphery of cytoplasm, did not incorporate mammalian actin. Conclusions Microinjected mammalian actin is able to enter plant cell's nucleus, whereas incorporation of mammalian actin into plant F-actin occurs preferentially in the nucleus and perinuclear area.

  12. Ancient human microbiomes. (United States)

    Warinner, Christina; Speller, Camilla; Collins, Matthew J; Lewis, Cecil M


    Very recently, we discovered a vast new microbial self: the human microbiome. Our native microbiota interface with our biology and culture to influence our health, behavior, and quality of life, and yet we know very little about their origin, evolution, or ecology. With the advent of industrialization, globalization, and modern sanitation, it is intuitive that we have changed our relationship with microbes, but we have little information about the ancestral state of our microbiome, and we therefore lack a foundation for characterizing this change. High-throughput sequencing has opened up new opportunities in the field of paleomicrobiology, allowing us to investigate the evolution of the complex microbial ecologies that inhabit our bodies. By focusing on recent coprolite and dental calculus research, we explore how emerging research on ancient human microbiomes is changing the way we think about ancient disease and how archaeological studies can contribute to a medical understanding of health and nutrition today.

  13. Comets in ancient India

    CERN Document Server

    Gupta, Patrick Das


    The Indo-aryans of ancient India observed stars and constellations for ascertaining auspicious times for sacrificial rites ordained by vedas. It is but natural that they would have recounted in the vedic texts about comets. In Rigveda ($\\sim $ 1700 - 1500 BC) and Atharvaveda ($\\sim $ 1150 BC), there are references to dhumaketus and ketus, which stand for comets in Sanskrit. Varahamihira in 550 AD and Ballala Sena ($\\sim $ 1100 - 1200 AD) have described a large number of comets recorded by ancient seers such as Parashara, Vriddha Garga, Narada, Garga, etc. In this article, I conjecture that an episode narrated in Mahabharata of a radiant king, Nahusha, ruling the heavens, and later turning into a serpent after he had kicked the seer Agastya (also the star Canopus), is a mythological retelling of a cometary event.

  14. Ambrosia of Ancients

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    IN 196 B.C. a Chinese philosopher observedto his ruler: "A lord's to ppriority is the welfare of his subjects; to the peopie, eating is foremost." Chinese ancients perceived clearly the essentiality of grain cultivation to the survival of the population and country as a whole. This is apparent in the premillennial term for "country" -sheji literally translated as god of land and grain.

  15. Suicide in ancient Greece. (United States)

    Laios, K; Tsoukalas, G; Kontaxaki, M-I; Karamanou, M; Androutsos, G


    The theme of suicide appears several times in ancient Greek literature. However, each such reference acquires special significance depending on the field from which it originates. Most of the information found in mythology, but the suicide in a mythological tale, although in terms of motivation and mental situation of heroes may be in imitation of similar incidents of real life, in fact is linked with the principles of the ancient Greek religion. In ancient drama and mainly in tragedies suicide conduces to the tragic hypostasis of the heroes and to the evolution of the plot and also is a tool in order to be presented the ideas of poets for the relations of the gods, the relation among gods and men and the relation among the men. In ancient Greek philosophy there were the deniers of suicide, who were more concerned about the impact of suicide on society and also these who accepted it, recognizing the right of the individual to put an end to his life, in order to avoid personal misfortunes. Real suicides will be found mostly from historical sources, but most of them concern leading figures of the ancient world. Closer to the problem of suicide in the everyday life of antiquity are ancient Greek medicines, who studied the phenomenon more general without references to specific incidents. Doctors did not approve in principal the suicide and dealt with it as insane behavior in the development of the mental diseases, of melancholia and mania. They considered that the discrepancy of humors in the organ of logic in the human body will cause malfunction, which will lead to the absurdity and consequently to suicide, either due to excessive concentration of black bile in melancholia or due to yellow bile in mania. They believed that greater risk to commit suicide had women, young people and the elderly. As therapy they used the drugs of their time with the intention to induce calm and repression in the ill person, therefore they mainly used mandragora. In general, we would say

  16. Dance in Ancient Greek Culture


    Spalva, Rita


    The greatness and harmony of ancient Greece has had an impact upon the development of the Western European culture to this day. The ancient Greek culture has influenced contemporary literature genres and systems of philosophy, principles of architecture, sculpture and drama and has formed basis for such sciences as astronomy and mathematics. The art of ancient Greece with its penchant for beauty and clarity has been the example of the humanity’s search for an aesthetic ideal. Despite only bei...

  17. Mathematics in ancient Greece

    CERN Document Server

    Dantzig, Tobias


    More than a history of mathematics, this lively book traces mathematical ideas and processes to their sources, stressing the methods used by the masters of the ancient world. Author Tobias Dantzig portrays the human story behind mathematics, showing how flashes of insight in the minds of certain gifted individuals helped mathematics take enormous forward strides. Dantzig demonstrates how the Greeks organized their precursors' melange of geometric maxims into an elegantly abstract deductive system. He also explains the ways in which some of the famous mathematical brainteasers of antiquity led

  18. Ancient concrete works

    CERN Document Server

    Sparavigna, Amelia Carolina


    It is commonly believed that the ancient Romans were the first to create and use concrete. This is not true, as we can easily learn from the Latin literature itself. For sure, Romans were able to prepare high-quality hydraulic cements, comparable with the modern Portland cements. In this paper, we will see that the use of concrete is quite older, ranging back to the Homeric times. For instance, it was used for the floors of some courts and galleries of the Mycenaean palace at Tiryns

  19. Climate and Ancient Societies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Climate, and human responses to it, have a strongly interconnected relationship. This when climate change occurs, the result of either natural or human causes, societies should react and adapt to these. But do they? If so, what is the nature of that change, and are the responses positive...... or negative for the long-term survival of social groups? In this volume, scholars from diverse disciplines including archaeology, geology and climate sciences explore scientific and material evidence for climate changes in the past, their causes, their effects on ancient societies and how those societies...

  20. Exploring Ancient Skies A Survey of Ancient and Cultural Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Kelley, David H


    Exploring Ancient Skies brings together the methods of archaeology and the insights of modern astronomy to explore the science of astronomy as it was practiced in various cultures prior to the invention of the telescope. The book reviews an enormous and growing body of literature on the cultures of the ancient Mediterranean, the Far East, and the New World (particularly Mesoamerica), putting the ancient astronomical materials into their archaeological and cultural contexts. The authors begin with an overview of the field and proceed to essential aspects of naked-eye astronomy, followed by an examination of specific cultures. The book concludes by taking into account the purposes of ancient astronomy: astrology, navigation, calendar regulation, and (not least) the understanding of our place and role in the universe. Skies are recreated to display critical events as they would have appeared to ancient observers—events such as the supernova of 1054 A.D., the "lion horoscope," and the Star of Bethlehem. Explori...

  1. Authenticity in ancient DNA studies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gilbert, M Thomas P; Willerslev, Eske


    Ancient DNA studies represent a powerful tool that can be used to obtain genetic insights into the past. However, despite the publication of large numbers of apparently successful ancient DNA studies, a number of problems exist with the field that are often ignored. Therefore, questions exist as ...

  2. Tamil merchant in ancient Mesopotamia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Malliya Gounder Palanichamy

    Full Text Available Recent analyses of ancient Mesopotamian mitochondrial genomes have suggested a genetic link between the Indian subcontinent and Mesopotamian civilization. There is no consensus on the origin of the ancient Mesopotamians. They may be descendants of migrants, who founded regional Mesopotamian groups like that of Terqa or they may be merchants who were involved in trans Mesopotamia trade. To identify the Indian source population showing linkage to the ancient Mesopotamians, we screened a total of 15,751 mitochondrial DNAs (11,432 from the literature and 4,319 from this study representing all major populations of India. Our results although suggest that south India (Tamil Nadu and northeast India served as the source of the ancient Mesopotamian mtDNA gene pool, mtDNA of these ancient Mesopotamians probably contributed by Tamil merchants who were involved in the Indo-Roman trade.

  3. Tamil merchant in ancient Mesopotamia. (United States)

    Palanichamy, Malliya Gounder; Mitra, Bikash; Debnath, Monojit; Agrawal, Suraksha; Chaudhuri, Tapas Kumar; Zhang, Ya-Ping


    Recent analyses of ancient Mesopotamian mitochondrial genomes have suggested a genetic link between the Indian subcontinent and Mesopotamian civilization. There is no consensus on the origin of the ancient Mesopotamians. They may be descendants of migrants, who founded regional Mesopotamian groups like that of Terqa or they may be merchants who were involved in trans Mesopotamia trade. To identify the Indian source population showing linkage to the ancient Mesopotamians, we screened a total of 15,751 mitochondrial DNAs (11,432 from the literature and 4,319 from this study) representing all major populations of India. Our results although suggest that south India (Tamil Nadu) and northeast India served as the source of the ancient Mesopotamian mtDNA gene pool, mtDNA of these ancient Mesopotamians probably contributed by Tamil merchants who were involved in the Indo-Roman trade.

  4. Characterization of Ancient Tripitaka (United States)

    Gong, Y. X.; Geng, L.; Gong, D. C.


    Tripitaka is the world's most comprehensive version of Buddhist sutra. There are limited numbers of Tripitaka currently preserved, most of them present various patterns of degradation. As little is known about the materials and crafts used in Tripitaka, it appeared necessary to identify them, and to further define adapted conservation treatment. In this work, a study concerning the paper source and dyestuff of the Tripitaka from approximate 16th century was carried out using fiber analysis and thin-layer chromatography (TLC). The results proved that the papers were mainly made from hemp or bark of mulberry tree, and indigo was used for colorizing the paper. At the end, we provide with suggestions for protecting and restoring the ancient Tripitaka.

  5. Autophagy in mammalian cells

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Kadija; Abounit; Tiziano; M; Scarabelli; Roy; B; McCauley


    Autophagy is a regulated process for the degradation of cellular components that has been well conserved in eukaryotic cells. The discovery of autophagy-regulating proteins in yeast has been important in understanding this process. Although many parallels exist between fungi and mammals in the regulation and execution of autophagy, there are some important differences. The preautophagosomal structure found in yeast has not been identified in mammals, and it seems that there may be multiple origins for autophagosomes, including endoplasmic reticulum, plasma membrane and mitochondrial outer membrane. The maturation of the phagophore is largely dependent on 5’-AMP activated protein kinase and other factors that lead to the dephosphorylation of mammalian target of rapamycin. Once the process is initiated, the mammalian phagophore elongates and matures into an autophagosome by processes that are similar to those in yeast. Cargo selection is dependent on the ubiquitin conjugation of protein aggregates and organelles and recognition of these conjugates by autophagosomal receptors. Lysosomal degradation of cargo produces metabolites that can be recycled during stress. Autophagy is an impor-tant cellular safeguard during starvation in all eukaryotes; however, it may have more complicated, tissue specific roles in mammals. With certain exceptions, autophagy seems to be cytoprotective, and defects in the process have been associated with human disease.

  6. Hypothesis on the dual origin of the mammalian subplate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan F Montiel


    Full Text Available The development of the mammalian neocortex relies heavily on subplate. The proportion of this cell population varies considerably in different mammalian species. Subplate is almost undetectable in marsupials, forms a thin, but distinct layer in mouse and rat, a larger layer in carnivores and big-brained mammals as pig and a highly developed embryonic structure in human and non-human primates. The evolutionary origin of subplate neurons is the subject of current debate. Some hypothesize that subplate represents the ancestral cortex of sauropsids, while others consider it to be an increasingly complex phylogenetic novelty of the mammalian neocortex. Here we review recent work on expression of several genes that were originally identified in rodent as highly and differentially expressed in subplate. We relate these observations to cellular morphology, birthdating and hodology in the dorsal cortex/dorsal pallium of several amniote species. Based on this reviewed evidence we argue for a third hypothesis according to which subplate contains both ancestral and newly derived cell populations. We propose that the mammalian subplate originally derived from a phylogenetically ancient structure in the dorsal pallium of stem amniotes, but subsequently expanded with additional cell populations in the synapsid lineage to support an increasingly complex cortical plate development. Further understanding of the detailed molecular taxonomy, somatodendritic morphology and connectivity of subplate in a comparative context should contribute to the identification of the ancestral and newly evolved populations of subplate neurons.

  7. Hypothesis on the Dual Origin of the Mammalian Subplate (United States)

    Montiel, Juan F.; Wang, Wei Zhi; Oeschger, Franziska M.; Hoerder-Suabedissen, Anna; Tung, Wan Ling; García-Moreno, Fernando; Holm, Ida Elizabeth; Villalón, Aldo; Molnár, Zoltán


    The development of the mammalian neocortex relies heavily on subplate. The proportion of this cell population varies considerably in different mammalian species. Subplate is almost undetectable in marsupials, forms a thin, but distinct layer in mouse and rat, a larger layer in carnivores and big-brained mammals as pig, and a highly developed embryonic structure in human and non-human primates. The evolutionary origin of subplate neurons is the subject of current debate. Some hypothesize that subplate represents the ancestral cortex of sauropsids, while others consider it to be an increasingly complex phylogenetic novelty of the mammalian neocortex. Here we review recent work on expression of several genes that were originally identified in rodent as highly and differentially expressed in subplate. We relate these observations to cellular morphology, birthdating, and hodology in the dorsal cortex/dorsal pallium of several amniote species. Based on this reviewed evidence we argue for a third hypothesis according to which subplate contains both ancestral and newly derived cell populations. We propose that the mammalian subplate originally derived from a phylogenetically ancient structure in the dorsal pallium of stem amniotes, but subsequently expanded with additional cell populations in the synapsid lineage to support an increasingly complex cortical plate development. Further understanding of the detailed molecular taxonomy, somatodendritic morphology, and connectivity of subplate in a comparative context should contribute to the identification of the ancestral and newly evolved populations of subplate neurons. PMID:21519390

  8. Layout of Ancient Maya Cities (United States)

    Aylesworth, Grant R.

    Although there is little doubt that the ancient Maya of Mesoamerica laid their cities out based, in part, on astronomical considerations, the proliferation of "cosmograms" in contemporary scholarly discourse has complicated matters for the acceptance of rigorous archaeoastronomical research.

  9. Astronomical Significance of Ancient Monuments (United States)

    Simonia, I.


    Astronomical significance of Gokhnari megalithic monument (eastern Georgia) is considered. Possible connection of Amirani ancient legend with Gokhnari monument is discussed. Concepts of starry practicality and solar stations are proposed.

  10. Hunting for Ancient Rocky Shores. (United States)

    Johnson, Markes E.


    Promotes the study of ancient rocky shores by showing how they can be recognized and what directions future research may follow. A bibliography of previous research articles, arranged by geologic period, is provided in the appendix to this paper. (CW)

  11. Mammalian cytosolic glutathione transferases. (United States)

    Dourado, Daniel F A R; Fernandes, Pedro Alexandrino; Ramos, Maria João


    Glutathione Transferases (GSTs) are crucial enzymes in the cell detoxification process catalyzing the nucleophilic attack of glutathione (GSH) on toxic electrophilic substrates and producing a less dangerous compound. GSTs studies are of great importance since they have been implicated in the development of drug resistance in tumoral cells and are related to human diseases such as Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, atherosclerois, liver cirrhosis, aging and cataract formation. In this review we start by providing an evolutionary perspective of the mammalian cytosolic GSTs known to date. Later on we focus on the more abundant classes alpha, mu and pi and their structure, catalysis, metabolic associated functions, drug resistance relation and inhibition methods. Finally, we introduce the recent insights on the GST class zeta from a metabolic perspective.

  12. Did the ancient Egyptians migrate to ancient Nigeria?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jock M. Agai


    Full Text Available Literatures concerning the history of West African peoples published from 1900 to 1970 debate�the possible migrations of the Egyptians into West Africa. Writers like Samuel Johnson and�Lucas Olumide believe that the ancient Egyptians penetrated through ancient Nigeria but Leo�Frobenius and Geoffrey Parrinder frowned at this opinion. Using the works of these early�20th century writers of West African history together with a Yoruba legend which teaches�about the origin of their earliest ancestor(s, this researcher investigates the theories that the�ancient Egyptians had contact with the ancient Nigerians and particularly with the Yorubas.Intradisciplinary and/or interdisciplinary implications: There is an existing ideology�amongst the Yorubas and other writers of Yoruba history that the original ancestors of�the Yorubas originated in ancient Egypt hence there was migration between Egypt and�Yorubaland. This researcher contends that even if there was migration between Egypt and�Nigeria, such migration did not take place during the predynastic and dynastic period as�speculated by some scholars. The subject is open for further research.

  13. Adrenomedullin in mammalian embryogenesis. (United States)

    Garayoa, Mercedes; Bodegas, Elena; Cuttitta, Frank; Montuenga, Luis M


    Here are summarized data supporting that adrenomedullin (AM) is a multifunctional factor involved in the complex regulatory mechanisms of mammalian development. During rodent embryogenesis, AM is first expressed in the heart, followed by a broader but also defined spatio-temporal pattern of expression in vascular, neural, and skeletal-forming tissues as well as in the main embryonic internal organs. AM pattern of expression is suggestive of its involvement in the control of embryonic invasion, proliferation, and differentiation processes, probably through autocrine or paracrine modes of action. AM levels in fetoplacental tissues, uterus, maternal and umbilical plasma are highly increased during normal gestation. These findings in addition to other physiological and gene targeting studies support the importance of AM as a vasorelaxant factor implicated in the regulation of maternal vascular adaptation to pregnancy, as well as of fetal and fetoplacental circulations. AM is also present in amniotic fluid and milk, which is suggestive of additional functions in the maturation and immunological protection of the fetus. Altered expression of AM has been found in some gestational pathologies, although it is not yet clear whether this corresponds to causative or compensatory mechanisms. Future studies in regard to the distribution and expression levels of the molecules known to function as AM receptors, together with data on the action of complement factor H (an AM binding protein), may help to better define the roles of AM during embryonic development.

  14. Mammalian gut immunity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benoit Chassaing


    Full Text Available The mammalian intestinal tract is the largest immune organ in the body and comprises cells from non-hemopoietic (epithelia, Paneth cells, goblet cells and hemopoietic (macrophages, dendritic cells, T-cells origin, and is also a dwelling for trillions of microbes collectively known as the microbiota. The homeostasis of this large microbial biomass is prerequisite to maintain host health by maximizing beneficial symbiotic relationships and minimizing the risks of living in such close proximity. Both microbiota and host immune system communicate with each other to mutually maintain homeostasis in what could be called a "love-hate relationship." Further, the host innate and adaptive immune arms of the immune system cooperate and compensate each other to maintain the equilibrium of a highly complex gut ecosystem in a stable and stringent fashion. Any imbalance due to innate or adaptive immune deficiency or aberrant immune response may lead to dysbiosis and low-grade to robust gut inflammation, finally resulting in metabolic diseases.

  15. The Mammalian Septin Interactome (United States)

    Neubauer, Katharina; Zieger, Barbara


    Septins are GTP-binding and membrane-interacting proteins with a highly conserved domain structure involved in various cellular processes, including cytoskeleton organization, cytokinesis, and membrane dynamics. To date, 13 different septin genes have been identified in mammals (SEPT1 to SEPT12 and SEPT14), which can be classified into four distinct subgroups based on the sequence homology of their domain structure (SEPT2, SEPT3, SEPT6, and SEPT7 subgroup). The family members of these subgroups have a strong affinity for other septins and form apolar tri-, hexa-, or octameric complexes consisting of multiple septin polypeptides. The first characterized core complex is the hetero-trimer SEPT2-6-7. Within these complexes single septins can be exchanged in a subgroup-specific manner. Hexamers contain SEPT2 and SEPT6 subgroup members and SEPT7 in two copies each whereas the octamers additionally comprise two SEPT9 subgroup septins. The various isoforms seem to determine the function and regulation of the septin complex. Septins self-assemble into higher-order structures, including filaments and rings in orders, which are typical for different cell types. Misregulation of septins leads to human diseases such as neurodegenerative and bleeding disorders. In non-dividing cells such as neuronal tissue and platelets septins have been associated with exocytosis. However, many mechanistic details and roles attributed to septins are poorly understood. We describe here some important mammalian septin interactions with a special focus on the clinically relevant septin interactions. PMID:28224124

  16. Evolutionary patterns of RNA-based duplication in non-mammalian chordates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ming Chen

    Full Text Available The role of RNA-based duplication, or retroposition, in the evolution of new gene functions in mammals, plants, and Drosophila has been widely reported. However, little is known about RNA-based duplication in non-mammalian chordates. In this study, we screened ten non-mammalian chordate genomes for retrocopies and investigated their evolutionary patterns. We identified numerous retrocopies in these species. Examination of the age distribution of these retrocopies revealed no burst of young retrocopies in ancient chordate species. Upon comparing these non-mammalian chordate species to the mammalian species, we observed that a larger fraction of the non-mammalian retrocopies was under strong evolutionary constraints than mammalian retrocopies are, as evidenced by signals of purifying selection and expression profiles. For the Western clawed frog, Medaka, and Sea squirt, many retrogenes have evolved gonad and brain expression patterns, similar to what was observed in human. Testing of retrogene movement in the Medaka genome, where the nascent sex chrosomes have been well assembled, did not reveal any significant gene movement. Taken together, our analyses demonstrate that RNA-based duplication generates many functional genes and can make a significant contribution to the evolution of non-mammalian genomes.

  17. Functional Amyloid Formation within Mammalian Tissue.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)


    Full Text Available Amyloid is a generally insoluble, fibrous cross-beta sheet protein aggregate. The process of amyloidogenesis is associated with a variety of neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer, Parkinson, and Huntington disease. We report the discovery of an unprecedented functional mammalian amyloid structure generated by the protein Pmel17. This discovery demonstrates that amyloid is a fundamental nonpathological protein fold utilized by organisms from bacteria to humans. We have found that Pmel17 amyloid templates and accelerates the covalent polymerization of reactive small molecules into melanin-a critically important biopolymer that protects against a broad range of cytotoxic insults including UV and oxidative damage. Pmel17 amyloid also appears to play a role in mitigating the toxicity associated with melanin formation by sequestering and minimizing diffusion of highly reactive, toxic melanin precursors out of the melanosome. Intracellular Pmel17 amyloidogenesis is carefully orchestrated by the secretory pathway, utilizing membrane sequestration and proteolytic steps to protect the cell from amyloid and amyloidogenic intermediates that can be toxic. While functional and pathological amyloid share similar structural features, critical differences in packaging and kinetics of assembly enable the usage of Pmel17 amyloid for normal function. The discovery of native Pmel17 amyloid in mammals provides key insight into the molecular basis of both melanin formation and amyloid pathology, and demonstrates that native amyloid (amyloidin may be an ancient, evolutionarily conserved protein quaternary structure underpinning diverse pathways contributing to normal cell and tissue physiology.

  18. Functional amyloid formation within mammalian tissue.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Douglas M Fowler


    Full Text Available Amyloid is a generally insoluble, fibrous cross-beta sheet protein aggregate. The process of amyloidogenesis is associated with a variety of neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer, Parkinson, and Huntington disease. We report the discovery of an unprecedented functional mammalian amyloid structure generated by the protein Pmel17. This discovery demonstrates that amyloid is a fundamental nonpathological protein fold utilized by organisms from bacteria to humans. We have found that Pmel17 amyloid templates and accelerates the covalent polymerization of reactive small molecules into melanin-a critically important biopolymer that protects against a broad range of cytotoxic insults including UV and oxidative damage. Pmel17 amyloid also appears to play a role in mitigating the toxicity associated with melanin formation by sequestering and minimizing diffusion of highly reactive, toxic melanin precursors out of the melanosome. Intracellular Pmel17 amyloidogenesis is carefully orchestrated by the secretory pathway, utilizing membrane sequestration and proteolytic steps to protect the cell from amyloid and amyloidogenic intermediates that can be toxic. While functional and pathological amyloid share similar structural features, critical differences in packaging and kinetics of assembly enable the usage of Pmel17 amyloid for normal function. The discovery of native Pmel17 amyloid in mammals provides key insight into the molecular basis of both melanin formation and amyloid pathology, and demonstrates that native amyloid (amyloidin may be an ancient, evolutionarily conserved protein quaternary structure underpinning diverse pathways contributing to normal cell and tissue physiology.

  19. Neonatal medicine in ancient art. (United States)

    Yurdakök, Murat


    There are a limited number of artistic objects from ancient times with particular importance in neonatal medicine. The best examples are figurines from ancient Egypt of Isis nursing Horus, showing the importance of breastfeeding. The earliest images of the human fetus were made by the Olmecs in Mexico around 1200- 400 BCE. One of the earliest representations of congenital anomalies is a figurine of diencephalic twins thought to be the goddess of Anatolia, dated to around 6500 BCE. In addition to these figurines, three sets of twins in the ancient world have medical importance, and Renaissance artists often used them as a subject for their paintings: "direct suckling animals" (Romulus and Remus), "heteropaternal superfecundation" (mother: Leda, fathers: Zeus, the king of the Olympian gods, and Leda's husband, Tyndareus), and "twin-to-twin transfusion" in monozygotic twins (Jacob and Esau).

  20. Ancient "Observatories" - A Relevant Concept? (United States)

    Belmonte, Juan Antonio

    It is quite common, when reading popular books on astronomy, to see a place referred to as "the oldest observatory in the world". In addition, numerous books on archaeoastronomy, of various levels of quality, frequently refer to the existence of "prehistoric" or "ancient" observatories when describing or citing monuments that were certainly not built with the primary purpose of observing the skies. Internet sources are also guilty of this practice. In this chapter, the different meanings of the word observatory will be analyzed, looking at how their significances can be easily confused or even interchanged. The proclaimed "ancient observatories" are a typical result of this situation. Finally, the relevance of the concept of the ancient observatory will be evaluated.

  1. Skeletal dysplasia in ancient Egypt. (United States)

    Kozma, Chahira


    The ancient Egyptian civilization lasted for over 3000 years and ended in 30 BCE. Many aspects of ancient Egyptian culture, including the existence of skeletal dysplasias, and in particular achondroplasia, are well known through the monuments and records that survived until modern times. The hot and dry climate in Egypt allowed for the preservation of bodies and skeletal anomalies. The oldest dwarf skeleton, the Badarian skeleton (4500 BCE), possibly represents an epiphyseal disorder. Among the remains of dwarfs with achondroplasia from ancient Egypt (2686-2190 BCE), exists a skeleton of a pregnant female, believed to have died during delivery with a baby's remains in situ. British museums have partial skeletons of dwarfs with achondroplasia, humeri probably affected with mucopolysaccharidoses, and a skeleton of a child with osteogenesis imperfecta. Skeletal dysplasia is also found among royal remains. The mummy of the pharaoh Siptah (1342-1197 BCE) shows a deformity of the left leg and foot. A mummified fetus, believed to be the daughter of king Tutankhamun, has scoliosis, spina bifida, and Sprengel deformity. In 2006 I reviewed the previously existing knowledge of dwarfism in ancient Egypt. The purpose of this second historical review is to add to that knowledge with an expanded contribution. The artistic documentation of people with skeletal dysplasia from ancient Egypt is plentiful including hundreds of amulets, statues, and drawing on tomb and temple walls. Examination of artistic reliefs provides a glance of the role of people with skeletal dysplasia and the societal attitudes toward them. Both artistic evidence and moral teachings in ancient Egypt reveal wide integration of individuals with disabilities into the society.

  2. Night blindness and ancient remedy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H.A. Hajar Al Binali


    Full Text Available The aim of this article is to briefly review the history of night blindness and its treatment from ancient times until the present. The old Egyptians, the Babylonians, the Greeks and the Arabs used animal liver for treatment and successfully cured the disease. The author had the opportunity to observe the application of the old remedy to a patient. Now we know what the ancients did not know, that night blindness is caused by Vitamin A deficiency and the animal liver is the store house for Vitamin A.

  3. Tuberculosis in ancient times

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louise Cilliers


    Full Text Available In spite of an array of effective antibiotics, tuberculosis is still very common in developing countries where overcrowding, malnutrition and poor hygienic conditions prevail. Over the past 30 years associated HIV infection has worsened the situation by increasing the infection rate and mortality of tuberculosis. Of those diseases caused by a single organism only HIV causes more deaths internationally than tuberculosis. The tubercle bacillus probably first infected man in Neolithic times, and then via infected cattle, but the causative Mycobacteriacea have been in existence for 300 million years. Droplet infection is the most common way of acquiring tuberculosis, although ingestion (e.g. of infected cows’ milk may occur. Tuberculosis probably originated in Africa. The earliest path gnomonic evidence of human tuberculosis in man was found in osteo-archaeological findings of bone tuberculosis (Pott’s disease of the spine in the skeleton of anEgyptian priest from the 21st Dynasty (approximately 1 000 BC. Suggestive but not conclusiveevidence of tuberculotic lesions had been found in even earlier skeletons from Egypt and Europe. Medical hieroglyphics from ancient Egypt are silent on the disease, which could be tuberculosis,as do early Indian and Chinese writings. The Old Testament refers to the disease schachapeth, translated as phthisis in the Greek Septuagint. Although the Bible is not specific about this condition, tuberculosis is still called schachapeth in modern Hebrew. In pre-Hippocratic Greece Homer did not mention phthisis, a word meaning non-specific wasting of the body. However. Alexander of Tralles (6th century BC seemed to narrow the concept down to a specific disease, and in the Hippocratic Corpus (5th-4th centuries BC phthisis can be recognised as tuberculosis. It was predominantly a respiratory disease commonly seen and considered to be caused by an imbalance of bodily humours. It was commonest in autumn, winter and spring

  4. NF-B Links CO2 Sensing to Innate Immunity and Inflammation in Mammalian Cells


    Cummins, Eoin P.; Oliver, K. M.; Lenihan, Colin R.; et al


    Molecular O2 and CO2 are the primary substrate and product of aerobic metabolism, respectively. Levels of these physiologic gases in the cell microenvironment vary dramatically both in health and in diseases, such as chronic inflammation, ischemia, and cancer, in which metabolism is significantly altered. The identification of the hypoxia-inducible factor led to the discovery of an ancient and direct link between tissue O2 and gene transcription. In this study, we demonstrate that mammalian c...

  5. Origin and evolution of developmental enhancers in the mammalian neocortex. (United States)

    Emera, Deena; Yin, Jun; Reilly, Steven K; Gockley, Jake; Noonan, James P


    Morphological innovations such as the mammalian neocortex may involve the evolution of novel regulatory sequences. However, de novo birth of regulatory elements active during morphogenesis has not been extensively studied in mammals. Here, we use H3K27ac-defined regulatory elements active during human and mouse corticogenesis to identify enhancers that were likely active in the ancient mammalian forebrain. We infer the phylogenetic origins of these enhancers and find that ∼20% arose in the mammalian stem lineage, coincident with the emergence of the neocortex. Implementing a permutation strategy that controls for the nonrandom variation in the ages of background genomic sequences, we find that mammal-specific enhancers are overrepresented near genes involved in cell migration, cell signaling, and axon guidance. Mammal-specific enhancers are also overrepresented in modules of coexpressed genes in the cortex that are associated with these pathways, notably ephrin and semaphorin signaling. Our results also provide insight into the mechanisms of regulatory innovation in mammals. We find that most neocortical enhancers did not originate by en bloc exaptation of transposons. Young neocortical enhancers exhibit smaller H3K27ac footprints and weaker evolutionary constraint in eutherian mammals than older neocortical enhancers. Based on these observations, we present a model of the enhancer life cycle in which neocortical enhancers initially emerge from genomic background as short, weakly constrained "proto-enhancers." Many proto-enhancers are likely lost, but some may serve as nucleation points for complex enhancers to evolve.

  6. Classification of ancient mammal individuals using dental pulp MALDI-TOF MS peptide profiling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thi-Nguyen-Ny Tran

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The classification of ancient animal corpses at the species level remains a challenging task for forensic scientists and anthropologists. Severe damage and mixed, tiny pieces originating from several skeletons may render morphological classification virtually impossible. Standard approaches are based on sequencing mitochondrial and nuclear targets. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We present a method that can accurately classify mammalian species using dental pulp and mass spectrometry peptide profiling. Our work was organized into three successive steps. First, after extracting proteins from the dental pulp collected from 37 modern individuals representing 13 mammalian species, trypsin-digested peptides were used for matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry analysis. The resulting peptide profiles accurately classified every individual at the species level in agreement with parallel cytochrome b gene sequencing gold standard. Second, using a 279-modern spectrum database, we blindly classified 33 of 37 teeth collected in 37 modern individuals (89.1%. Third, we classified 10 of 18 teeth (56% collected in 15 ancient individuals representing five mammal species including human, from five burial sites dating back 8,500 years. Further comparison with an upgraded database comprising ancient specimen profiles yielded 100% classification in ancient teeth. Peptide sequencing yield 4 and 16 different non-keratin proteins including collagen (alpha-1 type I and alpha-2 type I in human ancient and modern dental pulp, respectively. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Mass spectrometry peptide profiling of the dental pulp is a new approach that can be added to the arsenal of species classification tools for forensics and anthropology as a complementary method to DNA sequencing. The dental pulp is a new source for collagen and other proteins for the species classification of modern and ancient mammal individuals.

  7. Phylogenetic estimation of timescales using ancient DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Molak, Martyna; Lorenzen, Eline; Shapiro, Beth;


    In recent years, ancient DNA has increasingly been used for estimating molecular timescales, particularly in studies of substitution rates and demographic histories. Molecular clocks can be calibrated using temporal information from ancient DNA sequences. This information comes from the ages...

  8. The eye and its diseases in Ancient Egypt

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, S. Ry


    Ophthalmology, History of ophthalmology, eyes in the Ancient Egypt, eye disease in Ancient Egypt, porotic hyperostosis, mummification......Ophthalmology, History of ophthalmology, eyes in the Ancient Egypt, eye disease in Ancient Egypt, porotic hyperostosis, mummification...

  9. The ancient art of memory. (United States)

    Hobson, Allan


    Revision of Freud's theory requires a new way of seeking dream meaning. With the idea of elaborative encoding, Sue Llewellyn has provided a method of dream interpretation that takes into account both modern sleep science and the ancient art of memory. Her synthesis is elegant and compelling. But is her hypothesis testable?

  10. Ancient medicine--a review. (United States)

    Zuskin, Eugenija; Lipozencić, Jasna; Pucarin-Cvetković, Jasna; Mustajbegović, Jadranka; Schachter, Neil; Mucić-Pucić, Branka; Neralić-Meniga, Inja


    Different aspects of medicine and/or healing in several societies are presented. In the ancient times as well as today medicine has been closely related to magic, science and religion. Various ancient societies and cultures had developed different views of medicine. It was believed that a human being has two bodies: a visible body that belongs to the earth and an invisible body of heaven. In the earliest prehistoric days, a different kind of medicine was practiced in countries such as Egypt, Greece, Rome, Mesopotamia, India, Tibet, China, and others. In those countries, "medicine people" practiced medicine from the magic to modern physical practices. Medicine was magical and mythological, and diseases were attributed mostly to the supernatural forces. The foundation of modern medicine can be traced back to ancient Greeks. Tibetan culture, for instance, even today, combines spiritual and practical medicine. Chinese medicine developed as a concept of yin and yang, acupuncture and acupressure, and it has even been used in the modern medicine. During medieval Europe, major universities and medical schools were established. In the ancient time, before hospitals had developed, patients were treated mostly in temples.

  11. Ancient and modern environmental DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Mikkel Winther; Overballe-Petersen, Søren; Ermini, Luca


    DNA obtained from environmental samples such as sediments, ice or water (environmental DNA, eDNA), represents an important source of information on past and present biodiversity. It has revealed an ancient forest in Greenland, extended by several thousand years the survival dates for mainland woo...

  12. A Huge Ancient Schwannoma of the Epiglottis. (United States)

    Lee, Dong Hoon; Kim, Jo Heon; Yoon, Tae Mi; Lee, Joon Kyoo; Lim, Sang Chul


    Ancient schwannoma of the epiglottis is extremely rare. The authors report the first case of a patient with a huge ancient schwannoma of the epiglottis. Clinicians should consider the possibility that ancient schwannoma may originate in the epiglottis mimicking the other more frequently observed lesions.

  13. Electroporation into Cultured Mammalian Embryos (United States)

    Nomura, Tadashi; Takahashi, Masanori; Osumi, Noriko

    Over the last century, mammalian embryos have been used extensively as a common animal model to investigate fundamental questions in the field of developmental biology. More recently, the establishment of transgenic and gene-targeting systems in laboratory mice has enabled researchers to unveil the genetic mechanisms under lying complex developmental processes (Mak, 2007). However, our understanding of cell—cell interactions and their molecular basis in the early stages of mammalian embryogenesis is still very fragmentary. One of the major problems is the difficulty of precise manipulation and limited accessibility to mammalian embryos via uterus wall. Unfortunately, existing tissue and organotypic culture systems per se do not fully recapitulate three-dimensional, dynamic processes of organogenesis observed in vivo. Although transgenic animal technology and virus-mediated gene delivery are useful to manipulate gene expression, these techniques take much time and financial costs, which limit their use.

  14. Ancient DNA from marine mammals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Foote, Andrew David; Hofreiter, Michael; Morin, Philip A


    such as bone, tooth, baleen, skin, fur, whiskers and scrimshaw using ancient DNA (aDNA) approaches provide an oppor- tunity for investigating such changes over evolutionary and ecological timescales. Here, we review the application of aDNA techniques to the study of marine mammals. Most of the studies have...... focused on detecting changes in genetic diversity following periods of exploitation and environmental change. To date, these studies have shown that even small sample sizes can provide useful information on historical genetic diversity. Ancient DNA has also been used in investigations of changes...... in distribution and range of marine mammal species; we review these studies and discuss the limitations of such ‘presence only’ studies. Combining aDNA data with stable isotopes can provide further insights into changes in ecology and we review past studies and suggest future potential applications. We also...

  15. Mitogenomic analyses from ancient DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Paijmans, Johanna L.A.; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Hofreiter, Michael


    analyses (whether using modern or ancient DNA) were largely restricted to the analysis of short fragments of the mitochondrial genome. However, due to many technological advances during the past decade, a growing number of studies have explored the power of complete mitochondrial genome sequences...... (mitogenomes). Such studies were initially limited to analyses of extant organisms, but developments in both DNA sequencing technologies and general methodological aspects related to working with degraded DNA have resulted in complete mitogenomes becoming increasingly popular for ancient DNA studies as well....... To date, at least 124 partially or fully assembled mitogenomes from more than 20 species have been obtained, and, given the rapid progress in sequencing technology, this number is likely to dramatically increase in the future. The increased information content offered by analysing full mitogenomes has...

  16. Molecular analysis of ancient caries. (United States)

    Simón, Marc; Montiel, Rafael; Smerling, Andrea; Solórzano, Eduvigis; Díaz, Nancy; Álvarez-Sandoval, Brenda A; Jiménez-Marín, Andrea R; Malgosa, Assumpció


    An 84 base pair sequence of the Streptococcus mutans virulence factor, known as dextranase, has been obtained from 10 individuals from the Bronze Age to the Modern Era in Europe and from before and after the colonization in America. Modern samples show four polymorphic sites that have not been found in the ancient samples studied so far. The nucleotide and haplotype diversity of this region have increased over time, which could be reflecting the footprint of a population expansion. While this segment has apparently evolved according to neutral evolution, we have been able to detect one site that is under positive selection pressure both in present and past populations. This study is a first step to study the evolution of this microorganism, analysed using direct evidence obtained from ancient remains.

  17. Models of ancient sound vases (United States)

    Bruel, Per V.


    Models were made of vases described by Vitruvius in Rome in about the year 70 A.D. and of sound vases (lydpotter) placed in Danish churches from 1100-1300 A.D. Measurements of vase's resonant frequencies and damping (reradiation) verified that the model vases obeyed expected physical rules. It was concluded that the excellent acoustical quality of many ancient Greek and Roman theaters cannot be ascribed to the vases placed under their seats. This study also found that sound vases placed in Nordic churches could not have shortened the reverberation time because there are far too few of them. Moreover, they could not have covered a broad frequency range. It remains a mystery why vases were installed under the seats of ancient Greek theaters and why, 1000 years later, Danes placed vases in their churches.

  18. Splendid Arts Fram Ancient Capitals

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    IT was in the golden autumn in Beijing, when the sky was high and the air clear, that I hurried to Zhongshan Park to witness the display of the songs and dances of the seven Chinese ancient capitals. The flower beds arranged for the celebration of National Day were still there and the colorful blooms looked especially bright in the sunshine. The seven cities which have served as capitals in Chinese history are Beijing,

  19. Psychiatric Thoughts in Ancient India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ravi Abhyankar


    Full Text Available A review of the literature regarding psychiatric thoughts in ancient India is attempted. Besides interesting reading, many of the concepts are still relevant and can be used in day-to-day practice especially towards healthy and happy living. Certain concepts are surprisingly contemporary and valid today. They can be used in psychotherapy and counselling and for promoting mental health. However, the description and classification of mental illness is not in tune with modern psychiatry.

  20. Nanoscience of an ancient pigment. (United States)

    Johnson-McDaniel, Darrah; Barrett, Christopher A; Sharafi, Asma; Salguero, Tina T


    We describe monolayer nanosheets of calcium copper tetrasilicate, CaCuSi(4)O(10), which have strong near-IR luminescence and are amenable to solution processing methods. The facile exfoliation of bulk CaCuSi(4)O(10) into nanosheets is especially surprising in view of the long history of this material as the colored component of Egyptian blue, a well-known pigment from ancient times.

  1. Evolutionary dynamics of mammalian karyotypes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlo Alberto Redi


    Full Text Available This special volume of Cytogenetic and Genome Research (edited by Roscoe Stanyon, University of Florence and Alexander Graphodatsky, Siberian division of the Russian Academy of Sciences is dedicated to the fascinating long search of the forces behind the evolutionary dynamics of mammalian karyotypes, revealed after the hypotonic miracle of the 1950s....

  2. Technology of mammalian cell encapsulation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Uludag, H; De Vos, P; Tresco, PA


    Entrapment of mammalian cells in physical membranes has been practiced since the early 1950s when it was originally introduced as a basic research tool. The method has since been developed based on the promise of its therapeutic usefulness in tissue transplantation. Encapsulation physically isolates

  3. Anaho Island: Mammalian species richness report (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This study assessed the mammalian species richness on Anaho Island using live trapping between July 18th and July 23rd 2005. The last mammalian species richness...

  4. From Here I Walked into Ancient China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yan Manman


    @@ When I was a little girl, I had heard about the eighth world wonder - terra cotta warriors in Qin Emperor Mausoleum.I have been wishing to visit there to see those magnificent scene which were created thousands of years ago.While with my age added, I gradually learned the terra cotta warriors were lust only one of many ancient marks of Xi'an, which once was capital of 13 dynasties in ancient China.Xi'an actually is a carrier of ancient China culture, where I walked from the modern world to the ancient China.

  5. Ancient Indian Leaps into Mathematics

    CERN Document Server

    Yadav, B S


    This book presents contributions of mathematicians covering topics from ancient India, placing them in the broader context of the history of mathematics. Although the translations of some Sanskrit mathematical texts are available in the literature, Indian contributions are rarely presented in major Western historical works. Yet some of the well-known and universally-accepted discoveries from India, including the concept of zero and the decimal representation of numbers, have made lasting contributions to the foundation of modern mathematics. Through a systematic approach, this book examines th

  6. Chinese Ancient Football with Romanticism

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    江凌; 李晓勤


    Like other traditional Chinese sports, the ancient Chinese football, which used to be called “cuju”, has some differences from several sports in western countries concerning cultural and hamanist purport as well as metal aspiration, although it was similar with modern football to some extent, such as a leather-made ball with a bladder, rectangle sports ground, referee, goal and certain competitiveness. The author tries to talk about such difference in cultural and humanist purport as well as mental aspiration by making a comparison between “cuju” and modern football.

  7. The shape of mammalian phylogeny

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Purvis, Andy; Fritz, Susanne A; Rodríguez, Jesús


    Mammalian phylogeny is far too asymmetric for all contemporaneous lineages to have had equal chances of diversifying. We consider this asymmetry or imbalance from four perspectives. First, we infer a minimal set of 'regime changes'-points at which net diversification rate has changed-identifying 15...... significant radiations and 12 clades that may be 'downshifts'. We next show that mammalian phylogeny is similar in shape to a large set of published phylogenies of other vertebrate, arthropod and plant groups, suggesting that many clades may diversify under a largely shared set of 'rules'. Third, we simulate...... six simple macroevolutionary models, showing that those where speciation slows down as geographical or niche space is filled, produce more realistic phylogenies than do models involving key innovations. Lastly, an analysis of the spatial scaling of imbalance shows that the phylogeny of species within...

  8. Bioenergetics of Mammalian Sperm Capacitation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandra Ferramosca


    Full Text Available After ejaculation, the mammalian male gamete must undergo the capacitation process, which is a prerequisite for egg fertilization. The bioenergetics of sperm capacitation is poorly understood despite its fundamental role in sustaining the biochemical and molecular events occurring during gamete activation. Glycolysis and mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS are the two major metabolic pathways producing ATP which is the primary source of energy for spermatozoa. Since recent data suggest that spermatozoa have the ability to use different metabolic substrates, the main aim of this work is to present a broad overview of the current knowledge on the energy-producing metabolic pathways operating inside sperm mitochondria during capacitation in different mammalian species. Metabolism of glucose and of other energetic substrates, such as pyruvate, lactate, and citrate, is critically analyzed. Such knowledge, besides its obvious importance for basic science, could eventually translate into the development of novel strategies for treatment of male infertility, artificial reproduction, and sperm selection methods.

  9. Molecular aspects of mammalian fertilization

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Hector Serrano; Dolores Garcia-Suarez


    Mammalian fertilization is a highly regulated process, much of which are not clearly understood. Here we present some information in order to elaborate a working hypothesis for this process, beginning with the sperm modifications in the epidydimis up to sperm and egg plasmalemma interaction and fusion. We also discuss the still poorly understood capacitation process, the phenomenon of sperm chemo-attraction that brings the capacitated sperm to interact with the oocyte vestments and certain aspects of the acrosome reaction.

  10. Foreign Guests in Ancient Greece

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zora Žbontar


    Full Text Available Xenía was a special relationship between a foreign guest and his host in Ancient Greece. The ritual of hosting a foreigner included an exchange of objects, feasting, and the establishment of friendship between people from different social backgrounds. This relationship implied trust, loyalty, friendship, and mutual aid between the people involved. Goods and services were also exchanged without any form of payment. There were no formal laws governing xenía – it was based entirely on a moral appeal. Mutual appreciation between the host and the guest was established during the ritual, but the host did retain a certain level of superiority over the guest. Xenía was one of the most important institutions in Ancient Greece. It had a lot of features and obligations similar to kinship and marriage. In literary sources the word xénos varies in meaning from “enemy stranger”, “friendly stranger”, “foreigner”, “guest”, “host” to “ritual friend”, and it is often hard to tell which usage is appropriate in a given passage. The paper describes the emphasis on hospitality towards foreigners. It presents an example of a depiction indicating xenía is presented, as well as several objects which were traded during the ritual. The paper also addresses the importance of hospitality in Greek drama in general, especially with examples of violations of the hospitality code.

  11. [Ancient history of Indian pharmacy]. (United States)

    Okuda, Jun; Natsume, Yohko


    The study of the ancient history of Indian medicine has recently been revived due to the publication of polyglot translations. However, little is known of ancient Indian pharmacy. Archaeological evidence suggests the Indus people lived a settled life approximately in 2500 B.C. Their cities were enjoying the cleanest and most hygienic daily life with elaborate civic sanitation systems. The whole conception shows a remarkable concern for health. Then, the early Aryans invaded India about 1500 B.C. and the Vedic age started. The Rgveda texts contain the hymns for Soma and those for herbs. The term Ayurveda (i.e., science of life) is found in some old versions of both Ramāyana and Mahābhārata and in the Atharvaveda. Suśruta had the credit of making a breakthrough in the field of surgery. The Ayurveda, a work on internal medicine, gives the following transmission of sages: Brahmā-->Daksa-->Prajāpati-->Aśivinau-->Indra-->Caraka. On the other hand, the Suśruta-samhitā, which deals mainly with surgical medicine, explains it as follows; Indra-->Dhanvantari-->Suśruta Both Caraka and Suśruta were medical doctors as well as pharmacists, so they studied more than 1000 herbs thoroughly. The Ayurveda had been used by his devotees for medical purposes. It eventually spread over Asia with the advanced evolution of Buddhism.

  12. Attitudes Toward Deviant Sex in Ancient Mesopotamia (United States)

    Bullough, Vern L.


    The article concludes that the whole question of sexual life in ancient Mesopotamia is difficult to reconstruct and fraught with many uncertainties. Nevertheless, it seems certain that the ancient Mesopotamians had fewer prohibitions against sex than our own civilization, and regarded as acceptable many practices which later societies condemned.…

  13. Women--Sex Objects in Ancient Egypt. (United States)

    Mutimer, Brian T. P.

    Although it has been said that the women in Ancient Egypt enjoyed a reasonable state of social and professional equality with men, this paper presents an alternate theory--that women were second-class citizens whose physical prowess was secondary to their role as sex objects. It appears that men and women in Ancient Egypt often participated in the…

  14. The Idea of Ancient Greek Philosophy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    As the source of western philosophy, ancient Greek philosophy had a profound influence on western philosophy. Ancient philosophers were hard to reach a consensus on the existence of all the things in the world. They tried to grasp the profound understanding of the world, which is the clue of the history of philosophy.

  15. Mechanisms in ancient Chinese books with illustrations

    CERN Document Server

    Hsiao, Kuo-Hung


    This book presents a unique approach for studying mechanisms and machines with drawings that were depicted unclearly in ancient Chinese books. The historical, cultural and technical backgrounds of the mechanisms are explained, and various mechanisms described and illustrated in ancient books are introduced. By utilizing the idea for the conceptual design of modern mechanisms, all feasible designs of ancient mechanisms with uncertain members and joints that meet the technical standards of the subjects’ time periods are synthesized systematically. Ancient Chinese crossbows (the original crossbow and repeating crossbows), textile mechanisms (silk-reeling mechanism, spinning mechanisms, and looms), and many other artisan's tool mechanisms are used as illustrated examples.  Such an approach provides a logical method for the reconstruction designs of ancient mechanisms with uncertain structures. It also provides an innovative direction for researchers to further identify the original structures of mechanisms...

  16. Structural recognition of ancient Chinese ideographic characters

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Li Ning; Chen Dan


    Ancient Chinese characters, typically the ideographic characters on bones and bronze before Shang Dynasty (16th—11th century B.C.), are valuable culture legacy of history. However the recognition of Ancient Chinese characters has been the task of paleography experts for long. With the help of modern computer technique, everyone can expect to be able to recognize the characters and understand the ancient inscriptions. This research is aimed to help people recognize and understand those ancient Chinese characters by combining Chinese paleography theory and computer information processing technology. Based on the analysis of ancient character features, a method for structural character recognition is proposed. The important characteristics of strokes and basic components or radicals used in recognition are introduced in detail. A system was implemented based on above method to show the effectiveness of the method.

  17. Functional characterization of mammalian Wntless homolog in mammalian system. (United States)

    Wang, Li-Ting; Wang, Shih-Jong; Hsu, Shih-Hsien


    Wntless (GPR177) protein is a newly identified regulator of Wnt signals in Drosophila, but its cellular function in mammals is still unclear. In this study, we explored the expression pattern and potential cellular function of Wntless in mammalian cells. Wntless mRNA was expressed in many mouse tissues, including the spleen, lung, kidney, thymus, and stomach, and lower levels of expression were detected in the mouse brain and testis. Expression of Wntless protein analyzed by Western blot and immunohistochemical staining was only detected in the submucosa, muscle, ganglia, and nerve cells of murine large intestines. Both immunofluorescence staining and subcellular fraction extraction analysis revealed that endogenous Wntless protein was expressed predominantly in the cytoplasmic organelles with a morphologically dot-shaped distribution. Furthermore, overexpression of Wntless could be corrected by and may activate the nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) signaling pathway in cancer (HeLa) cells. These results suggest that Wntless plays a role in signaling regulation during the formation of cancer in addition to its role as a retromer protein in mammalian systems.

  18. [Anomalous pregnancies in ancient medicine]. (United States)

    Gazzaniga, Valentina


    In ancient Greek medicine female physiology is determined by a particular state of non-steady equilibrium, largely based on pregnancy and lactation, presented as the only balanced and healthy periods in women's life. Nonetheless, pregnancy can be also a pathological moment, in particular referring to specific alterations of its 'normal time' ('seven-months', 'eight-months' and 'ten-months' children). The article analyzes the well-known case of myle, an abnormal pregnancy developing in three and sometimes four years, non resolving in a normal delivery, but often in a dramatic haemorrhagic flux. The author compares Hippocratic and Aristotelic testimonies about myle and abnormal pregnancies with the evidence fournished by the historical-religious recent studies about Hera and her parthenogenetic, monstrous children.

  19. Detecting hybridization using ancient DNA. (United States)

    Schaefer, Nathan K; Shapiro, Beth; Green, Richard E


    It is well established that related species hybridize and that this can have varied but significant effects on speciation and environmental adaptation. It should therefore come as no surprise that hybridization is not limited to species that are alive today. In the last several decades, advances in technologies for recovering and sequencing DNA from fossil remains have enabled the assembly of high-coverage genome sequences for a growing diversity of organisms, including many that are extinct. Thanks to the development of new statistical approaches for detecting and quantifying admixture from genomic data, genomes from extinct populations have proven useful both in revealing previously unknown hybridization events and informing the study of hybridization between living organisms. Here, we review some of the key recent statistical innovations for detecting ancient hybridization using genomewide sequence data and discuss how these innovations have revised our understanding of human evolutionary history.

  20. [Being old in ancient Hellas]. (United States)

    van Hooff, A J


    There is room for a more balanced view of old age among the ancient Greeks than is furnished by De Beauvoir's la Vieillesse and other more or less one-sided publications. The old body was despised by the Greeks of classical times; especially walking with three legs (tripous) was stressed as a mark of old age. The Hippocratic writings show some interest in the infirmities of elderly people. Specific psychic and intellectual qualities were not attributed to senescence: old age brought out good and bad qualities of a person more sharply than before. The share of old people in the population cannot be established with any certainty, but there was always a group of men in their sixties who had specific tasks in society. Old age was not an autonomous theme in art, it was solely accidental. The position of the elderly was challenged occasionally in democratic Athens, but it was never undermined. Old people were never marginated in classical Greece.

  1. Ancient Acupuncture Literature on Apoplexy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XU Yi-zeng; BI Zhen; Xiao Yuan-chun


    This paper reviews twenty-eight Chinese medicine books with complete prescriptions prior to the Qing Dynasty, and analyzes the characteristics of acupoint selection and needling manipulations from the perspective of apoplectic symptoms. It is concluded that,in ancient times, apoplexy is often treated on the basis of its symptoms and a great number of acupoints are employed; hemiplegia is mainly treated by the acupoints of the Large Intestine Meridian and Gallbladder Meridian,with two key acupoints; coma is mainly treated by first-aid acupoints and qi-supplementing acupoints, with seven key acupoints; wry mouth and convulsion are mainly treated by the local acupoints; as for needling manipulations, moxibustion with moxa cones is principally used, while needling is less used.

  2. Ceramide signaling in mammalian epidermis. (United States)

    Uchida, Yoshikazu


    Ceramide, the backbone structure of all sphingolipids, as well as a minor component of cellular membranes, has a unique role in the skin, by forming the epidermal permeability barrier at the extracellular domains of the outermost layer of the skin, the stratum corneum, which is required for terrestrial mammalian survival. In contrast to the role of ceramide in forming the permeability barrier, the signaling roles of ceramide and its metabolites have not yet been recognized. Ceramide and/or its metabolites regulate proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis in epidermal keratinocytes. Recent studies have further demonstrated that a ceramide metabolite, sphingosine-1-phosphate, modulates innate immune function. Ceramide has already been applied to therapeutic approaches for treatment of eczema associated with attenuated epidermal permeability barrier function. Pharmacological modulation of ceramide and its metabolites' signaling can also be applied to cutaneous disease prevention and therapy. The author here describes the signaling roles of ceramide and its metabolites in mammalian cells and tissues, including the epidermis. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled The Important Role of Lipids in the Epidermis and their Role in the Formation and Maintenance of the Cutaneous Barrier. Guest Editors: Kenneth R. Feingold and Peter Elias.

  3. Enhancer evolution across 20 mammalian species

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villar, Diego; Berthelot, Camille; Aldridge, Sarah;


    The mammalian radiation has corresponded with rapid changes in noncoding regions of the genome, but we lack a comprehensive understanding of regulatory evolution in mammals. Here, we track the evolution of promoters and enhancers active in liver across 20 mammalian species from six diverse orders...... by profiling genomic enrichment of H3K27 acetylation and H3K4 trimethylation. We report that rapid evolution of enhancers is a universal feature of mammalian genomes. Most of the recently evolved enhancers arise from ancestral DNA exaptation, rather than lineage-specific expansions of repeat elements....... These results provide important insight into the functional genetics underpinning mammalian regulatory evolution....

  4. gargammel: a sequence simulator for ancient DNA. (United States)

    Renaud, Gabriel; Hanghøj, Kristian; Willerslev, Eske; Orlando, Ludovic


    Ancient DNA has emerged as a remarkable tool to infer the history of extinct species and past populations. However, many of its characteristics, such as extensive fragmentation, damage and contamination, can influence downstream analyses. To help investigators measure how these could impact their analyses in silico, we have developed gargammel, a package that simulates ancient DNA fragments given a set of known reference genomes. Our package simulates the entire molecular process from post-mortem DNA fragmentation and DNA damage to experimental sequencing errors, and reproduces most common bias observed in ancient DNA datasets.

  5. Mammalian skin evolution: a reevaluation. (United States)

    Maderson, P F A


    A 1972 model for the evolutionary origin of hair suggested a primary mechanoreceptor role improving behavioral thermoregulation contributed to the success of late Paleozoic mammal-like reptiles. An insulatory role appeared secondarily subsequent to protohair multiplication. That model is updated in light of new data on (a) palaeoecology of mammalian ancestors; (b) involvement of HRPs in keratinization; (c) lipogenic lamellar bodies that form the barrier to cutaneous water loss; and (d) growth factors involved in hair follicle embryogenesis and turnover. It is now proposed that multiplication of sensory protohairs caused by mutations in patterning genes initially protected the delicate barrier tissues and eventually produced the minimal morphology necessary for an insulatory pelage. The latter permitted Mesozoic mammals to occupy the nocturnal niche 'in the shadow of dinosaurs'. When the giant reptiles became extinct, mammals underwent rapid radiation and reemerged as the dominant terrestrial vertebrates.

  6. Genome regulation in mammalian cells. (United States)

    Puck, T T; Krystosek, A; Chan, D C


    A theory is presented proposing that genetic regulation in mammalian cells is at least a two-tiered effect; that one level of regulation involves the transition between gene exposure and sequestration; that normal differentiation requires a different spectrum of genes to be exposed in each separate state of differentiation; that the fiber systems of the cell cytoskeleton and the nuclear matrix together control the degree of gene exposure; that specific phosphorylation of these elements causes them to assume a different organizational network and to impose a different pattern of sequestration and exposure on the elements of the genome; that the varied gene phosphorylation mechanisms in the cell are integrated in this function; that attachment of this network system to specific parts of the chromosomes brings about sequestration or exposure of the genes in their neighborhood in a fashion similar to that observed when microtubule elements attach through the kinetochore to the centromeric DNA; that one function of repetitive sequences is to serve as elements for the final attachment of this fibrous network to the specific chromosomal loci; and that at least an important part of the calcium manifestation as a metabolic trigger of different differentiation states involves its acting as a binding agent to centers of electronegativity, in particular proteins and especially phosphorylated groups, so as to change the conformation of the fiber network that ultimately controls gene exposure in the mammalian cell. It would appear essential to determine what abnormal gene exposures and sequestrations are characteristic of each type of cancer; which agonists, if any, will bring about reverse transformation; and whether these considerations can be used in therapy.

  7. Aiding the Interpretation of Ancient Documents

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Roued-Cunliffe, Henriette

    How can Decision Support System (DSS) software aid the interpretation process involved in the reading of ancient documents? This paper discusses the development of a DSS prototype for the reading of ancient texts. In this context the term ‘ancient documents’ is used to describe mainly Greek...... and Latin texts and the term ‘scholars’ is used to describe readers of these documents (e.g. papyrologists, epigraphers, palaeographers). However, the results from this research can be applicable to many other texts ranging from Nordic runes to 18th Century love letters. In order to develop an appropriate...... tool it is important first to comprehend the interpretation process involved in reading ancient documents. This is not a linear process but rather a recursive process where the scholar moves between different levels of reading, such as ‘understanding the meaning of a character’ or ‘understanding...


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION : Schwannoma is a common benign tumour of nerve sheath. Degenerating type of schwannoma is called ancient schwannoma. Ancient schwannomas of scalp are rare and are often misdiagnosed as sebaceous cyst or dermoid cyst. CASE REPORT : We present a thirty two year old male presented with scalp swel ling of eight years duration. X - ray showed no intracranial extension. He underwent excision of the tumour and histopathology was reported as ancient schwannoma. DISCUSSION : Histopathologically , ancient schwannomas charecterised by cellular Antoni type A ar eas and less cellular Antoni type - B areas. 9 th , 7 th , 11 th , 5 th and 4 th cranial nerves are often affected and may be associated with multiple neuro fibramatosis (Von - Recklinghausen’s disease. Impact : Case is presented for its rarity and possible pre - operative misdiagnosis

  9. Ancient Magnetic Reversals: Clues to the Geodynamo. (United States)

    Hoffman, Kenneth A.


    Discusses the question posed by some that the earth's magnetic field may reverse. States that rocks magnetized by ancient fields may offer clues to the underlying reversal mechanism in the earth's core. (TW)

  10. No ancient DNA damage in Actinobacteria from the Neanderthal bone.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katarzyna Zaremba-Niedźwiedzka

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The Neanderthal genome was recently sequenced using DNA extracted from a 38,000-year-old fossil. At the start of the project, the fraction of mammalian and bacterial DNA in the sample was estimated to be <6% and 9%, respectively. Treatment with restriction enzymes prior to sequencing increased the relative proportion of mammalian DNA to 15%, but the large majority of sequences remain uncharacterized. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Our taxonomic profiling of 3.95 Gb of Neanderthal DNA isolated from the Vindija Neanderthal Vi33.16 fossil showed that 90% of about 50,000 rRNA gene sequence reads were of bacterial origin, of which Actinobacteria accounted for more than 75%. Actinobacteria also represented more than 80% of the PCR-amplified 16S rRNA gene sequences from a cave sediment sample taken from the same G layer as the Neanderthal bone. However, phylogenetic analyses did not identify any sediment clones that were closely related to the bone-derived sequences. We analysed the patterns of nucleotide differences in the individual sequence reads compared to the assembled consensus sequences of the rRNA gene sequences. The typical ancient nucleotide substitution pattern with a majority of C to T changes indicative of DNA damage was observed for the Neanderthal rRNA gene sequences, but not for the Streptomyces-like rRNA gene sequences. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our analyses suggest that the Actinobacteria, and especially members of the Streptomycetales, contribute the majority of sequences in the DNA extracted from the Neanderthal fossil Vi33.16. The bacterial DNA showed no signs of damage, and we hypothesize that it was derived from bacteria that have been enriched inside the bone. The bioinformatic approach used here paves the way for future studies of microbial compositions and patterns of DNA damage in bacteria from archaeological bones. Such studies can help identify targeted measures to increase the relative amount of endogenous DNA in the

  11. Surgical history of ancient China: Part 2. (United States)

    Fu, Louis


    In this second part of ancient Chinese surgical history, the practice of bone setting in China began around 3000 years ago. Throughout this period, significant progress was made, some highlights of which are cited. These methods, comparable with Western orthopaedic technique, are still being practised today. In conclusion, the possible reasons for the lack of advancement in operative surgery are discussed, within context of the cultural, social and religious background of ancient China.

  12. Radiocarbon dating of ancient Japanese documents

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oda, H. [Nagoya Univ., Center for Chronological Research, Nagoya, Aichi (Japan)


    History is a reconstruction of past human activity, evidence of which is remained in the form of documents or relics. For the reconstruction of historic period, the radiocarbon dating of ancient documents provides important information. Although radiocarbon age is converted into calendar age with the calibration curve, the calibrated radiocarbon age is still different from the historical age when the document was written. The difference is known as 'old wood effect' for wooden cultural property. The discrepancy becomes more serious problem for recent sample which requires more accurate age determination. Using Tandetron accelerator mass spectrometer at Nagoya University, we have measured radiocarbon ages of Japanese ancient documents, sutras and printed books written dates of which are clarified from the paleographic standpoint. The purpose is to clarify the relation between calibrated radiocarbon age and historical age of ancient Japanese document by AMS radiocarbon dating. This paper reports 23 radiocarbon ages of ancient Japanese documents, sutras and printed books. The calibrated radiocarbon ages are in good agreement with the corresponding historical ages. It was shown by radiocarbon dating of the ancient documents that Japanese paper has little gap by 'old wood effect'; accordingly, ancient Japanese paper is a suitable sample for radiocarbon dating of recent historic period. (author)

  13. Photodynamic Inactivation of Mammalian Viruses and Bacteriophages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liliana Costa


    Full Text Available Photodynamic inactivation (PDI has been used to inactivate microorganisms through the use of photosensitizers. The inactivation of mammalian viruses and bacteriophages by photosensitization has been applied with success since the first decades of the last century. Due to the fact that mammalian viruses are known to pose a threat to public health and that bacteriophages are frequently used as models of mammalian viruses, it is important to know and understand the mechanisms and photodynamic procedures involved in their photoinactivation. The aim of this review is to (i summarize the main approaches developed until now for the photodynamic inactivation of bacteriophages and mammalian viruses and, (ii discuss and compare the present state of the art of mammalian viruses PDI with phage photoinactivation, with special focus on the most relevant mechanisms, molecular targets and factors affecting the viral inactivation process.

  14. Photodynamic inactivation of mammalian viruses and bacteriophages. (United States)

    Costa, Liliana; Faustino, Maria Amparo F; Neves, Maria Graça P M S; Cunha, Angela; Almeida, Adelaide


    Photodynamic inactivation (PDI) has been used to inactivate microorganisms through the use of photosensitizers. The inactivation of mammalian viruses and bacteriophages by photosensitization has been applied with success since the first decades of the last century. Due to the fact that mammalian viruses are known to pose a threat to public health and that bacteriophages are frequently used as models of mammalian viruses, it is important to know and understand the mechanisms and photodynamic procedures involved in their photoinactivation. The aim of this review is to (i) summarize the main approaches developed until now for the photodynamic inactivation of bacteriophages and mammalian viruses and, (ii) discuss and compare the present state of the art of mammalian viruses PDI with phage photoinactivation, with special focus on the most relevant mechanisms, molecular targets and factors affecting the viral inactivation process.

  15. Mammalian N-acetylglutamate synthase. (United States)

    Morizono, Hiroki; Caldovic, Ljubica; Shi, Dashuang; Tuchman, Mendel


    N-Acetylglutamate synthase (NAGS, E.C. is a mitochondrial enzyme that catalyzes the formation of N-acetylglutamate (NAG), an essential allosteric activator of carbamylphosphate synthetase I (CPSI). The mouse and human NAGS genes have been identified based on similarity to regions of NAGS from Neurospora crassa and cloned from liver cDNA libraries. These genes were shown to complement an argA- (NAGS) deficient Escherichia coli strain, and enzymatic activity of the proteins was confirmed by a new stable isotope dilution assay. The deduced amino acid sequence of mammalian NAGS contains a putative mitochondrial-targeting signal at the N-terminus. The mouse NAGS preprotein was overexpressed in insect cells to determine post-translational modifications and two processed proteins with different N-terminal truncations have been identified. Sequence analysis using a hidden Markov model suggests that the vertebrate NAGS protein contains domains with a carbamate kinase fold and an acyl-CoA N-acyltransferase fold, and protein crystallization experiments are currently underway. Inherited NAGS deficiency results in hyperammonemia, presumably due to the loss of CPSI activity. We, and others, have recently identified mutations in families with neonatal and late-onset NAGS deficiency and the identification of the gene has now made carrier testing and prenatal diagnosis feasible. A structural analog of NAG, carbamylglutamate, has been shown to bind and activate CPSI, and several patients have been reported to respond favorably to this drug (Carbaglu).

  16. Chemosignals, hormones and mammalian reproduction. (United States)

    Petrulis, Aras


    Many mammalian species use chemosignals to coordinate reproduction by altering the physiology and behavior of both sexes. Chemosignals prime reproductive physiology so that individuals become sexually mature and active at times when mating is most probable and suppress it when it is not. Once in reproductive condition, odors produced and deposited by both males and females are used to find and select individuals for mating. The production, dissemination and appropriate responses to these cues are modulated heavily by organizational and activational effects of gonadal sex steroids and thereby intrinsically link chemical communication to the broader reproductive context. Many compounds have been identified as "pheromones" but very few have met the expectations of that term: a unitary, species-typical substance that is both necessary and sufficient for an experience-independent behavioral or physiological response. In contrast, most responses to chemosignals are dependent or heavily modulated by experience, either in adulthood or during development. Mechanistically, chemosignals are perceived by both main and accessory (vomeronasal) olfactory systems with the importance of each system tied strongly to the nature of the stimulus rather than to the response. In the central nervous system, the vast majority of responses to chemosignals are mediated by cortical and medial amygdala connections with hypothalamic and other forebrain structures. Despite the importance of chemosignals in mammals, many details of chemical communication differ even among closely related species and defy clear categorization. Although generating much research and public interest, strong evidence for the existence of a robust chemical communication among humans is lacking.

  17. Baculoviruses as Vectors in Mammalian Cells

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chang-yong LIANG; Xin-wen CHEN


    The Baculoviridae are a large family of enveloped DNA viruses exclusively pathogenic to arthropods. Baculoviruses have been extensively used in insect cell-based recombinant protein expression system and as biological pesticides. They have been deomostrated to be safe to mammals, birds and fish. Recently, baculoviruses has been shown to transduce different mammalian cells in spite of the fact that they cannot replicate in mammalian cells (11, 73, 76). This has resulted in the development of baculoviruses as mammalian expression systems and even as vestors for gene therapy.

  18. Evidence for Ancient Mesoamerican Earthquakes (United States)

    Kovach, R. L.; Garcia, B.


    Evidence for past earthquake damage at Mesoamerican ruins is often overlooked because of the invasive effects of tropical vegetation and is usually not considered as a casual factor when restoration and reconstruction of many archaeological sites are undertaken. Yet the proximity of many ruins to zones of seismic activity would argue otherwise. Clues as to the types of damage which should be soughtwere offered in September 1999 when the M = 7.5 Oaxaca earthquake struck the ruins of Monte Alban, Mexico, where archaeological renovations were underway. More than 20 structures were damaged, 5 of them seriously. Damage features noted were walls out of plumb, fractures in walls, floors, basal platforms and tableros, toppling of columns, and deformation, settling and tumbling of walls. A Modified Mercalli Intensity of VII (ground accelerations 18-34 %b) occurred at the site. Within the diffuse landward extension of the Caribbean plate boundary zone M = 7+ earthquakes occur with repeat times of hundreds of years arguing that many Maya sites were subjected to earthquakes. Damage to re-erected and reinforced stelae, walls, and buildings were witnessed at Quirigua, Guatemala, during an expedition underway when then 1976 M = 7.5 Guatemala earthquake on the Motagua fault struck. Excavations also revealed evidence (domestic pttery vessels and skeleton of a child crushed under fallen walls) of an ancient earthquake occurring about the teim of the demise and abandonment of Quirigua in the late 9th century. Striking evidence for sudden earthquake building collapse at the end of the Mayan Classic Period ~A.D. 889 was found at Benque Viejo (Xunantunich), Belize, located 210 north of Quirigua. It is argued that a M = 7.5 to 7.9 earthquake at the end of the Maya Classic period centered in the vicinity of the Chixoy-Polochic and Motagua fault zones cound have produced the contemporaneous earthquake damage to the above sites. As a consequences this earthquake may have accelerated the

  19. Genetic diversity among ancient Nordic populations. (United States)

    Melchior, Linea; Lynnerup, Niels; Siegismund, Hans R; Kivisild, Toomas; Dissing, Jørgen


    Using established criteria for work with fossil DNA we have analysed mitochondrial DNA from 92 individuals from 18 locations in Denmark ranging in time from the Mesolithic to the Medieval Age. Unequivocal assignment of mtDNA haplotypes was possible for 56 of the ancient individuals; however, the success rate varied substantially between sites; the highest rates were obtained with untouched, freshly excavated material, whereas heavy handling, archeological preservation and storage for many years influenced the ability to obtain authentic endogenic DNA. While the nucleotide diversity at two locations was similar to that among extant Danes, the diversity at four sites was considerably higher. This supports previous observations for ancient Britons. The overall occurrence of haplogroups did not deviate from extant Scandinavians, however, haplogroup I was significantly more frequent among the ancient Danes (average 13%) than among extant Danes and Scandinavians (approximately 2.5%) as well as among other ancient population samples reported. Haplogroup I could therefore have been an ancient Southern Scandinavian type "diluted" by later immigration events. Interestingly, the two Neolithic samples (4,200 YBP, Bell Beaker culture) that were typed were haplogroup U4 and U5a, respectively, and the single Bronze Age sample (3,300-3,500 YBP) was haplogroup U4. These two haplogroups have been associated with the Mesolithic populations of Central and Northern Europe. Therefore, at least for Southern Scandinavia, our findings do not support a possible replacement of a haplogroup U dominated hunter-gatherer population by a more haplogroup diverse Neolithic Culture.

  20. A Syntenic Region Conserved from Fish to Mammalian X Chromosome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guijun Guan


    Full Text Available Sex chromosomes bearing the sex-determining gene initiate development along the male or female pathway, no matter which sex is determined by XY male or ZW female heterogamety. Sex chromosomes originate from ancient autosomes but evolved rapidly after the acquisition of sex-determining factors which are highly divergent between species. In the heterogametic male system (XY system, the X chromosome is relatively evolutionary silent and maintains most of its ancestral genes, in contrast to its Y counterpart that has evolved rapidly and degenerated. Sex in a teleost fish, the Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus, is determined genetically via an XY system, in which an unpaired region is present in the largest chromosome pair. We defined the differences in DNA contents present in this chromosome with a two-color comparative genomic hybridization (CGH and the random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD approach in XY males. We further identified a syntenic segment within this region that is well conserved in several teleosts. Through comparative genome analysis, this syntenic segment was also shown to be present in mammalian X chromosomes, suggesting a common ancestral origin of vertebrate sex chromosomes.

  1. Enzymology of Mammalian DNA Methyltransferases. (United States)

    Jurkowska, Renata Z; Jeltsch, Albert


    DNA methylation is currently one of the hottest topics in basic and biomedical research. Despite tremendous progress in understanding the structures and biochemical properties of the mammalian DNA nucleotide methyltransferases (DNMTs), principles of their regulation in cells have only begun to be uncovered. In mammals, DNA methylation is introduced by the DNMT1, DNMT3A, and DNMT3B enzymes, which are all large multi-domain proteins. These enzymes contain a catalytic C-terminal domain with a characteristic cytosine-C5 methyltransferase fold and an N-terminal part with different domains that interacts with other proteins and chromatin and is involved in targeting and regulation of the DNMTs. The subnuclear localization of the DNMT enzymes plays an important role in their biological function: DNMT1 is localized to replicating DNA via interaction with PCNA and UHRF1. DNMT3 enzymes bind to heterochromatin via protein multimerization and are targeted to chromatin by their ADD and PWWP domains. Recently, a novel regulatory mechanism has been discovered in DNMTs, as latest structural and functional data demonstrated that the catalytic activities of all three enzymes are under tight allosteric control of their N-terminal domains having autoinhibitory functions. This mechanism provides numerous possibilities for the precise regulation of the methyltransferases via controlling the binding and release of autoinhibitory domains by protein factors, noncoding RNAs, or by posttranslational modifications of the DNMTs. In this chapter, we summarize key enzymatic properties of DNMTs, including their specificity and processivity, and afterward we focus on the regulation of their activity and targeting via allosteric processes, protein interactors, and posttranslational modifications.

  2. Twins in Ancient Greece: a synopsis. (United States)

    Malamitsi-Puchner, Ariadne


    This brief outline associates twins with several aspects of life in Ancient Greece. In Greek mythology twins caused ambivalent reactions and were believed to have ambivalent feelings for each other. Very often, they were viewed as the representatives of the dualistic nature of the universe. Heteropaternal superfecundation, which dominates in ancient myths, explains on one hand, the god-like qualities and, on the other hand, the mortal nature of many twins. An assumption is presented that legends referring to twins might reflect the territorial expansions of Ancient Greeks in Northern Mediterranean, around the Black Sea, in Asia Minor, as well as North East Africa. In conclusion, in Greek antiquity, twins have been used as transitional figures between myth and reality.

  3. Genetic diversity among ancient Nordic populations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Melchior, Linea Cecilie; Lynnerup, Niels; Siegismund, Hans Redlef


    the ancient Danes (average 13%) than among extant Danes and Scandinavians ( approximately 2.5%) as well as among other ancient population samples reported. Haplogroup I could therefore have been an ancient Southern Scandinavian type "diluted" by later immigration events. Interestingly, the two Neolithic...... samples (4,200 YBP, Bell Beaker culture) that were typed were haplogroup U4 and U5a, respectively, and the single Bronze Age sample (3,300-3,500 YBP) was haplogroup U4. These two haplogroups have been associated with the Mesolithic populations of Central and Northern Europe. Therefore, at least...... for Southern Scandinavia, our findings do not support a possible replacement of a haplogroup U dominated hunter-gatherer population by a more haplogroup diverse Neolithic Culture....

  4. The Vindolanda Tablets and the Ancient Economy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Evers, Kasper Grønlund

    , a model is outlined which takes into account the different economic behaviours revealed by the tablets and attempts to fit them together into one coherent, economic system, whilst also relating the activities to questions of scale in the ancient economy; moreover, the conclusions drawn in the study......, the aim is to investigate how best to comprehend the economic system attested at Vindolanda and to consider the wider implications for studies of the ancient economy in general. This is accomplished by a three-step approach: first, the nature of the Vindolandan evidence is assessed, and the state...... of research on both studies of the ancient economy and the economy of early Roman Britain is accounted for, so as to highlight the value of the Vindolanda Tablets and lay the ground for the interpretations which follow. Secondly, the economic activities attested by the tablets are analysed in terms of market...

  5. Palaeoparasitology - Human Parasites in Ancient Material. (United States)

    Araújo, Adauto; Reinhard, Karl; Ferreira, Luiz Fernando


    Parasite finds in ancient material launched a new field of science: palaeoparasitology. Ever since the pioneering studies, parasites were identified in archaeological and palaeontological remains, some preserved for millions of years by fossilization. However, the palaeoparasitological record consists mainly of parasites found specifically in human archaeological material, preserved in ancient occupation sites, from prehistory until closer to 2015. The results include some helminth intestinal parasites still commonly found in 2015, such as Ascaris lumbricoides, Trichuris trichiura and hookworms, besides others such as Amoebidae and Giardia intestinalis, as well as viruses, bacteria, fungi and arthropods. These parasites as a whole provide important data on health, diet, climate and living conditions among ancient populations. This chapter describes the principal findings and their importance for knowledge on the origin and dispersal of infectious diseases.

  6. The biochemistry of ancient DNA in bone. (United States)

    Tuross, N


    The amount of DNA in ancient bone was determined by ethidium bromide staining after the removal of the potent Taq inhibitor, fulvic acid. A complete decalcification and a perfusion protocol were used to recover DNA from bone. A variety of purification techniques including molecular sieve, hydroxyapatite binding and 'Magic' preparations yielded DNA that spanned from 3.4 micrograms/g of bone to below detectable limits. Fulvic acid was shown to interfere with the quantification of DNA derived from ancient human skeletal material one hundred to over seven thousand years old. Scanning UV in the 300 to 230 nm range is a simple and sensitive technique for documenting fulvic acid contamination in ancient bone extracts.

  7. Mammalian synthetic biology: emerging medical applications. (United States)

    Kis, Zoltán; Pereira, Hugo Sant'Ana; Homma, Takayuki; Pedrigi, Ryan M; Krams, Rob


    In this review, we discuss new emerging medical applications of the rapidly evolving field of mammalian synthetic biology. We start with simple mammalian synthetic biological components and move towards more complex and therapy-oriented gene circuits. A comprehensive list of ON-OFF switches, categorized into transcriptional, post-transcriptional, translational and post-translational, is presented in the first sections. Subsequently, Boolean logic gates, synthetic mammalian oscillators and toggle switches will be described. Several synthetic gene networks are further reviewed in the medical applications section, including cancer therapy gene circuits, immuno-regulatory networks, among others. The final sections focus on the applicability of synthetic gene networks to drug discovery, drug delivery, receptor-activating gene circuits and mammalian biomanufacturing processes.

  8. Bats and Rodents Shape Mammalian Retroviral Phylogeny. (United States)

    Cui, Jie; Tachedjian, Gilda; Wang, Lin-Fa


    Endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) represent past retroviral infections and accordingly can provide an ideal framework to infer virus-host interaction over their evolutionary history. In this study, we target high quality Pol sequences from 7,994 Class I and 8,119 Class II ERVs from 69 mammalian genomes and surprisingly find that retroviruses harbored by bats and rodents combined occupy the major phylogenetic diversity of both classes. By analyzing transmission patterns of 30 well-defined ERV clades, we corroborate the previously published observation that rodents are more competent as originators of mammalian retroviruses and reveal that bats are more capable of receiving retroviruses from non-bat mammalian origins. The powerful retroviral hosting ability of bats is further supported by a detailed analysis revealing that the novel bat gammaretrovirus, Rhinolophus ferrumequinum retrovirus, likely originated from tree shrews. Taken together, this study advances our understanding of host-shaped mammalian retroviral evolution in general.

  9. Defining viability in mammalian cell cultures


    Browne, Susan M.; Al-Rubeai, Mohamed


    Abstract A large number of assays are available to monitor viability in mammalian cell cultures with most defining loss of viability as a loss of plasma membrane integrity, a characteristic of necrotic cell death. However, the majority of cultured cells die by apoptosis and early apoptotic cells, although non-viable, maintain an intact plasma membrane and are thus ignored. Here we measure the viability of cultures of a number of common mammalian cell lines by assays that measure me...

  10. Hacking the genetic code of mammalian cells. (United States)

    Schwarzer, Dirk


    A genetic shuttle: The highlighted article, which was recently published by Schultz, Geierstanger and co-workers, describes a straightforward scheme for enlarging the genetic code of mammalian cells. An orthogonal tRNA/aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase pair specific for a new amino acid can be evolved in E. coli and subsequently transferred into mammalian cells. The feasibility of this approach was demonstrated by adding a photocaged lysine derivative to the genetic repertoire of a human cell line.

  11. Pectus excavatum in mummies from ancient Egypt. (United States)

    Kwiecinski, Jakub


    Pectus excavatum is one of the common congenital anomalies, yet there seems to be a suspicious absence of any cases or descriptions of this deformity from antiquity. This could represent a real change in disease prevalence but is more likely just due to an inadequate reporting in medico-historical literature. The current study reviews reports of computed tomography (CT) scans of 217 ancient Egyptian mummies, revealing 3 presumed cases of this deformity. Therefore, pectus excavatum was in fact present already in ancient times, with prevalence roughly similar to the modern one.

  12. Symmetries in Images on Ancient Seals

    CERN Document Server

    Sparavigna, Amelia


    In this paper, we discuss the presence of symmetries in images engraved on ancient seals, in particular on stamp seals. Mainly used to secure the containers from tampering and for owner's identification, these objects appeared during the 5th millennium BC in Mesopotamia. Usually the seals were engraved with simple images, suitable to communicate an immediate information. Rotational symmetries are already displayed by the most ancient stamp seals, whose images reach a quasi-perfect symmetry in their small circular or ovoid spaces. Bilateral symmetries are quite common in Egyptian scarab seals.

  13. Automatic indexing and reformulation of ancient dictionaries


    Belaïd, Abdel; Turcan, Isabelle; Pierrel, Jean-Marie; Belaïd, Yolande; Rangoni, Yves; Hadjamar, Hassen


    International audience; This paper is related to automatic indexing and reformu-lation of ancient dictionaries. The objective is to make easy the access to ancient printed documents from XVI to XIX century for a diversified public (historians, scien-tists, librarians, etc.). Since the facsimile mode is insuffi-cient, the aim is to look further for the use of the index-ing based on the formal structure representative of some contents in order to optimize their exploration. Starting from a firs...

  14. Mythological Emblem Glyphs of Ancient Maya Kings

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Helmke, Christophe


    Heinrich Berlin’s identification of Emblem Glyphs in 1958 has rightly been hailed as one of the major breakthroughs in the decipherment of ancient Maya writing. Although their exact function and meaning was unclear at the time, these are now recognized to serve as exalted regal titles that incorp......Heinrich Berlin’s identification of Emblem Glyphs in 1958 has rightly been hailed as one of the major breakthroughs in the decipherment of ancient Maya writing. Although their exact function and meaning was unclear at the time, these are now recognized to serve as exalted regal titles...

  15. A Modern Take on an Ancient Master

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    A new English translation of The Analects gives a fresh perspective on Confucius and his philosophy by Zan Jifang Confucius(551-491 B.C.) is generally viewed as ancient China’s foremost thinker.His philosophy is probably best catalogued in The Analects,a record of the sage’s wisdom compiled after his death.This Confucian classic provides a shortcut to understanding Chinese culture. A new English edition of the ancient classic(published by the Foreign Languages Press)

  16. Evolution of medical education in ancient Greece

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Emmanouil Pikoulis; Pavlos Msaouel; Efthimios D Avgerinos; Sofia Anagnostopoulou; Christos Tsigris


    @@ The study of ancient Greece is essential for the proper understanding of the evolution of modem Western medicine.An important innovation of classical Greek medicine was the development of a body of medical theory associated with natural philosophy,i.e.a strong secular tradition of free enquiry,or what would now be called "science" (Επιστημη).Medical education rests upon the ancient Greek foundations and its history remains a fascinating topic for modem physicians and medical teachers.

  17. Records of solar eclipse observations in ancient China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Like ancient people at other places of the world, the ancient Chinese lived in awe of the Sun. As they felt solar eclipses extremely significant events, they closely observed the occurrence of solar eclipse. Ancient astronomers further realized very early that solar eclipses were one of the important astronomical phenomena to revise and improve the ancient calendar. Interestingly, ancient emperors regarded solar eclipses as warnings from heaven that might affect the stability of their throne. Consequently, observing and recording solar eclipses became official, which dated far back to ancient China when numerous relevant descriptions were recorded in historical books. These records contribute substantially to China as an ancient civilization, as well as to the research of the long-term variation of the rotation rate of the Earth during >2000 years before the 17th century. This paper briefly reviews the perception, observations and recording of solar eclipses by ancient Chinese astronomers.

  18. Records of solar eclipse observations in ancient China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    HAN YanBen; QIAO OiYuan


    Like ancient people at other places of the world, the ancient Chinese lived in awe of the Sun. As they felt solar eclipses extremely significant events, they closely observed the occurrence of solar eclipse. Ancient astronomers further realized very early that solar eclipses were one of the important astro-nomical phenomena to revise and improve the ancient calendar. Interestingly, ancient emperors re-garded solar eclipses as warnings from heaven that might affect the stability of their throne. Conse-quently, observing and recording solar eclipses became official, which dated far back to ancient China when numerous relevant descriptions were recorded in historical books. These records contribute substantially to China as an ancient civilization, as well as to the research of the long-term variation of the rotation rate of the Earth during >2000 years before the 17th century. This paper briefly reviews the perception, observations and recording of solar eclipses by ancient Chinese astronomers.

  19. Dialogue Genre Texts in Ancient Greek Prose: Linguostylistic Aspect


    Gita Bērziņa


    Dialogue Genre Texts in Ancient Greek Prose: Linguostylistic Aspect Doctoral thesis deals with the study of essential linguistic features of the Ancient Greek dialogue as an important ancient prose genre. The goal of the thesis is to disclose the specific linguistic characteristics of the genre of Ancient Greek dialogue on the basis of comparative analysis of the linguistic structure (on all levels as well as in style) of the texts of three most prominent authors (Plato, Xenoph...

  20. Fire usage and ancient hominin detoxification genes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aarts, Jac M.M.J.G.; Alink, Gerrit M.; Scherjon, Fulco; MacDonald, Katharine; Smith, Alison C.; Nijveen, Harm; Roebroeks, Wil


    Studies of the defence capacity of ancient hominins against toxic substances may contribute importantly to the reconstruction of their niche, including their diets and use of fire. Fire usage implies frequent exposure to hazardous compounds from smoke and heated food, known to affect general heal

  1. Discovering the Ancient Maya from Space (United States)

    Sever, T. L.


    The Pet6n region of northern Guatemala contains some of the most significant Mayan archeological sites in Latin America. It was in this region that the Maya civilization began, flourished, and abruptly disappeared. Remote sensing technology is helping to locate and map ancient Maya sites that are threatened today by accelerating deforestation and looting. Thematic Mapper, IKONOS, and QuickBird satellite, and airborne STAR-3i and AIRSAR radar data, combined with Global Positioning System (GPS) technology, are successfully detecting ancient Maya features such as sites, roadways, canals, and water reservoirs. Satellite imagery is also being used to map the bajos, which are seasonally flooded swamps that cover over 40% of the land surface. Through the use of various airborne and satellite sensor systems we have been able to detect and map ancient causeways, temples, reservoirs, and land forms, and locate these features on the ground through GPS technology. Recently, we have discovered that there is a strong relationship between a tropical forest vegetation signature in satellite imagery and the location of archeological sites. We believe that the use of limestone and lime plasters in ancient Maya construction affects the moisture, nutrition, and plant species of the surface vegetation. We have mapped these vegetation signatures in the imagery and verified through field survey that they are indicative of archeological sites. Through the use of remote sensing and GIS technology it is possible to identify unrecorded archeological features in a dense tropical forest environment and monitor these cultural features for their protection.

  2. Ancient Human Parasites in Ethnic Chinese Populations (United States)

    Yeh, Hui-Yuan; Mitchell, Piers D.


    Whilst archaeological evidence for many aspects of life in ancient China is well studied, there has been much less interest in ancient infectious diseases, such as intestinal parasites in past Chinese populations. Here, we bring together evidence from mummies, ancient latrines, and pelvic soil from burials, dating from the Neolithic Period to the Qing Dynasty, in order to better understand the health of the past inhabitants of China and the diseases endemic in the region. Seven species of intestinal parasite have been identified, namely roundworm, whipworm, Chinese liver fluke, oriental schistosome, pinworm, Taenia sp. tapeworm, and the intestinal fluke Fasciolopsis buski. It was found that in the past, roundworm, whipworm, and Chinese liver fluke appear to have been much more common than the other species. While roundworm and whipworm remained common into the late 20th century, Chinese liver fluke seems to have undergone a marked decline in its prevalence over time. The iconic transport route known as the Silk Road has been shown to have acted as a vector for the transmission of ancient diseases, highlighted by the discovery of Chinese liver fluke in a 2,000 year-old relay station in northwest China, 1,500 km outside its endemic range. PMID:27853113

  3. Ancient bronze disks, decorations and calendars

    CERN Document Server

    Sparavigna, Amelia Carolina


    Recently, it was published that some ancient bronze disks could had been calendars, that is, that their decorations had this function. Here I am discussing an example, the disk of the Trundholm Sun Chariot, proposing a new interpretation of it, giving a calendar of 360 days. Some geometric diagrams concerning the decoration layout are also proposed.

  4. Ancient DNA analysis of dental calculus. (United States)

    Weyrich, Laura S; Dobney, Keith; Cooper, Alan


    Dental calculus (calcified tartar or plaque) is today widespread on modern human teeth around the world. A combination of soft starchy foods, changing acidity of the oral environment, genetic pre-disposition, and the absence of dental hygiene all lead to the build-up of microorganisms and food debris on the tooth crown, which eventually calcifies through a complex process of mineralisation. Millions of oral microbes are trapped and preserved within this mineralised matrix, including pathogens associated with the oral cavity and airways, masticated food debris, and other types of extraneous particles that enter the mouth. As a result, archaeologists and anthropologists are increasingly using ancient human dental calculus to explore broad aspects of past human diet and health. Most recently, high-throughput DNA sequencing of ancient dental calculus has provided valuable insights into the evolution of the oral microbiome and shed new light on the impacts of some of the major biocultural transitions on human health throughout history and prehistory. Here, we provide a brief historical overview of archaeological dental calculus research, and discuss the current approaches to ancient DNA sampling and sequencing. Novel applications of ancient DNA from dental calculus are discussed, highlighting the considerable scope of this new research field for evolutionary biology and modern medicine.

  5. Tapping Ancient Roots: Plaited Paper Baskets (United States)

    Patrick, Jane


    With ancient roots, basket making has been practiced since the earliest civilizations, and according to textile experts, probably pre-dates pottery. This is partly conjecture since few baskets remain. It is through evidence found in clay impressions that the earliest baskets reveal themselves. Basically, basketry construction is like flat weaving.…

  6. Ancient Pyramids Help Students Learn Math Concepts (United States)

    Smith, Courtney D.; Stump, Amanda M.; Lazaros, Edward J.


    This article presents an activity that allows students to use mathematics and critical-thinking skills to emulate processes used by the ancient Egyptians to prepare the site for the Pyramids of Giza. To accomplish this, they use three different methods. First, they create a square using only simple technological tools that were available to the…

  7. Defining Astrology in Ancient and Classical History (United States)

    Campion, Nicholas


    Astrology in the ancient and classical worlds can be partly defined by its role, and partly by the way in which scholars spoke about it. The problem is complicated by the fact that the word is Greek - it has no Babylonian or Egyptian cognates - and even in Greece it was interchangeable with its cousin, 'astronomy'. Yet if we are to understand the role of the sky, stars and planets in culture, debates about the nature of ancient astrology, by both classical and modern scholars, must be taken into account. This talk will consider modern scholars' typologies of ancient astrology, together with ancient debates from Cicero in the 1st century BC, to Plotinus (204/5-270 AD) and Isidore of Seville (c. 560 - 4 April 636). It will consider the implications for our understanding of astronomy's role in culture, and conclude that in the classical period astrology may be best understood through its diversity and allegiance to competing philosophies, and that its functions were therefore similarly varied.

  8. Ancient whole grain gluten-free flatbreads (United States)

    The USDA food guide recommends that at least ½ of all the grains eaten should be whole grains. The FDA allows food Health Claim labels for food containing 51% whole gains and 11 g of dietary fiber. This is the only report demonstrating innovative ancient whole grain gluten-free (no yeast or chemical...

  9. An ancient musical instrument returns home

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    After 300 years abroad, an ancient Chinese musical instrument returned home with its face lifted and a Japanese name. Originally a one-stringed plucker, the Daisho Modo now features a whole family of electric high-, medium-pitched and bass instruments. With crisp tone and wide range, the Daisho Modo is

  10. Fossil avian eggshell preserves ancient DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Oskam, Charlotte L; Haile, James Seymour; McLay, Emma


    Owing to exceptional biomolecule preservation, fossil avian eggshell has been used extensively in geochronology and palaeodietary studies. Here, we show, to our knowledge, for the first time that fossil eggshell is a previously unrecognized source of ancient DNA (aDNA). We describe the successful...

  11. The Study of Women in Ancient Society. (United States)

    Moscovich, M. James


    Presents ideas for teaching about the roles of women in ancient Greek and Roman societies for undergraduate history and sociology classes. The discussion covers the roots of misogyny in Western culture, parallels between mythologies and sociocultural patterns, and the legal status of women in antiquity. (AM)

  12. [Ancient tattooing from today's point of view]. (United States)

    Zimmermann, R; Zimmermann, K


    Both literary and arachaeological evidence indicates that, up to now, ancient tattoos can be traced with certainty in painting only among Thracians. A comparison with modern tattoos reveals differences of motivation and motifs, whereas localization, technique, and removal show similarities. The illustrations demonstrate some tattoos typical for Thracians on Greek vases.

  13. Case report 872. "Ancient" schwannoma (degenerated neurilemoma). (United States)

    Schultz, E; Sapan, M R; McHeffey-Atkinson, B; Naidich, J B; Arlen, M


    A case of an ancient schwannoma was presented. The rare occurrence of this tumor has resulted in only a few reported cases with descriptions of its features on imaging. Our patient's tumor, like one previously reported case, demonstrated calcification on the plain film - a finding not associated with other histologic types of schwannomas. Angiography revealed the tumor to be hypervascular. Evaluation by MRI demonstrated a lobulated, encapsulated soft tissue mass containing several cystic areas that corresponded histologically to areas of necrosis. Hypertrophied blood vessels were seen in the periphery of the tumoral mass. Too few ancient schwannomas have been reported to conclude whether or not radiographic evidence of soft tissue calcification is characteristic of this histologically distinctive subtype of schwannoma. However, since calcification is seen histologically as part of the degenerating process, its presence on plain films could be a feature of this tumor. Furthermore, the presence of cystic areas on MRI is not surprising given the pathological changes that occur in this tumor. We suggest that a diagnosis of ancient schwannoma be considered when a patient presents with a hypervascular soft tissue mass containing amorphous calcification on plain films and cystic areas on MRI. Despite the nonspecificity of these imaging findings, this point is relevant because each of these features suggests the presence of a malignant mass. Awareness of the possibility of a benign ancient schwannoma could obviate unnecessary radical surgery.

  14. Communication Arts in the Ancient World. (United States)

    Havelock, Eric A., Ed.; Hershbell, Jackson P., Ed.

    Intended for both classicists and nonclassicists, this volume explores the beginnings of literacy in ancient Greece and Rome and examines the effects of written communication on these cultures. The nine articles, written by classical scholars and educators in the field of communication, discuss the following: the superiority of the alphabet over…

  15. Paragons of Education in Ancient Times

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    MOTHERS contributed greatly to children’s education in ancient China long before schools took shape. Behind many prominent figures lay greatmothers whose personal example and verbal instruction benefited their children throughout life. There is an old sayingabout the "stern father and compassionate mother."However, you will always

  16. The Roots of Science in Ancient China. (United States)

    Fisher, Arthur


    A 45-year-old research project (culminating in the multivolume "Science and Civilization in China") is examining major scientific innovations in ancient China and attempting to explain why, although the Chinese gained a technological edge in the past, they did not make the forward leap into modern science. (JN)

  17. The Challenges of Qualitatively Coding Ancient Texts (United States)

    Slingerland, Edward; Chudek, Maciej


    We respond to several important and valid concerns about our study ("The Prevalence of Folk Dualism in Early China," "Cognitive Science" 35: 997-1007) by Klein and Klein, defending our interpretation of our data. We also argue that, despite the undeniable challenges involved in qualitatively coding texts from ancient cultures, the standard tools…

  18. Mitochondrial phylogenomics of modern and ancient equids

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vilstrup, Julia T; Seguin-Orlando, Andaine; Stiller, Mathias;


    to calibrate reliable molecular clocks. Additional mitochondrial genome sequence data, including radiocarbon dated ancient equids, will be required before revisiting the exact timing of the lineage radiation leading up to modern equids, which for now were found to have possibly shared a common ancestor as far...

  19. Genomic correlates of atherosclerosis in ancient humans. (United States)

    Zink, Albert; Wann, L Samuel; Thompson, Randall C; Keller, Andreas; Maixner, Frank; Allam, Adel H; Finch, Caleb E; Frohlich, Bruno; Kaplan, Hillard; Lombardi, Guido P; Sutherland, M Linda; Sutherland, James D; Watson, Lucia; Cox, Samantha L; Miyamoto, Michael I; Narula, Jagat; Stewart, Alexandre F R; Thomas, Gregory S; Krause, Johannes


    Paleogenetics offers a unique opportunity to study human evolution, population dynamics, and disease evolution in situ. Although histologic and computed x-ray tomographic investigations of ancient mummies have clearly shown that atherosclerosis has been present in humans for more than 5,000 years, limited data are available on the presence of genetic predisposition for cardiovascular disease in ancient human populations. In a previous whole-genome study of the Tyrolean Iceman, a 5,300-year-old glacier mummy from the Alps, an increased risk for coronary heart disease was detected. The Iceman's genome revealed several single nucleotide polymorphisms that are linked with cardiovascular disease in genome-wide association studies. Future genetic studies of ancient humans from various geographic origins and time periods have the potential to provide more insights into the presence and possible changes of genetic risk factors in our ancestors. The study of ancient humans and a better understanding of the interaction between environmental and genetic influences on the development of heart diseases may lead to a more effective prevention and treatment of the most common cause of death in the modern world.

  20. The Ancient stellar population of Leo A.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Saha, Abhijit; Fiorentino, Giuliana; Tolstoy, Eline; Cole, Andrew


    The primary goal of our proposal is the characterisation of the oldest stellar populations in Leo A using the properties of ancient RR Lyrae variable stars as tracers. Well known and long established correlations exist between the periods and luminosities of RR Lyrae variable stars and their ages an

  1. Wnt signalling pathway parameters for mammalian cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chin Wee Tan

    Full Text Available Wnt/β-catenin signalling regulates cell fate, survival, proliferation and differentiation at many stages of mammalian development and pathology. Mutations of two key proteins in the pathway, APC and β-catenin, have been implicated in a range of cancers, including colorectal cancer. Activation of Wnt signalling has been associated with the stabilization and nuclear accumulation of β-catenin and consequential up-regulation of β-catenin/TCF gene transcription. In 2003, Lee et al. constructed a computational model of Wnt signalling supported by experimental data from analysis of time-dependent concentration of Wnt signalling proteins in Xenopus egg extracts. Subsequent studies have used the Xenopus quantitative data to infer Wnt pathway dynamics in other systems. As a basis for understanding Wnt signalling in mammalian cells, a confocal live cell imaging measurement technique is developed to measure the cell and nuclear volumes of MDCK, HEK293T cells and 3 human colorectal cancer cell lines and the concentrations of Wnt signalling proteins β-catenin, Axin, APC, GSK3β and E-cadherin. These parameters provide the basis for formulating Wnt signalling models for kidney/intestinal epithelial mammalian cells. There are significant differences in concentrations of key proteins between Xenopus extracts and mammalian whole cell lysates. Higher concentrations of Axin and lower concentrations of APC are present in mammalian cells. Axin concentrations are greater than APC in kidney epithelial cells, whereas in intestinal epithelial cells the APC concentration is higher than Axin. Computational simulations based on Lee's model, with this new data, suggest a need for a recalibration of the model.A quantitative understanding of Wnt signalling in mammalian cells, in particular human colorectal cancers requires a detailed understanding of the concentrations of key protein complexes over time. Simulations of Wnt signalling in mammalian cells can be initiated

  2. Ancient Egyptian Medicine: A Systematic Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel Adu-Gyamfi


    Full Text Available Our present day knowledge in the area of medicine in Ancient Egypt has been severally sourced from medical papyri several of which have been deduced and analyzed by different scholars. For educational purposes it is always imperative to consult different literature or sources in the teaching of ancient Egypt and medicine in particular. To avoid subjectivity the author has found the need to re-engage the efforts made by several scholars in adducing evidences from medical papyri. In the quest to re-engage the efforts of earlier writers and commentaries on the medical papyri, we are afforded the opportunity to be informed about the need to ask further questions to enable us to construct or reconstruct both past and modern views on ancient Egyptian medical knowledge. It is this vocation the author sought to pursue in the interim, through a preliminary review, to highlight, comment and reinvigorate in the reader or researcher the need for a continuous engagement of some pertinent documentary sources on Ancient Egyptian medical knowledge for educational and research purposes. The study is based on qualitative review of published literature. The selection of those articles as sources was based on the focus of the review, in order to purposively select and comment on articles that were published based either on information from a medical papyrus or focused on medical specialization among the ancient Egyptians as well as ancient Egyptian knowledge on diseases and medicine. It was found that the Egyptians developed relatively sophisticated medical practices covering significant medical fields such as herbal medicine, gynecology and obstetrics, anatomy and physiology, mummification and even the preliminary form of surgery. These practices, perhaps, were developed as remedies for the prevailing diseases and the accidents that might have occurred during the construction of their giant pyramids. It must be stated that they were not without flaws. Also, the

  3. The Ancient Kemetic Roots of Library and Information Science. (United States)

    Zulu, Itibari M.

    This paper argues that the ancient people of Kemet (Egypt), "the black land," built and operated the first major libraries and institutions of higher education in the world. Topics of discussion include the Ancient Egyptians as an African people; a chronology of Ancient Kemet; literature in Kemet; a history of Egyptian Librarianship; the…

  4. Deep sequencing of RNA from ancient maize kernels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fordyce, Sarah Louise; Avila Arcos, Maria del Carmen; Rasmussen, Morten;


    The characterization of biomolecules from ancient samples can shed otherwise unobtainable insights into the past. Despite the fundamental role of transcriptomal change in evolution, the potential of ancient RNA remains unexploited - perhaps due to dogma associated with the fragility of RNA. We...... maize kernels. The results suggest that ancient seed transcriptomics may offer a powerful new tool with which to study plant domestication....

  5. Genetic diversity among ancient Nordic populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linea Melchior

    Full Text Available Using established criteria for work with fossil DNA we have analysed mitochondrial DNA from 92 individuals from 18 locations in Denmark ranging in time from the Mesolithic to the Medieval Age. Unequivocal assignment of mtDNA haplotypes was possible for 56 of the ancient individuals; however, the success rate varied substantially between sites; the highest rates were obtained with untouched, freshly excavated material, whereas heavy handling, archeological preservation and storage for many years influenced the ability to obtain authentic endogenic DNA. While the nucleotide diversity at two locations was similar to that among extant Danes, the diversity at four sites was considerably higher. This supports previous observations for ancient Britons. The overall occurrence of haplogroups did not deviate from extant Scandinavians, however, haplogroup I was significantly more frequent among the ancient Danes (average 13% than among extant Danes and Scandinavians (approximately 2.5% as well as among other ancient population samples reported. Haplogroup I could therefore have been an ancient Southern Scandinavian type "diluted" by later immigration events. Interestingly, the two Neolithic samples (4,200 YBP, Bell Beaker culture that were typed were haplogroup U4 and U5a, respectively, and the single Bronze Age sample (3,300-3,500 YBP was haplogroup U4. These two haplogroups have been associated with the Mesolithic populations of Central and Northern Europe. Therefore, at least for Southern Scandinavia, our findings do not support a possible replacement of a haplogroup U dominated hunter-gatherer population by a more haplogroup diverse Neolithic Culture.

  6. Ancient Egypt in our Cultural Heritage?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vera Vasiljević


    Full Text Available Inspiration derived from ancient Egypt is usually expressed through the Egyptian motifs in arts and popular culture of the 19th and 20th centuries, as well as through the non-scientific interpretations of the culture, very much based upon the Renaissance ones. The number and variety of material and non-material traces of this fascination are most expressed in the countries where, along with the early support for the institutional development of Egyptology, there existed economically potent educated middle classes (Western and Central Europe, USA, but may also be traced elsewhere. The public fascination by ancient Egypt has not ceased by the times of foundation of Egyptology, marked by the decipherment of the hieroglyphic script in 1822. Until the end of the 20th century Egyptologists have rarely dealt with the prelude to their discipline, limiting their interest to the critical approach to ancient sources and to noting the attempts to interpret the hieroglyphic script and the function of pyramids. However, the rising importance of the reception studies in other disciplines raised the interest of Egyptologists for the "fascination of Egypt", thus changing the status of various modes of expressing "Egyptomania" – they have thus become a part of the cultural heritage, registered, documented, preserved and studied. The research of this kind is only beginning in Serbia. The line of inquiry enhances the knowledge of the scope, manifestations and roles of the interest in Egypt, not limited by the national or political borders. On the other hand, the existence of the cultural heritage similar to the wider European view of ancient Egypt – short remarks by Jerotej Račanin, Kandor by Atanasije Stojković, the usage of architectural motifs derived from Egypt, the emergence of small private collections, to mention several early examples – all show that the research into the reception of ancient Egypt may contribute to the knowledge about the history

  7. Ancient and Medieval Cosmology in Armenian Highland (United States)

    Farmanyan, Sona V.; Mickaelian, Areg M.


    Humankind has always sought to recognize the nature of various sky related phenomena and tried to give them explanations. It is especially vivid in ancient cultures, many of which are related to the Middle East. The purpose of this study is to identify ancient Armenian's pantheistic and cosmological perceptions, world view, notions and beliefs. By this study we answer the question "How did the Universe work in Ancient Armenian Highland?" The paper focuses on the structure of the Universe and many phenomena of nature that have always had major influence on ancient Armenians thinking. Here we weave together astronomy, anthropology and mythology of Armenia, and scientific thinking revealed in local astronomy traditions. The initial review of the study covers Moses of Khoren, Yeznik of Koghb, Anania Shirakatsi and other 5th-7th centuries historians' and scientists' records about the Universe related superstitious beliefs and cosmological understanding. By discussing and comparing Universe structure in various regional traditions, myths, folk songs and phraseological units we very often came across "seven worlds", "seven earths" and "seven layers" concepts. We draw parallels between scientific and mythological Earth and Heaven and thus find similar number of layers on both of the ancient and modern thinking. In the article we also give some details about the tripartite structure of the Universe and how these parts are connected with axis. This axis is either a column or a Cosmic Tree (Kenatz Tsar). In Armenian culture the preliminary meanings of the Kenatz Tsar are more vivid in folk songs (Jan gyulums), plays, epic, and so on, which was subsequently mixed with religious and spiritual views. We conclude that the perception of the Universe structure and celestial objects had a significant impact on culture and worldview of the people of the Armenian Highland; particularly it was one of the bases of the regional cultural diversity.

  8. Archetype, adaptation and the mammalian heart. (United States)

    Meijler, F L; Meijler, T D


    Forty years ago, we started our quest for 'The Holy Grail' of understanding ventricular rate control and rhythm in atrial fibrillation (AF). We therefore studied the morphology and function of a wide range of mammalian hearts. From mouse to whale, we found that all hearts show similar structural and functional characteristics. This suggests that the mammalian heart remained well conserved during evolution and in this aspect it differs from other organs and parts of the mammalian body. The archetype of the mammalian heart was apparently so successful that adaptation by natural selection (evolution) caused by varying habitat demands, as occurred in other organs and many other aspects of mammalian anatomy, bypassed the heart. The structure and function of the heart of placental mammals have thus been strikingly conserved throughout evolution. The changes in the mammalian heart that did take place were mostly adjustments (scaling), to compensate for variations in body size and shape. A remarkable scaling effect is, for instance, the difference in atrioventricular (AV) conduction time, which is vital for optimal cardiac function in all mammals, small and large. Scaling of AV conduction takes place in the AV node (AVN), but its substrate is unknown. This sheds new light on the vital role of the AVN in health and disease. The AVN is master and servant of the heart at the same time and is of salient importance for our understanding of supraventricular arrhythmias in humans, especially AF. In Information Technology a software infra-structure called 'enterprise service bus' (ESB) may provide understanding of the mammalian heart's conservation during evolution. The ESB is quite unspecific (and thus general) when compared with the specialised components it has to support. For instance, one of the functions of an ESB is the routing of messages between system nodes. This routing is independent and unaware of the content of the messages. The function of the heart is likewise

  9. Mammalian Cell-Based Sensor System (United States)

    Banerjee, Pratik; Franz, Briana; Bhunia, Arun K.

    Use of living cells or cellular components in biosensors is receiving increased attention and opens a whole new area of functional diagnostics. The term "mammalian cell-based biosensor" is designated to biosensors utilizing mammalian cells as the biorecognition element. Cell-based assays, such as high-throughput screening (HTS) or cytotoxicity testing, have already emerged as dependable and promising approaches to measure the functionality or toxicity of a compound (in case of HTS); or to probe the presence of pathogenic or toxigenic entities in clinical, environmental, or food samples. External stimuli or changes in cellular microenvironment sometimes perturb the "normal" physiological activities of mammalian cells, thus allowing CBBs to screen, monitor, and measure the analyte-induced changes. The advantage of CBBs is that they can report the presence or absence of active components, such as live pathogens or active toxins. In some cases, mammalian cells or plasma membranes are used as electrical capacitors and cell-cell and cell-substrate contact is measured via conductivity or electrical impedance. In addition, cytopathogenicity or cytotoxicity induced by pathogens or toxins resulting in apoptosis or necrosis could be measured via optical devices using fluorescence or luminescence. This chapter focuses mainly on the type and applications of different mammalian cell-based sensor systems.

  10. Enhancer evolution across 20 mammalian species

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villar, Diego; Berthelot, Camille; Aldridge, Sarah;


    The mammalian radiation has corresponded with rapid changes in noncoding regions of the genome, but we lack a comprehensive understanding of regulatory evolution in mammals. Here, we track the evolution of promoters and enhancers active in liver across 20 mammalian species from six diverse orders...... by profiling genomic enrichment of H3K27 acetylation and H3K4 trimethylation. We report that rapid evolution of enhancers is a universal feature of mammalian genomes. Most of the recently evolved enhancers arise from ancestral DNA exaptation, rather than lineage-specific expansions of repeat elements....... In contrast, almost all liver promoters are partially or fully conserved across these species. Our data further reveal that recently evolved enhancers can be associated with genes under positive selection, demonstrating the power of this approach for annotating regulatory adaptations in genomic sequences...

  11. Autofluorescence of viable cultured mammalian cells. (United States)

    Aubin, J E


    The autofluorescence other than intrinsic protein emission of viable cultured mammalian cells has been investigated. The fluorescence was found to originate in discrete cytoplasmic vesicle-like regions and to be absent from the nucleus. Excitation and emission spectra of viable cells revealed at least two distinct fluorescent species. Comparison of cell spectra with spectra of known cellular metabolites suggested that most, if not all, of the fluorescence arises from intracellular nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH) and riboflavin and flavin coenzymes. Various changes in culture conditions did not affect the observed autofluorescence intensity. A multiparameter flow system (MACCS) was used to compare the fluorescence intensities of numerous cultured mammalian cells.

  12. Transmissible [corrected] dog cancer genome reveals the origin and history of an ancient cell lineage. (United States)

    Murchison, Elizabeth P; Wedge, David C; Alexandrov, Ludmil B; Fu, Beiyuan; Martincorena, Inigo; Ning, Zemin; Tubio, Jose M C; Werner, Emma I; Allen, Jan; De Nardi, Andrigo Barboza; Donelan, Edward M; Marino, Gabriele; Fassati, Ariberto; Campbell, Peter J; Yang, Fengtang; Burt, Austin; Weiss, Robin A; Stratton, Michael R


    Canine transmissible venereal tumor (CTVT) is the oldest known somatic cell lineage. It is a transmissible cancer that propagates naturally in dogs. We sequenced the genomes of two CTVT tumors and found that CTVT has acquired 1.9 million somatic substitution mutations and bears evidence of exposure to ultraviolet light. CTVT is remarkably stable and lacks subclonal heterogeneity despite thousands of rearrangements, copy-number changes, and retrotransposon insertions. More than 10,000 genes carry nonsynonymous variants, and 646 genes have been lost. CTVT first arose in a dog with low genomic heterozygosity that may have lived about 11,000 years ago. The cancer spawned by this individual dispersed across continents about 500 years ago. Our results provide a genetic identikit of an ancient dog and demonstrate the robustness of mammalian somatic cells to survive for millennia despite a massive mutation burden.

  13. Antimicrobial Functions of Lactoferrin Promote Genetic Conflicts in Ancient Primates and Modern Humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew F Barber


    Full Text Available Lactoferrin is a multifunctional mammalian immunity protein that limits microbial growth through sequestration of nutrient iron. Additionally, lactoferrin possesses cationic protein domains that directly bind and inhibit diverse microbes. The implications for these dual functions on lactoferrin evolution and genetic conflicts with microbes remain unclear. Here we show that lactoferrin has been subject to recurrent episodes of positive selection during primate divergence predominately at antimicrobial peptide surfaces consistent with long-term antagonism by bacteria. An abundant lactoferrin polymorphism in human populations and Neanderthals also exhibits signatures of positive selection across primates, linking ancient host-microbe conflicts to modern human genetic variation. Rapidly evolving sites in lactoferrin further correspond to molecular interfaces with opportunistic bacterial pathogens causing meningitis, pneumonia, and sepsis. Because microbes actively target lactoferrin to acquire iron, we propose that the emergence of antimicrobial activity provided a pivotal mechanism of adaptation sparking evolutionary conflicts via acquisition of new protein functions.

  14. Antimicrobial Functions of Lactoferrin Promote Genetic Conflicts in Ancient Primates and Modern Humans (United States)

    Kronenberg, Zev; Yandell, Mark; Elde, Nels C.


    Lactoferrin is a multifunctional mammalian immunity protein that limits microbial growth through sequestration of nutrient iron. Additionally, lactoferrin possesses cationic protein domains that directly bind and inhibit diverse microbes. The implications for these dual functions on lactoferrin evolution and genetic conflicts with microbes remain unclear. Here we show that lactoferrin has been subject to recurrent episodes of positive selection during primate divergence predominately at antimicrobial peptide surfaces consistent with long-term antagonism by bacteria. An abundant lactoferrin polymorphism in human populations and Neanderthals also exhibits signatures of positive selection across primates, linking ancient host-microbe conflicts to modern human genetic variation. Rapidly evolving sites in lactoferrin further correspond to molecular interfaces with opportunistic bacterial pathogens causing meningitis, pneumonia, and sepsis. Because microbes actively target lactoferrin to acquire iron, we propose that the emergence of antimicrobial activity provided a pivotal mechanism of adaptation sparking evolutionary conflicts via acquisition of new protein functions. PMID:27203426

  15. AMS radiocarbon dating of ancient Japanese sutras

    CERN Document Server

    Oda, H; Nakamura, T; Fujita, K


    Radiocarbon ages of ancient Japanese sutras whose historical ages were known paleographically were measured by means of accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). Calibrated radiocarbon ages of five samples were consistent with the corresponding historical ages; the 'old wood effect' is negligible for ancient Japanese sutras. Japanese paper has been made from fresh branches grown within a few years and the interval from trimming off the branches to writing sutra on the paper is within one year. The good agreement between the calibrated radiocarbon ages and the historical ages is supported by such characteristics of Japanese paper. It is indicated in this study that Japanese sutra is a suitable sample for radiocarbon dating in the historic period because of little gap by 'old wood effect'.

  16. Paleo-Environmental Reconstruction Using Ancient DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Mikkel Winther

    The aim of this thesis has been to investigate and expand the methodology and applicability for using ancient DNA deposited in lake sediments to detect and determine its genetic sources for paleo-environmental reconstruction. The aim was furthermore to put this tool into an applicable context...... solving other scientifically interesting questions. Still in its childhood, ancient environmental DNA research has a large potential for still developing, improving and discovering its possibilities and limitations in different environments and for identifying various organisms, both in terms...... of the sampling methods and strategies (taphonomic processes), the more fundamental molecular methodologies (e.g. extraction and sequencing) and eventually the bioinformatic processing. In the enclosed studies we have tried to take some principal steps towards improving this, firstly by reviewing previous...

  17. Human evolution: a tale from ancient genomes. (United States)

    Llamas, Bastien; Willerslev, Eske; Orlando, Ludovic


    The field of human ancient DNA (aDNA) has moved from mitochondrial sequencing that suffered from contamination and provided limited biological insights, to become a fully genomic discipline that is changing our conception of human history. Recent successes include the sequencing of extinct hominins, and true population genomic studies of Bronze Age populations. Among the emerging areas of aDNA research, the analysis of past epigenomes is set to provide more new insights into human adaptation and disease susceptibility through time. Starting as a mere curiosity, ancient human genetics has become a major player in the understanding of our evolutionary history.This article is part of the themed issue 'Evo-devo in the genomics era, and the origins of morphological diversity'.

  18. Lipids of aquatic sediments, recent and ancient (United States)

    Eglinton, G.; Hajibrahim, S. K.; Maxwell, J. R.; Quirke, J. M. E.; Shaw, G. J.; Volkman, J. K.; Wardroper, A. M. K.


    Computerized gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) is now an essential tool in the analysis of the complex mixtures of lipids (geolipids) encountered in aquatic sediments, both 'recent' (less than 1 million years old) and ancient. The application of MS, and particularly GC-MS, has been instrumental in the rapid development of organic geochemistry and environmental organic chemistry in recent years. The techniques used have resulted in the identification of numerous compounds of a variety of types in sediments. Most attention has been concentrated on molecules of limited size, mainly below 500 molecular mass, and of limited functionality, for examples, hydrocarbons, fatty acids and alcohols. Examples from recent studies (at Bristol) of contemporary, 'recent' and ancient sediments are presented and discussed.

  19. Putative ancient microorganisms from amber nuggets. (United States)

    Veiga-Crespo, Patricia; Blasco, Lucía; Poza, Margarita; Villa, Tomás G


    Evolutionary microbiology studies based on the isolation of ancient DNA and/or microbial samples are scarce due to the difficulty of finding well preserved biological specimens. However, amber is a fossil resin with natural preserving properties for microbial cells and DNA. The visualization by transmission electron microscopy of different microorganism-like specimens found in amber nuggets from both the Miocene and the Cretaceous periods was accompanied by studies of ancient DNA obtained from the nuggets. After the design of specific primers based on the present sequences of both genes in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the ancestral AGP2 sequence from the Miocene, as well as the 18S rRNA from the Cretaceous, were amplified.

  20. Rangifer and man: An ancient relationship

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryan Gordon


    Full Text Available A long-term relationship between Rangifer and humans is documented in three case studies: the Canadian Barrenlands (8000 years ago to Historic period, Ice-Age France (11 000-19 000 years ago and Mesolithic Russia (7000¬10 000 years ago. Ancient human and herd migration occurred in all areas, based upon Rangifer remains and seasonal variations in tools along reconstructed migration routes, with few if any hunting camps outside the routes. An April peak of ancient human births is inferred from the historic record where we see births occurring nine months after peak nutritional states in herds and people. The origin of reindeer domestication and breeding in Eurasia is discussed.

  1. Segmentation of Ancient Telugu Text Documents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Srinivasa Rao A.V


    Full Text Available OCR of ancient document images remains a challenging task till date. Scanning process itself introduces deformation of document images. Cleaning process of these document images will result in information loss. Segmentation contributes an invariance process in OCR. Complex scripts, like derivatives of Brahmi, encounter many problems in the segmentation process. Segmentation of meaningful units, (instead of isolated patterns, revealed interesting trends. A segmentation technique for the ancient Telugu document image into meaningful units is proposed. The topological features of the meaningful units within the script line are adopted as a basis, while segmenting the text line. Horizontal profile pattern is convolved with Gaussian kernel. The statistical properties of meaningful units are explored by extensively analyzing the geometrical patterns of the meaningful unit. The efficiency of the proposed algorithm involving segmentation process is found to be 73.5% for the case of uncleaned document images.

  2. The ancient Greeks present: Rational Trigonometry

    CERN Document Server

    Wildberger, N J


    Pythagoras' theorem, the area of a triangle as one half the base times the height, and Heron's formula are amongst the most important and useful results of ancient Greek geometry. Here we look at all three in a new and improved light, using quadrance not distance. This leads to a simpler and more elegant trigonometry, in which angle is replaced by spread, and which extends to arbitrary fields and more general quadratic forms.

  3. Computed tomography of ancient Egyptian mummies. (United States)

    Harwood-Nash, D C


    This first report of the application of computed tomography (CT) to the study of ancient mummies, the desiccated brain of a boy and the body of a young woman within her cartonnage, shows that CT is uniquely suitable for the study of such antiquities, a study that does not necessitate destruction of the mummy or its cartonnage. Exquisite images result that are of great paleoanatomical, paleopathological, and archeological significance.

  4. Volatile and Isotopic Imprints of Ancient Mars (United States)

    Mahaffy, Paul R.; Conrad, Pamela G.


    The science investigations enabled by Curiosity rover's instruments focus on identifying and exploring the habitability of the Martian environment. Measurements of noble gases, organic and inorganic compounds, and the isotopes of light elements permit the study of the physical and chemical processes that have transformed Mars throughout its history. Samples of the atmosphere, volatiles released from soils, and rocks from the floor of Gale Crater have provided a wealth of new data and a window into conditions on ancient Mars.

  5. Chemistry Progress and Civilization in Ancient China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    JIANG Yu-Qian; RUAN Shu-Xiang; TANG Shan; SHUAI Zhi-Gang


    @@ During the 6,000 years of Chinese civilization, chemistry has played an essential role.The bronzed chime bells of the Warring States Period (475-221 BC) unearthed in Hubei Province shows not only the excellence in musical instruments in ancient China, but also the technological advances in metallurgy.Chinese alchemy was not originated from the quest to turn common metals to gold, instead, it was for searching medicines for longevity of human beings, mostly practised by Taoists.

  6. Ancient News: HMGBs are Universal Sentinels

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Marco E. Bianchi; Barbara Celona


    @@ Yanai et al. (2009, Nature 462, 99-103) have shown that high mobility group boxs (HMGBs) are universal sensors of viral nucleic acids, and thus of cell infection. This appears to be an evolutionary ancient mechanism of virus detection, and possibly might be a facet of a more general propensity of HMGBs to act as integrators of signals that pertain to peace and stress, life and death.

  7. Maternal regulation of offspring development in mammals is an ancient adaptation tied to lactation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael L. Power


    Full Text Available The developmental origins of health and disease (DOHaD is a paradigm for understanding metabolic diseases of modern humans. Vulnerability to disease is linked to perturbations in development during critical time periods in fetal and neonatal life. These perturbations are caused by environmental signals, often generated or transduced by the mother. The regulation of mammalian development depends to a large extent on maternal biochemical signals to her offspring. We argue that this adaptation is ancient, and originated with the evolution of lactation. Lactation evolved earlier than live birth and before the extensive placental development of modern eutherian mammals. Milk contains a host of signaling molecules including nutrients, immunoglobulins, growth factors and metabolic hormones. As evidenced by marsupials, lactation originally served to supply the biochemical factors for growth and development for what is essentially a fetus to a weanling transitioning to independent existence. In placental mammals maternal signaling in earliest life is accomplished through the maternal–placental–fetal connection, with more of development shifted to in utero life. However, significant development occurs postpartum, supported by milk. Mothers of all taxa provide biochemical signals to their offspring, but for non-mammalian mothers the time window is short. Developing mammals receive maternal biochemical signals over an extended period. These signals serve to guide normal development, but also can vary in response to environmental conditions. The ancient adaptation of lactation resulted in a lineage (mammals in which maternal regulation of offspring development evolved to a heightened degree, with the ability to modify development at multiple time points. Modern metabolic diseases may arise due to a mismatch between maternal regulation and eventual circumstances of the offspring, and due to a large proportion of mothers that exceed past evolutionary norms

  8. A promoter-level mammalian expression atlas

    KAUST Repository

    Forest, Alistair R R


    Regulated transcription controls the diversity, developmental pathways and spatial organization of the hundreds of cell types that make up a mammal. Using single-molecule cDNA sequencing, we mapped transcription start sites (TSSs) and their usage in human and mouse primary cells, cell lines and tissues to produce a comprehensive overview of mammalian gene expression across the human body. We find that few genes are truly ‘housekeeping’, whereas many mammalian promoters are composite entities composed of several closely separated TSSs, with independent cell-type-specific expression profiles. TSSs specific to different cell types evolve at different rates, whereas promoters of broadly expressed genes are the most conserved. Promoter-based expression analysis reveals key transcription factors defining cell states and links them to binding-site motifs. The functions of identified novel transcripts can be predicted by coexpression and sample ontology enrichment analyses. The functional annotation of the mammalian genome 5 (FANTOM5) project provides comprehensive expression profiles and functional annotation of mammalian cell-type-specific transcriptomes with wide applications in biomedical research.

  9. A promoter-level mammalian expression atlas. (United States)

    Forrest, Alistair R R; Kawaji, Hideya; Rehli, Michael; Baillie, J Kenneth; de Hoon, Michiel J L; Haberle, Vanja; Lassmann, Timo; Kulakovskiy, Ivan V; Lizio, Marina; Itoh, Masayoshi; Andersson, Robin; Mungall, Christopher J; Meehan, Terrence F; Schmeier, Sebastian; Bertin, Nicolas; Jørgensen, Mette; Dimont, Emmanuel; Arner, Erik; Schmidl, Christian; Schaefer, Ulf; Medvedeva, Yulia A; Plessy, Charles; Vitezic, Morana; Severin, Jessica; Semple, Colin A; Ishizu, Yuri; Young, Robert S; Francescatto, Margherita; Alam, Intikhab; Albanese, Davide; Altschuler, Gabriel M; Arakawa, Takahiro; Archer, John A C; Arner, Peter; Babina, Magda; Rennie, Sarah; Balwierz, Piotr J; Beckhouse, Anthony G; Pradhan-Bhatt, Swati; Blake, Judith A; Blumenthal, Antje; Bodega, Beatrice; Bonetti, Alessandro; Briggs, James; Brombacher, Frank; Burroughs, A Maxwell; Califano, Andrea; Cannistraci, Carlo V; Carbajo, Daniel; Chen, Yun; Chierici, Marco; Ciani, Yari; Clevers, Hans C; Dalla, Emiliano; Davis, Carrie A; Detmar, Michael; Diehl, Alexander D; Dohi, Taeko; Drabløs, Finn; Edge, Albert S B; Edinger, Matthias; Ekwall, Karl; Endoh, Mitsuhiro; Enomoto, Hideki; Fagiolini, Michela; Fairbairn, Lynsey; Fang, Hai; Farach-Carson, Mary C; Faulkner, Geoffrey J; Favorov, Alexander V; Fisher, Malcolm E; Frith, Martin C; Fujita, Rie; Fukuda, Shiro; Furlanello, Cesare; Furino, Masaaki; Furusawa, Jun-ichi; Geijtenbeek, Teunis B; Gibson, Andrew P; Gingeras, Thomas; Goldowitz, Daniel; Gough, Julian; Guhl, Sven; Guler, Reto; Gustincich, Stefano; Ha, Thomas J; Hamaguchi, Masahide; Hara, Mitsuko; Harbers, Matthias; Harshbarger, Jayson; Hasegawa, Akira; Hasegawa, Yuki; Hashimoto, Takehiro; Herlyn, Meenhard; Hitchens, Kelly J; Ho Sui, Shannan J; Hofmann, Oliver M; Hoof, Ilka; Hori, Furni; Huminiecki, Lukasz; Iida, Kei; Ikawa, Tomokatsu; Jankovic, Boris R; Jia, Hui; Joshi, Anagha; Jurman, Giuseppe; Kaczkowski, Bogumil; Kai, Chieko; Kaida, Kaoru; Kaiho, Ai; Kajiyama, Kazuhiro; Kanamori-Katayama, Mutsumi; Kasianov, Artem S; Kasukawa, Takeya; Katayama, Shintaro; Kato, Sachi; Kawaguchi, Shuji; Kawamoto, Hiroshi; Kawamura, Yuki I; Kawashima, Tsugumi; Kempfle, Judith S; Kenna, Tony J; Kere, Juha; Khachigian, Levon M; Kitamura, Toshio; Klinken, S Peter; Knox, Alan J; Kojima, Miki; Kojima, Soichi; Kondo, Naoto; Koseki, Haruhiko; Koyasu, Shigeo; Krampitz, Sarah; Kubosaki, Atsutaka; Kwon, Andrew T; Laros, Jeroen F J; Lee, Weonju; Lennartsson, Andreas; Li, Kang; Lilje, Berit; Lipovich, Leonard; Mackay-Sim, Alan; Manabe, Ri-ichiroh; Mar, Jessica C; Marchand, Benoit; Mathelier, Anthony; Mejhert, Niklas; Meynert, Alison; Mizuno, Yosuke; de Lima Morais, David A; Morikawa, Hiromasa; Morimoto, Mitsuru; Moro, Kazuyo; Motakis, Efthymios; Motohashi, Hozumi; Mummery, Christine L; Murata, Mitsuyoshi; Nagao-Sato, Sayaka; Nakachi, Yutaka; Nakahara, Fumio; Nakamura, Toshiyuki; Nakamura, Yukio; Nakazato, Kenichi; van Nimwegen, Erik; Ninomiya, Noriko; Nishiyori, Hiromi; Noma, Shohei; Noma, Shohei; Noazaki, Tadasuke; Ogishima, Soichi; Ohkura, Naganari; Ohimiya, Hiroko; Ohno, Hiroshi; Ohshima, Mitsuhiro; Okada-Hatakeyama, Mariko; Okazaki, Yasushi; Orlando, Valerio; Ovchinnikov, Dmitry A; Pain, Arnab; Passier, Robert; Patrikakis, Margaret; Persson, Helena; Piazza, Silvano; Prendergast, James G D; Rackham, Owen J L; Ramilowski, Jordan A; Rashid, Mamoon; Ravasi, Timothy; Rizzu, Patrizia; Roncador, Marco; Roy, Sugata; Rye, Morten B; Saijyo, Eri; Sajantila, Antti; Saka, Akiko; Sakaguchi, Shimon; Sakai, Mizuho; Sato, Hiroki; Savvi, Suzana; Saxena, Alka; Schneider, Claudio; Schultes, Erik A; Schulze-Tanzil, Gundula G; Schwegmann, Anita; Sengstag, Thierry; Sheng, Guojun; Shimoji, Hisashi; Shimoni, Yishai; Shin, Jay W; Simon, Christophe; Sugiyama, Daisuke; Sugiyama, Takaai; Suzuki, Masanori; Suzuki, Naoko; Swoboda, Rolf K; 't Hoen, Peter A C; Tagami, Michihira; Takahashi, Naoko; Takai, Jun; Tanaka, Hiroshi; Tatsukawa, Hideki; Tatum, Zuotian; Thompson, Mark; Toyodo, Hiroo; Toyoda, Tetsuro; Valen, Elvind; van de Wetering, Marc; van den Berg, Linda M; Verado, Roberto; Vijayan, Dipti; Vorontsov, Ilya E; Wasserman, Wyeth W; Watanabe, Shoko; Wells, Christine A; Winteringham, Louise N; Wolvetang, Ernst; Wood, Emily J; Yamaguchi, Yoko; Yamamoto, Masayuki; Yoneda, Misako; Yonekura, Yohei; Yoshida, Shigehiro; Zabierowski, Susan E; Zhang, Peter G; Zhao, Xiaobei; Zucchelli, Silvia; Summers, Kim M; Suzuki, Harukazu; Daub, Carsten O; Kawai, Jun; Heutink, Peter; Hide, Winston; Freeman, Tom C; Lenhard, Boris; Bajic, Vladimir B; Taylor, Martin S; Makeev, Vsevolod J; Sandelin, Albin; Hume, David A; Carninci, Piero; Hayashizaki, Yoshihide


    Regulated transcription controls the diversity, developmental pathways and spatial organization of the hundreds of cell types that make up a mammal. Using single-molecule cDNA sequencing, we mapped transcription start sites (TSSs) and their usage in human and mouse primary cells, cell lines and tissues to produce a comprehensive overview of mammalian gene expression across the human body. We find that few genes are truly 'housekeeping', whereas many mammalian promoters are composite entities composed of several closely separated TSSs, with independent cell-type-specific expression profiles. TSSs specific to different cell types evolve at different rates, whereas promoters of broadly expressed genes are the most conserved. Promoter-based expression analysis reveals key transcription factors defining cell states and links them to binding-site motifs. The functions of identified novel transcripts can be predicted by coexpression and sample ontology enrichment analyses. The functional annotation of the mammalian genome 5 (FANTOM5) project provides comprehensive expression profiles and functional annotation of mammalian cell-type-specific transcriptomes with wide applications in biomedical research.

  10. Architecture of mammalian respiratory complex I. (United States)

    Vinothkumar, Kutti R; Zhu, Jiapeng; Hirst, Judy


    Complex I (NADH:ubiquinone oxidoreductase) is essential for oxidative phosphorylation in mammalian mitochondria. It couples electron transfer from NADH to ubiquinone with proton translocation across the energy-transducing inner membrane, providing electrons for respiration and driving ATP synthesis. Mammalian complex I contains 44 different nuclear- and mitochondrial-encoded subunits, with a combined mass of 1 MDa. The 14 conserved 'core' subunits have been structurally defined in the minimal, bacterial complex, but the structures and arrangement of the 30 'supernumerary' subunits are unknown. Here we describe a 5 Å resolution structure of complex I from Bos taurus heart mitochondria, a close relative of the human enzyme, determined by single-particle electron cryo-microscopy. We present the structures of the mammalian core subunits that contain eight iron-sulphur clusters and 60 transmembrane helices, identify 18 supernumerary transmembrane helices, and assign and model 14 supernumerary subunits. Thus, we considerably advance knowledge of the structure of mammalian complex I and the architecture of its supernumerary ensemble around the core domains. Our structure provides insights into the roles of the supernumerary subunits in regulation, assembly and homeostasis, and a basis for understanding the effects of mutations that cause a diverse range of human diseases.

  11. Cholesterol, the central lipid of mammalian cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maxfield, F. R.; van Meer, G.


    Despite its importance for mammalian cell biology and human health, there are many basic aspects of cholesterol homeostasis that are not well understood. Even for the well-characterized delivery of cholesterol to cells via lipoproteins, a novel regulatory mechanism has been discovered recently, invo

  12. Archetype, adaptation and the mammalian heart

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meijler, F.L.; Meijler, T.D.


    Forty years ago, we started our quest for 'The Holy Grail' of understanding ventricular rate control and rhythm in atrial fibrillation (AF). We therefore studied the morphology and function of a wide range of mammalian hearts. From mouse to whale, we found that all hearts show similar structural and

  13. Molecular evolution of mammalian ribonucleases 1

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dubois, J.Y; Ursing, B.M.; Kolkman, J.A.; Beintema, J.J


    There have been many studies on the chemistry of mammalian pancreatic ribonucleases (ribonucleases 1), but the functional biology of this family of homologous proteins is still largely unknown. Many studies have been performed on the molecular evolution and properties of this enzyme from species bel

  14. The evolution of mammalian gene families.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffery P Demuth

    Full Text Available Gene families are groups of homologous genes that are likely to have highly similar functions. Differences in family size due to lineage-specific gene duplication and gene loss may provide clues to the evolutionary forces that have shaped mammalian genomes. Here we analyze the gene families contained within the whole genomes of human, chimpanzee, mouse, rat, and dog. In total we find that more than half of the 9,990 families present in the mammalian common ancestor have either expanded or contracted along at least one lineage. Additionally, we find that a large number of families are completely lost from one or more mammalian genomes, and a similar number of gene families have arisen subsequent to the mammalian common ancestor. Along the lineage leading to modern humans we infer the gain of 689 genes and the loss of 86 genes since the split from chimpanzees, including changes likely driven by adaptive natural selection. Our results imply that humans and chimpanzees differ by at least 6% (1,418 of 22,000 genes in their complement of genes, which stands in stark contrast to the oft-cited 1.5% difference between orthologous nucleotide sequences. This genomic "revolving door" of gene gain and loss represents a large number of genetic differences separating humans from our closest relatives.

  15. 2000 Year-old ancient equids: an ancient-DNA lesson from pompeii remains. (United States)

    Di Bernardo, Giovanni; Del Gaudio, Stefania; Galderisi, Umberto; Cipollaro, Marilena


    Ancient DNA extracted from 2000 year-old equine bones was examined in order to amplify mitochondrial and nuclear DNA fragments. A specific equine satellite-type sequence representing 3.7%-11% of the entire equine genome, proved to be a suitable target to address the question of the presence of aDNA in ancient bones. The PCR strategy designed to investigate this specific target also allowed us to calculate the molecular weight of amplifiable DNA fragments. Sequencing of a 370 bp DNA fragment of mitochondrial control region allowed the comparison of ancient DNA sequences with those of modern horses to assess their genetic relationship. The 16S rRNA mitochondrial gene was also examined to unravel the post-mortem base modification feature and to test the status of Pompeian equids taxon on the basis of a Mae III restriction site polymorphism.

  16. Reconstructing Ancient History-- Historiographical Review of the Ancient History of Korea, 1950s-2000s

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stella Xu


    Full Text Available The ancient history of Korea has been one of the most controversial and difficult phases to incorporate into an East Asian history survey class, not only because there are indeed quite a number of contested issues, but also because very few updated materials are available in English. This essay aims to provide a comprehensive and critical overview of research on the topic of Korean ancient history in the past six decades (mainly in South Korea, so that the ancient history of Korea can be understood first within the broader frame of East Asian history, and then in relation to the intellectual and ideological evolution which has significantly impacted historical interpretations in South Korea.

  17. Metabolic-flux analysis of mammalian-cell culture.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bonarius, H.P.J.


    In the biopharmaceutical industry mammalian cells are cultivated for the production of recombinant glycoproteins, vaccines, and monoclonal antibodies. In contrast to other expression systems, such as prokaryotes or yeasts, mammalian cells are able to glycosylate and fold therapeutic proteins correct

  18. The Ancient City of Pinqyao:Where the Time Stops

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lily Wang


    @@ It is a common night in May, I found myself wandering in the Ancient City of Pingyao.If not those neon light, I would even doubt that I had gone back to the ancient times.Located on the eastern banks of the Fen River, and in the southwestern edge of the Taiyuan basin, Pingyao Ancient City is the outstanding example of Chinese Han nationality cities during Ming and Qing Dynasties.

  19. Advances in structural mechanics of Chinese ancient architectures

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Maohong YU; Yoshiya ODA; Dongping FANG; Junhai ZHAO


    Chinese ancient architectures are valuable heritage of ancient culture of China. Many historical building have been preserved up to now. The researches on the structural mechanics of ancient architectures show the different aspects of structure and mechanics. Systematical studies on the structural mechanics of ancient architectures have been carried out at Xi'an Jiaotong University since 1982. It is related with the need of repair of some national preservation relics in Xi'an. These studies include: 1) Ancient wooden structures including three national preservation relics Arrow Tower at North City Gate, City Tower at East City Gate, and Baogao Temple in Ningbao, Zhejiang province. 2) Ancient tall masonry building, the Big Goose Pagoda and Small Goose Pagoda in Xi'an. 3) Mechanical characteristics of ancient soil under foundation and city wall; the influence of caves in and under the ancient City Wall on the stability of the wall. 4) The typical Chinese ancient building at the center of city: the Bell Tower and Drum tower. 5) The behavior of Dou-Gong and Joggle joint of Chinese ancient wooden structure. 6) The mechanical behavior of ancient soils under complex stress state. A new systematical strength theory, the unified strength theory, is used to analyze the stability of ancient city wall in Xi'an and foundation of tall pagoda built in Tang dynasty. These researches also concern differential settlements of Arrow Tower and resistance to earthquake of these historical architecture heritages. Some other studies are also introduced. This paper gives a summary of these researches. Preservation and research are nowadays an essential requirement for the famous monuments, buildings, towers and others. Our society is more and more conscious of this necessity, which involves increasing activities of restoration, and then sometimes also of repair, mechanical strengthening and seismic retrofitting. Many historical buildings have in fact problems of structural strength and

  20. Mapping the Ancient Maya Landscape from Space (United States)

    Sever, Tom


    This project uses new satellite and airborne imagery in combination with remote sensing, GIS, and GPS technology to understand the dynamics of how the Maya successfully interacted with their karst topographic landscape for several centuries in the northern Peten region of Guatemala. The ancient Maya attained one of the greatest population densities in human history in the tropical forest of the Peten, Guatemala, and it was in this region that the Maya civilization began, flourished, and abruptly disappeared for unknown reasons around AD 800. How the Maya were able to successfully manage water and feed this dense population is not known at this time. However, a recent NASA-funded project was the first to investigate large seasonal swamps (bajos) that make up 40 percent of the landscape. Through the use of remote sensing, ancient Maya features such as cities, roadways, canals and water reservoirs have been detected and verified through ground reconnaissance. The results of this research cast new light on the adaptation of the ancient Maya to their environment. Micro-environmental variation within the wetlands was elucidated and the different vegetational associations identified in the satellite imagery. More than 70 new archeological sites within and at the edges of the bajo were mapped and tested. Modification of the landscape by the Maya in the form of dams and reservoirs in the Holmul River and its tributaries and possible drainage canals in bajos was demonstrated. The recent acquisition of one-meter IKONOS imagery and high resolution STAR-3i radar imagery (2.5m backscatter/ 10m DEM), opens new possibilities for understanding how a civilization was able to survive for centuries upon a karst topographic landscape and their human-induced effects upon the local climate. This understanding is critical for the current population that is presently experiencing rapid population growth and destroying the landscape through non-traditional farming and grazing techniques

  1. [Bow legged adjectives in ancient literature]. (United States)

    Simon, Frantisek; Steger, Florian


    This article addresses the issue of capturing the medical entity called 'curved legs' in a terminologically exact way. In so doing, it refers to the long-lasting process of differentiation of exact nuances of meaning in Ancient Greek and Latin. In the chronological perusal of ancient Greek literature, it becomes evident that the various adjectives employed are often vague when looking at non-medical literature. By contrast, in the Hippocratic corpus these terms are for the first time annotated with explanations intended to lead to a more precise understanding of the described deformity. Further attempts of differentiation can be found in the writings of Galen, who not only distinguishes between outward and inward curvatures, but also between deformities of the thigh and lower leg as well as between pathological and natural curvatures. Latin literature also provides a series of adjectives that were initially often used in the meaning of 'curved' but it was not until Celsus that these were differentiated with respect to the type and direction of the curvature. When comparing Greek and Latin adjectives, it turns out that though the Latin term blaesus can be traced back etymologically to the Greek word beta lambda alpha iota sigma ó zeta, the meaning of beta lambda alpha iota sigma ó zeta does not fully correspond to that of the Latin word. It is not before the later common transliteration of Greek words that this adjective took on the meaning of beta lambda alpha iota sigma ó zeta; however, this was finally lost again. In summary, the article concludes that exact word meanings in ancient literature are often unclear and precise ascriptions of meanings are inconsistent. In the case of "curved legs," this has led to misunderstandings regarding the respective types and directions of the curvature.

  2. Dance Poem presents Ancient Northwestern Settings and Folle Customs

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    WEST of the Yang Pass, a dance poem created and performed by the Lanzhou Song and Dance Troupe, presents the audience with a picture of ancient times and folk customs on the Loess Plateau in Northwestern China. It depicts our ancestors’ staunch will to live, and their pioneering spirit, as well as the splendid traditional culture. The dance poem includes 11 sections: "Prelude," "Ancient Road," "Desert," "Camel Station," "Crescent Moon Spring," "Ancient Castle," "Temple Oil Lamps," "Mogao Grottoes," "Red Willows," "Market," "Ancient Battle Fields," and "Fields." West of the Yang Pass is a dance without particular characters or coherent plot. A group

  3. Scaling up the curvature of mammalian metabolism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan eBueno


    Full Text Available A curvilinear relationship between mammalian metabolic rate and body size on a log-log scale has been adopted in lieu of thelongstanding concept of a 3/4 allometric relationship (Kolokotrones et al. 2010. The central tenet of Metabolic Ecology (ME states that metabolism at the individual level scales-up to drive the ecology of populations, communities and ecosystems. If this tenet is correct, the curvature of metabolism should be perceived in other ecological traits. By analyzing the size scaling allometry of eight different mammalian traits including basal and field metabolic rate, offspring biomass production, ingestion rate, costs of locomotion, life span, population growth rate and population density we show that the curvature affects most ecological rates and

  4. [DNA homologous recombination repair in mammalian cells]. (United States)

    Popławski, Tomasz; Błasiak, Janusz


    DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) are the most serious DNA damage. Due to a great variety of factors causing DSBs, the efficacy of their repair is crucial for the cell's functioning and prevents DNA fragmentation, chromosomal translocation and deletion. In mammalian cells DSBs can be repaired by non-homologous end joining (NHEJ), homologous recombination (HRR) and single strand annealing (SSA). HRR can be divided into the first and second phase. The first phase is initiated by sensor proteins belonging to the MRN complex, that activate the ATM protein which target HRR proteins to obtain the second response phase--repair. HRR is precise because it utilizes a non-damaged homologous DNA fragment as a template. The key players of HRR in mammalian cells are MRN, RPA, Rad51 and its paralogs, Rad52 and Rad54.

  5. Mammalian Sperm Motility: Observation and Theory

    KAUST Repository

    Gaffney, E.A.


    Mammalian spermatozoa motility is a subject of growing importance because of rising human infertility and the possibility of improving animal breeding. We highlight opportunities for fluid and continuum dynamics to provide novel insights concerning the mechanics of these specialized cells, especially during their remarkable journey to the egg. The biological structure of the motile sperm appendage, the flagellum, is described and placed in the context of the mechanics underlying the migration of mammalian sperm through the numerous environments of the female reproductive tract. This process demands certain specific changes to flagellar movement and motility for which further mechanical insight would be valuable, although this requires improved modeling capabilities, particularly to increase our understanding of sperm progression in vivo. We summarize current theoretical studies, highlighting the synergistic combination of imaging and theory in exploring sperm motility, and discuss the challenges for future observational and theoretical studies in understanding the underlying mechanics. © 2011 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

  6. The Ancient Maya Landscape from Space (United States)

    Sever, T.; Arnold, James E. (Technical Monitor)


    The Peten, once inhabited by a population of several million before the collapse of the ancient Maya in the 10th and 11th centuries, is being repopulated toward its former demographic peak. Environmental dynamics, however, impose severe constraints to further development. Current practices in subsistence, commercial agriculture, and cattle raising are causing rapid deforestation resulting in the destruction of environmental and archeological resources. The use of remote sensing and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology is a cost-effective methodology for addressing issues in Maya archeology as well as monitoring the environmental impacts being experienced by the current population.

  7. Conserved intron positions in ancient protein modules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Roos Albert DG


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The timing of the origin of introns is of crucial importance for an understanding of early genome architecture. The Exon theory of genes proposed a role for introns in the formation of multi-exon proteins by exon shuffling and predicts the presence of conserved splice sites in ancient genes. In this study, large-scale analysis of potential conserved splice sites was performed using an intron-exon database (ExInt derived from GenBank. Results A set of conserved intron positions was found by matching identical splice sites sequences from distantly-related eukaryotic kingdoms. Most amino acid sequences with conserved introns were homologous to consensus sequences of functional domains from conserved proteins including kinases, phosphatases, small GTPases, transporters and matrix proteins. These included ancient proteins that originated before the eukaryote-prokaryote split, for instance the catalytic domain of protein phosphatase 2A where a total of eleven conserved introns were found. Using an experimental setup in which the relation between a splice site and the ancientness of its surrounding sequence could be studied, it was found that the presence of an intron was positively correlated to the ancientness of its surrounding sequence. Intron phase conservation was linked to the conservation of the gene sequence and not to the splice site sequence itself. However, no apparent differences in phase distribution were found between introns in conserved versus non-conserved sequences. Conclusion The data confirm an origin of introns deep in the eukaryotic branch and is in concordance with the presence of introns in the first functional protein modules in an 'Exon theory of genes' scenario. A model is proposed in which shuffling of primordial short exonic sequences led to the formation of the first functional protein modules, in line with hypotheses that see the formation of introns integral to the origins of genome evolution

  8. Extinct 244Pu in Ancient Zircons (United States)

    Turner, Grenville; Harrison, T. Mark; Holland, Greg; Mojzsis, Stephen J.; Gilmour, Jamie


    We have found evidence, in the form of fissiogenic xenon isotopes, for in situ decay of 244Pu in individual 4.1- to 4.2-billion-year-old zircons from the Jack Hills region of Western Australia. Because of its short half-life, 82 million years, 244Pu was extinct within 600 million years of Earth's formation. Detrital zircons are the only known relics to have survived from this period, and a study of their Pu geochemistry will allow us to date ancient metamorphic events and determine the terrestrial Pu/U ratio for comparison with the solar ratio.

  9. Archaeological sites as indicators of ancient shorelines

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Vora, K.H.; Gaur, A.S.; Sundaresh; Tripati, S.

    -Type text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1 Archaeological Sites as Indicators of Ancient Shorelines K H Vora, A. S. Gnur. Sundaresh and S. Tripati National Institute of Oceanogr-aplzy, Dona Paula, Goa Ernail: Abstract During the late... Coastal areas of the continents have been the focal points of the emergence of the civilization. For in- stance, the Indian Ocean witnessed the rise of 3 major the Bronze Age Civilizations around it during the mid- Holocene period. Ocean has played...

  10. The Charm of An Ancient Southern City

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    AN artistic narrow bridge winds into a place of pavilions, terraces and open halls, all under the pleasant shade of green trees. This is Mist-Water Pavilion Park in Gantang Lake in the city of Jiujiang, Jiangxi Province. When you stand here in the quiet and elegant historic garden and look out over the water on all four sides, you can’t help but think of the ancient war that took place on this very spot 1,700 years ago. During the Three Kingdoms Period (220-280), this was

  11. The astronomical orientation of ancient Greek temples. (United States)

    Salt, Alun M


    Despite its appearing to be a simple question to answer, there has been no consensus as to whether or not the alignments of ancient Greek temples reflect astronomical intentions. Here I present the results of a survey of archaic and classical Greek temples in Sicily and compare them with temples in Greece. Using a binomial test I show strong evidence that there is a preference for solar orientations. I then speculate that differences in alignment patterns between Sicily and Greece reflect differing pressures in the expression of ethnic identity.

  12. Surgical history of ancient China: part 1. (United States)

    Fu, Louis


    Although surgery was an accepted and quite proficient craft very early on in Chinese history, it has deteriorated through the ages. Despite the fact that anaesthetic agents in major surgery were employed during the third century, Chinese surgery is conspicuous by its stagnation. Reverence for the dead, filial piety, abhorrence of shedding blood and other conservative attitudes make it impossible for any accurate knowledge of the human anatomy and physiology, without which surgery cannot progress. This article surveys some highlights in the history of surgery in ancient China and examines the factors responsible for its decline. The second concluding part deals with orthopaedics.

  13. Human Nature Evil in Ancient Western Literature

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    Whether man is good or evil by nature is a constant topic tophilosophers and writers. Is a man born virtuous or evil? What onearth is human nature? Is the origin of human nature kind or wicked?People have been debating over this topic for centuries. Theseseemingly simple questions have perplexed those Great Minds forthousands of years in European countries and are the constant themesof literary works as well. The problem of human nature is the deepestof the issues regarding human beings which have long been underdiscussion since ancient time.

  14. PIXE analysis of ancient Chinese Changsha porcelain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lin, E.K.; Yu, Y.C.; Wang, C.W.; Liu, T.Y.; Wu, C.M.; Chen, K.M.; Lin, S.S


    In this work, proton induced X-ray emission (PIXE) method was applied for the analysis of ancient Chinese Changsha porcelain produced in the Tang dynasty (AD 618-907). A collection of glazed potsherds was obtained in the complex of the famous kiln site at Tongguan, Changsha city, Hunan province. Studies of elemental composition were carried out on ten selected Changsha potsherds. Minor and trace elements such as Ti, Mn, Fe, Co, Cu, Rb, Sr, and Zr in the material of the porcelain glaze were determined. Variation of these elements from sample to sample was investigated. Details of results are presented and discussed.

  15. Origin of Chinese ancient glasses——study on the earliest Chinese ancient glasses

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    GAN Fuxi; CHENG Huansheng; LI Qinghui


    The earliest Chinese ancient glasses before the West Han Dynasty (200 BC) from different regions are studied. The glass samples were unearthed from Hunan, Hubei, Yunnan, Sichuan, Guizhou, Guangdong and Xinjiang of China. The chemical composition of these glasses samples is analyzed by proton induced X-ray emission (PIXE) technique, energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence (EDXRF) method and inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry (ICP-AES). It is shown that the glass chemical compositions belong to barium-lead silicate BaO-PbO-SiO2, potash soda lime silicate K2O (Na2O)-CaO-SiO2 (K2O/Na2O>1), soda potash lime silicate Na2O (K2O)-CaO-SiO2 (K2O/Na2O<1) and potash silicate K2O-SiO2 glass systems, respectively. The origins of the earliest Chinese ancient glasses are discussed from the archaeological and historical points of view. These four types of Chinese ancient glasses were all made in Chinese territory using local raw materials. The glass preparation technology was related to the Chinese ancient bronze metallurgy and proto-porcelain glaze technology. The glass technology relationship between the East and the West is analyzed at the same time.

  16. Structure and function of mammalian cilia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Satir, Peter; Christensen, Søren T


    In the past half century, beginning with electron microscopic studies of 9 + 2 motile and 9 + 0 primary cilia, novel insights have been obtained regarding the structure and function of mammalian cilia. All cilia can now be viewed as sensory cellular antennae that coordinate a large number...... of cellular signaling pathways, sometimes coupling the signaling to ciliary motility or alternatively to cell division and differentiation. This view has had unanticipated consequences for our understanding of developmental processes and human disease....

  17. Cell-surface remodelling during mammalian erythropoiesis. (United States)

    Wraith, D C; Chesterton, C J


    Current evidence suggests that the major cell-surface modification occurring during mammalian erythropoiesis could be generated by two separate mechanisms: either selective loss of membrane proteins during enucleation or endocytosis at the subsequent reticulocyte and erythrocyte stages. The former idea was tested by collecting developing rabbit erythroid cells before and after the enucleation step and comparing their cell-surface protein composition via radiolabelling and electrophoresis. Few changes were observed. Our data thus lend support to the endocytosis mechanism.

  18. Evolution of the mammalian lysozyme gene family

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Biegel Jason M


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Lysozyme c (chicken-type lysozyme has an important role in host defense, and has been extensively studied as a model in molecular biology, enzymology, protein chemistry, and crystallography. Traditionally, lysozyme c has been considered to be part of a small family that includes genes for two other proteins, lactalbumin, which is found only in mammals, and calcium-binding lysozyme, which is found in only a few species of birds and mammals. More recently, additional testes-expressed members of this family have been identified in human and mouse, suggesting that the mammalian lysozyme gene family is larger than previously known. Results Here we characterize the extent and diversity of the lysozyme gene family in the genomes of phylogenetically diverse mammals, and show that this family contains at least eight different genes that likely duplicated prior to the diversification of extant mammals. These duplicated genes have largely been maintained, both in intron-exon structure and in genomic context, throughout mammalian evolution. Conclusions The mammalian lysozyme gene family is much larger than previously appreciated and consists of at least eight distinct genes scattered around the genome. Since the lysozyme c and lactalbumin proteins have acquired very different functions during evolution, it is likely that many of the other members of the lysozyme-like family will also have diverse and unexpected biological properties.

  19. Some principles of regeneration in mammalian systems. (United States)

    Carlson, Bruce M


    This article presents some general principles underlying regenerative phenomena in vertebrates, starting with the epimorphic regeneration of the amphibian limb and continuing with tissue and organ regeneration in mammals. Epimorphic regeneration following limb amputation involves wound healing, followed shortly by a phase of dedifferentiation that leads to the formation of a regeneration blastema. Up to the point of blastema formation, dedifferentiation is guided by unique regenerative pathways, but the overall developmental controls underlying limb formation from the blastema generally recapitulate those of embryonic limb development. Damaged mammalian tissues do not form a blastema. At the cellular level, differentiation follows a pattern close to that seen in the embryo, but at the level of the tissue and organ, regeneration is strongly influenced by conditions inherent in the local environment. In some mammalian systems, such as the liver, parenchymal cells contribute progeny to the regenerate. In others, e.g., skeletal muscle and bone, tissue-specific progenitor cells constitute the main source of regenerating cells. The substrate on which regeneration occurs plays a very important role in determining the course of regeneration. Epimorphic regeneration usually produces an exact replica of the structure that was lost, but in mammalian tissue regeneration the form of the regenerate is largely determined by the mechanical environment acting on the regenerating tissue, and it is normally an imperfect replica of the original. In organ hypertophy, such as that occurring after hepatic resection, the remaining liver mass enlarges, but there is no attempt to restore the original form.

  20. Aneuploidy in mammalian somatic cells in vivo. (United States)

    Cimino, M C; Tice, R R; Liang, J C


    Aneuploidy is an important potential source of human disease and of reproductive failure. Nevertheless, the ability of chemical agents to induce aneuploidy has been investigated only sporadically in intact (whole-animal) mammalian systems. A search of the available literature from the EMCT Aneuploidy File (for years 1970-1983) provided 112 papers that dealt with aneuploidy in mammalian somatic cells in vivo. 59 of these papers did not meet minimal criteria for analysis and were rejected from subsequent review. Of the remaining 53 papers that dealt with aneuploidy induction by chemical agents in mammalian somatic cells in vivo, only 3 (6%) contained data that were considered to be supported conclusively by adequate study designs, execution, and reporting. These 3 papers dealt with 2 chemicals, one of which, mercury, was negative for aneuploidy induction in humans, and the other, pyrimethamine, was positive in an experimental rodent study. The majority of papers (94%) were considered inconclusive for a variety of reasons. The most common reasons for calling a study inconclusive were (a) combining data on hyperploidy with those on hypoploidy and/or polyploidy, (b) an inadequate or unspecified number of animals and/or cells per animal scored per treatment group, and (c) poor data presentation such that animal-to-animal variability could not be assessed. Suggestions for protocol development are made, and the future directions of research into aneuploidy induction are discussed.

  1. Epigenetic regulation of the mammalian cell.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keith Baverstock

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Understanding how mammalian cells are regulated epigenetically to express phenotype is a priority. The cellular phenotypic transition, induced by ionising radiation, from a normal cell to the genomic instability phenotype, where the ability to replicate the genotype accurately is compromised, illustrates important features of epigenetic regulation. Based on this phenomenon and earlier work we propose a model to describe the mammalian cell as a self assembled open system operating in an environment that includes its genotype, neighbouring cells and beyond. Phenotype is represented by high dimensional attractors, evolutionarily conditioned for stability and robustness and contingent on rules of engagement between gene products encoded in the genetic network. METHODOLOGY/FINDINGS: We describe how this system functions and note the indeterminacy and fluidity of its internal workings which place it in the logical reasoning framework of predicative logic. We find that the hypothesis is supported by evidence from cell and molecular biology. CONCLUSIONS: Epigenetic regulation and memory are fundamentally physical, as opposed to chemical, processes and the transition to genomic instability is an important feature of mammalian cells with probable fundamental relevance to speciation and carcinogenesis. A source of evolutionarily selectable variation, in terms of the rules of engagement between gene products, is seen as more likely to have greater prominence than genetic variation in an evolutionary context. As this epigenetic variation is based on attractor states phenotypic changes are not gradual; a phenotypic transition can involve the changed contribution of several gene products in a single step.

  2. Antikythera Mechanism and the Ancient World

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. N. Safronov


    Full Text Available In this historical review, the opinions of Ancient Greece philosophers, astronomers, and poets such as Thales Milesian, Pythagoras, Plato, Eudoxus, Aristotle, Archimedes, Cicero, Diogenes Laertius, Iamblichus, Plutarch, Homer, and Aratus about the planet position calculations and about the possibility of predictions of natural phenomena are analyzed. The planet positions were predicted before Eudoxus (probably before Philolaus by a spindle of Ananke and after Eudoxus by Antikythera mechanism. Following Pythagoras and Plato, it is established that the regular seismoacoustic observations were performed. In the Ancient World in the Mediterranean area, there was an extensive network of acoustic stations (~10 pcs, which were located in close proximity to the geologic faults. Also, it is shown that the ship that was carrying Antikythera mechanism (A-Ship was built in 244 BC in Syracuse with direct participation of Archimedes and Archias from Corinthian. Later, the A-Ship was a part of the Roman Republic safety system. The grain volumes, which were delivered to Rome city by large grain vessels, and the population of Rome city in the period 74–71 BC were estimated. Planetary calculator might be used for the chronology of the historical events as a backward prediction in addition to present Radiocarbon dating and Dendrochronology methods.

  3. Acoustical measurements in ancient Roman theatres (United States)

    Farnetani, Andrea; Fausti, Patrizio; Pompoli, Roberto; Prodi, Nicola


    The Greek and Roman theatres are among the most precious and spectacular items of cultural heritage in the Mediterranean countries. The theatres are famous not only for their impressive architecture, but also for the acoustic qualities. For this reason it is important to consider these theatres as an acoustical heritage and to study their sound field. Within the activities of the ERATO (identification Evaluation and Revival of the Acoustical heritage of ancient Theatres and Odea) project, acoustical measurements were taken in well-preserved ancient Roman theatres at Aspendos (Turkey) and Jerash (Jordan). Roman theatres have an impressive stage building that forms a back wall in the orchestra area, and it was found that, from the analysis of the acoustical parameters, the reverberation time (e.g., 1.7 s at middle frequencies in the theatre of Aspendos) is quite long compared not only with other open-space theatres but also with closed spaces. Contrary to modern halls the clarity is high and this fact, together with a low sound level in most of the seats, gives the sound field a unique character.

  4. Ancient and Medieval Earth in Armenia (United States)

    Farmanyan, S. V.


    Humankind has always sought to recognize the nature of various sky related phenomena and tried to give them explanations. The purpose of this study is to identify ancient Armenians' pantheistic and cosmological perceptions, world view, notions and beliefs related to the Earth. The paper focuses on the structure of the Earth and many other phenomena of nature that have always been on a major influence on ancient Armenians thinking. In this paper we have compared the term Earth in 31 languages. By discussing and comparing Universe structure in various regional traditions, myths, folk songs and phraseological units we very often came across to "Seven Heavens" (Seven heavens is a part of religious cosmology found in many major religions such as Islam, Judaism, Hinduism and Christianity (namely Catholicism) and "Seven Earths". Armenians in their turn divided Earth and Heavens into seven layers. And in science too, both the Earth and the Heavens have 7 layers. The Seven Heavens refer to the layers of our atmosphere. The Seven Earths refer to the layers of the Earth (from core to crust), as well as seven continents. We conclude that the perception of celestial objects varies from culture to culture and preastronomy had a significant impact on humankind, particularly on cultural diversities.

  5. Study on the structures and illumination characteristics of Chinese ancient oil lamps (United States)

    Zhu, Zhiqiang; Zhan, Qingxuan


    Chinese ancient firelight lighting had a long history in which developed technologies were applied. The paper concerns itself with a study of Chinese ancient firelight lighting lamps, including the structures and illuminating characteristics of ancient oil lamps.

  6. Jin Quan Museum Gives New Life to Ancient Coins

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    The saying goes that ""ancient coins are living history"". The rusty ancient coins that appeared in China's 5,000 years of history, such as seashells, Bu Bi (spade-shaped money), Dao Bi (knife-shaped money), Banliang coins from Qin Dynasty and Wuzhu coins from Han Dynasty, are all the reflections of the China's splendid traditions in politics,

  7. An Ancient Inca Tax and Metallurgy in Peru (United States)

    Journal of Chemical Education, 2007


    The discovery of ancient Inca tax rulers and other metallurgical objects in Peru show that the ancient civilizations of the country smelted metals. The analysis shows that the smelters in Peru switched from the production of copper to silver after a tax was imposed on them by the Inca rulers.

  8. Deep sequencing of RNA from ancient maize kernels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fordyce, Sarah Louise; Avila Arcos, Maria del Carmen; Rasmussen, Morten


    The characterization of biomolecules from ancient samples can shed otherwise unobtainable insights into the past. Despite the fundamental role of transcriptomal change in evolution, the potential of ancient RNA remains unexploited - perhaps due to dogma associated with the fragility of RNA. We hy...

  9. Exploring Ancient Skies An Encyclopedic Survey of Archaeoastronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Kelley, David H


    Exploring Ancient Skies brings together the methods of archaeology and the insights of modern astronomy to explore the science of astronomy as it was practiced in various cultures prior to the invention of the telescope. The book reviews an enormous and growing body of literature on the cultures of the ancient Mediterranean, the Far East, and the New World (particularly Mesoamerica), putting the ancient astronomical materials into their archaeological and cultural contexts. The authors begin with an overview of the field and proceed to essential aspects of naked-eye astronomy, followed by an examination of specific cultures. The book concludes by taking into account the purposes of ancient astronomy: astrology, navigation, calendar regulation, and (not least) the understanding of our place and role in the universe. Skies are recreated to display critical events as they would have appeared to ancient observers - events such as the supernova of 1054, the 'lion horoscope' or the 'Star of Bethlehem.' Exploring An...

  10. Mitochondrial DNA analysis of ancient Sampula population in Xinjiang

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    The archaeological site of Sampula cemetery was located about 14 km to the southwest of the Luo County in Xinjiang Khotan, China, belonging to the ancient Yutian kingdom. 14C analysis showed that this cemetery was used from 217 B.C. to 283 A.D.Ancient DNA was analyzed by 364 bp of the mitochondrial DNA hypervariable region Ⅰ (mtDNA HVR-Ⅰ), and by six restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) sites of mtDNA coding region. We successfully extracted and sequenced intact stretches of maternally inherited mtDNA from 13 out of 16 ancient Sampula samples. The analysis of mtDNA haplogroup distribution showed that the ancient Sampula was a complex population with both European and Asian characteristics. Median joining network of U3 sub-haplogroup and multi-dimensional scaling analysis all showed that the ancient Sampula had maternal relationship with Ossetian and Iranian.

  11. [Changes of marriage age in ancient China]. (United States)

    Zhang, D


    The changes in age of marriage in ancient China can be classified into 3 periods. Around 680 B.C., the government set the age of marriage at 20 for men and at 15 for women. Even though it was written in the works of the Confucian school that men should marry at 30 and women at 20, it was never really followed. The Wei and Jin dynasties provided the longest periods of war and social instability. Large numbers of population died because of war or famine. Because heavy taxes were collected on each member of family, many families did not report marriage or childbirth. In order to encourage childbirth, the government reduced the age of marriage to 15 for men and 13 for women. Administrative and legislative regulation were introduced to force people to marry early, especially women. Incentives were given to families with more women. These policies was enforced due to the imbalance of the sex ratio and reduction of population size. As female infanticides were prevalent because of differential values placed on male and female children, it was difficult for men to find partners to marry. Shortage of women was also the result of the polygamy of the rich and the aristocracy. The imbalance of the sex ratio forced women to marry early. Nevertheless, women getting married too early were not fertile. Infant or child mortality was high among children of young mothers. From the Song to the Ching dynasties, the age of marriage was set at 16 for men and 14 for women. In the ancient times, the population of China was around 60-70 million before the Ching dynasty. Generally speaking, the population size was small. Early marriage was necessary and feasible. Even though fertility in ancient times was high, mortality has high also. Life expectancy ranged form 22 to 35. People needed to marry early and have children early to replace themselves. On the other hand, large land areas and inefficient production tools required a larger labor force. Large population size also represented

  12. Mapping The Ancient Maya Landscape From Space (United States)

    Sever, Tom; Arnold, James E. (Technical Monitor)


    The Peten region of northern Guatemala is one of the last places on earth where major archeological sites remain to be discovered. It was in this region that the Maya civilization began, flourished, and abruptly disappeared. Remote sensing technology is helping to locate and map ancient Maya sites that are threatened today by accelerating deforestation and looting. Thematic Mapper and IKONOS satellite and airborne Star3-I radar data, combined with Global Positioning System (GPS) technology, are successfully detecting ancient Maya features such as cities, roadways, canals, and water reservoirs. Satellite imagery is also being used to map the bajos, which are seasonally flooded swamps that cover over 40% of the land surface. The use of bajos for farming has been a source of debate within the professional community for many years. But the recent detection and verification of cultural features within the bajo system by our research team are providing conclusive evidence that the ancient Maya had adapted well to wetland environments from the earliest times and utilized them until the time of the Maya collapse. The use of the bajos for farming is also an important resource for the future of the current inhabitants who are experiencing rapid population growth. Remote sensing imagery is also demonstrating that in the Preclassic period (600 BC- AD 250), the Maya had already achieved a high organizational level as evidenced by the construction of massive temples and an elaborate inter-connecting roadway system. Although they experienced several setbacks such as droughts and hurricanes, the Maya nevertheless managed the delicate forest ecosystem successfully for several centuries. However, around AD 800, something happened to the Maya to cause their rapid decline and eventual disappearance from the region. The evidence indicates that at this time there was increased climatic dryness, extensive deforestation, overpopulation, and widespread warfare. This raises a question that

  13. Cosmologies of the ancient Mediterranean world

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John T. Fitzgerald


    Full Text Available Cosmology is concerned with the order of the universe and seeks to provide an account, not only of that order, but also of the mind or reason behind it. In antiquity, the cosmos was usually understood religiously, such that the cosmologies of the ancient Mediterranean world were either religious in nature or constituted a reaction to a religiously conceived understanding of the structures of the universe. The oldest form in which ancient cosmologies occur is myth, which, owing to its elasticity as a form, enabled them to be appropriated, adapted and used by different groups. In addition, different cosmologies co-existed within the same ancient culture, each having an authoritative status. This article provides an introductory overview of these cosmological myths and argues that a comparative approach is the most fruitful way to study them. Emphasis is given to certain prominent cosmological topics, including theogony (the genesis of the divine or the relationship of the divine to the cosmos, cosmogony (the genesis of the cosmos, and anthropogony (the origin of humans within the cosmos. Although these myths vary greatly in terms of content and how they envision the origin of the cosmos, many of them depict death as part of the structure of the universe.Kosmologie het te doen met die orde van die heelal en wil rekenskap gee van hierdie orde en ook van die bewussyn daaragter. In die antieke tyd is die kosmos gewoonlik godsdienstig verstaan, met die gevolg dat die kosmologieë van die antieke Mediterreense wêreld óf ’n godsdienstige aard gehad het óf bestaan het uit ’n reaksie op ’n godsdienstig-geskepte begrip van die strukture van die heelal. Mites was die oudste vorm waarin antieke kosmologieë voorkom wat vanweë hulle plooibaarheid dit bewerk het dat hierdie kosmologieë deur verskillende groepe toegeëien, aangepas en gebruik kon word. Hierbenewens het verskillende kosmologieë in die antieke kultuur langs mekaar bestaan – elkeen

  14. Protein and genome evolution in Mammalian cells for biotechnology applications. (United States)

    Majors, Brian S; Chiang, Gisela G; Betenbaugh, Michael J


    Mutation and selection are the essential steps of evolution. Researchers have long used in vitro mutagenesis, expression, and selection techniques in laboratory bacteria and yeast cultures to evolve proteins with new properties, termed directed evolution. Unfortunately, the nature of mammalian cells makes applying these mutagenesis and whole-organism evolution techniques to mammalian protein expression systems laborious and time consuming. Mammalian evolution systems would be useful to test unique mammalian cell proteins and protein characteristics, such as complex glycosylation. Protein evolution in mammalian cells would allow for generation of novel diagnostic tools and designer polypeptides that can only be tested in a mammalian expression system. Recent advances have shown that mammalian cells of the immune system can be utilized to evolve transgenes during their natural mutagenesis processes, thus creating proteins with unique properties, such as fluorescence. On a more global level, researchers have shown that mutation systems that affect the entire genome of a mammalian cell can give rise to cells with unique phenotypes suitable for commercial processes. This review examines the advances in mammalian cell and protein evolution and the application of this work toward advances in commercial mammalian cell biotechnology.

  15. Urea: new questions about an ancient solute. (United States)

    Bagnasco, S M


    Urea recycling and counter-current exchange within the renal tubular, vascular and interstitial compartments help maintain high levels of this solute in the renal medulla, that are crucial for the production of concentrated urine. The role of urea in physiological and pathological conditions is still unclear, although new information is becoming available. Several urea transporters have been identified that mediate facilitated transport of urea across biological membranes in the mammalian kidney, in amphibians, and in elasmobranchs. Evidence that urea transporters may be expressed in other mammalian organs is also beginning to emerge. The mechanisms involved in the regulation of urea transport are incompletely understood. In this respect, the structural and functional characterization of individual transporters is providing the basis to identify specific regulatory factors. Urea can be viewed as a perturbing osmolyte in the renal inner medulla, and the mechanisms of adaptation of renal cells to high concentration of this destabilizing solute are being investigated. Urea-specific signaling pathways have been identified, that could contribute to clarify how cells handle urea.

  16. Mammalian niche conservation through deep time.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larisa R G DeSantis

    Full Text Available Climate change alters species distributions, causing plants and animals to move north or to higher elevations with current warming. Bioclimatic models predict species distributions based on extant realized niches and assume niche conservation. Here, we evaluate if proxies for niches (i.e., range areas are conserved at the family level through deep time, from the Eocene to the Pleistocene. We analyze the occurrence of all mammalian families in the continental USA, calculating range area, percent range area occupied, range area rank, and range polygon centroids during each epoch. Percent range area occupied significantly increases from the Oligocene to the Miocene and again from the Pliocene to the Pleistocene; however, mammalian families maintain statistical concordance between rank orders across time. Families with greater taxonomic diversity occupy a greater percent of available range area during each epoch and net changes in taxonomic diversity are significantly positively related to changes in percent range area occupied from the Eocene to the Pleistocene. Furthermore, gains and losses in generic and species diversity are remarkably consistent with ~2.3 species gained per generic increase. Centroids demonstrate southeastern shifts from the Eocene through the Pleistocene that may correspond to major environmental events and/or climate changes during the Cenozoic. These results demonstrate range conservation at the family level and support the idea that niche conservation at higher taxonomic levels operates over deep time and may be controlled by life history traits. Furthermore, families containing megafauna and/or terminal Pleistocene extinction victims do not incur significantly greater declines in range area rank than families containing only smaller taxa and/or only survivors, from the Pliocene to Pleistocene. Collectively, these data evince the resilience of families to climate and/or environmental change in deep time, the absence of

  17. The Case of the Missing Ancient Fungal Polyploids. (United States)

    Campbell, Matthew A; Ganley, Austen R D; Gabaldón, Toni; Cox, Murray P


    Polyploidy-the increase in the number of whole chromosome sets-is an important evolutionary force in eukaryotes. Polyploidy is well recognized throughout the evolutionary history of plants and animals, where several ancient events have been hypothesized to be drivers of major evolutionary radiations. However, fungi provide a striking contrast: while numerous recent polyploids have been documented, ancient fungal polyploidy is virtually unknown. We present a survey of known fungal polyploids that confirms the absence of ancient fungal polyploidy events. Three hypotheses may explain this finding. First, ancient fungal polyploids are indeed rare, with unique aspects of fungal biology providing similar benefits without genome duplication. Second, fungal polyploids are not successful in the long term, leading to few extant species derived from ancient polyploidy events. Third, ancient fungal polyploids are difficult to detect, causing the real contribution of polyploidy to fungal evolution to be underappreciated. We consider each of these hypotheses in turn and propose that failure to detect ancient events is the most likely reason for the lack of observed ancient fungal polyploids. We examine whether existing data can provide evidence for previously unrecognized ancient fungal polyploidy events but discover that current resources are too limited. We contend that establishing whether unrecognized ancient fungal polyploidy events exist is important to ascertain whether polyploidy has played a key role in the evolution of the extensive complexity and diversity observed in fungi today and, thus, whether polyploidy is a driver of evolutionary diversifications across eukaryotes. Therefore, we conclude by suggesting ways to test the hypothesis that there are unrecognized polyploidy events in the deep evolutionary history of the fungi.

  18. Preservation of mammalian germ plasm by freezing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mazur, P.


    Embryos of several mammalian species can be frozen to -196/sup 0/C (or below) by procedures that result in the thawed embryos being indistinguishable from their unfrozen counterparts. The survival often exceeds 90%, and in liquid nitrogen it should remain at that high level for centuries. Sublethal biochemical changes are also precluded at -196/sup 0/C. No developmental abnormalities have been detected in mouse offspring derived from frozen-thawed embryos, and, since all the manipulations are carried out on the preimplantation stages, none would be expected.

  19. Acoustophoretic Synchronization of Mammalian Cells in Microchannels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thévoz, P.; Adams, J.D.; Shea, H.


    We report the first use of ultrasonic standing waves to achieve cell cycle phase synchronization in mammalian cells in a high-throughput and reagent-free manner. The acoustophoretic cell synchronization (ACS) device utilizes volume-dependent acoustic radiation force within a microchannel...... to selectively purify target cells of desired phase from an asynchronous mixture based on cell cycle-dependent fluctuations in size. We show that ultrasonic separation allows for gentle, scalable, and label-free synchronization with high G1 phase synchrony (84%) and throughput (3 × 106 cells/h per microchannel)....

  20. Mammalian developmental genetics in the twentieth century. (United States)

    Artzt, Karen


    This Perspectives is a review of the breathtaking history of mammalian genetics in the past century and, in particular, of the ways in which genetic thinking has illuminated aspects of mouse development. To illustrate the power of that thinking, selected hypothesis-driven experiments and technical advances are discussed. Also included in this account are the beginnings of mouse genetics at the Bussey Institute, Columbia University, and The Jackson Laboratory and a retrospective discussion of one of the classic problems in developmental genetics, the T/t complex and its genetic enigmas.

  1. Mammalian odorant receptors: functional evolution and variation. (United States)

    Jiang, Yue; Matsunami, Hiroaki


    In mammals, the perception of smell starts with the activation of odorant receptors (ORs) by volatile molecules in the environment. The mammalian OR repertoire has been subject to rapid evolution, and is highly diverse within the human population. Recent advances in the functional expression and ligand identification of ORs allow for functional analysis of OR evolution, and reveal that changes in OR protein sequences translate into high degrees of functional variations. Moreover, in several cases the functional variation of a single OR affects the perception of its cognate odor ligand, providing clues as to how an odor is coded at the receptor level.

  2. Chlorpromazine inhibits mitosis of mammalian cells. (United States)

    Boder, G B; Paul, D C; Williams, D C


    Chlorpromazine (CPZ) at minimally effective concentrations accumulates mammalian cells in mitosis without lethal effects on the cells. Star-metaphase morphology similar to effects seen with classical antimitotic compounds probably results from the preferential action of CPZ on a specific class of microtubules--the pole-to-pole microtubules of the mitotic spindle. At CPZ concentrations of 8 X 10(-6) M, flow cytometry indicates no effect of CPZ on the progress of cells through phases of the cell cycle other than mitosis (M). These results suggest a possible mechanism for toxic side effects of CPZ in man such as granulocytopenia and light sensitization.

  3. Optogenetics for gene expression in mammalian cells. (United States)

    Müller, Konrad; Naumann, Sebastian; Weber, Wilfried; Zurbriggen, Matias D


    Molecular switches that are controlled by chemicals have evolved as central research instruments in mammalian cell biology. However, these tools are limited in terms of their spatiotemporal resolution due to freely diffusing inducers. These limitations have recently been addressed by the development of optogenetic, genetically encoded, and light-responsive tools that can be controlled with the unprecedented spatiotemporal precision of light. In this article, we first provide a brief overview of currently available optogenetic tools that have been designed to control diverse cellular processes. Then, we focus on recent developments in light-controlled gene expression technologies and provide the reader with a guideline for choosing the most suitable gene expression system.

  4. Legacy of the Ancient World: An Educational Guide. Understanding Ancient Culture through Art at the Tampa Museum of Art. (United States)

    Whitelaw, R. Lynn

    Among the many contributions made by Ancient Greeks and Romans to contemporary life, are those which influence art, architecture, literature, philosophy, mathematics and science, theater, athletics, religion, and the founding of democracy. The Tampa Museum of Art's classical collection offers a unique opportunity to learn about Ancient Greeks and…

  5. Ancient Forests and the Tree-Ring Reconstruction of Past Climate (Ancient Forests and Dendroclimatology)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stahle, David (Tree-Ring Laboratory, University of Arkansas)


    The original presettlement forests of North America have been dramatically altered, but thousands of unmolested ancient forests survive on remote or noncommercial terrain, including dry-site eastern hardwoods such as chestnut oak and post oak, the pinyon-juniper woodlands of the semiarid West, oak woodlands of California and in northeast Mexico, and the boreal forests of Canada and Alaska. Long tree-ring chronologies derived from these ancient forest remnants provide irreplaceable archives of environmental variability which are crucial for evaluating present and future change. Temperature sensitive tree -ring chronologies from cold treeline environments place 20th century warming into long historical perspective, and moisture sensitive tree-ring chronologies provide analogs to the decadal moisture regimes of the 20th century. These tree-ring data suggests that the 16th century megadrought was the most severe-sustained drought to impact North America in 1500 years, and had huge environmental and social impacts at the dawn of European settlement.

  6. Ancient engineers' inventions precursors of the present

    CERN Document Server

    Rossi, Cesare


    This book describes the inventions and designs of ancient engineers who are the precursors of the present. The period ranges mainly from 300 B.C. to 1600 A.D. with several exceptions. Many of the oldest inventions are documented by archaeological finds, often very little known, mainly from Pompeii, Herculaneum and Stabiae and reveal a surprising modernity in their conception. Most of the inventions presented in the first four parts of the book were conceived up to the late Roman Empire and may be considered as milestones, each in their respective field. The fifth part concentrates on more recent centuries. The sixth part deals with some building construction techniques. Generally, for each of the presented inventions, three elements of research and reference are provided: written documents (the classics), iconic references (coins, bas-reliefs, etc.) and archaeological findings. The authors did not write this book for engineers only; hence they describe all the devices without assuming wide technical knowledge...

  7. Damage and repair of ancient DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mitchell, David; Willerslev, Eske; Hansen, Anders


    , and extensive degradation. In the course of this review, we will discuss the current aDNA literature describing the importance of aDNA studies as they relate to important biological questions and the difficulties associated with extracting useful information from highly degraded and damaged substrates derived......Under certain conditions small amounts of DNA can survive for long periods of time and can be used as polymerase chain reaction (PCR) substrates for the study of phylogenetic relationships and population genetics of extinct plants and animals, including hominids. Because of extensive DNA...... degradation, these studies are limited to species that lived within the past 10(4)-10(5) years (Late Pleistocene), although DNA sequences from 10(6) years have been reported. Ancient DNA (aDNA) has been used to study phylogenetic relationships of protists, fungi, algae, plants, and higher eukaryotes...

  8. Were the ancient Romans art forgers?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Casemen


    Full Text Available A popularly held tenet in the historical record on art is that the practice of forgery began in ancient Rome, where sculptures made by craftsmen of the day were passed off as classical Greek antiquities. However, revisionist scholars in recent decades have challenged this perspective. One line of criticism denies that forgery was present in Rome, asserting that the evidence for it has been misunderstood. A softer line suggests that while the traditional view overstates the case, there is still reason to accept that the culture of Rome harbored art forgery. This article assesses the competing claims in light of literary references by Roman authors, physical evidence including inscriptions on sculptures, the phenomenon of Corinthian bronze, the nature of Roman copying, social and economic conditions necessary for art forgery to arise, and what art forgery consists of by definition.

  9. Confocal Terahertz Imaging of Ancient Manuscripts (United States)

    Flammini, Mariano; Bonsi, Claudia; Ciano, Chiara; Giliberti, Valeria; Pontecorvo, Emanuele; Italia, Paola; DelRe, Eugenio; Ortolani, Michele


    Terahertz imaging has the potential to identify and decipher portions of ancient manuscripts, which may be unreadable at infrared and visible wavelengths. We use a scanning confocal terahertz microscope to scan a medieval parchment with music notes and pentagrams written with different inks. The microscope is based on a continuous-wave solid-state source at 0.3 THz, emitting in the free space with a horn antenna, and a high numerical-aperture ellipsoidal reflector. We present terahertz images with diffraction-limited lateral resolution of approximately 0.5 mm, where the different inks all give similar high contrast. Symbols written on the "verso" side of the parchment, barely glimpsed in the near-infrared photograph, leave a clear imprint in the terahertz images. Artifacts due to imperfect flatness of the parchment are also briefly discussed.

  10. The Ancient Evolutionary History of Polyomaviruses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher B Buck


    Full Text Available Polyomaviruses are a family of DNA tumor viruses that are known to infect mammals and birds. To investigate the deeper evolutionary history of the family, we used a combination of viral metagenomics, bioinformatics, and structural modeling approaches to identify and characterize polyomavirus sequences associated with fish and arthropods. Analyses drawing upon the divergent new sequences indicate that polyomaviruses have been gradually co-evolving with their animal hosts for at least half a billion years. Phylogenetic analyses of individual polyomavirus genes suggest that some modern polyomavirus species arose after ancient recombination events involving distantly related polyomavirus lineages. The improved evolutionary model provides a useful platform for developing a more accurate taxonomic classification system for the viral family Polyomaviridae.

  11. Optical spectroscopy of ancient paper and textiles (United States)

    Missori, M.


    Ancient paper and textiles represent a striking example of optically inhomogenous materials whose optical responses are strongly governed by scattering effects. In order to recover the absorption coefficient from non-invasive and non-destructive reflectance measurements a specific approach based on Kubelka-Munk two-flux theory must be applied. In this way quantitative chemical information, such as chromophores concentration, can be obtained, as well as quantitative spectra of additional substances such as pigments or dyes. Results on a folio of the Codex on the Flight of Birds by Leonardo da Vinci and a linen cloth dated back to 1653 and called the Shroud of Arquata, a copy of the Shroud of Turin, will be presented.

  12. Ancient Maya astronomical tables from Xultun, Guatemala. (United States)

    Saturno, William A; Stuart, David; Aveni, Anthony F; Rossi, Franco


    Maya astronomical tables are recognized in bark-paper books from the Late Postclassic period (1300 to 1521 C.E.), but Classic period (200 to 900 C.E.) precursors have not been found. In 2011, a small painted room was excavated at the extensive ancient Maya ruins of Xultun, Guatemala, dating to the early 9th century C.E. The walls and ceiling of the room are painted with several human figures. Two walls also display a large number of delicate black, red, and incised hieroglyphs. Many of these hieroglyphs are calendrical in nature and relate astronomical computations, including at least two tables concerning the movement of the Moon, and perhaps Mars and Venus. These apparently represent early astronomical tables and may shed light on the later books.

  13. Coal and cremation in ancient Peru (United States)

    Brooks, William E.


    After my visit to the adobe-walled archaeological site of Chan Chan, near Trujillo in northern Peru in the summer of 2000 (Geotimes, August 2003), my guide asked if I would like to see the metallurgical furnaces used by the Chimú, ancient residents and master metalsmiths of the region. Chan Chan was the capital of the Chimú Empire (A.D. 1100-1400) and the largest pre-Columbian city in the Americas. These furnaces, my guide explained, were where Andean gold, silver and copper ores were smelted and fabricated into jewelry, masks and plates sought by the Spaniards. We left the main part of the complex, followed a dusty trail, and arrived at a site marked by fresh-looking, redbrown, clinker-like debris.

  14. Study of ancient pottery from Slovakia (United States)

    Lipka, J.; Rausz, J.; Gajdošová, M.; Fusek, G.; Sitek, J.; Hucl, M.


    Ancient pottery samples collected from south-west Slovakia were studied through subjective observation and by Mössbauer spectroscopy. This method is convenient for determining the provenance and the manufacture of pottery. Transformations, induced by firing the clay and characterized by Mössbauer spectroscopy, give valuable information regarding the manufacture as, for instance, the final temperature of firing in it. The relative abundance of Fe2+ and Fe3+ determines the atmosphere used to fire a pottery. It has been found that the determination of the firing atmosphere obtained through the subjective observation is in good agreement with that obtained using Mössbauer spectroscopy. An unfired and fired clay was also investigated.

  15. Evidence of Ancient Blisters in Rocks (United States)


    This image from the panoramic camera on the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit shows scoriaceous rocks (rocks containing holes or cavities) on the ground, as well as a transition from rocky terrain (foreground) to smoother terrain (background). Spirit is heading toward the smoother terrain on its way to the 'Columbia Hills.' The holes in some of the rocks may have resulted from 'blisters' formed by water vapor as it escaped lava. This indicates that the rocks were chilled atop an ancient lava flow. Porous rocks such as these, now appearing in abundance, have not been seen since early in the mission. Scientists believe they may have been covered by crater ejecta. This image was taken on sol 110 (April 24, 2004) at a region dubbed 'site 35.'

  16. Recognition of dementia in ancient China. (United States)

    Liu, Jia; Wang, Lu-Ning; Tian, Jin-Zhou


    A search of previous records in the literatures was done to summarize the opinions for dementia in ancient China. The earliest description of dementia was traced in the Yellow emperor's internal classic, a book written 2000 years ago. Hua Tuo (AD 140-208) in Han Dynasty first denominated "dementia" in the book, Hua Tuo Shen Yi Mi Zhuan. The pathogenesis of dementia could be generalized as the insufficiency of Qi, a flowing energy; the stagnation of phlegm, a harmful liquid substance in the body; and the blood stasis, which were also regarded as therapeutic targets. Therefore, we can conclude that dementia has been recognized and investigated in traditional Chinese medicine, which is definitely before the industrial civilization era.

  17. Ancient bacteria show evidence of DNA repair

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johnson, Sarah Stewart; Hebsgaard, Martin B; Christensen, Torben R


    Recent claims of cultivable ancient bacteria within sealed environments highlight our limited understanding of the mechanisms behind long-term cell survival. It remains unclear how dormancy, a favored explanation for extended cellular persistence, can cope with spontaneous genomic decay over......-term survival of bacteria sealed in frozen conditions for up to one million years. Our results show evidence of bacterial survival in samples up to half a million years in age, making this the oldest independently authenticated DNA to date obtained from viable cells. Additionally, we find strong evidence...... that this long-term survival is closely tied to cellular metabolic activity and DNA repair that over time proves to be superior to dormancy as a mechanism in sustaining bacteria viability....

  18. Homosexuality in ancient and modern Korea. (United States)

    Kim, Young-Gwan; Hahn, Sook-Ja


    This paper examines Korean views on the subject of male homosexuality. Using historical and contemporary sources, it seeks to explain elements of new cultural openness towards homosexuality in modern Korea. Korean people's understanding and knowledge of male homosexuality is ambiguous and limited. In the absence of knowledge and open communication, most Korean people imagine that male homosexuality is an abnormal and impure modern phenomenon. Prejudice and confusion lead most Korean male homosexuals to be estranged from their families, religious communities and non-homosexual peers. Moreover, they are often viewed as the 'carriers' of AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs). The purpose of this paper is to examine current Korean perspectives on male homosexuality by exploring both the ancient history of the practice of male homosexuality and current thinking about homosexual life among Koreans, which has played an important part in the formation of contemporary attitudes toward homosexuality.

  19. [Medicine in ancient Mesopotamia - part 2]. (United States)

    Martins E Silva, J


    The second part embraces exclusively the main characteristics of the medicine in Ancient Mesopotamia, in its main facets: concept of disease, healers and practice. The disease was considered a divine punishment or resultant from a malign influence. Insofar, the medicine began by being preventive, by the use of appropriate amulets or by offerings or sacrifices intending to pacify those malign forces. The treatment of the generality of the diseases privileged the expulsion of those spirits and malign influences from the patient body, purifying it, which was done by the specific intervention of a approximately shipu (clergymanexorcist); not having results, the treatment was continued by the asû (practical healer) that appealed to a group of physical manipulations, limited surgical acts and the administration or application of prescriptions, resultants of the mixture of organic and inorganic substances. In case of failing, the patients (as well as common healthy individuals or rule leaders) could fall back upon a priest diviner (bârû) that, by examination of the organs of an animal especially sacrificed for, would give a final decision about the disease or the future. Besides this more occult facet, nourished in religious faiths and in the magic, the medicine of Ancient Mesopotamia included rational knowledge, certainly as the result of systematic patients observation and semiotic interpretation. From those observations and knowledge referred to the Sumerian period, carefully logged, refined and transmitted to the following generations, it was built a valuable group of texts with the description of symptoms, signs, diagnosis and prognostic of the most common diseases, still identifiable in the present.

  20. Calcium Signaling in Mammalian Eggs at Fertilization. (United States)

    Shirakawa, Hideki; Kikuchi, Takashi; Ito, Masahiko


    The innovation and development of live-cell fluorescence imaging methods have revealed the dynamic aspects of intracellular Ca2+ in a wide variety of cells. The fertilized egg, the very first cell to be a new individual, has long been under extensive investigations utilizing Ca2+ imaging since its early days, and spatiotemporal Ca2+ dynamics and underlying mechanisms of Ca2+ mobilization, as well as physiological roles of Ca2+ at fertilization, have become more or less evident in various animal species. In this article, we illustrate characteristic patterns of Ca2+ dynamics in mammalian gametes and molecular basis for Ca2+ release from intracellular stores leading to the elevation in cytoplasmic Ca2+ concentration, and describe the identity and properties of sperm-borne egg-activating factor in relation to the induction of Ca2+ waves and Ca2+ oscillations, referring to its potential use in artificial egg activation as infertility treatment. In addition, a possible Ca2+ influx-driven mechanism for slow and long-lasting Ca2+ oscillations characteristic of mammalian eggs is proposed, based on the recent experimental findings and mathematical modeling. Cumulative knowledge about the roles of Ca2+ in the egg activation leading to early embryogenesis is summarized, to emphasize the diversity of functions that Ca2+ can perform in a single type of cell.

  1. Ecology and evolution of mammalian biodiversity. (United States)

    Jones, Kate E; Safi, Kamran


    Mammals have incredible biological diversity, showing extreme flexibility in eco-morphology, physiology, life history and behaviour across their evolutionary history. Undoubtedly, mammals play an important role in ecosystems by providing essential services such as regulating insect populations, seed dispersal and pollination and act as indicators of general ecosystem health. However, the macroecological and macroevolutionary processes underpinning past and present biodiversity patterns are only beginning to be explored on a global scale. It is also particularly important, in the face of the global extinction crisis, to understand these processes in order to be able to use this knowledge to prevent future biodiversity loss and loss of ecosystem services. Unfortunately, efforts to understand mammalian biodiversity have been hampered by a lack of data. New data compilations on current species' distributions, ecologies and evolutionary histories now allow an integrated approach to understand this biodiversity. We review and synthesize these new studies, exploring the past and present ecology and evolution of mammalian biodiversity, and use these findings to speculate about the mammals of our future.

  2. Ecology and evolution of mammalian biodiversity (United States)

    Jones, Kate E.; Safi, Kamran


    Mammals have incredible biological diversity, showing extreme flexibility in eco-morphology, physiology, life history and behaviour across their evolutionary history. Undoubtedly, mammals play an important role in ecosystems by providing essential services such as regulating insect populations, seed dispersal and pollination and act as indicators of general ecosystem health. However, the macroecological and macroevolutionary processes underpinning past and present biodiversity patterns are only beginning to be explored on a global scale. It is also particularly important, in the face of the global extinction crisis, to understand these processes in order to be able to use this knowledge to prevent future biodiversity loss and loss of ecosystem services. Unfortunately, efforts to understand mammalian biodiversity have been hampered by a lack of data. New data compilations on current species' distributions, ecologies and evolutionary histories now allow an integrated approach to understand this biodiversity. We review and synthesize these new studies, exploring the past and present ecology and evolution of mammalian biodiversity, and use these findings to speculate about the mammals of our future. PMID:21807728

  3. The Mammalian Ovary from Genesis to Revelation (United States)

    Edson, Mark A.; Nagaraja, Ankur K.; Matzuk, Martin M.


    Two major functions of the mammalian ovary are the production of germ cells (oocytes), which allow continuation of the species, and the generation of bioactive molecules, primarily steroids (mainly estrogens and progestins) and peptide growth factors, which are critical for ovarian function, regulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis, and development of secondary sex characteristics. The female germline is created during embryogenesis when the precursors of primordial germ cells differentiate from somatic lineages of the embryo and take a unique route to reach the urogenital ridge. This undifferentiated gonad will differentiate along a female pathway, and the newly formed oocytes will proliferate and subsequently enter meiosis. At this point, the oocyte has two alternative fates: die, a common destiny of millions of oocytes, or be fertilized, a fate of at most approximately 100 oocytes, depending on the species. At every step from germline development and ovary formation to oogenesis and ovarian development and differentiation, there are coordinated interactions of hundreds of proteins and small RNAs. These studies have helped reproductive biologists to understand not only the normal functioning of the ovary but also the pathophysiology and genetics of diseases such as infertility and ovarian cancer. Over the last two decades, parallel progress has been made in the assisted reproductive technology clinic including better hormonal preparations, prenatal genetic testing, and optimal oocyte and embryo analysis and cryopreservation. Clearly, we have learned much about the mammalian ovary and manipulating its most important cargo, the oocyte, since the birth of Louise Brown over 30 yr ago. PMID:19776209

  4. Redox regulation of mammalian sperm capacitation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristian O′Flaherty


    Full Text Available Capacitation is a series of morphological and metabolic changes necessary for the spermatozoon to achieve fertilizing ability. One of the earlier happenings during mammalian sperm capacitation is the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS that will trigger and regulate a series of events including protein phosphorylation, in a time-dependent fashion. The identity of the sperm oxidase responsible for the production of ROS involved in capacitation is still elusive, and several candidates are discussed in this review. Interestingly, ROS-induced ROS formation has been described during human sperm capacitation. Redox signaling during capacitation is associated with changes in thiol groups of proteins located on the plasma membrane and subcellular compartments of the spermatozoon. Both, oxidation of thiols forming disulfide bridges and the increase on thiol content are necessary to regulate different sperm proteins associated with capacitation. Reducing equivalents such as NADH and NADPH are necessary to support capacitation in many species including humans. Lactate dehydrogenase, glucose-6-phospohate dehydrogenase, and isocitrate dehydrogenase are responsible in supplying NAD (P H for sperm capacitation. Peroxiredoxins (PRDXs are newly described enzymes with antioxidant properties that can protect mammalian spermatozoa; however, they are also candidates for assuring the regulation of redox signaling required for sperm capacitation. The dysregulation of PRDXs and of enzymes needed for their reactivation such as thioredoxin/thioredoxin reductase system and glutathione-S-transferases impairs sperm motility, capacitation, and promotes DNA damage in spermatozoa leading to male infertility.

  5. A common tendency for phylogenetic overdispersion in mammalian assemblages


    Cooper, Natalie; RODRIGUEZ, JESUS; Purvis, Andy


    PUBLISHED Competition has long been proposed as an important force in structuring mammalian communities. Although early work recognised that competition has a phylogenetic dimension, only with recent increases in the availability of phylogenies have true phylogenetic investigations of mammalian community structure become possible. We test whether the phylogenetic structure of 142 assemblages from three mammalian clades (New World monkeys, North American ground squirrels and Australasian po...

  6. Retroperitoneal ancient schwannoma: Review of clinico-radiological features

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Loke, T.K.L.; Lo, K.K.L.; Lo, J.; Chan, J.C.S. [United Christian Hospital, Kwun Tong, (Hong Kong). Department of Diagnostics Radiology; Yuen, N.W.F. [United Christian Hospital, Kwun Tong, (Hong Kong). Department of Histopathology


    A case is reported here of an ancient schwannoma in the retroperitoneum. The findings of abdominal ultrasound and CT in a patient with a retroperitoneal ancient schwannoma are presented, and the clinical and radiological features of this unusual tumour are reviewed. The presence of a large, well-delineated complex cystic mass in the deep soft tissues should raise the possibility of an ancient schwannoma. It is important to recognize these tumours as benign with excellent prognosis so as to avoid unnecessary radical surgery. Copyright (1998) Blackwell Science Pty Ltd 12 refs., 2 figs.

  7. Change of ancient hydrology net in Northeast China Plain

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Hui QU; Yu CHU; Fenglong ZHANG; Fuli QI; Xiangkui YANG


    Comparing with lithofacies palaeogeography of several great plains, the authors analyzed four great plains in Quaternary diastrophism, the sedimentary facies, sedimentary environment and their evolution from the independent embryonic and river system of ancient Heilongjiang finally to the Halar highland, Songnen Plain, Sanjiang Plain, the Xingkai Lake Plain and various river systems, collected the unification outside the system of Heilongjiang River to release into the sea, south ancient Xialiao River finally piracy Dongliao River, Xialiao River had released into the sea the ancient water law vicissitude and the evolved rule.

  8. [Medicine in ancient Mesopotamia--part 1]. (United States)

    Martins E Silva, J


    The present work summarizes the more elucidating aspects on the foundations and the practice of the medicine in Antique Mesopotamia, since the invention of the writing, more than 5000 thousand years ago, and the beginning of our era. The first part of the article includes a brief perspective about the political and social evolution that characterized those archaic civilizations, as well as the inventions and knowledge further used by the following Humanity's generations. Most of what is known on the subject, as well as the history and political-social events that occurred in the region during that remote epoch, resulted of the laborious decoding of about half a million small clay plates or fragments with text engravings in cuneiform characters that were discovered since the middle of the XIX century in the ruins of the main cities of the Babylonian and Assyrian empires. The second part embraces exclusively the main characteristics of the medicine in Ancient Mesopotamia, in its main facets: concept of disease, healers and practice. The disease was considered a divine punishment or resultant from a malign influence. In that base, the medicine began by being preventive, by the use of appropriate amulets, or by offerings or sacrifices intending to pacify those malign forces. The treatment of the generality of the diseases privileged the expulsion of those spirits and malign influences from the patient body, purifying it, which was done by the specific intervention of an ãshipu (clergyman-exorcist); not having results, the treatment was continued by the asû (practical healer) that appealed to a group of physical manipulations, limited surgical acts and the administration or application of prescriptions, resultants of the mixture of organic and inorganic substances. In case of failing, the patients (as well as individuals or rein leaders) could fall back upon a priest diviner (bârû) who, by examination of the organs of an animal especially sacrificed for the effect

  9. Peromyscus as a Mammalian Epigenetic Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kimberly R. Shorter


    Full Text Available Deer mice (Peromyscus offer an opportunity for studying the effects of natural genetic/epigenetic variation with several advantages over other mammalian models. These advantages include the ability to study natural genetic variation and behaviors not present in other models. Moreover, their life histories in diverse habitats are well studied. Peromyscus resources include genome sequencing in progress, a nascent genetic map, and >90,000 ESTs. Here we review epigenetic studies and relevant areas of research involving Peromyscus models. These include differences in epigenetic control between species and substance effects on behavior. We also present new data on the epigenetic effects of diet on coat-color using a Peromyscus model of agouti overexpression. We suggest that in terms of tying natural genetic variants with environmental effects in producing specific epigenetic effects, Peromyscus models have a great potential.

  10. Mammalian Autophagy: How Does It Work? (United States)

    Bento, Carla F; Renna, Maurizio; Ghislat, Ghita; Puri, Claudia; Ashkenazi, Avraham; Vicinanza, Mariella; Menzies, Fiona M; Rubinsztein, David C


    Autophagy is a conserved intracellular pathway that delivers cytoplasmic contents to lysosomes for degradation via double-membrane autophagosomes. Autophagy substrates include organelles such as mitochondria, aggregate-prone proteins that cause neurodegeneration and various pathogens. Thus, this pathway appears to be relevant to the pathogenesis of diverse diseases, and its modulation may have therapeutic value. Here, we focus on the cell and molecular biology of mammalian autophagy and review the key proteins that regulate the process by discussing their roles and how these may be modulated by posttranslational modifications. We consider the membrane-trafficking events that impact autophagy and the questions relating to the sources of autophagosome membrane(s). Finally, we discuss data from structural studies and some of the insights these have provided.

  11. Mechanosensor Channels in Mammalian Somatosensory Neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick Delmas


    Full Text Available Mechanoreceptive sensory neurons innervating the skin, skeletal muscles andviscera signal both innocuous and noxious information necessary for proprioception, touchand pain. These neurons are responsible for the transduction of mechanical stimuli intoaction potentials that propagate to the central nervous system. The ability of these cells todetect mechanical stimuli impinging on them relies on the presence of mechanosensitivechannels that transduce the external mechanical forces into electrical and chemical signals.Although a great deal of information regarding the molecular and biophysical properties ofmechanosensitive channels in prokaryotes has been accumulated over the past two decades,less is known about the mechanosensitive channels necessary for proprioception and thesenses of touch and pain. This review summarizes the most pertinent data onmechanosensitive channels of mammalian somatosensory neurons, focusing on theirproperties, pharmacology and putative identity.

  12. KN-93 inhibits IKr in mammalian cardiomyocytes. (United States)

    Hegyi, Bence; Chen-Izu, Ye; Jian, Zhong; Shimkunas, Rafael; Izu, Leighton T; Banyasz, Tamas


    Calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) inhibitor KN-93 is widely used in multiple fields of cardiac research especially for studying the mechanisms of cardiomyopathy and cardiac arrhythmias. Whereas KN-93 is a potent inhibitor of CaMKII, several off-target effects have also been found in expression cell systems and smooth muscle cells, but there is no information on the KN93 side effects in mammalian ventricular myocytes. In this study we explore the effect of KN-93 on the rapid component of delayed rectifier potassium current (IKr) in the ventricular myocytes from rabbit and guinea pig hearts. Our data indicate that KN-93 exerts direct inhibitory effect on IKr that is not mediated via CaMKII. This off-target effect of KN93 should be taken into account when interpreting the data from using KN93 to investigate the role of CaMKII in cardiac function.

  13. [Thiamine triphosphatase activity in mammalian mitochondria]. (United States)

    Rusina, I M; Makarchikov, A F


    Mitochondrial preparations isolated from bovine kidney and brain as well as the liver and the brain of rat show thiamine triphosphatase (ThTPase) activity. The activity was determined from the particles by freezing-thawing suggesting that a soluble enzyme is involved. The liberation patterns of ThTPase and marker enzyme activities from mitochondria under osmotic shock or treatment with increasing Triton X-100 concentrations indicate the presence of ThTPase both in the matrix and intermembrane space. It was found, basing on gel filtration behavior, that the mitochondrial ThTPase has the same molecular mass as specific cytosolic ThTPase (EC The enzymes, however, were clearly distinguishable in Km values, the mitochondrial one showing a higher apparent affinity for substrate. These results imply the existence of ThTPase multiple forms in mammalian cells.

  14. Nuclear transfer technology in mammalian cloning. (United States)

    Wolf, D P; Mitalipov, S; Norgren, R B


    The past several years have witnessed remarkable progress in mammalian cloning using nuclear transfer (NT). Until 1997 and the announcement of the successful cloning of sheep from adult mammary gland or fetal fibroblast cells, our working assumption was that cloning by NT could only be accomplished with relatively undifferentiated embryonic cells. Indeed, live offspring were first produced by NT over 15 years ago from totipotent, embryonic blastomeres derived from early cleavage-stage embryos. However, once begun, the progression to somatic cell cloning or NT employing differentiated cells as the source of donor nuclei was meteoric, initially involving differentiated embryonic cell cultures in sheep in 1996 and quickly thereafter, fetal or adult somatic cells in sheep, cow, mouse, goat, and pig. Several recent reviews provide a background for and discussion of these successes. Here we will focus on the potential uses of reproductive cloning along with recent activities in the field and a discussion concerning current interests in human reproductive and therapeutic cloning.

  15. The architecture of mammalian ribosomal protein promoters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Perry Robert P


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Mammalian ribosomes contain 79 different proteins encoded by widely scattered single copy genes. Coordinate expression of these genes at transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels is required to ensure a roughly equimolar accumulation of ribosomal proteins. To date, detailed studies of only a very few ribosomal protein (rp promoters have been made. To elucidate the general features of rp promoter architecture, I made a detailed sequence comparison of the promoter regions of the entire set of orthologous human and mouse rp genes. Results A striking evolutionarily conserved feature of most rp genes is the separation by an intron of the sequences involved in transcriptional and translational regulation from the sequences with protein encoding function. Another conserved feature is the polypyrimidine initiator, which conforms to the consensus (Y2C+1TY(T2(Y3. At least 60 % of the rp promoters contain a largely conserved TATA box or A/T-rich motif, which should theoretically have TBP-binding capability. A remarkably high proportion of the promoters contain conserved binding sites for transcription factors that were previously implicated in rp gene expression, namely upstream GABP and Sp1 sites and downstream YY1 sites. Over 80 % of human and mouse rp genes contain a transposable element residue within 900 bp of 5' flanking sequence; very little sequence identity between human and mouse orthologues was evident more than 200 bp upstream of the transcriptional start point. Conclusions This analysis has provided some valuable insights into the general architecture of mammalian rp promoters and has identified parameters that might coordinately regulate the transcriptional activity of certain subsets of rp genes.

  16. RNAa is conserved in mammalian cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vera Huang

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: RNA activation (RNAa is a newly discovered mechanism of gene activation triggered by small double-stranded RNAs termed 'small activating RNAs' (saRNAs. Thus far, RNAa has only been demonstrated in human cells and is unclear whether it is conserved in other mammals. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In the present study, we evaluated RNAa in cells derived from four mammalian species including nonhuman primates (African green monkey and chimpanzee, mouse, and rat. Previously, we identified saRNAs leading to the activation of E-cadherin, p21, and VEGF in human cells. As the targeted sequences are highly conserved in primates, transfection of each human saRNA into African green monkey (COS1 and chimpanzee (WES cells also resulted in induction of the intended gene. Additional saRNAs targeting clinically relevant genes including p53, PAR4, WT1, RB1, p27, NKX3-1, VDR, IL2, and pS2 were also designed and transfected into COS1 and WES cells. Of the nine genes, p53, PAR4, WT1, and NKX3-1 were induced by their corresponding saRNAs. We further extended our analysis of RNAa into rodent cell types. We identified two saRNAs that induced the expression of mouse Cyclin B1 in NIH/3T3 and TRAMP C1 cells, which led to increased phosphorylation of histone H3, a downstream marker for chromosome condensation and entry into mitosis. We also identified two saRNAs that activated the expression of CXCR4 in primary rat adipose-derived stem cells. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study demonstrates that RNAa exists in mammalian species other than human. Our findings also suggest that nonhuman primate disease models may have clinical applicability for validating RNAa-based drugs.

  17. The DNA damage response in mammalian oocytes

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    John eCarroll


    Full Text Available DNA damage is one of the most common insults that challenge all cells. To cope, an elaborate molecular and cellular response has evolved to sense, respond to and correct the damage. This allows the maintenance of DNA fidelity essential for normal cell viability and the prevention of genomic instability that can lead to tumour formation. In the context of oocytes, the impact of DNA damage is not one of tumour formation but of the maintenance of fertility. Mammalian oocytes are particularly vulnerable to DNA damage because physiologically they may lie dormant in the ovary for many years (>40 in humans until they receive the stimulus to grow and acquire the competence to become fertilized. The implication of this is that in some organisms, such as humans, oocytes face the danger of cumulative genetic damage for decades. Thus, the ability to detect and repair DNA damage is essential to maintain the supply of oocytes necessary for reproduction. Therefore, failure to confront DNA damage in oocytes could cause serious anomalies in the embryo that may be propagated in the form of mutations to the next generation allowing the appearance of hereditary disease. Despite the potential impact of DNA damage on reproductive capacity and genetic fidelity of embryos, the mechanisms available to the oocyte for monitoring and repairing such insults have remained largely unexplored until recently. Here, we review the different aspects of the response to DNA damage in mammalian oocytes. Specifically, we address the oocyte DNA damage response from embryonic life to adulthood and throughout oocyte development.

  18. Engineered Trehalose Permeable to Mammalian Cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alireza Abazari

    Full Text Available Trehalose is a naturally occurring disaccharide which is associated with extraordinary stress-tolerance capacity in certain species of unicellular and multicellular organisms. In mammalian cells, presence of intra- and extracellular trehalose has been shown to confer improved tolerance against freezing and desiccation. Since mammalian cells do not synthesize nor import trehalose, the development of novel methods for efficient intracellular delivery of trehalose has been an ongoing investigation. Herein, we studied the membrane permeability of engineered lipophilic derivatives of trehalose. Trehalose conjugated with 6 acetyl groups (trehalose hexaacetate or 6-O-Ac-Tre demonstrated superior permeability in rat hepatocytes compared with regular trehalose, trehalose diacetate (2-O-Ac-Tre and trehalose tetraacetate (4-O-Ac-Tre. Once in the cell, intracellular esterases hydrolyzed the 6-O-Ac-Tre molecules, releasing free trehalose into the cytoplasm. The total concentration of intracellular trehalose (plus acetylated variants reached as high as 10 fold the extracellular concentration of 6-O-Ac-Tre, attaining concentrations suitable for applications in biopreservation. To describe this accumulation phenomenon, a diffusion-reaction model was proposed and the permeability and reaction kinetics of 6-O-Ac-Tre were determined by fitting to experimental data. Further studies suggested that the impact of the loading and the presence of intracellular trehalose on cellular viability and function were negligible. Engineering of trehalose chemical structure rather than manipulating the cell, is an innocuous, cell-friendly method for trehalose delivery, with demonstrated potential for trehalose loading in different types of cells and cell lines, and can facilitate the wide-spread application of trehalose as an intracellular protective agent in biopreservation studies.

  19. Recent integrations of mammalian Hmg retropseudogenes

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Eillen Tecle; Leann Zielinski; David H. Kass


    We propose that select retropseudogenes of the high mobility group nonhistone chromosomal protein genes have recently integrated into mammalian genomes on the basis of the high sequence identity of the copies to the cDNA sequences derived from the original genes. These include the Hmg1 gene family in mice and the Hmgn2 family in humans. We investigated orthologous loci of several strains and species of Mus for presence or absence of apparently young Hmg1 retropseudogenes. Three of four analysed elements were specific to Mus musculus, two of which were not fixed, indicative of recent evolutionary origins. Additionally, we datamined a presumptive subfamily (Hmgz) of mouse Hmg1, but only identified one true element in the GenBank database, which is not consistent with a separate subfamily status. Two of four analysed Hmgn2 retropseudogenes were specific for the human genome, whereas a third was identified in human, chimpanzee and gorilla genomes, and a fourth additionally found in orangutan but absent in African green monkey. Flanking target-site duplications were consistent with LINE integration sites supporting LINE machinery for their mechanism of amplification. The human Hmgn2 retropseudogenes were full length, whereas the mouse Hmg1 elements were either full length or 3′-truncated at specific positions, most plausibly the result of use of alternative polyadenylation sites. The nature of their recent amplification success in relation to other retropseudogenes is unclear, although availability of a large number of transcripts during gametogenesis may be a reason. It is apparent that retropseudogenes continue to shape mammalian genomes, and may provide insight into the process of retrotransposition, as well as offer potential use as phylogenetic markers.

  20. Non-destructive sampling of ancient insect DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Philip Francis; Elias, Scott; Gilbert, Tom


    BACKGROUND: A major challenge for ancient DNA (aDNA) studies on insect remains is that sampling procedures involve at least partial destruction of the specimens. A recent extraction protocol reveals the possibility of obtaining DNA from past insect remains without causing visual morphological...... of 77-204 base pairs (-bp) in size using species-specific and general insect primers. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The applied non-destructive DNA extraction method shows promising potential on insect museum specimens of historical age as far back as AD 1820, but less so on the ancient permafrost...... damage. We test the applicability of this protocol on historic museum beetle specimens dating back to AD 1820 and on ancient beetle chitin remains from permafrost (permanently frozen soil) dating back more than 47,000 years. Finally, we test the possibility of obtaining ancient insect DNA directly from...

  1. Ancient and modern women in the "Woman's World". (United States)

    Hurst, Isobel


    Under the editorship of Oscar Wilde, the "Woman's World" exemplified the popular dissemination of Hellenism through periodical culture. Addressing topics such as marriage, politics, and education in relation to the lives of women in the ancient world, the magazine offered an unfamiliar version of the reception of ancient Greece and Rome in late-Victorian aestheticism, one that was accessible to a wide readership because it was often based on images rather than texts. The classical scholar Jane Ellen Harrison addressed herself to this audience of women readers, discussing the similarities between modern collegiate life and the "woman's world" that enabled Sappho to flourish in ancient Greece. The "Woman's World" thus questions gender stereotypes by juxtaposing ancient and modern women, implicitly endorsing varied models of womanhood.

  2. Non-destructive sampling of ancient insect DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Philip Francis; Elias, Scott; Gilbert, Tom;


    BACKGROUND: A major challenge for ancient DNA (aDNA) studies on insect remains is that sampling procedures involve at least partial destruction of the specimens. A recent extraction protocol reveals the possibility of obtaining DNA from past insect remains without causing visual morphological...... damage. We test the applicability of this protocol on historic museum beetle specimens dating back to AD 1820 and on ancient beetle chitin remains from permafrost (permanently frozen soil) dating back more than 47,000 years. Finally, we test the possibility of obtaining ancient insect DNA directly from...... of 77-204 base pairs (-bp) in size using species-specific and general insect primers. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The applied non-destructive DNA extraction method shows promising potential on insect museum specimens of historical age as far back as AD 1820, but less so on the ancient permafrost...

  3. Next Generation Sequencing of Ancient DNA: Requirements, Strategies and Perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Knapp


    Full Text Available The invention of next-generation-sequencing has revolutionized almost all fields of genetics, but few have profited from it as much as the field of ancient DNA research. From its beginnings as an interesting but rather marginal discipline, ancient DNA research is now on its way into the centre of evolutionary biology. In less than a year from its invention next-generation-sequencing had increased the amount of DNA sequence data available from extinct organisms by several orders of magnitude. Ancient DNA  research is now not only adding a temporal aspect to evolutionary studies and allowing for the observation of evolution in real time, it also provides important data to help understand the origins of our own species. Here we review progress that has been made in next-generation-sequencing of ancient DNA over the past five years and evaluate sequencing strategies and future directions.

  4. Deep sequencing of RNA from ancient maize kernels.

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    Sarah L Fordyce

    Full Text Available The characterization of biomolecules from ancient samples can shed otherwise unobtainable insights into the past. Despite the fundamental role of transcriptomal change in evolution, the potential of ancient RNA remains unexploited - perhaps due to dogma associated with the fragility of RNA. We hypothesize that seeds offer a plausible refuge for long-term RNA survival, due to the fundamental role of RNA during seed germination. Using RNA-Seq on cDNA synthesized from nucleic acid extracts, we validate this hypothesis through demonstration of partial transcriptomal recovery from two sources of ancient maize kernels. The results suggest that ancient seed transcriptomics may offer a powerful new tool with which to study plant domestication.

  5. Ancestry of modern Europeans: contributions of ancient DNA. (United States)

    Lacan, Marie; Keyser, Christine; Crubézy, Eric; Ludes, Bertrand


    Understanding the peopling history of Europe is crucial to comprehend the origins of modern populations. Of course, the analysis of current genetic data offers several explanations about human migration patterns which occurred on this continent, but it fails to explain precisely the impact of each demographic event. In this context, direct access to the DNA of ancient specimens allows the overcoming of recent demographic phenomena, which probably highly modified the constitution of the current European gene pool. In recent years, several DNA studies have been successfully conducted from ancient human remains thanks to the improvement of molecular techniques. They have brought new fundamental information on the peopling of Europe and allowed us to refine our understanding of European prehistory. In this review, we will detail all the ancient DNA studies performed to date on ancient European DNA from the Middle Paleolithic to the beginning of the protohistoric period.

  6. Deep Sequencing of RNA from Ancient Maize Kernels (United States)

    Rasmussen, Morten; Cappellini, Enrico; Romero-Navarro, J. Alberto; Wales, Nathan; Alquezar-Planas, David E.; Penfield, Steven; Brown, Terence A.; Vielle-Calzada, Jean-Philippe; Montiel, Rafael; Jørgensen, Tina; Odegaard, Nancy; Jacobs, Michael; Arriaza, Bernardo; Higham, Thomas F. G.; Ramsey, Christopher Bronk; Willerslev, Eske; Gilbert, M. Thomas P.


    The characterization of biomolecules from ancient samples can shed otherwise unobtainable insights into the past. Despite the fundamental role of transcriptomal change in evolution, the potential of ancient RNA remains unexploited – perhaps due to dogma associated with the fragility of RNA. We hypothesize that seeds offer a plausible refuge for long-term RNA survival, due to the fundamental role of RNA during seed germination. Using RNA-Seq on cDNA synthesized from nucleic acid extracts, we validate this hypothesis through demonstration of partial transcriptomal recovery from two sources of ancient maize kernels. The results suggest that ancient seed transcriptomics may offer a powerful new tool with which to study plant domestication. PMID:23326310

  7. Anticancer activity of botanical compounds in ancient fermented beverages (review). (United States)

    McGovern, P E; Christofidou-Solomidou, M; Wang, W; Dukes, F; Davidson, T; El-Deiry, W S


    Humans around the globe probably discovered natural remedies against disease and cancer by trial and error over the millennia. Biomolecular archaeological analyses of ancient organics, especially plants dissolved or decocted as fermented beverages, have begun to reveal the preliterate histories of traditional pharmacopeias, which often date back thousands of years earlier than ancient textual, ethnohistorical, and ethnological evidence. In this new approach to drug discovery, two case studies from ancient Egypt and China illustrate how ancient medicines can be reconstructed from chemical and archaeological data and their active compounds delimited for testing their anticancer and other medicinal effects. Specifically, isoscopoletin from Artemisia argyi, artemisinin from Artemisia annua, and the latter's more easily assimilated semi-synthetic derivative, artesunate, showed the greatest activity in vitro against lung and colon cancers. In vivo tests of these compounds previously unscreened against lung and pancreatic cancers are planned for the future.

  8. Mycorrhizal symbiosis: ancient signalling mechanisms co-opted

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geurts, R.; Vleeshouwers, V.G.A.A.


    Mycorrhizal root endosymbiosis is an ancient property of land plants. Two parallel studies now provide novel insight into the mechanism driving this interaction and how it is used by other filamentous microbes like pathogenic oomycetes.

  9. Ancient proteins resolve the evolutionary history of Darwin's South American ungulates. (United States)

    Welker, Frido; Collins, Matthew J; Thomas, Jessica A; Wadsley, Marc; Brace, Selina; Cappellini, Enrico; Turvey, Samuel T; Reguero, Marcelo; Gelfo, Javier N; Kramarz, Alejandro; Burger, Joachim; Thomas-Oates, Jane; Ashford, David A; Ashton, Peter D; Rowsell, Keri; Porter, Duncan M; Kessler, Benedikt; Fischer, Roman; Baessmann, Carsten; Kaspar, Stephanie; Olsen, Jesper V; Kiley, Patrick; Elliott, James A; Kelstrup, Christian D; Mullin, Victoria; Hofreiter, Michael; Willerslev, Eske; Hublin, Jean-Jacques; Orlando, Ludovic; Barnes, Ian; MacPhee, Ross D E


    No large group of recently extinct placental mammals remains as evolutionarily cryptic as the approximately 280 genera grouped as 'South American native ungulates'. To Charles Darwin, who first collected their remains, they included perhaps the 'strangest animal[s] ever discovered'. Today, much like 180 years ago, it is no clearer whether they had one origin or several, arose before or after the Cretaceous/Palaeogene transition 66.2 million years ago, or are more likely to belong with the elephants and sirenians of superorder Afrotheria than with the euungulates (cattle, horses, and allies) of superorder Laurasiatheria. Morphology-based analyses have proved unconvincing because convergences are pervasive among unrelated ungulate-like placentals. Approaches using ancient DNA have also been unsuccessful, probably because of rapid DNA degradation in semitropical and temperate deposits. Here we apply proteomic analysis to screen bone samples of the Late Quaternary South American native ungulate taxa Toxodon (Notoungulata) and Macrauchenia (Litopterna) for phylogenetically informative protein sequences. For each ungulate, we obtain approximately 90% direct sequence coverage of type I collagen α1- and α2-chains, representing approximately 900 of 1,140 amino-acid residues for each subunit. A phylogeny is estimated from an alignment of these fossil sequences with collagen (I) gene transcripts from available mammalian genomes or mass spectrometrically derived sequence data obtained for this study. The resulting consensus tree agrees well with recent higher-level mammalian phylogenies. Toxodon and Macrauchenia form a monophyletic group whose sister taxon is not Afrotheria or any of its constituent clades as recently claimed, but instead crown Perissodactyla (horses, tapirs, and rhinoceroses). These results are consistent with the origin of at least some South American native ungulates from 'condylarths', a paraphyletic assembly of archaic placentals. With ongoing

  10. Ancient evolutionary origins of epigenetic regulation associated with posttraumatic stress disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Levent eSipahi


    Full Text Available Epigenetic marks, including DNA methylation, are modifiable molecular factors that may underlie mental disorders, especially responses to trauma, including the development of and resilience to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD. Previous work has identified differential DNA methylation at CpG dinucleotide sites genomewide between trauma exposed individuals with and without PTSD, suggesting a role for epigenetic potential – the capacity to epigenetically regulate behavior and physiology in response to lived experiences. The human species is characterized by an increased period of adaptive plasticity during brain development. The evolutionary history of epigenetic potential in relation to adaptive plasticity is currently unknown. Using phylogenetic methods and functional annotation analyses, we trace the evolution of over 7,000 CpG dinucleotides, including 203 associated with PTSD, during the descent of humans in during mammalian evolution and characterize the biological significance of this evolution. We demonstrate that few (7% PTSD-associated CpG sites are unique to humans, while the vast majority of sites have deep evolutionary origins: 73% and 93% were unambiguously present in the last common ancestor of humans/orangutans and humans/chimpanzees, respectively. Genes proximal to evolved PTSD-associated CpG sites revealed significant enrichment for immune function during recent human evolution and regulation of gene expression during more ancient periods of human evolution. Additionally, 765 putative transcription factor binding sites (TFBS were identified that overlap with PTSD-associated CpG sites. Elucidation of the evolutionary history of PTSD-associated CpG sites may provide insights into the function and origin of epigenetic potential in trauma responses, generally, and PTSD, specifically. The human capacity to respond to trauma with stable physiologic and behavioral changes may be due to epigenetic potentials that are shared among many

  11. Cases of Trephination in Ancient Greek Skulls

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    Vasiliki Ζafiri


    Full Text Available Background: Trephination, or trepanning, is considered to be one of the most ancient surgical operations with an especially extensive geographical incidence, both in the New World and in the Old. In Europe, more than 200 finds of trephination have been found, from Scandinavia to the Balkans. The technique of trephination or trepanning covers overall the last 10,000 years and exhibits great versatility and adjustability in the knowledge, technical means, therapeutic needs, prejudices and social standards of each period and of each population group. Hippocrates was the one to classify for the first time the kinds of cranial fractures and define the conditions and circumstances for carrying out a trepanning.Aim: The present research aims to investigate the Greek cranial trephinations on sculls from the collection of the Anthropological Museum of the Medical School of Athens that come from archaeological excavations.Method: Skulls were examined by macroscopic observation with reflective light. Furthermore, radiographic representation of the skulls was used.Results: The anthropological researches and the studies of anthropological skeleton remains that came out during archaeological excavations from different eras and areas have given information about the medical practices in the very important geographic area of Greece and in particular, we referred to cases of Greek trephinations.

  12. Studing cranial vault modifications in ancient Mesoamerica. (United States)

    Tiesler, Vera


    The artificial modification of infant cranial vaults through massages or by means of constriction and compression devices constitutes a readily visible, permanent body modification that has been employed cross-culturally to express identity, ethnicity, beauty, status and gender. For those ancient societies that staged head shaping, these cultural correlates may be ascertained by examining cranial shapes together with other data sets from the archaeological record. Studies of skulls modified for cultural reasons also provide important clues for understanding principles in neural growth and physiopathological variation in cranial expansion. This paper focuses on head shaping techniques in Mesoamerica, where the practice was deeply rooted and widespread before the European conquest. It provides a comprehensive review of the Mesoamericanistic research on shaping techniques, implements and taxonomies. An up-dated, interdisciplinary examination of the physiological implications and the cultural meanings of artificially produced head shapes in different times and culture areas within Mesoamerica leads to a discussion of the scope, caveats, and future directions involved in this kind of research in the region and beyond.

  13. Clinical anatomy as practiced by ancient Egyptians. (United States)

    Loukas, Marios; Hanna, Michael; Alsaiegh, Nada; Shoja, Mohammadali M; Tubbs, R Shane


    Egypt is famously known for its Nile and pyramids, yet not many people know that Egypt made possible the origin of the anatomical sciences. Several ancient papyri guide us through the Egyptians' exploration of the human body and how they applied anatomical knowledge to clinical medicine to the best of their knowledge. It is through records, such as the Edwin Smith, Ebers, and Kahun papyri and other literature detailing the work of the Egyptian embalmers, physicians, and Greek anatomists, that we are able to take a glimpse into the evolution of the anatomical sciences from 3000 B.C. to 250 B.C. It is through the Egyptian embalmer that we were able to learn of some of the first interactions with human organs and their detailed observation. The Egyptian physician's knowledge, being transcribed into the Ebers and Edwin Smith papyri, enabled future physicians to seek reference to common ailments for diagnosing and treating a variety of conditions ranging from head injuries to procedures, such as trans-sphenoidal surgery. In Alexandria, Herophilus, and Erasistratus made substantial contributions to the anatomical sciences by beginning the practice of human dissection. For instance, Herophilus described the anatomy of the heart valves along with Erasistratus who demonstrated how blood was prevented from flowing retrograde under normal conditions. Hence, from various records, we are able to unravel how Egypt paved the road for study of the anatomical sciences.

  14. complex multiplication, ancient Indian mathematics ” Vedas”

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajashri K. Bhongade


    Full Text Available For designing of comple x nu mber multiplier basic idea is adopted from designing of multiplier. An ancient Indian mathematics “Vedas” is used for designing the multiplier unit. The reare 16 sutra in Vedas, from that the Urdhva Tiryak b-hyam sutra (method was selected for implimentation complex multiplication and basically Urdhva Tiryakbhyam sutra appli-cable to all cases of multip licat ion. Any multi-bit mu ltip licat ion can be reduced down to single bit mult iplication and addition by using Urdhva Tiryakbhyam sutra is performed by vertically and crosswise. The partial products and sums are generated in single step which reduces the carry propagation fro m LSB to MSB by using these formulas. In th is paper simu lation result for4bit complex no. multiplication using Booth‟s algorithm and using Vedic sutra are illustrated. The imp le mentation of the Vedic mathe matics and their application to the comple x mu lt iplier was checked parameter like propagation delay.

  15. Ancient solar wind in lunar microbreccias (United States)

    Thiemens, M. H.; Clayton, R. N.


    Possible components of the ancient solar wind, particularly the N-15/N-14 ratio, are investigated on the basis of lunar microbreccia studies. Nitrogen contents and isotope ratios were determined for Apollo 11 and 15 microbreccia samples by means of vacuum pyrolysis techniques. The Apollo 11 soil breccias, which had been closed to the addition of recent solar wind due to their compaction, are found to contain the lowest N-15/N-14 ratios yet reported for the solar wind, extending the range of variation of the ratio to between a delta N-15 of -190% in the past to +120% at present. Nitrogen isotope analysis of the Apollo 15 drill core, which had undergone two episodes of solar wind exposure, also support the secular variation in the N-15 content of the solar wind, which is attributed to spallation reactions in the sun. The formation of the breccias at the Apollo 11 and 15 sites is discussed on the basis of the observed nitrogen systematics, and differences between N-15 and Ne-21 cosmic ray exposure ages implied are attributed to the diffusive loss of neon from lunar soils.

  16. The scalable mammalian brain: Emergent distributions of glia and neurons

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jehee, J.F.M.; Murre, J.M.J.


    In this paper, we demonstrate that two characteristic properties of mammalian brains emerge when scaling-up modular, cortical structures. Firstly, the glia-to-neuron ratio is not constant across brains of different sizes: large mammalian brains have more glia per neuron than smaller brains. Our anal

  17. Adult Neurogenesis in the Mammalian Hippocampus: Why the Dentate Gyrus? (United States)

    Drew, Liam J.; Fusi, Stefano; Hen, René


    In the adult mammalian brain, newly generated neurons are continuously incorporated into two networks: interneurons born in the subventricular zone migrate to the olfactory bulb, whereas the dentate gyrus (DG) of the hippocampus integrates locally born principal neurons. That the rest of the mammalian brain loses significant neurogenic capacity…

  18. A versatile expression vector system for mammalian cell factories

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Anne Mathilde; Kildegaard, Helene Faustrup; Hansen, Bjarne Gram

    The development of the field of mammalian cell factories requests fast and high-throughput methods which means high need for simpler and more efficient cloning techniques. This project applies the ligation-free USERTM (uracil-specific excision reagent) cloning technique to construct mammalian...

  19. Ancient Archways and Ancestral Halls in Shexian County

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    SHEXIAN, located in the southern foothills of Huangshan Mountain in Anhui Province, is an ancient county which was once the seat of Huizhou Prefecture. The area is also known as the birthplace of Anhui merchants. With a long history, favorable geographic position and a unique culture created mainly by those rich Anhui merchants, Shexian has retained a large number of cultural relics, especially ancient archways,

  20. Design of a High Speed Multiplier (Ancient Vedic Mathematics Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Sridevi, Anirudh Palakurthi, Akhila Sadhula, Hafsa Mahreen


    Full Text Available In this paper, an area efficient multiplier architecture is presented. The architecture is based on Ancient algorithms of the Vedas, propounded in the Vedic Mathematics scripture of Sri Bharati Krishna Tirthaji Maharaja. The multiplication algorithm used here is called Nikhilam Navatascaramam Dasatah. The multiplier based on the ancient technique is compared with the modern multiplier to highlight the speed and power superiority of the Vedic Multipliers.

  1. A brief history of corneal transplantation: From ancient to modern


    Alexandra X Crawford; Patel, Dipika V.; Charles NJ McGhee


    This review highlights many of the fundamental concepts and events in the development of corneal transplantation - from ancient times to modern. Tales of eye, limb, and even heart transplantation appear in ancient and medieval texts; however, in the scientific sense, the original concepts of corneal surgery date back to the Greek physician Galen (130-200 AD). Although proposals to provide improved corneal clarity by surgical interventions, including keratoprostheses, were better developed by ...

  2. Design of a High Speed Multiplier (Ancient Vedic Mathematics Approach)



    In this paper, an area efficient multiplier architecture is presented. The architecture is based on Ancient algorithms of the Vedas, propounded in the Vedic Mathematics scripture of Sri Bharati Krishna Tirthaji Maharaja. The multiplication algorithm used here is called Nikhilam Navatascaramam Dasatah. The multiplier based on the ancient technique is compared with the modern multiplier to highlight the speed and power superiority of the Vedic Multipliers.

  3. Ancient schwannoma of the tongue: a case report. (United States)

    Bilici, Suat; Akpınar, Meltem; Yiğit, Ozgür; Günver, Feray


    A 45-year-old male patient had left sided submucosal swelling extending backwards from the tip of the tongue disturbing articulation and swallowing. Submucosally located lesion was 3 x 2 x 1.5 cm in size and totally excised under local anesthesia. In this article, we present a case of ancient schwannoma of tongue. Although a very rare entity, ancient schwannoma should be considered in differential diagnosis of tongue lesions.

  4. Magnetic Strips Preserve Record of Ancient Mars (United States)


    This image is a map of Martian magnetic fields in the southern highlands near the Terra Cimmeria and Terra Sirenum regions, centered around 180 degrees longitude from the equator to the pole. It is where magnetic stripes possibly resulting from crustal movement are most prominent. The bands are oriented approximately east - west and are about 100 miles wide and 600 miles long, although the longest band stretches more than 1200 miles. The false blue and red colors represent invisible magnetic fields in the Martian crust that point in opposite directions. The magnetic fields appear to be organized in bands, with adjacent bands pointing in opposite directions, giving these stripes a striking similarity to patterns seen in the Earth's crust at the mid-oceanic ridges. NASA's Mars Global Surveyor has discovered surprising new evidence of past movement of the Martian crust, suggesting that ancient Mars was a more dynamic, Earth-like planet than it is today. Scientists using the spacecraft's magnetometer have found banded patterns of magnetic fields on the Martian surface. The adjacent magnetic bands point in opposite directions, giving these invisible stripes a striking similarity to patterns seen in the crust of Earth's sea floors. [figure removed for brevity, see original site] (P50330,MRPS94769) Above: An artist's concept comparing the present day magnetic fields on Earth and Mars. Earth's magnetic field is generated by an active dynamo - a hot core of molten metal. The magnetic field surrounds Earth and is considered global (left). The various Martian magnetic fields (right) do not encompass the entire planet and are local. The Martian dynamo is extinct, and its magnetic fields are 'fossil' remnants of its ancient, global magnetic field. I On the Earth, the sea floor spreads apart slowly at mid-oceanic ridges as new crust flows up from Earth's hot interior. Meanwhile, the direction of Earth's magnetic field reverses occasionally, resulting in alternating stripes in

  5. Homologue of mammalian apolipoprotein A-Ⅱ in non-mammalian vertebrates

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Malay Choudhury; Shoji Yamada; Masaharu Komatsu; Hideki Kishimura; Seiichi Ando


    Although apolipoprotein with molecular weight 14 kDa (apo-14 kDa) is associated with fish plasma highdensity lipoproteins(HDLs),it remains to be determined whether apo-14 kDa is the homologue of mammalian apoA-Ⅱ.We have obtained the full cDNA sequences that encode Japanese eel and rainbow trout apo-14 kDa.Homologues of Japanese eel apo-14 kDa sequence could be found in 14 fish species deposited in the DDBJ/EMBL/GenBank or TGI database.Fish apo14 kDa lacks propeptide and contains more internal repeats than mammalian apoA-Ⅱ.Nevertheless,phylogenetic analysis allowed fish apo-14 kDa to be the homologue of mammalian apoA-Ⅱ.In addition,in silico cloning of the TGI,Ensembl,or NCBI database revealed apoA-Ⅱs in dog,chicken,green anole lizard,and African clawed frog whose sequences had not so far been available,suggesting both apoA-Ⅰ and apoA-Ⅱas fundamental constituents of vertebrate HDLs.

  6. A conserved mammalian protein interaction network.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Åsa Pérez-Bercoff

    Full Text Available Physical interactions between proteins mediate a variety of biological functions, including signal transduction, physical structuring of the cell and regulation. While extensive catalogs of such interactions are known from model organisms, their evolutionary histories are difficult to study given the lack of interaction data from phylogenetic outgroups. Using phylogenomic approaches, we infer a upper bound on the time of origin for a large set of human protein-protein interactions, showing that most such interactions appear relatively ancient, dating no later than the radiation of placental mammals. By analyzing paired alignments of orthologous and putatively interacting protein-coding genes from eight mammals, we find evidence for weak but significant co-evolution, as measured by relative selective constraint, between pairs of genes with interacting proteins. However, we find no strong evidence for shared instances of directional selection within an interacting pair. Finally, we use a network approach to show that the distribution of selective constraint across the protein interaction network is non-random, with a clear tendency for interacting proteins to share similar selective constraints. Collectively, the results suggest that, on the whole, protein interactions in mammals are under selective constraint, presumably due to their functional roles.

  7. Bright Times for an Ancient Star (United States)

    Fuhrmann, K.; Chini, R.


    Field stars of Population II are among the oldest sources in the Galaxy. Most of their solar-type dwarfs are non-single and, given their extreme age, a significant fraction is accompanied by stellar remnants. Here we report the discovery of the bright F7V star 49 Lib as a massive and very metal-rich Population II field blue straggler, along with evidence for a white dwarf as its dark and unseen companion. 49 Lib is known as a relatively fast-rotating, single-lined spectroscopic binary in a 3 year orbit and with an apparent age of about τ ≃ 2.3 Gyr. Its chemistry and kinematics, however, both consistently imply that 49 Lib must be an ancient Population II star at τ ≃ 12 Gyr. With reference to the inclination from the astrometric orbit, leading to a {M}{WD}={0.50}-0.04+0.03 M⊙ low-mass white dwarf, and in view of the {M}{BS}={1.55}-0.13+0.07 M⊙ massive, evolved F-type blue straggler star, we demonstrate that 49 Lib must have been the subject of a mostly conservative mass transfer with a near-equal-mass M ≃ 1.06 + 1.00 M⊙ G-type binary at birth. For its future evolution, we point to the possibility as a progenitor system toward a type Ia supernova. Most importantly, however, we note that the remarkable metal enrichment of 49 Lib at [Mg/H] = +0.23 and [Fe/H] = ‑0.11 has principally very relevant implications for the early epoch when the Milky Way came into being.

  8. Malignant tumors in an ancient Egyptian population. (United States)

    Zink, A; Rohrbach, H; Szeimies, U; Hagedorn, H G; Haas, C J; Weyss, C; Bachmeier, B; Nerlich, A G


    Since it is still an open debate whether malignant tumors are mainly influenced by environmental factors, the frequency of such malignant tumors in historic populations with different living conditions is of particular interest. In the present study, we investigated the occurrence of malignant tumors affecting bone tissue in a population of mumrnies and skeletons, which had been excavated from the large necropolis of Thebes-West, Upper Egypt. Our study material comprised a series of at least 415 individuals (thereof 325 adults) dating from approx. 1500-500 B.C. All individuals had been mummified, but were severely damaged and partially broken by grave robbers, so that often only parts of the mummies/skeletons were available for investigation. The available specimens were subjected to careful macroscopic examination, while isolated findings were radiologically analyzed. Using this approach, we identified at least 4 cases showing malignant tumors affecting the skeleton. In two cases, multiple mixed osteolytic-osteoblastic lesions suggested multiple metastases from carcinomas. Two further individuals presented with multiple osteolyses (vertebra, pelvis, skull) most suggestive of multiple myeloma. The observation of at least 4 cases of malignant tumors with osseous manifestation in a series of 325 adult individuals provides clear evidence that malignant tumors were not a rare event in the ancient Egyptian study population, particularly when the limitations of a study of tumors manifested only in osseous remnants are taken into consideration. A calculation of the age- and sex-adjusted tumor frequency in our material in comparison with a recent model for such a material by Waldron (1996) indicates that the rate of malignant tumors with bone affection in our series is higher than in an English population from 1901-1905, although lower than in a comparable present day population. This clearly indicates that important factors affecting malignant tumors were effective even

  9. Retinal research using the perfused mammalian eye. (United States)

    Niemeyer, G


    The effort to isolate and maintain alive in vitro an intact mammalian eye is rewarded by the full control provided over the arterial input and exclusion of systemic regulatory or compensatory mechanisms. Electrical recording of typical light-evoked field potentials from retina and optic nerve can be complemented by single-cell recording. Thus, light-induced electrical activity reflects the function of the retinal pigment epithelium, of the layers of the retina and of the ganglion cells or their axons. Retinal function in vitro is documented by electrophysiological and morphological methods revealing subtle features of retinal information processing as well as optic nerve signals that approach-at threshold stimulus intensity-the human psychophysical threshold. Such sensitivity of third-order retinal neurons is described for the first time. This well controlled in vitro preparation has been used successfully for biophysical, metabolic and pharmacological studies. Examples are provided that demonstrate the marked sensibility of the rod system to changes in glucose supply. Moreover, histochemical identification of glycogen stores revealed labeling of the second- and third-order neurons subserving the rod system, in addition to labeling of Müller (glial) cells in the cat retina. The glycogen content of the cat retina is augmented by prolonged anesthesia, largely depleted by ischemia after enucleation and enhanced by insulin. Pharmacological experiments using agonists and antagonists of putative retinal neurotransmitters are summarized and outlined using the muscarinic cholinergic agonist QNB as an example. Actions and uptake of the neuromodulator adenosine are presented in detail, including inhibitory effects on physiologically characterized ganglion cells. Neuronal effects of adenosine are distinguished from those resulting from vasodilatation and from glycogenolysis induced by the neuromodulator. To open the blood-retina barrier, a hyperosmotic challenge can be

  10. Ancient evolutionary origin of vertebrate enteric neurons from trunk-derived neural crest. (United States)

    Green, Stephen A; Uy, Benjamin R; Bronner, Marianne E


    The enteric nervous system of jawed vertebrates arises primarily from vagal neural crest cells that migrate to the foregut and subsequently colonize and innervate the entire gastrointestinal tract. Here we examine development of the enteric nervous system in the basal jawless vertebrate the sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) to gain insight into its evolutionary origin. Surprisingly, we find no evidence for the existence of a vagally derived enteric neural crest population in the lamprey. Rather, labelling with the lipophilic dye DiI shows that late-migrating cells, originating from the trunk neural tube and associated with nerve fibres, differentiate into neurons within the gut wall and typhlosole. We propose that these trunk-derived neural crest cells may be homologous to Schwann cell precursors, recently shown in mammalian embryos to populate post-embryonic parasympathetic ganglia, including enteric ganglia. Our results suggest that neural-crest-derived Schwann cell precursors made an important contribution to the ancient enteric nervous system of early jawless vertebrates, a role that was largely subsumed by vagal neural crest cells in early gnathostomes.

  11. Apoptosis in mammalian oocytes: a review. (United States)

    Tiwari, Meenakshi; Prasad, Shilpa; Tripathi, Anima; Pandey, Ashutosh N; Ali, Irfan; Singh, Arvind K; Shrivastav, Tulsidas G; Chaube, Shail K


    Apoptosis causes elimination of more than 99% of germ cells from cohort of ovary through follicular atresia. Less than 1% of germ cells, which are culminated in oocytes further undergo apoptosis during last phases of oogenesis and depletes ovarian reserve in most of the mammalian species including human. There are several players that induce apoptosis directly or indirectly in oocytes at various stages of meiotic cell cycle. Premature removal of encircling granulosa cells from immature oocytes, reduced levels of adenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate and guanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate, increased levels of calcium (Ca(2+)) and oxidants, sustained reduced level of maturation promoting factor, depletion of survival factors, nutrients and cell cycle proteins, reduced meiotic competency, increased levels of proapoptotic as well as apoptotic factors lead to oocyte apoptosis. The BH3-only proteins also act as key regulators of apoptosis in oocyte within the ovary. Both intrinsic (mitochondria-mediated) as well as extrinsic (cell surface death receptor-mediated) pathways are involved in oocyte apoptosis. BID, a BH3-only protein act as a bridge between both apoptotic pathways and its cleavage activates cell death machinery of both the pathways inside the follicular microenvironment. Oocyte apoptosis leads to the depletion of ovarian reserve that directly affects reproductive outcome of various mammals including human. In this review article, we highlight some of the important players and describe the pathways involved during oocyte apoptosis in mammals.

  12. Mitochondrial dynamics in mammalian health and disease. (United States)

    Liesa, Marc; Palacín, Manuel; Zorzano, Antonio


    The meaning of the word mitochondrion (from the Greek mitos, meaning thread, and chondros, grain) illustrates that the heterogeneity of mitochondrial morphology has been known since the first descriptions of this organelle. Such a heterogeneous morphology is explained by the dynamic nature of mitochondria. Mitochondrial dynamics is a concept that includes the movement of mitochondria along the cytoskeleton, the regulation of mitochondrial architecture (morphology and distribution), and connectivity mediated by tethering and fusion/fission events. The relevance of these events in mitochondrial and cell physiology has been partially unraveled after the identification of the genes responsible for mitochondrial fusion and fission. Furthermore, during the last decade, it has been identified that mutations in two mitochondrial fusion genes (MFN2 and OPA1) cause prevalent neurodegenerative diseases (Charcot-Marie Tooth type 2A and Kjer disease/autosomal dominant optic atrophy). In addition, other diseases such as type 2 diabetes or vascular proliferative disorders show impaired MFN2 expression. Altogether, these findings have established mitochondrial dynamics as a consolidated area in cellular physiology. Here we review the most significant findings in the field of mitochondrial dynamics in mammalian cells and their implication in human pathologies.

  13. Modelling study of dimerization in mammalian defensins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Verma Chandra


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Defensins are antimicrobial peptides of innate immunity functioning by non-specific binding to anionic phospholipids in bacterial membranes. Their cationicity, amphipathicity and ability to oligomerize are considered key factors for their action. Based on structural information on human β-defensin 2, we examine homologous defensins from various mammalian species for conserved functional physico-chemical characteristics. Results Based on homology greater than 40%, structural models of 8 homologs of HBD-2 were constructed. A conserved pattern of electrostatics and dynamics was observed across 6 of the examined defensins; models backed by energetics suggest that the defensins in these 6 organisms are characterized by dimerization-linked enhanced functional potentials. In contrast, dimerization is not energetically favoured in the sheep, goat and mouse defensins, suggesting that they function efficiently as monomers. Conclusion β-defensin 2 from some mammals may work as monomers while those in others, including humans, work as oligomers. This could potentially be used to design human defensins that may be effective at lower concentrations and hence have therapeutic benefits.

  14. Centrifugal innervation of the mammalian olfactory bulb. (United States)

    Matsutani, Shinji; Yamamoto, Noboru


    Although it has been known for decades that the mammalian olfactory bulb receives a substantial number of centrifugal inputs from other regions of the brain, relatively few data have been available on the function of the centrifugal olfactory system. Knowing the role of the centrifugal projection and how it works is of critical importance to fully understanding olfaction. The centrifugal fibers can be classified into two groups, a group that release neuromodulators, such as noradrenaline, serotonin, or acetylcholine, and a group originating in the olfactory cortex. Accumulating evidence suggests that centrifugal neuromodulatory inputs are associated with acquisition of odor memory. Because the distribution of the terminals on these fibers is diffuse and widespread, the neuromodulatory inputs must affect diverse subsets of bulbar neurons at the same time. In contrast, knowledge of the role of centrifugal fibers from the olfactory cortical areas is limited. Judging from recent morphological evidence, these fibers may modify the activity of neurons located in sparse and discrete loci in the olfactory bulb. Given the modular organization of the olfactory bulb, centrifugal fibers from the olfactory cortex may help coordinate the activities of restricted subsets of neurons belonging to distinct functional modules in an odor-specific manner. Because the olfactory cortex receives inputs from limbic and neocortical areas in addition to inputs from the bulb, the centrifugal inputs from the cortex can modulate odor processing in the bulb in response to non-olfactory as well as olfactory cues.

  15. Mitochondrial toxicity of triclosan on mammalian cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charmaine Ajao


    Full Text Available Effects of triclosan (5-chloro-2′-(2,4-dichlorophenoxyphenol on mammalian cells were investigated using human peripheral blood mono nuclear cells (PBMC, keratinocytes (HaCaT, porcine spermatozoa and kidney tubular epithelial cells (PK-15, murine pancreatic islets (MIN-6 and neuroblastoma cells (MNA as targets. We show that triclosan (1–10 μg ml−1 depolarised the mitochondria, upshifted the rate of glucose consumption in PMBC, HaCaT, PK-15 and MNA, and subsequently induced metabolic acidosis. Triclosan induced a regression of insulin producing pancreatic islets into tiny pycnotic cells and necrotic death. Short exposure to low concentrations of triclosan (30 min, ≤1 μg/ml paralyzed the high amplitude tail beating and progressive motility of spermatozoa, within 30 min exposure, depolarized the spermatozoan mitochondria and hyperpolarised the acrosome region of the sperm head and the flagellar fibrous sheath (distal part of the flagellum. Experiments with isolated rat liver mitochondria showed that triclosan impaired oxidative phosphorylation, downshifted ATP synthesis, uncoupled respiration and provoked excessive oxygen uptake. These exposure concentrations are 100–1000 fold lower that those permitted in consumer goods. The mitochondriotoxic mechanism of triclosan differs from that of valinomycin, cereulide and the enniatins by not involving potassium ionophoric activity.

  16. Ventricular Fibrillation in Mammalian Hearts: Simulation Results (United States)

    Fenton, Flavio H.


    The computational approach to understanding the initiation and evolution of cardiac arrhythmias forms a necessary link between experiment and theory. Numerical simulations combine useful mathematical models and complex geometry while offering clean and comprehensive data acquisition, reproducible results that can be compared to experiments, and the flexibility of exploring parameter space systematically. However, because cardiac dynamics occurs on many scales (on the order of 10^9 cells of size 10-100 microns with more than 40 ionic currents and time scales as fast as 0.01ms), roughly 10^17 operations are required to simulate just one second of real time. These intense computational requirements lead to significant implementation challenges even on existing supercomputers. Nevertheless, progress over the last decade in understanding the effects of some spatial scales and spatio-temporal dynamics on cardiac cell and tissue behavior justifies the use of certain simplifications which, along with improved models for cellular dynamics and detailed digital models of cardiac anatomy, are allowing simulation studies of full-size ventricles and atria. We describe this simulation problem from a combined numerical, physical and biological point of view, with an emphasis on the dynamics and stability of scroll waves of electrical activity in mammalian hearts and their relation to tachycardia, fibrillation and sudden death. Detailed simulations of electrical activity in ventricles including complex anatomy, anisotropic fiber structure, and electrophysiological effects of two drugs (DAM and CytoD) are presented and compared with experimental results.

  17. Protection of cultured mammalian cells by rebamipide

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Antoku, Shigetoshi; Aramaki, Ryoji [Kyushu Univ., Fukuoka (Japan). Faculty of Medicine; Tanaka, Hisashi; Kusumoto, Naotoshi


    Rebamipide which is used as a drug for gastritis and stomach ulcer has large capability for OH radical scavenging. It is expected that rebamipide has protective effect against ionizing radiations. The present paper deals with protective effect of rebamipide for cultured mammalian cells exposed to ionizing radiations. As rebamipide is insoluble in water, three solvents were used to dissolve. Rebamipide dissolved in dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO), dimethyl formamide (DMFA) and 0.02 N NaOH was added to the cells in Eagle`s minimum essential medium (MEM) supplemented with 10% fetal calf serum and the cells were irradiated with X-rays. After irradiation, the cells were trypsinized, plated in MEM with 10% fetal calf serum and incubated for 7 days in a CO{sub 2} incubator to form colonies. Rebamipide dissolved in 0.02 N NaOH exhibited the protective effect expected its OH radical scavenging capability. However, the protective effect of rebamipide dissolved in DMSO was about half of that expected by its radical scavenging capability and that of rebamipide dissolved in DMFA was not observed. Uptake of rebamipide labeled with {sup 14}C increased with increasing contact time with rebamipide. These rebamipide mainly distributed in nucleus rather than cytoplasm. (author)

  18. Nitric oxide negatively regulates mammalian adult neurogenesis (United States)

    Packer, Michael A.; Stasiv, Yuri; Benraiss, Abdellatif; Chmielnicki, Eva; Grinberg, Alexander; Westphal, Heiner; Goldman, Steven A.; Enikolopov, Grigori


    Neural progenitor cells are widespread throughout the adult central nervous system but only give rise to neurons in specific loci. Negative regulators of neurogenesis have therefore been postulated, but none have yet been identified as subserving a significant role in the adult brain. Here we report that nitric oxide (NO) acts as an important negative regulator of cell proliferation in the adult mammalian brain. We used two independent approaches to examine the function of NO in adult neurogenesis. In a pharmacological approach, we suppressed NO production in the rat brain by intraventricular infusion of an NO synthase inhibitor. In a genetic approach, we generated a null mutant neuronal NO synthase knockout mouse line by targeting the exon encoding active center of the enzyme. In both models, the number of new cells generated in neurogenic areas of the adult brain, the olfactory subependyma and the dentate gyrus, was strongly augmented, which indicates that division of neural stem cells in the adult brain is controlled by NO and suggests a strategy for enhancing neurogenesis in the adult central nervous system.

  19. Mammalian cardenolides in cancer prevention and therapeutics. (United States)

    Al-Ghoul, Mohammad; Valdes, Roland


    Digoxin-like immunoreactive factor (DLIF) and ouabain-like factor (OLF) are the mammalian counterparts to the plant-derived cardiotonic steroids digoxin and ouabain. Compelling evidence indicates that the cardiotonic steroids may have anticancer properties. Recent evidence indicates that low (nanomolar) concentrations of DLIF selectively induce cell death in transformed cells, while sparing normal cells, and is even more potent than the plant-derived compounds. The discovery that these endogenous molecules may play a role in the regulation of cancer cell proliferation provides a potentially new paradigm for the physiologic role of DLIF and OLF. In addition, the possible use of digoxin itself as a therapeutic agent in cancer has been explored, and evidence suggests that its conversion to dihydrodigoxin may be involved in regulating anticancer activity. The mechanism(s) for the pro-apoptotic property of these compounds is not known. In this brief review, we will discuss the proposed mechanism of action of digoxin, ouabain, DLIF, and OLF as anticancer compounds and discuss the effects that metabolic conversion to their dihydro-derivatives may have on this activity. From the perspective of therapeutic drug monitoring, these findings suggest some potential new challenges in the need to measure concentrations of digoxin and dihydrodigoxin as well as their endogenous counterparts DLIF and OLF in serum.

  20. Ion channels, phosphorylation and mammalian sperm capacitation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Pablo E Visconti; Dario Krapf; José Luis de la Vega-Beltrán; Juan José Acevedo; Alberto Darszon


    Sexually reproducing animals require an orchestrated communication between spermatozoa and the egg to generate a new individual. Capacitation, a maturational complex phenomenon that occurs in the female reproductive tract, renders spermatozoa capable of binding and fusing with the oocyte, and it is a requirement for mammalian fertilization. Capacitation encompasses plasma membrane reorganization, ion permeability regulation, cholesterol loss and changes in the phosphorylation state of many proteins. Novel tools to study sperm ion channels, image intracellular ionic changes and proteins with better spatial and temporal resolution, are unraveling how modifications in sperm ion transport and phosphorylation states lead to capacitation. Recent evidence indicates that two parallel pathways regulate phosphorylation events leading to capacitation, one of them requiring activation of protein kinase A and the second one involving inactivation of ser/thr phosphatases. This review examines the involvement of ion transporters and phosphorylation signaling processes needed for spermatozoa to achieve capacitation. Understanding the molecular mechanisms leading to fertilization is central for societies to deal with rising male infertility rates, to develop safe male gamete-based contraceptives and to preserve biodiversity through better assisted fertilization strategies.

  1. Historical Perspectives: plasticity of mammalian skeletal muscle. (United States)

    Pette, D


    More than 40 years ago, the nerve cross-union experiment of Buller, Eccles, and Eccles provided compelling evidence for the essential role of innervation in determining the properties of mammalian skeletal muscle fibers. Moreover, this experiment revealed that terminally differentiated muscle fibers are not inalterable but are highly versatile entities capable of changing their phenotype from fast to slow or slow to fast. With the use of various experimental models, numerous studies have since confirmed and extended the notion of muscle plasticity. Together, these studies demonstrated that motoneuron-specific impulse patterns, neuromuscular activity, and mechanical loading play important roles in both the maintenance and transition of muscle fiber phenotypes. Depending on the type, intensity, and duration of changes in any of these factors, muscle fibers adjust their phenotype to meet the altered functional demands. Fiber-type transitions resulting from multiple qualitative and quantitative changes in gene expression occur sequentially in a regular order within a spectrum of pure and hybrid fiber types.

  2. Movement Symmetries and the Mammalian Vestibular System (United States)

    McCollum, Gin; Boyle, Richard


    Unity of movement requires vertebrates to have an ability to symmetrize along the midline. For example, human erect stance involves symmetry with respect to gravity. The mammalian vestibular system provides a mechanism for maintaining symmetries, which is also open to influence and adaptation by the rest of the organism. The vestibular system includes the inner ear endorgans and central nuclei, along with projections to oculomotor, cerebellar, thalamic, and spinal motor centers. The vestibular endorgans - the semicircular canals and the otoliths - use sensory hairs to register inertia. The vestibular endorgans are right-left symmetric and the semicircular canals form an approximately orthogonal coordinate system for angular motion. Primary afferent axons project from the endorgans to the vestibular nuclei (and a few other places). The vestibular nuclei integrate vestibular, visual, and somatosensory signals, along with a proposed copy of the voluntary motor command and signals from other central structures. The relationship between the canals and the otoliths gives rise to symmetries among neurons, in the organization among the several vestibular nuclei, and in the projections from the vestibular nuclei. These symmetries organize the space of body movements so that functional relationships are maintained in spite of the many free variables of body movement. They also provide a foundation for adaptive reinterpretation of the relationship between canal and otolith signals, for example in freefall.

  3. Angiogenesis is inhibitory for mammalian digit regeneration. (United States)

    Yu, Ling; Yan, Mingquan; Simkin, Jennifer; Ketcham, Paulina D; Leininger, Eric; Han, Manjong; Muneoka, Ken


    The regenerating mouse digit tip is a unique model for investigating blastema formation and epimorphic regeneration in mammals. The blastema is characteristically avascular and we previously reported that blastema expression of a known anti-angiogenic factor gene, Pedf, correlated with a successful regenerative response (Yu, L., Han, M., Yan, M., Lee, E. C., Lee, J. & Muneoka, K. (2010). BMP signaling induces digit regeneration in neonatal mice. Development, 137, 551-559). Here we show that during regeneration Vegfa transcripts are not detected in the blastema but are expressed at the onset of differentiation. Treating the amputation wound with vascular endothelial growth factor enhances angiogenesis but inhibits regeneration. We next tested bone morphogenetic protein 9 (BMP9), another known mediator of angiogenesis, and found that BMP9 is also a potent inhibitor of digit tip regeneration. BMP9 induces Vegfa expression in the digit stump suggesting that regenerative failure is mediated by enhanced angiogenesis. Finally, we show that BMP9 inhibition of regeneration is completely rescued by treatment with pigment epithelium-derived factor. These studies show that precocious angiogenesis is inhibitory for regeneration, and provide compelling evidence that the regulation of angiogenesis is a critical factor in designing therapies aimed at stimulating mammalian regeneration.

  4. Neuropeptidomics applied to studies of mammalian reproduction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Le Thao T.


    Full Text Available Neuropeptidomics, a mass spectrometry-based technique which aims to uncover the complete suite of neuropeptides present in a tissue, organ or cell from the brain or nervous system, has found application in studies examining physiological responses (e.g. food intake, appetite and reproduction. Neuropeptides (and peptide hormones have long been known as regulators of mammalian physiological processes, particularly reproduction. These peptides are derived from precursor proteins and become active via proteolytic processes and post-translational modifications. A relatively large number of neuropeptides, mainly formed in the hypothalamus or the anterior pituitary of mammals, have been specifically associated with reproduction, including GnRH, NPY, PYY and kisspeptin. Here, we will present an overview of neuropeptides, their roles in reproduction and the application of neuropeptidomics in this field. We address the advantages of neuropeptidomics in reproductive studies including the high throughput identification, profiling and quantification of neuropeptides present in reproductive tissues and also discuss some of the challenges. The application of neuropeptidomics to the field of reproduction will provide the foundation for a greater understanding of how neuropeptides act to regulate reproductive function.

  5. Cell fate regulation in early mammalian development (United States)

    Oron, Efrat; Ivanova, Natalia


    Preimplantation development in mammals encompasses a period from fertilization to implantation and results in formation of a blastocyst composed of three distinct cell lineages: epiblast, trophectoderm and primitive endoderm. The epiblast gives rise to the organism, while the trophectoderm and the primitive endoderm contribute to extraembryonic tissues that support embryo development after implantation. In many vertebrates, such as frog or fish, maternally supplied lineage determinants are partitioned within the egg. Cell cleavage that follows fertilization results in polarization of these factors between the individual blastomeres, which become restricted in their developmental fate. In contrast, the mouse oocyte and zygote lack clear polarity and, until the eight-cell stage, individual blastomeres retain the potential to form all lineages. How are cell lineages specified in the absence of a maternally supplied blueprint? This is a fundamental question in the field of developmental biology. The answer to this question lies in understanding the cell-cell interactions and gene networks involved in embryonic development prior to implantation and using this knowledge to create testable models of the developmental processes that govern cell fates. We provide an overview of classic and contemporary models of early lineage development in the mouse and discuss the emerging body of work that highlights similarities and differences between blastocyst development in the mouse and other mammalian species.

  6. Ion channels, phosphorylation and mammalian sperm capacitation. (United States)

    Visconti, Pablo E; Krapf, Dario; de la Vega-Beltrán, José Luis; Acevedo, Juan José; Darszon, Alberto


    Sexually reproducing animals require an orchestrated communication between spermatozoa and the egg to generate a new individual. Capacitation, a maturational complex phenomenon that occurs in the female reproductive tract, renders spermatozoa capable of binding and fusing with the oocyte, and it is a requirement for mammalian fertilization. Capacitation encompasses plasma membrane reorganization, ion permeability regulation, cholesterol loss and changes in the phosphorylation state of many proteins. Novel tools to study sperm ion channels, image intracellular ionic changes and proteins with better spatial and temporal resolution, are unraveling how modifications in sperm ion transport and phosphorylation states lead to capacitation. Recent evidence indicates that two parallel pathways regulate phosphorylation events leading to capacitation, one of them requiring activation of protein kinase A and the second one involving inactivation of ser/thr phosphatases. This review examines the involvement of ion transporters and phosphorylation signaling processes needed for spermatozoa to achieve capacitation. Understanding the molecular mechanisms leading to fertilization is central for societies to deal with rising male infertility rates, to develop safe male gamete-based contraceptives and to preserve biodiversity through better assisted fertilization strategies.

  7. Evolution of the mammalian dentate gyrus. (United States)

    Hevner, Robert F


    The dentate gyrus (DG), a part of the hippocampal formation, has important functions in learning, memory, and adult neurogenesis. Compared with homologous areas in sauropsids (birds and reptiles), the mammalian DG is larger and exhibits qualitatively different phenotypes: 1) folded (C- or V-shaped) granule neuron layer, concave toward the hilus and delimited by a hippocampal fissure; 2) nonperiventricular adult neurogenesis; and 3) prolonged ontogeny, involving extensive abventricular (basal) migration and proliferation of neural stem and progenitor cells (NSPCs). Although gaps remain, available data indicate that these DG traits are present in all orders of mammals, including monotremes and marsupials. The exception is Cetacea (whales, dolphins, and porpoises), in which DG size, convolution, and adult neurogenesis have undergone evolutionary regression. Parsimony suggests that increased growth and convolution of the DG arose in stem mammals concurrently with nonperiventricular adult hippocampal neurogenesis and basal migration of NSPCs during development. These traits could all result from an evolutionary change that enhanced radial migration of NSPCs out of the periventricular zones, possibly by epithelial-mesenchymal transition, to colonize and maintain nonperiventricular proliferative niches. In turn, increased NSPC migration and clonal expansion might be a consequence of growth in the cortical hem (medial patterning center), which produces morphogens such as Wnt3a, generates Cajal-Retzius neurons, and is regulated by Lhx2. Finally, correlations between DG convolution and neocortical gyrification (or capacity for gyrification) suggest that enhanced abventricular migration and proliferation of NSPCs played a transformative role in growth and folding of neocortex as well as archicortex.

  8. Timing of circadian genes in mammalian tissues (United States)

    Korenčič, Anja; Košir, Rok; Bordyugov, Grigory; Lehmann, Robert; Rozman, Damjana; Herzel, Hanspeter


    Circadian clocks are endogenous oscillators driving daily rhythms in physiology. The cell-autonomous clock is governed by an interlocked network of transcriptional feedback loops. Hundreds of clock-controlled genes (CCGs) regulate tissue specific functions. Transcriptome studies reveal that different organs (e.g. liver, heart, adrenal gland) feature substantially varying sets of CCGs with different peak phase distributions. To study the phase variability of CCGs in mammalian peripheral tissues, we develop a core clock model for mouse liver and adrenal gland based on expression profiles and known cis-regulatory sites. ‘Modulation factors’ associated with E-boxes, ROR-elements, and D-boxes can explain variable rhythms of CCGs, which is demonstrated for differential regulation of cytochromes P450 and 12 h harmonics. By varying model parameters we explore how tissue-specific peak phase distributions can be generated. The central role of E-boxes and ROR-elements is confirmed by analysing ChIP-seq data of BMAL1 and REV-ERB transcription factors. PMID:25048020

  9. Mitochondrial inheritance is mediated by microtubules in mammalian cell division. (United States)

    Lawrence, Elizabeth; Mandato, Craig


    The mitochondrial network fragments and becomes uniformly dispersed within the cytoplasm when mammalian cells enter mitosis. Such morphology and distribution of mitochondria was previously thought to facilitate the stochastic inheritance of mitochondria by daughter cells. In contrast, we recently reported that mitochondria in dividing mammalian cells are inherited by an ordered mechanism of inheritance mediated by microtubules. We showed that mitochondria are progressively enriched at the cell equator and depleted at the poles throughout division. Furthermore, the mitochondrial distribution during division is dependent on microtubules, indicating an ordered inheritance strategy. The microtubule-mediated positioning of mitochondria in dividing mammalian cells may have functional consequences for cell division and/or mitochondrial inheritance.

  10. From toxins to mammalian enzymes: the diversity of mono-ADP-ribosylation. (United States)

    Grimaldi, Giovanna; Corda, Daniela; Catara, Giuliana


    The ADP-ribosylation of proteins is a phylogenetically ancient mechanism that involves the transfer of ADP-ribose from nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD⁺) to specific amino acids of target proteins post-translationally. In the first part of this review, we briefly describe ADP-ribosylation as the mechanism of action of toxins, while giving particular emphasis to a non-conventional ADP-ribosylation reaction that is mediated by the fungal toxin brefeldin A (BFA). This modification results in the loss of the membrane fission activity of the C-terminal binding protein (CtBP)1/ BFA-ADP-ribosylated substrate (BARS), thus blocking progression of cells into mitosis, with important implications for the design of new anticancer drugs. In addition, we summarize the most recent findings on mammalian, intracellular mono-ADP-ribosyl transferase enzymes, underlining the emerging functional roles in which they are involved, including immune responses, transcriptional regulation, stress responses, cell survival. The observation that several mono-ADP-ribosyl transferases, such as PARP-10, PARP-12, PARP-13, are involved in a range of physiological processes points at the multifunctional feature of these proteins.

  11. Transcription factor HIF-1 is a necessary mediator of the pasteur effect in mammalian cells. (United States)

    Seagroves, T N; Ryan, H E; Lu, H; Wouters, B G; Knapp, M; Thibault, P; Laderoute, K; Johnson, R S


    The ability to respond to differential levels of oxygen is important to all respiring cells. The response to oxygen deficiency, or hypoxia, takes many forms and ranges from systemic adaptations to those that are cell autonomous. Perhaps the most ancient of the cell-autonomous adaptations to hypoxia is a metabolic one: the Pasteur effect, which includes decreased oxidative phosphorylation and an increase in anaerobic fermentation. Because anaerobic fermentation produces far less ATP than oxidative phosphorylation per molecule of glucose, increased activity of the glycolytic pathway is necessary to maintain free ATP levels in the hypoxic cell. Here, we present genetic and biochemical evidence that, in mammalian cells, this metabolic switch is regulated by the transcription factor HIF-1. As a result, cells lacking HIF-1alpha exhibit decreased growth rates during hypoxia, as well as decreased levels of lactic acid production and decreased acidosis. We show that this decrease in glycolytic capacity results in dramatically lowered free ATP levels in HIF-1alpha-deficient hypoxic cells. Thus, HIF-1 activation is an essential control element of the metabolic state during hypoxia; this requirement has important implications for the regulation of cell growth during development, angiogenesis, and vascular injury.

  12. Ancient Greek lead findings in Ukraine

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Danevich, F.A. [Institute for Nuclear Research, MSP 03680 Kyiv (Ukraine)], E-mail:; Kim, S.K. [DMRC and School of Physics, Seoul National University, Seoul 151-742 (Korea, Republic of); Kim, H.J. [Physics Department, Kyungpook National University, Daegu 702-701 (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Y.D. [Sejong University, Seoul 143-747 (Korea, Republic of); Kobychev, V.V. [Institute for Nuclear Research, MSP 03680 Kyiv (Ukraine); Kostezh, A.B. [Institute for Hydrometeorology Research, MSP 03650 Kyiv (Ukraine); Kropivyansky, B.N. [Institute for Nuclear Research, MSP 03680 Kyiv (Ukraine); Laubenstein, M. [Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso, I-67010 Assergi (AQ) (Italy); Mokina, V.M.; Nagorny, S.S.; Nikolaiko, A.S. [Institute for Nuclear Research, MSP 03680 Kyiv (Ukraine); Nisi, S. [Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso, I-67010 Assergi (Italy); Poda, D.V.; Tretyak, V.I. [Institute for Nuclear Research, MSP 03680 Kyiv (Ukraine); Voronov, S.A. [Department of Underwater Heritage, Institute of Archaeology, 04210 Kyiv (Ukraine)


    In June-August 2006 an expedition with the aim to look for archaeological lead with low levels of {sup 210}Pb was organised by a Korean-Ukrainian collaboration on the shelf of the Black Sea, near the Crimean Peninsula. The first samples with {approx}0.2 ton of total mass were found at a depth of 28 m among the relics of an ancient Greek ship. Their age has been dated to the first century BC. The element composition of the samples was measured by means of X-ray fluorescence and Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS) analyses. The radiopurity of the lead was tested using low-level and ultra-low-level {gamma}-spectrometry at a surface laboratory in Kyiv, at the Solotvina Underground Laboratory (Ukraine), and deep underground at the Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso (LNGS, Italy). The samples have been assessed at the LNGS also by means of {alpha}-spectroscopy. For all investigated radionuclides, only upper limits could be obtained. Limits on activities of radionuclides in the lead after melting were set at the level of <(0.2-0.3) mBq kg{sup -1} ({sup 60}Co), <(0.2-0.7) mBq kg{sup -1} ({sup 137}Cs), <(0.2-0.9) mBq kg{sup -1} ({sup 226}Ra), <(0.1-0.9) mBq kg{sup -1} ({sup 228}Th), <(5-7) mBq kg{sup -1} ({sup 40}K), <(0.3-1.4) Bq kg{sup -1} ({sup 210}Po), and <(12-13) Bq kg{sup -1} ({sup 210}Pb). Any {sup 210}Pb present in the lead after it was produced ca. 2000 years ago has decayed away. Assuming secular equilibrium in the {sup 238}U chain in the lead, the activity of {sup 210}Pb due to {sup 238}U can be restricted to <(5-17) mBq kg{sup -1} before melting, and <(0.2-0.9) mBq kg{sup -1} after melting.

  13. A blind testing design for authenticating ancient DNA sequences. (United States)

    Yang, H; Golenberg, E M; Shoshani, J


    Reproducibility is a serious concern among researchers of ancient DNA. We designed a blind testing procedure to evaluate laboratory accuracy and authenticity of ancient DNA obtained from closely related extant and extinct species. Soft tissue and bones of fossil and contemporary museum proboscideans were collected and identified based on morphology by one researcher, and other researchers carried out DNA testing on the samples, which were assigned anonymous numbers. DNA extracted using three principal isolation methods served as template in PCR amplifications of a segment of the cytochrome b gene (mitochondrial genome), and the PCR product was directly sequenced and analyzed. The results show that such a blind testing design performed in one laboratory, when coupled with phylogenetic analysis, can nonarbitrarily test the consistency and reliability of ancient DNA results. Such reproducible results obtained from the blind testing can increase confidence in the authenticity of ancient sequences obtained from postmortem specimens and avoid bias in phylogenetic analysis. A blind testing design may be applicable as an alternative to confirm ancient DNA results in one laboratory when independent testing by two laboratories is not available.

  14. Pitfalls in the analysis of ancient human mtDNA

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    The retrieval of DNA from ancient human specimens is not always successful owing to DNA deterioration and contamination although it is vital to provide new insights into the genetic structure of ancient people and to reconstruct the past history. Normally, only short DNA fragments can be retrieved from the ancient specimens. How to identify the authenticity of DNA obtained and to uncover the information it contained are difficult. We employed the ancient mtDNAs reported from Central Asia (including Xinjiang, China) as an example to discern potentially extraneous DNA contamination based on the updated mtDNA phylogeny derived from mtDNA control region, coding region, as well as complete sequence information. Our results demonstrated that many mtDNAs reported are more or less problematic. Starting from a reliable mtDNA phylogeney and combining the available modern data into analysis, one can ascertain the authenticity of the ancient DNA, distinguish the potential errors in a data set, and efficiently decipher the meager information it harbored. The reappraisal of the mtDNAs with the age of more than 2000 years from Central Asia gave support to the suggestion of extensively (pre)historical gene admixture in this region.

  15. Identifying the Practice of Tattooing in Ancient Egypt and Nubia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geoffrey J. Tassie


    Full Text Available Tattooing was practised by many ancient societies, including the ancient Egyptians and Nubians. Egypt, for example, boasts iconographic and physical evidence for tattooing for a period spanning at least 4000 years – the longest known history of tattooing in the world. The second oldest physical evidence for tattooing worldwide was recovered from Middle Kingdom contexts in Egypt and C-Group contexts in Nubia (the Hanslabjoch ice man being the oldest. It has been suggested that tattooing was also practised in the Predynastic period as evidenced by figurines with geometric designs, however, no physical evidence for tattooing has yet been found for this early period. Strangely there is almost no mention of tattooing in ancient Egyptian written records. Historical and ethnographic records indicate that tattooing was also practised much more recently in the Coptic, Islamic and modern eras. Unlike many past societies, tattooing in Egypt appears to have been a custom practised almost exclusively on women. Tattooing tools have not yet been positively identified from ancient Egypt. Ethnographic sources suggest that bundles of metal rods were used in Egypt’s more recent history. This paper discusses physical and iconographic evidence for tattooing in ancient Egypt and investigates whether five copper rods found at Kafr Hassan Dawood, a Predynastic to Early Dynastic site in the East Delta, could be physical evidence for tattooing during this early period.

  16. Ancient scientific basis of the "great serpent" from historical evidence (United States)

    Stothers, Richard B.


    Zoological data and a growing mythology contributed to ancient Western knowledge about large serpents. Yet little modern attention has been paid to the sources, transmission, and receipt in the early Middle Ages of the ancients' information concerning "dragons" and "sea serpents." Real animals--primarily pythons and whales--lie behind the ancient stories. Other animals, conflations of different animals, simple misunderstandings, and willful exaggerations are found to account for the fanciful embellishments, but primitive myths played no significant role in this process during classical times. The expedition of Alexander the Great into India (327-325 B.C.) and the Bagradas River incident in North Africa (256 B.C.) had enormous repercussions on the development of serpent lore. Credible evidence is found for the presence of ancient populations of pythons living along the North African coast west of Egypt and along the coast of the Arabian Sea between the Indus River and the Strait of Hormuz--places where they no longer exist today. The maximum sizes of ancient pythons may have been greater than those of today's specimens.

  17. The Application of Auspicious Ornaments in Ancient Architecture

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



      The application of auspicious ornaments is common in ancient architecture. Their accumulation is profound and implication is ingenious. They have great expression and infection on the art of architecture. All kinds of the architecture have their own auspicious ornaments which can reflect the style and character. In an-cient Chinese palace and temple, usually there are some little animal ornaments which are arranged in different number and pattern. These animals are regarded as divine animals. They all have special meanings. It contains the feudal thoughts of ancient China and its culture connotation. This paper studies the specific application of auspicious ornaments through the study of the divine animals on the ridge.

  18. Pathogens and host immunity in the ancient human oral cavity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Warinner, Christina; Rodrigues, João F Matias; Vyas, Rounak


    cavity has long served as a reservoir for bacteria implicated in both local and systemic disease. We characterize (i) the ancient oral microbiome in a diseased state, (ii) 40 opportunistic pathogens, (iii) ancient human-associated putative antibiotic resistance genes, (iv) a genome reconstruction......Calcified dental plaque (dental calculus) preserves for millennia and entraps biomolecules from all domains of life and viruses. We report the first, to our knowledge, high-resolution taxonomic and protein functional characterization of the ancient oral microbiome and demonstrate that the oral...... of the periodontal pathogen Tannerella forsythia, (v) 239 bacterial and 43 human proteins, allowing confirmation of a long-term association between host immune factors, 'red complex' pathogens and periodontal disease, and (vi) DNA sequences matching dietary sources. Directly datable and nearly ubiquitous, dental...

  19. Application of PIXE to study ancient Iranian silver coins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oliaiy, P.; Shokouhi, F.; Lamehi-Rachti, M.; Rahighi, J. [Van de Graaff Laboratory, AEOI, Tehran (Iran); Andami, P.; Dilmaghani, J.; Etezadi, M. [Tamashagah-e-Pool, General Office of Museums, MDFIR, Tehran (Iran)


    Ancient Iranian silver coins minted in various parts of the ancient Iran from Transoxiana to Mesopotamia over a time span of 460 years (247BC-208AD) during Parthians dynasty were analysed by PIXE with a 2.2 MeV proton beam. Forty seven silver coins owned by Tamashagah-e-Pool (museum of money) in Tehran were examined in this study. The possible correlation between the composition of coins and the minting time or the minting location of coins has been the prime objective of the present study. Elemental analysis of ancient coins could also reveal the direct relation with the political and economical situation and also with the metallurgy of the minting time. Results on the contents of principal component elements (Fe, Ni, Cu, As, Br, Ag, Sn, Sb, Ba, Au and Pb) are presented and discussed. (author)

  20. Ancient Origins of a Modern Anthropic Cosmological Argument

    CERN Document Server

    Cirkovic, M M


    Ancient origins of a modern anthropic argument against cosmologies involving infinite series of past events are considered. It is shown that this argument - which in modern times has been put forward by distinguished cosmologists like Paul C. W. Davies and Frank J. Tipler - originates in pre-Socratic times and is implicitly present in the cyclical cosmology of Empedocles. There are traces of the same line of reasoning throughout the ancient history of ideas, and the case of a provocative statement of Thucydides is briefly analyzed. Moreover, the anthropic argument has been fully formulated in the epic of Lucretius, confirming it as the summit of ancient cosmology. This is not only of historical significance but presents an important topic for the philosophy of cosmology provided some of the contemporary inflationary models, particularly Linde's chaotic inflation, turn out to be correct.

  1. A decision support system for the reading of ancient documents

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Roued-Cunliffe, Henriette


    The research presented in this thesis is based in the Humanities discipline of Ancient History and begins by attempting to understand the interpretation process involved in reading ancient documents and how this process can be aided by computer systems such as Decision Support Systems (DSS...... this process in the five areas: remembering complex reasoning, searching huge datasets, international collaboration, publishing editions, and image enhancement. This research contains a large practical element involving the development of a DSS prototype. The prototype is used to illustrate how a DSS......). The thesis balances between the use of IT tools to aid Humanities research and the understanding that Humanities research must involve human beings. It does not attempt to develop a system that can automate the reading of ancient documents. Instead it seeks to demonstrate and develop tools that can support...

  2. An ancient eye test--using the stars. (United States)

    Bohigian, George M


    Vision testing in ancient times was as important as it is today. The predominant vision testing in some cultures was the recognition and identification of constellations and celestial bodies of the night sky. A common ancient naked eye test used the double star of the Big Dipper in the constellation Ursa Major or the Big Bear. The second star from the end of the handle of the Big Dipper is an optical double star. The ability to perceive this separation of these two stars, Mizar and Alcor, was considered a test of good vision and was called the "test" or presently the Arab Eye Test. This article is the first report of the correlation of this ancient eye test to the 20/20 line in the current Snellen visual acuity test. This article describes the astronomy, origin, history, and the practicality of this test and how it correlates with the present day Snellen visual acuity test.

  3. Statistical guidelines for detecting past population shifts using ancient DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mourier, Tobias; Ho, Simon; Gilbert, M Thomas P;


    results provide useful guidelines for scaling sampling schemes and for optimizing our ability to infer past population dynamics. In addition, our results suggest that many ancient DNA studies may face power issues in detecting moderate demographic collapses and/or highly dynamic demographic shifts when...... quantitative and temporal sampling schemes, we test the power of ancient mitochondrial sequences and nuclear single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) to detect past population bottlenecks. Within our simulated framework, mitochondrial sequences have only limited power to detect subtle bottlenecks and/or fast...... post-bottleneck recoveries. In contrast, nuclear SNPs can detect bottlenecks followed by rapid recovery, although bottlenecks involving reduction of less than half the population are generally detected with low power unless extensive genetic information from ancient individuals is available. Our...

  4. Radiocarbon ages of Sorori ancient rice of Korea

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Kyeong Ja, E-mail: [Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources, Daejeon (Korea, Republic of); Lee, Yung-Jo; Woo, Jong-Yoon [Institute of Korean Prehistory, Cheongju (Korea, Republic of); Jull, A.J. Timothy [NSF Arizona AMS Laboratory, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721 (United States)


    Samples of Sorori ancient rice were excavated in 1998 from the Sorori Paleolithic site located at Sorori, Oksan-myeon, Cheong-won County in Chungcheongbuk-do, Korea. We have made new radiocarbon measurements for Sorori samples in 2009 at the NSF Arizona AMS Laboratory. Both ancient rice samples and surrounded peat from the Sorori site were dated. The AMS results confirmed that the ages of the rice and peat soil were 12,520 {+-} 150 and 12,552 {+-} 90 BP, respectively. These radiocarbon ages are consistent with the previously published data of quasi rice measured at Seoul National University and confirm that the Sorori rice is the oldest ancient rice currently reported.

  5. Analysis of Mitochondrial DNA from the Ancient Tombs of Turfan

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    MtDNA was successfully extracted from ten individual bones (femurs) in the tombs of ancient Jushi in Turfan basin, dated back to the year about 3 000-2 500 years ago. By means of four overlapping primers, we got nucleotide sequence of the 218bp length. Ancient mtDNA was analyzed by the sequencing of hypervariable region Ⅰ of the mtDNA control region. The result shows that 9 haplotypes with 24 polymorphic sites were obtained. The phylogenetic analysis indicated that Mongolians and Altai are the population genetically closest to the Jushi groups and Jushi mtDNA pool being an admixture of eastern Asian and European lineages. So our preliminary data imply that an ancient mingling of Euro-Asian population had existed in Turfan basin prior to the early Iron Age.

  6. [The analysis of the eugenic culture in ancient China]. (United States)

    Jiang, Gong-Cheng; Zong, Hong


    There was a centuries-old culture of eugenics in ancient China. We should have comprehensive and objective cognition of this tradition. The ancient people did not generally advocate marrying at a mature age as do people of modern times. They not only considered the prepotency, but also were influenced by other complicated social factors on the problem of mate selection. Although advocates of coition techniques claimed the purpose of prepotency, the eugenic effect of coition techniques deserved to be suspect. Regarding the aspect of embryo conservation and care, the most significant thing was not so-called "prenatal education", but various antenatal care methods which were proposed by TCM scholars. By making a comparison with modern eugenics, the ancient eugenics had the characteristics of valuing the male child only, commiserating with deformity and being based on familial values.

  7. Enlightenment from ancient Chinese urban and rural stormwater management practices. (United States)

    Wu, Che; Qiao, Mengxi; Wang, Sisi


    Hundreds of years ago, the ancient Chinese implemented several outstanding projects to cope with the changing climate and violent floods. Some of these projects are still in use today. These projects evolved from the experience and knowledge accumulated through the long coexistence of people with nature. The concepts behind these ancient stormwater management practices, such as low-impact development and sustainable drainage systems, are similar to the technology applied in modern stormwater management. This paper presents the cases of the Hani Terrace in Yunnan and the Fushou drainage system of Ganzhou in Jiangxi. The ancient Chinese knowledge behind these cases is seen in the design concepts and the features of these projects. These features help us to understand better their applications in the contemporary environment. In today's more complex environment, integrating traditional and advanced philosophy with modern technologies is extremely useful in building urban and rural stormwater management systems in China.

  8. Cell-penetrating peptides: From mammalian to plant cells


    Eudes, François; Chugh, Archana


    Internalization of cell-penetrating peptides, well described in mammalian cell system, has recently been reported in a range of plant cells by three independent groups. Despite fundamental differences between animal cell and plant cell composition, the CPP uptake pattern between the mammalian system and the plant system is very similar. Tat, Tat-2 pVEC and transportan internalisation is concentration dependent and non saturable, enhanced at low temperature (4°C), and receptor independent. The...

  9. Origin and evolution of developmental enhancers in the mammalian neocortex


    Emera, Deena; Yin, Jun; Reilly, Steven K.; Gockley, Jake; Noonan, James P.


    The neocortex mediates complex cognitive and motor tasks in all mammals. A long-debated question is how this complex structure evolved in primitive mammals. Here we investigate the role of novel mammalian gene regulatory sequences in the emergence of the neocortex and the mechanisms by which these sequences emerged. We find that ∼20% of elements active during human and mouse neocortical development were born in early mammals. These novel mammalian elements enrich for cell migration, cell sign...

  10. Non-flying mammalian fauna of Ampijoroa, Ankarafantsika National Park



    There is no list of the mammalian fauna of Ampijoroa Forest Station, a dry deciduous forest within Ankarafantsika National Park. We set Sherman traps and pitfall traps and carried out transect surveys to survey the non-flying mammalian fauna of Ampijoroa In total, 19 species of mammals were recorded, comprising 10 families. Records include three species of Tenrecidae, two species of Soricidae, one species of Muridae, three species of Nesomyidae, three species of Cheirogaleidae, one species of...

  11. Vascular plants promote ancient peatland carbon loss with climate warming. (United States)

    Walker, Tom N; Garnett, Mark H; Ward, Susan E; Oakley, Simon; Bardgett, Richard D; Ostle, Nicholas J


    Northern peatlands have accumulated one third of the Earth's soil carbon stock since the last Ice Age. Rapid warming across northern biomes threatens to accelerate rates of peatland ecosystem respiration. Despite compensatory increases in net primary production, greater ecosystem respiration could signal the release of ancient, century- to millennia-old carbon from the peatland organic matter stock. Warming has already been shown to promote ancient peatland carbon release, but, despite the key role of vegetation in carbon dynamics, little is known about how plants influence the source of peatland ecosystem respiration. Here, we address this issue using in situ (14)C measurements of ecosystem respiration on an established peatland warming and vegetation manipulation experiment. Results show that warming of approximately 1 °C promotes respiration of ancient peatland carbon (up to 2100 years old) when dwarf-shrubs or graminoids are present, an effect not observed when only bryophytes are present. We demonstrate that warming likely promotes ancient peatland carbon release via its control over organic inputs from vascular plants. Our findings suggest that dwarf-shrubs and graminoids prime microbial decomposition of previously 'locked-up' organic matter from potentially deep in the peat profile, facilitating liberation of ancient carbon as CO2. Furthermore, such plant-induced peat respiration could contribute up to 40% of ecosystem CO2 emissions. If consistent across other subarctic and arctic ecosystems, this represents a considerable fraction of ecosystem respiration that is currently not acknowledged by global carbon cycle models. Ultimately, greater contribution of ancient carbon to ecosystem respiration may signal the loss of a previously stable peatland carbon pool, creating potential feedbacks to future climate change.

  12. Hedera helix L. and damages in Tlos Ancient City

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elinç, Z.K.


    Full Text Available There are various plant types in Tlos Ancient City of Fethiye district in the Province of Mugla, a city where different residential ruins of Lycia Civilization starting from Classical Age until Byzantine Period. Tlos is an important city in West-Lycia and is situated right on the control point of Lycia Way. Hedera helix L. is one of the plants living in this area, which attracts the attention as it mostly harms the ancient ruins. One of the most important reasons why Hedera helix L. is growing commonly in this region is the perfect ecological circumstances for the growth of this plant of the location where this ancient city is situated in. Additionally the fact that the ruins of the city are left on their fate, is another perfect circumstance for the Hedera helix L. to grow. Climbing or creeping stems of Hedera helix L. stick easily to the objects it touches and encircle them. Due to this characteristic, the walls of the ancient city are covered by this plant. Nevertheless, Hedera helix L. does not only harm the ancient constructions and natural rocks but also woody plants. The harm caused by dried out or cut Hedera helix L. are more than the harm caused by them when they were untouched. The subject of this study is to prove the shape and level of the harm caused by Hedera helix L. on ancient ruins of Tlos. At the same time, this study will underline the fighting methods against Hedera helix L. by comparing similar studies in other countries. Knowledge collected after this study will offer an insight into the excavation and restoration studies undertaken in all Mediterranean countries.

  13. [Gout and its manifestations, description and treatment in ancient times]. (United States)

    Alušík, Tomáš; Alušík, Štefan


    Gout is a very old disease, which exists for thousands of years. The first descriptions interpreted as the symptoms of gout can be found already in the Egyptian medical papyri dating to the 3rd mill. BC. In the Ancient world, many physicians dealt with the causes, diagnostics and the treatments of gout, such as Hippocrates of Cos, Diocles of Carystus or Claudios Galenos. A personified gout (as the goddess Podagra) is also to be found in the Ancient mythology and culture. Several human remnants of the people suffering from gout are preserved from the Antiquity as well.

  14. [Ancient mental healing and cognitive behavior therapy in comparison]. (United States)

    Hoellen, B; Laux, J


    Although cognitive-behavior therapy (CBT) is a relatively new psychotherapeutic approach, the theoretical antecedents actually date back two thousand years, to the period of the hellenistic philosophers. The Stoic Epictetus is often acknowledged as the main philosophical father of CBT and especially of rational-emotive therapy (RET). Beck and Ellis frequently noted that they have drawn upon the writings of the ancient philosophers in developing their psychotherapeutic techniques. This paper reviews some implications of hellenistic philosophy for CBT. We like to show that the teachings of the ancient 'healer of souls' are remarkably consistent with the current theoretical framework and techniques of CBT.

  15. Diversity of Ancient Woody Species in Urban Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fornal-Pieniak Beata


    Full Text Available Mostly parks and forest are the most important ‘green islands’ in urban ecological network. Urban forests are belong to green areas and collected many plant species. The main aim of the article was characteristic of ancient plant species in urban forests in Tarnów. The field studies were carried out in years 2011-2012. It covered 80 phytosociological records on the area 500 m2 in herb layer of urban forests and in forest nature on oak-hornbeam. The results showed that many ancient plant species were growing in urban forest but less than in nature reserves

  16. Some geometric models of ancient astronomy with Geogebra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leandro Tortosa


    Full Text Available The main objective of this work is to review and simulate, with the help of GeoGebra, the most important geometric models used by the ancient astronomers to explain the mechanisms governing the trajectories of celestial bodies in the sky. It is well known that ancient astronomers like Ptolemy, Copernicus, Galileo, invented the same complex geometric systems of circles to explain the motion of the celestial bodies. It was not until Kepler, with the introduction of conics in the geometric models, that it was possible to accurately explain the observations with theoretical models.

  17. [On the issue of healers of the Ancient China]. (United States)

    Lazarenko, V G


    The article is devoted to the first physicians of the Ancient China--I-Ing (XVII-XVI centuries BC) and I-Ho (VI-V centuries BC). On the basis of the investigation of the ancient sources the significant input of the mentioned physicians into the development of the traditional Chinese medicine, dietetics and diet therapy included is testified. In addition, their scientific approach to the issues of diagnostics and treatment on the basis of applying the natural philosophy principles of Yin-Yan and Y-Sin is demonstrated.

  18. Uxoricide in Pregnancy: Ancient Greek Domestic Violence in Evolutionary Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susan Deacy


    Full Text Available Previous studies of ancient Greek examples of uxoricide in pregnancy have concluded that the theme is used to suggest tyrannical abuse of power and that the violence is a product of the patriarchal nature of ancient society. This article uses evolutionary analyses of violence during pregnancy to argue that the themes of sexual jealousy and uncertainty over paternity are as crucial as the theme of power to an understanding of these examples and that the examples can be seen as typical instances of spousal abuse as it occurs in all types of society.

  19. A modern appraisal of ancient Etruscan herbal practices

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Harrison, Adrian Paul; Bartels, E.M.


    Individualts in antiquity would have been exposed to both cheese and red wine and perhaps as many as 10-40% of the population would have suffered at some time in their life from a migraine headache. Furthermore, individuals in qntiquity would also have been exposed to their fair share of childhoo...... of the combined knowledge of the "Etruscan herbal" and its possible physiological effects, raises the issue of the importance of ancient treatments in today's society, particularly since we are still plagued by many of the same ailments as the ancient Etruscans....

  20. [Medical myths and notions in Ancient Greece]. (United States)

    Boulogne, J


    The article deals with the views on health and disease prevalent in Ancient Greece, the cradle of modern European medicine, focusing on the ever-present myths functioning in that realm despite attempts to rationally explain medical phenomena. On the basis of the works of Hippocrates and Galen, the author has distinguished five different epistemological attitudes towards those phenomena: the holistic, macrocosmological, monistic, anti-hypothetical and eclectic. The first was based on the idea of mechanical and logical causes. In medicine it is marked by determinism connected with climatic conditions. Hippocrates believed that health depended on the weather, in particular on the effects of winds, types of water and properties of soil. Myth emerged in this conception in the way matter - earth, water, air and fire - was conceived, particular in the properties ascribed to them: cold, humidity, aridity and warmth. The author charges that this conception was permeated with ethnocentrism and cites examples invoked by Hippocrates on the basis of his observations on the Scythians. The macrocosmological attitude involves subordinating medicine to cosmology. Man's body is a microcosm. The author cites the treatise 'On Diets', in which the greatest importance both in the universe and in processes taking place in the human body as ascribed to two factors - fire and water. Their combination was said to have played a crucial role in the typology of corporal and mental constitutions. Those features, together with the seasons of the year, mode of behaviour and food, constitute the four forces guiding vital processes. The author then presents the embryogenic conception contained in the cosmological treatise. It was based on such things as numerological speculations, hence - despite its rationalistic assumptions, consigns it to the mythic. The third attitude, the monistic approach, presents a treatise ascribed to Hippocrates 'On the Sacred Disease' and dealing with epilepsy. The

  1. How stable are the 'stable ancient shields'? (United States)

    Viola, Giulio; Mattila, Jussi


    "Archean cratons are relatively flat, stable regions of the crust that have remained undeformed since the Precambrian, forming the ancient cores of the continents" (King, EPSL, 2005). While this type of statement is supported by a wealth of constraints in the case of episodes of thoroughgoing ductile deformation affecting shield regions of Archean and also Peleoproterozoic age, a growing amount of research indicates that shields are not nearly as structurally stable within the broad field of environmental conditions leading to brittle deformation. In fact, old crystalline basements usually present compelling evidence of long brittle deformation histories, often very complex and challenging to unfold. Recent structural and geochronological studies point to a significant mechanical instability of the shield areas, wherein large volumes of 'stable' rocks actually can become saturated with fractures and brittle faults soon after regional cooling exhumes them to below c. 300-350° C. How cold, rigid and therefore strong shields respond to applied stresses remains, however, still poorly investigated and understood. This in turn precludes a better definition of the shallow rheological properties of large, old crystalline blocks. In particular, we do not yet have good constraints on the mechanisms of mechanical reactivation that control the partial (if not total) accommodation of new deformational episodes by preexisting structures, which remains a key to untangle brittle histories lasting several hundred Myr. In our analysis, we use the Svecofennian Shield (SS) as an example of a supposedly 'stable' region with Archean nucleii and Paleoproterozoic cratonic areas to show how it is possible to unravel the details of brittle histories spanning more than 1.5 Gyr. New structural and geochronological results from Finland are integrated with a review of existing data from Sweden to explore how the effects of far-field stresses are partitioned within a shield, which was growing

  2. 75 FR 57825 - Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition Determinations: “Ancient Chinese Bronzes... (United States)


    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF STATE Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition Determinations: ``Ancient Chinese Bronzes From the... objects to be included in the exhibition ``Ancient Chinese Bronzes from the Shouyang Studio: The...

  3. 76 FR 23642 - Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition Determinations: “Marajo: Ancient Ceramics... (United States)


    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF STATE Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition Determinations: ``Marajo: Ancient Ceramics at the... ``Marajo: Ancient Ceramics at the Mouth of the Amazon'' imported from abroad for temporary...

  4. 中国古代的统计分析%Statistical analysis in ancient China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    Analyzing social and economic problems through statistics is one of an important aspects of statistics thoughts in ancient China. This paper demonstrates some situations of statistical analysis in ancient China.

  5. Green Restaurant: An Ancient Touch of Chinese Herbal Food

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ambra Schillirò


    @@ The first time Ⅰ entered the restaurant Green,inside the five-star Radegast Lake View Hotel in Chongwen District of Beijing,I was incredibly surprised.All around were red lights,a room reminiscent of the splendor of ancient China and simply delicious herbal cuisine.

  6. Green Restaurant: An Ancient Touch of Chinese Herbal Food

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ambra; Schilliro


    The first time I entered the restaurant Green, inside the five-star Radegast Lake View Hotel in Chongwen District of Beijing, I was incredibly surprised. All around were red lights, a room reminiscent of the splendor of ancient China and simply delicious herbal cuisine.

  7. Integrate the Arts. The Art of Ancient Egypt. (United States)

    Parks, Mary


    Presents three art projects that can bring to life the study of ancient Egypt for elementary students. After researching Egypt's history and culture, students can create King Tut masks, make Cleopatra headdresses, and craft cartouche pendants. The article describes the materials needed and steps required to complete each project. (SM)

  8. Power and Gender in Ancient Egypt: The Case of Hatshepsut (United States)

    Hilliard, Kristina; Wurtzel, Kate


    Hatshepsut (1479-1458 B.C.E) ruled New Kingdom Egypt for roughly 20 years as one of the few female pharaohs in the history of ancient Egypt. Her rule began when her husband died and her stepson was too young to be pharaoh. To legitimize her role as pharaoh, Hatshepsut began a significant building campaign by constructing numerous images, temples,…

  9. Preservation potential of ancient plankton DNA in Pleistocene marine sediments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boere, A.C.; Rijpstra, W.I.C.; de Lange, G.J.; Sinninghe Damsté, J.S.; Coolen, M.J.L.


    Recent studies have shown that ancient plankton DNA can be recovered from Holocene lacustrine and marine sediments, including from species that do not leave diagnostic microscopic fossils in the sediment record. Therefore, the analysis of this so-called fossil plankton DNA is a promising approach fo

  10. Characteristics Analysis on Acupuncture Treatment of Stranguria in Ancient Times

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LIU Li-gong; GU Jie; XIAO Yuan-chun


    This paper makes a statistical analysis on the acupuncture treatment of stranguria recorded in 62 ancient books with computer. The statistics show that the frequently treated meridians are Conception Vessel,three yin meridians of foot, and Bladder Meridian; the commonly treated areas are lower abdomen, midial aspects of legs, and lower back; the commonly used techniques are moxibustion, and needling.

  11. Molecular Evidence for Ancient Asexuality in Timema Stick Insects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schwander, Tanja; Henry, Lee; Crespi, Bernard J.


    Asexuality is rare in animals in spite of its apparent advantage relative to sexual reproduction, indicating that it must be associated with profound costs [1-9]. One expectation is that reproductive advantages gained by new asexual lineages will be quickly eroded over time [3, 5-7]. Ancient asexual

  12. Identification of milk component in ancient food residue by proteomics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chuan Hong

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Proteomic approaches based on mass spectrometry have been recently used in archaeological and art researches, generating promising results for protein identification. Little information is known about eastward spread and eastern limits of prehistoric milking in eastern Eurasia. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDING: In this paper, an ancient visible food remain from Subeixi Cemeteries (cal. 500 to 300 years BC of the Turpan Basin in Xinjiang, China, preliminarily determined containing 0.432 mg/kg cattle casein with ELISA, was analyzed by using an improved method based on liquid chromatography (LC coupled with MALDI-TOF/TOF-MS to further identify protein origin. The specific sequence of bovine casein and the homology sequence of goat/sheep casein were identified. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The existence of milk component in ancient food implies goat/sheep and cattle milking in ancient Subeixi region, the furthest eastern location of prehistoric milking in the Old World up to date. It is envisioned that this work provides a new approach for ancient residue analysis and other archaeometry field.

  13. Aberration corrected STEM to study an ancient hair dyeing formula (United States)

    Patriarche, G.; Van Elslande, E.; Castaing, J.; Walter, P.


    Lead-based chemistry was initiated in ancient Egypt for cosmetic preparation more than 4000 years ago. Here, we study a hair-dyeing recipe using lead salts described in text since Greco-Roman times. We report direct evidence about the shape and distribution of PbS nanocrystals that form within the hair during blackening.

  14. Women’s Voice and Religious Utterances in Ancient Greece

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manuela Giordano


    Full Text Available This paper tackles the issue of women and religion through a particular looking glass: religious utterances such as curses, supplication, and prayer, as reflected in some passages from ancient Greek epic and tragedy—pivotal literary genres in the ideological discourse of the Greek polis.

  15. Tech Talk for Social Studies Teachers: Ancient Egypt. (United States)

    Pahl, Ronald H.


    Presents an annotated bibliography of 10 Web sites concerning ancient Egypt that have materials appropriate for social studies classes. Includes virtual tours of Egypt and specific temples, explorations of the pyramids, archaeological and geographic information, and information on the Egyptian "Book of the Dead." (MJP)

  16. Exhibition of Origin of Ancient Chinese Characters Held in Japan

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    <正>It was rainy season in Kanazawa, the seat of the government of Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan in the latter half of June. The flowers on both sides of the street were blossoming brightly in the drizzling rain. The exhibition "Origin of Ancient Chinese Characters" was mounted in the Ishikawa Pre-fectural Museum of Art in downtown Kanazawa on June 25.

  17. Acoustics of ancient Greek and Roman theaters in use today

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gade, Anders Christian; Angelakis, Konstantinos


    In the Mediteranan area a large number of open, ancient Greek and Roman theatres are still today facing a busy schedule of performances including both classical and contemporary works of dance, drama, concerts, and opera. During the EU funded ``Erato'' project and a subsequent master thesis project...

  18. Communication and Culture in Ancient India and China. (United States)

    Oliver, Robert T.

    The rhetorical theories and practices of ancient India and China provide the themes of this book. An examination of the relationship between culture and rhetoric, East and West, opens the book. The rhetorical milieu of India, its philosophy, social system, and uses of speech, leads to a probing of the caste system and speech of the Brahmins.…

  19. Theory-of-mind reasoning in Ancient China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Emde Boas, P.


    Ancient Chinese literature on strategic theory goes back to ideas proposed almost 3000 years ago, but which were first written down during the late Spring and Autumn period and the Warring States period (around 500 BC). The most famous work is the Art of War from Sun Tzu. While Sun Tzu extensively r

  20. The Image of Daniel: An Ancient Graphic Organizer (United States)

    Li, Loretta F.


    Teachers who use graphic organizers find that students' memory of important material is strengthened. Graphic organizers also lend themselves to the presentation of material in an interdisciplinary fashion. An example of a successful graphic organizer from religion and ancient history is the image of Nebuchadnezzar's dream that was interpreted by…

  1. Ancient whole grain gluten-free egg-free Pasta (United States)

    The USDA food guide recommends that at least ½ of all the grains eaten should be whole grains. The FDA allows food Health Claim labels for food containing 51% whole gains and 11 g of dietary fiber per serving. This is the only report demonstrating innovative ancient whole grain, gluten-free, egg-fre...

  2. Atmospheric science: Ancient air caught by shooting stars (United States)

    Zahnle, Kevin; Buick, Roger


    Ashes of ancient meteors recovered from a 2.7-billion-year-old lake bed imply that the upper atmosphere was rich in oxygen at a time when all other evidence implies that the atmosphere was oxygen-free. See Letter p.235

  3. On the Development and Evolution of Astronomy in ancient Egypt (United States)

    Maravelias, S. E.

    In the present paper the development and evolution of astronomy in = Ancient Egypt are briefly examined. Emphasis is given to the = applications of astronomy on: (i) the orientation of temples and = pyramids, and the subsequent determination of the year; (ii) the = reorientation of temples --after the lapse of several centuries-- (due = to the fact that the priesthood was empirically aware of the precession = of equinoxes, and the subsequent use of this very fact in order to = estimate the archaeological age of temples, tombs and pyramids; (iii) = the heliacal rising of Sirius, which was used by ancient = priests-astronomers in order to fix the New Year's Day and determine the = seasons of the civil year, although the discre pancy of the Sothic cycle = in their calendrical system was not seriously taken into account. = Finally the conclusion put forward is that astronomy in Ancient Egypt = never reached the grounds of pure science (as in Ancient Greece), at = least before the Ptolemaic era, but always remained under the influence = of traditionalism and mythology pertaining more to the sphere of = religion and dogma.

  4. Using Ancient DNA to Understand Evolutionary and Ecological Processes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Orlando, Ludovic Antoine Alexandre; Cooper, Alan


    Ancient DNA provides a unique means to record genetic change through time and directly observe evolutionary and ecological processes. Although mostly based on mitochondrial DNA, the increasing availability of genomic sequences is leading to unprecedented levels of resolution. Temporal studies of ...

  5. Teaching Leadership: Graduate Students and Freshmen Learn from Ancient Leaders. (United States)

    McCarthy, Joseph M.

    This paper describes a pedagogic strategy that uses ancient texts for teaching college freshmen academic skills, habits of inquiry, and leadership. Applicability of these pedagogic ideas to a graduate course in leadership is discussed. Among the texts discussed are: (1) Gilgamesh; (2) "The Odyssey"; (3) "Oedipus the King"; (4)…

  6. Another Way of Knowing: Visualizing the Ancient Silk Routes (United States)

    Bisland, Beverly Milner


    One way that people learn, remember and communicate is visually. We combine past experiences with new visual information to construct meaning. In this study, elementary teachers introduced their students to the peoples and places of the ancient silk routes using illustrations from two children's picture books, "Marco Polo," written by…

  7. Antioxidant activities of selective gluten free ancient grains (United States)

    Ancient grains were known for special nutritional values along with gluten free qualities. Amaranth, quinoa, teff, buckwheat flours were evaluated for pasting properties, water holding capacity, phenolic contents, and antioxidant activities (free and bound). They all had higher water holding capacit...

  8. Transdermal opioid patches for pain treatment in ancient Greece

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Harrison, Adrian Paul; Hansen, Steen Honore'; Bartels, Else M.


    Pain treatment in ancient Greece, and through the middle ages in Europe, was to a great extent based on the expertise of the Greek physician Galen (c. 129-200 A.D.). Galen makes particular reference to "Olympic Victor's Dark Ointment" (OVDO), which is listed with a number of collyria. Galen states...

  9. Ningwu——An Ancient Pass On The Plateau

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    <正>Ningwu situated on the Loess Plateau in north of Shanxi Province is one of the three passes along the Great Wall. The other two are the Pian Pass in the west and the Yanmen Pass in the east. In the ancient times, it had been a key military town in the northern Chinese borders.

  10. Teaching an Ancient Performing Art in a Modern Context (United States)

    Poursabahian, Joyce Paul


    This article briefly discusses the challenges of teaching the 2,000 year-old classical dance form of Bharatanatyam to a student population that is alienated from its mythological framework. Bharatanatyam teachers today are responsible for passing on the technique, grammar, and artistic character of this ancient performing art to the current…

  11. Chinese Ancient Coins Academic Exchange Delegation Visits France and Austria

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zuo; Fengqiang


    <正>To further strengthen nongovernmental cultural exchanges,a Chinese delegation visited France and Austria from September 23 to 30for academic exchange on ancient coin.They had fruitful exchanges with coin experts of the two countries at the invitation of the France-China Culture and Art Exchange Centre and the Austria-China Friendship Association for Culture and Art Exchange.

  12. The Great Pyramid Builders: An Integrated Theme on Ancient Egypt (United States)

    Stone, Brian


    This article describes a themed classroom project designed to teach about the culture and civilization of ancient Egypt. In preparing the project, it is noted that teachers should remember that different learning styles, including activities that provide meaningful experiences, are appropriate in accommodating the various ways children learn.…

  13. Ancient Polish Books in Buryatian Republic near Mongolia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanna Panasiuk


    Full Text Available Ancient Polish books in Buryatian Republic near Mongolia: presentation of the problem and topics for the furhter research.   Przedstawienie problemów badawczych związanych ze starymi polskimi księgami znalezionymi w Buriacji.

  14. Plato and Play: Taking Education Seriously in Ancient Greece (United States)

    D'Angour, Armand


    In this article, the author outlines Plato's notions of play in ancient Greek culture and shows how the philosopher's views on play can be best appreciated against the background of shifting meanings and evaluations of play in classical Greece. Play--in various forms such as word play, ritual, and music--proved central to the development of…

  15. Climate changes may lead to the collapse of ancient civilizations

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    @@ Studies of an international research consortium indicate that severe monsoon changes might have simultaneously accelerated the fall of two great ancient civilizations, the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD), one of the most prosperous reigns in Chinese history, and the Maya civilization in Meso-America that ended in 830 AD.

  16. Another Way of Knowing: Visualizing the Ancient Silk Routes (United States)

    Bisland, Beverly Milner


    One way that people learn, remember and communicate is visually. We combine past experiences with new visual information to construct meaning. In this study, elementary teachers introduced their students to the peoples and places of the ancient silk routes using illustrations from two children's picture books, "Marco Polo," written by Gian Paolo…

  17. The Ethical Power of Music: Ancient Greek and Chinese Thoughts (United States)

    Wang, Yuhwen


    Both the ancient Chinese and Greeks from around the fifth century B.C. to around third century A.D. recognized the immense impact that music has on the development of one's personality, and both regarded it as crucial in the cultivation of proper disposition in youth. Music's power over one's ethos--that is, human disposition--was emphasized by…

  18. An Old Town on the Ancient Tea-Horse Trail

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    FOR centuries, Southwest China's Yunnan Province has been known as home of black tea. It was in the Tang Dynasty(618 - 907) that caravans began to transport bricks of tea from Xishuangbanna and Simao to India, passing through Yunnan's Dali and Lijiang and Tibet. The route became known as the Ancient Tea-Horse Trail.

  19. [Application of studies on popular words in the systematization of ancient medical books]. (United States)

    Fan, D; Lai, W


    Based on the arrangement of Renho Temple edition of Taisu (Extremely Plain), as an example, it can be seen that by correcting the wrong popular words in ancient medical books, the causes of mistakes of ancient editions and solution for annotations of difficult terms of ancient words in the medical books are of significance.

  20. Microstructures of ancient and modern cast silver–copper alloys

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Northover, S.M., E-mail: [Materials Engineering, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA (United Kingdom); Northover, J.P., E-mail: [Department of Materials, University of Oxford, Parks Rd, Oxford OX1 3PH,UK (United Kingdom)


    The microstructures of modern cast Sterling silver and of cast silver objects about 2500 years old have been compared using optical microscopy (OM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM), energy dispersive X-ray microanalysis (EDX) and electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD). Microstructures of both ancient and modern alloys were typified by silver-rich dendrites with a few pools of eutectic and occasional cuprite particles with an oxidised rim on the outer surface. EBSD showed the dendrites to have a complex internal structure, often involving extensive twinning. There was copious intragranular precipitation within the dendrites, in the form of very fine copper-rich rods which TEM, X-ray diffraction (XRD), SEM and STEM suggest to be of a metastable face-centred-cubic (FCC) phase with a cube–cube orientation relationship to the silver-rich matrix but a higher silver content than the copper-rich β in the eutectic. Samples from ancient objects displayed a wider range of microstructures including a fine scale interpenetration of the adjoining grains not seen in the modern material. Although this study found no unambiguous evidence that this resulted from microstructural change produced over archaeological time, the copper supersaturation remaining after intragranular precipitation suggests that such changes, previously proposed for wrought and annealed material, may indeed occur in ancient silver castings. - Highlights: • Similar twinned structures and oxidised surfaces seen in ancient and modern cast silver • General precipitation of fine Cu-rich rods apparently formed by discontinuous precipitation is characteristic of as-cast silver. • The fine rods are cube-cube related to the matrix in contrast with the eutectic. • The silver-rich phase remains supersaturated with copper. • Possibly age-related grain boundary features seen in ancient cast silver.

  1. Amino acids in the cultivation of mammalian cells. (United States)

    Salazar, Andrew; Keusgen, Michael; von Hagen, Jörg


    Amino acids are crucial for the cultivation of mammalian cells. This importance of amino acids was realized soon after the development of the first cell lines, and a solution of a mixture of amino acids has been supplied to cultured cells ever since. The importance of amino acids is further pronounced in chemically defined mammalian cell culture media, making the consideration of their biological and chemical properties necessary. Amino acids concentrations have been traditionally adjusted to their cellular consumption rates. However, since changes in the metabolic equilibrium of amino acids can be caused by changes in extracellular concentrations, metabolomics in conjunction with flux balance analysis is being used in the development of culture media. The study of amino acid transporters is also gaining importance since they control the intracellular concentrations of these molecules and are influenced by conditions in cell culture media. A better understanding of the solubility, stability, dissolution kinetics, and interactions of these molecules is needed for an exploitation of these properties in the development of dry powdered chemically defined media for mammalian cells. Due to the complexity of these mixtures however, this has proven to be challenging. Studying amino acids in mammalian cell culture media will help provide a better understanding of how mammalian cells in culture interact with their environment. It would also provide insight into the chemical behavior of these molecules in solutions of complex mixtures, which is important in the understanding of the contribution of individual amino acids to protein structure.

  2. The mammalian fauna from the Central Himalaya, Nepal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hem Bahadur Katuwal


    Full Text Available Nepal harbors unique mammalian fauna, but it is poorly studied at higher elevation. Mammalian fauna were recorded in Manaslu Conservation Area, Dudhkunda and Dudhkoshi valley of Solukhumbu district and Kanchenjunga Conservation Area of Nepal during March 2011 to April 2013 along the trail and the study plots from 700m to 4400m a.s.l. Semi-structured interviews were made with local people to understand their behavior and habitats. Altogether, 29 mammalian fauna were recorded. Five species were recorded new for the areas. Overall, Carnivore species (nine were encountered more, followed by species of the order Cetartiodactyla (seven. The highest number of mammalian fauna (18 was identified from Manaslu Conservation Area whereas the least (11 from Dudhkunda and Dudhkoshi valley. Human wildlife conflict was frequent with Himalayan Goral (Naemorhedus goral, Barking Deer (Muntiacus vaginalis, Himalayan Tahr (Hemitragus jemlahicus, Rhesus Macaque (Macaca mulatta, Nepal Grey Langur (Semnopithecus schistaceus and Himalayan Black Bear (Ursus thibetanus for crop depredation in these areas. Although mammalian research started a long time ago, scenario of comprehensive research is not satisfactory in the Central Himalaya, Nepal.

  3. Effect of ancient population structure on the degree of polymorphism shared between modern human populations and ancient hominins. (United States)

    Eriksson, Anders; Manica, Andrea


    Recent comparisons between anatomically modern humans and ancient genomes of other hominins have raised the tantalizing, and hotly debated, possibility of hybridization. Although several tests of hybridization have been devised, they all rely on the degree to which different modern populations share genetic polymorphisms with the ancient genomes of other hominins. However, spatial population structure is expected to generate genetic patterns similar to those that might be attributed to hybridization. To investigate this problem, we take Neanderthals as a case study, and build a spatially explicit model of the shared history of anatomically modern humans and this hominin. We show that the excess polymorphism shared between Eurasians and Neanderthals is compatible with scenarios in which no hybridization occurred, and is strongly linked to the strength of population structure in ancient populations. Thus, we recommend caution in inferring admixture from geographic patterns of shared polymorphisms, and argue that future attempts to investigate ancient hybridization between humans and other hominins should explicitly account for population structure.

  4. The Artistic Expression of Ancient Epic in Ancient China%中古咏史诗的艺术表现

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    王长华; 刘静


    The artistic expression of ancient epic in ancient China is the combination of emotions and rea-son,which makes the achievements much more than ever before.The poets use the past to express themselves,their ideal and the lessons which they think should be learned from history.The ancient ep-ic combines the expression of history,the expression of knowledge with the expression of emotions, which is linked to the time background of the poets,and has a practical significance.In the backdrop of literature consciousness,the creation of the"poetry affection and yet bonding"argues to promote the ancient epic to be rich in artistic expression.The ancient epic at this point is done with the focus on the narrative and lyric,and the combination between profound history and profound reality,reason and e-motion.%中古时期的咏史诗艺术表现情理结合,创作成就远超前代。中古诗人借史咏怀,寄托理想,殷鉴兴废。咏史诗熔述史、达识、抒情为一炉,与诗人的时代背景相联系,具有现实意义。在文学自觉的大背景下,“诗缘情而绮靡”的创作主张,促使咏史诗在艺术表现上力求丰富。中古咏史诗在这一点上正是做到了叙事与抒情各有侧重,深邃的历史感与深刻的现实性相结合,理与情的统一。

  5. Rapid, modular and reliable construction of complex mammalian gene circuits. (United States)

    Guye, Patrick; Li, Yinqing; Wroblewska, Liliana; Duportet, Xavier; Weiss, Ron


    We developed a framework for quick and reliable construction of complex gene circuits for genetically engineering mammalian cells. Our hierarchical framework is based on a novel nucleotide addressing system for defining the position of each part in an overall circuit. With this framework, we demonstrate construction of synthetic gene circuits of up to 64 kb in size comprising 11 transcription units and 33 basic parts. We show robust gene expression control of multiple transcription units by small molecule inducers in human cells with transient transfection and stable chromosomal integration of these circuits. This framework enables development of complex gene circuits for engineering mammalian cells with unprecedented speed, reliability and scalability and should have broad applicability in a variety of areas including mammalian cell fermentation, cell fate reprogramming and cell-based assays.

  6. A common tendency for phylogenetic overdispersion in mammalian assemblages. (United States)

    Cooper, Natalie; Rodríguez, Jesús; Purvis, Andy


    Competition has long been proposed as an important force in structuring mammalian communities. Although early work recognized that competition has a phylogenetic dimension, only with recent increases in the availability of phylogenies have true phylogenetic investigations of mammalian community structure become possible. We test whether the phylogenetic structure of 142 assemblages from three mammalian clades (New World monkeys, North American ground squirrels and Australasian possums) shows the imprint of competition. The full set of assemblages display a highly significant tendency for members to be more distantly related than expected by chance (phylogenetic overdispersion). The overdispersion is also significant within two of the clades (monkeys and squirrels) separately. This is the first demonstration of widespread overdispersion in mammal assemblages and implies an important role for either competition between close relatives where traits are conserved, habitat filtering where distant relatives share convergent traits, or both.

  7. Structure and Function of Mammalian Carbohydrate-Lectin Interactions (United States)

    Anderson, Kevin; Evers, David; Rice, Kevin G.

    Over the past three decades the field of glycobiology has expanded beyond a basic understanding of the structure and biosynthesis of glycoprotein, proteoglycans, and glycolipids toward a more detailed picture of how these molecules afford communication through binding to mammalian lectins. Although the number of different mammalian lectin domains appears to be finite and even much smaller than early estimates predicated based on the diversity of glycan structures, nature appears capable of using these in numerous combinations to fine tune specificity. The following provides an overview of the major classes of mammalian lectins and discusses their glycan binding specificity. The review provides a snapshot of the field of glycobiology that continues to grow providing an increasing number of examples of biological processes that rely upon glycan-lectin binding.

  8. The classics of ancient Chinese literature%中国古代文学的经典

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    This essay discusses the ancient Chinese literary classics by borrowingthe prospective of "canon" from the studies of Western literature.Studying thecentral issues of establishment,quality,type,and influence of ancient classics,the authors attempt to present their ancient history,decadent practices,and theircentral position in ancient literature and literary criticism.Moreover,from abroader perspective of modem theory,this essay argues that ancient classics arepart of the important resources to release the tension between the traditional andthe modem world.

  9. Role of ortho-retronasal olfaction in mammalian cortical evolution. (United States)

    Rowe, Timothy B; Shepherd, Gordon M


    Fossils of mammals and their extinct relatives among cynodonts give evidence of correlated transformations affecting olfaction as well as mastication, head movement, and ventilation, and suggest evolutionary coupling of these seemingly separate anatomical regions into a larger integrated system of ortho-retronasal olfaction. Evidence from paleontology and physiology suggests that ortho-retronasal olfaction played a critical role at three stages of mammalian cortical evolution: early mammalian brain development was driven in part by ortho-retronasal olfaction; the bauplan for neocortex had higher-level association functions derived from olfactory cortex; and human cortical evolution was enhanced by ortho-retronasal smell.

  10. Expression and purification of splicing proteins from mammalian cells. (United States)

    Allemand, Eric; Hastings, Michelle L


    Pre-mRNA splicing is a complex process that is carried out by a large ribonucleoprotein enzyme, termed the spliceosome, which comprises up to 200 proteins. Despite this complexity, the role of individual spliceosomal proteins in the splicing reaction has been successfully investigated using cell-free assays. In many cases, the splicing factor of interest must be expressed and purified in order to study its function in vitro. Posttranslational modifications such as phosphorylation, methylation, acetylation, and ubiquitination of splicing factors are important for activity. Thus, their purification from mammalian cells presents numerous advantages. Here, we describe a method for expression and purification of splicing proteins from mammalian cells.

  11. Retention of the Native Epigenome in Purified Mammalian Chromatin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas H Ehrensberger

    Full Text Available A protocol is presented for the isolation of native mammalian chromatin as fibers of 25-250 nucleosomes under conditions that preserve the natural epigenetic signature. The material is composed almost exclusively of histones and DNA and conforms to the structure expected by electron microscopy. All sequences probed for were retained, indicating that the material is representative of the majority of the genome. DNA methylation marks and histone marks resembled the patterns observed in vivo. Importantly, nucleosome positions also remained largely unchanged, except on CpG islands, where nucleosomes were found to be unstable. The technical challenges of reconstituting biochemical reactions with native mammalian chromatin are discussed.

  12. The meiosis-specific modification of mammalian telomeres. (United States)

    Shibuya, Hiroki; Watanabe, Yoshinori


    During meiosis, rapid chromosome movements within the nucleus enable homologous chromosomes to acquire physical juxtaposition. In most organisms, chromosome ends, telomeres, tethered to the transmembrane LINC-complex mediate this movement by transmitting cytoskeletal forces to the chromosomes. While the majority of molecular studies have been performed using lower eukaryotes as model systems, recent studies have identified mammalian meiotic telomere regulators, including the LINC-complex SUN1/KASH5 and the meiosis-specific telomere binding protein TERB1. This review highlights the molecular regulations of mammalian meiotic telomeres in comparison with other model systems and discusses some future perspectives.

  13. Ion channels that control fertility in mammalian spermatozoa. (United States)

    Navarro, Betsy; Kirichok, Yuriy; Chung, Jean-Ju; Clapham, David E


    Whole-cell voltage clamp of mammalian spermatozoa was first achieved in 2006. This technical advance, combined with genetic deletion strategies, makes unambiguous identification of sperm ion channel currents possible. This review summarizes the ion channel currents that have been directly measured in mammalian sperm, and their physiological roles in fertilization. The predominant currents are a Ca2+-selective current requiring expression of the 4 mCatSper genes, and a rectifying K+ current with properties most similar to mSlo3. Intracellular alkalinization activates both channels and induces hyperactivated motility.

  14. Structural and functional characterization of CATH_BRALE, the defense molecule in the ancient salmonoid, Brachymystax lenok. (United States)

    Li, Zheng; Zhang, Songyan; Gao, Jiuxiang; Guang, Huijuan; Tian, Yuanyong; Zhao, Zongmao; Wang, Yipeng; Yu, Haining


    Thick-lipped lenok, Brachymystax lenok is one of the ancient fish species in China and northeast Asia countries. Due to the overfishing, the population of lenok has been declined significantly. Cathelicidins are innate immune effectors that possess both bactericidal activities and immunomodulatory functions. This report identifies and characterizes the salmonoid cathelicidin (CATH_BRALE) from this ancient fish. It consists of open reading frame (ORF) of 886 bp encoding the putative peptide of 199 amino acids. Sequence alignment with other representative salmonid cathelicidins displayed two distinctive features of current lenok cathelicidin: high level of arginine, resulting in high positive charge and glycine residues, which is significantly different from most acknowledged types of cathelicidins; and the six-aminoacid tandem repeated sequence of RPGGGS detected in a variable number of copies among fish cathelicidins, suggesting the existence of a genetically unstable region similar to that found in some mammalian cathelicidins. Expression of CATH_BRALE is predominantly found in gill, with lower levels in the gastrointestinal tract and spleen. The homology modeled structure of CATH_BRALE exhibits structural features of antiparallel b-sheets flanked by a-helices that are representative of small cationic cathelicidin family peptides. CATH_BRALE possesses much stronger antimicrobial activity against gram-negative bacteria than that of the human ortholog, LL-37. The growth of two typical fish bacterial pathogens, gram-negative bacterium of Aeromonas salmonicida and Aeromonas hydrophila was substantially inhibited by synthetic CATH_BRALE, with both MICs as low as 9.38 mM.

  15. The UlaG protein family defines novel structural and functional motifs grafted on an ancient RNase fold

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coll Miquel


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Bacterial populations are highly successful at colonizing new habitats and adapting to changing environmental conditions, partly due to their capacity to evolve novel virulence and metabolic pathways in response to stress conditions and to shuffle them by horizontal gene transfer (HGT. A common theme in the evolution of new functions consists of gene duplication followed by functional divergence. UlaG, a unique manganese-dependent metallo-β-lactamase (MBL enzyme involved in L-ascorbate metabolism by commensal and symbiotic enterobacteria, provides a model for the study of the emergence of new catalytic activities from the modification of an ancient fold. Furthermore, UlaG is the founding member of the so-called UlaG-like (UlaGL protein family, a recently established and poorly characterized family comprising divalent (and perhaps trivalent metal-binding MBLs that catalyze transformations on phosphorylated sugars and nucleotides. Results Here we combined protein structure-guided and sequence-only molecular phylogenetic analyses to dissect the molecular evolution of UlaG and to study its phylogenomic distribution, its relatedness with present-day UlaGL protein sequences and functional conservation. Phylogenetic analyses indicate that UlaGL sequences are present in Bacteria and Archaea, with bona fide orthologs found mainly in mammalian and plant-associated Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria. The incongruence between the UlaGL tree and known species trees indicates exchange by HGT and suggests that the UlaGL-encoding genes provided a growth advantage under changing conditions. Our search for more distantly related protein sequences aided by structural homology has uncovered that UlaGL sequences have a common evolutionary origin with present-day RNA processing and metabolizing MBL enzymes widespread in Bacteria, Archaea, and Eukarya. This observation suggests an ancient origin for the UlaGL family within the broader trunk

  16. Multidisciplinary studies on ancient sandstone quarries of Western Sardinia (Italy). (United States)

    Grillo, Silvana Maria; Del Vais, Carla; Naitza, Stefano


    The ancient coastal quarries of Mediterranean are increasingly considered geosites of multidisciplinary relevance. They are sites of historical-archaeological interest that show ancient techniques of stone extraction; they are significant for cultural heritage conservation and restoration, as sources of the stones used in ancient buildings and monuments; they are sites of geological relevance, as often retain important stratigraphic sections; they are also useful markers of secular changes in the sea level. A multisciplinary study is in progress on the ancient quarries of the Sinis region (western Sardinia island), integrating archaeological, geological, minero-petrographical data. In Sardinia, coastal quarries have been established from Punic and Roman times. Many of them exploited Quaternary sediments along the southern and western coasts of the island. They consist of middle-late Pleistocene marine conglomerates and carbonate sandstones, and of coastal (aeolian) carbonate sandstones. Sandstone blocks of different sizes have been widely used in ancient cities for buildings, defensive works, harbours, etc. Three main areas of stone extraction (San Giovanni di Sinis, Punta Maimoni, Is Arutas) have been so far recognized in the Sinis. GIS-supported mapping and documentation of the sites includes their geology and stratigraphy, the extension and layout of the quarries, and an evaluation of volumes of extracted rocks. Documented archaeological evidences include ancient extraction fronts, spoil heaps, working areas, working traces in the old fronts, transport routes of blocks, and traces of loading facilities. The study is aimed at reconstructing the relationships of the quarries with the urban areas of Sinis, as the ancient Punic-Roman city of Tharros. Consequently, a minero-petrographical characterization (optical microscopy, XRD) is performed on sandstones sampled in each quarry, and in historical buildings in Tharros and other centres of the region (Cabras

  17. Application of airborne remote sensing to the ancient Pompeii site (United States)

    Vitiello, Fausto; Giordano, Antonio; Borfecchia, Flavio; Martini, Sandro; De Cecco, Luigi


    The ancient Pompeii site is in the Sarno Valley, an area of about 400 km2 in the South of Italy near Naples, that was utilized by man since old time (thousands of years ago). Actually the valley is under critical environmental conditions because of the relevant industrial development. ENEA is conducting various studies and research in the valley. ENEA is employing historical research, ground campaigns, cartography and up-to-date airborne multispectral remote sensing technologies to make a geographical information system. Airborne remote sensing technologies are very suitable for situations as that of the Sarno Valley. The paper describes the archaeological application of the research in progress as regarding the ancient site of Pompeii and its fluvial port.

  18. Supervolcanoes within an ancient volcanic province in Arabia Terra, Mars. (United States)

    Michalski, Joseph R; Bleacher, Jacob E


    Several irregularly shaped craters located within Arabia Terra, Mars, represent a new type of highland volcanic construct and together constitute a previously unrecognized Martian igneous province. Similar to terrestrial supervolcanoes, these low-relief paterae possess a range of geomorphic features related to structural collapse, effusive volcanism and explosive eruptions. Extruded lavas contributed to the formation of enigmatic highland ridged plains in Arabia Terra. Outgassed sulphur and erupted fine-grained pyroclastics from these calderas probably fed the formation of altered, layered sedimentary rocks and fretted terrain found throughout the equatorial region. The discovery of a new type of volcanic construct in the Arabia volcanic province fundamentally changes the picture of ancient volcanism and climate evolution on Mars. Other eroded topographic basins in the ancient Martian highlands that have been dismissed as degraded impact craters should be reconsidered as possible volcanic constructs formed in an early phase of widespread, disseminated magmatism on Mars.

  19. The breast: from Ancient Greek myths to Hippocrates and Galen. (United States)

    Iavazzo, C R; Trompoukis, C; Siempos, I I; Falagas, M E


    This is a historical article about Ancient Greek literature from mythological times until the first centuries AD with regard to the female breast. We endeavoured to collect several elegant narratives on the topic as well as to explore the knowledge of Ancient Greek doctors on the role, physiology and pathology of breast and the treatment of its diseases. We identified such descriptions in myths regarding Amazons, Hercules, Zeus, Hera and Amaltheia. Furthermore, descriptions on the topic were also found in the work of Hippocrates, Aristoteles, Soranos, Alexander of Aphrodisias, Celsus, Archigenis, Leonides, Galen and Oribasius. We may conclude that some of today's medical knowledge or practice regarding the breast was also known in the historical period.

  20. Historical overview of spinal deformities in ancient Greece

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaspiris Angelos


    Full Text Available Abstract Little is known about the history of spinal deformities in ancient Greece. The present study summarizes what we know today for diagnosis and management of spinal deformities in ancient Greece, mainly from the medical treatises of Hippocrates and Galen. Hippocrates, through accurate observation and logical reasoning was led to accurate conclusions firstly for the structure of the spine and secondly for its diseases. He introduced the terms kyphosis and scoliosis and wrote in depth about diagnosis and treatment of kyphosis and less about scoliosis. The innovation of the board, the application of axial traction and even the principle of trans-abdominal correction for correction of spinal deformities have their origin in Hippocrates. Galen, who lived nearly five centuries later impressively described scoliosis, lordosis and kyphosis, provided aetiologic implications and used the same principles with Hippocrates for their management, while his studies influenced medical practice on spinal deformities for more than 1500 years.

  1. Genome-wide patterns of selection in 230 ancient Eurasians (United States)

    Mathieson, Iain; Lazaridis, Iosif; Rohland, Nadin; Mallick, Swapan; Patterson, Nick; Roodenberg, Songül Alpaslan; Harney, Eadaoin; Stewardson, Kristin; Fernandes, Daniel; Novak, Mario; Sirak, Kendra; Gamba, Cristina; Jones, Eppie R.; Llamas, Bastien; Dryomov, Stanislav; Pickrel, Joseph; Arsuaga, Juan Luís; de Castro, José María Bermúdez; Carbonell, Eudald; Gerritsen, Fokke; Khokhlov, Aleksandr; Kuznetsov, Pavel; Lozano, Marina; Meller, Harald; Mochalov, Oleg; Moiseyev, Vayacheslav; Rojo Guerra, Manuel A.; Roodenberg, Jacob; Vergès, Josep Maria; Krause, Johannes; Cooper, Alan; Alt, Kurt W.; Brown, Dorcas; Anthony, David; Lalueza-Fox, Carles; Haak, Wolfgang; Pinhasi, Ron; Reich, David


    Ancient DNA makes it possible to directly witness natural selection by analyzing samples from populations before, during and after adaptation events. Here we report the first scan for selection using ancient DNA, capitalizing on the largest genome-wide dataset yet assembled: 230 West Eurasians dating to between 6500 and 1000 BCE, including 163 with newly reported data. The new samples include the first genome-wide data from the Anatolian Neolithic culture whose genetic material we extracted from the DNA-rich petrous bone and who we show were members of the population that was the source of Europe’s first farmers. We also report a complete transect of the steppe region in Samara between 5500 and 1200 BCE that allows us to recognize admixture from at least two external sources into steppe populations during this period. We detect selection at loci associated with diet, pigmentation and immunity, and two independent episodes of selection on height. PMID:26595274

  2. LUCApedia: a database for the study of ancient life. (United States)

    Goldman, Aaron David; Bernhard, Tess M; Dolzhenko, Egor; Landweber, Laura F


    Organisms represented by the root of the universal evolutionary tree were most likely complex cells with a sophisticated protein translation system and a DNA genome encoding hundreds of genes. The growth of bioinformatics data from taxonomically diverse organisms has made it possible to infer the likely properties of early life in greater detail. Here we present LUCApedia, (, a unified framework for simultaneously evaluating multiple data sets related to the Last Universal Common Ancestor (LUCA) and its predecessors. This unification is achieved by mapping eleven such data sets onto UniProt, KEGG and BioCyc IDs. LUCApedia may be used to rapidly acquire evidence that a certain gene or set of genes is ancient, to examine the early evolution of metabolic pathways, or to test specific hypotheses related to ancient life by corroborating them against the rest of the database.

  3. Ancient DNA perspectives on American colonization and population history. (United States)

    Raff, Jennifer A; Bolnick, Deborah A; Tackney, Justin; O'Rourke, Dennis H


    Ancient DNA (aDNA) analyses have proven to be important tools in understanding human population dispersals, settlement patterns, interactions between prehistoric populations, and the development of regional population histories. Here, we review the published results of sixty-three human populations from throughout the Americas and compare the levels of diversity and geographic patterns of variation in the ancient samples with contemporary genetic variation in the Americas in order to investigate the evolution of the Native American gene pool over time. Our analysis of mitochondrial haplogroup frequencies and prehistoric population genetic diversity presents a complex evolutionary picture. Although the broad genetic structure of American prehistoric populations appears to have been established relatively early, we nevertheless identify examples of genetic discontinuity over time in select regions. We discuss the implications this finding may have for our interpretation of the genetic evidence for the initial colonization of the Americas and its subsequent population history.

  4. Ancient sea reptile found at Syncrude formally described

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    This article provided details of an ancient reptile that once swam in ancient seas near the present location of Alberta's oil sands region. The plesiosaur has now been named after a curator at the Royal Tyrrell Museum who was also a renowned paleontologist. The nearly complete remains of one of the oldest plesiosaur fossils were recovered at a Syncrude Canada mine near Fort McMurray in 1994. Paleontologists from the University of Calgary have recently published a paper on the prehistoric aquatic predator in a German research journal. A plaster cast of the plesiosaur found at the Syncrude site is now on display at the Oil Sands Discovery Centre in Fort McMurray. 1 fig.

  5. Ideas of Physical Forces and Differential Calculus in Ancient India

    CERN Document Server

    Girish, T E


    We have studied the context and development of the ideas of physical forces and differential calculus in ancient India by studying relevant literature related to both astrology and astronomy since pre-Greek periods. The concept of Naisargika Bala (natural force) discussed in Hora texts from India is defined to be proportional to planetary size and inversely related to planetary distance. This idea developed several centuries prior to Isaac Newton resembles fundamental physical forces in nature especially gravity. We show that the studies on retrograde motion and Chesta Bala of planets like Mars in the context of astrology lead to development of differential calculus and planetary dynamics in ancient India. The idea of instantaneous velocity was first developed during the 1st millennium BC and Indians could solve first order differential equations as early as 6th cent AD. Indian contributions to astrophysics and calculus during European dark ages can be considered as a land mark in the pre-renaissance history ...

  6. Supervolcanoes Within an Ancient Volcanic Province in Arabia Terra, Mars (United States)

    Michalski, Joseph. R.; Bleacher, Jacob E.


    Several irregularly shaped craters located within Arabia Terra, Mars represent a new type of highland volcanic construct and together constitute a previously unrecognized martian igneous province. Similar to terrestrial supervolcanoes, these low-relief paterae display a range of geomorphic features related to structural collapse, effusive volcanism, and explosive eruptions. Extruded lavas contributed to the formation of enigmatic highland ridged plains in Arabia Terra. Outgassed sulfur and erupted fine-grained pyroclastics from these calderas likely fed the formation of altered, layered sedimentary rocks and fretted terrain found throughout the equatorial region. Discovery of a new type of volcanic construct in the Arabia volcanic province fundamentally changes the picture of ancient volcanism and climate evolution on Mars. Other eroded topographic basins in the ancient Martian highlands that have been dismissed as degraded impact craters should be reconsidered as possible volcanic constructs formed in an early phase of widespread, disseminated magmatism on Mars.

  7. The Protection of China's Ancient Cities from Flood Damage. (United States)

    Qingzhou, W


    Over many centuries, the repeated and serious flooding of many of China's ancient cities has led to the development of various measures to mitigate the impact of floods. These have included structural measures, such as the construction of walls, dams and dykes, with tree planting for soil consolidation; installation of drainage systems and water storage capacity; the raising of settlement levels and the strengthening of building materials. Non-structural measures include warning systems and planning for emergency evacuation. Urban planning and architectural design have evolved to reduce flood damage, and government officials have been appointed with specific responsibilities for managing the flood control systems. In view of the serious consequences of modern neglect of these well-tried methods, this paper examines China's historical experience of flooding and demonstrates its continuing relevance for today. A brief historical survey is followed by a detailed discussion of various flood prevention measures. The paper is illustrated by city plans from ancient local chronicles.

  8. [Female anthropology, physiology and disease in ancient Christian writers]. (United States)

    Prinzivalli, Emanuela


    Ancient Christian sources are rich in reference to the anthropology and physiology of the female. Christianity in the first centuries had multiple positions as concerns the doctrinal thoughts as well as the social practices. Christian anthropological doctrine has been developed along two exegetical lines, hinging on Genesis 1-3: the first views the human being as a whole psycophysical entity and thereby highlights the protological inferiority of the woman; the second, spiritual and Platonic, emphasizes the inner self and thus, in theory, is more equalitarian. Ancient philosophical theories regarding human generation, in particular those ofAristotle and the Stoics, are used, along with medical notions, by Christian theologians to elaborate the dogma of incarnation. However, in certain cases, as with the post partum virginity of Maria, medical theories are totally put aside. The stories recounting the miracles offer the possibility of understanding medical practices offemale conditions and the emotive reactions of the women.

  9. Acupuncture in ancient China: how important was it really? (United States)

    Lehmann, Hanjo


    Although acupuncture theory is a fundamental part of the Huangdi Neijing, the clinical application of the needle therapy in ancient China was always a limited one. From early times there have been warnings that acupuncture might do harm. In books like Zhang Zhongjing's Shanghanlun it plays only a marginal role. Among the 400 emperors in Chinese history, acupuncture was hardly ever applied. After Xu Dachun called acupuncture a "lost tradition" in 1757, the abolition of acupuncture and moxibustion from the Imperial Medical Academy in 1822 was a radical, but consequent act. When traditional Chinese medicine was revived after 1954, the "New Acupuncture" was completely different from what it had been in ancient China. The conclusion, however, is a positive one: The best time acupuncture ever had was not the Song dynasty or Yuan dynasty, but is now - and the future of acupuncture does not lie in old scripts, but in ourselves.

  10. Ancient administrative handwritten documents: X-ray analysis and imaging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Albertin, F., E-mail: [Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), CH-1015 Lausanne (Switzerland); Astolfo, A. [Paul Scherrer Institut (PSI), Villigen (Switzerland); Stampanoni, M. [Paul Scherrer Institut (PSI), Villigen (Switzerland); ETHZ, Zürich (Switzerland); Peccenini, Eva [University of Ferrara (Italy); Technopole of Ferrara (Italy); Hwu, Y. [Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan (China); Kaplan, F. [Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) (Switzerland); Margaritondo, G. [Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), CH-1015 Lausanne (Switzerland)


    The heavy-element content of ink in ancient administrative documents makes it possible to detect the characters with different synchrotron imaging techniques, based on attenuation or refraction. This is the first step in the direction of non-interactive virtual X-ray reading. Handwritten characters in administrative antique documents from three centuries have been detected using different synchrotron X-ray imaging techniques. Heavy elements in ancient inks, present even for everyday administrative manuscripts as shown by X-ray fluorescence spectra, produce attenuation contrast. In most cases the image quality is good enough for tomography reconstruction in view of future applications to virtual page-by-page ‘reading’. When attenuation is too low, differential phase contrast imaging can reveal the characters from refractive index effects. The results are potentially important for new information harvesting strategies, for example from the huge Archivio di Stato collection, objective of the Venice Time Machine project.

  11. Pathogenic microbial ancient DNA: a problem or an opportunity?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Willerslev, Eske; Cooper, Alan


    -controlled and rigorous studies that address technical issues and reliability criteria. This is unfortunate, as the rapid evolutionary rate of many pathogens offers a unique means to establish the authenticity of ancient pathogen sequences-since they should clearly be ancestral to modern genetic diversity (e.g. Reid et......) report that direct sequencing of ancient microbial DNA produced a sequence resembling (for example) Treponerma pallidum (the causative agent of venereal syphilis) even in the absence of real T. pallidum, simply due to the presence of diverse bacterial DNA in the experiment. In addition, the limited...... knowledge of current microbial diversity (only 1-5% of extant microbial diversity is believed to be known) makes it very difficult to use short aDNA sequences to establish unequivocally the presence of a given pathogen, as even supposed ‘obligate' species of humans or plants may possess currently undetected...

  12. Ancient Leishmaniasis in a Highland Desert of Northern Chile


    Maria Antonietta Costa; Carney Matheson; Lucia Iachetta; Agustín Llagostera; Otto Appenzeller


    BACKGROUND: Leishmaniasis is an infectious disease endemic today in many areas of South America. METHODOLOGY: We discovered morphologic and molecular evidence of ancient infections in 4 female skulls in the archaeological cemetery of Coyo Oriente, in the desert of San Pedro de Atacama, Northern Chile. The boney facial lesions visible in the skulls could have been caused by a number of chronic infections including chronic Leishmaniasis. This diagnosis was confirmed using PCR-sequenced analyses...

  13. The Art of Life: An Ancient Idea and Its Survival

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tieleman, Teun


    Full Text Available Teun Tieleman (UCLA / Utrecht University surveys the history of the philosophical notion of the ‘art of life’, starting from its originator Socrates and his ancient successors down to its role among present-day philosophers. Apart from Socrates, special attention is given to the Stoics, Nietzsche and Foucault. The way in which the notion was (redefined and functioned throughout the history of philosophy reveals an exceptionally fruitful interplay between continuity and originality.

  14. Sun-Earth Day 2005: Ancient Observatories: Timeless Knowledge (United States)

    Thieman, J. R.; Cline, T.; Lewis, E.; Hawkins, I.; Odenwald, S.; Mayo, L.


    The NASA Sun-Earth Connection Education Forum (SECEF) annually promotes an event called Sun-Earth Day. For Sun-Earth Day 2005 SECEF has selected a theme called "Ancient Observatories: Timeless Knowledge. This year's Sun-Earth Day theme is your ticket to a fascinating journey through time as we explore centuries of sun watching by a great variety of cultures. From ancient solar motion tracking to modern solar activity monitoring the Sun has always occupied an important spot in mankind's quest to understand the Universe. Sun-Earth Day events usually are centered on the spring equinox around March 21, but this year there has already been a webcast from the San Francisco Exploratorium and the Native American ruins at Chaco Canyon, New Mexico on the day of winter solstice 2004. There will be another webcast on March 20 live from Chichen Itza, Mexico highlighting the solar alignment that makes a serpent appear on one of the ancient pyramids. The website has been developed to provide the necessary resources and opportunities for participation by scientists and educators in giving school or general public programs about Sun-Earth Day. The goal is to involve as much of the student population and the public in this event as possible and to help them understand the importance of the Sun for ancient and modern peoples. Through engaging activities available on the website, classrooms and museums can create their own event or participate in one of the opportunities we make available. Scientists, educators, amateur astronomers, and museums are invited to register on the website to receive a free packet of materials about Sun-Earth Day for use in making presentations or programs about the event. Past and future Sun-Earth Days will be discussed as well.

  15. Examining Ancient Inter-domain Horizontal Gene Transfer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisca C. Almeida


    Full Text Available Details of the genomic changes that occurred in the ancestors of Eukarya, Archaea and Bacteria are elusive. Ancient interdomain horizontal gene transfer (IDHGT amongst the ancestors of these three domains has been difficult to detect and analyze because of the extreme degree of divergence of genes in these three domains and because most evidence for such events are poorly supported. In addition, many researchers have suggested that the prevalence of IDHGT events early in the evolution of life would most likely obscure the patterns of divergence of major groups of organisms let alone allow the tracking of horizontal transfer at this level. In order to approach this problem, we mined the E. coli genome for genes with distinct paralogs. Using the 1,268 E. coli K-12 genes with 40% or higher similarity level to a paralog elsewhere in the E. coli genome we detected 95 genes found exclusively in Bacteria and Archaea and 86 genes found in Bacteria and Eukarya. These genes form the basis for our analysis of IDHGT. We also applied a newly developed statistical test (the node height test, to examine the robustness of these inferences and to corroborate the phylogenetically identifi ed cases of ancient IDHGT. Our results suggest that ancient inter domain HGT is restricted to special cases, mostly involving symbiosis in eukaryotes and specific adaptations in prokaryotes. Only three genes in the Bacteria + Eukarya class (Deoxyxylulose-5-phosphate synthase (DXPS, fructose 1,6-phosphate aldolase class II protein and glucosamine-6-phosphate deaminase and three genes–in the Bacteria + Archaea class (ABC-type FE3+ -siderophore transport system, ferrous iron transport protein B, and dipeptide transport protein showed evidence of ancient IDHGT. However, we conclude that robust estimates of IDHGT will be very difficult to obtain due to the methodological limitations and the extreme sequence saturation of the genes suspected of being involved in IDHGT.

  16. Unwrapping an Ancient Egyptian Mummy Using X-Rays (United States)

    Hughes, Stephen W.


    This article describes a project of unwrapping an ancient Egyptian mummy using x-ray computed tomography (CT). About 600 x-ray CT images were obtained through the mummified body of a female named Tjetmutjengebtiu (or Jeni for short), who was a singer in the great temple of Karnak in Egypt during the 22nd dynasty (c 945-715 BC). The x-ray CT images…

  17. [Dreams, their disorders and their therapeutic function in ancient Mesopotamia]. (United States)

    Pangas, Julio César


    In this article, the author analyzes the concept of dreams in ancient Mesopotamia, as well as the interpretation of their therapeutic function by this civilisation. Also discussed are sleep disorders, as described on cuneiform tablets, written on clay at least four thousand years ago. These tablets had a magic role but also functioned as medical texts, detailing therapies used in dealing with the problems of sleep.

  18. Modern and ancient micrometeorites: Experimental and numerical studies


    Briani, Giacomo


    Micrometeorites are sub-millimetric extraterrestrial samples, which dominate the flux of extraterrestrial matter entering the Earth atmosphere. Every micrometeorite is altered by the interaction with the atmosphere. However, they can be found embedded in larger meteorites, in which case they are called microxenoliths. Microxenoliths are ancient micrometeorites, and they allow the study of past epochs of the Solar System, not accessible by studying micrometeorites. New microxenoliths have been...

  19. Earthquake Archaeology: a case study from Ancient Cnidus (United States)

    Stewart, I. S.; Altunel, E.; Piccardi, L.


    Ancient earthquakes can leave their mark in the mythical practices and literary accounts of ancient peoples, the stratigraphy of their site histories, and the structural integrity of their constructions. The ancient Greek/Roman city of Cnidus in southwestern Turkey records all three. A spectacular exposed fault plane cliff bordering the northern edge of the city appears to have been an important revered site, bearing votive niches carved into the near-vertical slip plane and associated with a Sanctuary of Demeter that implies a connection to the underworld. Stratigraphic evidence for earthquake faulting can be found in the form of a destruction horizon of contorted soil, relics and human remains exposed in the original excavations of the Sanctuary of Demeter by Sir Charles Newton (1857-58) and in a destruction horizon of burnt soil and bone uncovered by the ongoing excavation of a colonnaded street. Structural damage to constructions is widespread across the site, with warped and offset walls in the Sanctuary of Demeter, collapsed buildings in several places, and a parallel arrangement of fallen columns in the colonnaded street. The most remarkable structural evidence for fault activity, however, is the rupture of the ancient city's famous Round Temple of Aphrodite, whose podium reveals a history of damage and which is unambiguously displaced across a bedrock fault. While these phenomena are equivocal when viewed in isolation, collectively they imply at least two damaging earthquakes at the site, one (possibly both) of which ruptured along the fault on which the city is found. The Cnidus case study highlights how reliable identification of archaeoseismic damage relies on compiling an assemblage of indicators rather than the discovery of a diagnostic "smoking gun".

  20. Is Overseas Relocation The Way to Salvage China's Ancient Houses?

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    A 200-year-old greater ancient teahouse called Cuipingju in Shitai County, Anhui Province, was scheduled to be sold to a Swedish businessman for 200,000 yuan, as the owner was financially overburdened for the routine maintenance of the property. But after intensive media coverage of the deal in early July, the local government immediately identified Cuipingju as a cultural relic and the sale was canceled.

  1. The mineralogical and fabric analysis of ancient pottery artifacts


    R. Palanivel; Rajesh Kumar,U.


    The present investigation is carried out to estimate the firing temperature and conditions of firing of ancient pottery shreds excavated recently from Sembiankandiyur, Tamil Nadu, India. FTIR and XRD studies have been attempted on these shreds to characterize the mineral composition of the pottery artifacts in respect of their different physical attributes. The firing temperature and conditions were inferred from the mineral phases of the samples exhibited by the infrared spectra and X-ray di...

  2. Health care practices in ancient Greece: The Hippocratic ideal


    Kleisiaris, Christos F.; Sfakianakis, Chrisanthos; Papathanasiou, Ioanna V.


    Asclepius and Hippocrates focused medical practice on the natural approach and treatment of diseases, highlighting the importance of understanding the patient’s health, independence of mind, and the need for harmony between the individual, social and natural environment, as reflected in the Hippocratic Oath. The aim of this study was to present the philosophy of care provision in ancient Greece and to highlight the influence of the Hippocratic ideal in modern health care practices. A literatu...

  3. On the Formation of the Early Territorial Statein Ancient Egypt

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    This article aims at a reinterpretation of the formation of the earlyterritorial state in ancient Egypt from a multi-perspective. In the light ofthe recent studies on the available written material and new excavations,the author seeks to prove that the emergence of the early territorial statewas the result of the interaction of various elements. In the author'sopinion, the strong political ambition of the Upper Egyptian ruling elitesplayed a decisive role in the process of unification.

  4. Influences of Ancient Egypt on architecture and ornament in Scotland


    Packer, John Aidan


    This work seeks to identify the forms and origins of Ancient Egyptian architecture and the complex historical progress which brought these to Scotland, identifying the affinities shared by both countries and their evolving role from their first arrival to the present day. The thesis follows Egypt’s first appearance in Scottish legend and its later influence, at the close of the 16th century, in the practices of organised Freemasonry, to be followed, from the second quarter of t...

  5. Ancient Human Genome Sequence of an Extinct Palaeo-Eskimo

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Morten; Li, Yingrui; Lindgreen, Stinus;


    We report here the genome sequence of an ancient human. Obtained from approximately 4,000-year-old permafrost-preserved hair, the genome represents a male individual from the first known culture to settle in Greenland. Sequenced to an average depth of 20x, we recover 79% of the diploid genome, an...... for a migration from Siberia into the New World some 5,500 years ago, independent of that giving rise to the modern Native Americans and Inuit....

  6. Consciousness, Free Will, and Transformation. Science and Ancient Samkhya

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pratibha Gramann


    Full Text Available The existence of free will has been discovered by neurological studies. However there is a lack of research in what initiates the firing of free will within the nerve endings. This paper addresses that issue using ancient knowledge about consciousness, three energies that characterize matter, prana, and transformation. The premise made is that regular pranayam breath practices are a key-method to initiate the firing of nerve synapse in the brain to develop free will and transformation

  7. Pliny the Elder and his History of Ancient Art

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Graziella Melina


    Although Pliny the Elder based his history of ancient art on all the authors mentioned above, the writings of classical philologists and archeologists often imply that he might not have always used the art history literature mentioned as primary sources, but rather cited a great deal of information from the works of his predecessor, the famous Roman encyclopedist Marcus Terentius Varro (beginning of the 1st century BC.

  8. Childbirth in ancient Rome: from traditional folklore to obstetrics. (United States)

    Todman, Donald


    In ancient Rome, childbirth was a hazardous event for both mother and child with high rates of infant and maternal mortality. Traditional Roman medicine centred on folklore and religious practices, but with the development of Hippocratic medicine came significant advances in the care of women during pregnancy and confinement. Midwives or obstetrices played an important role and applied rational scientific practices to improve outcomes. This evolution from folklore to obstetrics was a pivotal point in the history of childbirth.

  9. Ancient-modern concordance in Ayurvedic plants: some examples.


    Dev, S.


    Ayurveda is the ancient (before 2500 b.c.) Indian system of health care and longevity. It involves a holistic view of man, his health, and illness. Ayurvedic treatment of a disease consists of salubrious use of drugs, diets, and certain practices. Medicinal preparations are invariably complex mixtures, based mostly on plant products. Around 1,250 plants are currently used in various Ayurvedic preparations. Many Indian medicinal plants have come under scientific scrutiny since the middle of th...

  10. Immunotherapies for Targeting Ancient Retrovirus during Breast Cancer (United States)


    nature of virus activity in the cancer cell and its involvement in cancer prognosis. Melanoma forms 80% of all skin cancer and about 10% of all... CDK4 pathways in melanoma cells. Cancer investigation 28, 1031-1037 (2010). 7.Hahn, S., et al. Serological response to human endogenous retrovirus K...Award Number: W81XWH-11-1-0002 TITLE: Immunotherapies for Targeting Ancient Retrovirus during Breast Cancer

  11. Dental indicators of ancient dietary patterns: dental analysis in archaeology. (United States)

    Forshaw, R


    What can the study of ancient teeth tell us about the dietary habits of our ancestors? Diet plays a prominent role in the organisation and evolution of human cultures and an increasingly diverse array of analytical techniques are available to help reconstruct diet in ancient populations. Dental palaeopathology is particularly important as it can provide direct evidence of the type of diet an individual consumed during life. Heavy occlusal tooth wear is the most frequent condition recognisable and an examination of both macro and microscopic patterns of wear can establish the differences between the hard fibrous diet typical of a hunter-gatherer, and a diet primarily consisting of softer plant foods consumed by an agriculturist. The distributions of trace elements and stable isotopes in food webs make it possible to use them as natural tracers of foodstuffs. Through a consideration of photosynthetic pathways, the ratios of the different stable isotopes of carbon and nitrogen can determine which specific groups of plants and animals were dominant in the food chains of various populations - a fact that has been used to trace the spread of agriculture in ancient civilisations.

  12. Preservation of ancient DNA in thermally damaged archaeological bone (United States)

    Ottoni, Claudio; Koon, Hannah E. C.; Collins, Matthew J.; Penkman, Kirsty E. H.; Rickards, Olga; Craig, Oliver E.


    Evolutionary biologists are increasingly relying on ancient DNA from archaeological animal bones to study processes such as domestication and population dispersals. As many animal bones found on archaeological sites are likely to have been cooked, the potential for DNA preservation must be carefully considered to maximise the chance of amplification success. Here, we assess the preservation of mitochondrial DNA in a medieval cattle bone assemblage from Coppergate, York, UK. These bones have variable degrees of thermal alterations to bone collagen fibrils, indicative of cooking. Our results show that DNA preservation is not reliant on the presence of intact collagen fibrils. In fact, a greater number of template molecules could be extracted from bones with damaged collagen. We conclude that moderate heating of bone may enhance the retention of DNA fragments. Our results also indicate that ancient DNA preservation is highly variable, even within a relatively recent assemblage from contexts conducive to organic preservation, and that diagenetic parameters based on protein diagenesis are not always useful for predicting ancient DNA survival.

  13. Contributions of ancient Indian physicians - Implications for modern times

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J Singh


    Full Text Available Ayurveda traces its origins to contributions of mythological and real physicians that lived millennia earlier. In many respects, Western medicine also had similar origins and beliefs, however, the introduction of anatomical dissection and progressive application of scientific evidence based practices have resulted in divergent paths taken by these systems. We examined the lives, careers, and contributions made by nine ancient Indian physicians. Ancient texts, translations of these texts, books, and biographical works were consulted to obtain relevant information, both for Indian traditional medicine as well as for Western medicine. Ayurveda has retained principles enunciated by these physicians, with minor conceptual advances over the centuries. Western medicine separated from ancient Indian medicine several hundred years ago, and remains the foundation of modern medicine. Modern medicine is evidence based, and randomized clinical trials (RCTs are the gold standard by which efficacy of treatment is evaluated. Ayurvedic medicine has not undergone such critical evaluation to any large extent. The few RCTs that have evaluated alternative medical treatment recently have shown that such therapy is no better than placebo; however, placebo treatment is 30% effective. We suggest that foreign domination, initially by Mughals, and later by the British, may have contributed, in part, to this inertia and protracted status quo.

  14. Ancient Chinese medicine and mechanistic evidence of acupuncture physiology. (United States)

    Yang, Edward S; Li, Pei-Wen; Nilius, Bernd; Li, Geng


    Acupuncture has been widely used in China for three millennia as an art of healing. Yet, its physiology is not yet understood. The current interest in acupuncture started in 1971. Soon afterward, extensive research led to the concept of neural signaling with possible involvement of opioid peptides, glutamate, adenosine and identifying responsive parts in the central nervous system. In the last decade scientists began investigating the subject with anatomical and molecular imaging. It was found that mechanical movements of the needle, ignored in the past, appear to be central to the method and intracellular calcium ions may play a pivotal role. In this review, we trace the technique of clinical treatment from the first written record about 2,200 years ago to the modern time. The ancient texts have been used to introduce the concepts of yin, yang, qi, de qi, and meridians, the traditional foundation of acupuncture. We explore the sequence of the physiological process, from the turning of the needle, the mechanical wave activation of calcium ion channel to beta-endorphin secretion. By using modern terminology to re-interpret the ancient texts, we have found that the 2nd century B.C.: physiologists were meticulous investigators and their explanation fits well with the mechanistic model derived from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and confocal microscopy. In conclusion, the ancient model appears to have withstood the test of time surprisingly well confirming the popular axiom that the old wine is better than the new.

  15. Highly informative ancient DNA 'snippets' for New Zealand moa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan McCallum

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Analysis of ancient DNA has provided invaluable information on past ecologies, ancient populations, and extinct species. We used a short snippet of highly variable mitochondrial control region sequence from New Zealand's moa to characterise a large number of bones previously intractable to DNA analysis as well as bone fragments from swamps to gain information about the haplotype diversity and phylogeography that existed in five moa species. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: By targeting such 'snippets', we show that moa populations differed substantially in geographic structure that is likely to be related to population mobility and history. We show that populations of Pachyornis geranoides, Dinornis novaezealandiae, and Dinornis robustus were highly structured and some appear to have occupied the same geographic location for hundreds of thousands of years. In contrast, populations of the moa Anomalopteryx didiformis and Euryapteryx curtus were widespread, with specific populations of the latter occupying both the North and South Islands of New Zealand. We further show that for a specific area, in this case a North Island swamp, complete haplotype diversity and even sex can be recovered from collections of small, often discarded, bone fragments. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Short highly variable mitochondrial 'snippets' allow successful typing of environmentally damaged and fragmented skeletal material, and can provide useful information about ancient population diversity and structure without the need to sample valuable, whole bones often held by museums.

  16. Wave characterization for mammalian cell culture: residence time distribution. (United States)

    Rodrigues, Maria Elisa; Costa, Ana Rita; Henriques, Mariana; Azeredo, Joana; Oliveira, Rosário


    The high dose requirements of biopharmaceutical products led to the development of mammalian cell culture technologies that increase biomanufacturing capacity. The disposable Wave bioreactor is one of the most promising technologies, providing ease of operation and no cross-contamination, and using an innovative undulation movement that ensures good mixing and oxygen transfer without cell damage. However, its recentness demands further characterization. This study evaluated the residence time distribution (RTD) in Wave, allowing the characterization of mixing and flow and the comparison with ideal models and a Stirred tank reactor (STR) used for mammalian cell culture. RTD was determined using methylene blue with pulse input methodology, at three flow rates common in mammalian cell culture (3.3×10(-5)m(3)/h, 7.9×10(-5)m(3)/h, and 1.25×10(-4)m(3)/h) and one typical of microbial culture (5×10(-3)m(3)/h). Samples were taken periodically and the absorbance read at 660nm. It was observed that Wave behavior diverted from ideal models, but was similar to STR. Therefore, the deviations are not related to the particular Wave rocking mechanism, but could be associated with the inadequacy of these reactors to operate in continuous mode or to a possible inability of the theoretical models to properly describe the behavior of reactors designed for mammalian cell culture. Thus, the development of new theoretical models could better characterize the performance of these reactors.

  17. Mammalian target of rapamycin inhibitor-associated stomatitis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boers-Doets, C.B.; Raber-Durlacher, J.E.; Treister, N.S.; Epstein, J.B.; Arends, A.B.P.; Wiersma, D.R.; Lalla, R.V.; Logan, R.M.; van Erp, N.R.P.; Gelderblom, H.


    With the recent introduction of inhibitors of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) in oncology, distinct cutaneous and oral adverse events have been identified. In fact, stomatitis and rash are documented as the most frequent and potentially dose-limiting side effects. Clinically, mTOR inhibitor-ass

  18. Fate and Metabolism of PBDEs in Mammalian Systems (United States)

    Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) belong to an emerging class of persistent organic pollutants (POPs). Although the toxicology of PBDEs is not well developed, they are persistent and bioaccumulative, and therefore, of growing environmental concern. The metabolism of PBDEs in mammalian systems h...

  19. Lung development of monotremes: evidence for the mammalian morphotype. (United States)

    Ferner, Kirsten; Zeller, Ulrich; Renfree, Marilyn B


    The reproductive strategies and the extent of development of neonates differ markedly between the three extant mammalian groups: the Monotremata, Marsupialia, and Eutheria. Monotremes and marsupials produce highly altricial offspring whereas the neonates of eutherian mammals range from altricial to precocial. The ability of the newborn mammal to leave the environment in which it developed depends highly on the degree of maturation of the cardio-respiratory system at the time of birth. The lung structure is thus a reflection of the metabolic capacity of neonates. The lung development in monotremes (Ornithorhynchus anatinus, Tachyglossus aculeatus), in one marsupial (Monodelphis domestica), and one altricial eutherian (Suncus murinus) species was examined. The results and additional data from the literature were integrated into a morphotype reconstruction of the lung structure of the mammalian neonate. The lung parenchyma of monotremes and marsupials was at the early terminal air sac stage at birth, with large terminal air sacs. The lung developed slowly. In contrast, altricial eutherian neonates had more advanced lungs at the late terminal air sac stage and postnatally, lung maturation proceeded rapidly. The mammalian lung is highly conserved in many respects between monotreme, marsupial, and eutherian species and the structural differences in the neonatal lungs can be explained mainly by different developmental rates. The lung structure of newborn marsupials and monotremes thus resembles the ancestral condition of the mammalian lung at birth, whereas the eutherian newborns have a more mature lung structure.

  20. Supercomplexes in the respiratory chains of yeast and mammalian mitochondria. (United States)

    Schägger, H; Pfeiffer, K


    Around 30-40 years after the first isolation of the five complexes of oxidative phosphorylation from mammalian mitochondria, we present data that fundamentally change the paradigm of how the yeast and mammalian system of oxidative phosphorylation is organized. The complexes are not randomly distributed within the inner mitochondrial membrane, but assemble into supramolecular structures. We show that all cytochrome c oxidase (complex IV) of Saccharomyces cerevisiae is bound to cytochrome c reductase (complex III), which exists in three forms: the free dimer, and two supercomplexes comprising an additional one or two complex IV monomers. The distribution between these forms varies with growth conditions. In mammalian mitochondria, almost all complex I is assembled into supercomplexes comprising complexes I and III and up to four copies of complex IV, which guided us to present a model for a network of respiratory chain complexes: a 'respirasome'. A fraction of total bovine ATP synthase (complex V) was isolated in dimeric form, suggesting that a dimeric state is not limited to S.cerevisiae, but also exists in mammalian mitochondria.

  1. Germ cells and the origins of mammalian pluripotent cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kuijk, E.W.


    Mammalian embryonic stem (ES) cells originate from preimplantation embryos and can be propagated indefinitely without loss of pluripotency; i.e. the potential to develop into any embryonic cell type. ES cells have been described for mouse, rhesus monkey, and human. There is considerable interest in

  2. Complementation of mutant phenotypes and genotypes of cultured mammalian cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    A.J.R. de Jonge


    textabstractThis dissertation describes experiments aimed at the complementation of a genetic mutation in cultured mammalian cells in order to investigate several aspects of the structure and functioning of the human genome. Complementation is indicated by the correction of a biochemical function in

  3. The different shades of mammalian pluripotent stem cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kuijk, E.W.; Lopes, S.M.; Geijsen, N.; Macklon, N.S.; Roelen, B.A.J.


    The different shades of mammalian pluripotent stem cells Abstract BACKGROUND Pluripotent stem cells have been derived from a variety of sources such as from the inner cell mass of preimplantation embryos, from primordial germ cells, from teratocarcinomas and from male germ cells. The recent developm

  4. Incorporation of nanoparticles within mammalian spermatozoa using in vitro capacitation (United States)

    There is still much unknown about the journey of spermatozoa within the female genital tract. Recent studies have investigated mammalian spermatozoa labeling with fluorescent quantum dot nanoparticles (QD) for non-invasive imaging. Furthermore, the incorporation of these QD within the spermatozoa ma...

  5. 40 CFR 799.9539 - TSCA mammalian erythrocyte micronucleus test. (United States)


    ... 40 Protection of Environment 31 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 true TSCA mammalian erythrocyte micronucleus test. 799.9539 Section 799.9539 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY (CONTINUED... strains of young healthy animals should be employed. At the commencement of the study, the...

  6. Improving the Awareness of the Influence of Geography Upon Historical Events in Ancient Mesopotamia and in Ancient Egypt in Ninth Grade World History Students. (United States)

    Milton, Henry

    This practicum was designed to incorporate the study of geography into a ninth grade world history class with the aim of improving student awareness of the influence of geography upon the historical development of ancient Mesopotamia and ancient Egypt. By means of a questionnaire and map tests it was determined that ninth grade world history…

  7. How difficult is inference of mammalian causal gene regulatory networks? (United States)

    Djordjevic, Djordje; Yang, Andrian; Zadoorian, Armella; Rungrugeecharoen, Kevin; Ho, Joshua W K


    Gene regulatory networks (GRNs) play a central role in systems biology, especially in the study of mammalian organ development. One key question remains largely unanswered: Is it possible to infer mammalian causal GRNs using observable gene co-expression patterns alone? We assembled two mouse GRN datasets (embryonic tooth and heart) and matching microarray gene expression profiles to systematically investigate the difficulties of mammalian causal GRN inference. The GRNs were assembled based on > 2,000 pieces of experimental genetic perturbation evidence from manually reading > 150 primary research articles. Each piece of perturbation evidence records the qualitative change of the expression of one gene following knock-down or over-expression of another gene. Our data have thorough annotation of tissue types and embryonic stages, as well as the type of regulation (activation, inhibition and no effect), which uniquely allows us to estimate both sensitivity and specificity of the inference of tissue specific causal GRN edges. Using these unprecedented datasets, we found that gene co-expression does not reliably distinguish true positive from false positive interactions, making inference of GRN in mammalian development very difficult. Nonetheless, if we have expression profiling data from genetic or molecular perturbation experiments, such as gene knock-out or signalling stimulation, it is possible to use the set of differentially expressed genes to recover causal regulatory relationships with good sensitivity and specificity. Our result supports the importance of using perturbation experimental data in causal network reconstruction. Furthermore, we showed that causal gene regulatory relationship can be highly cell type or developmental stage specific, suggesting the importance of employing expression profiles from homogeneous cell populations. This study provides essential datasets and empirical evidence to guide the development of new GRN inference methods for

  8. Spatially explicit analyses of gastropod biodiversity in ancient Lake Ohrid

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    T. Hauffe


    Full Text Available Spatial heterogeneity of biodiversity arises from evolutionary processes, constraints of environmental factors and the interaction of communities. The quality of such spatial analyses of biodiversity is improved by (i utilizing study areas with well defined physiogeographical boundaries, (ii limiting the impact of widespread species, and (iii using taxa with heterogeneous distributions. These conditions are typically met by ecosystems such as oceanic islands or ancient lakes and their biota. While research on ancient lakes has contributed significantly to our understanding of evolutionary processes, statistically sound studies of spatial variation of extant biodiversity have been hampered by the frequently vast size of ancient lakes, their limited accessibility, and the lack of infrastructure around them. The small European ancient Lake Ohrid provides a rare opportunity for such a reliable spatial study. The comprehensive horizontal and vertical sampling of a species-rich taxon, the Gastropoda, presented here, revealed interesting patterns of biodiversity, which, in part, have not been shown before for other ancient lakes.

    In a total of 224 locations throughout the Ohrid Basin, representatives of 68 gastropod species with 50 of them being endemic (=73.5% could be reported. The spatial distribution of these species shows the following characteristics:

    (i within Lake Ohrid, the most frequent species are endemic taxa with a wide depth range, (ii widespread species (i.e. those occurring throughout the Balkans or beyond are rare and mainly occur in the upper layer of the lake, (iii while the total number of species decreases with water depth, the share of endemics increases, (iv the deeper layers of Lake Ohrid appear to have a higher spatial homogeneity of biodiversity and related environmental factors, (v biotic interaction due to possible spillover effects may contribute to the establishment of hotspots, and (vi eco

  9. Photoferrotrophy: Remains of an Ancient Photosynthesis in Modern Environments. (United States)

    Camacho, Antonio; Walter, Xavier A; Picazo, Antonio; Zopfi, Jakob


    Photoferrotrophy, the process by which inorganic carbon is fixed into organic matter using light as an energy source and reduced iron [Fe(II)] as an electron donor, has been proposed as one of the oldest photoautotrophic metabolisms on Earth. Under the iron-rich (ferruginous) but sulfide poor conditions dominating the Archean ocean, this type of metabolism could have accounted for most of the primary production in the photic zone. Here we review the current knowledge of biogeochemical, microbial and phylogenetic aspects of photoferrotrophy, and evaluate the ecological significance of this process in ancient and modern environments. From the ferruginous conditions that prevailed during most of the Archean, the ancient ocean evolved toward euxinic (anoxic and sulfide rich) conditions and, finally, much after the advent of oxygenic photosynthesis, to a predominantly oxic environment. Under these new conditions photoferrotrophs lost importance as primary producers, and now photoferrotrophy remains as a vestige of a formerly relevant photosynthetic process. Apart from the geological record and other biogeochemical markers, modern environments resembling the redox conditions of these ancient oceans can offer insights into the past significance of photoferrotrophy and help to explain how this metabolism operated as an important source of organic carbon for the early biosphere. Iron-rich meromictic (permanently stratified) lakes can be considered as modern analogs of the ancient Archean ocean, as they present anoxic ferruginous water columns where light can still be available at the chemocline, thus offering suitable niches for photoferrotrophs. A few bacterial strains of purple bacteria as well as of green sulfur bacteria have been shown to possess photoferrotrophic capacities, and hence, could thrive in these modern Archean ocean analogs. Studies addressing the occurrence and the biogeochemical significance of photoferrotrophy in ferruginous environments have been

  10. Spatially explicit analysis of gastropod biodiversity in ancient Lake Ohrid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Hauffe


    Full Text Available The quality of spatial analyses of biodiversity is improved by (i utilizing study areas with well defined physiogeographical boundaries, (ii limiting the impact of widespread species, and (iii using taxa with heterogeneous distributions. These conditions are typically met by ecosystems such as oceanic islands or ancient lakes and their biota. While research on ancient lakes has contributed significantly to our understanding of evolutionary processes, statistically sound studies of spatial variation of extant biodiversity have been hampered by the frequently vast size of ancient lakes, their limited accessibility, and the lack of scientific infrastructure. The European ancient Lake Ohrid provides a rare opportunity for such a reliable spatial study. The comprehensive horizontal and vertical sampling of a species-rich taxon, the Gastropoda, presented here, revealed interesting patterns of biodiversity, which, in part, have not been shown before for other ancient lakes.

    In a total of 284 samples from 224 different locations throughout the Ohrid Basin, 68 gastropod species, with 50 of them (= 73.5% being endemic, could be reported. The spatial distribution of these species shows the following characteristics: (i within Lake Ohrid, the most frequent species are endemic taxa with a wide depth range, (ii widespread species (i.e. those occurring throughout the Balkans or beyond are rare and mainly occur in the upper layer of the lake, (iii while the total number of species decreases with water depth, the proportion of endemics increases, and (iv the deeper layers of Lake Ohrid appear to have a higher spatial homogeneity of biodiversity. Moreover, gastropod communities of Lake Ohrid and its feeder springs are both distinct from each other and from the surrounding waters. The analysis also shows that community similarity of Lake Ohrid is mainly driven by niche processes (e.g. environmental factors, but also by neutral processes (e.g. dispersal

  11. Mammalian development does not recapitulate suspected key transformations in the evolutionary detachment of the mammalian middle ear. (United States)

    Ramírez-Chaves, Héctor E; Wroe, Stephen W; Selwood, Lynne; Hinds, Lyn A; Leigh, Chris; Koyabu, Daisuke; Kardjilov, Nikolay; Weisbecker, Vera


    The ectotympanic, malleus and incus of the developing mammalian middle ear (ME) are initially attached to the dentary via Meckel's cartilage, betraying their origins from the primary jaw joint of land vertebrates. This recapitulation has prompted mostly unquantified suggestions that several suspected--but similarly unquantified--key evolutionary transformations leading to the mammalian ME are recapitulated in development, through negative allometry and posterior/medial displacement of ME bones relative to the jaw joint. Here we show, using µCT reconstructions, that neither allometric nor topological change is quantifiable in the pre-detachment ME development of six marsupials and two monotremes. Also, differential ME positioning in the two monotreme species is not recapitulated. This challenges the developmental prerequisites of widely cited evolutionary scenarios of definitive mammalian middle ear (DMME) evolution, highlighting the requirement for further fossil evidence to test these hypotheses. Possible association between rear molar eruption, full ME ossification and ME detachment in marsupials suggests functional divergence between dentary and ME as a trigger for developmental, and possibly also evolutionary, ME detachment. The stable positioning of the dentary and ME supports suggestions that a 'partial mammalian middle ear' as found in many mammaliaforms--probably with a cartilaginous Meckel's cartilage--represents the only developmentally plausible evolutionary DMME precursor.

  12. Mammalian target of rapamycin activity is required for expansion of CD34(+) hematopoietic progenitor cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geest, Christian R.; Zwartkruis, Fried J.; Vellenga, Edo; Coffer, Paul J.; Buitenhuis, Miranda


    Background The mammalian target of rapamycin is a conserved protein kinase known to regulate protein synthesis, cell size and proliferation. Aberrant regulation of mammalian target of rapamycin activity has been observed in hematopoietic malignancies, including acute leukemias and myelodysplastic sy

  13. Mammalian target of rapamycin activity is required for expansion of CD34+ hematopoietic progenitor cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geest, C.R.; Zwartkruis, G.J.T.; Vellenga, E.; Coffer, P.J.; Buitenhuis, M.


    Background The mammalian target of rapamycin is a conserved protein kinase known to regulate protein synthesis, cell size and proliferation. Aberrant regulation of mammalian target of rapamycin activity has been observed in hematopoietic malignancies, including acute leukemias and myelodysplastic sy

  14. Medicine and psychiatry in Western culture: Ancient Greek myths and modern prejudices

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    Clementi Nicoletta


    Full Text Available Abstract The origins of Western culture extensively relate to Ancient Greek culture. While many ancient cultures have contributed to our current knowledge about medicine and the origins of psychiatry, the Ancient Greeks were among the best observers of feelings and moods patients expressed towards medicine and toward what today is referred to as 'psychopathology'. Myths and religious references were used to explain what was otherwise impossible to understand or be easily communicated. Most ancient myths focus on ambiguous feelings patients may have had towards drugs, especially psychotropic ones. Interestingly, such prejudices are common even today. Recalling ancient findings and descriptions made using myths could represent a valuable knowledge base for modern physicians, especially for psychiatrists and their patients, with the aim of better understanding each other and therefore achieving a better clinical outcome. This paper explores many human aspects and feelings towards doctors and their cures, referring to ancient myths and focusing on the perception of mental illness.

  15. Ancient wheat and health: a legend or the reality? A review on KAMUT khorasan wheat. (United States)

    Bordoni, Alessandra; Danesi, Francesca; Di Nunzio, Mattia; Taccari, Annalisa; Valli, Veronica


    After WWII, the industrialized agriculture selected modern varieties of Triticum turgidum spp. durum and spp. aestivum (durum wheat and common wheat) based on higher yields and technological characteristics. Nowadays, the use of whole ancient grains and pseudo cereals is considered nutritionally important. How ancient grains have positive effects is not entirely known, the fragmentation of the scientific knowledge being also related to the fact that ancient grains are not a homogeneous category. The KAMUT(®) trademark indicates a specific and ancient variety of grain (Triticum turgidum ssp. turanicum, commonly khorasan wheat), and guarantees certain attributes making studies sufficiently comparable. In this work, studies on KAMUT(®) khorasan wheat have been systematically reviewed, evidencing different aspects supporting its benefits. Although it is not possible to establish whether all ancient grains share these positive characteristics, in total or in part, this review provides further evidences supporting the consumption of ancient grains.

  16. Sequencing of Pax6 loci from the elephant shark reveals a family of Pax6 genes in vertebrate genomes, forged by ancient duplications and divergences.

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    Vydianathan Ravi

    Full Text Available Pax6 is a developmental control gene essential for eye development throughout the animal kingdom. In addition, Pax6 plays key roles in other parts of the CNS, olfactory system, and pancreas. In mammals a single Pax6 gene encoding multiple isoforms delivers these pleiotropic functions. Here we provide evidence that the genomes of many other vertebrate species contain multiple Pax6 loci. We sequenced Pax6-containing BACs from the cartilaginous elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii and found two distinct Pax6 loci. Pax6.1 is highly similar to mammalian Pax6, while Pax6.2 encodes a paired-less Pax6. Using synteny relationships, we identify homologs of this novel paired-less Pax6.2 gene in lizard and in frog, as well as in zebrafish and in other teleosts. In zebrafish two full-length Pax6 duplicates were known previously, originating from the fish-specific genome duplication (FSGD and expressed in divergent patterns due to paralog-specific loss of cis-elements. We show that teleosts other than zebrafish also maintain duplicate full-length Pax6 loci, but differences in gene and regulatory domain structure suggest that these Pax6 paralogs originate from a more ancient duplication event and are hence renamed as Pax6.3. Sequence comparisons between mammalian and elephant shark Pax6.1 loci highlight the presence of short- and long-range conserved noncoding elements (CNEs. Functional analysis demonstrates the ancient role of long-range enhancers for Pax6 transcription. We show that the paired-less Pax6.2 ortholog in zebrafish is expressed specifically in the developing retina. Transgenic analysis of elephant shark and zebrafish Pax6.2 CNEs with homology to the mouse NRE/Pα internal promoter revealed highly specific retinal expression. Finally, morpholino depletion of zebrafish Pax6.2 resulted in a "small eye" phenotype, supporting a role in retinal development. In summary, our study reveals that the pleiotropic functions of Pax6 in vertebrates are served by

  17. The head and neck muscles of the serval and tiger: homologies, evolution, and proposal of a mammalian and a veterinary muscle ontology. (United States)

    Diogo, Rui; Pastor, Francisco; De Paz, Felix; Potau, Josep M; Bello-Hellegouarch, Gaëlle; Ferrero, Eva M; Fisher, Rebecca E


    Here we describe the head and neck muscles of members of the two extant felid subfamilies (Leptailurus serval: Felinae; Panthera tigris: Pantherinae) and compare these muscles with those of other felids, other carnivorans (e.g., domestic dogs), other eutherian mammals (e.g., rats, tree-shrews and modern humans), and noneutherian mammals including monotremes. Another major goal of the article is to discuss and help clarify nomenclatural discrepancies found in the Nomina Anatomica Veterinaria and in veterinary atlases and textbooks that use cats and dogs as models to understand the anatomy of domestic mammals and to stress differences with modern humans. We propose a unifying nomenclature that is expanded to all the head and neck muscles and to all mammalian taxa in order to help build veterinary and mammalian muscle ontologies. Our observations and comparisons and the specific use of this nomenclature point out that felids such as tigers and servals and other carnivorans such as dogs have more facial muscle structures related to the mobility of both the auricular and orbital regions than numerous other mammals, including modern humans, which might be the result of an ancient adaptation related to the remarkable predatory capacities of carnivorans. Interestingly, the skeletal differences, mainly concerning the hyoid apparatus, pharynx, and larynx, that are likely associated with the different types of vocalizations seen in the Felinae (mainly purring) and Pantherinae (mainly roaring) are not accompanied by clear differences in the musculature connected to these structures in the feline L. serval and the pantherine P. tigris.

  18. Live-cell imaging of mammalian RNAs with Spinach2 (United States)

    Strack, Rita L.; Jaffrey, Samie R.


    The ability to monitor RNAs of interest in living cells is crucial to understanding the function, dynamics, and regulation of this important class of molecules. In recent years, numerous strategies have been developed with the goal of imaging individual RNAs of interest in living cells, each with their own advantages and limitations. This chapter provides an overview of current methods of live-cell RNA imaging, including a detailed discussion of genetically encoded strategies for labeling RNAs in mammalian cells. This chapter then focuses on the development and use of “RNA mimics of GFP” or Spinach technology for tagging mammalian RNAs, and includes a detailed protocol for imaging 5S and CGG60 RNA with the recently described Spinach2 tag. PMID:25605384

  19. Growth of the Mammalian Golgi Apparatus during Interphase. (United States)

    Sin, Alex T-W; Harrison, Rene E


    During the cell cycle, genetic materials and organelles are duplicated to ensure that there is sufficient cellular content for daughter cells. While Golgi growth in interphase has been observed in lower eukaryotes, the elaborate ribbon structure of the mammalian Golgi apparatus has made it challenging to monitor. Here we demonstrate the growth of the mammalian Golgi apparatus in its protein content and volume during interphase. Through ultrastructural analyses, physical growth of the Golgi apparatus was revealed to occur by cisternal elongation of the individual Golgi stacks. By examining the timing and regulation of Golgi growth, we established that Golgi growth starts after passage through the cell growth checkpoint at late G1 phase and continues in a manner highly correlated with cell size growth. Finally, by identifying S6 kinase 1 as a major player in Golgi growth, we revealed the coordination between cell size and Golgi growth via activation of the protein synthesis machinery in early interphase.

  20. Experimental comparison of mammalian and avian blood flow in microchannels (United States)

    Fink, Kathryn; Liepmann, Dorian


    The non-Newtonian, shear rate dependent behavior of blood in microchannel fluid dynamics has been studied for nearly a century, with a significant focus on the characteristics of human blood. However, for over 200 years biologists have noted significant differences in red blood cell characteristics across vertebrate species, with particularly drastic differences in cell size and shape between mammals and non-mammalian classes. We present an experimental analysis of flow in long microchannels for several varieties of mammalian and avian blood, across a range of hematocrits, channel diameters, and flow rates. Correlation of shear rate and viscosity is compared to existing constitutive equations for human blood to further quantify the importance of red blood cell characteristics. Ongoing experimental results are made available in an online database for reference or collaboration. K.F. acknowledges funding from the ARCS Foundation and an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship through NSF Grant DGE 1106400.

  1. Number matters: control of mammalian mitochondrial DNA copy number. (United States)

    Clay Montier, Laura L; Deng, Janice J; Bai, Yidong


    Regulation of mitochondrial biogenesis is essential for proper cellular functioning. Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) depletion and the resulting mitochondrial malfunction have been implicated in cancer, neurodegeneration, diabetes, aging, and many other human diseases. Although it is known that the dynamics of the mammalian mitochondrial genome are not linked with that of the nuclear genome, very little is known about the mechanism of mtDNA propagation. Nevertheless, our understanding of the mode of mtDNA replication has advanced in recent years, though not without some controversies. This review summarizes our current knowledge of mtDNA copy number control in mammalian cells, while focusing on both mtDNA replication and turnover. Although mtDNA copy number is seemingly in excess, we reason that mtDNA copy number control is an important aspect of mitochondrial genetics and biogenesis and is essential for normal cellular function.

  2. Mammalian cycles: internally defined periods and interaction-driven amplitudes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LR Ginzburg


    Full Text Available The cause of mammalian cycles—the rise and fall of populations over a predictable period of time—has remained controversial since these patterns were first observed over a century ago. In spite of extensive work on observable mammalian cycles, the field has remained divided upon what the true cause is, with a majority of opinions attributing it to either predation or to intra-species mechanisms. Here we unite the eigenperiod hypothesis, which describes an internal, maternal effect-based mechanism to explain the cycles’ periods with a recent generalization explaining the amplitude of snowshoe hare cycles in northwestern North America based on initial predator abundance. By explaining the period and the amplitude of the cycle with separate mechanisms, a unified and consistent view of the causation of cycles is reached. Based on our suggested theory, we forecast the next snowshoe hare cycle (predicted peak in 2016 to be of extraordinarily low amplitude.

  3. Genetic modification of mammalian genome at chromosome level

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available The review is concerned with a progress in genetic modification of a mammalian genome in vitro and in vivo at chromosomal level. Recently three new approaches for the chromosome biotechnology have been developed: Using Cre/loxP-system a researcher is able to produce targeted rearrangements of whole chromosomes or their segments or particular genes within the genome, and therefore to modify the set, position and copy number of the endogenous elements of the genome. Mammalian artificial chromosomes (MACs provide a possibility to introduce into genome relatively large segments of alien chromosome material, either artificially constructed or derived from the genome of different species. Using ES-somatic cell hybrids allows to transfer whole chromosomes or their fragments between different genomes within and between species. Advantages and limitations of these approaches are discussed.

  4. Formation of mammalian erythrocytes: chromatin condensation and enucleation. (United States)

    Ji, Peng; Murata-Hori, Maki; Lodish, Harvey F


    In all vertebrates, the cell nucleus becomes highly condensed and transcriptionally inactive during the final stages of red cell biogenesis. Enucleation, the process by which the nucleus is extruded by budding off from the erythroblast, is unique to mammals. Enucleation has critical physiological and evolutionary significance in that it allows an elevation of hemoglobin levels in the blood and also gives red cells their flexible biconcave shape. Recent experiments reveal that enucleation involves multiple molecular and cellular pathways that include histone deacetylation, actin polymerization, cytokinesis, cell-matrix interactions, specific microRNAs and vesicle trafficking; many evolutionarily conserved proteins and genes have been recruited to participate in this uniquely mammalian process. In this review, we discuss recent advances in mammalian erythroblast chromatin condensation and enucleation, and conclude with our perspectives on future studies.

  5. A genetically encoded fluorescent probe in mammalian cells. (United States)

    Chatterjee, Abhishek; Guo, Jiantao; Lee, Hyun Soo; Schultz, Peter G


    Fluorescent reporters are useful in vitro and in vivo probes of protein structure, function, and localization. Here we report that the fluorescent amino acid, 3-(6-acetylnaphthalen-2-ylamino)-2-aminopropanoic acid (Anap), can be site-specifically incorporated into proteins in mammalian cells in response to the TAG codon with high efficiency using an orthogonal amber suppressor tRNA/aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase (aaRS) pair. We further demonstrate that Anap can be used to image the subcellular localization of proteins in live mammalian cells. The small size of Anap, its environment-sensitive fluorescence, and the ability to introduce Anap at specific sites in the proteome by simple mutagenesis make it a unique and valuable tool in eukaryotic cell biology.

  6. Adult neural stem cells in the mammalian central nervous system

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Dengke K Ma; Michael A Bonaguidi; Guo-li Ming; Hongjun Song


    Neural stem cells (NSCs) are present not only during the embryonic development but also in the adult brain of all mammalian species, including humans. Stem cell niche architecture in vivo enables adult NSCs to continuously generate functional neurons in specific brain regions throughout life. The adult neurogenesis process is subject to dynamic regulation by various physiological, pathological and pharmacological stimuli. Multipotent adult NSCs also appear to be intrinsically plastic, amenable to genetic programing during normal differentiation, and to epigenetic reprograming during de-differentiation into pluripotency. Increasing evidence suggests that adult NSCs significantly contribute to specialized neural functions under physiological and pathological conditions. Fully understanding the biology of adult NSCs will provide crucial insights into both the etiology and potential therapeutic interventions of major brain disorders. Here, we review recent progress on adult NSCs of the mammalian central nervous system, in-cluding topics on their identity, niche, function, plasticity, and emerging roles in cancer and regenerative medicine.

  7. Mammalian pheromones: emerging properties and mechanisms of detection. (United States)

    Stowers, Lisa; Kuo, Tsung-Han


    The concept of mammalian pheromones was established decades before the discovery of any bioactive ligands. Therefore, their molecular identity, native sources, and the meaning of their detection has been largely speculative. There has been recent success in identifying a variety of candidate mouse pheromones and other specialized odors. These discoveries reveal that mammalian pheromones come in a variety of ligand types and they are detected by sensory neurons that are pre-set to promote an array of social and survival behaviors. Importantly, recent findings show that they activate molecularly diverse sensory neurons that differ from canonical odorant detectors. These novel sensory neurons hold future promise to unlock the mystery of how their detection is hardwired to generate behavior.

  8. Phylogenetics and the correlates of mammalian sleep: a reappraisal. (United States)

    Lesku, John A; Roth, Timothy C; Rattenborg, Niels C; Amlaner, Charles J; Lima, Steven L


    The correlates of mammalian sleep have been investigated previously in at least eight comparative studies in an effort to illuminate the functions of sleep. However, all of these univariate analyses treated each species, or taxonomic Family, as a statistically independent unit, which is invalid due to the phylogenetic relationships among species. Here, we reassess these influential correlates of mammalian sleep using the formal phylogenetic framework of independent contrasts. After controlling for phylogeny using this procedure, the interpretation of many of the correlates changed. For instance, and contrary to previous studies, we found interspecific support for a neurophysiological role for rapid-eye-movement sleep, such as memory consolidation. Also in contrast to previous studies, we did not find comparative support for an energy conservation function for slow-wave sleep. Thus, the incorporation of a phylogenetic control into comparative analyses of sleep yields meaningful differences that affect our understanding of why we sleep.

  9. PepGMV Rep-Protein Expression in Mammalian Cells (United States)

    Chapa-Oliver, Angela María; Mejía-Teniente, Laura; García-Gasca, Teresa; Guevara-Gonzalez, Ramon Gerardo; Torres-Pacheco, Irineo


    The Geminiviruses genome is a small, single strand DNA that replicates in the plant cell nucleus. Analogous to animal DNA viruses, Geminiviruses depend on the host replication machinery to amplify their genomes and only supply the factors required to initiate their replication. Consequently, Geminiviruses remove the cell-cycle arrest and induce the host replication machinery using an endocycle process. They encode proteins, such as the conserved replication-associated proteins (Rep) that interact with retinoblastoma-like proteins in plants and alter the cell division cycle in yeasts. Therefore, the aim of this work is to analyze the impact of Pepper Golden Mosaic Virus (PepGMV) Rep protein in mammalian cells. Results indicate that the pTracer-SV40:Rep construction obtained in this work can be used to analyze the Rep protein effect in mammalian cells in order to compare the cell cycle regulation mechanisms in plants and animals. PMID:23170183

  10. Bacterial iron-sulfur cluster sensors in mammalian pathogens (United States)

    Miller, Halie K.; Auerbuch, Victoria


    Iron-sulfur clusters act as important cofactors for a number of transcriptional regulators in bacteria, including many mammalian pathogens. The sensitivity of iron-sulfur clusters to iron availability, oxygen tension, and reactive oxygen and nitrogen species enables bacteria to use such regulators to adapt their gene expression profiles rapidly in response to changing environmental conditions. In this review, we discuss how the [4Fe-4S] or [2Fe-2S] cluster-containing regulators FNR, Wbl, aconitase, IscR, NsrR, SoxR, and AirSR contribute to bacterial pathogenesis through control of both metabolism and classical virulence factors. In addition, we briefly review mammalian iron homeostasis as well as oxidative/nitrosative stress to provide context for understanding the function of bacterial iron-sulfur cluster sensors in different niches within the host. PMID:25738802

  11. Mammalian safety of Decaleside II in the laboratory mouse

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Rajashekar


    Full Text Available Decaleside II, a novel trisaccharide isolated from the edible roots of Decalepis hamiltonii, belongs to a new class of natural insecticides. We have evaluated the mammalian safety of Decaleside II in the laboratory mouse. Our results on acute and sub acute toxicity study suggest that Decaleside II is not toxic to the laboratory mice as there were no symptoms of toxicity or mortality up to 2400 mg/kg bw. Haematological profile was unaltered and serum profiles of enzymes were not significantly affected. The lack of toxicity of Decaleside is attributed to the 1,4 α linkage of the sugars which are easily hydrolyzed by the digestive enzymes such as glucosidases. The selective toxicity to insects and mammalian safety of Decaleside II makes them highly suitable for use as novel grain protectants of natural origin.

  12. Mammalian cycles: internally defined periods and interaction-driven amplitudes. (United States)

    Ginzburg, L R; Krebs, C J


    The cause of mammalian cycles-the rise and fall of populations over a predictable period of time-has remained controversial since these patterns were first observed over a century ago. In spite of extensive work on observable mammalian cycles, the field has remained divided upon what the true cause is, with a majority of opinions attributing it to either predation or to intra-species mechanisms. Here we unite the eigenperiod hypothesis, which describes an internal, maternal effect-based mechanism to explain the cycles' periods with a recent generalization explaining the amplitude of snowshoe hare cycles in northwestern North America based on initial predator abundance. By explaining the period and the amplitude of the cycle with separate mechanisms, a unified and consistent view of the causation of cycles is reached. Based on our suggested theory, we forecast the next snowshoe hare cycle (predicted peak in 2016) to be of extraordinarily low amplitude.

  13. Isolation, characterization and comparison of mammalian epidermal prekeratins. (United States)

    Bladon, P T; Taylor, M; Wood, E J; Cunliffe, W J


    1. The lower living layers of mammalian epidermis contain a cytoplasmic tonofilament protein, prekeratin, believed to be the precursor of the keratin which is found in the outer dead cell layer or stratum corneum. 2. Prekeratin is distinguished by its property of being extractable from epidermis homogenized in the presence of citric acid trisodium citrate buffer pH 2.65. 3. In the present study we have compared the epidermal prekeratins from ten mammalian species and have shown them to be of similar amino acid composition. 4. Conditions have been established for studying the immunology of these insoluble proteins and examination of their immunological properties has shown that they are similar to one another but that their antigenic determinants are different from those of callus keratin. 5. The SDS polyacrylamide gel electrophoretic patterns of these proteins differ widely and we have also demonstrated anatomical site variation by this method.

  14. Stability of resazurin in buffers and mammalian cell culture media

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Eva; Nicolaisen, G.M.


    The utility of a ferricyanide/ferrocyanide system used in the AlamarBlue(TM) (Serotec, Oxford, UK) vital. dye to inhibit the reduction of resazurin by mammalian cell culture media is questioned. Resazurin was found to be relatively stable when dissolved in phosphate-buffered saline (PBS). The use...... of HEPES resulted in a huge immediate dye reduction, which was significantly enhanced by exposure to diffuse light from fluorescent tubes in the laboratory 8 h per day. The reduction of resazurin by various cell culture media was time and temperature dependent, and it was significantly enhanced......'s nutrient mixture F-10 and F-12. Fetal calf serum (5-20%) slightly decreased resazurin reduction during the first 2 days of incubation. The reduction of resazurin by mammalian cell culture media do not appear to be problematic under normal culture conditions, and it is primarily dependent upon the presence...

  15. Report on Mammalian Fossils of Chinji Formation, Dhulian, Pakistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muhammad A. Khan


    Full Text Available Twenty mammalian fossil specimens of varying preservational state are described from the Chinji Formation of Dhulian, Pakistan. The remains described in this study are all teeth and represent the Proboscidea, Perissodactyla and Artiodactyla. All the dental specimens are new variants recorded here for the first time. Pliotriplopus dhulianensis is new to science having small size and absence of crista than Pliotriplopus chinjiensis. These findings extend the geographic distribution of this dentally highly derived Triplopinae, which was previously restricted to a single species, Pliotriplopus chinjiensis. Additional fossils of the three mammalian orders are necessary to shed new light on the phylogenetic relationships within the first representatives of the orders in Eurasia. A very important, deciduous tooth of the species Stegolophodon cautleyi hitherto unknown is described in this report.

  16. Gut microbes of mammalian herbivores facilitate intake of plant toxins. (United States)

    Kohl, Kevin D; Weiss, Robert B; Cox, James; Dale, Colin; Dearing, M Denise


    The foraging ecology of mammalian herbivores is strongly shaped by plant secondary compounds (PSCs) that defend plants against herbivory. Conventional wisdom holds that gut microbes facilitate the ingestion of toxic plants; however, this notion lacks empirical evidence. We investigated the gut microbiota of desert woodrats (Neotoma lepida), some populations of which specialise on highly toxic creosote bush (Larrea tridentata). Here, we demonstrate that gut microbes are crucial in allowing herbivores to consume toxic plants. Creosote toxins altered the population structure of the gut microbiome to facilitate an increase in abundance of genes that metabolise toxic compounds. In addition, woodrats were unable to consume creosote toxins after the microbiota was disrupted with antibiotics. Last, ingestion of toxins by naïve hosts was increased through microbial transplants from experienced donors. These results demonstrate that microbes can enhance the ability of hosts to consume PSCs and therefore expand the dietary niche breadth of mammalian herbivores.

  17. Cryptic species in putative ancient asexual darwinulids (Crustacea, Ostracoda.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isa Schön

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Fully asexually reproducing taxa lack outcrossing. Hence, the classic Biological Species Concept cannot be applied. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We used DNA sequences from the mitochondrial COI gene and the nuclear ITS2 region to check species boundaries according to the evolutionary genetic (EG species concept in five morphospecies in the putative ancient asexual ostracod genera, Penthesilenula and Darwinula, from different continents. We applied two methods for detecting cryptic species, namely the K/θ method and the General Mixed Yule Coalescent model (GMYC. We could confirm the existence of species in all five darwinulid morphospecies and additional cryptic diversity in three morphospecies, namely in Penthesilenula brasiliensis, Darwinula stevensoni and in P. aotearoa. The number of cryptic species within one morphospecies varied between seven (P. brasiliensis, five to six (D. stevensoni and two (P. aotearoa, respectively, depending on the method used. Cryptic species mainly followed continental distributions. We also found evidence for coexistence at the local scale for Brazilian cryptic species of P. brasiliensis and P. aotearoa. Our ITS2 data confirmed that species exist in darwinulids but detected far less EG species, namely two to three cryptic species in P. brasiliensis and no cryptic species at all in the other darwinulid morphospecies. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results clearly demonstrate that both species and cryptic diversity can be recognized in putative ancient asexual ostracods using the EG species concept, and that COI data are more suitable than ITS2 for this purpose. The discovery of up to eight cryptic species within a single morphospecies will significantly increase estimates of biodiversity in this asexual ostracod group. Which factors, other than long-term geographic isolation, are important for speciation processes in these ancient asexuals remains to be investigated.

  18. Ancient Leishmaniasis in a highland desert of Northern Chile.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Antonietta Costa

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Leishmaniasis is an infectious disease endemic today in many areas of South America. METHODOLOGY: We discovered morphologic and molecular evidence of ancient infections in 4 female skulls in the archaeological cemetery of Coyo Oriente, in the desert of San Pedro de Atacama, Northern Chile. The boney facial lesions visible in the skulls could have been caused by a number of chronic infections including chronic Leishmaniasis. This diagnosis was confirmed using PCR-sequenced analyses of bone fragments from the skulls of the affected individuals.Leishmaniasis is not normally found in the high-altitude desert of Northern Chile; where the harsh climate does not allow the parasite to complete its life cycle. The presence of Leishmaniasis in ancient skulls from the region implies infection by the protozoan in an endemic area-likely, in our subjects, to have been the lowlands of North-Eastern Argentina or in Southern Bolivia. CONCLUSIONS: We propose that the presence of the disease in ancient times in the high altitude desert of San Pedro de Atacama is the result of an exogamic system of patrilocal marriages, where women from different cultures followed their husbands to their ancestral homes, allowing immigrant women, infected early in life, to be incorporated in the Atacama desert society before they became disfigured by the disease. The present globalization of goods and services and the extraordinary facile movement of people across borders and continents have lead to a resurgence of infectious diseases and re-emergence of infections such as Leishmaniasis. We show here that such factors were already present millennia ago, shaping demographic trends and the epidemiology of infections just as they do today.

  19. An Atlas of Submarine Glacial Landforms: Modern, Quaternary and Ancient (United States)

    Jakobsson, M.; Dowdeswell, J. A.; Canals, M.; Todd, B. J.; Dowdeswell, E. K.; Hogan, K. A.


    In the past two decades there have been several advances that make the production of an atlas of submarine glacial landforms timely. First is the development of high-resolution imaging technologies; multi-beam echo-sounding or swath bathymetry that allows the detailed mapping of the sea floor at water depths of tens to thousands of metres across continental margins, and 3-D seismic methods that enable the visualisation of palaeo-continental shelves in Quaternary sediments and ancient palaeo-glacial rocks (e.g. Late Ordovician of Northern Africa). A second technological development is that of ice-breaking or ice-strengthened ships that can penetrate deep into the ice-infested waters of the Arctic and Antarctic, to deploy the multibeam systems. A third component is that of relevance - through both the recognition that the polar regions, and especially the Arctic, are particularly sensitive parts of the global environmental system and that these high-latitude margins (both modern and ancient) are likely to contain significant hydrocarbon resources. An enhanced understanding of the sediments and landforms of these fjord-shelf-slope systems is, therefore, of increasing importance to both academics and industry. We are editing an Atlas of Submarine Glacial Landforms that presents a series of individual contributions that describe, discuss and illustrate features on the high-latitude, glacier-influenced sea floor. Contributions are organised in two ways: first, by position on a continental margin - from fjords, through continental shelves to the continental slope and rise; secondly, by scale - as individual landforms and assemblages of landforms. A final section provides discussion of integrated fjord-shelf-slope systems. Over 100 contributions by scientists from many countries contain descriptions and interpretation of swath-bathymetric data from both Arctic and Antarctic margins and use 3D seismic data to investigate ancient glacial landforms. The Atlas will be

  20. The First Attested Extraction of Ancient DNA in Legumes (Fabaceae). (United States)

    Mikić, Aleksandar M


    Ancient DNA (aDNA) is any DNA extracted from ancient specimens, important for diverse evolutionary researches. The major obstacles in aDNA studies are mutations, contamination and fragmentation. Its studies may be crucial for crop history if integrated with human aDNA research and historical linguistics, both general and relating to agriculture. Legumes (Fabaceae) are one of the richest end economically most important plant families, not only from Neolithic onwards, since they were used as food by Neanderthals and Paleolithic modern man. The idea of extracting and analyzing legume aDNA was considered beneficial for both basic science and applied research, with an emphasis on genetic resources and plant breeding. The first reported successful and attested extraction of the legume aDNA was done from the sample of charred seeds of pea (Pisum sativum) and bitter vetch (Vicia ervilia) from Hissar, southeast Serbia, dated to 1,350-1,000 Before Christ. A modified version of cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) method and the commercial kit for DNA extraction QIAGEN DNAesy yielded several ng μl(-1) of aDNA of both species and, after the whole genome amplification and with a fragment of nuclear ribosomal DNA gene 26S rDNA, resulted in the detection of the aDNA among the PCR products. A comparative analysis of four informative chloroplast DNA regions (trnSG, trnK, matK, and rbcL) among the modern wild and cultivated pea taxa demonstrated not only that the extracted aDNA was genuine, on the basis of mutation rate, but also that the ancient Hissar pea was most likely an early domesticated crop, related to the modern wild pea of a neighboring region. It is anticipated that this premier extraction of legume aDNA may provide taxonomists with the answers to diverse questions, such as leaf development in legumes, as well as with novel data on the single steps in domesticating legume crops worldwide.