WorldWideScience

Sample records for assessing biological significance

  1. Biological significance of selenium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Duerre, P.; Andreesen, J.R.

    1986-02-01

    Until a few years ago, selenium was exclusively thought of as a toxic substance which was applied mainly in the optical and electrical industries. By now, many biological reactions have been detected which cannot take place without the catalytic effect of selenium. The majority of these processes was found and clarified in microorganisms; however, the anticarcinogenic properties of this trace element may well have some significance for man in future.

  2. Development of the PCAD Model to Assess Biological Significance of Acoustic Disturbance

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-09-30

    move in to the main study area in 1996 and 1997, coincident with the ban on net fishing. During a severe red tide event in 2005, resident animals were...behavioral plasticity in the recovery phase of dives. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 333:306-314. Costa, D. P. 1987. Isotopic

  3. 76 FR 8708 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-02-15

    ... Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent for Arundo donax AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection... Service relative to a proposed biological control program for Arundo donax (giant reed, Carrizo cane). The... biological control program. Based on its finding of no significant impact, the Animal and Plant Health...

  4. 76 FR 4859 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-27

    ... Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent for Asian Citrus Psyllid AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health... continental United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of Asian citrus psyllid... use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of Asian citrus psyllid (ACP) infestations...

  5. 78 FR 14509 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-03-06

    ... Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent for Hemlock Woolly Adelgid AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health... eastern United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of hemlock woolly... biological control agent into the eastern United States. \\1\\ To view the notice, EA, and FONSI go to http...

  6. 76 FR 42675 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-19

    ... Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent for Hemlock Woolly Adelgid AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health... biological control agent to reduce the severity of hemlock woolly adelgid (Adelges tsugae, HWA) infestations... release of this biological control agent into the continental United States. \\1\\ To view the notice, EA...

  7. 76 FR 15935 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-03-22

    ... Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent for Air Potato AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection... biological control agent to reduce the severity of air potato (Dioscorea bulbifera) infestations. On January... this biological control agent into the continental United States. \\1\\ To view the notice, EA, and FONSI...

  8. 75 FR 23221 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-03

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE... Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent for Water Hyacinth AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health... for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of water hyacinth infestations. Based on...

  9. Chemical and Biological Significance of Naturally Occurring ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    PROF HORSFALL

    and www.bioline.org.br/j a. Chemical and Biological Significance of Naturally Occurring Additives on. African Black Soap and its Performance. IKOTUN, A. ADEBOMI; OGUNDELE, O. FISAYO; KAYODE, O. MOBOLAJI;. *AJAELU, C. JOHN. Department of Chemistry and Industrial Chemistry, Bowen Univeristy, Iwo, Nigeria.

  10. Metabolomics: Definitions and Significance in Systems Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klassen, Aline; Faccio, Andréa Tedesco; Canuto, Gisele André Baptista; da Cruz, Pedro Luis Rocha; Ribeiro, Henrique Caracho; Tavares, Marina Franco Maggi; Sussulini, Alessandra

    2017-01-01

    Nowadays, there is a growing interest in deeply understanding biological mechanisms not only at the molecular level (biological components) but also the effects of an ongoing biological process in the organism as a whole (biological functionality), as established by the concept of systems biology. Within this context, metabolomics is one of the most powerful bioanalytical strategies that allow obtaining a picture of the metabolites of an organism in the course of a biological process, being considered as a phenotyping tool. Briefly, metabolomics approach consists in identifying and determining the set of metabolites (or specific metabolites) in biological samples (tissues, cells, fluids, or organisms) under normal conditions in comparison with altered states promoted by disease, drug treatment, dietary intervention, or environmental modulation. The aim of this chapter is to review the fundamentals and definitions used in the metabolomics field, as well as to emphasize its importance in systems biology and clinical studies.

  11. Biological significance of soluble IL-2 receptor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Calogero Caruso

    1993-01-01

    Full Text Available A NUMBER of receptors for growth factors and differentiation antigens have been found to be secreted or released by cells. Following mononuclear cell (MNC activation and interleukin-2 receptor (IL-2R expression, a soluble form of the Alpha;-chain of IL-2R (sIL-2R is released. The sIL-2R has been shown to be present in the culture supernatants of activated MNCs as well as in normal sera and, in higher amounts, in sera from subjects affected by several diseases including neoplastic, infectious and autoimmune ones, and in sera from transplanted patients suffering allograft rejection. The blood sIL-2R levels depend on the number of producing cells and the number of molecules per cell, so that sIL-2R blood values may represent an index of the number and the functional state of producing cells, both normal and neoplastic. Thus, monitoring of the immune system, mostly T-cells and haematological malignancies might be targets for the measurement of sIL-2R. Since many conditions may influence sIL-2R production, little diagnostic use may result from these measurements. However, since blood sIL-2R levels may correlate with disease progression and/or response to therapy, their measurement may be a useful index of activity and extent of disease. The precise biological role of the soluble form of the IL-2R is still a matter of debate. However, we know that increased sIL-2R levels may be observed in association with several immunological abnormalities and that sIL-2R is able to bind IL-2. It is conceivable then that in these conditions the excess sIL-2R released in vivo by activated lymphoid cells or by neoplastic cells may somehow regulate IL-2-dependent processes. On the other hand, it cannot exclude that sIL-2R is a by-product without biological significance. Finally, it is puzzling that in many conditions in which an increase of blood sIL-2R values has been observed, MNCs display a decreased in vitro capacity to produce sIL-2R. These seemingly contrasting

  12. Lycopene metabolism and its biological significance12345

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    The beneficial effects of a high intake of tomatoes and tomato products on the risk of certain chronic diseases have been presented in many epidemiologic studies, with the suggestion that lycopene (a major carotenoid in tomatoes) is a micronutrient with important health benefits. Within the past few years, we have gained greater knowledge of the metabolism of lycopene and the biological effects of lycopene derivatives. In particular, the characterization and study of β-carotene 9′,10′-oxygenase has shown that this enzyme can catalyze the excentric cleavage of both provitamin and non–provitamin A carotenoids to form apo-10′-carotenoids, including apo-10′-lycopenoids from lycopene. This raised an important question of whether the effect of lycopene on various cellular functions and signaling pathways is a result of the direct actions of intact lycopene or its derivatives. Several reports, including our own, support the notion that the biological activities of lycopene can be mediated by apo-10′-lycopenoids. More research is clearly needed to identify and characterize additional lycopene metabolites and their biological activities, which will potentially provide invaluable insights into the mechanisms underlying the effects of lycopene in humans. PMID:23053559

  13. Dietary Polyphenols and Their Biological Significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongxiang Lou

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Dietary polyphenols represent a wide variety of compounds that occur in fruits,vegetables, wine, tea, extra virgin olive oil, chocolate and other cocoa products. They aremostly derivatives and/or isomers of flavones, isoflavones, flavonols, catechins andphenolic acids, and possess diverse biological properties such as antioxidant, antiapoptosis,anti-aging, anticarcinogen, anti-inflammation, anti-atherosclerosis, cardiovascularprotection, improvement of the endothelial function, as well as inhibition of angiogenesisand cell proliferation activity. Most of these biological actions have been attributed to theirintrinsic reducing capabilities. They may also offer indirect protection by activatingendogenous defense systems and by modulating cellular signaling processes such asnuclear factor-kappa B (NF-кB activation, activator protein-1(AP-1 DNA binding,glutathione biosynthesis, phosphoinositide 3 (PI3-kinase/protein kinase B (Akt pathway,mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK proteins [extracellular signal-regulated proteinkinase (ERK, c-jun N-terminal kinase (JNK and P38 ] activation, and the translocationinto the nucleus of nuclear factor erythroid 2 related factor 2 (Nrf2. This paper covers themost recent literature on the subject, and describes the biological mechanisms of action andprotective effects of dietary polyphenols.

  14. Biological significance of peptides from Anemonia sulcata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alsen, C

    1983-01-01

    Three polypeptide toxins have been isolated from the sea anemone Anemonia sulcata and characterized: ATX I (mol wt 4702), ATX II (mol wt 4935), and ATX II (mol wt 2678). In different crustacean and amphibian preparations the toxins act primarily on the fast sodium channels, which leads to delayed inactivation of fast sodium permeability and thus increases the duration of the action potential. When applied to crustacean preparations the three toxins are nearly equally effective. However, in a comparison of the biological activities of ATX I and ATX II in myelinated nerves of the frog, ATX I seems to be inactive. It is suggested that cardiotoxicity is the primary cause of death in mammals, ATX II being more toxic than ATX I. At very low concentrations ATX II induces a pronounced positive inotropic effect in different mammalian heart preparations, which is accompanied by a prolongation of the action potential. It is suggested that the positive inotropic effect of ATX II is caused by a delayed inactivation of the fast sodium current, which leads to an increase of the sodium transient and of the pump activity of Na+,K+-ATPase. In contrast to the presynaptic mode of action on crustacean and frog nerve-muscle preparations, ATX II has a direct effect on mammalian skeletal muscle fiber membranes and induces a sodium-dependent increase of twitch responses and duration of the action potential.

  15. UT ARMPA Map 2.2 Biologically Significant Units

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of the Interior — This data set was created to depict “biologically significant units” (BSU) from the BLM Greater Sage-Grouse Land Use Planning Strategy – Utah Sub-Region. This data...

  16. Biological, ecological and agronomic significance of plant phenolic ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Phenolics are low molecular compounds ubiquitous in all tissues of higher plants with great significance in plant development. Our understanding of some phenolic compounds in the last few decades has greatly improved. However, their biological, ecological and agronomical significance in the rhizosphere of most ...

  17. Synthetic biology and the moral significance of artificial life

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christiansen, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    I discuss the moral significance of artificial life within synthetic biology via a discussion of Douglas, Powell and Savulescu's paper 'Is the creation of artificial life morally significant’. I argue that the definitions of 'artificial life’ and of 'moral significance’ are too narrow. Douglas......, Powell and Savulescu's definition of artificial life does not capture all core projects of synthetic biology or the ethical concerns that have been voiced, and their definition of moral significance fails to take into account the possibility that creating artificial life is conditionally acceptable....... Finally, I show how several important objections to synthetic biology are plausibly understood as arguing that creating artificial life in a wide sense is only conditionally acceptable....

  18. Adaptive Significance of Circadian Rhythms-Biological Clocks and ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Resonance – Journal of Science Education; Volume 4; Issue 1. Adaptive Significance of Circadian Rhythms - Biological Clocks and Darwinian Fitness in Cyanobacteria. V Sheeba Vijay Kumar Sharma Amitabh Joshi. Research News Volume 4 Issue 1 January 1999 pp 73-75 ...

  19. Can Educationally Significant Learning Be Assessed?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stolz, Steven A.

    2017-01-01

    This article argues that assessment is a central feature of teaching, particularly as a means to determine whether what has been taught has been learnt. However, I take issue with the current trend in education which places a significant amount of emphasis upon large-scale public testing, which in turn has exacerbated the…

  20. Comparing Criteria: Assessing the Significance of Memorials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lisa Murray

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available This article focuses on the practicalities of assessing the cultural significance of memorials. It outlines the main criteria that are currently in use in New South Wales – The Burra Charter, the NSW Heritage Branch assessment criteria and the National Trust’s Heritage Values for Cemeteries – and considers which are the most appropriate to apply to memorials. In doing this it highlights the inadequacies of significance criteria in capturing the memorial process and contested memories that are often attached to memorials. The philosophical question of when a memorial becomes heritage is also considered; and whether the act of heritage listing is a form of memorialisation in itself. This article draws upon the work of the Cemeteries Committee, a conservation technical committee of the National Trust of Australia (NSW.

  1. Sibling Competition & Growth Tradeoffs. Biological vs. Statistical Significance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karen L Kramer

    Full Text Available Early childhood growth has many downstream effects on future health and reproduction and is an important measure of offspring quality. While a tradeoff between family size and child growth outcomes is theoretically predicted in high-fertility societies, empirical evidence is mixed. This is often attributed to phenotypic variation in parental condition. However, inconsistent study results may also arise because family size confounds the potentially differential effects that older and younger siblings can have on young children's growth. Additionally, inconsistent results might reflect that the biological significance associated with different growth trajectories is poorly understood. This paper addresses these concerns by tracking children's monthly gains in height and weight from weaning to age five in a high fertility Maya community. We predict that: 1 as an aggregate measure family size will not have a major impact on child growth during the post weaning period; 2 competition from young siblings will negatively impact child growth during the post weaning period; 3 however because of their economic value, older siblings will have a negligible effect on young children's growth. Accounting for parental condition, we use linear mixed models to evaluate the effects that family size, younger and older siblings have on children's growth. Congruent with our expectations, it is younger siblings who have the most detrimental effect on children's growth. While we find statistical evidence of a quantity/quality tradeoff effect, the biological significance of these results is negligible in early childhood. Our findings help to resolve why quantity/quality studies have had inconsistent results by showing that sibling competition varies with sibling age composition, not just family size, and that biological significance is distinct from statistical significance.

  2. Sibling Competition & Growth Tradeoffs. Biological vs. Statistical Significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kramer, Karen L; Veile, Amanda; Otárola-Castillo, Erik

    2016-01-01

    Early childhood growth has many downstream effects on future health and reproduction and is an important measure of offspring quality. While a tradeoff between family size and child growth outcomes is theoretically predicted in high-fertility societies, empirical evidence is mixed. This is often attributed to phenotypic variation in parental condition. However, inconsistent study results may also arise because family size confounds the potentially differential effects that older and younger siblings can have on young children's growth. Additionally, inconsistent results might reflect that the biological significance associated with different growth trajectories is poorly understood. This paper addresses these concerns by tracking children's monthly gains in height and weight from weaning to age five in a high fertility Maya community. We predict that: 1) as an aggregate measure family size will not have a major impact on child growth during the post weaning period; 2) competition from young siblings will negatively impact child growth during the post weaning period; 3) however because of their economic value, older siblings will have a negligible effect on young children's growth. Accounting for parental condition, we use linear mixed models to evaluate the effects that family size, younger and older siblings have on children's growth. Congruent with our expectations, it is younger siblings who have the most detrimental effect on children's growth. While we find statistical evidence of a quantity/quality tradeoff effect, the biological significance of these results is negligible in early childhood. Our findings help to resolve why quantity/quality studies have had inconsistent results by showing that sibling competition varies with sibling age composition, not just family size, and that biological significance is distinct from statistical significance.

  3. Splitting the BLOSUM Score into Numbers of Biological Significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tossi Alessandro

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Mathematical tools developed in the context of Shannon information theory were used to analyze the meaning of the BLOSUM score, which was split into three components termed as the BLOSUM spectrum (or BLOSpectrum. These relate respectively to the sequence convergence (the stochastic similarity of the two protein sequences, to the background frequency divergence (typicality of the amino acid probability distribution in each sequence, and to the target frequency divergence (compliance of the amino acid variations between the two sequences to the protein model implicit in the BLOCKS database. This treatment sharpens the protein sequence comparison, providing a rationale for the biological significance of the obtained score, and helps to identify weakly related sequences. Moreover, the BLOSpectrum can guide the choice of the most appropriate scoring matrix, tailoring it to the evolutionary divergence associated with the two sequences, or indicate if a compositionally adjusted matrix could perform better.

  4. Medline search engine for finding genetic markers with biological significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xuan, Weijian; Wang, Pinglang; Watson, Stanley J; Meng, Fan

    2007-09-15

    Genome-wide high density SNP association studies are expected to identify various SNP alleles associated with different complex disorders. Understanding the biological significance of these SNP alleles in the context of existing literature is a major challenge since existing search engines are not designed to search literature for SNPs or other genetic markers. The literature mining of gene and protein functions has received significant attention and effort while similar work on genetic markers and their related diseases is still in its infancy. Our goal is to develop a web-based tool that facilitates the mining of Medline literature related to genetic studies and gene/protein function studies. Our solution consists of four main function modules for (1) identification of different types of genetic markers or genetic variations in Medline records (2) distinguishing positive versus negative linkage or association between genetic markers and diseases (3) integrating marker genomic location data from different databases to enable the retrieval of Medline records related to markers in the same linkage disequilibrium region (4) and a web interface called MarkerInfoFinder to search, display, sort and download Medline citation results. Tests using published data suggest MarkerInfoFinder can significantly increase the efficiency of finding genetic disorders and their underlying molecular mechanisms. The functions we developed will also be used to build a knowledge base for genetic markers and diseases. The MarkerInfoFinder is publicly available at: http://brainarray.mbni.med.umich.edu/brainarray/datamining/MarkerInfoFinder.

  5. Selenium: environmental significance, pollution, and biological treatment technologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Lea Chua; Nancharaiah, Yarlagadda V; van Hullebusch, Eric D; Lens, Piet N L

    2016-01-01

    Selenium is an essential trace element needed for all living organisms. Despite its essentiality, selenium is a potential toxic element to natural ecosystems due to its bioaccumulation potential. Though selenium is found naturally in the earth's crust, especially in carbonate rocks and volcanic and sedimentary soils, about 40% of the selenium emissions to atmospheric and aquatic environments are caused by various industrial activities such as mining-related operations. In recent years, advances in water quality and pollution monitoring have shown that selenium is a contaminant of potential environmental concern. This has practical implications on industry to achieve the stringent selenium regulatory discharge limit of 5μgSeL(-1) for selenium containing wastewaters set by the United States Environmental Protection Agency. Over the last few decades, various technologies have been developed for the treatment of selenium-containing wastewaters. Biological selenium reduction has emerged as the leading technology for removing selenium from wastewaters since it offers a cheaper alternative compared to physico-chemical treatments and is suitable for treating dilute and variable selenium-laden wastewaters. Moreover, biological treatment has the advantage of forming elemental selenium nanospheres which exhibit unique optical and spectral properties for various industrial applications, i.e. medical, electrical, and manufacturing processes. However, despite the advances in biotechnology employing selenium reduction, there are still several challenges, particularly in achieving stringent discharge limits, the long-term stability of biogenic selenium and predicting the fate of bioreduced selenium in the environment. This review highlights the significance of selenium in the environment, health, and industry and biotechnological advances made in the treatment of selenium contaminated wastewaters. The challenges and future perspectives are overviewed considering recent

  6. Detection of statistically significant network changes in complex biological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mall, Raghvendra; Cerulo, Luigi; Bensmail, Halima; Iavarone, Antonio; Ceccarelli, Michele

    2017-03-04

    Biological networks contribute effectively to unveil the complex structure of molecular interactions and to discover driver genes especially in cancer context. It can happen that due to gene mutations, as for example when cancer progresses, the gene expression network undergoes some amount of localized re-wiring. The ability to detect statistical relevant changes in the interaction patterns induced by the progression of the disease can lead to the discovery of novel relevant signatures. Several procedures have been recently proposed to detect sub-network differences in pairwise labeled weighted networks. In this paper, we propose an improvement over the state-of-the-art based on the Generalized Hamming Distance adopted for evaluating the topological difference between two networks and estimating its statistical significance. The proposed procedure exploits a more effective model selection criteria to generate p-values for statistical significance and is more efficient in terms of computational time and prediction accuracy than literature methods. Moreover, the structure of the proposed algorithm allows for a faster parallelized implementation. In the case of dense random geometric networks the proposed approach is 10-15x faster and achieves 5-10% higher AUC, Precision/Recall, and Kappa value than the state-of-the-art. We also report the application of the method to dissect the difference between the regulatory networks of IDH-mutant versus IDH-wild-type glioma cancer. In such a case our method is able to identify some recently reported master regulators as well as novel important candidates. We show that our network differencing procedure can effectively and efficiently detect statistical significant network re-wirings in different conditions. When applied to detect the main differences between the networks of IDH-mutant and IDH-wild-type glioma tumors, it correctly selects sub-networks centered on important key regulators of these two different subtypes. In

  7. Nutritional Assessment: Its Significance in Medical Education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozerol, Nail H.

    1982-01-01

    Medical educators must make every effort to achieve an adequate level of nutrition education for all health professionals. Medical schools should adopt a basic, required curriculum including biochemical and physiological aspects of nutrients, a clinical nutrition program for prevention of health hazards, and a course in nutritional assessment.…

  8. Induction, regulation, degradation, and biological significance of mammalian metallothioneins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miles, A T; Hawksworth, G M; Beattie, J H; Rodilla, V

    2000-01-01

    MTs are small cysteine-rich metal-binding proteins found in many species and, although there are differences between them, it is of note that they have a great deal of sequence and structural homology. Mammalian MTs are 61 or 62 amino acid polypeptides containing 20 conserved cysteine residues that underpin the binding of metals. The existence of MT across species is indicative of its biological demand, while the conservation of cysteines indicates that these are undoubtedly central to the function of this protein. Four MT isoforms have been found so far, MT-1, MT-2, MT-3, and MT-4, but these also have subtypes with 17 MT genes identified in man, of which 10 are known to be functional. Different cells express different MT isoforms with varying levels of expression perhaps as a result of the different function of each isoform. Even different metals induce and bind to MTs to different extents. Over 40 years of research into MT have yielded much information on this protein, but have failed to assign to it a definitive biological role. The fact that multiple MT isoforms exist, and the great variety of substances and agents that act as inducers, further complicates the search for the biological role of MTs. This article reviews the current knowledge on the biochemistry, induction, regulation, and degradation of this protein in mammals, with a particular emphasis on human MTs. It also considers the possible biological roles of this protein, which include participation in cell proliferation and apoptosis, homeostasis of essential metals, cellular free radical scavenging, and metal detoxification.

  9. Posttranslational modifications of proopiomelanocortin in vertebrates and their biological significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akiyoshi eTakahashi

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Proopiomelanocortin (POMC is the precursor of several peptide hormones generated in the pituitary gland. After biosynthesis, POMC undergoes several posttranslational modifications, including proteolytic cleavage, acetylation, amidation, phosphorylation, glycosylation, and disulfide linkage formation, which generate mature POMC-derived peptides. Therefore, POMC is a useful model for the investigation of posttranslational modifications. These processes have been extensively investigated in mammals, primarily in rodents. In addition, over the last decade, much information has been obtained about the posttranslational processing of POMC in non-mammalian animals such as fish, amphibians, reptiles, and birds through sequencing and peptide identification by mass spectrometry. One POMC modification, acetylation, is known to modulate the biological activities of POMC-derived alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (alpha-MSH having an acetyl group at N-terminal through potentiation or inhibition. This bidirectional regulation depends on its intrinsic roles in the tissue or cell; for example, alpha-MSH, as well as desacety-alpha-MSH, stimulates pigment dispersion in the xanthophores of a flounder. In contrast, alpha-MSH does not stimulate pigment dispersion in the melanophores of the same species, whereas desacetyl-alpha-MSH does. Regulation of pigment-dispersing activities may be associated with the subtle balance in the expression of receptor genes. In this review, we consider the posttranslational modifications of POMC in vertebrates from an evolutionary aspect, with a focus on the relationship between acetylation and the biological activities of alpha-MSH as an important consequence of posttranslational modification.

  10. Modeling cell-in-cell structure into its biological significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, M-f; Wang, S; Wang, Y; Wang, X-n

    2013-05-16

    Although cell-in-cell structure was noted 100 years ago, the molecular mechanisms of 'entering' and the destination of cell-in-cell remain largely unclear. It takes place among the same type of cells (homotypic cell-in-cell) or different types of cells (heterotypic cell-in-cell). Cell-in-cell formation affects both effector cells and their host cells in multiple aspects, while cell-in-cell death is under more intensive investigation. Given that cell-in-cell has an important role in maintaining homeostasis, aberrant cell-in-cell process contributes to the etiopathology in humans. Indeed, cell-in-cell is observed in many pathological processes of human diseases. In this review, we intend to discuss the biological models of cell-in-cell structures under physiological and pathological status.

  11. Significance and Biological Importance of Pyrimidine in the Microbial World

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vinita Sharma

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Microbes are unique creatures that adapt to varying lifestyles and environment resistance in extreme or adverse conditions. The genetic architecture of microbe may bear a significant signature not only in the sequences position, but also in the lifestyle to which it is adapted. It becomes a challenge for the society to find new chemical entities which can treat microbial infections. The present review aims to focus on account of important chemical moiety, that is, pyrimidine and its various derivatives as antimicrobial agents. In the current studies we represent more than 200 pyrimidines as antimicrobial agents with different mono-, di-, tri-, and tetrasubstituted classes along with in vitro antimicrobial activities of pyrimidines derivatives which can facilitate the development of more potent and effective antimicrobial agents.

  12. Hubs of knowledge: using the functional link structure in Biozon to mine for biologically significant entities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isganitis Timothy

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Existing biological databases support a variety of queries such as keyword or definition search. However, they do not provide any measure of relevance for the instances reported, and result sets are usually sorted arbitrarily. Results We describe a system that builds upon the complex infrastructure of the Biozon database and applies methods similar to those of Google to rank documents that match queries. We explore different prominence models and study the spectral properties of the corresponding data graphs. We evaluate the information content of principal and non-principal eigenspaces, and test various scoring functions which combine contributions from multiple eigenspaces. We also test the effect of similarity data and other variations which are unique to the biological knowledge domain on the quality of the results. Query result sets are assessed using a probabilistic approach that measures the significance of coherence between directly connected nodes in the data graph. This model allows us, for the first time, to compare different prominence models quantitatively and effectively and to observe unique trends. Conclusion Our tests show that the ranked query results outperform unsorted results with respect to our significance measure and the top ranked entities are typically linked to many other biological entities. Our study resulted in a working ranking system of biological entities that was integrated into Biozon at http://biozon.org.

  13. Hubs of knowledge: using the functional link structure in Biozon to mine for biologically significant entities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shafer, Paul; Isganitis, Timothy; Yona, Golan

    2006-02-15

    Existing biological databases support a variety of queries such as keyword or definition search. However, they do not provide any measure of relevance for the instances reported, and result sets are usually sorted arbitrarily. We describe a system that builds upon the complex infrastructure of the Biozon database and applies methods similar to those of Google to rank documents that match queries. We explore different prominence models and study the spectral properties of the corresponding data graphs. We evaluate the information content of principal and non-principal eigenspaces, and test various scoring functions which combine contributions from multiple eigenspaces. We also test the effect of similarity data and other variations which are unique to the biological knowledge domain on the quality of the results. Query result sets are assessed using a probabilistic approach that measures the significance of coherence between directly connected nodes in the data graph. This model allows us, for the first time, to compare different prominence models quantitatively and effectively and to observe unique trends. Our tests show that the ranked query results outperform unsorted results with respect to our significance measure and the top ranked entities are typically linked to many other biological entities. Our study resulted in a working ranking system of biological entities that was integrated into Biozon at http://biozon.org.

  14. Detecting modules in biological networks by edge weight clustering and entropy significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola eLecca

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Detection of the modular structure of biological networks is of interest to researchers adopting a systems perspective for the analysis of omics data. Computational systems biology has provided a rich array of methods for network clustering. To date, the majority of approaches address this task through a network node classification based on topological or external quantifiable properties of network nodes. Conversely, numerical properties of network edges are underused, even though the information content which can be associated with network edges has augmented due to steady advances in molecular biology technology over the last decade. Properly accounting for network edges in the development of clustering approaches can become crucial to improve quantitative interpretation of omics data. We present a novel technique for network module detection, named WG-Cluster (Weighted Graph CLUSTERing. WG-Cluster's notable features are the: (1 simultaneous exploitation of network node and edge weights to improve the biological interpretability of connected components detected, (2 assessment of their statistical significance, and (3 identification of emerging topological properties in the connected components. Applying WG-Cluster to a protein-protein network weighted by measurements of differential gene expression permitted to explore the changes in network topology under two distinct (normal vs tumour conditions.

  15. Towards a biological geriatric assessment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tuttle, Camilla S.L.; Maier, Andrea B.

    2017-01-01

    The aging process occurs gradually, is highly individual, with a high degree of inter and intra-individual differences. As such, within an aging population there is significant variation in regards to extent of age related disease and functional impairment. This variability between individuals is

  16. The Molecular Biology Capstone Assessment: A Concept Assessment for Upper-Division Molecular Biology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couch, Brian A.; Wood, William B.; Knight, Jennifer K.

    2015-01-01

    Measuring students' conceptual understandings has become increasingly important to biology faculty members involved in evaluating and improving departmental programs. We developed the Molecular Biology Capstone Assessment (MBCA) to gauge comprehension of fundamental concepts in molecular and cell biology and the ability to apply these concepts in…

  17. Results of efforts by the Convention on Biological Diversity to describe ecologically or biologically significant marine areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bax, Nicholas J; Cleary, Jesse; Donnelly, Ben; Dunn, Daniel C; Dunstan, Piers K; Fuller, Mike; Halpin, Patrick N

    2016-06-01

    In 2004, Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) addressed a United Nations (UN) call for area-based planning, including for marine-protected areas that resulted in a global effort to describe ecologically or biologically significant marine areas (EBSAs). We summarized the results, assessed their consistency, and evaluated the process developed by the Secretariat of the CBD to engage countries and experts in 9 regional workshops held from 2011 to 2014. Experts from 92 countries and 79 regional or international bodies participated. They considered 250 million km(2) of the world's ocean area (two-thirds of the total). The 204 areas they examined in detail differed widely in area (from 5.5 km(2) to 11.1 million km(2) ). Despite the initial focus of the CBD process on areas outside national jurisdiction, only 31 of the areas examined were solely outside national jurisdiction. Thirty-five extended into national jurisdictions, 137 were solely within national jurisdictions, and 28 included the jurisdictions of more than 1 country (1 area lacked precise boundaries). Data were sufficient to rank 88-99% of the areas relative to each of the 7 criteria for EBSAs agreed to previously by Parties to the CBD. The naturalness criterion ranked high for a smaller percentage of the EBSAs (31%) than other criteria (51-70%), indicating the difficulty in finding relatively undisturbed areas in the ocean. The highly participatory nature of the workshops, including easy and consistent access to the relevant information facilitated by 2 technical teams, contributed to the workshop participants success in identifying areas that could be ranked relative to most criteria and areas that extend across jurisdictional boundaries. The formal recognition of workshop results by the Conference of Parties to the CBD resulted in these 204 areas being identified as EBSAs by the 196 Parties. They represent the only suite of marine areas recognized by the international community for their

  18. Determining sexual dimorphism in frog measurement data: integration of statistical significance, measurement error, effect size and biological significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hayek Lee-Ann C.

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Several analytic techniques have been used to determine sexual dimorphism in vertebrate morphological measurement data with no emergent consensus on which technique is superior. A further confounding problem for frog data is the existence of considerable measurement error. To determine dimorphism, we examine a single hypothesis (Ho = equal means for two groups (females and males. We demonstrate that frog measurement data meet assumptions for clearly defined statistical hypothesis testing with statistical linear models rather than those of exploratory multivariate techniques such as principal components, correlation or correspondence analysis. In order to distinguish biological from statistical significance of hypotheses, we propose a new protocol that incorporates measurement error and effect size. Measurement error is evaluated with a novel measurement error index. Effect size, widely used in the behavioral sciences and in meta-analysis studies in biology, proves to be the most useful single metric to evaluate whether statistically significant results are biologically meaningful. Definitions for a range of small, medium, and large effect sizes specifically for frog measurement data are provided. Examples with measurement data for species of the frog genus Leptodactylus are presented. The new protocol is recommended not only to evaluate sexual dimorphism for frog data but for any animal measurement data for which the measurement error index and observed or a priori effect sizes can be calculated.

  19. Biological Based Risk Assessment for Space Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cucinotta, Francis A.

    2011-01-01

    Exposures from galactic cosmic rays (GCR) - made up of high-energy protons and high-energy and charge (HZE) nuclei, and solar particle events (SPEs) - comprised largely of low- to medium-energy protons are the primary health concern for astronauts for long-term space missions. Experimental studies have shown that HZE nuclei produce both qualitative and quantitative differences in biological effects compared to terrestrial radiation, making risk assessments for cancer and degenerative risks, such as central nervous system effects and heart disease, highly uncertain. The goal for space radiation protection at NASA is to be able to reduce the uncertainties in risk assessments for Mars exploration to be small enough to ensure acceptable levels of risks are not exceeded and to adequately assess the efficacy of mitigation measures such as shielding or biological countermeasures. We review the recent BEIR VII and UNSCEAR-2006 models of cancer risks and their uncertainties. These models are shown to have an inherent 2-fold uncertainty as defined by ratio of the 95% percent confidence level to the mean projection, even before radiation quality is considered. In order to overcome the uncertainties in these models, new approaches to risk assessment are warranted. We consider new computational biology approaches to modeling cancer risks. A basic program of research that includes stochastic descriptions of the physics and chemistry of radiation tracks and biochemistry of metabolic pathways, to emerging biological understanding of cellular and tissue modifications leading to cancer is described.

  20. Clinical Significance: a Therapeutic Approach Topsychological Assessment in Treatment Planning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Afolabi Olusegun Emmanuel

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Psychological assessment has long been reported as a key component of clinical psychology. This paper examines the complexities surrounding the clinical significance of therapeutic approach to treatment planning. To achieve this objective, the paper searched and used the PsycINFO and PubMed databases and the reference sections of chapters and journal articles to analysed, 1 a strong basis for the usage of therapeutic approach to psychological assessment in treatment plans, 2 explained the conceptual meaning of clinical significant change in therapeutic assessment, 3 answered some of the questions regarding practicability and the clinical significance of therapeutic approach to treatment plans, particularly during or before treatment, 4 linked therapeutic assessment to change in clients’ clinical impression, functioning and therapeutic needs 5 analysed the empirically documenting clinically significant change in therapeutic assessment. Finally, the study suggested that though therapeutic assessment is not sufficient for the systematic study of psychotherapy outcome and process, it is still consistent with both the layman and professional expectations regarding treatment outcome and also provides a precise method for classifying clients as ‘changed’ or ‘unchanged’ on the basis of clinical significance criteria.

  1. Caveats for using statistical significance tests in research assessments

    CERN Document Server

    Schneider, Jesper W

    2011-01-01

    This paper raises concerns about the advantages of using statistical significance tests in research assessments as has recently been suggested in the debate about proper normalization procedures for citation indicators. Statistical significance tests are highly controversial and numerous criticisms have been leveled against their use. Based on examples from articles by proponents of the use statistical significance tests in research assessments, we address some of the numerous problems with such tests. The issues specifically discussed are the ritual practice of such tests, their dichotomous application in decision making, the difference between statistical and substantive significance, the implausibility of most null hypotheses, the crucial assumption of randomness, as well as the utility of standard errors and confidence intervals for inferential purposes. We argue that applying statistical significance tests and mechanically adhering to their results is highly problematic and detrimental to critical thinki...

  2. Caveats for using statistical significance tests in research assessments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schneider, Jesper Wiborg

    2013-01-01

    This article raises concerns about the advantages of using statistical significance tests in research assessments as has recently been suggested in the debate about proper normalization procedures for citation indicators by Opthof and Leydesdorff (2010). Statistical significance tests are highly ...... are important or not. On the contrary their use may be harmful. Like many other critics, we generally believe that statistical significance tests are over- and misused in the empirical sciences including scientometrics and we encourage a reform on these matters.......This article raises concerns about the advantages of using statistical significance tests in research assessments as has recently been suggested in the debate about proper normalization procedures for citation indicators by Opthof and Leydesdorff (2010). Statistical significance tests are highly...... controversial and numerous criticisms have been leveled against their use. Based on examples from articles by proponents of the use statistical significance tests in research assessments, we address some of the numerous problems with such tests. The issues specifically discussed are the ritual practice...

  3. Independent component analysis reveals new and biologically significant structures in micro array data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Veerla Srinivas

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background An alternative to standard approaches to uncover biologically meaningful structures in micro array data is to treat the data as a blind source separation (BSS problem. BSS attempts to separate a mixture of signals into their different sources and refers to the problem of recovering signals from several observed linear mixtures. In the context of micro array data, "sources" may correspond to specific cellular responses or to co-regulated genes. Results We applied independent component analysis (ICA to three different microarray data sets; two tumor data sets and one time series experiment. To obtain reliable components we used iterated ICA to estimate component centrotypes. We found that many of the low ranking components indeed may show a strong biological coherence and hence be of biological significance. Generally ICA achieved a higher resolution when compared with results based on correlated expression and a larger number of gene clusters with significantly enriched for gene ontology (GO categories. In addition, components characteristic for molecular subtypes and for tumors with specific chromosomal translocations were identified. ICA also identified more than one gene clusters significant for the same GO categories and hence disclosed a higher level of biological heterogeneity, even within coherent groups of genes. Conclusion Although the ICA approach primarily detects hidden variables, these surfaced as highly correlated genes in time series data and in one instance in the tumor data. This further strengthens the biological relevance of latent variables detected by ICA.

  4. Significance and challenges of stereoselectivity assessing methods in drug metabolism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhuowei Shen

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Stereoselectivity in drug metabolism can not only influence the pharmacological activities, tolerability, safety, and bioavailability of drugs directly, but also cause different kinds of drug–drug interactions. Thus, assessing stereoselectivity in drug metabolism is of great significance for pharmaceutical research and development (R&D and rational use in clinic. Although there are various methods available for assessing stereoselectivity in drug metabolism, many of them have shortcomings. The indirect method of chromatographic methods can only be applicable to specific samples with functional groups to be derivatized or form complex with a chiral selector, while the direct method achieved by chiral stationary phases (CSPs is expensive. As a detector of chromatographic methods, mass spectrometry (MS is highly sensitive and specific, whereas the matrix interference is still a challenge to overcome. In addition, the use of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR and immunoassay in chiral analysis are worth noting. This review presents several typical examples of drug stereoselective metabolism and provides a literature-based evaluation on current chiral analytical techniques to show the significance and challenges of stereoselectivity assessing methods in drug metabolism.

  5. Periodic Table Target: A Game that Introduces the Biological Significance of Chemical Element Periodicity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sevcik, Richard S.; McGinty, Ragan L.; Schultz, Linda D.; Alexander, Susan V.

    2008-01-01

    Periodic Table Target, a game for middle school or high school students, familiarizes students with the form of the periodic table and the biological significance of different elements. The Periodic Table Target game board is constructed as a class project, and the game is played to reinforce the content. Students are assigned several elements…

  6. Biological significance of sperm whale responses to sonar: Comparison with anti-predator responses

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Curé, C.; Isojunno, S.; Visser, F.; Wensveen, P.J.; Sivle, L.D.; Kvadsheim, P.H.; Lam, F.A.; Miller, P.J.O.

    2016-01-01

    A key issue when investigating effects of anthropogenic noise on cetacean behavior is to identify the biological significance of the responses. Predator presence can be considered a natural high-level disturbance stimulus to which prey animals have evolved adaptive response strategies to reduce

  7. The molecular biology capstone assessment: a concept assessment for upper-division molecular biology students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couch, Brian A; Wood, William B; Knight, Jennifer K

    2015-03-02

    Measuring students' conceptual understandings has become increasingly important to biology faculty members involved in evaluating and improving departmental programs. We developed the Molecular Biology Capstone Assessment (MBCA) to gauge comprehension of fundamental concepts in molecular and cell biology and the ability to apply these concepts in novel scenarios. Targeted at graduating students, the MBCA consists of 18 multiple-true/false (T/F) questions. Each question consists of a narrative stem followed by four T/F statements, which allows a more detailed assessment of student understanding than the traditional multiple-choice format. Questions were iteratively developed with extensive faculty and student feedback, including validation through faculty reviews and response validation through student interviews. The final assessment was taken online by 504 students in upper-division courses at seven institutions. Data from this administration indicate that the MBCA has acceptable levels of internal reliability (α=0.80) and test-retest stability (r=0.93). Students achieved a wide range of scores with a 67% overall average. Performance results suggest that students have an incomplete understanding of many molecular biology concepts and continue to hold incorrect conceptions previously documented among introductory-level students. By pinpointing areas of conceptual difficulty, the MBCA can provide faculty members with guidance for improving undergraduate biology programs. © 2015 B. A. Couch et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2015 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  8. Systematical detection of significant genes in microarray data by incorporating gene interaction relationship in biological systems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junwei Wang

    Full Text Available Many methods, including parametric, nonparametric, and Bayesian methods, have been used for detecting differentially expressed genes based on the assumption that biological systems are linear, which ignores the nonlinear characteristics of most biological systems. More importantly, those methods do not simultaneously consider means, variances, and high moments, resulting in relatively high false positive rate. To overcome the limitations, the SWang test is proposed to determine differentially expressed genes according to the equality of distributions between case and control. Our method not only latently incorporates functional relationships among genes to consider nonlinear biological system but also considers the mean, variance, skewness, and kurtosis of expression profiles simultaneously. To illustrate biological significance of high moments, we construct a nonlinear gene interaction model, demonstrating that skewness and kurtosis could contain useful information of function association among genes in microarrays. Simulations and real microarray results show that false positive rate of SWang is lower than currently popular methods (T-test, F-test, SAM, and Fold-change with much higher statistical power. Additionally, SWang can uniquely detect significant genes in real microarray data with imperceptible differential expression but higher variety in kurtosis and skewness. Those identified genes were confirmed with previous published literature or RT-PCR experiments performed in our lab.

  9. Significance assessment of small-medium sized reactors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kanno, Minoru [Japan Atomic Power Co., Research and Development Dept., Tokyo (Japan)

    2002-12-01

    Preliminary assessment for deployment of small-medium sized reactor (S and M reactor) as a future option has been conducted at the JAPCO (Japan Atomic Power Company) under the cooperation with the CRIERI (Central Research Institute of Electric Power Industry). Significance of the S and M reactor introduction is listed as follows; lower investment cost, possible siting near demand side, enlarged freedom of siting, shorter transmission line, good compatibility with slow increase of demand and plain explanation of safety using simpler system such as integral type vessel without piping, natural convection core cooling and passive safety system. The deployment of simpler plant system, modular shop fabrication, ship-shell structured building and longer operation period can assure economics comparable with that of a large sized reactor, coping with scale-demerit. Also the S and M reactor is preferable in size for the nuclear heat utilization such as hydrogen production. (T. Tanaka)

  10. Fluctuations observed in biological time series signals and their functional significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamoto, M

    1991-01-01

    Fluctuation phenomena in a single neuronal spike train of a cat were investigated during sleep states. Although white-noise-like fluctuations were observed during non-REM sleep, they became 1/f fluctuations during REM sleep. REM sleep is regarded as a reversion to a state of the fetal brain. The functional significance of 1/f fluctuations in biological time series signals is discussed from the viewpoint of homeostasis.

  11. Significance of stromal-1 and stromal-2 signatures and biologic prognostic model in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdou, Asmaa Gaber; Asaad, Nancy; Kandil, Mona; Shabaan, Mohammed; Shams, Asmaa

    2017-01-01

    Objective : Diffuse Large B Cell Lymphoma (DLBCL) is a heterogeneous group of tumors with different biological and clinical characteristics that have diverse clinical outcomes and response to therapy. Stromal-1 signature of tumor microenvironment of DLBCL represents extracellular matrix deposition and histiocytic infiltrate, whereas stromal-2 represents angiogenesis that could affect tumor progression. Methods : The aim of the present study is to assess the significance of stromal-1 signature using SPARC-1 and stromal-2 signature using CD31 expression and then finally to construct biologic prognostic model (BPM) in 60 cases of DLBCL via immunohistochemistry. Results : Microvessel density (PBPM showed that 42 cases (70%) were of low biologic score (0–1) and 18 cases (30%) were of high biologic score (2–3). Low BPM cases showed less probability for splenic involvement (P=0.04) and a higher rate of complete response to therapy compared with high score cases (P=0.08). Conclusions : The DLBCL microenvironment could modulate tumor progression behavior since angiogenesis and SPARC positive stromal cells promote dissemination by association with spleen involvement and capsular invasion. Biologic prognostic models, including modified BPM, which considered cell origin of DLBCL and stromal signature pathways, could determine DLBCL progression and response to therapy. PMID:28607806

  12. The significance of social network in a geriatric assessment population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keller, Brenda K; Magnuson, Thomas M; Cernin, Paul A; Stoner, Julie A; Potter, Jane F

    2003-12-01

    There has long been speculation that socially-involved individuals suffer less illness, overcome sickness more readily, and experience better health outcomes than more socially isolated persons. This study describes social network characteristics, and determines whether social network affects health outcomes in the geriatric population. Data from 1270 consecutive patients seen in the outpatient Geriatric Assessment Clinic (GAC) of the University of Nebraska Medical Center between August 1988 and May 1999 were analyzed. Social network was measured by the Social Network Index (SNI). Younger age, higher income and higher education were related to a broader social network. A larger social network was generally associated with lower caregiver burden, higher functional status and better cognition. Men with the smallest social networks were found to be at significantly higher risk of death than women with larger social networks (HR 4). After adjusting for age (HR 1.04, CI 1.03-1.06), income (HR 1.00, CI 1-1), education (HR, NS), IADL (HR 0.97, CI 0.95-0.99), CIRS (HR 1.08, CI 1.05-1.10) and informal service use (HR, NS), the risk of death for subjects based on SNI is only significant in the comparison between SNI III and SNI I (HR 0.67, CI 0.50-0.91). SNI I males are at significantly increased risk of death compared with all other groups. The average number of years from initial visit to death for SNI I males is only 2.8 years. These results are consistent with the literature, which suggests men are more affected by social isolation and have decreased survival compared with females. The influence of SNI on mortality in this frail, elderly group appears to be diluted by the presence of functional disability and a high degree of comorbid illness.

  13. Possible biological significance of contaminated sediments in Port Jackson, Sydney, Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birch, Gavin; Taylor, Stuart

    2002-07-01

    Comprehensive investigations of estuaries in central New South Wales has identified Port Jackson as the most contaminated waterway on the eastern seaboard of Australia. Extensive areas of the estuary are mantled in sediment containing high concentrations of a large range of metallic and organic contaminants. Although extensive, this database does not provide an effective basis for determining the potential adverse effects of chemicals on living resources. In the absence of any ecotoxicological information, the recently published (1999) draft Australian and New Zealand Environmental and Conservation Council (ANZECC) sediment quality guidelines have been used to assess possible adverse biological effects of these toxicants. The ANZECC guidelines use the lower effects range of the widely used U. S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) scheme to identify potentially contaminated sediment and as a threshold to trigger for additional investigative work. This guideline level has been used in the current study to assess possible toxicity of contaminated sediments in Port Jackson. It is estimated that sediments in approximately 26% of the estuary, mainly the upper parts of the harbour and much of the central harbour, have a 67% probability of being toxic. Sediments in the central harbour and a major tributary, the Middle Harbour, comprising about 40% of the estuary, have a 13 to 25% probability of toxicity. All sediments in the harbour, except at the mouth of the estuary, would require additional environmental assessment based on the proposed draft ANZECC sediment quality guidelines.

  14. A Diagnostic Assessment for Introductory Molecular and Cell Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Jia; Wood, William B.; Martin, Jennifer M.; Guild, Nancy A.; Vicens, Quentin; Knight, Jennifer K.

    2010-01-01

    We have developed and validated a tool for assessing understanding of a selection of fundamental concepts and basic knowledge in undergraduate introductory molecular and cell biology, focusing on areas in which students often have misconceptions. This multiple-choice Introductory Molecular and Cell Biology Assessment (IMCA) instrument is designed…

  15. Correlating novel variable and conserved motifs in the Hemagglutinin protein with significant biological functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Werner Mark

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Variations in the influenza Hemagglutinin protein contributes to antigenic drift resulting in decreased efficiency of seasonal influenza vaccines and escape from host immune response. We performed an in silico study to determine characteristics of novel variable and conserved motifs in the Hemagglutinin protein from previously reported H3N2 strains isolated from Hong Kong from 1968–1999 to predict viral motifs involved in significant biological functions. Results 14 MEME blocks were generated and comparative analysis of the MEME blocks identified blocks 1, 2, 3 and 7 to correlate with several biological functions. Analysis of the different Hemagglutinin sequences elucidated that the single block 7 has the highest frequency of amino acid substitution and the highest number of co-mutating pairs. MEME 2 showed intermediate variability and MEME 1 was the most conserved. Interestingly, MEME blocks 2 and 7 had the highest incidence of potential post-translational modifications sites including phosphorylation sites, ASN glycosylation motifs and N-myristylation sites. Similarly, these 2 blocks overlap with previously identified antigenic sites and receptor binding sites. Conclusion Our study identifies motifs in the Hemagglutinin protein with different amino acid substitution frequencies over a 31 years period, and derives relevant functional characteristics by correlation of these motifs with potential post-translational modifications sites, antigenic and receptor binding sites.

  16. Human Permanent Ectoparasites; Recent Advances on Biology and Clinical Significance of Demodex Mites: Narrative Review Article

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorota LITWIN

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Background: Demodex is a genus of mites living predominantly in mammalian pilosebaceous units. They are commonly detected in the skin of face, with increasing numbers in inflammatory lesions. Causation between Demodex mites and inflammatory diseases, such as rosacea, blepharitis, perioral and seborrhoeic dermatitis or chalazion, is controversially discussed. Clinical observations indicate a primary form of human Demodex infection. The aim of this review was to highlight the biological aspects of Demodex infestation and point out directions for the future research.Methods: We conducted a broad review based on the electronic database sources such as MEDLINE, PubMed and Scopus with regard to the characteristics of the Demodex species, methods of examination and worldwide epidemiology, molecular studies and its role in the complex human ecosystem.Results: Demodex mites are organisms with a worldwide importance as they act in indicating several dermatoses, under certain conditions. However, correlations between Demodex and other parasites or microorganisms occupying one host, as well as interactions between these arachnids and its symbiotic bacteria should be considered. There are few methods of human mites' examination depending on purpose of the study. Nevertheless, paying attention must be needed as polymorphism of Demodex species has been reported.Conclusion: Overall, the present review will focus on different aspects of Demodex mites’ biology and significance of these arachnids in human’s health.

  17. Human Permanent Ectoparasites; Recent Advances on Biology and Clinical Significance of Demodex Mites: Narrative Review Article.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Litwin, Dorota; Chen, WenChieh; Dzika, Ewa; Korycińska, Joanna

    2017-01-01

    Demodex is a genus of mites living predominantly in mammalian pilosebaceous units. They are commonly detected in the skin of face, with increasing numbers in inflammatory lesions. Causation between Demodex mites and inflammatory diseases, such as rosacea, blepharitis, perioral and seborrhoeic dermatitis or chalazion, is controversially discussed. Clinical observations indicate a primary form of human Demodex infection. The aim of this review was to highlight the biological aspects of Demodex infestation and point out directions for the future research. We conducted a broad review based on the electronic database sources such as MEDLINE, PubMed and Scopus with regard to the characteristics of the Demodex species, methods of examination and worldwide epidemiology, molecular studies and its role in the complex human ecosystem. Demodex mites are organisms with a worldwide importance as they act in indicating several dermatoses, under certain conditions. However, correlations between Demodex and other parasites or microorganisms occupying one host, as well as interactions between these arachnids and its symbiotic bacteria should be considered. There are few methods of human mites' examination depending on purpose of the study. Nevertheless, paying attention must be needed as polymorphism of Demodex species has been reported. Overall, the present review will focus on different aspects of Demodex mites' biology and significance of these arachnids in human's health.

  18. Heterotypic Cellular Interactions in the Ovarian Tumor Microenvironment: Biological Significance and Therapeutic Implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Honami eNaora

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available The majority of women who are diagnosed with epithelial ovarian cancer present with extensive peritoneal carcinomatosis and are rarely cured by conventional chemotherapy. Ovarian cancer cells typically disseminate by shedding into the peritoneal fluid and implant on the mesothelium-lined peritoneal surfaces that overlie connective and white adipose tissues. Emerging evidence indicates that ovarian tumor progression is orchestrated by dynamic interplay between tumor cells and a variety of stromal cells such as adipocytes, endothelial cells, fibroblasts, mesenchymal stem cells, macrophages and other immune cells. This mini-review discusses the biological significance of the heterotypic cellular interactions in the ovarian tumor microenvironment and the therapeutic implications of targeting these interactions.

  19. Forenzic significance of composite restorations radiopacity: Assessment by dental students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barac Radomir

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In order to forensic use, dental materials should be sufficiently radiopaque to be detected against enamel/dentin, resulting in correct evaluation of restorations contours, detection of secondary caries, marginal defects, etc. Radiopacity of contemporary composites has been improved by inserting of filler-particles containing heavy metals: aluminum, barium, strontium, zirconium, ytterbium. Tetric composite group (Te-econom, Ceram, EvoCeram has the most suitable radiopacity; T-econom has highest radiopacity (4.78mm aluminum when exposure-0.6'. The aim of this study was to comparison of MOD composite restorations (T-Econom, Ivoclar, Vivadent radiographs in molar models and to assess their role in forensic identification, by dental students. Two sets of identical radiographs of molars models (that were previously filled with cement base and composite were made by standardized technique (exposure-time 0.2ms, amperage-10mA, voltage-70kV. One of the sets consists a few radiographs that did not have their pairs in the second set. Equality of composite restorations on the 'ante-mortem' and 'post-mortem' radiographs were assessed by dental students. Statistical analysis was performed using the kappa test. Results showed (k.t.=0.82 that there is a high correlation of correct answers although estimates are made by students who have no experience in forensic identification and forensic evidence, neither enough knowledge in dental radiology. Although the forensic identification should not be based only on the appearance of the one restoration, or the assessment of non-professional forensic scientists, this study indicates that radiopacity of composites may have a major forensic importance, because 'ante-mortem' and 'post-mortem' radiographs were showed exactly match certain morphological characteristics of composite restorations.

  20. Randomization techniques for assessing the significance of gene periodicity results

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vuokko Niko

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Modern high-throughput measurement technologies such as DNA microarrays and next generation sequencers produce extensive datasets. With large datasets the emphasis has been moving from traditional statistical tests to new data mining methods that are capable of detecting complex patterns, such as clusters, regulatory networks, or time series periodicity. Study of periodic gene expression is an interesting research question that also is a good example of challenges involved in the analysis of high-throughput data in general. Unlike for classical statistical tests, the distribution of test statistic for data mining methods cannot be derived analytically. Results We describe the randomization based approach to significance testing, and show how it can be applied to detect periodically expressed genes. We present four randomization methods, three of which have previously been used for gene cycle data. We propose a new method for testing significance of periodicity in gene expression short time series data, such as from gene cycle and circadian clock studies. We argue that the underlying assumptions behind existing significance testing approaches are problematic and some of them unrealistic. We analyze the theoretical properties of the existing and proposed methods, showing how our method can be robustly used to detect genes with exceptionally high periodicity. We also demonstrate the large differences in the number of significant results depending on the chosen randomization methods and parameters of the testing framework. By reanalyzing gene cycle data from various sources, we show how previous estimates on the number of gene cycle controlled genes are not supported by the data. Our randomization approach combined with widely adopted Benjamini-Hochberg multiple testing method yields better predictive power and produces more accurate null distributions than previous methods. Conclusions Existing methods for testing significance

  1. The significance of structural power in Strategic Environmental Assessment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Anne Merrild; Kørnøv, Lone; Cashmore, Matthew Asa

    2013-01-01

    This article presents a study of how power dynamics enables and constrains the influence of actors upon decision-making and Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA). Based on Anthony Giddens structuration theory (ST), a model for studying power dynamics in strategic decision-making processes......, that actors influence both outcome and frames for strategic decision making and attention needs to be on not only the formal interactions between SEA process and strategic decision-making process but also on informal interaction and communication between actors. The informal structures shows crucial...... to the outcome of the decision-making process. The article is meant as a supplement to the understanding of power dynamics influence in IA processes emphasising the capacity of agents to mobilise and create change. Despite epistemological challenges of using ST theory as an approach to power analysis, this meta...

  2. Significance of rat mammary tumors for human risk assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russo, Jose

    2015-02-01

    We have previously indicated that the ideal animal tumor model should mimic the human disease. This means that the investigator should be able to ascertain the influence of host factors on the initiation of tumorigenesis, mimic the susceptibility of tumor response based on age and reproductive history, and determine the response of the tumors induced to chemotherapy. The utilization of experimental models of mammary carcinogenesis in risk assessment requires that the influence of ovarian, pituitary, and placental hormones, among others, as well as overall reproductive events are taken into consideration, since they are important modifiers of the susceptibility of the organ to neoplastic development. Several species, such as rodents, dogs, cats, and monkeys, have been evaluated for these purposes; however, none of them fulfills all the criteria specified previously. Rodents, however, are the most widely used models; therefore, this work will concentrate on discussing the rat rodent model of mammary carcinogenesis. © 2014 by The Author(s).

  3. Mathematical modeling in biology: A critical assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Buiatti, M. [Florence, Univ. (Italy). Dipt. di Biologia Animale e Genetica

    1998-01-01

    The molecular revolution and the development of biology-derived industry have led in the last fifty years to an unprecedented `lead forward` of life sciences in terms of experimental data. Less success has been achieved in the organisation of such data and in the consequent development of adequate explanatory and predictive theories and models. After a brief historical excursus inborn difficulties of mathematisation of biological objects and processes derived from the complex dynamics of life are discussed along with the logical tools (simplifications, choice of observation points etc.) used to overcome them. `Autistic`, monodisciplinary attitudes towards biological modeling of mathematicians, physicists, biologists aimed in each case at the use of the tools of other disciplines to solve `selfish` problems are also taken into account and a warning against derived dangers (reification of mono disciplinary metaphors, lack of falsification etc.) is given. Finally `top.down` (deductive) and `bottom up` (inductive) heuristic interactive approaches to mathematisation are critically discussed with the help of serie of examples.

  4. On detection and assessment of statistical significance of Genomic Islands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chaudhuri Probal

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Many of the available methods for detecting Genomic Islands (GIs in prokaryotic genomes use markers such as transposons, proximal tRNAs, flanking repeats etc., or they use other supervised techniques requiring training datasets. Most of these methods are primarily based on the biases in GC content or codon and amino acid usage of the islands. However, these methods either do not use any formal statistical test of significance or use statistical tests for which the critical values and the P-values are not adequately justified. We propose a method, which is unsupervised in nature and uses Monte-Carlo statistical tests based on randomly selected segments of a chromosome. Such tests are supported by precise statistical distribution theory, and consequently, the resulting P-values are quite reliable for making the decision. Results Our algorithm (named Design-Island, an acronym for Detection of Statistically Significant Genomic Island runs in two phases. Some 'putative GIs' are identified in the first phase, and those are refined into smaller segments containing horizontally acquired genes in the refinement phase. This method is applied to Salmonella typhi CT18 genome leading to the discovery of several new pathogenicity, antibiotic resistance and metabolic islands that were missed by earlier methods. Many of these islands contain mobile genetic elements like phage-mediated genes, transposons, integrase and IS elements confirming their horizontal acquirement. Conclusion The proposed method is based on statistical tests supported by precise distribution theory and reliable P-values along with a technique for visualizing statistically significant islands. The performance of our method is better than many other well known methods in terms of their sensitivity and accuracy, and in terms of specificity, it is comparable to other methods.

  5. Assessing significance in a Markov chain without mixing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chikina, Maria; Frieze, Alan; Pegden, Wesley

    2017-03-14

    We present a statistical test to detect that a presented state of a reversible Markov chain was not chosen from a stationary distribution. In particular, given a value function for the states of the Markov chain, we would like to show rigorously that the presented state is an outlier with respect to the values, by establishing a [Formula: see text] value under the null hypothesis that it was chosen from a stationary distribution of the chain. A simple heuristic used in practice is to sample ranks of states from long random trajectories on the Markov chain and compare these with the rank of the presented state; if the presented state is a [Formula: see text] outlier compared with the sampled ranks (its rank is in the bottom [Formula: see text] of sampled ranks), then this observation should correspond to a [Formula: see text] value of [Formula: see text] This significance is not rigorous, however, without good bounds on the mixing time of the Markov chain. Our test is the following: Given the presented state in the Markov chain, take a random walk from the presented state for any number of steps. We prove that observing that the presented state is an [Formula: see text]-outlier on the walk is significant at [Formula: see text] under the null hypothesis that the state was chosen from a stationary distribution. We assume nothing about the Markov chain beyond reversibility and show that significance at [Formula: see text] is best possible in general. We illustrate the use of our test with a potential application to the rigorous detection of gerrymandering in Congressional districting.

  6. Melatonin Distribution Reveals Clues to Its Biological Significance in Basal Metazoans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roopin, Modi; Levy, Oren

    2012-01-01

    Although nearly ubiquitous in nature, the precise biological significance of endogenous melatonin is poorly understood in phylogenetically basal taxa. In the present work, we describe insights into the functional role of melatonin at the most “basal” level of metazoan evolution. Hitherto unknown morphological determinants of melatonin distribution were evaluated in Nematostella vectensis by detecting melatonin immunoreactivity and examining the spatial gene expression patterns of putative melatonin biosynthetic and receptor elements that are located at opposing ends of the melatonin signaling pathway. Immuno-melatonin profiling indicated an elaborate interaction with reproductive tissues, reinforcing previous conjectures of a melatonin-responsive component in anthozoan reproduction. In situ hybridization (ISH) to putative melatonin receptor elements highlighted the possibility that the bioregulatory effects of melatonin in anthozoan reproduction may be mediated by interactions with membrane receptors, as in higher vertebrates. Another intriguing finding of the present study pertains to the prevalence of melatonin in centralized nervous structures. This pattern may be of great significance given that it 1) identifies an ancestral association between melatonin and key neuronal components and 2) potentially implies that certain effects of melatonin in basal species may be spread widely by regionalized nerve centers. PMID:23300630

  7. Biological significance of HLA locus matching in unrelated donor bone marrow transplantation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kashiwase, Koichi; Matsuo, Keitaro; Azuma, Fumihiro; Morishima, Satoko; Onizuka, Makoto; Yabe, Toshio; Murata, Makoto; Doki, Noriko; Eto, Tetsuya; Mori, Takehiko; Miyamura, Koichi; Sao, Hiroshi; Ichinohe, Tatsuo; Saji, Hiroo; Kato, Shunichi; Atsuta, Yoshiko; Kawa, Keisei; Kodera, Yoshihisa; Sasazuki, Takehiko

    2015-01-01

    We hypothesized that the compatibility of each HLA loci between donor and patient induced divergent transplant-related immunologic responses, which attributed to the individualized manifestation of clinical outcomes. Here, we analyzed 7898 Japanese pairs transplanted with T-cell–replete marrow from an unrelated donor with complete HLA allele typing data. Multivariable competing risk regression analyses were conducted to evaluate the relative risk (RR) of clinical outcomes after transplantation. A significant RR of HLA allele mismatch compared with match was seen with HLA-A, -B, -C, and -DPB1 for grade III-IV acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), and HLA-C for chronic GVHD. Of note, only HLA-C and HLA-DPB1 mismatch reduced leukemia relapse, and this graft-versus-leukemia effect of HLA-DPB1 was independent of chronic GVHD. HLA-DRB1 and HLA-DQB1 double (DRB1_DQB1) mismatch was revealed to be a significant RR for acute GVHD and mortality, whereas single mismatch was not. Thus, the number of HLA-A, -B, -C, -DPB1, and DRB1_DQB1 mismatches showed a clear-cut risk difference for acute GVHD, whereas the number of mismatches for HLA-A, -B, -C, and DRB1_DQB1 showed the same for mortality. In conclusion, we determined the biological response to HLA locus mismatch in transplant-related immunologic events, and provide a rationale for use of a personalized algorithm for unrelated donor selection. PMID:25519752

  8. LEFT ATRIAL FUNCTION: MODERN ASSESSMENT METHODS AND CLINICAL SIGNIFICANCE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. N. Pavlyukova

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Assessment of the left atrial (LA function is important aspect of comprehensive cardiovascular system estimation. Many cardiac diseases make an impact to LA work either by direct affect on myocardium or hemodynamic condition changing. It is considered, LA and left ventricle diastolic pressure is interrelated, thus without mitral valve disease LA expanding is a sign of LV filling pressure augmentation. Examination of LA size and function by analysis of atrial reservoir, conduit, and booster pump can predict cardiovascular outcomes in patients with cardiomyopathy, ischemic heart disease and valvular heart disease. The last two decades gave new technologies to accurate and comprehensive LA mechanics estimation, in the first place related to tissue Doppler imaging. Atrial strain and strain rate obtained using two-dimensional speckle-tracking echocardiography have proved to be feasible and reproducible techniques to evaluate LA mechanics.In physiological settings, LA is a highly expandable chamber with relatively low pressures. However in the presence of acute and chronic injury, LA wall stretches. LA stretching is a hallmark of structure changing with myocardial fibrosis and has influence on LA strain and strain rate. LA strain estimation could be useful in the prediction of sinus rhythm restoration and maintenance after cardioversion and catheter ablation. Low values of global longitudinal LA strain indicate irreversible LA remodeling and are related to the atrial fibrillation progression from paroxysmal to permanent forms. The most interesting in these circumstances is the potential contribution of echocardiography to thromboembolic risk stratification in atrial fibrillation and invasive procedures such as atrial ablation. Therefore, at present, the main task is to understand the ways of clinical application of data  obtained during the LA study.

  9. Phospholipids in Milk Fat: Composition, Biological and Technological Significance, and Analytical Strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giovanna Contarini

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Glycerophospholipids and sphingolipids are quantitatively the most important phospholipids (PLs in milk. They are located on the milk fat globule membrane (MFGM and in other membranous material of the skim milk phase. They include principally phosphatidylcholine, phosphatidylethanolamine, phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidylserine, while sphingomyelin is the dominant species of sphingolipids There is considerable evidence that PLs have beneficial health effects, such as regulation of the inflammatory reactions, chemopreventive and chemotherapeutic activity on some types of cancer, and inhibition of the cholesterol absorption. PLs show good emulsifying properties and can be used as a delivery system for liposoluble constituents. Due to the amphiphilic characteristics of these molecules, their extraction, separation and detection are critical points in the analytical approach. The extraction by using chloroform and methanol, followed by the determination by high pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC, coupled with evaporative light scattering (ELSD or mass detector (MS, are the most applied procedures for the PL evaluation. More recently, nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometry (NMR was also used, but despite it demonstrating high sensitivity, it requires more studies to obtain accurate results. This review is focused on milk fat phospholipids; their composition, biological activity, technological properties, and significance in the structure of milk fat. Different analytical methodologies are also discussed.

  10. The biological significance and clinical applications of exosomes in ovarian cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorayappan, Kalpana Deepa Priya; Wallbillich, John J; Cohn, David E; Selvendiran, Karuppaiyah

    2016-07-01

    Exosomes are nano-sized (20-100nm) vesicles released by a variety of cells and are generated within the endosomal system or at the plasma membrane. There is emerging evidence that exosomes play a key role in intercellular communication in ovarian and other cancers. The protein and microRNA content of exosomes has been implicated in various intracellular processes that mediate oncogenesis, tumor spread, and drug resistance. Exosomes may prime distant tissue sites for reception of future metastases and their release can be mediated by the tumor microenvironment (e.g., hypoxia). Ovarian cancer-derived exosomes have unique features that could be leveraged for use as biomarkers to facilitate improved detection and treatment of the disease. Further, exosomes have the potential to serve as targets and/or drug delivery vehicles in the treatment of ovarian cancer. In this review we discuss the biological and clinical significance of exosomes relevant to the progression, detection, and treatment of ovarian cancer. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Isolation of a significant fraction of non-phototroph diversity from a desert Biological Soil Crust

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    Ulisses eNunes da Rocha

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Biological Soil Crusts (BSCs are organosedimentary assemblages comprised of microbes and minerals in topsoil of terrestrial environments. BSCs strongly impact soil quality in dryland ecosystems (e.g., soil structure and nutrient yields due to pioneer species such as Microcoleus vaginatus; phototrophs that produce filaments that bind the soil together, and support an array of heterotrophic microorganisms. These microorganisms in turn contribute to soil stability and biogeochemistry of BSCs. Non-cyanobacterial populations of BSCs are less well known than cyanobacterial populations. Therefore, we attempted to isolate a broad range of numerically significant and phylogenetically representative BSC aerobic heterotrophs. Combining simple pre-treatments (hydration of BSCs under dark and light and isolation strategies (media with varying nutrient availability and protection from oxidative stress we recovered 402 bacterial and one fungal isolate in axenic culture, which comprised 116 phylotypes (at 97% 16S rRNA gene sequence homology, 115 bacterial and one fungal. Each medium enriched a mostly distinct subset of phylotypes, and cultivated phylotypes varied due to the BSC pre-treatment. The fraction of the total phylotype diversity isolated, weighted by relative abundance in the community, was determined by the overlap between isolate sequences and OTUs reconstructed from metagenome or metatranscriptome reads. Together, more than 8% of relative abundance of OTUs in the metagenome was represented by our isolates, a cultivation efficiency much larger than typically expected from most soils. We conclude that simple cultivation procedures combined with specific pre-treatment of samples afford a significant reduction in the culturability gap, enabling physiological and metabolic assays that rely on ecologically relevant axenic cultures.

  12. Assessment of knowledge of participants on basic molecular biology techniques after 5-day intensive molecular biology training workshops in Nigeria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yisau, J I; Adagbada, A O; Bamidele, T; Fowora, M; Brai, B I C; Adebesin, O; Bamidele, M; Fesobi, T; Nwaokorie, F O; Ajayi, A; Smith, S I

    2017-07-08

    The deployment of molecular biology techniques for diagnosis and research in Nigeria is faced with a number of challenges, including the cost of equipment and reagents coupled with the dearth of personnel skilled in the procedures and handling of equipment. Short molecular biology training workshops were conducted at the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), to improve the knowledge and skills of laboratory personnel and academics in health, research, and educational facilities. Five-day molecular biology workshops were conducted annually between 2011 and 2014, with participants drawn from health, research facilities, and the academia. The courses consisted of theoretical and practical sessions. The impact of the workshops on knowledge and skill acquisition was evaluated by pre- and post-tests which consisted of 25 multiple choice and other questions. Sixty-five participants took part in the workshops. The mean knowledge of molecular biology as evaluated by the pre- and post-test assessments were 8.4 (95% CI 7.6-9.1) and 13.0 (95 CI 11.9-14.1), respectively. The mean post-test score was significantly greater than the mean pre-test score (p biology workshop significantly increased the knowledge and skills of participants in molecular biology techniques. © 2017 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 45(4):313-317, 2017. © 2017 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  13. Skeletal types: key to unraveling the mystery of facial beauty and its biologic significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jefferson, Y

    1996-06-01

    In random studies, some faces will deviate toward Type II skeletal and some toward Type III. Some will deviate toward a skeletally short vertical while some toward long. In their study, Langlois and Roggman digitized individual faces through a computer. As more and more faces were entered, the composite of these faces became more and more attractive. From this, they concluded that attractive faces are only average. The "average" face may very well conform to the divine proportion. However, some faces are strikingly beautiful, and Alley and Cunningham in their study attempted to explain these attributes. Individuals who are blessed with attractive features are treated differently in our society. Ackerman states, "Attractive people do better: in school, where they receive more help, better grades and less punishment; at work, where they are rewarded with higher pay, more prestigious jobs and faster promotions; in finding mates, where they tend to be in control of the relationship and make most of the decisions; and among strangers, who assume them to be more interesting, honest, virtuous and successful." Many would find this special treatment objectionable and unfair. The irony is that beautiful individuals make up a very small percentage of the population; they have very little power to dictate how society should act and behave. Various disciplines have studied the nature of facial beauty. Individually, they provide partial answers; however, when viewed together, they begin to weave provocative insights as to its biologic significance. It is intricately related to divine proportion, and all living creatures have the genetic potential to develop toward it. The appreciation for this proportion is primitive and inborn; it is a biologic mechanism by which all living creatures are attracted to potential mates who conform to this strict proportion because they are biologically strong, healthy, and fertile. To date, there is no other profession other than ours that has the

  14. Grays River Watershed and Biological Assessment Final Report 2006.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    May, Christopher W.; McGrath, Kathleen E.; Geist, David R. [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory; Abbe, Timothy; Barton, Chase [Herrera Environmental Consultants, Inc.

    2008-02-04

    The Grays River Watershed and Biological Assessment was funded to address degradation and loss of spawning habitat for chum salmon (Onchorhynchus keta) and fall Chinook salmon (Onchoryhnchus tshawytscha). In 1999, the National Marine Fisheries Service listed lower Columbia River chum salmon as a threatened Evolutionarily Significant Unit (ESU) under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA). The Grays River watershed is one of two remaining significant chum salmon spawning locations in this ESU. Runs of Grays River chum and Chinook salmon have declined significantly during the past century, largely because of damage to spawning habitat associated with timber harvest and agriculture in the watershed. In addition, approximately 20-25% of the then-remaining chum salmon spawning habitat was lost during a 1999 channel avulsion that destroyed an important artificial spawning channel operated by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW). Although the lack of stable, high-quality spawning habitat is considered the primary physical limitation on Grays River chum salmon production today, few data are available to guide watershed management and channel restoration activities. The objectives of the Grays River Watershed and Biological Assessment project were to (1) perform a comprehensive watershed and biological analysis, including hydrologic, geomorphic, and ecological assessments; (2) develop a prioritized list of actions that protect and restore critical chum and Chinook salmon spawning habitat in the Grays River based on comprehensive geomorphic, hydrologic, and stream channel assessments; and (3) gain a better understanding of chum and Chinook salmon habitat requirements and survival within the lower Columbia River and the Grays River. The watershed-based approach to river ecosystem restoration relies on a conceptual framework that describes general relationships between natural landscape characteristics, watershed-scale habitat-forming processes, aquatic

  15. Grays River Watershed and Biological Assessment, 2006 Final Report.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    May, Christopher; Geist, David [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

    2007-04-01

    The Grays River Watershed and Biological Assessment was funded to address degradation and loss of spawning habitat for chum salmon (Onchorhynchus keta) and fall Chinook salmon (Onchoryhnchus tshawytscha). In 1999, the National Marine Fisheries Service listed lower Columbia River chum salmon as a threatened Evolutionarily Significant Unit (ESU) under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA). The Grays River watershed is one of two remaining significant chum salmon spawning locations in this ESU. Runs of Grays River chum and Chinook salmon have declined significantly during the past century, largely because of damage to spawning habitat associated with timber harvest and agriculture in the watershed. In addition, approximately 20-25% of the then-remaining chum salmon spawning habitat was lost during a 1999 channel avulsion that destroyed an important artificial spawning channel operated by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW). Although the lack of stable, high-quality spawning habitat is considered the primary physical limitation on Grays River chum salmon production today, few data are available to guide watershed management and channel restoration activities. The objectives of the Grays River Watershed and Biological Assessment project were to (1) perform a comprehensive watershed and biological analysis, including hydrologic, geomorphic, and ecological assessments; (2) develop a prioritized list of actions that protect and restore critical chum and Chinook salmon spawning habitat in the Grays River based on comprehensive geomorphic, hydrologic, and stream channel assessments; and (3) gain a better understanding of chum and Chinook salmon habitat requirements and survival within the lower Columbia River and the Grays River. The watershed-based approach to river ecosystem restoration relies on a conceptual framework that describes general relationships between natural landscape characteristics, watershed-scale habitat-forming processes, aquatic

  16. About the significance of biological factors affecting pregnancy a married couple

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. V. Yarman

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available A brief review of the literature analysis of the importance and interdependence of the main factors influencing the occurrence of pregnancy as a pair in the treatment of infertility, such as the woman's age, ovarian reserve, the semen of a man and the duration of infertility. The review also presents the data concerning the practical implications of sexual constitution and sexual maturation in men and women in the pubertal period. When evaluating male fertility invariably significant factor in the prediction of pregnancy are, impregnating ability to ejaculate. Infertility is more common in males with delayed development in the pubertal period with a weak type of sexual constitution. Results of treatment of male infertility, the dynamics of the semen and pregnancy of the couple on the background of pathogenetic therapy correlates with the type of sexual constitution. Widely deployed discussion about the existence of the male equivalent of female menopause mainly concerns the problems of men's sexual health. Of exceptional importance for the prediction of treatment of infertility has ovarian reserve, which is closely associated with age women. Formation of menstrual function occurs in the pubertal period of sexual development, in this age of menarche is the leading symptom of type of sexual constitution of women that do not change throughout the life hereafter. The presence of menstrual function and even ovulation does not reflect the reproductive capacity of women. Insufficient information content of the chronological age of a woman, as an indicator of the reproductive capacity of ovarian dictates the necessity of the development of tests that determine individual biological age of a woman, perhaps connected with the type of sexual constitution. In this regard, the study of sexual constitution partners is of great scientific and practical interest.

  17. Endocannabinoid system as a regulator of tumor cell malignancy – biological pathways and clinical significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pyszniak M

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Maria Pyszniak,1–3 Jacek Tabarkiewicz,1,2 Jarogniew J Łuszczki4,5 1Centre for Innovative Research in Medical and Natural Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, 2Department of Immunology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Rzeszów, Rzeszów, 3Postgraduate School of Molecular Medicine, Medical University of Warsaw, Warszawa, 4Department of Pathophysiology, Medical University of Lublin, 5Isobolographic Analysis Laboratory, Institute of Agricultural Medicine, Lublin, Poland Abstract: The endocannabinoid system (ECS comprises cannabinoid receptors (CBs, endogenous cannabinoids, and enzymes responsible for their synthesis, transport, and degradation of (endocannabinoids. To date, two CBs, CB1 and CB2, have been characterized; however, orphan G-protein-coupled receptor GPR55 has been suggested to be the third putative CB. Several different types of cancer present abnormal expression of CBs, as well as other components of ECS, and this has been shown to correlate with the clinical outcome. Although most effects of (endocannabinoids are mediated through stimulation of classical CBs, they also interact with several molecules, either prosurvival or proapoptotic molecules. It should be noted that the mode of action of exogenous cannabinoids differs significantly from that of endocannabinoid and results from the studies on their activity both in vivo and in vitro could not be easily compared. This review highlights the main signaling pathways involved in the antitumor activity of cannabinoids and the influence of their activation on cancer cell biology. We also discuss changes in the expression pattern of the ECS in various cancer types that have an impact on disease progression and patient survival. A growing amount of experimental data imply possible exploitation of cannabinoids in cancer therapy. Keywords: cannabinoids, cancer, cell signaling, cannabinoid receptor, delta-9-tetrahy­drocannabinol

  18. A unique nickel system having versatile catalytic activity of biological significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chattopadhyay, Tanmay; Mukherjee, Madhuparna; Mondal, Arindam; Maiti, Pali; Banerjee, Arpita; Banu, Kazi Sabnam; Bhattacharya, Santanu; Roy, Bappaditya; Chattopadhyay, D J; Mondal, Tapan Kumar; Nethaji, Munirathinam; Zangrando, Ennio; Das, Debasis

    2010-04-05

    A new dinuclear nickel(II) complex, [Ni(2)(LH(2))(H(2)O)(2)(OH)(NO(3))](NO(3))(3) (1), of an "end-off" compartmental ligand 2,6-bis(N-ethylpiperazine-iminomethyl)-4-methyl-phenolato, has been synthesized and structurally characterized. The X-ray single crystal structure analysis shows that the piperazine moieties assume the expected chair conformation and are protonated. The complex 1 exhibits versatile catalytic activities of biological significance, viz. catecholase, phosphatase, and DNA cleavage activities, etc. The catecholase activity of the complex observed is very dependent on the nature of the solvent. In acetonitrile medium, the complex is inactive to exhibit catecholase activity. On the other hand, in methanol, it catalyzes not only the oxidation of 3,5-di-tert-butylcatechol (3,5-DTBC) but also tetrachlorocatechol (TCC), a catechol which is very difficult to oxidize, under aerobic conditions. UV-vis spectroscopic investigation shows that TCC oxidation proceeds through the formation of an intermediate. The intermediate has been characterized by an electron spray ionizaton-mass spectrometry study, which suggests a bidentate rather than a monodentate mode of TCC coordination in that intermediate, and this proposition have been verified by density functional theory calculation. The complex also exhibits phosphatase (with substrate p-nitrophenylphosphate) and DNA cleavage activities. The DNA cleavage activity exhibited by complex 1 most probably proceeds through a hydroxyl radical pathway. The bioactivity study suggests the possible applications of complex 1 as a site specific recognition of DNA and/or as an anticancer agent.

  19. The significance and scope of evolutionary developmental biology: a vision for the 21st century.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moczek, Armin P; Sears, Karen E; Stollewerk, Angelika; Wittkopp, Patricia J; Diggle, Pamela; Dworkin, Ian; Ledon-Rettig, Cristina; Matus, David Q; Roth, Siegfried; Abouheif, Ehab; Brown, Federico D; Chiu, Chi-Hua; Cohen, C Sarah; Tomaso, Anthony W De; Gilbert, Scott F; Hall, Brian; Love, Alan C; Lyons, Deirdre C; Sanger, Thomas J; Smith, Joel; Specht, Chelsea; Vallejo-Marin, Mario; Extavour, Cassandra G

    2015-01-01

    Evolutionary developmental biology (evo-devo) has undergone dramatic transformations since its emergence as a distinct discipline. This paper aims to highlight the scope, power, and future promise of evo-devo to transform and unify diverse aspects of biology. We articulate key questions at the core of eleven biological disciplines-from Evolution, Development, Paleontology, and Neurobiology to Cellular and Molecular Biology, Quantitative Genetics, Human Diseases, Ecology, Agriculture and Science Education, and lastly, Evolutionary Developmental Biology itself-and discuss why evo-devo is uniquely situated to substantially improve our ability to find meaningful answers to these fundamental questions. We posit that the tools, concepts, and ways of thinking developed by evo-devo have profound potential to advance, integrate, and unify biological sciences as well as inform policy decisions and illuminate science education. We look to the next generation of evolutionary developmental biologists to help shape this process as we confront the scientific challenges of the 21st century. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. William Astbury and the biological significance of nucleic acids, 1938-1951.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Kersten

    2011-06-01

    Famously, James Watson credited the discovery of the double-helical structure of DNA in 1953 to an X-ray diffraction photograph taken by Rosalind Franklin. Historians of molecular biology have long puzzled over a remarkably similar photograph taken two years earlier by the physicist and pioneer of protein structure William T. Astbury. They have suggested that Astbury's failure to capitalize on the photograph to solve DNA's structure was due either to his being too much of a physicist, with too little interest in or knowledge of biology, or to his being misled by an erroneous theoretical model of the gene. Drawing on previously unpublished archival sources, this paper offers a new analysis of Astbury's relationship to the problem of DNA's structure, emphasizing a previously overlooked element in Astbury's thinking: his concept of biological specificity. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Uncovering biologically significant lipid isomers with liquid chromatography, ion mobility spectrometry and mass spectrometry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kyle, Jennifer E.; Zhang, Xing; Weitz, Karl K.; Monroe, Matthew E.; Ibrahim, Yehia M.; Moore, Ronald J.; Cha, Jeeyeon; Sun, Xiaofei; Lovelace, Erica S.; Wagoner, Jessica; Polyak, Steve; Metz, Thomas O.; Dey, Sudhansu K.; Smith, Richard D.; Burnum-Johnson, Kristin E.; Baker, Erin Shammel

    2016-01-01

    Understanding how biological molecules are generated, metabolized and eliminated in living systems is important for interpreting processes such as immune response and disease pathology. While genomic and proteomic studies have provided vast amounts of information over the last several decades, interest in lipidomics has also grown due to improved analytical technologies revealing altered lipid metabolism in type 2 diabetes, cancer, and lipid storage disease. Liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry (LC-MS) measurements are currently the dominant approach for characterizing the lipidome by providing detailed information on the spatial and temporal composition of lipids. However, interpreting lipids’ biological roles is challenging due to the existence of numerous structural and stereoisomers (i.e. distinct acyl chain and double-bond positions), which are unresolvable using present LC-MS approaches. Here we show that combining structurally-based ion mobility spectrometry (IMS) with LC-MS measurements distinguishes lipid isomers and allows insight into biological and disease processes.

  2. Uncovering Biologically Significant Lipid Isomers with Liquid Chromatography, Ion Mobility Spectrometry and Mass Spectrometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kyle, Jennifer E.; Zhang, Xing; Weitz, Karl K.; Monroe, Matthew E.; Ibrahim, Yehia M.; Moore, Ronald J.; Cha, Jeeyeon; Sun, Xiaofei; Lovelace, Erica S.; Wagoner, Jessica; Polyak, Stephen J.; Metz, Thomas O.; Dey, Sudhansu K.; Smith, Richard D.; Burnum-Johnson, Kristin E.; Baker, Erin S.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding how biological molecules are generated, metabolized and eliminated in living systems is important for interpreting processes such as immune response and disease pathology. While genomic and proteomic studies have provided vast amounts of information over the last several decades, interest in lipidomics has also grown due to improved analytical technologies revealing altered lipid metabolism in type 2 diabetes, cancer, and lipid storage disease. Mass spectrometry (MS) measurements are currently the dominant approach for characterizing the lipidome by providing detailed information on the spatial and temporal composition of lipids. However, interpreting lipids’ biological roles is challenging due to the existence of numerous structural and stereoisomers (i.e. distinct acyl chain and double-bond positions), which are often unresolvable using present approaches. Here we show that combining liquid chromatography (LC) and structurally-based ion mobility spectrometry (IMS) measurement with MS analyses distinguishes lipid isomers and allows insight into biological and disease processes. PMID:26734689

  3. The Widespread Prevalence and Functional Significance of Silk-Like Structural Proteins in Metazoan Biological Materials.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carmel McDougall

    Full Text Available In nature, numerous mechanisms have evolved by which organisms fabricate biological structures with an impressive array of physical characteristics. Some examples of metazoan biological materials include the highly elastic byssal threads by which bivalves attach themselves to rocks, biomineralized structures that form the skeletons of various animals, and spider silks that are renowned for their exceptional strength and elasticity. The remarkable properties of silks, which are perhaps the best studied biological materials, are the result of the highly repetitive, modular, and biased amino acid composition of the proteins that compose them. Interestingly, similar levels of modularity/repetitiveness and similar bias in amino acid compositions have been reported in proteins that are components of structural materials in other organisms, however the exact nature and extent of this similarity, and its functional and evolutionary relevance, is unknown. Here, we investigate this similarity and use sequence features common to silks and other known structural proteins to develop a bioinformatics-based method to identify similar proteins from large-scale transcriptome and whole-genome datasets. We show that a large number of proteins identified using this method have roles in biological material formation throughout the animal kingdom. Despite the similarity in sequence characteristics, most of the silk-like structural proteins (SLSPs identified in this study appear to have evolved independently and are restricted to a particular animal lineage. Although the exact function of many of these SLSPs is unknown, the apparent independent evolution of proteins with similar sequence characteristics in divergent lineages suggests that these features are important for the assembly of biological materials. The identification of these characteristics enable the generation of testable hypotheses regarding the mechanisms by which these proteins assemble and direct the

  4. Student Assessment in Large-Enrollment Biology Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alonso, Manuel; Stella, Carlos; Galagovsky, Lydia

    2008-01-01

    Enrollments into first-year university biology courses may be very large, and therefore evaluating student learning can represent quite a challenge. In this article, we present our experience in assessing students by means of an assessment instrument called "Understand Before Choosing" (UBC). It has been used for six semesters, and its performance…

  5. Assessing Practical Laboratory Skills in Undergraduate Molecular Biology Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, Lynne; Koenders, Annette; Gynnild, Vidar

    2012-01-01

    This study explored a new strategy of assessing laboratory skills in a molecular biology course to improve: student effort in preparation for and participation in laboratory work; valid evaluation of learning outcomes; and students' employment prospects through provision of evidence of their skills. Previously, assessment was based on written…

  6. Biological significance of facilitated diffusion in protein-DNA interactions. Applications to T4 endonuclease V-initiated DNA repair

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dowd, D.R.; Lloyd, R.S. (Vanderbilt Univ. School of Medicine, Nashville, TN (USA))

    1990-02-25

    Facilitated diffusion along nontarget DNA is employed by numerous DNA-interactive proteins to locate specific targets. Until now, the biological significance of DNA scanning has remained elusive. T4 endonuclease V is a DNA repair enzyme which scans nontarget DNA and processively incises DNA at the site of pyrimidine dimers which are produced by exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light. In this study we tested the hypothesis that there exists a direct correlation between the degree of processivity of wild type and mutant endonuclease V molecules and the degree of enhanced UV resistance which is conferred to repair-deficient Eshcerichia coli. This was accomplished by first creating a series of endonuclease V mutants whose in vitro catalytic activities were shown to be very similar to that of the wild type enzyme. However, when the mechanisms by which these enzymes search nontarget DNA for its substrate were analyzed in vitro and in vivo, the mutants displayed varying degrees of nontarget DNA scanning ranging from being nearly as processive as wild type to randomly incising dimers within the DNA population. The ability of these altered endonuclease V molecules to enhance UV survival in DNA repair-deficient E. coli then was assessed. The degree of enhanced UV survival was directly correlated with the level of facilitated diffusion. This is the first conclusive evidence directly relating a reduction of in vivo facilitated diffusion with a change in an observed phenotype. These results support the assertion that the mechanisms which DNA-interactive proteins employ in locating their target sites are of biological significance.

  7. Biological significance of facilitated diffusion in protein-DNA interactions. Applications to T4 endonuclease V-initiated DNA repair.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dowd, D R; Lloyd, R S

    1990-02-25

    Facilitated diffusion along nontarget DNA is employed by numerous DNA-interactive proteins to locate specific targets. Until now, the biological significance of DNA scanning has remained elusive. T4 endonuclease V is a DNA repair enzyme which scans nontarget DNA and processively incises DNA at the site of pyrimidine dimers which are produced by exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light. In this study we tested the hypothesis that there exists a direct correlation between the degree of processivity of wild type and mutant endonuclease V molecules and the degree of enhanced UV resistance which is conferred to repair-deficient Eshcerichia coli. This was accomplished by first creating a series of endonuclease V mutants whose in vitro catalytic activities were shown to be very similar to that of the wild type enzyme. However, when the mechanisms by which these enzymes search nontarget DNA for its substrate were analyzed in vitro and in vivo, the mutants displayed varying degrees of nontarget DNA scanning ranging from being nearly as processive as wild type to randomly incising dimers within the DNA population. The ability of these altered endonuclease V molecules to enhance UV survival in DNA repair-deficient E. coli then was assessed. The degree of enhanced UV survival was directly correlated with the level of facilitated diffusion. This is the first conclusive evidence directly relating a reduction of in vivo facilitated diffusion with a change in an observed phenotype. These results support the assertion that the mechanisms which DNA-interactive proteins employ in locating their target sites are of biological significance.

  8. Dietary flavonoid aglycones and their glycosides: Which show better biological significance?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Jianbo

    2017-06-13

    The dietary flavonoids, especially their glycosides, are the most vital phytochemicals in diets and are of great general interest due to their diverse bioactivity. The natural flavonoids almost all exist as their O-glycoside or C-glycoside forms in plants. In this review, we summarized the existing knowledge on the different biological benefits and pharmacokinetic behaviors between flavonoid aglycones and their glycosides. Due to various conclusions from different flavonoid types and health/disease conditions, it is very difficult to draw general or universally applicable comments regarding the impact of glycosylation on the biological benefits of flavonoids. It seems as though O-glycosylation generally reduces the bioactivity of these compounds - this has been observed for diverse properties including antioxidant activity, antidiabetes activity, anti-inflammation activity, antibacterial, antifungal activity, antitumor activity, anticoagulant activity, antiplatelet activity, antidegranulating activity, antitrypanosomal activity, influenza virus neuraminidase inhibition, aldehyde oxidase inhibition, immunomodulatory, and antitubercular activity. However, O-glycosylation can enhance certain types of biological benefits including anti-HIV activity, tyrosinase inhibition, antirotavirus activity, antistress activity, antiobesity activity, anticholinesterase potential, antiadipogenic activity, and antiallergic activity. However, there is a lack of data for most flavonoids, and their structures vary widely. There is also a profound lack of data on the impact of C-glycosylation on flavonoid biological benefits, although it has been demonstrated that in at least some cases C-glycosylation has positive effects on properties that may be useful in human healthcare such as antioxidant and antidiabetes activity. Furthermore, there is a lack of in vivo data that would make it possible to make broad generalizations concerning the influence of glycosylation on the benefits of

  9. Biological methods used to assess surface water quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Szczerbiñska Natalia

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available In accordance with the guidelines of the Water Framework Directive 2000/60 (WFD, both ecological and chemical statuses determine the assessment of surface waters. The profile of ecological status is based on the analysis of various biological components, and physicochemical and hydromorphological indicators complement this assessment. The aim of this article is to present the biological methods used in the assessment of water status with a special focus on bioassay, as well as to provide a review of methods of monitoring water status. Biological test methods include both biomonitoring and bioanalytics. Water biomonitoring is used to assess and forecast the status of water. These studies aim to collect data on water pollution and forecast its impact. Biomonitoring uses organisms which are characterized by particular vulnerability to contaminants. Bioindicator organisms are algae, fungi, bacteria, larval invertebrates, cyanobacteria, macroinvertebrates, and fish. Bioanalytics is based on the receptors of contaminants that can be biologically active substances. In bioanalytics, biosensors such as viruses, bacteria, antibodies, enzymes, and biotests are used to assess degrees of pollution.

  10. The Halogenated Metabolism of Brown Algae (Phaeophyta, Its Biological Importance and Its Environmental Significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stéphane La Barre

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Brown algae represent a major component of littoral and sublittoral zones in temperate and subtropical ecosystems. An essential adaptive feature of this independent eukaryotic lineage is the ability to couple oxidative reactions resulting from exposure to sunlight and air with the halogenations of various substrates, thereby addressing various biotic and abiotic stresses i.e., defense against predators, tissue repair, holdfast adhesion, and protection against reactive species generated by oxidative processes. Whereas marine organisms mainly make use of bromine to increase the biological activity of secondary metabolites, some orders of brown algae such as Laminariales have also developed a striking capability to accumulate and to use iodine in physiological adaptations to stress. We review selected aspects of the halogenated metabolism of macrophytic brown algae in the light of the most recent results, which point toward novel functions for iodide accumulation in kelps and the importance of bromination in cell wall modifications and adhesion properties of brown algal propagules. The importance of halogen speciation processes ranges from microbiology to biogeochemistry, through enzymology, cellular biology and ecotoxicology.

  11. Significant Down-Regulation of “Biological Adhesion” Genes in Porcine Oocytes after IVM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanna Budna

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Proper maturation of the mammalian oocyte is a compound processes determining successful monospermic fertilization, however the number of fully mature porcine oocytes is still unsatisfactory. Since oocytes’ maturation and fertilization involve cellular adhesion and membranous contact, the aim was to investigate cell adhesion ontology group in porcine oocytes. The oocytes were collected from ovaries of 45 pubertal crossbred Landrace gilts and subjected to two BCB tests. After the first test, only granulosa cell-free BCB+ oocytes were directly exposed to microarray assays and RT-qPCR (“before IVM” group, or first in vitro matured and then if classified as BCB+ passed to molecular analyses (“after IVM” group. As a result, we have discovered substantial down-regulation of genes involved in adhesion processes, such as: organization of actin cytoskeleton, migration, proliferation, differentiation, apoptosis, survival or angiogenesis in porcine oocytes after IVM, compared to oocytes analyzed before IVM. In conclusion, we found that biological adhesion may be recognized as the process involved in porcine oocytes’ successful IVM. Down-regulation of genes included in this ontology group in immature oocytes after IVM points to their unique function in oocyte’s achievement of fully mature stages. Thus, results indicated new molecular markers involved in porcine oocyte IVM, displaying essential roles in biological adhesion processes.

  12. Biological significance of local TGF-β activation in liver diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiromitsu eHayashi

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available The cytokine transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β plays a pivotal role in a diverse range of cellular responses, including cell proliferation, apoptosis, differentiation, migration, adhesion, angiogenesis, stimulation of extracellular matrix (ECM synthesis, and downregulation of ECM degradation. TGF-β and its receptors are ubiquitously expressed by most cell types and tissues in vivo. In intact adult tissues and organs, TGF-β is secreted in a biologically inactive (latent form associated in a noncovalent complex with the ECM. In response to injury, local latent TGF-β complexes are converted into active TGF-β according to a tissue- and injury type-specific activation mechanism. Such a well and tightly orchestrated regulation in TGF-β activity enables an immediate, highly localized response to type-specific tissue injury. In the pathological process of liver fibrosis, TGF-β plays as a master pro-fibrogenic cytokine in promoting activation and myofibroblastic differentiation of hepatic stellate cells, a central event in liver fibrogenesis. Continuous and/or persistent TGF-β signaling induces sustained production of ECM components and of metalloproteinase synthesis. Therefore, the regulation of locally activated TGF-β levels is increasingly recognized as a therapeutic target for liver fibrogenesis. This review summarizes our present knowledge of the activation mechanisms and bioavailability of latent TGF-β in biological and pathological processes in the liver.

  13. Evidence for the possible biological significance of the igf-1 gene alternative splicing in prostate cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anastassios ePhilippou

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I has been implicated in the pathogenesis of prostate cancer (PCa, since it plays a key role in cell proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis. The IGF-I actions are mediated mainly via its binding to the type I IGF receptor (IGF-IR, however IGF-I signaling via insulin receptor (IR and hybrid IGF-I/IR is also evident. Different IGF-I mRNA splice variants, namely IGF-IEa, IGF-IEb and IGF-IEc, are expressed in human cells and tissues. These transcripts encode several IGF-I precursor proteins which contain the same bioactive product (mature IGF-I, however, they differ by the length of their signal peptides on the amino-terminal end and the structure of the extension peptides (E-peptides on the carboxy-terminal end. There is an increasing interest in the possible different role of the IGF-I transcripts and their respective non-(matureIGF-I products in the regulation of distinct biological activities. Moreover, there is strong evidence of a differential expression profile of the IGF-I splice variants in normal vs. PCa tissues and PCa cells, implying that the expression pattern of the various IGF-I transcripts and their respective protein products may possess different functions in cancer biology. Herein, the evidence that the IGF-IEc transcript regulates PCa growth via Ec-peptide specific and IGF-IR/IR-independent signaling is discussed.

  14. The Reactive Species Interactome: Evolutionary Emergence, Biological Significance, and Opportunities for Redox Metabolomics and Personalized Medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cortese-Krott, Miriam M; Koning, Anne; Kuhnle, Gunter G C; Nagy, Peter; Bianco, Christopher L; Pasch, Andreas; Wink, David A; Fukuto, Jon M; Jackson, Alan A; van Goor, Harry; Olson, Kenneth R; Feelisch, Martin

    2017-10-01

    Oxidative stress is thought to account for aberrant redox homeostasis and contribute to aging and disease. However, more often than not, administration of antioxidants is ineffective, suggesting that our current understanding of the underlying regulatory processes is incomplete. Recent Advances: Similar to reactive oxygen species and reactive nitrogen species, reactive sulfur species are now emerging as important signaling molecules, targeting regulatory cysteine redox switches in proteins, affecting gene regulation, ion transport, intermediary metabolism, and mitochondrial function. To rationalize the complexity of chemical interactions of reactive species with themselves and their targets and help define their role in systemic metabolic control, we here introduce a novel integrative concept defined as the reactive species interactome (RSI). The RSI is a primeval multilevel redox regulatory system whose architecture, together with the physicochemical characteristics of its constituents, allows efficient sensing and rapid adaptation to environmental changes and various other stressors to enhance fitness and resilience at the local and whole-organism level. To better characterize the RSI-related processes that determine fluxes through specific pathways and enable integration, it is necessary to disentangle the chemical biology and activity of reactive species (including precursors and reaction products), their targets, communication systems, and effects on cellular, organ, and whole-organism bioenergetics using system-level/network analyses. Understanding the mechanisms through which the RSI operates will enable a better appreciation of the possibilities to modulate the entire biological system; moreover, unveiling molecular signatures that characterize specific environmental challenges or other forms of stress will provide new prevention/intervention opportunities for personalized medicine. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 00, 000-000.

  15. DNA barcoding as a tool for Great Lakes biological assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enumerating organisms found in water samples in support of biodiversity and biological condition assessment is a mainstay of aquatic ecology, yet can require considerable resources and expertise. DNA-based identification of mixed-organism samples offers the potential to greatly ...

  16. BIOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT OF WATER QUALITY: A STUDY OF ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    DR. AMIN

    ABSTRACT. This study was carried out to survey the biotic community of Challawa river water in Kano, Nigeria, using Biological Monitoring Working Party Score (BMWP) and Average Score Per Taxa (ASPT) assessment tools to evaluate the water quality in the field. Using standardized sampling technique insects, insects' ...

  17. River Pollution: Part II. Biological Methods for Assessing Water Quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Openshaw, Peter

    1984-01-01

    Discusses methods used in the biological assessment of river quality and such indicators of clean and polluted waters as the Trent Biotic Index, Chandler Score System, and species diversity indexes. Includes a summary of a river classification scheme based on quality criteria related to water use. (JN)

  18. Systems biology analysis of omeprazole therapy in cirrhosis demonstrates significant shifts in gut microbiota composition and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bajaj, Jasmohan S; Cox, I Jane; Betrapally, Naga S; Heuman, Douglas M; Schubert, Mitchell L; Ratneswaran, Maiyuran; Hylemon, Phillip B; White, Melanie B; Daita, Kalyani; Noble, Nicole A; Sikaroodi, Masoumeh; Williams, Roger; Crossey, Mary M E; Taylor-Robinson, Simon D; Gillevet, Patrick M

    2014-11-15

    Proton pump inhibitors (PPI) have been associated with infectious complications in cirrhosis, but their impact on distal gut microbiota composition and function is unclear. We aimed to evaluate changes in stool microbiota composition and function in patients with cirrhosis and healthy controls after omeprazole therapy. Both 15 compensated cirrhotic patients and 15 age-matched controls underwent serum gastrin measurement, stool microbiota profiling with multitagged pyrosequencing, and urinary metabolic profiling with NMR spectroscopy to assess microbial cometabolites before/after a 14-day course of 40 mg/day omeprazole under constant diet conditions. Results before (pre) and after PPI were compared in both groups, compared with baseline by systems biology techniques. Adherence was >95% without changes in diet or MELD (model for end-stage liver disease) score during the study. Serum gastrin concentrations significantly increased after PPI in cirrhosis (pre 38.3 ± 35.8 vs. 115.6 ± 79.3 pg/ml P microbiota change was seen in both controls and cirrhosis after omeprazole (QIIME P microbiota shift and functional change in the distal gut in patients with compensated cirrhosis that could set the stage for bacterial overgrowth. Copyright © 2014 the American Physiological Society.

  19. Cyclopenta-Fused Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (CP-PAH). Recurring Combustion Effluents and Their Biological Significance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Otero Lobato, María José

    2004-01-01

    The convenient synthesis of a large set of (multiple) CP-PAH by Flash Vacuum Thermolysis (FVT), which have all been identified in combustion exhausts, allows their systematic assessment for mutagenicity in the bacterial mutagenicity assay (Ames-assay, TA98±S9-mix). Consequently, the physico-chemical

  20. The Reactive Species Interactome : Evolutionary Emergence, Biological Significance, and Opportunities for Redox Metabolomics and Personalized Medicine

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cortese-Krott, Miriam M.; Koning, Anne; Kuhnle, Gunter G. C.; Nagy, Peter; Bianco, Christopher L.; Pasch, Andreas; Wink, David A.; Fukuto, Jon M.; Jackson, Alan A.; van Goor, Harry; Olson, Kenneth R.; Feelisch, Martin

    2017-01-01

    Significance: Oxidative stress is thought to account for aberrant redox homeostasis and contribute to aging and disease. However, more often than not, administration of antioxidants is ineffective, suggesting that our current understanding of the underlying regulatory processes is incomplete. Recent

  1. Significant Deregulated Pathways in Diabetes Type II Complications Identified through Expression Based Network Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ukil, Sanchaita; Sinha, Meenakshee; Varshney, Lavneesh; Agrawal, Shipra

    Type 2 Diabetes is a complex multifactorial disease, which alters several signaling cascades giving rise to serious complications. It is one of the major risk factors for cardiovascular diseases. The present research work describes an integrated functional network biology approach to identify pathways that get transcriptionally altered and lead to complex complications thereby amplifying the phenotypic effect of the impaired disease state. We have identified two sub-network modules, which could be activated under abnormal circumstances in diabetes. Present work describes key proteins such as P85A and SRC serving as important nodes to mediate alternate signaling routes during diseased condition. P85A has been shown to be an important link between stress responsive MAPK and CVD markers involved in fibrosis. MAPK8 has been shown to interact with P85A and further activate CTGF through VEGF signaling. We have traced a novel and unique route correlating inflammation and fibrosis by considering P85A as a key mediator of signals. The next sub-network module shows SRC as a junction for various signaling processes, which results in interaction between NF-kB and beta catenin to cause cell death. The powerful interaction between these important genes in response to transcriptionally altered lipid metabolism and impaired inflammatory response via SRC causes apoptosis of cells. The crosstalk between inflammation, lipid homeostasis and stress, and their serious effects downstream have been explained in the present analyses.

  2. Extracting biologically significant patterns from short time series gene expression data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    McGinnis Thomas

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Time series gene expression data analysis is used widely to study the dynamics of various cell processes. Most of the time series data available today consist of few time points only, thus making the application of standard clustering techniques difficult. Results We developed two new algorithms that are capable of extracting biological patterns from short time point series gene expression data. The two algorithms, ASTRO and MiMeSR, are inspired by the rank order preserving framework and the minimum mean squared residue approach, respectively. However, ASTRO and MiMeSR differ from previous approaches in that they take advantage of the relatively few number of time points in order to reduce the problem from NP-hard to linear. Tested on well-defined short time expression data, we found that our approaches are robust to noise, as well as to random patterns, and that they can correctly detect the temporal expression profile of relevant functional categories. Evaluation of our methods was performed using Gene Ontology (GO annotations and chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP-chip data. Conclusion Our approaches generally outperform both standard clustering algorithms and algorithms designed specifically for clustering of short time series gene expression data. Both algorithms are available at http://www.benoslab.pitt.edu/astro/.

  3. Family structure and wellbeing of out-of-wedlock children: The significance of the biological parents' relationship

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shirley H. Liu

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available This study examines the role of the relationship between the biological parents in determining child wellbeing using longitudinal data from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study (FFCWS. We extend prior research by considering children born to unmarried parents in an investigation of the effect of the relationship structure between the biological parents on infant health and behavior. The main findings are that children born to cohabiting biological parents (i realize better outcomes, on average, than those born to mothers who are less involved with the child's biological father, and (ii whose parents marry within a year after childbirth do not display significantly better outcomes than children of parents who continue to cohabit. Furthermore, children born to cohabiting or visiting biological parents who end their relationship within the first year of the child's life are up to 9 percent more likely to have asthma compared to children whose biological parents remain (romantically involved. The results are robust to a rich set of controls for socioeconomic status, health endowments, home investments, and relationship characteristics.

  4. Biological Assessment of the release of the biological control agent Diorhabda elongata on threatened, endangered and candidate species.

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This Biological Assessment proposes to release the biological control agent Diorhabda elongata on the Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge (CMR) to combat...

  5. PeerWise provides significant academic benefits to biological science students across diverse learning tasks, but with minimal instructor intervention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McQueen, H A; Shields, C; Finnegan, D J; Higham, J; Simmen, M W

    2014-01-01

    We demonstrate that student engagement with PeerWise, an online tool that allows students to author and answer multiple-choice questions (MCQs), is associated with enhanced academic performance across diverse assessment types on a second year Genetics course. Benefits were consistent over three course deliveries, with differential benefits bestowed on groups of different prior ability. A rating scheme, to assess the educational quality of students' questions, is presented and demonstrates that our students are able intuitively to make such quality assessments, and that the process of authoring high quality questions alone does not explain the academic benefits. We further test the benefits of providing additional PeerWise support and conclude that PeerWise works efficiently with minimal intervention, and can be reliably assessed using automatically generated PeerWise scores. Copyright © 2014 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  6. Advanced Level Biology Teachers' Attitudes towards Assessment and Their Engagement in Assessment for Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bramwell-Lalor, Sharon; Rainford, Marcia

    2015-01-01

    This paper reports on a Mixed Methods study involving an investigation into the attitudes of advanced level biology teachers towards assessment and describes the teachers' experiences while being engaged in Assessment for Learning (AfL) practices such as sharing of learning objectives and peer- and self-assessment. Quantitative data were collected…

  7. Biological significance and topological basis of aquaporin-partnering protein-protein interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Hongtao; Dong, Hansong

    2015-01-01

    Aquaporins (AQPs) are intramolecular channels essential for transport of H2O, CO2, and other small substrates across membranes. Through this function, AQPs can modulate CO2 uptake and assimilation in plants and regulate water relations and many other physiological processes in all living organisms. To execute their physiological roles, AQPs may experience 3 types of hetero-molecular interaction, between AQPs and their kinases; between AQP isoforms; and between AQPs and other proteins that are neither AQPs nor kinases. Interacting with non-AQP non-kinase proteins may enable AQPs to extend their functions beyond substrate transport, and most fascinatingly, to serve as a gateway control for translocation of virulence effectors from pathogenic bacteria into the cytosol of eukaryotic cells. In this mini review, we will summarize the latter 2 types of interaction and discuss the physiological and/or pathological significance. We will also discuss a research angle to elucidate the structural basis of AQP-partnering protein interactions.

  8. Biological Inquiry: A New Course and Assessment Plan in Response to the Call to Transform Undergraduate Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldey, Ellen S.; Abercrombie, Clarence L.; Ivy, Tracie M.; Kusher, Dave I.; Moeller, John F.; Rayner, Doug A.; Smith, Charles F.; Spivey, Natalie W.

    2012-01-01

    We transformed our first-year curriculum in biology with a new course, Biological Inquiry, in which >50% of all incoming, first-year students enroll. The course replaced a traditional, content-driven course that relied on outdated approaches to teaching and learning. We diversified pedagogical practices by adopting guided inquiry in class and in labs, which are devoted to building authentic research skills through open-ended experiments. Students develop core biological knowledge, from the ecosystem to molecular level, and core skills through regular practice in hypothesis testing, reading primary literature, analyzing data, interpreting results, writing in disciplinary style, and working in teams. Assignments and exams require higher-order cognitive processes, and students build new knowledge and skills through investigation of real-world problems (e.g., malaria), which engages students’ interest. Evidence from direct and indirect assessment has guided continuous course revision and has revealed that compared with the course it replaced, Biological Inquiry produces significant learning gains in all targeted areas. It also retains 94% of students (both BA and BS track) compared with 79% in the majors-only course it replaced. The project has had broad impact across the entire college and reflects the input of numerous constituencies and close collaboration among biology professors and students. PMID:23222831

  9. Biological inquiry: a new course and assessment plan in response to the call to transform undergraduate biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldey, Ellen S; Abercrombie, Clarence L; Ivy, Tracie M; Kusher, Dave I; Moeller, John F; Rayner, Doug A; Smith, Charles F; Spivey, Natalie W

    2012-01-01

    We transformed our first-year curriculum in biology with a new course, Biological Inquiry, in which >50% of all incoming, first-year students enroll. The course replaced a traditional, content-driven course that relied on outdated approaches to teaching and learning. We diversified pedagogical practices by adopting guided inquiry in class and in labs, which are devoted to building authentic research skills through open-ended experiments. Students develop core biological knowledge, from the ecosystem to molecular level, and core skills through regular practice in hypothesis testing, reading primary literature, analyzing data, interpreting results, writing in disciplinary style, and working in teams. Assignments and exams require higher-order cognitive processes, and students build new knowledge and skills through investigation of real-world problems (e.g., malaria), which engages students' interest. Evidence from direct and indirect assessment has guided continuous course revision and has revealed that compared with the course it replaced, Biological Inquiry produces significant learning gains in all targeted areas. It also retains 94% of students (both BA and BS track) compared with 79% in the majors-only course it replaced. The project has had broad impact across the entire college and reflects the input of numerous constituencies and close collaboration among biology professors and students.

  10. Clinicopathological and biological significance of aberrant activation of glycogen synthase kinase-3 in ovarian cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fu Y

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Yunfeng Fu,1 Xinyu Wang,1 Xiaodong Cheng,1 Feng Ye,2 Xing Xie,1,2 Weiguo Lu1,2 1Department of Gynecologic Oncology, Women's Hospital, School of Medicine, Zhejiang University, 2Women's Reproduction and Health Laboratory of Zhejiang Province, Hangzhou, People's Republic of China Background: Glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3 plays an important role in human cancer. The aim of this study is to evaluate the clinicopathological significance of expression of GSK-3α/β and pGSK-3α/βTyr279/216 in patients with epithelial ovarian cancer and to investigate whether GSK-3 inhibition can influence cell viability and tumor growth of ovarian cancer. Methods: Immunohistochemistry was used to examine expression of GSK-3α/β and pGSK-3α/βTyr279/216 in 71 human epithelial ovarian cancer tissues and correlations between protein expression, and clinicopathological factors were analyzed. Cell viability was determined by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT assay following exposure of ovarian carcinoma cells to pharmacological inhibitors of GSK-3 or GSK-3 small interfering RNA. In vivo validation of tumor growth inhibition was performed with xenograft mice. Results: The expression levels of GSK-3α/β and pGSK-3α/βTyr279/216 in ovarian cancers were significantly higher than those in benign tumors. High expression of GSK-3α/β was more likely to be found in patients with advanced International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO stages and high serum cancer antigen 125. Higher expression of pGSK-3α/βTyr279/216 was associated with advanced FIGO stages, residual tumor mass, high serum cancer antigen 125, and poor chemoresponse. Worse overall survival was revealed by Kaplan–Meier survival curves in patients with high expression of GSK-3α/β or pGSK-3α/βTyr279/216. Multivariate analysis indicated that FIGO stage, GSK-3α/β expression, and pGSK-3α/βTyr279/216 expression were independent prognostic factors for overall

  11. Significance of biological hydrogen oxidation in a continuous single-chamber microbial electrolysis cell.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hyung-Sool; Rittmann, Bruce E

    2010-02-01

    A single-chamber microbial electrolysis cell (MEC) that used a high density of nonmetal-catalyst carbon fibers as the anode achieved high volumetric current densities from 1470 +/- 60 to 1630 +/- 50 A/m(3) for a hydraulic retention time of 1.6-6.5 h. The high current density was driven by a large anode surface area and corresponded to a volumetric chemical oxygen demand (COD)-removal rate of 27-49 kg COD/m(3).d. Observed H(2) harvesting rates were from 2.6 +/- 0.10 to 4.3 +/- 0.46 m(3) H(2)/m(3).d, but the H(2) production rates computed from the current densities were 16.3-18.2 m(3) H(2)/m(3).d. Tracking all significant electron sinks (residual acetate, H(2), CH(4), biomass, and soluble microbial products (SMP)) in the single-chamber MEC showed that H(2) reoxidation by anode-respiring bacteria recycled H(2) between the cathode and the anode, and this caused the large discrepancy in H(2) production and harvest rates. H(2) recycle accounted for 62-76% of observed current density, and this made the observed Coulombic efficiency 190-310% at steady state. Consequently, the cathodic conversion efficiency was only 16-24%. The current density added by H(2) recycle also increased the applied voltage from approximately 0.6 V to approximately 1.5 V for the highest H(2) harvest rate (4.3 m(3) H(2)/m(3).d). CH(4) generation consistently occurred in the continuous single-chamber MEC, and its electron fraction of consumed acetate was 7-25%. Because of methane formation and biomass/SMP accumulation, the overall H(2) recovery was moderate at 1.8-2.0 mol of H(2)/mol of acetate in the MEC. Thus, this study illustrates that a single-chamber MEC with a high anode surface area can generate high volumetric rates for COD removal and H(2) generation, but H(2) recycle and methanogenesis present significant challenges for practical application.

  12. Biological and clinical significance of p75NTR expression in laryngeal squamous epithelia and laryngocarcinoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiaoming; Shen, Yupeng; Di, Bin; Li, Jun; Geng, Jiangqiao; Lu, Xiuying; He, Zhanguo

    2012-03-01

    The apparent features of p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75(NTR)) expression indicated that p75(NTR) would serve as a potential stem cell marker for normal human laryngeal squamous epithelia. In human laryngeal squamous cell carcinoma (LSCC) p75(NTR) is differentially expressed. The abnormal expression and distribution of p75(NTR) may indicate malignant transformation. To investigate the expression of p75(NTR) and its possible roles in normal laryngeal squamous epithelia and LSCC. We used immunohistochemistry methods to examine normal laryngeal epithelia, para-cancer mucosa with dysplasia, laryngeal papilloma, and LSCC specimens for the expression of p75(NTR), nerve growth factor (NGF), -tyrosine kinase receptor (TrkA), p63, and Ki67. Immunocytochemistry and flow cytometry were used to examine the expression of p75(NTR) in Hep-2 cells. The expression of p75(NTR) was only located in basal cells of normal laryngeal epithelia, consistent with the staining features of epithelial stem cells as evidenced by parallel staining of p63, a putative keratinocyte stem cell marker. p75(NTR) is differentially expressed in LSCC, although no significant relationship was found with many clinicopathologic factors, this expression and distribution may correlate to malignant transformation and tumor proliferation. Co-expression of p75(NTR) and CD133 was confirmed, showing the association of p75(NTR)-positive cells with cancer stem cells in Hep-2 cells.

  13. Biological significance of PinX1 telomerase inhibitor in esophageal carcinoma treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Xiang-Kui; Yan, Rui-Hua; Geng, Xiang-Qun; Li, Jing-Shan; Chen, Xiang-Ming; Li, Jian-Zhe

    2016-10-01

    In the present study, to investigate the expression of PinX1 gene and its functional effects in human esophageal carcinoma (Eca)-109 cell line, expression vectors of human PinX1 (pEGFP-C3-PinX1) and its small interfering RNA (PinX1-FAM-siRNA) were constructed and transfected into Eca-109 cells using Lipofectamine 2000. Firstly, the mRNA expression level of PinX1 was examined using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Once successful transfection was achieved, the effects on the mRNA level of human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT), telomerase activity, cell proliferation and apoptosis were examined by semi-quantitative RT-PCR, stretch PCR, MTT assay and flow cytometry, respectively. Analysis of restriction and sequencing demonstrated that the recombining plasmids were successfully constructed. The results also indicated that transfection with pEGFP-C3-PinX1 and PinX1-FAM-siRNA into Eca-109 cells significantly increased PinX1 mRNA, decreased hTERT mRNA by 29.9% (Ptelomerase activity (Ptelomerase activity and cell apoptotic index were not altered. Exogenous PinX1 has been demonstrated to be highly expressed in human Eca. PinX1 can inhibit human telomerase activity and the expression of hTERT mRNA, reduce tumor cell growth and induce apoptosis. Notably, these inhibitory functions were inhibited by silencing PinX1 in Eca with PinX1-FAM-siRNA. PinX1 was successfully increased and decreased in the present study, demonstrating that it may be a potential telomerase activity inhibitor. As PinX1 is an endogenous telomerase inhibitor, it may be used as a novel tumor-targeted gene therapy.

  14. Assessing biological effects from highway-runoff constituents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buckler, Denny R.; Granato, Gregory E.

    1999-01-01

    Increased emphasis on evaluation of nonpoint-source pollution has intensified the need for techniques that can be used to discern the toxicological effects of complex chemical mixtures. In response, the use of biological assessment techniques is receiving increased regulatory emphasis. When applied with documented habitat assessment and chemical analysis, these techniques can increase our understanding of the influence of environmental contaminants on the biological integrity and ecological function of aquatic communities.The contaminants of greatest potential concern in highway runoff are those that arise from highway construction, maintenance, and use. The major contaminants of interest are deicers; nutrients; metals; petroleum-related organic compounds, such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene (BTEX), and methyl tert -butyl ether (MTBE); sediment washed off the road surface; and agricultural chemicals used in highway maintenance. Hundreds, if not thousands, of biological endpoints (measurable responses of living organisms) may be either directly or associatively affected by contaminant exposure. Measurable effects can occur throughout ecosystem processes across the wide range of biological complexity, ranging from responses at the biochemical level to the community level. The challenge to the environmental scientist is to develop an understanding of the relationship of effects at various levels of biological organization in order to determine whether a causal relationship exists between chemical exposure and substantial ecological impairment. This report provides a brief history of the evolution of biological assessment techniques, a description of the major classes of contaminants that are of particular interest in highway runoff, an overview of representative biological assessment techniques, and a discussion of data-quality considerations. Published reports with a focus on the effects of highway runoff on the

  15. QUALITY COMPOSITION AND BIOLOGICAL SIGNIFICANCE OF THE BANGLADESHI AND CHINA GINGER (ZINGIBER OFFICINALE ROSC.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sudam Nandi

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The essential oil of Zingiber officinale Rosc. was extracted from China and Bangladeshi varieties and yielded 0.21% and 0.23 % by hydro-distillation method on fresh weight basis respectively. Fifteen compounds were identified and quantified by GC-MS. The major constituents of China and Bangladeshi ginger essential oils were zingiberene 38.10 % and 41.49%, β-phellandrene 12.0% and 9.92%, α-citral 11.48% and 9.76 %, α-curcumene 9.22% and 11.58%, camphene 5.94% and 4.60% , β-bisabolene 4.39% and 5.0% respectively. The IC50 (DPPH method values were found 61.18 µg/mL and 56.71 µg/mL with the highest inhibition of 78.49 % and 80.77% and the LC50 values in the brine shrimp lethality cytotoxicity bioassay were found 0.4842 µg/mL and 0.7151 µg/mL in China and Bangladeshi ginger essential oil respectively. Both the essential oils showed significant activities against some gram positive, gram negative bacteria and fungi. The proximate composition of the China and Bangladeshi variety showed the ash (7.12±0.151, 8.15±0.18%, protein (5.47±0.19, 6.60±0.16%, crude fibre (4.32±0.10, 4.61±0.12%, carbohydrate (16..06±0.35, 18.38±0.41 and food energy (70.50±0.89, 81.74±1.01 kcal/100g. respectively. The elemental compositions of the both varieties were found rich in Ca, Mg, Fe, Al, Se, Na and K. These results indicate the quality composition of the two varieties may find interest in spice and culinary industries as well as in medicinal preparation.

  16. A Creek to Bay Biological Assessment in Oakland, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahumada, E.; Ramirez, N.; Lopez, A.; Avila, M.; Ramirez, J.; Arroyo, D.; Bracho, H.; Casanova, A.; Pierson, E.

    2011-12-01

    In 2007, the Surface Water Ambient Monitoring Program (SWAMP) assessed the impact of trash on water quality in the Peralta Creek which is located in the Fruitvale district of Oakland, CA. This 2011 follow-up study will take further steps in evaluating the physical and biological impacts of pollution and human development on Peralta Creek and in the San Leandro Bay, where the Creek empties into the larger San Francisco Bay estuary. This study will utilize two forms of biological assessment in order to determine the level of water quality and ecosystem health of Peralta Creek and San Leandro Bay in Oakland, California. A Rapid Bioassesment Protocal (RBP) will be used as the method of biological assessment for Peralta Creek. RBP uses a biotic index of benthic macroinvertebrates to provide a measure of a water body's health. Larval trematodes found in two mud snails (Ilynassa obsoleta and Cerithidea californica) will be used to evaluate the health of the San Leandro Bay. Due to the complex life cycle of trematodes, the measure of trematode diversity and richness in host species serves as an indicator of estuarine health (Huspeni 2005). We have completed the assessment of one section of Peralta Creek, located at 2465 34th Avenue, Oakland, CA 94601. Abundance results indicate a moderately healthy creek because there were high levels of pollution tolerant benthic macroinvertebrates. The tolerant group of benthic macroinvertebrates includes such organisms as flatworms, leeches, and scuds. This is possibly due to this section of the creek being pumped up to the surface from culverts impacting the macroinvertebrate's life cycle. Another contributing factor to creek health is the amount of organic debris found in the creek, which inhibits the flow and oxygenation of the water, allowing for more pollution tolerant aquatic insects to persist. Further investigation is being conducted to fully assess the Peralta Creek watershed; from the preliminary results one can surmise that

  17. Predation by cosmopolitan spiders upon the medically significant pest species Loxosceles reclusa (Araneae: Sicariidae): limited possibilities for biological control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandidge, Jamél

    2004-04-01

    Interspecific predation of three cosmopolitan house spiders, Achearanea tepidariorum (Kock 1841) (Theridiidae), Steotoda triangulosa (Walckenaer 1802) (Theridiidae), and Pholcus phalangioides (Doleschall 1859) (Pholcidae), and the medically significant brown recluse spider, Loxosceles reclusa (Sicariidae) were examined to evaluate transitive predatory relationships and to explore the potential use of cosmopolitan spiders as effective biological control agents on L. reclusa. Fifty houses from northeastern Kansas were visually inspected from May to December 2002 for cosmopolitan spiders and L. reclusa. In 25 houses, insect monitoring traps were used to sample spider diversity and abundance. The remaining 25 houses were monitored to examine intraguild predation and spider behavior. If cosmopolitan spiders have the ability to regulate or decrease L. reclusa populations, houses with large cosmopolitan spider populations are expected to have significantly fewer L. reclusa than houses without cosmopolitan spiders. Predation and/or evidence of predation by all three cosmopolitan spiders on L. reclusa was detected in 68% of houses. Spearman's rank correlation analysis showed overall positive relationships between population densities of cosmopolitan spiders and L. reclusa. When evaluated independently, the presence of both A. tepidariorum and S. triangulosa showed negative, yet nonsignificant, relationships with L. reclusa densities, whereas P. phalangioides showed a positive nonsignificant relationship. Although statistical tests showed a decrease in L. reclusa population densities with increased population densities of two cosmopolitan species, alluding to a potential beneficial interaction for biological control, observations of spider behavior, web positioning (niche partitioning), and predation showed little possibility of biological control capabilities.

  18. Human biological monitoring of mercury for exposure assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Romilda Z. Boerleider

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Mercury (Hg is a naturally occurring element that has metallic, inorganic and organic forms, each with their own implications for human health. Exposure to mercury primarily occurs by inhalation of metallic mercury vapors and by dietary intake of organic mercury. Early health effects are often not well detected. Therefore, determination of the internal dose is a valuable approach in primary prevention. With this review, we aim to give an overview of the different human biological monitoring (HBM approaches for short- and long-term exposure to different chemical forms of mercury. We performed a literature search in PubMed using Medical Subject Headings (MeSH terms as well as free text words. From 417 reviews found, we selected 8 reviews. In addition, online information from national and international health authorities was used. The format of the biological application datasheets from the BIOMONECS project was used to provide an overview of the different biological media for HBM of mercury and methyl mercury. Recent exposure to metallic mercury can be assessed by blood sampling within 24 h after exposure. If children are involved, breath sampling can be considered as a less invasive alternative. Urinary mercury levels mainly reflect long-term inhalation exposure to elemental mercury vapors and divalent mercury. Mercury in blood and hair reflects mid- and long-term exposure to methyl mercury, whereas analysis of a hair segment close to the scalp indicates recent exposure. A flow chart was developed to support the selection of the most suitable HBM approach. For each of the different biological matrices, we provided an overview of advantages and limitations. Depending on the source and duration of exposure, blood, exhaled air, urine or hair can be used for mercury exposure assessment.

  19. Significance of CT scan and color Doppler duplex ultrasound in the assessment of Abernethy malformation

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Nacif, Lucas Souto; Paranaguá-Vezozzo, Denise Cerqueira; Galvão, Flávio Henrique Ferreira; Rocha, Manoel S; Andraus, Wellington; Carrilho, Flair Jose; D'Albuquerque, Luiz Carneiro

    2015-01-01

    .... In this study we highlight the significance of the use of CT scans and Color Doppler Duplex Ultrasound for the diagnosis, treatment and evolution assessment in two adults with Abernethy malformation...

  20. The GPR54-Kisspeptin complex in reproductive biology: neuroendocrine significance and implications for ovulation induction and contraception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sills, Eric Scott; Walsh, Anthony P H

    2008-12-01

    KISS1 encodes the kisspeptin (KP) family of peptides which were originally characterised as potent antimetastatic agents in breast cancer and malignant melanoma cells. One member of this family of arginine-phenylalanine amide peptides, KP-54, was subsequently identified as the natural ligand for the G-protein coupled receptor-54 (GPR54). In addition to its importance as a metastatic suppressor, KP has been found to play a major neuroregulatory role in governing endogenous gonadotropin release by its modulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis. In humans, KISS1 mRNA has been localised to the hypothalamic anteroventral periventricular nucleus and arcuate nucleus. Although GPR54 is expressed in human pituitary cells, it is not presently known if gonadotrope cells themselves are targets for significant KP activity. It was recently shown that full disruption of the KP/GPR54 complex resulted in hypogonadotropic hypogonadism. Indeed, evidence now suggests that KP/GPR54 signalling during gestation is necessary for sexual differentiation and implicates activation of the KP/GPR54 complex as the single most important upstream event regulating GnRH release. Several compelling studies have placed KP as the leading candidate molecule responsible for initiating puberty, making this receptor-ligand complex of fundamental importance to the neuroendocrinology of reproduction. Here, we discuss key KP/GPR54 discovery events and present an evolution of KP biology in the context of recent animal and human experimental work. With evidence pointing to proper KP/GPR54 signalling as the principal trigger for activation of GnRH neurons and subsequent ovulation, elucidation of how this pathway is modulated is likely to bring novel pharmacologic strategies for fertility treatment (and contraception) within reach. Because the physiological significance KP is now acknowledged to extend well beyond cancer biology (and may also contribute to the pathophysiology of pre

  1. 77 FR 66874 - Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-11-07

    ... COMMISSION Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory... Environmental Assessment (EA) to evaluate the potential environmental impacts that may arise as a result of this... Section 102(2) of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 as amended. Based on the EA, and in...

  2. 21 CFR 25.51 - Environmental assessments and findings of no significant impact.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Environmental assessments and findings of no... HUMAN SERVICES GENERAL ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT CONSIDERATIONS Public Participation and Notification of Environmental Documents § 25.51 Environmental assessments and findings of no significant impact. (a) Data and...

  3. Structural diversity and biological significance of lipoteichoic acid in Gram-positive bacteria: focusing on beneficial probiotic lactic acid bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shiraishi, Tsukasa; Yokota, Shinichi; Fukiya, Satoru; Yokota, Atsushi

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial cell surface molecules are at the forefront of host-bacterium interactions. Teichoic acids are observed only in Gram-positive bacteria, and they are one of the main cell surface components. Teichoic acids play important physiological roles and contribute to the bacterial interaction with their host. In particular, lipoteichoic acid (LTA) anchored to the cell membrane has attracted attention as a host immunomodulator. Chemical and biological characteristics of LTA from various bacteria have been described. However, most of the information concerns pathogenic bacteria, and information on beneficial bacteria, including probiotic lactic acid bacteria, is insufficient. LTA is structurally diverse. Strain-level structural diversity of LTA is suggested to underpin its immunomodulatory activities. Thus, the structural information on LTA in probiotics, in particular strain-associated diversity, is important for understanding its beneficial roles associated with the modulation of immune response. Continued accumulation of structural information is necessary to elucidate the detailed physiological roles and significance of LTA. In this review article, we summarize the current state of knowledge on LTA structure, in particular the structure of LTA from lactic acid bacteria. We also describe the significance of structural diversity and biological roles of LTA.

  4. Biological designer self-assembling peptide nanofiber scaffolds significantly enhance osteoblast proliferation, differentiation and 3-D migration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akihiro Horii

    Full Text Available A class of self-assembling peptide nanofiber scaffolds has been shown to be an excellent biological material for 3-dimension cell culture and stimulating cell migration into the scaffold, as well as for repairing tissue defects in animals. We report here the development of several peptide nanofiber scaffolds designed specifically for osteoblasts. We designed one of the pure self-assembling peptide scaffolds RADA16-I through direct coupling to short biologically active motifs. The motifs included osteogenic growth peptide ALK (ALKRQGRTLYGF bone-cell secreted-signal peptide, osteopontin cell adhesion motif DGR (DGRGDSVAYG and 2-unit RGD binding sequence PGR (PRGDSGYRGDS. We made the new peptide scaffolds by mixing the pure RAD16 and designer-peptide solutions, and we examined the molecular integration of the mixed nanofiber scaffolds using AFM. Compared to pure RAD16 scaffold, we found that these designer peptide scaffolds significantly promoted mouse pre-osteoblast MC3T3-E1 cell proliferation. Moreover, alkaline phosphatase (ALP activity and osteocalcin secretion, which are early and late markers for osteoblastic differentiation, were also significantly increased. We demonstrated that the designer, self-assembling peptide scaffolds promoted the proliferation and osteogenic differentiation of MC3T3-E1. Under the identical culture medium condition, confocal images unequivocally demonstrated that the designer PRG peptide scaffold stimulated cell migration into the 3-D scaffold. Our results suggest that these designer peptide scaffolds may be very useful for promoting bone tissue regeneration.

  5. 75 FR 2480 - Wildlife Services; Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-15

    ... Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Wildlife Services; Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA. ACTION... of no significant impact relative to oral rabies vaccination programs in several States. The...

  6. Assessment of stream biological responses under multiple-stress conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comte, Lise; Lek, Sovan; de Deckere, Eric; de Zwart, Dick; Gevrey, Muriel

    2010-09-01

    Due to the numerous anthropogenic stress factors that affect aquatic ecosystems, a better understanding of the adverse consequences on the biological community of combined pressures is needed to attain the objectives of the European Water Framework Directive. In this study we propose an innovative approach to assess the biological impact of toxicants under field conditions on a large spatial scale. Artificial Neural Network (ANN) analyses, focusing on impacts at the community level, were carried out to identify the relative importance of environmental and toxic stress factors on the patterns observed in the aquatic invertebrate fauna from the Scheldt basin (Belgium). Our results show that the use of the backpropagation algorithm of the ANN is a promising method to highlight the relationship between environmental pollution and biological responses. This method allows the effects of chemical exposure to be distinguished from the effects caused by other stressors in running waters. Moreover, the use of an overall estimate for toxic pressure in predictive models enables the links between toxicants and community alterations in the field to be clarified. The ANN correctly predicts 74% of samples with an area under the curve of 0.89 and a Cohen's kappa coefficient of 0.64. Organic load, oxygen availability, water temperature and the nitrate concentration appeared important factors in predicting aquatic invertebrate assemblages. On the other hand, toxic pressure did not seem relevant for these assemblages, suggesting that the water quality characteristics were therefore more important than exposure to toxicants in the water phase for the aquatic invertebrate communities in the study area. However, we suggest that the high organic load encountered in the Scheldt basin may lead to an underestimation of the impact of toxicity.

  7. Self-Assessment and Appearance Evaluation in Student Group as Predictors in Relationships of Interpersonal Significance

    OpenAIRE

    Labunskaya V.A.

    2016-01-01

    The paper attempts to integrate the concept of relationships of interpersonal significance, approaches to the correlation between physical appearance and life satisfaction, as well as several concepts of interpersonal cognition, self-assessment and evaluations of other people’s physical appearance. It introduces the concept of “insignificant/significant assessor of appearance” and argues that among the factors that turn a group member into the “insignificant/significant assessor of appearance...

  8. A study assessing the potential of negative effects in interdisciplinary math-biology instruction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madlung, Andreas; Bremer, Martina; Himelblau, Edward; Tullis, Alexa

    2011-01-01

    There is increasing enthusiasm for teaching approaches that combine mathematics and biology. The call for integrating more quantitative work in biology education has led to new teaching tools that improve quantitative skills. Little is known, however, about whether increasing interdisciplinary work can lead to adverse effects, such as the development of broader but shallower skills or the possibility that math anxiety causes some students to disengage in the classroom, or, paradoxically, to focus so much on the mathematics that they lose sight of its application for the biological concepts in the center of the unit at hand. We have developed and assessed an integrative learning module and found disciplinary learning gains to be equally strong in first-year students who actively engaged in embedded quantitative calculations as in those students who were merely presented with quantitative data in the context of interpreting biological and biostatistical results. When presented to advanced biology students, our quantitative learning tool increased test performance significantly. We conclude from our study that the addition of mathematical calculations to the first year and advanced biology curricula did not hinder overall student learning, and may increase disciplinary learning and data interpretation skills in advanced students.

  9. A Study Assessing the Potential of Negative Effects in Interdisciplinary Math–Biology Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madlung, Andreas; Bremer, Martina; Himelblau, Edward; Tullis, Alexa

    2011-01-01

    There is increasing enthusiasm for teaching approaches that combine mathematics and biology. The call for integrating more quantitative work in biology education has led to new teaching tools that improve quantitative skills. Little is known, however, about whether increasing interdisciplinary work can lead to adverse effects, such as the development of broader but shallower skills or the possibility that math anxiety causes some students to disengage in the classroom, or, paradoxically, to focus so much on the mathematics that they lose sight of its application for the biological concepts in the center of the unit at hand. We have developed and assessed an integrative learning module and found disciplinary learning gains to be equally strong in first-year students who actively engaged in embedded quantitative calculations as in those students who were merely presented with quantitative data in the context of interpreting biological and biostatistical results. When presented to advanced biology students, our quantitative learning tool increased test performance significantly. We conclude from our study that the addition of mathematical calculations to the first year and advanced biology curricula did not hinder overall student learning, and may increase disciplinary learning and data interpretation skills in advanced students. PMID:21364099

  10. Clinical and biological significance of de novo CD5+ diffuse large B-cell lymphoma in Western countries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jabbar, Kausar J.; Cao, Xin; Tzankov, Alexandar; Visco, Carlo; Cai, Qingqing; Montes-Moreno, Santiago; An, Yuji; Dybkaer, Karen; Chiu, April; Orazi, Attilio; Zu, Youli; Bhagat, Govind; Richards, Kristy L.; Hsi, Eric D.; Choi, William W.L.; van Krieken, J. Han; Huh, Jooryung; Ponzoni, Maurilio; Ferreri, Andrés J.M.; Zhao, Xiaoying; Møller, Michael B.; Farnen, John P.; Winter, Jane N.; Piris, Miguel A.; Miranda, Roberto N.; Medeiros, L. Jeffrey; Young, Ken H.

    2015-01-01

    CD5 is a pan-T-cell surface marker and is rarely expressed in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). Large-scale studies of de novo CD5+ DLBCL are lacking in Western countries. In this study by the DLBCL Rituximab-CHOP Consortium, CD5 was expressed in 5.5% of 879 DLBCL patients from Western countries. CD5+ DLBCL was associated with higher frequencies of >1 ECOG performance status, bone marrow involvement, central nervous system relapse, activated B-cell–like subtype, Bcl-2 overexpression, and STAT3 and NF-κB activation, whereas rarely expressed single-stranded DNA-binding protein 2 (SSBP2), CD30 or had MYC mutations. With standard R-CHOP chemotherapy, CD5+ DLBCL patients had significantly worse overall survival (median, 25.3 months vs. not reached, PDLBCL patients, which was independent of Bcl-2, STAT3, NF-κB and the International Prognostic Index. Interestingly, SSBP2 expression abolished the prognostic significance of CD5 expression, suggesting a tumor-suppressor role of SSBP2 for CD5 signaling. Gene-expression profiling demonstrated that B-cell receptor signaling dysfunction and microenvironment alterations are the important mechanisms underlying the clinical impact of CD5 expression. This study shows the distinctive clinical and biological features of CD5+ DLBCL patients in Western countries and underscores important pathways with therapeutic implications. PMID:25760242

  11. HER family receptors expression in squamous cell carcinoma of the tongue: study of the possible prognostic and biological significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del Sordo, Rachele; Angiero, Francesca; Bellezza, Guido; Cavaliere, Antonio; Mameli, Maria Grazia; Stefani, Michele; Dessy, Enrico; Sidoni, Angelo

    2010-01-01

    The squamous cell carcinoma of the tongue (SCCT) is biologically and epidemiologically distinct from other oral cavity cancers and is associated with lower overall survival rates. The role of HER family members (HER-1, HER-2/neu, HER-3 and HER-4) in the pathogenesis and progression of head and neck squamous cell carcinomas has been demonstrated but no report have focused on SCCT. This study investigated, the expression of all members of the HER family, in a series of SCCT and studied the possible prognostic value and correlation with various clinico-pathological parameters. HER-1, HER-2/neu, HER-3 and HER-4 expression was analysed by semi-quantitative immunohistochemical staining on paraffin embedded tissue specimens from 40 patients who underwent surgery for SCCT between 1996 and 2006. HER-1 was overexpressed in 26 cases (65%), HER-2/neu in two (5%), HER-3 in 19 (48%) and HER-4 in three cases (8%). No significant correlation was found between clinicopathological variables and expression of HER-1 and HER-2/neu. HER-3 overexpression was significantly related to nodal stage, age (>or=64 years) and decreased overall survival (P HER-1 and HER-2/neu when determined with stringent criteria are not useful indicators of prognosis in SCCT. Only HER-3 overexpression may help in identifying SCCT with greater malignant potential also when it is coexpressed with HER-4. Instead, as in other malignancies, HER-4 could play a protective role in SCCT.

  12. 78 FR 46378 - La Crosse Boiling Water Reactor, Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-31

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION La Crosse Boiling Water Reactor, Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact... of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) for the La Crosse Boiling Water Reactor...

  13. 76 FR 28480 - Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact Related to Exemption From Certain...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-05-17

    ... environmental impacts. There will be minor savings of energy and vehicular use associated with the security... Division of Nuclear Safety, Illinois Emergency Management Agency, regarding the environmental impact of the... COMMISSION ; Docket No. 50-010 Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact Related to...

  14. 77 FR 8903 - Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact; Carolina Power and Light Company...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-02-15

    ... effects on the aquatic or terrestrial habitat in the vicinity of the plant, or to threatened, endangered... COMMISSION Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact; Carolina Power and Light Company Shearon Harris Nuclear Power Plant, Unit 1 AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission. ACTION: Notice of...

  15. 75 FR 11575 - James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-03-11

    ... COMMISSION James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant... Program for Nuclear Power Facilities Operating Prior to January 1, 1979,'' issued to Entergy Nuclear Operations, Inc. (the licensee), for the operation of the James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant (JAFNPP...

  16. Development of the PCAD Model to Assess Biological Significance of Acoustic Disturbance

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-30

    substantial pre-existing knowledge of foraging patterns, life- history schedules, and demographics. Therefore, it is essential to use well-studied species to...represent two life- history extremes (capital and income breeders), have clear taxonimic separation (pinnipeds and cetaceans), and both species have...Australian Journal of Zoology 40:143- 152. 6 Webb, P. M., D. E. Crocker, S. B. Blackwell, D. P. Costa, and B. J. Le Boeuf. 1998. Effects of buoyancy on

  17. Overview of BioCreAtIvE: critical assessment of information extraction for biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hirschman Lynette

    2005-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The goal of the first BioCreAtIvE challenge (Critical Assessment of Information Extraction in Biology was to provide a set of common evaluation tasks to assess the state of the art for text mining applied to biological problems. The results were presented in a workshop held in Granada, Spain March 28–31, 2004. The articles collected in this BMC Bioinformatics supplement entitled "A critical assessment of text mining methods in molecular biology" describe the BioCreAtIvE tasks, systems, results and their independent evaluation. Results BioCreAtIvE focused on two tasks. The first dealt with extraction of gene or protein names from text, and their mapping into standardized gene identifiers for three model organism databases (fly, mouse, yeast. The second task addressed issues of functional annotation, requiring systems to identify specific text passages that supported Gene Ontology annotations for specific proteins, given full text articles. Conclusion The first BioCreAtIvE assessment achieved a high level of international participation (27 groups from 10 countries. The assessment provided state-of-the-art performance results for a basic task (gene name finding and normalization, where the best systems achieved a balanced 80% precision / recall or better, which potentially makes them suitable for real applications in biology. The results for the advanced task (functional annotation from free text were significantly lower, demonstrating the current limitations of text-mining approaches where knowledge extrapolation and interpretation are required. In addition, an important contribution of BioCreAtIvE has been the creation and release of training and test data sets for both tasks. There are 22 articles in this special issue, including six that provide analyses of results or data quality for the data sets, including a novel inter-annotator consistency assessment for the test set used in task 2.

  18. Porphyrins from Messel oil shale (Eocene, Germany): Structure elucidation, geochemical and biological significance, and distribution as a function of depth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ocampo, Rubén; Bauder, Claude; Callot, Henry J.; Albrecht, Pierre

    1992-02-01

    The extraction and isolation procedures of twenty nickel porphyrins (seven alkylporphyrins, thirteen carboxylic acids) from lacustrine Messel shale (Eocene, Germany), as well as the unequivocal structural assignments (obtained using 200 and 400 MHz nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), nuclear Overhauser effect, mass spectrometry and total or partial synthesis of six reference compounds) are described. Ten porphyrins could be specifically correlated with biological precursors: algal chlorophyll c (4), bacteriochlorophylls d (3) and heme (3), while the remaining ones may arise from several chlorophylls. The structures of these fossil pigments mostly confirm the classical "Treibs scheme," including the origin of some porphyrins from nonchlorophyll sources. They also show that, even in a very immature sediment, deep modifications occur, including, in particular, extensive degradation of chlorophyll E ring. The composition of the porphyrin fractions of Messel oil shale was also studied as a function of depth. A porphyrin acids/alkylporphyrins ratio varying from 0.35 to 24.8 demonstrated that the apparent homogeneity of the shale is not reflected on the molecular scale. This was confirmed when the abundance of the twenty individual porphyrins of known structure was measured along the core. Significant correlations between individual porphyrins were found: fossils of bacteriochlorophylls d, homolog pairs of porphyrins (3-H/3-ethyl), etc.

  19. Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) and smoldering multiple myeloma (SMM): novel biological insights and development of early treatment strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kristinsson, Sigurdur Y.

    2011-01-01

    Monoclonal gammopathy of unknown significance (MGUS) and smoldering multiple myeloma (SMM) are asymptomatic plasma cell dyscrasias, with a propensity to progress to symptomatic MM. In recent years there have been improvements in risk stratification models (involving molecular markers) of both disorders, which have led to better understanding of the biology and probability of progression of MGUS and SMM. In the context of numerous molecular events and heterogeneous risk of progression, developing individualized risk profiles for patients with MGUS and SMM represents an ongoing challenge that has to be addressed by prospective clinical monitoring and extensive correlative science. In this review we discuss the current standard of care of patients with MGUS and SMM, the use of risk models, including flow cytometry and free-light chain analyses, for predicting risk of progression. Emerging evidence from molecular studies on MGUS and SMM, involving cytogenetics, gene-expression profiling, and microRNA as well as molecular imaging is described. Finally, future directions for improving individualized management of MGUS and SMM patients, as well as the potential for developing early treatment strategies designed to delay and prevent development of MM are discussed. PMID:21441462

  20. Snakeheads (Pisces, Channidae): A biological synopsis and risk assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Courtenay, Walter R.; Williams, James D.

    2004-01-01

    Snakeheads (family Channidae) are airbreathing freshwater fishes containing two genera, Channa with 26 species native to Asia, Malaysia, and Indonesia; and Parachanna with 3 species native to tropical Africa. Some snakeheads are small, reaching about 17 centimeters, but most are much larger, the largest reported to be 1.8 meters in length. All are considered thrust predators with most being piscivorous as adults. A few of the smaller snakeheads and colorful juveniles of some larger ones have been available to hobbyists through the aquarium fish trade. Several species are highly valued as food fishes within parts of their native ranges, especially in Asia where they are an important part of capture fisheries and aquaculture. Because of these uses by humans, introductions far beyond native ranges have occurred. One Asian snakehead has been established in Oahu, Hawaii, since before 1900. Another species was discovered established in southeastern Florida in 2000, and a third in a pond in Maryland in 2002. Others have been captured from natural waters of the United States without evidence of reproduction and likely represent released aquarium fishes. That snakeheads at or near sexual maturity were being sold alive in ethnic food markets raised fears that they could be introduced into novel waters. These concerns led to this study on the biology of snakeheads. A risk assessment is included that examines environmental and related aspects of snakehead introductions.

  1. Methods for isolation and viability assessment of biological organisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Letant, Sonia Edith; Baker, Sarah Elyse; Bond, Tiziana; Chang, Allan Shih-Ping

    2015-02-03

    Isolation of biological or chemical organisms can be accomplished using a surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) system. The SERS system can be a single or a stacked plurality of photonic crystal membranes with noble-metal lined through pores for flowing analyte potentially containing the biological or chemical organisms. The through pores can be adapted to trap individual biological or chemical organisms and emit SERS spectra, which can then be detected by a detector and further analyzed for viability of the biological or chemical organism.

  2. Assessing Genetic Variants of Uncertain Significance: The Example of Lynch Syndrome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Lene Juel; Heinen, Christopher D.

    2014-01-01

    A significant fraction of cancer is the result of genetic predisposition. Frequently, in patients with suspected cancer predisposition, subtle variations are found in predisposing genes. Currently, it is often not possible to determine whether such variants are pathogenic, thus they are termed...... variants of uncertain significance (VUS). This leads to anxiety in carriers and noncarrying relatives alike, as well as to an unnecessary burden to preventive healthcare. The establishment of procedures that enable the diagnostic assessment of VUSs in individuals are discussed and hereditary colorectal...... cancer syndrome, Lynch syndrome, is used as an example. This challenge is addressed by illustrating the importance of combining genetic and functional data in future strategies to assess VUS. The proposed strategies combine clinical genetic, analytical, functional and in silico approaches....

  3. Assessing the calorific significance of episodes of human cannibalism in the Palaeolithic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cole, James

    2017-01-01

    Episodes of Palaeolithic cannibalism have frequently been defined as ‘nutritional’ in nature, but with little empirical evidence to assess their dietary significance. This paper presents a nutritional template that offers a proxy calorie value for the human body. When applied to the Palaeolithic record, the template provides a framework for assessing the dietary value of prehistoric cannibalistic episodes compared to the faunal record. Results show that humans have a comparable nutritional value to those faunal species that match our typical body weight, but significantly lower than a range of fauna often found in association with anthropogenically modified hominin remains. This could suggest that the motivations behind hominin anthropophagy may not have been purely nutritionally motivated. It is proposed here that the comparatively low nutritional value of hominin cannibalism episodes support more socially or culturally driven narratives in the interpretation of Palaeolithic cannibalism. PMID:28383521

  4. Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact: Kalina Geothermal Demonstration Project Steamboat Springs, Nevada

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    N/A

    1999-02-22

    The Department of Energy (DOE) has prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) to provide the DOE and other public agency decision makers with the environmental documentation required to take informed discretionary action on the proposed Kalina Geothermal Demonstration project. The EA assesses the potential environmental impacts and cumulative impacts, possible ways to minimize effects associated with partial funding of the proposed project, and discusses alternatives to DOE actions. The DOE will use this EA as a basis for their decision to provide financial assistance to Exergy, Inc. (Exergy), the project applicant. Based on the analysis in the EA, DOE has determined that the proposed action is not a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human or physical environment, within the meaning of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969. Therefore, the preparation of an environmental impact statement is not required and DOE is issuing this Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI).

  5. Self-Assessment and Appearance Evaluation in Student Group as Predictors in Relationships of Interpersonal Significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Labunskaya V.A.

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The paper attempts to integrate the concept of relationships of interpersonal significance, approaches to the correlation between physical appearance and life satisfaction, as well as several concepts of interpersonal cognition, self-assessment and evaluations of other people’s physical appearance. It introduces the concept of “insignificant/significant assessor of appearance” and argues that among the factors that turn a group member into the “insignificant/significant assessor of appearance” are evaluations, self-evaluations and group evaluations of physical appearance. The research described in the paper involved 89 students aged 19—21 (M=20 years, 66 females and 23 males, members of five groups that have been studying together for three years. The methods employed in the study included: “The Evaluation/Content Interpretation of Appearance and its Correspondence with Gender/Age Constructs”, a technique developed by V.A. Labunskaya; a modification of a sociometric test that helped reveal “insignificant/significant assessors of appearance”. Also, nonparametric mathematical methods were used to carry out comparative analysis. The outcomes show that there are considerable differences between the self-assessments, evaluations of physical appearance of those group members who are “significant assessors of appearance”, and group evaluations of their appearance.

  6. In Silico Systems Biology Analysis of Variants of Uncertain Significance in Lynch Syndrome Supports the Prioritization of Functional Molecular Validation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borras, Ester; Chang, Kyle; Pande, Mala; Cuddy, Amanda; Bosch, Jennifer L; Bannon, Sarah A; Mork, Maureen E; Rodriguez-Bigas, Miguel A; Taggart, Melissa W; Lynch, Patrick M; You, Y Nancy; Vilar, Eduardo

    2017-10-01

    Lynch syndrome (LS) is a genetic condition secondary to germline alterations in the DNA mismatch repair (MMR) genes with 30% of changes being variants of uncertain significance (VUS). Our aim was to perform an in silico reclassification of VUS from a large single institutional cohort that will help prioritizing functional validation. A total of 54 VUS were detected with 33 (61%) novel variants. We integrated family history, pathology, and genetic information along with supporting evidence from eight different in silico tools at the RNA and protein level. Our assessment allowed us to reclassify 54% (29/54) of the VUS as probably damaging, 13% (7/54) as possibly damaging, and 28% (15/54) as probably neutral. There are more than 1,000 VUS reported in MMR genes and our approach facilitates the prioritization of further functional efforts to assess the pathogenicity to those classified as probably damaging. Cancer Prev Res; 10(10); 580-7. ©2017 AACR. ©2017 American Association for Cancer Research.

  7. Environmental tipping points significantly affect the cost−benefit assessment of climate policies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Yongyang; Judd, Kenneth L.; Lenton, Timothy M.; Lontzek, Thomas S.; Narita, Daiju

    2015-01-01

    Most current cost−benefit analyses of climate change policies suggest an optimal global climate policy that is significantly less stringent than the level required to meet the internationally agreed 2 °C target. This is partly because the sum of estimated economic damage of climate change across various sectors, such as energy use and changes in agricultural production, results in only a small economic loss or even a small economic gain in the gross world product under predicted levels of climate change. However, those cost−benefit analyses rarely take account of environmental tipping points leading to abrupt and irreversible impacts on market and nonmarket goods and services, including those provided by the climate and by ecosystems. Here we show that including environmental tipping point impacts in a stochastic dynamic integrated assessment model profoundly alters cost−benefit assessment of global climate policy. The risk of a tipping point, even if it only has nonmarket impacts, could substantially increase the present optimal carbon tax. For example, a risk of only 5% loss in nonmarket goods that occurs with a 5% annual probability at 4 °C increase of the global surface temperature causes an immediate two-thirds increase in optimal carbon tax. If the tipping point also has a 5% impact on market goods, the optimal carbon tax increases by more than a factor of 3. Hence existing cost−benefit assessments of global climate policy may be significantly underestimating the needs for controlling climate change. PMID:25825719

  8. Environmental tipping points significantly affect the cost-benefit assessment of climate policies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Yongyang; Judd, Kenneth L; Lenton, Timothy M; Lontzek, Thomas S; Narita, Daiju

    2015-04-14

    Most current cost-benefit analyses of climate change policies suggest an optimal global climate policy that is significantly less stringent than the level required to meet the internationally agreed 2 °C target. This is partly because the sum of estimated economic damage of climate change across various sectors, such as energy use and changes in agricultural production, results in only a small economic loss or even a small economic gain in the gross world product under predicted levels of climate change. However, those cost-benefit analyses rarely take account of environmental tipping points leading to abrupt and irreversible impacts on market and nonmarket goods and services, including those provided by the climate and by ecosystems. Here we show that including environmental tipping point impacts in a stochastic dynamic integrated assessment model profoundly alters cost-benefit assessment of global climate policy. The risk of a tipping point, even if it only has nonmarket impacts, could substantially increase the present optimal carbon tax. For example, a risk of only 5% loss in nonmarket goods that occurs with a 5% annual probability at 4 °C increase of the global surface temperature causes an immediate two-thirds increase in optimal carbon tax. If the tipping point also has a 5% impact on market goods, the optimal carbon tax increases by more than a factor of 3. Hence existing cost-benefit assessments of global climate policy may be significantly underestimating the needs for controlling climate change.

  9. Biological assessments for the low energy demonstration accelerator, 1996

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cross, S.

    1997-03-01

    This report discusses the biological impact to the area around the Los Alamos National Laboratory of the Low Energy Demonstration Accelerator. In particular the impact to the soils, water quality, vegetation, and wildlife are discussed.

  10. Assessing dependency using self-report and indirect measures: examining the significance of discrepancies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cogswell, Alex; Alloy, Lauren B; Karpinski, Andrew; Grant, David A

    2010-07-01

    The present study addressed convergence between self-report and indirect approaches to assessing dependency. We were moderately successful in validating an implicit measure, which was found to be reliable, orthogonal to 2 self-report instruments, and predictive of external criteria. This study also examined discrepancies between scores on self-report and implicit measures, and has implications for their significance. The possibility that discrepancies themselves are pathological was not supported, although discrepancies were associated with particular personality profiles. Finally, this study offered additional evidence for the relation between dependency and depressive symptomatology and identified implicit dependency as contributing unique variance in predicting past major depression.

  11. The presence of significant methylotrophic population in biological activated carbon of a full-scale drinking water plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Tae Gwan; Moon, Kyung-Eun; Cho, Kyung-Suk

    2013-12-01

    Methylotrophs within biological activated carbon (BAC) systems have not received attention although they are a valuable biological resource for degradation of organic pollutants. In this study, methylotrophic populations were monitored for four consecutive seasons in BAC of an actual drinking water plant, using ribosomal tag pyrosequencing. Methylotrophs constituted up to 5.6% of the bacterial community, and the methanotrophs Methylosoma and Methylobacter were most abundant. Community comparison showed that the temperature was an important factor affecting community composition, since it had an impact on the growth of particular methylotrophic genera. These results demonstrated that BAC possesses a substantial methylotrophic activity and harbors the relevant microbes.

  12. Interaction of ethanol with biological membranes: the formation of non-bilayer structures within the membrane interior and their significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gurtovenko, Andrey A; Anwar, Jamshed

    2009-02-19

    To gain a better understanding of how ethanol affects biological membranes, we have performed a series of atomic-scale molecular dynamics simulations of phospholipid membranes in aqueous solution with ethanol, whose concentration was varied from 2.5 to 30 mol % (lipid-free basis). At concentrations below the threshold value of approximately 12 mol % (30.5 v/v %) ethanol induces expansion of the membrane, accompanied by a drop in the membrane thickness as well as disordering and enhanced interdigitation of lipid acyl chains. These changes become more pronounced with increase in ethanol concentration, but the bilayer structure of the membrane is maintained. Above the threshold concentration the appearance of multiple transient defects in the lipid/water interface eventually gives rise to desorption and assembly of some of the lipids into non-bilayer structures within the membrane interior. These structures, being small and irregular, resemble inverted micelles and have a long-lived character. Furthermore, formation of the non-bilayer structures is accompanied by mixing of lipids that belong to the opposite membrane leaflets, thereby leading to irreversible changes in the membrane structure. Remarkably, this observation of the formation of non-bilayer structures within the membrane interior, being in good agreement with experimental data, is found to be robust with respect to both the simulation conditions (the system size and the presence of salt) and the type of lipids (phosphatidylcholine and phosphatidylethanolamine). We discuss the significance of these non-bilayer structures in relation with the well-known ability of ethanol to promote membrane hemifusion as well as with the possible role of the micelle-like structures as a delivery system for polar solutes and ions. The ethanol-induced "damage" to the bilayer structure also suggests that strong alcoholic beverages ( approximately 40 v/v %) might be potentially hazardous to the epithelial tissues of the human

  13. Mid-Columbia Coho Reintroduction Feasibility Project : Final Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    United States. Bonneville Power Administration; Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation; Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife

    1999-04-01

    Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) is proposing to fund research for 2 to 3 years on the feasibility of reintroducing coho salmon into mid-Columbia River basin tributaries. The research would take place in the Methow and Wenatchee river basins in Chelan and Okanogan Counties, Washington. BPA has prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) (DOE/EA-1282) evaluating the proposed project. Based on the analysis in the EA, BPA has determined that the proposed action is not a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment, within the meaning of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969. Therefore, the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is not required, and BPA is issuing this Finding of No Significant Impact.

  14. Tucannon River Spring Chinook Captive Broodstock Program Final Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    N/A

    2000-05-24

    Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) is proposing to fund the Tucannon River Spring Chinook Captive Broodstock Program, a small-scale production initiative designed to increase numbers of a weak but potentially recoverable population of spring chinook salmon in the Tucannon River in the State of Washington. BPA has prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) (DOE/EA-l326) evaluating the proposed project. Based on the analysis in the EA, BPA has determined that the proposed action is not a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment, within the meaning of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969. Therefore, the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is not required, and BPA is issuing this Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI).

  15. 75 FR 28232 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Hemlock Woolly...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-20

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological... hemlock woolly adelgid (Adelges tsugae). The environmental assessment considers the effects of, and...

  16. Assessment of genotoxic exposure in Swedish coke-oven work by different methods of biological monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reuterwall, C; Aringer, L; Elinder, C G; Rannug, A; Levin, J O; Juringe, L; Onfelt, A

    1991-04-01

    This study evaluated the results of several biological methods used simultaneously to monitor coke-oven work. Blood samples from 44 male coke-oven workers and 48 male referents, matched for age and smoking/snuff consumption, were examined for cytogenetic damage in lymphocytes. Urinary thioether excretion was determined for 62, and urine mutagenicity for 31, of the subjects, who followed a standardized diet during the urine sampling. Exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons varied with work task, the ambient air levels of benzo[a]pyrene sometimes exceeding 5 micrograms/m3. Cytogenetic damage, urine mutagenicity, and thioether excretion did not differ between the groups. The smokers, however, had significantly higher sister chromatid exchange frequencies, urine mutagenicity, and thioether excretion than the nonsmokers. The absence of biological indications of genotoxic exposure was unexpected and indicates that the studied methods are not adequate to assess the carcinogenic risks of Swedish coke-oven workers.

  17. Assessment of nitrogen and sulphur cycle bacteria and shrimp production in ponds treated with biological products

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thangapalam Jawahar Abraham

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To study the influence of biological products on the levels of nitrogen and sulphur cycle bacteria in shrimp culture systems of West Bengal, India. Methods: The pond water and sediment samples were analyzed for physico-chemical parameters as per standard methods. The bacteria involved in ammonification, nitrification, denitrification, sulphate reduction and sulphur oxidation were enumerated by most probable number technique. Results: The semi-intensive and modified extensive shrimp farms used a variety of biological products during various stages of production. No biological products were used in traditional farms. The water and sediment samples of modified extensive system recorded significantly higher mean heterotrophic bacterial counts. The counts of ammonia, nitrite and sulphur oxidizers, and nitrate and sulphate reducers varied among the systems. The cycling of nitrogen and sulphur appeared to be affected with the intensification of culture practices. Conclusions: The application of biological products in certain systems helped to maintain the bacteria involved in nitrogen and sulphur cycles and safe levels of ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. An assessment of these metabolically active bacteria in shrimp culture ponds and the application of right kind microbial products would help ameliorate the organic pollution in shrimp aquaculture.

  18. Assessment of significant psychological distress at the end of pregnancy and associated factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorén-Guerrero, L; Gascón-Catalán, A; Pasierb, D; Romero-Cardiel, M A

    2017-10-25

    The aim of this study is to study the prevalence of mental distress at the end of pregnancy and after birth and the impact of selected socio-demographic and obstetric factors. This is a cross-sectional study. The sample is consisted of 351 puerperal women at the age of 18 and over. Sociodemographic, obstetric variables were collected to detect significant psychological distress; the instrument used was General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-28). Logistic multivariable regressions were used to investigate associations. The prevalence of significant mental distress amounted to 81.2%, mostly related to social relationship and anxiety. The women who affirmed having more stress during pregnancy had too significantly increased emotional distress before the birth as well as during early puerperium, increasing somatic symptoms (p socio-demographic data, being an immigrant is the only protective factor reducing the social dysfunction in the last weeks of pregnancy (p stress experienced during pregnancy and parity. It is advisable to perform proper assessment of stress and significant psychological distress at the early stage of pregnancy and repeatedly later on until delivery. Information and support from professionals can help to decrease and prevent their negative impact on maternal and fetal health, as observed in the current evidence.

  19. Clinical significance of heart rate turbulence assessment in patients with chronic heart failure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szymanowska, Katarzyna; Piatkowska, Anna; Nowicka, Anna; Michalski, Marek; Dankowski, Rafał; Kandziora, Magdalena; Biegalski, Wojciech; Wierzchowiecki, Michał; Poprawski, Kajetan

    2008-12-01

    Heart rate turbulence (HRT) is modulated by the baroreceptor reflex, and it has been suggested that it could be used as a measure of autonomic dysfunction. Impaired HRT has a significant prognostic value in patients after myocardial infarction. The usefulness of HRT parameters in CHF patients has not yet been well established. To assess the relationship between HRT parameters, clinical course of CHF and selected biochemical markers with respect to their prognostic value in CHF patients. A 64 of 100 consecutive CHF patients, in whom it was possible to calculate HRT, were divided into four groups according to NYHA class. Uric acid (UA) and brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) concentrations were measured. Heart rate turbulence was analysed from 24-hour Holter ECG and characterised by two parameters: turbulence onset (TO) and turbulence slope (TS). The results of 20 healthy persons served as a control group. Follow-up examinations were performed after 6 and 12 months. In patients with CHF both HRT parameters (TO and TS) were significantly impaired in comparison to TO and TS in healthy subjects. A negative correlation between these parameters was found. A strong positive correlation between TO and NYHA class and a significant negative correlation between TS and BNP and UA concentrations were observed. There were 11 deaths during one-year follow-up. Patients who died due to CHF had significantly lower TS and higher TO values in comparison to survivors. Heart rate turbulence is impaired in CHF patients. HRT parameters show a significant correlation with some clinical factors: NYHA class, BNP and UA concentrations. Both HRT parameters, TO and TS, seem to be significant prognostic markers in patients with CHF.

  20. A Test of the Relationship between Reading Ability & Standardized Biology Assessment Scores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Denise A.

    2014-01-01

    Little empirical evidence suggested that independent reading abilities of students enrolled in biology predicted their performance on the Biology I Graduation End-of-Course Assessment (ECA). An archival study was conducted at one Indiana urban public high school in Indianapolis, Indiana, by examining existing educational assessment data to test…

  1. Anti-tick biological control agents: assessment and future perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samish, M.; Ginsberg, H.S.; Glazer, I.; Bowman, Alan. S.; Nuttall, Patricia A.

    2008-01-01

    Widespread and increasing resistance to most available acaracides threatens both global livestock industries and public health. This necessitates better understanding of ticks and the diseases they transmit in the development of new control strategies. Ticks: Biology, Disease and Control is written by an international collection of experts and covers in-depth information on aspects of the biology of the ticks themselves, various veterinary and medical tick-borne pathogens, and aspects of traditional and potential new control methods. A valuable resource for graduate students, academic researchers and professionals, the book covers the whole gamut of ticks and tick-borne diseases from microsatellites to satellite imagery and from exploiting tick saliva for therapeutic drugs to developing drugs to control tick populations. It encompasses the variety of interconnected fields impinging on the economically important and biologically fascinating phenomenon of ticks, the diseases they transmit and methods of their control.

  2. The Significance of Temperature Based Approach Over the Energy Based Approaches in the Buildings Thermal Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albatayneh, Aiman; Alterman, Dariusz; Page, Adrian; Moghtaderi, Behdad

    2017-05-01

    The design of low energy buildings requires accurate thermal simulation software to assess the heating and cooling loads. Such designs should sustain thermal comfort for occupants and promote less energy usage over the life time of any building. One of the house energy rating used in Australia is AccuRate, star rating tool to assess and compare the thermal performance of various buildings where the heating and cooling loads are calculated based on fixed operational temperatures between 20 °C to 25 °C to sustain thermal comfort for the occupants. However, these fixed settings for the time and temperatures considerably increase the heating and cooling loads. On the other hand the adaptive thermal model applies a broader range of weather conditions, interacts with the occupants and promotes low energy solutions to maintain thermal comfort. This can be achieved by natural ventilation (opening window/doors), suitable clothes, shading and low energy heating/cooling solutions for the occupied spaces (rooms). These activities will save significant amount of operating energy what can to be taken into account to predict energy consumption for a building. Most of the buildings thermal assessment tools depend on energy-based approaches to predict the thermal performance of any building e.g. AccuRate in Australia. This approach encourages the use of energy to maintain thermal comfort. This paper describes the advantages of a temperature-based approach to assess the building's thermal performance (using an adaptive thermal comfort model) over energy based approach (AccuRate Software used in Australia). The temperature-based approach was validated and compared with the energy-based approach using four full scale housing test modules located in Newcastle, Australia (Cavity Brick (CB), Insulated Cavity Brick (InsCB), Insulated Brick Veneer (InsBV) and Insulated Reverse Brick Veneer (InsRBV)) subjected to a range of seasonal conditions in a moderate climate. The time required for

  3. Clinical significance of C-reactive protein for assessment and outcomes of severe acute pancreatitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    REN Linan

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available ObjectiveTo study the change in serum CRP level in patients with severe acute pancreatitis (SAP, and to explore its clinical significance in predicting outcomes and assessing the severity of SAP. MethodsA retrospective analysis was performed on 52 SAP patients with complete case data and admitted to General Hospital of Shenyang Military Area Command from September 2013 to September 2014. Blood drawing was performed and serum CRP concentration was determined on admission and at 24, 48, 72, 96, 120, and 144 hours after admission. The pattern of its dynamic change was observed. ResultsSerum CRP level in SAP patients significantly increased, and had a positive correlation with clinical outcomes. Forty-two cases (80.77% gradually recovered with aggressive treatment and the serum CRP levels were also slowly reduced (P<0.05. The serum CRP levels in four death cases (7.7% had no significant decrease and was maintained at a high level (P<0.05. Six patients (11.53% had aggravated conditions and recovered after aggressive treatment; meanwhile, the serum CRP levels first increased and then decreased (P<0.05. ConclusionFor SAP patients, serum CRP level fluctuates as their conditions change and can be considered as an important reference index for evaluating the severity and judging the outcomes of SAP.

  4. Assessment of network perturbation amplitudes by applying high-throughput data to causal biological networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Florian

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background High-throughput measurement technologies produce data sets that have the potential to elucidate the biological impact of disease, drug treatment, and environmental agents on humans. The scientific community faces an ongoing challenge in the analysis of these rich data sources to more accurately characterize biological processes that have been perturbed at the mechanistic level. Here, a new approach is built on previous methodologies in which high-throughput data was interpreted using prior biological knowledge of cause and effect relationships. These relationships are structured into network models that describe specific biological processes, such as inflammatory signaling or cell cycle progression. This enables quantitative assessment of network perturbation in response to a given stimulus. Results Four complementary methods were devised to quantify treatment-induced activity changes in processes described by network models. In addition, companion statistics were developed to qualify significance and specificity of the results. This approach is called Network Perturbation Amplitude (NPA scoring because the amplitudes of treatment-induced perturbations are computed for biological network models. The NPA methods were tested on two transcriptomic data sets: normal human bronchial epithelial (NHBE cells treated with the pro-inflammatory signaling mediator TNFα, and HCT116 colon cancer cells treated with the CDK cell cycle inhibitor R547. Each data set was scored against network models representing different aspects of inflammatory signaling and cell cycle progression, and these scores were compared with independent measures of pathway activity in NHBE cells to verify the approach. The NPA scoring method successfully quantified the amplitude of TNFα-induced perturbation for each network model when compared against NF-κB nuclear localization and cell number. In addition, the degree and specificity to which CDK

  5. In situ combined chemical and biological assessment of estrogenic pollution in a water recycling system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chi, Yulang; Huang, Qiansheng; Zhang, Huanteng; Chen, Yajie; Dong, Sijun

    2016-05-01

    Estrogenic pollution and its control in aquatic systems have drawn substantial attention around the world. The chemical and biological assessment approaches currently utilized in the laboratory or field cannot give an integrated assessment of the pollution when used separately. In this study, in situ chemical and biological methods were combined to detect pollution in a water recycling system. Data for the water quality index (WQI) demonstrated that the water treatment resulted in the decline of pollution from upstream to downstream. Wild male Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus, was sampled in June and September. The concentrations of four common endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) were determined in the tilapia liver by chromatographic analysis methods. The level of 17β-estradiol (E2) declined from upstream to downstream in both months. In contrast, the levels of bisphenol A (BPA), di-(2-ethylhcxyl) phthalate (DEHP), and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) did not display this declining tendency. The highest relative expression of vitellogenin 1 (VTG1) was observed in tilapia from upstream, then the level significantly decreased along the water system. The relative expression levels of CYP1A1 in the water system were also significantly higher than that of the control. However, no declining trend could be observed along the water system. The change of VTG1 expression corresponded well with that of E2 levels in the tilapia liver. Overall, our study assessed the pollution by endocrine disruptors using chemical and biological data with good correspondence. This study also demonstrated the effectiveness of the water recycling system in eliminating estrogen pollution in municipal sewage. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  6. Assessing the biological potential of N2-fixing Leguminosae in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... fodder and grain production to support the growing local livestock and wildlife industries. Additionally, identifying native rhizobia in Botswana that alleviate water stress when in symbioses with legumes could be a first step to tapping the biological potential of the Leguminosae for increased yields in drier environments.

  7. Assessment of salivary flow rate: biologic variation and measure error.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jongerius, P.H.; Limbeek, J. van; Rotteveel, J.J.

    2004-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To investigate the applicability of the swab method in the measurement of salivary flow rate in multiple-handicap drooling children. To quantify the measurement error of the procedure and the biologic variation in the population. STUDY DESIGN: Cohort study. METHODS: In a repeated

  8. Funding needed for assessments of weed biological control

    Science.gov (United States)

    John L. Maron; Dean E. Pearson; Stephen M. Hovick; Walter P. Carson

    2010-01-01

    Invasive non-native plants are a serious economic and ecological problem worldwide, and major efforts are therefore devoted to reducing weed abundance in agricultural and natural settings. Effective options for reducing invasive abundance and spread are few, although one common approach is biological control - the introduction of specialist herbivores or pathogens from...

  9. How Important Is the Assessment of Practical Work? An Opinion Piece on the New Biology A-Level from BERG

    Science.gov (United States)

    Journal of Biological Education, 2014

    2014-01-01

    As education in England emerges from a major curriculum review (DfE 2013), the next few years will see significant changes in what is taught in schools and how this is assessed. As a core subject, under the current proposals, all students, from the beginning of primary school until age 16, will study science in some detail. Biology is an exciting,…

  10. Identifying potentially induced seismicity and assessing statistical significance in Oklahoma and California

    CERN Document Server

    McClure, Mark; Chiu, Kitkwan; Ranganath, Rajesh

    2016-01-01

    In this study, we develop a statistical method for identifying induced seismicity from large datasets and apply the method to decades of wastewater disposal and seismicity data in California and Oklahoma. The method is robust against a variety of potential pitfalls. The study regions are divided into gridblocks. We use a longitudinal study design, seeking associations between seismicity and wastewater injection along time-series within each gridblock. The longitudinal design helps control for non-random application of wastewater injection. We define a statistical model that is flexible enough to describe the seismicity observations, which have temporal correlation and high kurtosis. In each gridblock, we find the maximum likelihood estimate for a model parameter that relates induced seismicity hazard to total volume of wastewater injected each year. To assess significance, we compute likelihood ratio test statistics in each gridblock and each state, California and Oklahoma. Resampling is used to empirically d...

  11. Billy Shaw Dam and Reservoir : Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impacts.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    United States. Bonneville Power Administration; Shoshone-Paiute Tribes of the Duck Valley Reservation, Nevada.

    1997-03-01

    This notice announces BPA`s decision to fund the construction, operation, and maintenance of the Billy Shaw Dam and Reservoir on the Duck Valley Reservation. This project is part of a continuing effort to address system-wide fish and wildlife losses caused by the development of the hydropower system in the Columbia River Basin. BPA has prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) evaluating the potential environmental impacts of the proposed project. Based on the analysis in the EA, BPA has determined that the Proposed Action is not a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment, within the meaning of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969. Therefore, the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is not required and BPA is issuing this FONSI.

  12. Significance of CT scan and color Doppler duplex ultrasound in the assessment of Abernethy malformation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nacif, Lucas Souto; Paranaguá-Vezozzo, Denise Cerqueira; Galvão, Flávio Henrique Ferreira; Rocha, Manoel S; Andraus, Wellington; Carrilho, Flair Jose; D'Albuquerque, Luiz Carneiro

    2015-09-18

    Abernethy malformation is a rare congenital vascular abnormality in which the portal vein bypasses the liver and drains directly into the inferior vena cava. Diagnosis is complex and requires good quality imaging methods to identify details in systemic and portal circulation in order to establish diagnostic confirmation and treatment strategy. In this study we highlight the significance of the use of CT scans and Color Doppler Duplex Ultrasound for the diagnosis, treatment and evolution assessment in two adults with Abernethy malformation. The diagnosis and the treatment of two patients with Abernethy malformation by CT scan and Color Doppler Duplex Ultrasound is described. One patient was submitted to liver transplantation due to chronic liver disease and multiple nodules diagnosed as adenoma. The other patient had normal liver function and a mild neurological and psychomotor dysfunction, therefore we adopted clinical treatment and close liver parenchyma evaluation and nodule surveillance, using an imaging approach involving intercalating CT scan and Color Doppler Duplex Ultrasound every 6 months. We highlight some important direct and indirect findings of non-invasive imaging methods. Abernethy malformation requires meticulous image diagnosis to improve treatment and avoid iatrogenic procedures. CT scans and Color Doppler Duplex Ultrasound are both efficient methods for diagnosis, treatment planning and evolution assessment of patients with Abernethy malformation.

  13. Assessment of prognostic significance of cytoplasmic survivin expression in advanced oesophageal cancer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G Wallner

    2004-10-01

    Full Text Available Survivin is a member of the family of proteins, which inhibit apoptosis (inhibitor of apoptosis proteins - IAP. Expression of survivin was found in colorectal cancer, neuroblastoma, bladder cancer, non-small cell lung cancer, and breast cancer. There is some recent data indicating the correlation of poor prognosis and worse response to chemotherapy in patients with oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC expressing survivin. The aim of the present study was to assess survivin expression in cancerous tissue of patients with advanced OSCC and to test the potential correlation between survivin expression and clinicopathological data. Forty two patients (mean age 58.36+/-8.97 yrs, who were oesophagectomised due to squamous cell carcinoma of the thoracic oesophagus between 1998 and 2000, were retrospectively analysed. Cytoplasmic survivin expression, examined immunohistochemically, was found in 35 (83.33% cases. No statistically significant correlation between survivin expression in the tumour and patients' gender, TNM stage, or vascular involvement was noted. The mean survival of patients with cytoplasmic survivin expression (17.81+/-5.51 months was not statistically different to those with negative survivin staining (16+/-6.28 months as assessed by Mantel-Cox test (p=0.49. Univariate regression analysis revealed UICC staging as the only predictor of survival in the analysed group (p<0.05. These results indicate that the cytoplasmic survivin expression does not seem to be the prognostic factor in advanced cases of OSCC.

  14. Clinically significant discrepancies between sleep problems assessed by standard clinical tools and actigraphy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kjersti Marie Blytt

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Sleep disturbances are widespread among nursing home (NH patients and associated with numerous negative consequences. Identifying and treating them should therefore be of high clinical priority. No prior studies have investigated the degree to which sleep disturbances as detected by actigraphy and by the sleep-related items in the Cornell Scale for Depression in Dementia (CSDD and the Neuropsychiatric Inventory – Nursing Home version (NPI-NH provide comparable results. Such knowledge is highly needed, since both questionnaires are used in clinical settings and studies use the NPI-NH sleep item to measure sleep disturbances. For this reason, insight into their relative (disadvantages is valuable. Method Cross-sectional study of 83 NH patients. Sleep was objectively measured with actigraphy for 7 days, and rated by NH staff with the sleep items in the CSDD and the NPI-NH, and results were compared. McNemar's tests were conducted to investigate whether there were significant differences between the pairs of relevant measures. Cohen's Kappa tests were used to investigate the degree of agreement between the pairs of relevant actigraphy, NPI-NH and CSDD measures. Sensitivity and specificity analyses were conducted for each of the pairs, and receiver operating characteristics (ROC curves were designed as a plot of the true positive rate against the false positive rate for the diagnostic test. Results Proxy-raters reported sleep disturbances in 20.5% of patients assessed with NPI-NH and 18.1% (difficulty falling asleep, 43.4% (multiple awakenings and 3.6% (early morning awakenings of patients had sleep disturbances assessed with CSDD. Our results showed significant differences (p<0.001 between actigraphy measures and proxy-rated sleep by the NPI-NH and CSDD. Sensitivity and specificity analyses supported these results. Conclusions Compared to actigraphy, proxy-raters clearly underreported NH patients' sleep disturbances as assessed

  15. GROWTH ANALYSIS AND ASSESSMENT OF PIG’S BIOLOGICAL MAXIMUM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dragutin Vincek

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to determine a mathematical model which can be used to describe the growth of domestic animals in an attempt to predict the optimal time of slaughter/weight or the development of body parts or tissues and estimate the biological maximum. The study was conducted on 60 pigs (30 barrows and 30 gilts in the interval between the age of 49 and 215 days. By applying the generalized logistic function, the growth of live weight and tissues were described. The observed gilts reached the inflection point in approximately 121 days (I = 70.7 kg. The point at which the interval of intensive growth starts was at the age of approximately 42 days, (TB=17.35 kg and the saturation point the pigs reached at the age of 200.5 days (TC=126.74 kg. The estimated biological maximum weight of gilts was 179.79 kg. The barrows reached the inflection point in approximately 149 days (I=92.2 kg. The point at which the intensive interval of growth starts was estimated at the age of approximately 52 days (TB=22.93 kg, and the saturation point the barrows reached at the age of 245 days (TC=164.8 kg. The estimated biological maximum weight of barrows was 233.25 kg. Muscle tissue of gilts reached the inflection point (I = 28.46 kg in approximately 110 days. The point at which the interval of intensive growth of muscle tissue starts (TB=6.06 kg was estimated at approximately 53 days, and the saturation point of growth (TC=52.25 kg the muscle tissue of gilts reached at the age of 162 days. The estimated maximum biological growth of muscle tissue in gilts was 75.79 kg. The muscle tissue of barrows reached the inflection point (I=28.78 kg in approximately 118 days, the point at which the interval of intensive growth starts (TB=6.36 kg at the age of approximately 35 days. The saturation point of muscle tissue growth in barrows (TC=52.51 kg was reached at the age of 202 days. The estimated maximum biological growth of muscle tissue in barrows was 75.74 kg. The

  16. Assessing significant (> 30%) alopecia as a possible biomarker for stress in captive rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novak, Melinda A.; Menard, Mark T.; El-Mallah, Saif N.; Rosenberg, Kendra; Lutz, Corrine K.; Worlein, Julie; Coleman, Kris; Meyer, Jerrold S.

    2016-01-01

    Hair loss is common in macaque colonies. Very little is known about the relationship between psychological stress and hair loss. We initially examined alopecia and hair cortisol concentrations in 198 (89 male) rhesus macaques from three primate centers and demonstrated replicability of our previous finding that extensive alopecia (> 30% hair loss) is associated with increased chronic cortisol concentrations and significantly affected by facility. A subset of these monkeys (142 of which 67 were males) were sampled twice approximately 8 months apart allowing us to examine the hypotheses that gaining hair should be associated with decreases in cortisol concentrations and vice versa. Hair loss was digitally scored using ImageJ software for the first sample. Then visual assessment was used to examine the second sample, resulting in 3 categories of coat condition: 1) monkeys that remained fully haired, 2) monkeys that remained alopecic (with more than 30% hair loss), or 3) monkeys that showed more than a 15% increase in hair. The sample size for the group that lost hair was too small to be analyzed. Consistent with our hypothesis, monkeys that gained hair showed a significant reduction in hair cortisol concentrations but this effect only held for females. Coat condition changed little across sampling periods with only 25 (11 male) monkeys showing a greater than 15% gain of hair. Twenty (7 male) monkeys remained alopecic, whereas 97 (49 males) remained fully haired. Hair cortisol was highly correlated across samples for the monkeys that retained their status (remained alopecic or retained their hair). PMID:27008590

  17. The Mechanical and Biological Properties of Chitosan Scaffolds for Tissue Regeneration Templates Are Significantly Enhanced by Chitosan from Gongronella butleri

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiroshi Tamura

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Chitosan with a molecular weight (MW of 104 Da and 13% degree of acetylation (DA was extracted from the mycelia of the fungus Gongronella butleri USDB 0201 grown in solid substrate fermentation and used to prepare scaffolds by the freeze-drying method. The mechanical and biological properties of the fungal chitosan scaffolds were evaluated and compared with those of scaffolds prepared using chitosans obtained from shrimp and crab shells and squid bone plates (MW 105-106 Da and DA 10-20%. Under scanning electron microscopy, it was observed that all scaffolds had average pore sizes of approximately 60-90 mm in diameter. Elongated pores were observed in shrimp chitosan scaffolds and polygonal pores were found in crab, squid and fungal chitosan scaffolds. The physico-chemical properties of the chitosans had an effect on the formation of pores in the scaffolds, that consequently influenced the mechanical and biological properties of the scaffolds. Fungal chitosan scaffolds showed excellent mechanical, water absorption and lysozyme degradation properties, whereas shrimp chitosan scaffolds (MW 106Da and DA 12% exhibited the lowest water absorption properties and lysozyme degradation rate. In the evaluation of biocompatibility of chitosan scaffolds, the ability of fibroblast NIH/3T3 cells to attach on all chitosan scaffolds was similar, but the proliferation of cells with polygonal morphology was faster on crab, squid and fungal chitosan scaffolds than on shrimp chitosan scaffolds. Therefore fungal chitosan scaffold, which has excellent mechanical and biological properties, is the most suitable scaffold to use as a template for tissue regeneration.

  18. Global Data Quality Assessment and the Situated Nature of “Best” Research Practices in Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabina Leonelli

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper reflects on the relation between international debates around data quality assessment and the diversity characterising research practices, goals and environments within the life sciences. Since the emergence of molecular approaches, many biologists have focused their research, and related methods and instruments for data production, on the study of genes and genomes. While this trend is now shifting, prominent institutions and companies with stakes in molecular biology continue to set standards for what counts as ‘good science’ worldwide, resulting in the use of specific data production technologies as proxy for assessing data quality. This is problematic considering (1 the variability in research cultures, goals and the very characteristics of biological systems, which can give rise to countless different approaches to knowledge production; and (2 the existence of research environments that produce high-quality, significant datasets despite not availing themselves of the latest technologies. Ethnographic research carried out in such environments evidences a widespread fear among researchers that providing extensive information about their experimental set-up will affect the perceived quality of their data, making their findings vulnerable to criticisms by better-resourced peers. These fears can make scientists resistant to sharing data or describing their provenance. To counter this, debates around Open Data need to include critical reflection on how data quality is evaluated, and the extent to which that evaluation requires a localised assessment of the needs, means and goals of each research environment.

  19. The Use of D-Criteria to Assess Meteor Shower Significance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moorhead, Althea V.

    2017-01-01

    In theory, a meteor shower can be distinguished from the sporadic meteor background by its short duration and orbital similarity. In practice, the duration and strength of a shower and the orbital similarity between its constituent meteors varies widely between showers. Further complicating matters is the anisotropy of the sporadic background. These combined factors make it difficult to distinguish between shower and sporadic meteors with a single, static set of criteria. The orbital similarity, or D-, parameters are often used to assess the relationship between meteors [1,2,3]. The more dissimilar two orbits are, the higher their computed D value will be; generally, meteors are considered related if their D-parameter falls below some cutoff value [4]. However, this approach will include some sporadic meteors, and when a weak shower lies near a sporadic source, the false positive rate for shower association can be quite high. Additionally, this cutoff approach does not assess whether the shower itself is significant. We present a method for using D-parameters to extract showers from a dataset that automatically takes shower strength into account and tests for significance [5]. We accomplish this by calculating the false positive rate for shower association using "shower analogs," which are identical to the original shower except in solar longitude. This method is applied to a set of more than 30,000 meteors detected by the NASA All-Sky Fireball Network [6] and the Southern Ontario Meteor Network (SOMN) [7]. We previously detected 29 showers in our data using this method [5]; now, with another year of data, we have several additional detections. Figure 1 presents one example: the 2016 July gamma Draconid outburst. There are several benefits to using our method. First, it provides a test of shower significance (see Fig. 2 for an example of a non-detection). Second, it quantifies the probability that a meteor belongs to a given shower as a function of D

  20. Critical Assessment of Information Extraction Systems in Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Blaschke

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available An increasing number of groups are now working in the area of text mining, focusing on a wide range of problems and applying both statistical and linguistic approaches. However, it is not possible to compare the different approaches, because there are no common standards or evaluation criteria; in addition, the various groups are addressing different problems, often using private datasets. As a result, it is impossible to determine how well the existing systems perform, and particularly what performance level can be expected in real applications. This is similar to the situation in text processing in the late 1980s, prior to the Message Understanding Conferences (MUCs. With the introduction of a common evaluation and standardized evaluation metrics as part of these conferences, it became possible to compare approaches, to identify those techniques that did or did not work and to make progress. This progress has resulted in a common pipeline of processes and a set of shared tools available to the general research community. The field of biology is ripe for a similar experiment. Inspired by this example, the BioLINK group (Biological Literature, Information and Knowledge [1] is organizing a CASP-like evaluation for the text data-mining community applied to biology. The two main tasks specifically address two major bottlenecks for text mining in biology: (1 the correct detection of gene and protein names in text; and (2 the extraction of functional information related to proteins based on the GO classification system. For further information and participation details, see http://www.pdg.cnb.uam.es/BioLink/BioCreative.eval.html

  1. Surface functionalization of bioactive glasses with natural molecules of biological significance, part II: Grafting of polyphenols extracted from grape skin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xin; Ferraris, Sara; Prenesti, Enrico; Verné, Enrica

    2013-12-01

    Polyphenols, as one of the most important family of phytochemicals protective substances from grape fruit, possess various biological activities and health-promoting benefits, for example: inhibition of some degenerative diseases, cardiovascular diseases and certain types of cancers, reduction of plasma oxidative stress and slowing aging. The combination of polyphenols and biomaterials may have good potential to reach good bioavailability and controlled release, as well as to give biological signaling properties to the biomaterial surfaces. In this research, conventional solvent extraction was developed for obtaining polyphenols from dry grape skins. The Folin&Ciocalteu method was used to determine the amount of total polyphenols in the extracts. Surface functionalization of two bioactive glasses (SCNA and CEL2) was performed by grafting the extracted polyphenols on their surfaces. The effectiveness of the functionalization was tested by UV spectroscopy, which analyzes the amount of polyphenols in the uptake solution (before and after functionalization) and on solid samples, and XPS, which analyzes the presence of phenols on the material surface.

  2. Groundwater's significance to changing hydrology, water chemistry, and biological communities of a floodplain ecosystem, Everglades, South Florida, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harvey, J.W.; McCormick, P.V.

    2009-01-01

    The Everglades (Florida, USA) is one of the world's larger subtropical peatlands with biological communities adapted to waters low in total dissolved solids and nutrients. Detecting how the pre-drainage hydrological system has been altered is crucial to preserving its functional attributes. However, reliable tools for hindcasting historic conditions in the Everglades are limited. A recent synthesis demonstrates that the proportion of surface-water inflows has increased relative to precipitation, accounting for 33% of total inputs compared with 18% historically. The largest new source of water is canal drainage from areas of former wetlands converted to agriculture. Interactions between groundwater and surface water have also increased, due to increasing vertical hydraulic gradients resulting from topographic and water-level alterations on the otherwise extremely flat landscape. Environmental solute tracer data were used to determine groundwater's changing role, from a freshwater storage reservoir that sustained the Everglades ecosystem during dry periods to a reservoir of increasingly degraded water quality. Although some of this degradation is attributable to increased discharge of deep saline groundwater, other mineral sources such as fertilizer additives and peat oxidation have made a greater contribution to water-quality changes that are altering mineral-sensitive biological communities. ?? Springer-Verlag 2008.

  3. A biologic approach to environmental assessment and epidemiology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Smith, Thomas J; Kriebel, David

    2010-01-01

    .... The two key fields of study on this issue, environmental epidemiology and exposure assessment, are still given separate names because of their separate historical roots and scientific traditions...

  4. Positive Selection or Free to Vary? Assessing the Functional Significance of Sequence Change Using Molecular Dynamics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jane R Allison

    Full Text Available Evolutionary arms races between pathogens and their hosts may be manifested as selection for rapid evolutionary change of key genes, and are sometimes detectable through sequence-level analyses. In the case of protein-coding genes, such analyses frequently predict that specific codons are under positive selection. However, detecting positive selection can be non-trivial, and false positive predictions are a common concern in such analyses. It is therefore helpful to place such predictions within a structural and functional context. Here, we focus on the p19 protein from tombusviruses. P19 is a homodimer that sequesters siRNAs, thereby preventing the host RNAi machinery from shutting down viral infection. Sequence analysis of the p19 gene is complicated by the fact that it is constrained at the sequence level by overprinting of a viral movement protein gene. Using homology modeling, in silico mutation and molecular dynamics simulations, we assess how non-synonymous changes to two residues involved in forming the dimer interface-one invariant, and one predicted to be under positive selection-impact molecular function. Interestingly, we find that both observed variation and potential variation (where a non-synonymous change to p19 would be synonymous for the overprinted movement protein does not significantly impact protein structure or RNA binding. Consequently, while several methods identify residues at the dimer interface as being under positive selection, MD results suggest they are functionally indistinguishable from a site that is free to vary. Our analyses serve as a caveat to using sequence-level analyses in isolation to detect and assess positive selection, and emphasize the importance of also accounting for how non-synonymous changes impact structure and function.

  5. Biology Needs a Modern Assessment System for Professional Productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDade, Lucinda A.; Maddison, David R.; Guralnick, Robert; Piwowar, Heather A.; Jameson, Mary Liz; Helgen, Kristofer M.; Herendeen, Patrick S.; Hill, Andrew; Vis, Morgan L.

    2011-01-01

    Stimulated in large part by the advent of the Internet, research productivity in many academic disciplines has changed dramatically over the last two decades. However, the assessment system that governs professional success has not kept pace, creating a mismatch between modes of scholarly productivity and academic assessment criteria. In this…

  6. Reliability, Validity, and Significance of Assessment of Sense of Contribution in the Workplace

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiro Takaki

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to assess the validity and reliability of the Sense of Contribution Scale (SCS, a newly developed, 7-item questionnaire used to measure sense of contribution in the workplace. Workers at 272 organizations answered questionnaires that included the SCS. Because of non-participation or missing data, the number of subjects included in the analyses for internal consistency and validity varied from 1,675 to 2,462 (response rates 54.6%–80.2%. Fifty-four workers were included in the analysis of test–retest reliability (response rate, 77.1%. The SCS showed high internal consistency (Cronbach’s α coefficients in men and women were 0.85 and 0.86, respectively and test–retest reliability (intraclass correlation coefficient = 0.91. Significant (p < 0.001, positive, moderate correlations were found between the SCS score and scores for organization-based self-esteem and work engagement in both genders, which support the SCS’s convergent and discriminant validity. The criterion validity of the SCS was supported by the finding that in both genders, the SCS scores were significantly (p < 0.05 and inversely associated with psychological distress and sleep disturbance in crude and in multivariable analyses that adjusted for demographics, organization-based self-esteem, work engagement, effort–reward ratio, workplace bullying, and procedural and interactional justice. The SCS is a psychometrically satisfactory measure of sense of contribution in the workplace. The SCS provides a new and useful instrument to measure sense of contribution, which is independently associated with mental health in workers, for studies in organizational science, occupational health psychology and occupational medicine.

  7. Policy implications of select student characteristics and their influence on the Florida biology end-of-course assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertolotti, Janine Cecelia

    In an attempt to improve student achievement in science in Florida, the Florida Department of Education implemented end-of-course (EOC) assessments in biology during the 2011-2012 academic school year. Although this first administration would only account for 30% of the student's overall final course grade in biology, subsequent administrations would be accompanied by increasing stakes for students, teachers, and schools. Therefore, this study sought to address gaps in empirical evidence as well as discuss how educational policy will potentially impact on teacher evaluation and professional development, student retention and graduation rates, and school accountability indicators. This study explored four variables- reading proficiency, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and gender- to determine their influence and relationship on biology achievement on the Biology I EOC assessment at a Title 1 school. To do so, the results of the Biology I EOC assessment administered during the Spring 2012 school year was obtained from a small, rural Title 1 high school in North Florida. Additional data regarding each student's qualification for free and reduced-price lunch, FCAT Reading developmental scale scores, FCAT Reading level, grade level, gender, and ethnicity were also collected for the causal-comparative exploratory study. Of the 178 students represented, 48% qualified for free and reduced-price lunch, 54% were female, and 55% scored at FCAT Reading level 3 or higher. Additionally, 59% were White and 37% Black. A combination of descriptive statistics and other statistical procedures such as independent samples one-tailed t-test, one-way ANOVAs, ANCOVAs, multipleregression, and a Pearson r correlation was utilized in the analysis, with a significance level set at 0.05. Results indicate that of all four variables, FCAT Reading proficiency was the sole variable, after adjusting for other variables; that had a significant impact on biology achievement. Students with higher

  8. Surface water drainage system. Environmental assessment and finding of no significant impact

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1996-05-01

    This Environmental Assessment (EA) is written pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The document identifies and evaluates the action proposed to correct deficiencies in, and then to maintain, the surface water drainage system serving the Department of Energy`s Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site (Site), located north of Golden, Colorado. Many of the activities proposed would not normally be subject to this level of NEPA documentation. However, in many cases, maintenance of the system has been deferred to the point that wetlands vegetation has become established in some ditches and culverts, creating wetlands. The proposed activities would damage or remove some of these wetlands in order to return the drainage system to the point that it would be able to fully serve its intended function - stormwater control. The Department of Energy (DOE) regulations require that activities affecting environmentally sensitive areas like wetlands be the subject of an EA. Most portions of the surface water drainage system are presently inadequate to convey the runoff from a 100-year storm event. As a result, such an event would cause flooding across much of the Site and possibly threaten the integrity of the dams at the terminal ponds. Severe flooding would not only cause damage to facilities and equipment, but could also facilitate the transport of contaminants from individual hazardous substance sites (IHSSs). Uncontrolled flow through the A- and B-series ponds could cause contaminated sediments to become suspended and carried downstream. Additionally, high velocity flood flows significantly increase erosion losses.

  9. Significance of the ionized calcium measurement to assess calcium status in osteopenic/osteoporosis postmenopausal outpatients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guiducci, Letizia; Maffei, Silvia; Sabatino, Laura; Zyw, Luc; Battaglia, Debora; Vannucci, Alessandro; Di Cecco, Pietro; Vassalle, Cristina

    2017-05-01

    Evaluation of calcium status is important in the osteoporotic risk assessment. Although guidelines indicate total calcium (tCa) as first-line measurement, directly measured ionized calcium (m-iCa), considered as the gold standard, is more and more often required. Aim of this study is to evaluate the agreement between m-iCa, tCa and iCa calculated from a formula based on total calcium and albumin (c-iCa) in osteopenic/osteoporotic postmenopausal outpatients. A total of 140 postmenopausal outpatients, 41 osteopenic (OPN) and 99 osteoporotic (OP) were enrolled. Levels of tCa, m-iCa, c-iCa, total protein and albumin, vitamin D (25-OHD), parathyroid hormone 1-84 (PTH), bone alkaline phosphatase, osteocalcin and serum collagen type 1 cross-linked C-telopeptide (CTX) were also measured. There were no statistically significant differences between OPN and OP groups regarding values of tCa, m-iCa, and c-iCa, 25-OHD and PTH. However, OP women had lower levels of CTX (p calcium status in postmenopausal outpatients, but reflexive calcium testing strategy for m-iCa test is necessary to women presenting the low or high extremes of tCa levels, or in women with suspected PHPT.

  10. Peerwise Provides Significant Academic Benefits to Biological Science Students across Diverse Learning Tasks, but with Minimal Instructor Intervention

    Science.gov (United States)

    McQueen, H. A.; Shields, C.; Finnegan, D. J.; Higham, J.; Simmen, M. W.

    2014-01-01

    We demonstrate that student engagement with PeerWise, an online tool that allows students to author and answer multiple-choice questions (MCQs), is associated with enhanced academic performance across diverse assessment types on a second year Genetics course. Benefits were consistent over three course deliveries, with differential benefits…

  11. Adding biological realism to assessments of landscape connectivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Researchers have long appreciated the practical value of connectivity and source-sink analyses. The importance of these assessments for conservation, planning, and reserve design has motivated many empirical and simulation studies. But there are few modeling tools available that ...

  12. 77 FR 46373 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Hemlock Woolly...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-08-03

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological... of Symnus coniferarum into the eastern United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce...

  13. T lymphocytes and iron overload: novel correlations of possible significance to the biology of the immunological system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria de Sousa

    1992-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper is written in the context of our changing preception of the immunological system as a system with possible biological roles exceding the prevailung view of a system concerned principally with the defense against external pathogens. The view discussed here relates the immunological system inextricably to the metabolism of iron, the circulation of the blood and the resolution of the evolutionary paradox created by oxygen and iron. Indirect evidence for this inextricable relationship between the two systems can be derived from the discrepancy between the theoretical quasi-impossibility of the existence of an iron deficiency state in the adult and the reality of the WHO numbers of people in the world with iron deficiency anemia. With mounting evidence that TNF, IL-1, and T lymphocyte cytokines affect hemopoieisis and iron metabolism it is possible that the reported discrepancy is a reflection of that inextricable interdependence between the two systems in the face of infection. Further direct evidence for a relationship between T cell subset numbers and iron metabolism is presented from the results of a study of T cell populations in patients with hereditary hemochromatosis. The recent finding of a correlation between low CD8+ lymphocite numbers, liver demage associated with HCVpositivity and severity of iron overload in B-thalassemia major patients (umpublished data of RW Grandy; P. Giardina, M. Hilgartner concludes this review.

  14. Next Generation Risk Assessment: Incorporation of Recent Advances in Molecular, Computational, and Systems Biology (Final Report)

    Science.gov (United States)

    EPA announced the release of the final report, Next Generation Risk Assessment: Incorporation of Recent Advances in Molecular, Computational, and Systems Biology. This report describes new approaches that are faster, less resource intensive, and more robust that can help ...

  15. A preliminary biological assessment of Long Lake National Wildlife Refuge Complex, North Dakota

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report represents an initial biological assessment of wetland conditions on Long Lake National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), Slade NWR, and Florence Lake NWR that was...

  16. Workshop on biological assessment and monitoring evaluation and models (ICP Waters report 50/99)

    OpenAIRE

    Raddum, G.; Rosseland, B. O.; Bowman, J.

    1999-01-01

    The report presents the papers and conclusions from the "Workshop on biological assessment and monitoring evaluation and models", arranged by the International Cooperative Programme on Assessment and Monitoring of Acidification of Rivers and Lakes (ICP Waters) and the International Cooperative programme on Integrated Monitoring (ICP IM). The workshop was held in October 1998 in Zakopane, Poland. The workshop agreed upon the necessity of combining physico-chemical and biological monitoring. Th...

  17. Soil-plant interrelations: the significance of soil degradation and the risk assessment methodology for salinization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hagyó, A.; Tóth, T.; Bloem, E.; Zee, van der S.E.A.T.M.; Horváth, E.

    2008-01-01

    Numerous methodologies are used in the EU Member States to assess the risk for different soil threats related to various agricultural practices (erosion, salinisation, organic matter decline, compaction and landslides). Our aim was to evaluate the risk assessment methodologies (RAMs) utilized for

  18. 77 FR 76050 - Draft Environmental Assessment and Preliminary Finding of No Significant Impact Concerning a...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-12-26

    ... HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration Draft Environmental Assessment and Preliminary Finding of No... the availability for public comment of the Agency's draft environmental assessment (EA) of the... produced and grown- out in the physically contained freshwater culture facilities specified in the sponsor...

  19. Assessment of the Biological Treatability of Black Tea Processing ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The anaerobic degradability of tea beverage processing effluent was assessed using a stationary upflow anaerobic filter. The filter, with an active column of 1.2m height, inner diameter of 100 mm and filled with rock as the attachment medium was operated at room temperature ranging between 20-250C throughout the ...

  20. Biology and preliminary host range assessment of two potential kudzu biological control agents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frye, Matthew J; Hough-Goldstein, Judith; Sun, Jiang-Hua

    2007-12-01

    Two insect species from China, Gonioctena tredecimmaculata (Jacoby) (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) and Ornatalcides (Mesalcidodes) trifidus (Pascoe) (Coleoptera: Curculionidae), were studied in quarantine in the United States as potential biological control agents for kudzu, Pueraria montana variety lobata (Willd.) Maesen and S. Almeida. Adults of G. tredecimmaculata were ovoviviparous and reproduced throughout the summer, producing offspring that had an obligate adult diapause. In no-choice tests, adult and larval G. tredecimmaculata rejected most of the plant species tested, but consumed foliage and completed their life cycle on soybean (Glycine max L. Merr.) and on a native woodland plant, hog-peanut (Amphicarpaea bracteata L. Fernald), which are in the same subtribe as kudzu (Glycininae). Insects showed similar responses to field- and greenhouse-grown soybean and kudzu foliage, despite measurable differences in leaf traits: field-grown foliage of both plants had greater leaf toughness, higher total carbon content, higher trichome density, and lower water content than greenhouse foliage. O. trifidus adults also rejected most of the plants tested but fed on and severely damaged potted soybean and hog-peanut plants in addition to kudzu. Further tests in China are needed to determine whether these species will accept nontarget host plants under open-field conditions.

  1. 78 FR 21919 - Finding of No Significant Impact and Final Programmatic Environmental Assessment for Army 2020...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-04-12

    ... Programmatic Environmental Assessment for Army 2020 Force Structure Realignment (PEA), supporting studies, and... Impact Statement; therefore, one will not be prepared. An electronic version of the FNSI and PEA is...

  2. 75 FR 36701 - Issuance of Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for Modification of...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-06-28

    ... alternative to the proposed action. The alternative to the proposed action is denial of the request to amend... variability in climate and weather and the effects of radioactive decay and ingrowth when assessing...

  3. Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    I am particularly happy that the Academy is bringing out this document by Professor M S. Valiathan on Ayurvedic Biology. It is an effort to place before the scientific community, especially that of India, the unique scientific opportunities that arise out of viewing Ayurveda from the perspective of contemporary science, its tools ...

  4. Functional near infrared spectroscopy as a potential biological assessment of addiction recovery: preliminary findings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dempsey, Jared P; Harris, Kitty S; Shumway, Sterling T; Kimball, Thomas G; Herrera, J Caleb; Dsauza, Cynthia M; Bradshaw, Spencer D

    2015-03-01

    Addiction science has primarily utilized self-report, continued substance use, and relapse factors to explore the process of recovery. However, the entry into successful abstinence substantially reduces our assessment abilities. Advances in neuroscience may be the key to objective understanding, treating, and monitoring long-term success in addiction recovery. To explore functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIR) as a viable technique in the assessment of addiction-cue reactivity. Specifically, prefrontal cortex (PFC) activation to alcohol cues was explored among formally alcohol-dependent individuals, across varying levels of successful abstinence. The aim of the investigation was to identify patterns of PFC activation change consistent with duration of abstinence. A total of 15 formally alcohol-dependent individuals, with abstinence durations ranging from 1 month to 10 years, viewed alcohol images during fNIR PFC assessment. Participants also subjectively rated the same images for affect and arousal level. Subjective ratings of alcohol cues did not significantly correlate with duration of abstinence. As expected, days of abstinence did not significantly correlate with neutral cue fNIR reactivity. However, for alcohol cues, fNIR results showed increased days of abstinence was associated with decreased activation within the dorsolateral and dorsomedial prefrontal cortex regions. The present results suggest that fNIR may be a viable tool in the assessment of addiction-cue reactivity. RESULTS also support previous findings on the importance of dorsolateral and dorsomedial PFC in alcohol-cue activation. The findings build upon these past results suggesting that fNIR-assessed activation may represent a robust biological marker of successful addiction recovery.

  5. An assessment of the toxicological significance of anthropogenic contaminants in Canadian arctic wildlife.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisk, Aaron T; de Wit, Cynthia A; Wayland, Mark; Kuzyk, Zou Zou; Burgess, Neil; Letcher, Robert; Braune, Birgit; Norstrom, Ross; Blum, Susan Polischuk; Sandau, Courtney; Lie, Elisabeth; Larsen, Hans Jørgen S; Skaare, Janneche Utne; Muir, Derek C G

    2005-12-01

    Anthropogenic contaminants have been a concern in the Canadian arctic for over 30 years due to relatively high concentrations of bioaccumulating and biomagnifying organochlorine contaminants (OCs) and toxic metals found in some arctic biota and humans. However, few studies have addressed the potential effects of these contaminants in Canadian arctic wildlife. Prior to 1997, biological effects data were minimal and insufficient at any level of biological organization. The present review summarizes recent studies on biological effects related to contaminant exposure, and compares new tissue concentration data to threshold effects levels. Weak relationships between cadmium, mercury and selenium burdens and health biomarkers in common eider ducks (Somateria mollissima borealis) in Nunavut were found but it was concluded that metals were not influencing the health of these birds. Black guillemots (Cepphus grylle) examined near PCB-contaminated Saglek Bay, Labrador, had enlarged livers, elevated EROD and liver lipid levels and reduced retinol (vitamin A) and retinyl palmitate levels, which correlated to PCB levels in the birds. Circulating levels of thyroid hormones in polar bears (Ursus maritimus) were correlated to PCB and HO-PCB plasma concentrations, but the impact at the population level is unknown. High PCB and organochlorine pesticide concentrations were found to be strongly associated with impaired humoral and cell-mediated immune responses in polar bears, implying an increased infection risk that could impact the population. In beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas), cytochromes P450 (phase I) and conjugating (phase II) enzymes have been extensively profiled (immunochemically and catalytically) in liver, demonstrating the importance of contaminants in relation to enzyme induction, metabolism and potential contaminant bioactivation and fate. Concentrations of OCs and metals in arctic terrestrial wildlife, fish and seabirds are generally below effects thresholds

  6. An assessment of the toxicological significance of anthropogenic contaminants in Canadian arctic wildlife

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fisk, Aaron T. [Warnell School of Forest Resources, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602-2152 (United States)]. E-mail: afisk@forestry.uga.edu; Wit, Cynthia A. de [Department of Applied Environmental Science, Stockholm University, Stockholm (Sweden); Wayland, Mark [Prairie and Northern Wildlife Research Centre, Environment Canada, 115 Perimeter Rd., Saskatoon, SK, S7N 0X4 (Canada); Kuzyk, Zou Zou [Environmental Sciences Group, Royal Military College of Canada, Kingston, ON, K7K 7B4 (Canada); Burgess, Neil [Canadian Wildlife Service, Environment Canada, 6 Bruce St. Mt. Pearl, NL, A1N4T3 (Canada); Letcher, Robert [National Wildlife Research Centre, Environment Canada, Ottawa, ON, K1A 0H3 (Canada); Braune, Birgit [National Wildlife Research Centre, Environment Canada, Ottawa, ON, Canada K1A 0H3 (Canada); Norstrom, Ross [National Wildlife Research Centre, Environment Canada, Ottawa, ON, K1A 0H3 (Canada); Blum, Susan Polischuk [Office of Research Services, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, S7N 4J8 (Canada); Sandau, Courtney [Jacques Whitford Limited, Calgary, AB, T2R 0E4 (Canada); Lie, Elisabeth [National Veterinary Institute, P.O. Box 8156, Dep 0033, Oslo (Norway); Larsen, Hans Jorgen S. [Norwegian School of Veterinary Science, P.O. Box 8146, Dep 0033, Oslo (Norway); Skaare, Janneche Utne [National Veterinary Institute, P.O. Box 8156, Dep 0033, Oslo (Norway); Norwegian School of Veterinary Science, P.O. Box 8146, Dep 0033, Oslo (Norway); Muir, Derek C.G. [National Water Research Institute, Environment Canada, Burlington, ON, L7R 4A6 (Canada)

    2005-12-01

    Anthropogenic contaminants have been a concern in the Canadian arctic for over 30 years due to relatively high concentrations of bioaccumulating and biomagnifying organochlorine contaminants (OCs) and toxic metals found in some arctic biota and humans. However, few studies have addressed the potential effects of these contaminants in Canadian arctic wildlife. Prior to 1997, biological effects data were minimal and insufficient at any level of biological organization. The present review summarizes recent studies on biological effects related to contaminant exposure, and compares new tissue concentration data to threshold effects levels. Weak relationships between cadmium, mercury and selenium burdens and health biomarkers in common eider ducks (Somateria mollissima borealis) in Nunavut were found but it was concluded that metals were not influencing the health of these birds. Black guillemots (Cepphus grylle) examined near PCB-contaminated Saglek Bay, Labrador, had enlarged livers, elevated EROD and liver lipid levels and reduced retinol (vitamin A) and retinyl palmitate levels, which correlated to PCB levels in the birds. Circulating levels of thyroid hormones in polar bears (Ursus maritimus) were correlated to PCB and HO-PCB plasma concentrations, but the impact at the population level is unknown. High PCB and organochlorine pesticide concentrations were found to be strongly associated with impaired humoral and cell-mediated immune responses in polar bears, implying an increased infection risk that could impact the population. In beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas), cytochromes P450 (phase I) and conjugating (phase II) enzymes have been extensively profiled (immunochemically and catalytically) in liver, demonstrating the importance of contaminants in relation to enzyme induction, metabolism and potential contaminant bioactivation and fate. Concentrations of OCs and metals in arctic terrestrial wildlife, fish and seabirds are generally below effects thresholds

  7. Radiation-induced bystander effect in healthy G{sub 0} human lymphocytes: Biological and clinical significance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Belloni, Paola; Latini, Paolo [Department of Agrobiology and Agrochemistry, University of Tuscia, Via San Camillo De Lellis, I-01100 Viterbo (Italy); Palitti, Fabrizio, E-mail: palitti@unitus.it [Department of Agrobiology and Agrochemistry, University of Tuscia, Via San Camillo De Lellis, I-01100 Viterbo (Italy)

    2011-08-01

    To study the bystander effects, G{sub 0} human peripheral blood lymphocytes were X-irradiated with 0.1, 0.5 and 3 Gy. After 24 h, cell-free conditioned media from irradiated cultures were transferred to unexposed lymphocytes. Following 48 h of medium transfer, viability, induction of apoptosis, telomere shortening, reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels and micronuclei (after stimulation) were analyzed. A statistically significant decrement in cell viability, concomitant with the loss of mitochondrial membrane potential, telomere shortening, increases in hydrogen peroxide (H{sub 2}O{sub 2}) and superoxide anion (O{sub 2}{sup -}) with depletion of intracellular glutathione (GSH) level, and higher frequencies of micronuclei, were observed in bystander lymphocytes incubated with medium from 0.5 and 3 Gy irradiated samples, compared to lymphocytes unexposed. Furthermore, no statistically significant difference between the response to 0.5 and 3 Gy of irradiation in bystander lymphocytes, was found. However, when lymphocytes were irradiated with 0.1 Gy, no bystander effect with regard to viability, apoptosis, telomere length, and micronuclei was observed, although a high production of ROS level persisted. Radiation in the presence of the radical scavenger dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) suppressed oxidative stress induced by 3 Gy of X-rays with the effective elimination of bystander effects, suggesting a correlation between ROS and bystander signal formation in irradiated cells. The data propose that bystander effect might be mostly due to the reactions of radiation induced free radicals on DNA, with the existence of a threshold at which the bystander signal is not operative (0.1 Gy dose of X-rays). Our results may have clinical implications for health risk associated with radiation exposure.

  8. Volcanic ash supply to the surface ocean – remote sensing of biological responses and their wider biogeochemical significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas J. Browning

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Transient micronutrient enrichment of the surface ocean can enhance phytoplankton growth rates and alter microbial community structure with an ensuing spectrum of biogeochemical feedbacks. Strong phytoplankton responses to micronutrients supplied by volcanic ash have been reported recently. Here we: (i synthesize findings from these recent studies; (ii report the results of a new remote sensing study of ash fertilization; and (iii calculate theoretical bounds of ash-fertilized carbon export. Our synthesis highlights that phytoplankton responses to ash do not always simply mimic that of iron amendment; the exact mechanisms for this are likely biogeochemically important but are not yet well understood. Inherent optical properties of ash-loaded seawater suggest rhyolitic ash biases routine satellite chlorophyll-a estimation upwards by more than an order of magnitude for waters with 0.5 mg chlorophyll-a m-3. For this reason post-ash-deposition chlorophyll-a changes in oligotrophic waters detected via standard Case 1 (open ocean algorithms should be interpreted with caution. Remote sensing analysis of historic events with a bias less than a factor of 2 provided limited stand-alone evidence for ash-fertilization. Confounding factors were poor coverage, incoherent ash dispersal, and ambiguity ascribing biomass changes to ash supply over other potential drivers. Using current estimates of iron release and carbon export efficiencies, uncertainty bounds of ash-fertilized carbon export for 3 events are presented. Patagonian iron supply to the Southern Ocean from volcanic eruptions is less than that of windblown dust on thousand year timescales but can dominate supply at shorter timescales. Reducing uncertainties in remote sensing of phytoplankton response and nutrient release from ash are avenues for enabling assessment of the oceanic response to large-scale transient nutrient enrichment.

  9. Assessing the Significance of Global and Local Correlations under Spatial Autocorrelation; a Nonparametric Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazumder, Rahul; McInturff, Alex; McCauley, Douglas J.; Hastie, Trevor

    2014-01-01

    Summary We propose a method to test the correlation of two random fields when they are both spatially auto-correlated. In this scenario, the assumption of independence for the pair of observations in the standard test does not hold, and as a result we reject in many cases where there is no effect (the precision of the null distribution is overestimated). Our method recovers the null distribution taking into account the autocorrelation. It uses Monte-Carlo methods, and focuses on permuting, and then smoothing and scaling one of the variables to destroy the correlation with the other, while maintaining at the same time the initial autocorrelation. With this simulation model, any test based on the independence of two (or more) random fields can be constructed. This research was motivated by a project in biodiversity and conservation in the Biology Department at Stanford University. PMID:24571609

  10. Assessing the significance of global and local correlations under spatial autocorrelation: a nonparametric approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viladomat, Júlia; Mazumder, Rahul; McInturff, Alex; McCauley, Douglas J; Hastie, Trevor

    2014-06-01

    We propose a method to test the correlation of two random fields when they are both spatially autocorrelated. In this scenario, the assumption of independence for the pair of observations in the standard test does not hold, and as a result we reject in many cases where there is no effect (the precision of the null distribution is overestimated). Our method recovers the null distribution taking into account the autocorrelation. It uses Monte-Carlo methods, and focuses on permuting, and then smoothing and scaling one of the variables to destroy the correlation with the other, while maintaining at the same time the initial autocorrelation. With this simulation model, any test based on the independence of two (or more) random fields can be constructed. This research was motivated by a project in biodiversity and conservation in the Biology Department at Stanford University. © 2014, The International Biometric Society.

  11. Prospective Technology Assessment of Synthetic Biology: Fundamental and Propaedeutic Reflections in Order to Enable an Early Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Jan Cornelius

    2016-08-01

    Synthetic biology is regarded as one of the key technosciences of the future. The goal of this paper is to present some fundamental considerations to enable procedures of a technology assessment (TA) of synthetic biology. To accomplish such an early "upstream" assessment of a not yet fully developed technology, a special type of TA will be considered: Prospective TA (ProTA). At the center of ProTA are the analysis and the framing of "synthetic biology," including a characterization and assessment of the technological core. The thesis is that if there is any differentia specifica giving substance to the umbrella term "synthetic biology," it is the idea of harnessing self-organization for engineering purposes. To underline that we are likely experiencing an epochal break in the ontology of technoscientific systems, this new type of technology is called "late-modern technology." -I start this paper by analyzing the three most common visions of synthetic biology. Then I argue that one particular vision deserves more attention because it underlies the others: the vision of self-organization. I discuss the inherent limits of this new type of late-modern technology in the attempt to control and monitor possible risk issues. I refer to Hans Jonas' ethics and his early anticipation of the risks of a novel type of technology. I end by drawing conclusions for the approach of ProTA towards an early societal shaping of synthetic biology.

  12. Significant effects of birth-related biological factors on pre-adolescent nutritional status among rural Sundanese in West Java, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sekiyama, Makiko; Ohtsuka, Ryutaro

    2005-07-01

    The Sundanese inhabiting West Java, the second largest ethnic group in Indonesia, are characterized by a high prevalence of child malnutrition, together with high fertility. Based on an anthropometric measurement and interview survey of 310 children aged 5-12 years in a rural Sundanese village, this study examined the relative significance of the effects of eight biological, eight socioeconomic status (SES) and four health behavioural factors on their Z scores for height-for-age (HAZ) and weight-for-age (WAZ) in particular. Three biological factors, i.e. birth interval, birth weight and mother's body weight, and one SES factor, i.e. mother's occupation, were selected as the predictors of the two Z scores by regression analysis, indicating more significant effects of the biological factors than the other factors. This pattern is judged to occur in less-developed and high-fertility populations. Since these two Z scores were worse in the subject children than in the under-5-year-old children from the same village, more attention should be paid to the long-lasting effects of birth-related biological factors up to pre-adolescent ages, as an insufficient nutritional status tends to damage growth and health in adolescence and adulthood.

  13. Assessment of capability index of processes revealing significant asymmetry with respect to tolerance limits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Bukowski

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents an analysis of basic capability indices for production processes, Cp and Cpk, as well as the Cpm index for processes asymmetric with respect to tolerance limits. A method is presented for the estimation of process admissible asymmetry, when anappropriate PPM level of defective products is to be maintained. It is proved that an unbiased capability assessment for asymmetricprocesses is only feasible if the pair of indices Cp and Cpk is included in the assessment. An example is given of an analysis of data on the production of automotive bearings. The computations were performed with use of the KWSPP program.

  14. The Vocational Significance of Black Identity: Cultural Formulation Approach to Career Assessment and Career Counseling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byars-Winston, Angela M

    2010-06-01

    Scholarship is emerging on intervention models that purposefully attend to cultural variables throughout the career assessment and career counseling process (Swanson & Fouad, in press). One heuristic model that offers promise to advance culturally-relevant vocational practice with African Americans is the Outline for Cultural Formulation (American Psychiatric Association, 1994). This article explicates the Outline for Cultural Formulation in career assessment and career counseling with African Americans integrating the concept of cultural identity into the entire model. The article concludes with an illustration of the Outline for Cultural Formulation model with an African American career client.

  15. Assessing the Biological Threat Posed by Suicide Bombers

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-02-01

    or animal cadaver would provide the most realistic results. We chose to utilize a very simple SB model composed of ballistic gelatin for a number...outright use of vegetative cells might significantly change the concentration of organisms during that lag time. Second, BG spores are readily available...aerosols. Because the ballistic gelatin is composed of protein and fluorescent dye, it is highly fluorescent so that the TAC-Bio only senses aerosols

  16. 76 FR 71619 - Availability of the Final Environmental Assessment (EA) and Finding of No Significant Impact...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-18

    ..., and cultural resources; hazardous materials, pollution prevention, and solid waste; light emissions... concluded that there would be no significant short-term, long-term, or cumulative effects to the environment... significantly affect the quality of the human environment or otherwise include any condition requiring...

  17. 75 FR 69138 - Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact Related to Exemption of Material...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-11-10

    ... conduct seismic modifications. In 1983, updated economic analyses indicated that restarting Unit 3 would....'' Additionally, the proposed action will not significantly increase the probability or consequences of accidents... will not significantly increase the probability or consequences of accidents, no changes are being made...

  18. The importance of biologically relevant microclimates in habitat suitability assessments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johanna Varner

    Full Text Available Predicting habitat suitability under climate change is vital to conserving biodiversity. However, current species distribution models rely on coarse scale climate data, whereas fine scale microclimate data may be necessary to assess habitat suitability and generate predictive models. Here, we evaluate disparities between temperature data at the coarse scale from weather stations versus fine-scale data measured in microhabitats required for a climate-sensitive mammal, the American pika (Ochotona princeps. We collected two years of temperature data in occupied talus habitats predicted to be suitable (high elevation and unsuitable (low elevation by the bioclimatic envelope approach. At low elevations, talus surface and interstitial microclimates drastically differed from ambient temperatures measured on-site and at a nearby weather station. Interstitial talus temperatures were frequently decoupled from high ambient temperatures, resulting in instantaneous disparities of over 30 °C between these two measurements. Microhabitat temperatures were also highly heterogeneous, such that temperature measurements within the same patch of talus were not more correlated than measurements at distant patches. An experimental manipulation revealed that vegetation cover may cool the talus surface by up to 10 °C during the summer, which may contribute to this spatial heterogeneity. Finally, low elevation microclimates were milder and less variable than typical alpine habitat, suggesting that, counter to species distribution model predictions, these seemingly unsuitable habitats may actually be better refugia for this species under climate change. These results highlight the importance of fine-scale microhabitat data in habitat assessments and underscore the notion that some critical refugia may be counterintuitive.

  19. 78 FR 17383 - Notice of Availability of Environmental Assessment and Draft Finding of No Significant Impact...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-03-21

    ... programs for mobility fuel contracts, Direct Delivery Fuels (DDF) and Bulk Petroleum, which were considered...: The attached EA presents assessments of potential impacts to human health and the human environment... transportation and storage, including the current safety policies. The proposed action would have a negligible...

  20. Assessing clinical significance in measuring oncology patient quality of life: Introduction to the symposium, content overview, and definition of terms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sloan, Jeff A.; Cella, David; Frost, Marlene; Guyatt, Gordon H.; Sprangers, Mirjam; Symonds, Tara

    2002-01-01

    The Clinical Significance Consensus Meeting Group of the Symposium on the Clinical Significance of Quality-of-Life Measures in Cancer Patients produced 6 articles regarding the clinical significance of quality of life (QOL) assessments in oncology. The 6 articles deal with the methods used to date:

  1. Assessing biological maturity: chronological age and the pubertal development scale predict free testosterone in adolescent males.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hibberd, Elizabeth E; Hackney, Anthony C; Lane, Amy R; Myers, Joseph B

    2015-03-01

    Pubertal development status has implications for development of physical characteristics, performance, and injury risk in school-aged athletes. The objective of this study was to evaluate the ability of non-invasive measures of biological maturity to predict salivary free testosterone. A total of 61 physically active males (ages 6-16) participated in this study. Participants had their anthropometrics measured, completed the Pubertal Development Scale (PDS), and reported their birthdays and the heights of their biological parents. Exact chronological age and percent of predicted height were calculated. Resting salivary samples were collected and assessed for free testosterone levels using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay procedures. Variables were entered into a stepwise linear regression to predict free testosterone. The regression model was statistically significant (R²=0.716, F₂,₆₁=74.2, pfree testosterone. Chronological age and PDS adequately predict salivary free testosterone levels in school-aged males and may be an appropriate tool to evaluate physical maturity in school-aged males quickly, cheaply, and accurately.

  2. An integrated platform for assessing biologics (Conference Presentation)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schein, Perry; O'Dell, Dakota; Erickson, David

    2016-04-01

    Protein therapeutics are a rapidly growing portion of the pharmaceuticals market and have many significant advantages over traditional small molecule drugs. As this market expands, however, critical regulatory and quality control issues remain, most notably the problem of protein aggregation. Individual target proteins often aggregate into larger masses which trigger an immune response in the body, which can reduce the efficacy of the drug for its intended purpose, or cause serious anaphylactic side-effects. Although detecting and minimizing aggregate formation is critical to ensure an effective product, aggregation dynamics are often highly complicated and there is little hope of reliable prediction and prevention from first principles. This problem is compounded for aggregates in the subvisible range of 100 nm to 10 micrometers where traditional techniques for detecting aggregates have significant limitations. Here, we present an integrated optofluidic platform for detecting nanoscale protein aggregates and characterizing interactions between these aggregates and a reference surface. By delivering light to a solution of proteins with an optical waveguide, scattered light from individual protein aggregates can be detected and analyzed to determine the force profile between each particle and the waveguide surface. Unlike existing methods which only determine size or charge, our label-free screening technique can directly measure the surface interaction forces between single aggregates and the glass substrate. This direct measurement capability may allow for better empirical predictions of the stability of protein aggregates during drug manufacturing and storage.

  3. Research and engineering assessment of biological solubilization of phosphate

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rogers, R.D.; McIlwain, M.E.; Losinski, S.J.; Taylor, D.D.

    1993-03-01

    This research and engineering assessment examined a microbial phosphate solubilization process as a method of recovering phosphate from phosphorus containing ore compared to the existing wet acid and electric arc methods. A total of 860 microbial isolates, collected from a range of natural environments were tested for their ability to solubilize phosphate from rock phosphate. A bacterium (Pseudomonas cepacia) was selected for extensive characterization and evaluation of the mechanism of phosphate solubilization and of process engineering parameters necessary to recover phosphate from rock phosphate. These studies found that concentration of hydrogen ion and production of organic acids arising from oxidation of the carbon source facilitated microbial solubilization of both pure chemical insoluble phosphate compounds and phosphate rock. Genetic studies found that phosphate solubilization was linked to an enzyme system (glucose dehydrogenase). Process-related studies found that a critical solids density of 1% by weight (ore to liquid) was necessary for optimal solubilization. An engineering analysis evaluated the cost and energy requirements for a 2 million ton per year sized plant, whose size was selected to be comparable to existing wet acid plants.

  4. Significance of assessment experiences during initial teacher training in physical education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wagner dos Santos

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract This study investigates how students in the final semester of their teacher training program (licensure at the Center of Physical Education and Sports (CEFD, Espírito Santo Federal University, Brazil, (reinterpret their assessment experiences, an integral component of their teacher training. It employs the narrative as a theoretical and methodological perspective, and it utilizes student portfolios, as well as focus groups and semi-structured individual interviews as inputs for data generation. Ten students in their eighth, or final, semester participated in this study. These were the total respondents to a "call for volunteers" among the 2014 graduating class. The results suggest that the students believe the assessment processes of their teaching practices in physical education are disjointed. They feel that the disciplines that allow them to review their own performance during teacher training are more efficient and play a stronger role in their education.

  5. Significance of vulnerability assessment in establishment of Hainan provincal disaster medical system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Min; Lu, Chuanzhu; Son, Wei; Miao, Junhong; Ding, Yipeng; Li, Longhe; Zhang, Leilei; Zhao, Nin; Hu, Bijiang; Zhang, Yunjun

    2011-08-01

    Hainan is an island province in south China with a high frequency of unconventional emergencies due to its special geographic location and national military defense role. Given the limited transportation route from Hainan to the outside world, self-rescue is more important to Hainan Province than other provinces in China and it is therefore imperative to establish an independent, scientific as well as efficient provincal disaster medical system in Hainan. The regulatory role for vulnerability analysis/assessment has been demonstrated in establisment of disaster medical system in varoius countries and or regions. In this paper, we attempt to describe/propose how to adopt vulnerability assessment through mathematical modeling of major biophysical social vulnerability factors to establish an independent, scientific, effieicnt and comprehensive provincial disaster medical system in Hainan. Copyright © 2011 Hainan Medical College. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Assessment of biological chromium among stainless steel and mild steel welders in relation to welding processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edmé, J L; Shirali, P; Mereau, M; Sobaszek, A; Boulenguez, C; Diebold, F; Haguenoer, J M

    1997-01-01

    Air and biological monitoring were used for assessing external and internal chromium exposure among 116 stainless steel welders (SS welders) using manual metal arc (MMA), metal inert gas (MIG) and tungsten inert gas (TIG) welding processes (MMA: n = 57; MIG: n = 37; TIG: n = 22) and 30 mild steel welders (MS welders) using MMA and MIG welding processes (MMA: n = 14; MIG: n = 16). The levels of atmospheric total chromium were evaluated after personal air monitoring. The mean values for the different groups of SS welders were 201 micrograms/m3 (MMA) and 185 micrograms/m3 (MIG), 52 micrograms/m3 (TIG) and for MS welders 8.1 micrograms/m3 (MMA) and 7.3 micrograms/m3 (MIG). The curve of cumulative frequency distribution from biological monitoring among SS welders showed chromium geometric mean concentrations in whole blood of 3.6 micrograms/l (95th percentile = 19.9), in plasma of 3.3 micrograms/l (95th percentile = 21.0) and in urine samples of 6.2 micrograms/l (95th percentile = 58.0). Among MS welders, mean values in whole blood and plasma were rather more scattered (1.8 micrograms/l, 95th percentile = 9.3 and 1.3 micrograms/l, 95th percentile = 8.4, respectively) and in urine the value was 2.4 micrograms/l (95th percentile = 13.3). The analysis of variance of chromium concentrations in plasma previously showed a metal effect (F = 29.7, P welding process. MMA-SS is definitely different from other processes because the biological values are clearly higher. These higher levels are due to the very significant concentrations of total soluble chromium, mainly hexavalent chromium, in welding fumes.

  7. Biological assessments for the low energy demonstration accelerator, 1996 and 1997

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cross, S.

    1998-12-31

    The Department of Energy (DOE) plans to build, install, and operate a Low Energy Demonstration Accelerator (LMA) in Technical Area 53 of the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). LEDA will demonstrate the accelerator technology necessary to produce tritium, but is not designed to produce tritium at LANL. USFWS reviewers of the Biological Assessment prepared for LEDA insisted that the main drainage be monitored to measure and document changes to vegetation, soils, wildlife, and habitats due to LEDA effluent discharges. The Biology Team of ESH-20 (LANL`s Ecology Group) has performed these monitoring activities during 1996 and 1997 to document baseline conditions before LEDA released significant effluent discharges. Quarterly monitoring of the outfall which will discharge LEDA blowdown effluent had one exceedance of permitted parameters, a high chlorine discharge that was quickly remedied. Samples from 12 soil pits in the drainage area contained no hydric indicators, such as organic matter in the upper layers, streaking, organic pans, and oxidized rhizospheres. Vegetation transacts in the meadows that LEDA discharges will flow through contained 44 species of herbaceous plants, all upland taxa. Surveys of resident birds, reptiles, and amphibians documented a fauna typical of local dry canyons. No threatened or endangered species inhabit the project area, but increased effluent releases may make the area more attractive to many wildlife species, an endangered raptor, and several other species of concern. Biological best management practices especially designed for LEDA are discussed, including protection of floodplains, erosion control measures, hazards posed by increased usage of the area by deer and elk and revegetation of disturbed areas.

  8. Everglades Landscape Model: Integrated Assessment of Hydrology, Biogeochemistry, and Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fitz, H. C.; Wang, N.; Sklar, F. H.

    2002-05-01

    Water management infrastructure and operations have fragmented the greater Everglades into separate, impounded basins, altering flows and hydropatterns. A significant area of this managed system has experienced anthropogenic eutrophication. This combination of altered hydrology and water quality has interacted to degrade vegetative habitats and other ecological characteristics of the Everglades. One of the modeling tools to be used in developing restoration alternatives is the Everglades Landscape Model (ELM), a process-based, spatially explicit simulation of ecosystem dynamics across a heterogeneous, 10,000 km2 region. The model has been calibrated to capture hydrologic and surface water quality dynamics across most of the Everglades landscape over decadal time scales. We evaluated phosphorus loading throughout the Everglades system under two base scenarios. The 1995 base case assumed current management operations, with phosphorus inflow concentrations fixed at their long term, historical average. The 2050 base case assumed future modifications in water and nutrient management, with all managed inflows to the Everglades having reduced phosphorus concentrations. In an example indicator subregion that currently is highly eutrophic, the 31-yr simulations predicted that desirable periphyton and macrophyte communities were maintained under the 2050 base case, whereas in the 1995 base case, periphyton biomass and production decreased to negligible levels and macrophytes became extremely dense. The negative periphyton response in the 1995 base case was due to high phosphorus loads and rapid macrophyte growth that shaded this algal community. Along an existing 11 km eutrophication gradient, the model indicated that the 2050 base case had ecologically significant reductions in phosphorus accumulation compared to the 1995 base case. Indicator regions (in Everglades National Park) distant from phosphorus inflow points also exhibited reductions in phosphorus accumulation

  9. Clinical significance of mobile health assessed sleep duration and variability in bipolar disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufmann, Christopher N; Gershon, Anda; Eyler, Lisa T; Depp, Colin A

    2016-10-01

    Sleep disturbances are prevalent, persistent, and impairing features of bipolar disorder. However, the near-term and cumulative impact of the severity and variability of sleep disturbances on symptoms and functioning remains unclear. We examined self-reported daily sleep duration and variability in relation to mood symptoms, medication adherence, cognitive functioning, and concurrent daily affect. Forty-one outpatients diagnosed with bipolar disorder were asked to provide daily reports of sleep duration and affect collected via ecological momentary assessment with smartphones over eleven weeks. Measures of depressive and manic symptoms, medication adherence, and cognitive function were collected at baseline and concurrent assessment of affect were collected daily. Analyses examined whether sleep duration or variability were associated with baseline measures and changes in same-day or next-day affect. Greater sleep duration variability (but not average sleep duration) was associated with greater depressive and manic symptom severity, and lower medication adherence at baseline, and with lower and more variable ratings of positive affect and higher ratings of negative affect. Sleep durations shorter than 7-8 h were associated with lower same-day ratings of positive and higher same-day ratings of negative affect, however this did not extend to next-day affect. Greater cumulative day-to-day sleep duration variability, but not average sleep duration, was related to more severe mood symptoms, lower self-reported medication adherence and higher levels of negative affect. Bouts of short- or long-duration sleep had transient impact on affect. Day-to-day sleep variability may be important to incorporate into clinical assessment of sleep disturbances in bipolar disorder. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. 76 FR 44374 - Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for License Amendment to Source...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-25

    ... caused by residual radioactivity on building surfaces impacts; and impacts to plant and animal... significant impacts for the non-fuel cycle nuclear material facilities, which would include the Building 1103A... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office NUCLEAR REGULATORY...

  11. Brief Group Psychoeducation for Bulimia Nervosa: Assessing the Clinical Significance of Change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Ron; And Others

    1990-01-01

    Brief intervention designed to promote symptom management was completed by 41 women with bulimia nervosa. Findings revealed diversity of outcomes that individuals reported following participation in intervention. Found differential reporting of clinically significant change in favor of specific eating psychopathology relative to personality…

  12. Reliability and Clinical Significance of Mobility and Balance Assessments in Multiple Sclerosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Learmonth, Yvonne C.; Paul, Lorna; McFadyen, Angus K.; Mattison, Paul; Miller, Linda

    2012-01-01

    The aim of the study was to establish the test-retest reliability, clinical significance and precision of four mobility and balance measures--the Timed 25-Foot Walk, Six-minute Walk, Timed Up and Go and the Berg Balance Scale--in individuals moderately affected by multiple sclerosis. Twenty four participants with multiple sclerosis (Extended…

  13. Sequential Right and Left Ventricular Assessment in Posttetralogy of Fallot Patients with Significant Pulmonary Regurgitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wijesekera, Vishva A; Raju, Rekha; Precious, Bruce; Berger, Adam J; Kiess, Marla C; Leipsic, Jonathon A; Grewal, Jasmine

    2016-12-01

    The natural history of right ventricular (RV) and left ventricular (LV) size and function among adults with tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) repair and hemodynamically significant pulmonary regurgitation (PR) is not known. The main aim of this study was to determine changes in RV and LV size and function over time in an adult population with TOF repair and hemodynamically significant pulmonary regurgitation. Forty patients with repaired TOF and hemodynamically significant PR were included. These patients were identified on the basis of having more than one CMR between January 2008 and 2015. Patients with a prosthetic pulmonary valve or any cardiac intervention between CMR studies were excluded. Rate of progression (ROP) of RV dilation was determined for both indexed right ventricular end-systolic volume (RVESVi) and indexed right ventricular end-diastolic volume (RVEDVi), and calculated as the difference between the last and first volumes divided by the number of years between CMR#1 and CMR#2. Subjects were also divided into two groups based on the distribution of the ROP of RV dilation: Group I-rapid ROP (>50th percentile) and Group II-slower ROP (≤50th percentile). The interval between CMR#1 and CMR#2 was 3.9 ± 1.7 years (range 1-8 years). We did find a significant change in RVEDVi and RVESVi over this time period, although the magnitude of change was small. Nine patients (23%) had a reduction in right ventricular ejection fraction (RVEF) by greater than 5%, 13 patients (33%) had an increase in RVEDVi by greater than 10 mL/m(2) and seven patients (18%) had an increase in RVESVi by greater than 10 mL/m(2) . Median ROP for RVEDVi was 1.8 (range -10.4 to 21.8) mL/(m(2) year); RVESVi 1.1 (range -5.8 to 24.5) mL/(m(2) year) and RVEF -0.5 (range -8 to 4)%/year. Patients with a rapid ROP had significantly larger RV volumes at the time of CMR#1 and lower RVEF as compared to the slow ROP group. There was no overall significant change in LVEDVi, LVESVi, or LVEF over this

  14. Ways of incorporating photographic images in learning and assessing high school biology: A study of visual perception and visual cognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nixon, Brenda Chaumont

    This study evaluated the cognitive benefits and costs of incorporating biology-textbook and student-generated photographic images into the learning and assessment processes within a 10th grade biology classroom. The study implemented Wandersee's (2000) 20-Q Model of Image-Based Biology Test-Item Design (20-Q Model) to explore the use of photographic images to assess students' understanding of complex biological processes. A thorough review of the students' textbook using ScaleMaster R with PC Interface was also conducted. The photographs, diagrams, and other representations found in the textbook were measured to determine the percentage of each graphic depicted in the book and comparisons were made to the text. The theoretical framework that guided the research included Human Constructivist tenets espoused by Mintzes, Wandersee and Novak (2000). Physiological and cognitive factors of images and image-based learning as described by Robin (1992), Solso (1997) and Wandersee (2000) were examined. Qualitative case study design presented by Yin (1994), Denzin and Lincoln (1994) was applied and data were collected through interviews, observations, student activities, student and school artifacts and Scale Master IIRTM measurements. The results of the study indicate that although 24% of the high school biology textbook is devoted to photographic images which contribute significantly to textbook cost, the teacher and students paid little attention to photographic images other than as aesthetic elements for creating biological ambiance, wasting valuable opportunities for learning. The analysis of the photographs corroborated findings published by the Association American Association for the Advancement of Science that indicated "While most of the books are lavishly illustrated, these representations are rarely helpful, because they are too abstract, needlessly complicated, or inadequately explained" (Roseman, 2000, p. 2). The findings also indicate that applying the 20-Q

  15. [Hypolipidemic agents drug interactions: approach to establish and assess its clinical significance. Structured review].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franco, D; Henao, Y; Monsalve, M; Gutiérrez, F; Hincapie, J; Amariles, P

    2013-01-01

    To carry out a structures review of drug interactions of hypolipidemic drugs and to assess their clinical relevance. Structured review of drug interactions of hypolipidemic drugs in humans through PubMed/Medline of published articles, without language restrictions and with full text access until June 30th of 2012. The following Mesh terms were used: Drug Interactions, Lipid Regulating Agents, Herb-Drug Interactions, Food-Drug Interactions y Hypolipidemic Agents (Pharmacological Action). The information was completed with those articles considered to be relevant. Finally, a method was used to assess the clinical relevance of the interaction, based on the likelihood of occurrence and the severity of the effect of the interaction. 849 publications were gathered, of which 243 references were selected, among which 189 interactions were identified. Thirty-three of them were considered of very high risk (level 1) and 42 of high risk (level 2), basically associated to increased risk for rhabdomyolisis. Enzymatic inhibition of CYP450 was the most common mechanism for these interactions. Of the interactions identified in patients on hypolipidemic drugs, 60.3% (128/189) are clinically relevant (very high or high risk), mainly associated to the occurrence of rhabdomyolisis. Most of these interactions are attributed to simultaneous use of CYP3A4 inhibitors. Therefore, statins metabolized through CYP3A4 (simvastatin, lovastatin and atorvastatin) are the ones with the highest number of clinically relevant interactions. Copyright © 2013 SEFH. Published by AULA MEDICA. All rights reserved.

  16. Photon-tissue interaction model for quantitative assessment of biological tissues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Seung Yup; Lloyd, William R.; Wilson, Robert H.; Chandra, Malavika; McKenna, Barbara; Simeone, Diane; Scheiman, James; Mycek, Mary-Ann

    2014-02-01

    In this study, we describe a direct fit photon-tissue interaction model to quantitatively analyze reflectance spectra of biological tissue samples. The model rapidly extracts biologically-relevant parameters associated with tissue optical scattering and absorption. This model was employed to analyze reflectance spectra acquired from freshly excised human pancreatic pre-cancerous tissues (intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm (IPMN), a common precursor lesion to pancreatic cancer). Compared to previously reported models, the direct fit model improved fit accuracy and speed. Thus, these results suggest that such models could serve as real-time, quantitative tools to characterize biological tissues assessed with reflectance spectroscopy.

  17. A Biological Condition Gradient Model for Historical Assessment of Estuarine Habitat Structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shumchenia, Emily J.; Pelletier, Marguerite C.; Cicchetti, Giancarlo; Davies, Susan; Pesch, Carol E.; Deacutis, Christopher F.; Pryor, Margherita

    2015-01-01

    Coastal ecosystems are affected by ever-increasing natural and human pressures. Because the physical, chemical, and biological characteristics unique to estuarine ecosystems control the ways that biological resources respond to ecosystem stressors, we present a flexible and adaptable biological assessment method for estuaries. The biological condition gradient (BCG) is a scientific framework of biological response to increasing anthropogenic stress that is comprehensive and ecosystem based and evaluates environmental conditions and the status of ecosystem services in order to identify, communicate, and prioritize management action. Using existing data, we constructed the first estuarine BCG framework that examines changes in habitat structure through time. Working in a New England (U.S.) estuary with a long history of human influence, we developed an approach to define a reference level, which we described as a "minimally disturbed" range of conditions for the ecosystem, anchored by observations before 1850 AD. Like many estuaries in the U.S., the relative importance of environmental stressors changed over time, but even qualitative descriptions of the biological indicators' status provided useful information for defining condition levels. This BCG demonstrated that stressors rarely acted alone and that declines in one biological indicator influenced the declines of others. By documenting the biological responses to cumulative stressors, the BCG inherently suggests an ecosystem-based approach to management. Additionally, the BCG process initiates thinking over long time scales and can be used to inspire scientists, managers, and the public toward environmental action.

  18. Assessing the significance of borders and territoriality in a globalized Europe

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Castan Pinos, Jaume

    2013-01-01

    challenges this vision, which despite losing importance in academic circles has now been reproduced in popular culture, arguing that borders have not been removed and that territoriality still plays a crucial role at the beginning of the 21st century. This claim will be justified with evidence stemming from...... different policies, dynamics and discourses. By analysing the importance of territoriality from three different angles (policy, territorial disputes and discourses) the article aims to demonstrate that borders and their ‘barrier’ function are likely to continue being significant in the foreseeable future....

  19. Assessment of significance of features acquired from thyroid ultrasonograms in Hashimoto's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koprowski Robert

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Introduction This paper concerns the analysis of the features obtained from thyroid ultrasound images in left and right transverse and longitudinal sections. In the image analysis, the thyroid lobe is treated as a texture for healthy subjects and patients with Hashimoto’s disease. The applied methods of analysis and image processing were profiled to obtain 10 features of the image. Then, their significance in the classification was shown. Material In this study, the examined group consisted of 29 healthy subjects aged 18 to 60 and 65 patients with Hashimoto's disease. For each subject, four ultrasound images were taken. They were all in transverse and longitudinal sections of the right and left lobe of the thyroid, which gave 376 images in total. Method 10 different features obtained from each ultrasound image were suggested. The analyzed thyroid lobe was marked automatically or manually with a rectangular element. Results The analysis of 10 features and the creation for each one of them their own decision tree configuration resulted in distinguishing 3 most significant features. The results of the quality of classification show accuracy above 94% for a non-trimmed decision tree.

  20. Washington Wildlife Mitigation Projects : Final Programmatic Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    United States. Bonneville Power Administration; Washington (State). Dept. of Fish and Wildlife.

    1996-08-01

    Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) proposes to fund the portion of the Washington Wildlife Mitigation Agreement (Agreement) pertaining to wildlife habitat mitigation projects to be undertaken in a cooperative effort with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW). This Agreement serves to establish a monetary budget funded by BPA for projects proposed by Washington Wildlife Coalition members and approved by BPA to protect, mitigate, and improve wildlife and/or wildlife habitat within the State of Washington that has been affected by the construction of Federal dams along the Columbia River. This Environmental Assessment examines the potential environmental effects of acquiring and/or improving wildlife habitat within five different project areas. These project areas are located throughout Grant County and in parts of Okanogan, Douglas, Adams, Franklin, Kittias, Yakima, and Benton Counties. The multiple projects would involve varying combinations of five proposed site-specific activities (habitat improvement, operation and maintenance, monitoring and evaluation, access and recreation management, and cultural resource management). All required Federal, State, and tribal coordination, permits and/or approvals would be obtained prior to ground-disturbing activities.

  1. Assessment and significance of protein-protein interactions during development of protein biopharmaceuticals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yadav, Sandeep; Liu, Jun; Scherer, Thomas M; Gokarn, Yatin; Demeule, Barthélemy; Kanai, Sonoko; Andya, James D; Shire, Steven J

    2013-06-01

    Early development of protein biotherapeutics using recombinant DNA technology involved progress in the areas of cloning, screening, expression and recovery/purification. As the biotechnology industry matured, resulting in marketed products, a greater emphasis was placed on development of formulations and delivery systems requiring a better understanding of the chemical and physical properties of newly developed protein drugs. Biophysical techniques such as analytical ultracentrifugation, dynamic and static light scattering, and circular dichroism were used to study protein-protein interactions during various stages of development of protein therapeutics. These studies included investigation of protein self-association in many of the early development projects including analysis of highly glycosylated proteins expressed in mammalian CHO cell cultures. Assessment of protein-protein interactions during development of an IgG1 monoclonal antibody that binds to IgE were important in understanding the pharmacokinetics and dosing for this important biotherapeutic used to treat severe allergic IgE-mediated asthma. These studies were extended to the investigation of monoclonal antibody-antigen interactions in human serum using the fluorescent detection system of the analytical ultracentrifuge. Analysis by sedimentation velocity analytical ultracentrifugation was also used to investigate competitive binding to monoclonal antibody targets. Recent development of high concentration protein formulations for subcutaneous administration of therapeutics posed challenges, which resulted in the use of dynamic and static light scattering, and preparative analytical ultracentrifugation to understand the self-association and rheological properties of concentrated monoclonal antibody solutions.

  2. ASSESSING SELF-STUDY WORK’S SIGNIFICANT SKILLS FOR SUCCESSFUL LEARNING IN THE HIGHER SCHOOL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Galina V. Milovanova

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: the problem of organizing students’ independent work/self-study is not new, but the changes in the higher school for the last two decades show that the experience accumulated in the traditional educational model can be applied only when it is processed in the present-day conditions. The article analyses the innovative component of the educational process in terms of a significant increase in the volume of compulsory independent work in the university. Particular attention is paid to determining the levels of the formation of skills for independent work in terms of students’ readiness for its implementa¬tion. The aim of the research is to identify the most significant skills of independent work for successful study at the university. Materials and Methods: the research is based on general scholarly methods: analysis, comparison, generalisation. A questionnaire survey was carried out and a correlation analysis of the results was presented. The mathematical statistics methods in Excel application were u sed for processing the survey data. Results: the article focused on the relevance of formation the students’ ability to work independently in the learning process. Requirements for professionals recognize the need for knowledge and skills, but more importantly, the ability and readiness to complete this knowledge and be in a state of continuous education and self-education. In turn, readiness to self-education cannot exist without independent work. The ratio of students to work independently and their skills’ levels in this area of the gnostic, design, structural, organisational and communicative blocks were identified because o f the research. Discussion and Conclusions: the levels of the formation of the skills for independent work influence on the success of the learning. There is a correlation between indicators of achievement and the ability to work independently. Organisation and communication skills have significant

  3. Toward better assessment of tornado potential in typhoons: Significance of considering entrainment effects for CAPE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sueki, Kenta; Niino, Hiroshi

    2016-12-01

    The characteristics of typhoons that spawned tornadoes (tornadic typhoons: TTs) in Japan from 1991 to 2013 were investigated by composite analysis using the Japanese 55 year Reanalysis and compared with those of typhoons that did not spawn tornadoes (nontornadic typhoons: NTs). We found that convective available potential energy (CAPE), which considers the effects of entrainment (entraining CAPE: E-CAPE), and storm-relative environmental helicity (SREH) are significantly large in the northeast quadrant of TTs where tornadoes frequently occur and that E-CAPE and SREH in that quadrant for TTs are larger than those for NTs. On the other hand, ordinary CAPE without entrainment does not account for the spatial distribution of tornado occurrences nor does it distinguish TTs from NTs. E-CAPE is sensitive to humidity in the midtroposphere; thus, it is effective for detecting a conditionally unstable layer up to about 550 hPa, which is distinctive of TTs.

  4. Assessing and Evaluating Ḥadith: Its Value, Significance, Authority and Authenticity in Islamic Thought

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dr. Farhat Nisar

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Qur’an and Ḥadith as fundamental and primary sources of Shariah stand as hall mark of Islam. Ḥadith called traditions as the second fundamental source of Islam embodies sayings, actions and expressions of Prophet Muhammad (SAW explicit or implicit. Mainly there have been two trends of rejecting the status of Ḥadith. One is rejecting the authority of Ḥadith and other rejects the authenticity of Ḥadith especially “Khabar-al-wahid” or solitary tradition. Other group does not completely reject the authority of Ḥadith rather text of Ḥadith especially in case of weak traditions. This paper discuss the opinion of rejecters of Ḥadith and contribution of Muslim scholars along with their arguments from Qur’an and Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (SAW to highlight the importance and significance of authority and authenticity of Ḥadith in all disciplines of Islamic thought.

  5. Concentrations, input prediction and probabilistic biological risk assessment of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) along Gujarat coastline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gosai, Haren B; Sachaniya, Bhumi K; Dudhagara, Dushyant R; Rajpara, Rahul K; Dave, Bharti P

    2017-08-11

    A comprehensive investigation was conducted in order to assess the levels of PAHs, their input prediction and potential risks to bacterial abundance and human health along Gujarat coastline. A total of 40 sediment samples were collected at quarterly intervals within a year from two contaminated sites-Alang-Sosiya Shipbreaking Yard (ASSBRY) and Navlakhi Port (NAV), situated at Gulf of Khambhat and Gulf of Kutch, respectively. The concentration of ΣPAHs ranged from 408.00 to 54240.45 ng g-1 dw, indicating heavy pollution of PAHs at both the contaminated sites. Furthermore, isomeric ratios and principal component analysis have revealed that inputs of PAHs at both contaminated sites were mixed-pyrogenic and petrogenic. Pearson co-relation test and regression analysis have disclosed Nap, Acel and Phe as major predictors for bacterial abundance at both contaminated sites. Significantly, cancer risk assessment of the PAHs has been exercised based on incremental lifetime cancer risks. Overall, index of cancer risk of PAHs for ASSBRY and NAV ranged from 4.11 × 10-6-2.11 × 10-5 and 9.08 × 10-6-4.50 × 10-3 indicating higher cancer risk at NAV compared to ASSBRY. The present findings provide baseline information that may help in developing advanced bioremediation and bioleaching strategies to minimize biological risk.

  6. Assessment of student learning associated with tree thinking in an undergraduate introductory organismal biology course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, James J; Cheruvelil, Kendra Spence; Auvenshine, Stacie

    2013-01-01

    Phylogenetic trees provide visual representations of ancestor-descendant relationships, a core concept of evolutionary theory. We introduced "tree thinking" into our introductory organismal biology course (freshman/sophomore majors) to help teach organismal diversity within an evolutionary framework. Our instructional strategy consisted of designing and implementing a set of experiences to help students learn to read, interpret, and manipulate phylogenetic trees, with a particular emphasis on using data to evaluate alternative phylogenetic hypotheses (trees). To assess the outcomes of these learning experiences, we designed and implemented a Phylogeny Assessment Tool (PhAT), an open-ended response instrument that asked students to: 1) map characters on phylogenetic trees; 2) apply an objective criterion to decide which of two trees (alternative hypotheses) is "better"; and 3) demonstrate understanding of phylogenetic trees as depictions of ancestor-descendant relationships. A pre-post test design was used with the PhAT to collect data from students in two consecutive Fall semesters. Students in both semesters made significant gains in their abilities to map characters onto phylogenetic trees and to choose between two alternative hypotheses of relationship (trees) by applying the principle of parsimony (Occam's razor). However, learning gains were much lower in the area of student interpretation of phylogenetic trees as representations of ancestor-descendant relationships.

  7. When Significant Others Suffer: German Validation of the Burden Assessment Scale (BAS.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina Hunger

    Full Text Available There is a need of an economical, reliable, and valid instrument in the German-speaking countries to measure the burden of relatives who care for mentally ill persons. We translated the Burden Assessment Scale (BAS and conducted a study investigating factor structure, psychometric quality and predictive validity. We used confirmative factor analyses (CFA, maximum-likelihood method to examine the dimensionality of the German BAS in a sample of 215 relatives (72% women; M = 32 years, SD = 14, range: 18 to 77; 39% employed of mentally ill persons (50% (ex-partner or (best friend; M = 32 years, SD = 13, range 8 to 64; main complaints were depression and/or anxiety. Cronbach's α determined the internal consistency. We examined predictive validity using regression analyses including the BAS and validated scales of social systems functioning (Experience In Social Systems Questionnaire, EXIS.pers, EXIS.org and psychopathology (Brief Symptom Inventory, BSI. Variables that might have influenced the dependent variables (e.g. age, gender, education, employment and civil status were controlled by their introduction in the first step, and the BAS in the second step of the regression analyses. A model with four correlated factors (Disrupted Activities, Personal Distress, Time Perspective, Guilt showed the best fit. With respect to the number of items included, the internal consistency was very good. The modified German BAS predicted relatives' social systems functioning and psychopathology. The economical design makes the 19-item BAS promising for practice-oriented research, and for studies under time constraints. Strength, limitations and future directions are discussed.

  8. Assessing the Soil Physiological Potential Using Pedo-Biological Diagnosis Under Minimum-Tillage System and Mineral Fertilization

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Lazar Bireescu; Geanina Bireescu; Michele Vincenzo Sellitto

    2014-01-01

    .... Accordingly, the objective of this research was to assess the impact of technological systems by minimum tillage on soil biological activity, using the Pedo-Biological Diagnosis of Soil Resources...

  9. Assessing the significance of climate and community factors on urban water demand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Md Mahmudul Haque

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Ensuring adequate water supply to urban areas is a challenging task due to factors such as rapid urban growth, increasing water demand and climate change. In developing a sustainable water supply system, it is important to identify the dominant water demand factors for any given water supply scheme. This paper applies principal components analysis to identify the factors that dominate residential water demand using the Blue Mountains Water Supply System in Australia as a case study. The results show that the influence of community intervention factors (e.g. use of water efficient appliances and rainwater tanks on water demand are among the most significant. The result also confirmed that the community intervention programmes and water pricing policy together can play a noticeable role in reducing the overall water demand. On the other hand, the influence of rainfall on water demand is found to be very limited, while temperature shows some degree of correlation with water demand. The results of this study would help water authorities to plan for effective water demand management strategies and to develop a water demand forecasting model with appropriate climatic factors to achieve sustainable water resources management. The methodology developed in this paper can be adapted to other water supply systems to identify the influential factors in water demand modelling and to devise an effective demand management strategy.

  10. Assessment of genes LRP5, BVP4, TGF^l polymorphisms significance in postmenopausal osteoporosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    KA Myakotkin

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available 180 women with primary postmenopausal osteoporosis (OP (mean age 67,5+7,8 years were included. 118 postmenopausal women without osteoporosis and osteopenia (mean age 63,8±8,1 years formed control group. Higher frequency of LRP5 gene CT genotype was revealed in pts with OP in comparison with control (OR=2,2; p=0,005. Tendency to increase of gene BMP4 AA genotype and gene TGFfi CC genotype was found in pts with OP in comparison with control. But the difference was not statistically significant. OP pts showed accumulation of CTCC (gene LRP5 and TGFfil combination and CTAV (gene LRP5 and BMP4 combination compounds increasing risk of the disease by a factor of 4 (p=0,0004 and 2,5 (p=0,035 respectively. Association was revealed between LRP5 and TGFfil (r=0,26; p=0,001, between polymorphisms of these genes and alkaline phosphatase level (r=0,22; p=0,004 and r=0,16; p=0,04 respectively, between gene BMP4 polymorphisms and serum osteoprotegerin concentration (r=0,2; p=0,0l6. Combined LRP5/TGF$1 genotype was associated with femur neck BMD (r=0,20; p=0,014 and LRP5/BMP4 - with trochanter BMD (r=0.16; p=0,055. Carriers of gene LRP5 CT genotype, gene TGFfil TT genotype and gene BMP4 W genotype had lower mean BMD values in femur neck and trochanter.

  11. EFFECT SIGNIFICANCE ASSESSMENT OF THE THERMODYNAMICAL FACTORS ON THE SOLID OXIDE FUEL CELL OPERATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. A. Sednin

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Technologies of direct conversion of the fuel energy into electrical power are an upcoming trend in power economy. Over the last decades a number of countries have created industrial prototypes of power plants on fuel elements (cells, while fuel cells themselves became a commercial product on the world energy market. High electrical efficiency of the fuel cells allows predictting their further spread as part of hybrid installations jointly with gas and steam turbines which specifically enables achieving the electrical efficiency greater than 70 %. Nevertheless, investigations in the area of increasing efficiency and reliability of the fuel cells continue. Inter alia, research into the effects of oxidizing reaction thermodynamic parameters, fuel composition and oxidation reaction products on effectiveness of the solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC is of specific scientific interest. The article presents a concise analysis of the fuel type effects on the SOFC efficiency. Based on the open publications experimental data and the data of numerical model studies, the authors adduce results of the statistical analysis of the SOFC thermodynamic parameters effect on the effectiveness of its functioning as well as of the reciprocative factors of these parameters and gas composition at the inlet and at the outlet of the cell. The presented diagrams reflect dimension of the indicated parameters on the SOFC operation effectiveness. The significance levels of the above listed factors are ascertained. Statistical analysis of the effects of the SOFC functionning process thermodynamical, consumption and concentration parameters demonstrates quintessential influence of the reciprocative factors (temperature – flow-rate and pressure – flow-rate and the nitrogen N2 and oxygen O2 concentrations on the operation efficiency in the researched range of its functioning. These are the parameters to be considered on a first-priority basis while developing mathematical models

  12. Development of the Neuron Assessment for Measuring Biology Students’ Use of Experimental Design Concepts and Representations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dasgupta, Annwesa P.; Anderson, Trevor R.; Pelaez, Nancy J.

    2016-01-01

    Researchers, instructors, and funding bodies in biology education are unanimous about the importance of developing students’ competence in experimental design. Despite this, only limited measures are available for assessing such competence development, especially in the areas of molecular and cellular biology. Also, existing assessments do not measure how well students use standard symbolism to visualize biological experiments. We propose an assessment-design process that 1) provides background knowledge and questions for developers of new “experimentation assessments,” 2) elicits practices of representing experiments with conventional symbol systems, 3) determines how well the assessment reveals expert knowledge, and 4) determines how well the instrument exposes student knowledge and difficulties. To illustrate this process, we developed the Neuron Assessment and coded responses from a scientist and four undergraduate students using the Rubric for Experimental Design and the Concept-Reasoning Mode of representation (CRM) model. Some students demonstrated sound knowledge of concepts and representations. Other students demonstrated difficulty with depicting treatment and control group data or variability in experimental outcomes. Our process, which incorporates an authentic research situation that discriminates levels of visualization and experimentation abilities, shows potential for informing assessment design in other disciplines. PMID:27146159

  13. Clinical Significance of Serum Soluble CD Molecules to Assess Disease Activity in Vitiligo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Speeckaert, Reinhart; Lambert, Jo; van Geel, Nanja

    2016-11-01

    It is difficult to determine disease activity in vitiligo owing to the absence of inflammatory signs, such as erythema or scaling. A biomarker that could confirm active disease and indicate likely future disease progression would therefore be of considerable value. To investigate whether soluble CD27 (sCD27), sCD25, or sCD40L could be valuable biomarkers to determine disease activity in vitiligo and indicate likely future progression. A combined cross-sectional and prospective study was conducted at the department of dermatology at Ghent University Hospital between February 24, 2012, and December 12, 2015. Ninety-three patients with vitiligo were enrolled, including 83 individuals with nonsegmental vitiligo and 10 with segmental vitiligo. Blood sampling was performed, and sCD25, sCD27, and sCD40L were measured in serum. The associations between sCD levels, disease activity, and future progression were investigated. Of the 93 patients included in the study, 51 were women (55%); median (interquartile range) age was 36.5 (26.0-49.8) years. Both sCD27 (21.5 ng/mL [16.1-30.0 ng/mL] vs 18.4 ng/mL [12.5-22.1 ng/mL]; P = .006) and sCD25 (2.6 ng/mL [2.1-3.4 ng/mL] vs 2.2 ng/mL [1.7-2.4 ng/mL]; P = .002) levels were associated with active disease. Moreover, a statistically significant link with disease progression after 3 to 6 months was found for sCD27 (21.7 [17.0-29.1] vs 16.6 [13.5-23.7]; P = .02) but not for sCD25 (2.8 ng/mL [2.2-3.4 ng/mL] vs 2.3 [1.9-2.8 ng/mL]; P = .053). Further in vitro experiments showed a correlation between sCD25 and interferon γ (r = 0.562, P = .005), interleukin 10 (r = 0.453, P = .03), and sCD27 secretion (r = 0.549, P = .007). No associations were found for sCD40L levels. This study demonstrates increased levels of sCD27 and sCD25 in patients with active vitiligo. Moreover, these results provide the first evidence that these markers have a capacity to indicate the probability of future disease

  14. Using alternative biological information in stock assessment: condition-corrected natural mortality of Eastern Baltic cod

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Casini, Michele; Eero, Margit; Carlshamre, Sofia

    2016-01-01

    The inclusion of biological and ecological aspects in the assessment of fish population status is one of the bases for an ecosystem-based fisheries management. During the past two decades the Eastern Baltic cod has experienced a drastic reduction in growth and body condition that may have affected......) assumed in the analytical stock assessment model. The results in terms of Spawning Stock Biomass (SSB), Fishing mortality (F) and Recruitment (R) in the final year from the stock assessment using M values adjusted for low condition were up to 40% different compared with the assessment assuming a constant...

  15. Integrated chemical and biological assessment of contaminant impacts in selected European coastal and offshore marine areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hylland, Ketil; Robinson, Craig D; Burgeot, Thierry; Martínez-Gómez, Concepción; Lang, Thomas; Svavarsson, Jörundur; Thain, John E; Vethaak, A Dick; Gubbins, Mattew J

    2017-03-01

    This paper reports a full assessment of results from ICON, an international workshop on marine integrated contaminant monitoring, encompassing different matrices (sediment, fish, mussels, gastropods), areas (Iceland, North Sea, Baltic, Wadden Sea, Seine estuary and the western Mediterranean) and endpoints (chemical analyses, biological effects). ICON has demonstrated the use of a framework for integrated contaminant assessment on European coastal and offshore areas. The assessment showed that chemical contamination did not always correspond with biological effects, indicating that both are required. The framework can be used to develop assessments for EU directives. If a 95% target were to be used as a regional indicator of MSFD GES, Iceland and offshore North Sea would achieve the target using the ICON dataset, but inshore North Sea, Baltic and Spanish Mediterranean regions would fail. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Biological effects of anthropogenic chemical stress: Tools for the assessment of ecosystem health (BEAST)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lehtonen, Kari K.; Sundelin, Brita; Lang, Thomas

    In the Baltic Sea Action Plan the urgent need to develop biological effects monitoring of hazardous substances and the assessment of ecosystem health has been clearly indicated. These goals will be tackled in the newly launched BEAST project (Biological Effects of Anthropogenic Chemical Stress...... of Finland, Gulf of Riga, Gulf of Gdansk and the Belt Sea, most of which are characterised by scarce data on biological effects of hazardous substances. The data acquired will be combined with previous data (e.g. national monitoring activities, case studies, EU BEEP project) to reach the goals of WP2 and WP3....... The BEAST project involves 16 partner institutions from all nine Baltic Sea countries, being thereby the largest international effort in this field conducted in the area. In this presentation, the outline of a joint multidiciplinary research scheme for the assessment of ecosystem health of the Gulf...

  17. Developing biologically-based assessment tools for physical therapy management of neck pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacDermid, Joy C; Gross, Anita R; Galea, Victoria; McLaughlin, Laurie M; Parkinson, William L; Woodhouse, Linda J

    2009-05-01

    Neck pain is a common and episodic condition that is treated using a spectrum of interventions known to be moderately effective but is associated with a significant incidence of chronic pain. Recently, there has been increased focus on defining biological aspects of neck pain. Studies have indicated that neurophysiological, biomechanical, and motor control abnormalities are present and may be useful either in prognosis or classification. We review some of these findings in the context of our own work defining biological markers that may form the basis for clinical tests that can be used for prognosis, classification, or outcome evaluation in patients with neck pain. We have identified abnormalities in neurophysiology using quantitative sensory testing (vibration, touch, and current perception) and response to cold provocation that are related to neck disability. We have identified altered muscle biochemistry by measuring circulating muscle proteins in a lumbar surgery model and are now applying those methods to whiplash injury. We have incorporated capnography into treatment to address central physiological changes present in some patients by monitoring and training CO2 levels. We have developed an innovative new test, the Neck Walk Index, that captures abnormal control of head movement during slow gait as a means of differentiating patients with neck pain from either unaffected controls or individuals with other pathologies. We have used time-varying 3-dimensional joint orientation kinematics to assess deficits in motor control during an upper extremity reach task, the results showing that poor coordination and control of the shoulder girdle leads to shoulder guarding and inconsistencies in elbow joint movement. Despite some promising early results, future research is needed to determine how these measures help clinicians to diagnose, evaluate, and forecast future outcome for patients who present with neck pain. Diagnosis, level 5.

  18. [The assessment of biological maturation for talent selection - which method can be used?].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, L; Müller, E; Hildebrandt, C; Kapelari, K; Raschner, C

    2015-03-01

    the plot lie within the limits; consequently, there is concordance between the two methods with regard to estimating biological maturation. The ICC(3,1) statistics showed a highly significant correlation: p = 0.002, ICC (95 % CI) = 0.48 (0.13 - 0.69). The prediction equations to determine APHV seem to be a valid method of assessing the biological maturity status of youths aged 10 - 13 years. The percentage of pupils classified as on time, early or late maturing did not differ significantly between the classifications based on the two methods. Also the Bland-Altman analysis proved the concordance between the two methods. The RAE could be influenced and strengthened by the biological age in sports in which advantages in maturity parameters are important. Athletes born early in the selection year, who are also at the same time advanced in maturity, might be advantaged in the selection process. However, since the prediction equations seem to be valid, this method can be used in the future in the talent selection process in order to not disadvantage late-maturing athletes, which in turn could result in the reduction of the occurrence of the RAE in various types of sports in the future. In talent selection processes the growth spurt and the implemented changes in proportions between core and the extremities are often not considered; although it was shown that during this period, athletes showed poor performances in physical fitness. Since physical fitness is an important criterion in talent selection processes, athletes who go through their individual peak growth spurt at the time of selection have disadvantages due to the diverse proportions. As a consequence, it seems important to know the athlete's APHV in order to consider the variations in physical performance caused by developmental changes. The prediction equations to determine APHV include the leg length and sitting height in order to consider the diverse proportions between core and extremities; hence

  19. Biological assessment for the effluent reduction program, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, New Mexico

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cross, S.P.

    1996-08-01

    This report describes the biological assessment for the effluent recution program proposed to occur within the boundaries of Los Alamos National Laboratory. Potential effects on wetland plants and on threatened and endangered species are discussed, along with a detailed description of the individual outfalls resulting from the effluent reduction program.

  20. Assessment of the Effectiveness of the Studio Format in Introductory Undergraduate Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montelone, Beth A.; Rintoul, David A.; Williams, Larry G.

    2008-01-01

    Kansas State University converted its introductory biology course, previously taught as an audio-tutorial (A-T), to a studio format in 1997. We share with others information about the process involved and present assessment data for the studio format course that address 1) student exam performance in A-T and studio; 2) student course grades in A-T…

  1. Application of biological indices in the assessment of pollution in the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Application of biological indices in the assessment of pollution in the Mfoundi River Basin (Cameroon). G A Ajeagah, MS Foto, T Njine. Abstract. No Abstract. JCAS Vol. 6 (2) 2006: pp. 91-98. Full Text: EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT · DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT · AJOL African ...

  2. Biohorizons: An eConference to Assess Human Biology in Large, First-Year Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moni, Roger W.; Moni, Karen B.; Poronnik, Philip; Lluka, Lesley J.

    2007-01-01

    The authors detail the design, implementation and evaluation of an eConference entitled "Biohorizons," using a presage-process-product model to describe the development of an eLearning community. Biohorizons was a summative learning and assessment task aiming to introduce large classes of first-year Human Biology students to the practices of…

  3. Biological assessment: water hyacinth control program for the Sacramento/ San Joaquin River Delta of California

    Science.gov (United States)

    A detailed Biological Assessment was developed for the proposed Areawide Water Hyacinth Control Program to outline the procedures that will be used to control this invasive aquatic plant in the Sacramento/ San Joaquin River Delta, and to help determine if this action is expected to threaten endanger...

  4. The use of Biological Index of Pollution (BIP) in assessing quality of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The biological index of pollution (BIP) which hinges on the responses of aquatic biota to pollution of water sources was used to assess the quality of some water sources in Zaria area, Nigeria. Water samples were collected from 15 stations comprising three open water sources (lakes) and twelve hand-dug wells on a ...

  5. Assessing the left main stem in the cardiac catheterization laboratory. What is "significant"? Function, imaging or both?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kassimis, George; de Maria, Giovanni Luigi; Patel, Niket; Raina, Tushar; Scott, Peter; Kharbanda, Rajesh K; Banning, Adrian P

    2017-06-20

    Revascularization of significant Left Main Stem (LMS) disease improves clinical outcomes. This can be achieved through either Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting or Percutaneous coronary intervention. Defining a significant stenosis of the LMS can be challenging and debatable, as most data have been derived using angiographic assessment alone, with a threshold of 50% luminal stenosis used as a marker of functional significance. The use of adjunctive technologies like Intravascular Ultrasound and Fractional Flow Reserve has improved our ability to accurately assess the anatomical severity and physiological significance of coronary artery stenoses, much more so, than can be achieved through conventional angiography alone. An improved assessment of LMS disease through these adjunctive techniques offers procedural and clinical benefits. Rather than focus on the preferred methods of revascularisation, this article aims to highlight the common pitfalls and misconceptions in the assessment of LMS stenoses. We also propose a simple algorithm for the assessment of LMS disease to help guide revascularisation decisions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Applying an Avian Index of Biological Integrity to Assess and Monitor Arid and Semi-arid Riparian Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    ERDC TN-EMRRP-RQ-01 January 2009 Applying an Avian Index of Biological Integrity to Assess and Monitor Arid and Semi - arid Riparian Ecosystems by...00-2009 to 00-00-2009 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Applying an Avian Index of Biological Integrity to Assess and Monitor Arid and Semi - arid Riparian...biological integrity to assess and monitor arid and semi - arid riparian eco- systems. EMRRP Technical Notes Collection (ERDC TN-EMRRP-RQ-01). Vicksburg, MS

  7. Impact of calcium and TOC on biological acidification assessment in Norwegian rivers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Susanne C

    2011-02-15

    Acidification continues to be a major impact in freshwaters of northern Europe, and the biotic response to chemical recovery from acidification is often not a straightforward process. The focus on biological recovery is relevant within the context of the EU Water Framework Directive, where a biological monitoring system is needed that detects differences in fauna and flora compared to undisturbed reference conditions. In order to verify true reference sites for biological analyses, expected river pH is modeled based on Ca and TOC, and 94% of variability in pH at reference sites is explained by Ca alone, while 98% is explained by a combination of Ca and TOC. Based on 59 samples from 28 reference sites, compared to 547 samples from 285 non-reference sites, the impact of calcium and total organic carbon (TOC) on benthic algae species composition, expressed as acidification index periphyton (AIP), is analyzed. Rivers with a high Ca concentration have a naturally higher AIP, and TOC affects reference AIP only at low Ca concentrations. Four biological river types are needed for assessment of river acidification in Norway based on benthic algae: very calcium-poor, humic rivers (CaTOC>2 mg/l); very calcium-poor, clear rivers (CaTOC4 mg/l). A biological assessment system for river acidification in Norway based on benthic algae is presented, following the demands of the Water Framework Directive. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Conceptual Elements: A Detailed Framework to Support and Assess Student Learning of Biology Core Concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cary, Tawnya; Branchaw, Janet

    2017-01-01

    The Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education: Call to Action report has inspired and supported a nationwide movement to restructure undergraduate biology curricula to address overarching disciplinary concepts and competencies. The report outlines the concepts and competencies generally but does not provide a detailed framework to guide the development of the learning outcomes, instructional materials, and assessment instruments needed to create a reformed biology curriculum. In this essay, we present a detailed Vision and Change core concept framework that articulates key components that transcend subdisciplines and scales for each overarching biological concept, the Conceptual Elements (CE) Framework. The CE Framework was developed using a grassroots approach of iterative revision and incorporates feedback from more than 60 biologists and undergraduate biology educators from across the United States. The final validation step resulted in strong national consensus, with greater than 92% of responders agreeing that each core concept list was ready for use by the biological sciences community, as determined by scientific accuracy and completeness. In addition, we describe in detail how educators and departments can use the CE Framework to guide and document reformation of individual courses as well as entire curricula. PMID:28450444

  9. Assessment of biological effects of environmental pollution along the NW Mediterranean Sea using mussels as sentinel organisms

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zorita, Izaskun [Biologia Zelularra eta Histologia Laborategia, Zoologia eta Biologia Zelularra Saila, Zientzia eta Teknologia Fakultatea, Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea/Univ. del Pais Vasco, 644 P.K., E-48080 Bilbao, Basque Country (Spain); Apraiz, Itxaso [Biologia Zelularra eta Histologia Laborategia, Zoologia eta Biologia Zelularra Saila, Zientzia eta Teknologia Fakultatea, Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea/Univ. del Pais Vasco, 644 P.K., E-48080 Bilbao, Basque Country (Spain); Ortiz-Zarragoitia, Maren [Biologia Zelularra eta Histologia Laborategia, Zoologia eta Biologia Zelularra Saila, Zientzia eta Teknologia Fakultatea, Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea/Univ. del Pais Vasco, 644 P.K., E-48080 Bilbao, Basque Country (Spain); Orbea, Amaia [Biologia Zelularra eta Histologia Laborategia, Zoologia eta Biologia Zelularra Saila, Zientzia eta Teknologia Fakultatea, Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea/Univ. del Pais Vasco, 644 P.K., E-48080 Bilbao, Basque Country (Spain); Cancio, Ibon [Biologia Zelularra eta Histologia Laborategia, Zoologia eta Biologia Zelularra Saila, Zientzia eta Teknologia Fakultatea, Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea/Univ. del Pais Vasco, 644 P.K., E-48080 Bilbao, Basque Country (Spain); Soto, Manu [Biologia Zelularra eta Histologia Laborategia, Zoologia eta Biologia Zelularra Saila, Zientzia eta Teknologia Fakultatea, Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea/Univ. del Pais Vasco, 644 P.K., E-48080 Bilbao, Basque Country (Spain); Marigomez, Ionan [Biologia Zelularra eta Histologia Laborategia, Zoologia eta Biologia Zelularra Saila, Zientzia eta Teknologia Fakultatea, Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea/Univ. del Pais Vasco, 644 P.K., E-48080 Bilbao, Basque Country (Spain); Cajaraville, Miren P. [Biologia Zelularra eta Histologia Laborategia, Zoologia eta Biologia Zelularra Saila, Zientzia eta Teknologia Fakultatea, Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea/Univ. del Pais Vasco, 644 P.K., E-48080 Bilbao, Basque Country (Spain)]. E-mail: mirenp.cajaraville@ehu.es

    2007-07-15

    With the aim of assessing the biological effects of pollution along three gradients of pollution in the NW Mediterranean Sea, a biomonitoring survey was implemented using a battery of biomarkers (lysosomal membrane stability, lysosomal structural changes, metallothionein (MT) induction and peroxisome proliferation) in mussels over a period of two years as part of the EU-funded BEEP project. Mussels from the most impacted zones (Fos, Genova and Barcelona harbours) showed enlarged lysosomes accompanied by reduced labilisation period of lysosomal membranes, indicating disturbed health. MT levels did not reveal significant differences between stations and were significantly correlated with gonad index, suggesting that they were influenced by gamete development. Peroxisomal acyl-CoA oxidase (AOX) activity was significantly inhibited in polluted stations possibly due to interactions among mixtures of pollutants. In conclusion, the application of a battery of effect and exposure biomarkers provided relevant data for the assessment of biological effects of environmental pollution along the NW Mediterranean Sea. - The biomarker approach is suitable for assessment of environmental pollution in the NW Mediterranean Sea.

  10. A Validation Study of the Performance Indicators and Learner Outcomes of Kentucky's Alternate Assessment for Students with Significant Disabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinert, Harold L.; Kearns, Jacqui Farmer

    1999-01-01

    A survey of 44 national authorities in best practices for students with severe cognitive disabilities found a high degree of professional congruence on the core of best practices embodied in the performance criteria for Kentucky's alternate assessment for students with significant disabilities. Concerns about more limited learner outcomes are…

  11. Are significant others able accurately to assess fatigue, exertion fatigue and types of fatigue in domiciliary heart patients?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tiesinga, L J; Dassen, T W N; Halfens, RJG; Bernink, PJLM; Niemeijer, M G; van den Heuvel, W.J.A.

    2001-01-01

    Although fatigue is recognized as a subjective and person-elated diagnosis both in patients and in healthy subjects, there have been no studies performed to show whether 'significant others' surrounding fatigued subjects are able to assess accurately the level of fatigue that exists in patients. The

  12. Uncertainties in the assessment of ‘‘significant effect’’ on the Dutch Natura 2000 Wadden Sea site

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Floor, J.R.; Koppen, van C.S.A.; Tatenhove, van J.P.M.

    2016-01-01

    Natura 2000, the nature network based on the European Bird and Habitat Directives, is explicitly grounded on ecological science. To acquire a permit under the Dutch Nature Conservation Act, an appropriate assessment of significant effects must be conducted based on the best available scientific

  13. 75 FR 14637 - James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant; Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-03-26

    ... COMMISSION James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant; Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant...), for the operation of the James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant (JAFNPP) located in Oswego County... related to operation of James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant Power Authority of the State of New York...

  14. 62 FR 56152 - Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for the BRAC 95 Disposal and Refuse...

    Science.gov (United States)

    1997-10-29

    ... environment. Issuance of a FNSI would be appropriate. An Environmental Impact Statement is not required prior... Department of the Army Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for the BRAC 95 Disposal and Refuse of the Detroit Army Tank Plant, Warren, Michigan AGENCY: Department of the Army, DoD...

  15. Noninvasive Assessment of Cell Fate and Biology in Transplanted Mesenchymal Stem Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franchi, Federico; Rodriguez-Porcel, Martin

    2017-01-01

    Recently, molecular imaging has become a conditio sine qua non for cell-based regenerative medicine. Developments in molecular imaging techniques, such as reporter gene technology, have increasingly enabled the noninvasive assessment of the fate and biology of cells after cardiovascular applications. In this context, bioluminescence imaging is the most commonly used imaging modality in small animal models of preclinical studies. Here, we present a detailed protocol of a reporter gene imaging approach for monitoring the viability and biology of Mesenchymal Stem Cells transplanted in a mouse model of myocardial ischemia reperfusion injury.

  16. Radon as a medicine. Therapeutic effectiveness, biological mechanism and comparative risk assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Deetjen, Peter; Falkenbach, Albrecht; Harder, Dietrich; Joeckel, Hans; Kaul, Alexander; Philipsborn, Henning von

    2014-07-01

    Proofs of the therapeutic efficiency of balneological radon applications administered to patients suffering from rheumatic diseases, investigations into the biological action mechanism associated with the alpha particles emitted by radon and its radioactive daughter products, and the comparative risk assessment of radon treatment and medicinal pain therapy have been the research projects whose results are summarized in this book. Controlled clinical studies, if possible performed as prospective, randomized and placebo-controlled double blind studies, have given evidence that the therapeutic effects of balneological radon applications - long-lasting pain reduction and reduced consumption of medicines compared with controls - are significantly persisting over many post-treatment months. The molecular and cellular mechanism of action underlying these long-lasting therapeutic effects has been identified as the down-regulation of cellular immune responses, initiated by cellular apoptosis sequential to low alpha particle doses and by the subsequent release of anti-inflammatory cytokines. The unwanted side-effects of non-steroidal anti-rheumatic drug treatments have to be compared with the absence of side effects from the balneological radon applications which merely involve radiation doses well below the mean value and the fluctuation width of the annual doses attributable to everybody's natural radiation exposure.

  17. Assessment of the Potential Biological Activity of Low Molecular Weight Metabolites of Freshwater Macrophytes with QSAR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evgeny A. Kurashov

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper focuses on the assessment of the spectrum of biological activities (antineoplastic, anti-inflammatory, antifungal, and antibacterial with PASS (Prediction of Activity Spectra for Substances for the major components of three macrophytes widespread in the Holarctic species of freshwater, emergent macrophyte with floating leaves, Nuphar lutea (L. Sm., and two species of submergent macrophyte groups, Ceratophyllum demersum L. and Potamogeton obtusifolius (Mert. et Koch, for the discovery of their ecological and pharmacological potential. The predicted probability of anti-inflammatory or antineoplastic activities above 0.8 was observed for twenty compounds. The same compounds were also characterized by high probability of antifungal and antibacterial activity. Six metabolites, namely, hexanal, pentadecanal, tetradecanoic acid, dibutyl phthalate, hexadecanoic acid, and manool, were a part of the major components of all three studied plants, indicating their high ecological significance and a certain universalism in their use by various species of water plants for the implementation of ecological and biochemical functions. This report underlines the role of identified compounds not only as important components in regulation of biochemical and metabolic pathways and processes in aquatic ecological systems, but also as potential pharmacological agents in the fight against different diseases.

  18. Biological assessment of remedial action at the abandoned uranium mill tailings site near Naturita, Colorado

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1996-03-01

    Pursuant to the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA) of 1978, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is proposing to conduct remedial action to clean up the residual radioactive materials (RRM) at the Naturita uranium processing site in Colorado. The Naturita site is in Montrose County, Colorado, and is approximately 2 miles (mi) (3 kilometer [km]) from the unincorporated town of Naturita. The proposed remedial action is to remove the RRM from the Naturita site to the Upper Burbank Quarry at the Uravan disposal site. To address the potential impacts of the remedial action on threatened and endangered species, the DOE prepared this biological assessment. Informal consultations with the U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) were initiated in 1986, and the FWS provided a list of the threatened and endangered species that may occur in the Naturita study area. This list was updated by two FWS letters in 1988 and by verbal communication in 1990. A biological assessment was included in the environmental assessment (EA) of the proposed remedial action that was prepared in 1990. This EA addressed the impacts of moving the Naturita RRM to the Dry Flats disposal site. In 1993, the design for the Dry Flats disposal alternative was changed. The FWS was again consulted in 1993 and provided a new list of threatened and endangered species that may occur in the Naturita study area. The Naturita EA and the biological assessment were revised in response to these changes. In 1994, remedial action was delayed because an alternate disposal site was being considered. The DOE decided to move the FIRM at the Naturita site to the Upper Burbank Quarry at the Uravan site. Due to this delay, the FWS was consulted in 1995 and a list of threatened and endangered species was provided. This biological assessment is a revision of the assessment attached to the Naturita EA and addresses moving the Naturita RRM to the Upper Burbank Quarry disposal site.

  19. Risk assessment, eradication, and biological control: global efforts to limit Australian acacia invasions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, John R.U.; Gairifo, Carla; Gibson, Michelle R.; Arianoutsou, Margarita; Bakar, Baki B.; Baret, Stephane; Celesti-Grapow, Laura; DiTomaso, Joseph M.; Dufour-Dror, Jean-Marc; Kueffer, Christoph; Kull, Christian A.; Hoffman, John H.; Impson, Fiona A.C.; Loope, Lloyd L.; Marchante, Elizabete; Harchante, Helia; Moore, Joslin L.; Murphy, Daniel J.; Tassin, Jacques; Witt, Arne; Zenni, Rafael D.; Richardson, David M.

    2011-01-01

    Aim Many Australian Acacia species have been planted around the world, some are highly valued, some are invasive, and some are both highly valued and invasive. We review global efforts to minimize the risk and limit the impact of invasions in this widely used plant group. Location Global. Methods Using information from literature sources, knowledge and experience of the authors, and the responses from a questionnaire sent to experts around the world, we reviewed: (1) a generalized life cycle of Australian acacias and how to control each life stage, (2) different management approaches and (3) what is required to help limit or prevent invasions. Results Relatively few Australian acacias have been introduced in large numbers, but all species with a long and extensive history of planting have become invasive somewhere. Australian acacias, as a group, have a high risk of becoming invasive and causing significant impacts as determined by existing assessment schemes. Moreover, in most situations, long-lived seed banks mean it is very difficult to control established infestations. Control has focused almost exclusively on widespread invaders, and eradication has rarely been attempted. Classical biological control is being used in South Africa with increasing success. Main conclusions A greater emphasis on pro-active rather than reactive management is required given the difficulties managing established invasions of Australian acacias. Adverse effects of proposed new introductions can be minimized by conducting detailed risk assessments in advance, planning for on-going monitoring and management, and ensuring resources are in place for long-term mitigation. Benign alternatives (e.g. sterile hybrids) could be developed to replace existing utilized taxa. Eradication should be set as a management goal more often to reduce the invasion debt. Introducing classical biological control agents that have a successful track-record in South Africa to other regions and identifying new

  20. Biological Significance of Photoreceptor Photocycle Length: VIVID Photocycle Governs the Dynamic VIVID-White Collar Complex Pool Mediating Photo-adaptation and Response to Changes in Light Intensity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arko Dasgupta

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Most organisms on earth sense light through the use of chromophore-bearing photoreceptive proteins with distinct and characteristic photocycle lengths, yet the biological significance of this adduct decay length is neither understood nor has been tested. In the filamentous fungus Neurospora crassa VIVID (VVD is a critical player in the process of photoadaptation, the attenuation of light-induced responses and the ability to maintain photosensitivity in response to changing light intensities. Detailed in vitro analysis of the photochemistry of the blue light sensing, FAD binding, LOV domain of VVD has revealed residues around the site of photo-adduct formation that influence the stability of the adduct state (light state, that is, altering the photocycle length. We have examined the biological significance of VVD photocycle length to photoadaptation and report that a double substitution mutant (vvdI74VI85V, previously shown to have a very fast light to dark state reversion in vitro, shows significantly reduced interaction with the White Collar Complex (WCC resulting in a substantial photoadaptation defect. This reduced interaction impacts photoreceptor transcription factor WHITE COLLAR-1 (WC-1 protein stability when N. crassa is exposed to light: The fast-reverting mutant VVD is unable to form a dynamic VVD-WCC pool of the size required for photoadaptation as assayed both by attenuation of gene expression and the ability to respond to increasing light intensity. Additionally, transcription of the clock gene frequency (frq is sensitive to changing light intensity in a wild-type strain but not in the fast photo-reversion mutant indicating that the establishment of this dynamic VVD-WCC pool is essential in general photobiology and circadian biology. Thus, VVD photocycle length appears sculpted to establish a VVD-WCC reservoir of sufficient size to sustain photoadaptation while maintaining sensitivity to changing light intensity. The great diversity

  1. The acquisition of dangerous biological materials: Technical facts sheets to assist risk assessments of 46 potential BW agents

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aceto, Donato Gonzalo [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Astuto-Gribble, Lisa M. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Gaudioso, Jennifer M. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2007-11-01

    Numerous terrorist organizations have openly expressed interest in producing and deploying biological weapons. However, a limiting factor for many terrorists has been the acquisition of dangerous biological agents, as evidenced by the very few successful instances of biological weapons use compared to the number of documented hoaxes. Biological agents vary greatly in their ability to cause loss of life and economic damage. Some agents, if released properly, can kill many people and cause an extensive number of secondary infections; other agents will sicken only a small number of people for a short period of time. Consequently, several biological agents can potentially be used to perpetrate a bioterrorism attack but few are likely capable of causing a high consequence event. It is crucial, from a US national security perspective, to more deeply understand the likelihood that terrorist organizations can acquire the range of these agents. Few studies have attempted to comprehensively compile the technical information directly relevant to the acquisition of dangerous bacteria, viruses and toxins. In this report, technical fact sheets were assembled for 46 potentially dangerous biological agents. Much of the information was taken from various research sources which could ultimately and significantly expedite and improve bioterrorism threat assessments. By systematically examining a number of specific agent characteristics included in these fact sheets, it may be possible to detect, target, and implement measures to thwart future terrorist acquisition attempts. In addition, the information in these fact sheets may be used as a tool to help laboratories gain a rudimentary understanding of how attractive a method laboratory theft is relative to other potential acquisition modes.

  2. Examining Gender Differences in Written Assessment Tasks in Biology: A Case Study of Evolutionary Explanations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Federer, Meghan Rector; Nehm, Ross H; Pearl, Dennis K

    2016-01-01

    Understanding sources of performance bias in science assessment provides important insights into whether science curricula and/or assessments are valid representations of student abilities. Research investigating assessment bias due to factors such as instrument structure, participant characteristics, and item types are well documented across a variety of disciplines. However, the relationships among these factors are unclear for tasks evaluating understanding through performance on scientific practices, such as explanation. Using item-response theory (Rasch analysis), we evaluated differences in performance by gender on a constructed-response (CR) assessment about natural selection (ACORNS). Three isomorphic item strands of the instrument were administered to a sample of undergraduate biology majors and nonmajors (Group 1: n = 662 [female = 51.6%]; G2: n = 184 [female = 55.9%]; G3: n = 642 [female = 55.1%]). Overall, our results identify relationships between item features and performance by gender; however, the effect is small in the majority of cases, suggesting that males and females tend to incorporate similar concepts into their CR explanations. These results highlight the importance of examining gender effects on performance in written assessment tasks in biology. © 2016 M. R. Federer et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  3. 75 FR 28233 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Asian Citrus Psyllid

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-20

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological... Asian citrus psyllid (Diaphorina citri Kuwayama). The environmental assessment considers the effects of...

  4. Are low but statistically significant levels of genetic differentiation in marine fishes 'biologically meaningful'? A case study of coastal Atlantic cod.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knutsen, H; Olsen, E M; Jorde, P E; Espeland, S H; André, C; Stenseth, N C

    2011-02-01

    A key question in many genetic studies on marine organisms is how to interpret a low but statistically significant level of genetic differentiation. Do such observations reflect a real phenomenon, or are they caused by confounding factors such as unrepresentative sampling or selective forces acting on the marker loci? Further, are low levels of differentiation biologically trivial, or can they represent a meaningful and perhaps important finding? We explored these issues in an empirical study on coastal Atlantic cod, combining temporally replicated genetic samples over a 10-year period with an extensive capture-mark-recapture study of individual mobility and population size. The genetic analyses revealed a pattern of differentiation between the inner part of the fjord and the open skerries area at the fjord entrance. Overall, genetic differentiation was weak (average F(ST)  = 0.0037), but nevertheless highly statistical significant and did not depend on particular loci that could be subject to selection. This spatial component dominated over temporal change, and temporal replicates clustered together throughout the 10-year period. Consistent with genetic results, the majority of the recaptured fish were found close to the point of release, with <1% of recaptured individuals dispersing between the inner fjord and outer skerries. We conclude that low levels of genetic differentiation in this marine fish can indeed be biologically meaningful, corresponding to separate, temporally persistent, local populations. We estimated the genetically effective sizes (N(e) ) of the two coastal cod populations to 198 and 542 and found a N(e) /N (spawner) ratio of 0.14. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  5. Assessment of Biology Majors’ Versus Nonmajors’ Views on Evolution, Creationism, and Intelligent Design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paz-y-Miño C., Guillermo

    2016-01-01

    The controversy around evolution, creationism, and intelligent design resides in a historical struggle between scientific knowledge and popular belief. Four hundred seventy-six students (biology majors n=237, nonmajors n=239) at a secular liberal arts private university in Northeastern United States responded to a five-question survey to assess their views about: (1) evolution, creationism, and intelligent design in the science class; (2) students’ attitudes toward evolution; (3) students’ position about the teaching of human evolution; (4) evolution in science exams; and (5) students’ willingness to discuss evolution openly. There were 60.6% of biology majors and 42% of nonmajors supported the exclusive teaching of evolution in the science class, while 45.3% of nonmajors and 32% of majors were willing to learn equally about evolution, creationism, and intelligent design (question 1); 70.5% of biology majors and 55.6% of nonmajors valued the factual explanations evolution provides about the origin of life and its place in the universe (question 2); 78% of the combined responders (majors plus nonmajors) preferred science courses where evolution is discussed comprehensively and humans are part of it (question 3); 69% of the combined responders (majors plus nonmajors) had no problem answering questions concerning evolution in science exams (question 4); 48.1% of biology majors and 26.8% of nonmajors accepted evolution and expressed it openly, but 18.2% of the former and 14.2% of the latter accepted evolution privately; 46% of nonmajors and 29.1% of biology majors were reluctant to comment on this topic (question 5). Combined open plus private acceptance of evolution within biology majors increased with seniority, from freshman (60.7%) to seniors (81%), presumably due to gradual exposure to upper-division biology courses with evolutionary content. College curricular/pedagogical reform should fortify evolution literacy at all education levels, particularly among

  6. Assessment of Biology Majors' Versus Nonmajors' Views on Evolution, Creationism, and Intelligent Design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paz-Y-Miño C, Guillermo; Espinosa, Avelina

    2009-03-01

    The controversy around evolution, creationism, and intelligent design resides in a historical struggle between scientific knowledge and popular belief. Four hundred seventy-six students (biology majors n=237, nonmajors n=239) at a secular liberal arts private university in Northeastern United States responded to a five-question survey to assess their views about: (1) evolution, creationism, and intelligent design in the science class; (2) students' attitudes toward evolution; (3) students' position about the teaching of human evolution; (4) evolution in science exams; and (5) students' willingness to discuss evolution openly. There were 60.6% of biology majors and 42% of nonmajors supported the exclusive teaching of evolution in the science class, while 45.3% of nonmajors and 32% of majors were willing to learn equally about evolution, creationism, and intelligent design (question 1); 70.5% of biology majors and 55.6% of nonmajors valued the factual explanations evolution provides about the origin of life and its place in the universe (question 2); 78% of the combined responders (majors plus nonmajors) preferred science courses where evolution is discussed comprehensively and humans are part of it (question 3); 69% of the combined responders (majors plus nonmajors) had no problem answering questions concerning evolution in science exams (question 4); 48.1% of biology majors and 26.8% of nonmajors accepted evolution and expressed it openly, but 18.2% of the former and 14.2% of the latter accepted evolution privately; 46% of nonmajors and 29.1% of biology majors were reluctant to comment on this topic (question 5). Combined open plus private acceptance of evolution within biology majors increased with seniority, from freshman (60.7%) to seniors (81%), presumably due to gradual exposure to upper-division biology courses with evolutionary content. College curricular/pedagogical reform should fortify evolution literacy at all education levels, particularly among

  7. Statistical assessment of biosimilarity based on relative distance between follow-on biologics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Seung-Ho; Chow, Shein-Chung

    2013-02-10

    In this paper, we propose a new three-arm parallel design to investigate biosimilarity between a biosimilar product and an innovator biological product by using relative distance based on the absolute mean differences. In the proposed design, one arm is for the biosimilar product and the other two arms are for the innovator biological product. The distance between the biosimilar product and the innovator biological product is defined by the absolute mean different between two products. Similarly, the distance between the innovator biological products from two difference batches is defined. The relative distance is defined as the ratio of the two distances whose denominator is the distance between the innovator biological products from two different batches. In the proposed design, if the relative distance is less than a prespecified margin, we claim that the two products are claimed to be biosimilar. The statistical test based on the ratio estimator and the linearization method are developed to assess biosimilarity. The power functions of two tests are derived in large sample and compared numerically. Because the statistical test based on the ratio estimator is more powerful than the linearization method, we recommend the statistical test based on the ratio estimator. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  8. Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact: Pond B Dam Repair Project at the Savannah River Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    N/A

    1999-09-27

    The Department of Energy (DOE) has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) (DOE/EA-1285) for the proposed repair of the Pond B dam at the Savannah River Site (SRS), located near Aiken, South Carolina. Based on the analyses in the EA, DOE has determined that the proposed action is not a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment within the meaning of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA). Therefore, the preparation of an environmental impact statement (EIS) is not required, and DOE is issuing this Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) and Floodplain Statement of Findings.

  9. Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact: Implementation of the Wetland Mitigation Bank Program at the Savannah River Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    N/A

    1999-04-28

    The Department of Energy (DOE) has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) (DOE/EA-1205) for the proposed implementation of a wetland mitigation bank program at the Savannah River Site (SRS), located near Aiken, South Carolina. Based on the analyses in the EA, DOE has determined that the proposed action is not a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment within the meaning of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA). Therefore, the preparation of an environmental impact statement (EIS) is not required, and DOE is issuing this Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) and Floodplain Statement of Findings.

  10. Simplified method for the biological assessment of the quality of fresh and slightly brackish water

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dresscher, T.G.N.; van der Mark, H.

    1976-03-31

    A simplified method for the biological assessment of the saprobic quality of surface water is described. The method has the advantage that it is unnecessary to determine accurately the species of organisms present in the sample, which must be done when existing saprobic systems are used. The method described here cannot be used when there is a great abundance of a single species and a very strong environmental disturbance must be assumed.

  11. Significant reduction in hospital-acquired thrombosis: impact of national risk assessment and real-time feedback.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowswell, Huw Raymond; Nokes, Timothy J C

    2017-01-01

    Since 2010, National Health Service hospitals in England have been incentivised to risk assess for Venous Thromboembolism (VTE) in all adult patients admitted, using a national tool. We studied the impact of this, together with local real-time reporting of VTE events to senior clinicians, on cases of hospital-acquired thrombosis (HAT) diagnosed, since 2010. This was an observational cohort study reviewing all cases of VTE diagnosed between January 2010 and December 2016 in a single teaching hospital. These were matched against the number of patients admitted to produce crude incidence rates per thousand admissions. Similarly, all cases associated with inadequate thromboprophylaxis (TP) measures were documented over the same period. By the end of 2010, with 70% compliance with VTE risk assessment, improving to 90% (the national target) early in 2011, there were 217 HAT events from 103 845 admissions. In 2016, there were 176 HAT events from 119 128 admissions, being a significant reduction, relative risk (RR) 0.718 (95% CI 0.589 to 0.875; p=0.001). In 2010, there were 50 of 217 HAT events associated with inadequate TP, falling to 7 of 176 in 2016, also a significant reduction, RR 0.140 (95% CI 0.065 to 0.300; p=0.0001). National guidance on VTE prevention and mandatory risk assessment linked to local real-time reporting of VTE events are associated with significant reductions both in total HAT events and those associated with inadequate TP.

  12. Towards a rigorous assessment of systems biology models: the DREAM3 challenges.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert J Prill

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Systems biology has embraced computational modeling in response to the quantitative nature and increasing scale of contemporary data sets. The onslaught of data is accelerating as molecular profiling technology evolves. The Dialogue for Reverse Engineering Assessments and Methods (DREAM is a community effort to catalyze discussion about the design, application, and assessment of systems biology models through annual reverse-engineering challenges.We describe our assessments of the four challenges associated with the third DREAM conference which came to be known as the DREAM3 challenges: signaling cascade identification, signaling response prediction, gene expression prediction, and the DREAM3 in silico network challenge. The challenges, based on anonymized data sets, tested participants in network inference and prediction of measurements. Forty teams submitted 413 predicted networks and measurement test sets. Overall, a handful of best-performer teams were identified, while a majority of teams made predictions that were equivalent to random. Counterintuitively, combining the predictions of multiple teams (including the weaker teams can in some cases improve predictive power beyond that of any single method.DREAM provides valuable feedback to practitioners of systems biology modeling. Lessons learned from the predictions of the community provide much-needed context for interpreting claims of efficacy of algorithms described in the scientific literature.

  13. Dual mode diffraction phase microscopy for quantitative functional assessment of biological cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Talaikova, N. A.; Popov, A. P.; Kalyanov, A. L.; Ryabukho, V. P.; Meglinski, I. V.

    2017-10-01

    A diffraction phase microscopy approach with a combined use of transmission and reflection imaging modes has been developed and applied for non-invasive quantitative assessment of the refractive index of red blood cells (RBCs). We present the theoretical background of signal formation for both imaging modes, accompanied by the results of experimental studies. We demonstrate that simultaneous use of the two modes has great potential for accurate assessment of the refractive index of biological cells, and we perform a reconstruction of spatial distribution of the refractive index of RBC in 3D.

  14. Quantifying restoration success and recovery in a metal-polluted stream: A 17-year assessment of physicochemical and biological responses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clements, W.H.; Vieira, N.K.M.; Church, S.E.

    2010-01-01

    Evaluating the effectiveness of stream restoration is often challenging because of the lack of pre-treatment data, narrow focus on physicochemical measures and insufficient post-restoration monitoring. Even when these fundamental elements are present, quantifying restoration success is difficult because of the challenges associated with distinguishing treatment effects from seasonal variation, episodic events and long-term climatic changes.2. We report results of one of the most comprehensive and continuous records of physical, chemical and biological data available to assess restoration success for a stream ecosystem in North America. Over a 17 year period we measured seasonal and annual changes in metal concentrations, physicochemical characteristics, macroinvertebrate communities, and brown trout Salmo trutta populations in the Arkansas River, a metal-contaminated stream in Colorado, USA.3. Although we observed significant improvements in water quality after treatment, the effectiveness of restoration varied temporally, spatially and among biological response variables. The fastest recovery was observed at stations where restoration eliminated point sources of metal contamination. Recovery of macroinvertebrates was significantly delayed at some stations because of residual sediment contamination and because extreme seasonal and episodic variation in metal concentrations prevented recolonization by sensitive species. Synthesis and applications. Because recovery trajectories after the removal of a stressor are often complex or nonlinear, long-term studies are necessary to assess restoration success within the context of episodic events and changes in regional climate. The observed variation in recovery among chemical and biological endpoints highlights the importance of developing objective criteria to assess restoration success. Although the rapid response of macroinvertebrates to reduced metal concentrations is encouraging, we have previously demonstrated that

  15. Detection of EGFR and COX-2 Expression by Immunohistochemical Method on a Tissue Microarray Section in Lung Cancer and Biological Significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xinyun WANG

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Background and objective Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2, which can regulate growth, invasion and metastasis of tumor through relevant signaling pathway, have been detected in a variety of solid tumors. The aim of this study is to investigate the biological significance of EGFR and COX-2 expression in lung cancer and the relationship between them. Methods The expression of EGFR and COX-2 was detected in 89 primary lung cancer tissues, 12 premaliganant lesions, 12 lymph node metastases, and 10 normal lung tissues as the control by immunohistochemical method on a tissue microarray section. Results EGFR protein was detectable in 59.6%, 41.7%, and 66.7% of primary lung cancer tissues, premalignant lesions and lymph node metastases, respectively; COX-2 protein was detectable in 52.8%, 41.7%, and 66.7% of primary lung cancer tissues, premalignant lesions and lymph node metastases, respectively, which were significantly higher than those of the control (P 0.05. COX-2 expression was related to gross type (P < 0.05. A highly positive correlation was observed between EGFR and COX-2 expression (P < 0.01. Conclusion Overexpression of EGFR and COX-2 may play an important role in the tumorgenesis, progression and malignancy of lung cancer. Detection of EGFR and COX-2 expression might be helpful to diagnosis and prognosis of lung cancer.

  16. Assessment of Knowledge of Participants on Basic Molecular Biology Techniques after 5-Day Intensive Molecular Biology Training Workshops in Nigeria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yisau, J. I.; Adagbada, A. O.; Bamidele, T.; Fowora, M.; Brai, B. I. C.; Adebesin, O.; Bamidele, M.; Fesobi, T.; Nwaokorie, F. O.; Ajayi, A.; Smith, S. I.

    2017-01-01

    The deployment of molecular biology techniques for diagnosis and research in Nigeria is faced with a number of challenges, including the cost of equipment and reagents coupled with the dearth of personnel skilled in the procedures and handling of equipment. Short molecular biology training workshops were conducted at the Nigerian Institute of…

  17. A biological tool to assess flow connectivity in reference temporary streams from the Mediterranean Basin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cid, N., E-mail: ncid@ub.edu [Grup de Recerca “Freshwater Ecology and Management (FEM)”, Departament d' Ecologia, Universitat de Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain); Verkaik, I. [Grup de Recerca “Freshwater Ecology and Management (FEM)”, Departament d' Ecologia, Universitat de Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain); García-Roger, E.M. [Grup de Recerca “Freshwater Ecology and Management (FEM)”, Departament d' Ecologia, Universitat de Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain); Institut Cavanilles de Biodiversitat i Biologia Evolutiva, Universitat de València (Spain); Rieradevall, M.; Bonada, N. [Grup de Recerca “Freshwater Ecology and Management (FEM)”, Departament d' Ecologia, Universitat de Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain); Sánchez-Montoya, M.M. [Department of Ecology and Hydrology, Regional Campus of International Excellence “Campus Mare Nostrum”—University of Murcia (Spain); Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB), Berlin (Germany); Gómez, R.; Suárez, M.L.; Vidal-Abarca, M.R. [Department of Ecology and Hydrology, Regional Campus of International Excellence “Campus Mare Nostrum”—University of Murcia (Spain); Demartini, D.; Buffagni, A.; Erba, S. [Instituto di Ricerca Sulle Acque (CNR-IRSA) (Italy); Karaouzas, I.; Skoulikidis, N. [Hellenic Center for Marine Research (HCMR) (Greece); Prat, N. [Grup de Recerca “Freshwater Ecology and Management (FEM)”, Departament d' Ecologia, Universitat de Barcelona, Catalonia (Spain)

    2016-01-01

    Many streams in the Mediterranean Basin have temporary flow regimes. While timing for seasonal drought is predictable, they undergo strong inter-annual variability in flow intensity. This high hydrological variability and associated ecological responses challenge the ecological status assessment of temporary streams, particularly when setting reference conditions. This study examined the effects of flow connectivity in aquatic macroinvertebrates from seven reference temporary streams across the Mediterranean Basin where hydrological variability and flow conditions are well studied. We tested for the effect of flow cessation on two streamflow indices and on community composition, and, by performing random forest and classification tree analyses we identified important biological predictors for classifying the aquatic state either as flowing or disconnected pools. Flow cessation was critical for one of the streamflow indices studied and for community composition. Macroinvertebrate families found to be important for classifying the aquatic state were Hydrophilidae, Simuliidae, Hydropsychidae, Planorbiidae, Heptageniidae and Gerridae. For biological traits, trait categories associated to feeding habits, food, locomotion and substrate relation were the most important and provided more accurate predictions compared to taxonomy. A combination of selected metrics and associated thresholds based on the most important biological predictors (i.e. Bio-AS Tool) were proposed in order to assess the aquatic state in reference temporary streams, especially in the absence of hydrological data. Although further development is needed, the tool can be of particular interest for monitoring, restoration, and conservation purposes, representing an important step towards an adequate management of temporary rivers not only in the Mediterranean Basin but also in other regions vulnerable to the effects of climate change. - Highlights: • The effect of flow connectivity on macroinvertebrate

  18. Biomarkers to Assess Possible Biological Effects on Reproductive Potential, Immune Function, and Energetic Fitness of Bottlenose Dolphins Exposed to Sounds Consistent with Naval Sonars

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-30

    Effects on Reproductive Potential, Immune Function, and Energetic Fitness of Bottlenose Dolphins Exposed to Sounds Consistent with Naval Sonars...novel biomarkers to examine whether significant sublethal responses to sonar-type sounds occur in bottlenose dolphins exposed to such sounds. The...SUBTITLE Biomarkers to Assess Possible Biological Effects on Reproductive Potential, Immune Function, and Energetic Fitness of Bottlenose Dolphins

  19. Development and Assessment of Modules to Integrate Quantitative Skills in Introductory Biology Courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffman, Kathleen; Leupen, Sarah; Dowell, Kathy; Kephart, Kerrie; Leips, Jeff

    2016-01-01

    Redesigning undergraduate biology courses to integrate quantitative reasoning and skill development is critical to prepare students for careers in modern medicine and scientific research. In this paper, we report on the development, implementation, and assessment of stand-alone modules that integrate quantitative reasoning into introductory biology courses. Modules are designed to improve skills in quantitative numeracy, interpreting data sets using visual tools, and making inferences about biological phenomena using mathematical/statistical models. We also examine demographic/background data that predict student improvement in these skills through exposure to these modules. We carried out pre/postassessment tests across four semesters and used student interviews in one semester to examine how students at different levels approached quantitative problems. We found that students improved in all skills in most semesters, although there was variation in the degree of improvement among skills from semester to semester. One demographic variable, transfer status, stood out as a major predictor of the degree to which students improved (transfer students achieved much lower gains every semester, despite the fact that pretest scores in each focus area were similar between transfer and nontransfer students). We propose that increased exposure to quantitative skill development in biology courses is effective at building competency in quantitative reasoning. © 2016 K. Hoffman, S. Leupen, et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  20. Assessment and evaluation of science process skills in secondary school biology laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kujawinski, Daniel Bernard

    Awareness of the importance of process skills in science education has increased, but practical methods of assessing student performance of these skills has received minimal attention. The purpose of this dissertation is to examine how student science process skills may be accurately and reliably measured and evaluated. A set of laboratory activities that emphasized process skills was developed by 12 science educators from the western New York area who were participants in a summer institute sponsored by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. These innovative laboratory activities were designed to be used in existing secondary school biology courses by students of different ages and ability levels. Student performance in the four general process categories of planning, performing, reasoning, and communicating was broken down into twenty specific, individual science process skills deemed important to science education. Nine teacher developers used these twelve activities, entirely and/or partially with their high school biology students during the 1995-1996 school year. Two types of assessment instruments were developed and field-tested for the purpose of evaluating student self evaluation and performance of the twenty individual science process skills. The first was an inventory that asked for the students' self-evaluation of their abilities to perform each of the twenty process skills based on the current year's laboratory experiences. The second was a set of three performance tasks which assessed the twenty skills and were to be completed by the students in a laboratory setting under supervision of their classroom teacher and the researcher. During May and early June, 1996, the student self-evaluation inventory and the three performance tasks were administered to 94 students of teachers in 6 schools who developed and used the activities (HH95, experimental group) and to 126 students of teachers in 9 schools that did not use the activities (HH96, control group). All

  1. Hazard identification and risk assessment for biologics targeting the immune system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weir, Andrea B

    2008-01-01

    Biologic pharmaceuticals include a variety of products, such as monoclonal antibodies, fusion proteins and cytokines. Products in those classes include immunomodulatory biologics, which are intended to enhance or diminish the activity of the immune system. Immunomodulatory biologics have been approved by the U.S. FDA for a variety of indications, including cancer and inflammatory conditions. Prior to gaining approval for marketing, sponsoring companies for all types of products must demonstrate a product's safety in toxicology studies conducted in animals and show safety and efficacy in clinical trials conducted in patients. The overall goal of toxicology studies, which applies to immunomodulatory and other product types, is to identify the hazards that products pose to humans. Because biologics are generally highly selective for specific targets (receptors/epitopes), conducting toxicology studies in animal models with the target is essential. Such animals are referred to as pharmacologically relevant. Endpoints routinely included in toxicology studies, such as hematology, organ weight and histopathology, can be used to assess the effect of a product on the structure of the immune system. Additionally, specialized endpoints, such as immunophenotyping and immune function tests, can be used to define effects of immunomodulatory products on the immune system. Following hazard identification, risks posed to patients are assessed and managed. Risks can be managed through clinical trial design and risk communication, a practice that applies to immunomodulatory and other product types. Examples of risk management in clinical trial design include establishing a safe starting dose, defining the appropriate patient population and establishing appropriate patient monitoring. Risk communication starts during clinical trials and continues after product approval. A combination of hazard identification, risk assessment and risk management allows for drug development to proceed

  2. Application of thresholds of potential concern and limits of acceptable change in the condition assessment of a significant wetland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogers, Kerrylee; Saintilan, Neil; Colloff, Matthew J; Wen, Li

    2013-10-01

    We propose a framework in which thresholds of potential concern (TPCs) and limits of acceptable change (LACs) are used in concert in the assessment of wetland condition and vulnerability and apply the framework in a case study. The lower Murrumbidgee River floodplain (the 'Lowbidgee') is one of the most ecologically important wetlands in Australia and the focus of intense management intervention by State and Federal government agencies. We used a targeted management stakeholder workshop to identify key values that contribute to the ecological significance of the Lowbidgee floodplain, and identified LACs that, if crossed, would signify the loss of significance. We then used conceptual models linking the condition of these values (wetland vegetation communities, waterbirds, fish species and the endangered southern bell frog) to measurable threat indicators, for which we defined a management goal and a TPC. We applied this framework to data collected across 70 wetland storages', or eco-hydrological units, at the peak of a prolonged drought (2008) and following extensive re-flooding (2010). At the suggestion of water and wetland mangers, we neither aggregated nor integrated indices but reported separately in a series of chloropleth maps. The resulting assessment clearly identified the effect of rewetting in restoring indicators within TPC in most cases, for most storages. The scale of assessment was useful in informing the targeted and timely management intervention and provided a context for retaining and utilising monitoring information in an adaptive management context.

  3. Assessing the application of advanced oxidation processes, and their combination with biological treatment, to effluents from pulp and paper industry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merayo, Noemí; Hermosilla, Daphne; Blanco, Laura; Cortijo, Luis; Blanco, Angeles

    2013-11-15

    The closure of water circuits within pulp and paper mills has resulted in a higher contamination load of the final mill effluent, which must consequently be further treated in many cases to meet the standards imposed by the legislation in force. Different treatment strategies based on advanced oxidation processes (ozonation and TiO2-photocatalysis), and their combination with biological treatment (MBR), are herein assessed for effluents of a recycled paper mill and a kraft pulp mill. Ozone treatment achieved the highest efficiency of all. The consumption of 2.4 g O3 L(-1) resulted in about a 60% COD reduction treating the effluent from the kraft pulp mill at an initial pH=7; although it only reached about a 35% COD removal for the effluent of the recycled paper mill. Otherwise, photocatalysis achieved about a 20-30% reduction of the COD for both type of effluents. In addition, the effluent from the recycled paper mill showed a higher biodegradability, so combinations of these AOPs with biological treatment were tested. As a result, photocatalysis did not report any significant COD reduction improvement whether being performed as pre- or post-treatment of the biological process; whereas the use of ozonation as post-biological treatment enhanced COD removal a further 10%, summing up a total 90% reduction of the COD for the combined treatment, as well as it also supposed an increase of the presence of volatile fatty acids, which might ultimately enable the resultant wastewater to be recirculated back to further biological treatment. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. The white mullet (Mugil curema) as biological indicator to assess environmental stress in tropical coastal lagoons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Gasca, Alejandra; Ríos-Sicairos, Julián; Hernández-Cornejo, Rubí; Cunha, Isabel; Gutiérrez, Jesús N; Plascencia-González, Héctor; de la Parra, Luz María García; Abad-Rosales, Selene; Betancourt-Lozano, Miguel

    2016-12-01

    Several coastal lagoons and estuaries in Mexico receive untreated domestic and industrial discharges which contain complex mixtures of contaminants. In order to assess the effects of chemical contamination, we used the White mullet (Mugil curema) as biological indicator. We worked in two estuaries located in Northwest Mexico: Urias (highly polluted) and Teacapan (less polluted, therefore used as reference site). We measured several endpoints at different levels of biological organization: vitellogenin transcription in males as biomarker of estrogenic contamination, as well as reproductive, morphological (deformities), morphometric, and meristic parameters. Total RNA was isolated from the liver, and a partial sequence of the mullet vitellogenin gene was obtained; gene expression was analyzed by quantitative PCR. At the same time, gonad samples were analyzed by histologic techniques to determine sex ratios and the reproductive cycle stage. The reproductive season was detected from February to June in both sites, but the gonadosomatic index was consistently higher in Teacapan. Sex ratios were female-biased in both estuaries, and one intersex gonad and several malformations were found in fish from Urias. Vitellogenin gene transcription in males was detected in both sites, although gene expression was slightly higher in Urias. The results obtained in this study indicate that biological effects of contamination are evident in fish, environmental estrogens may be present in both estuaries, and the white mullet is useful as biological indicator to identify and characterize environmental stressors in tropical coastal ecosystems.

  5. Biological Production of Methane from Lunar Mission Solid Waste: An Initial Feasibility Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strayer, Richard; Garland, Jay; Janine, Captain

    A preliminary assessment was made of the potential for biological production of methane from solid waste generated during an early planetary base mission to the moon. This analysis includes: 1) estimation of the amount of biodegradable solid waste generated, 2) background on the potential biodegradability of plastics given their significance in solid wastes, and 3) calculation of potential methane production from the estimate of biodegradable waste. The completed analysis will also include the feasibility of biological methane production costs associated with the biological processing of the solid waste. NASA workshops and Advanced Life Support documentation have estimated the projected amount of solid wastes generated for specific space missions. From one workshop, waste estimates were made for a 180 day transit mission to Mars. The amount of plastic packaging material was not specified, but our visual examination of trash returned from stocktickerSTS missions indicated a large percentage would be plastic film. This plastic, which is not biodegradable, would amount to 1.526 kgdw crew-1 d-1 or 6.10 kgdw d-1 for a crew of 4. Over a mission of 10 days this would amount to 61 kgdw of plastics and for an 180 day lunar surface habitation it would be nearly 1100 kgdw . Approx. 24 % of this waste estimate would be biodegradable (human fecal waste, food waste, and paper), but if plastic packaging was replaced with biodegradable plastic, then 91% would be biodegradable. Plastics are man-made long chain polymeric molecules, and can be divided into two main groups; thermoplastics and thermoset plastics. Thermoplastics comprise over 90% of total plastic use in the placecountry-regionUnited States and are derived from polymerization of olefins via breakage of the double bond and subsequent formation of additional carbon to carbon bonds. The resulting sole-carbon chain polymers are highly resistant to biodegradation and hydrolytic cleavage. Common thermoplastics include low

  6. Safety Assessment and Biological Effects of a New Cold Processed SilEmulsion for Dermatological Purpose

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Raposo

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available It is of crucial importance to evaluate the safety profile of the ingredients used in dermatological emulsions. A suitable equilibrium between safety and efficacy is a pivotal concern before the marketing of a dermatological product. The aim was to assess the safety and biological effects of a new cold processed silicone-based emulsion (SilEmulsion. The hazard, exposure, and dose-response assessment were used to characterize the risk for each ingredient. EpiSkin assay and human repeat insult patch tests were performed to compare the theoretical safety assessment to in vitro and in vivo data. The efficacy of the SilEmulsion was studied using biophysical measurements in human volunteers during 21 days. According to the safety assessment of the ingredients, 1,5-pentanediol was an ingredient of special concern since its margin of safety was below the threshold of 100 (36.53. EpiSkin assay showed that the tissue viability after the application of the SilEmulsion was 92 ± 6% and, thus considered nonirritant to the skin. The human studies confirmed that the SilEmulsion was not a skin irritant and did not induce any sensitization on the volunteers, being safe for human use. Moreover, biological effects demonstrated that the SilEmulsion increased both the skin hydration and skin surface lipids.

  7. Historical precedence and technical requirements of biological weapons use : a threat assessment.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Estes, Daniel P.; Vogel, Kathleen Margaret; Gaudioso, Jennifer Marie; Hickok, Lauren T.; Jung, Danielle F.; Barnett, Natalie Beth; Frerichs, Rebecca L.; Salerno, Reynolds Mathewson

    2004-05-01

    The threat from biological weapons is assessed through both a comparative historical analysis of the patterns of biological weapons use and an assessment of the technological hurdles to proliferation and use that must be overcome. The history of biological weapons is studied to learn how agents have been acquired and what types of states and substate actors have used agents. Substate actors have generally been more willing than states to use pathogens and toxins and they have focused on those agents that are more readily available. There has been an increasing trend of bioterrorism incidents over the past century, but states and substate actors have struggled with one or more of the necessary technological steps. These steps include acquisition of a suitable agent, production of an appropriate quantity and form, and effective deployment. The technological hurdles associated with the steps present a real barrier to producing a high consequence event. However, the ever increasing technological sophistication of society continually lowers the barriers, resulting in a low but increasing probability of a high consequence bioterrorism event.

  8. Biofabrication of manganese nanoparticle using aegle marmelos fruit extract and assessment of its biological activities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keerthana Sivanesan

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Objective(s: The present investigation dealt with the biological production of manganese nanoparticles using Aegle marmelos fruit and assessing the antioxidant and antibiofilm activities. Methods: The nanoparticles were produced using the fruit extract of Aegle marmelos as the reducing agent with potassium permanganate as the substrate. Manganese nanoparticles synthesized were characterized by UV-Vis spectroscopy, Scanning Electron Microscopy, FT-IR spectroscopy and X Ray Diffractometry. Antibiofilm and antioxidant activities of the nanoparticles were assessed by DPPH and crystal violet staining methods respectively and were statistically analysed using SPSS software. Results: The characterisation study reported that the average crystallite size of the formed nanoparticle was 23.7nm. The results indicated that biofilms of gram positive and gram negative bacteria were inhibited at 80 and 100 μg of nanoparticles/ml respectively showing more activity against gram positive bacterial biofilms. The highest activity was observed against E.coli as 1.217±0.43 at 80 μg/ml and B.subtilis as 1.705±0.37 at 100 μg/ml. Maximum activity of nanoparticle against reactive oxygen species was found to be at a concentration of 5mg/ml as 27.31±0.03%. Conclusions: This study demonstrated that the biologically synthesized manganese nanoparticles are environment-friendly with its potential applications against pathogens and could be implied for various other biological purposes.

  9. Bibliographical database of radiation biological dosimetry and risk assessment: Part 1, through June 1988

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Straume, T.; Ricker, Y.; Thut, M.

    1988-08-29

    This database was constructed to support research in radiation biological dosimetry and risk assessment. Relevant publications were identified through detailed searches of national and international electronic databases and through our personal knowledge of the subject. Publications were numbered and key worded, and referenced in an electronic data-retrieval system that permits quick access through computerized searches on publication number, authors, key words, title, year, and journal name. Photocopies of all publications contained in the database are maintained in a file that is numerically arranged by citation number. This report of the database is provided as a useful reference and overview. It should be emphasized that the database will grow as new citations are added to it. With that in mind, we arranged this report in order of ascending citation number so that follow-up reports will simply extend this document. The database cite 1212 publications. Publications are from 119 different scientific journals, 27 of these journals are cited at least 5 times. It also contains reference to 42 books and published symposia, and 129 reports. Information relevant to radiation biological dosimetry and risk assessment is widely distributed among the scientific literature, although a few journals clearly dominate. The four journals publishing the largest number of relevant papers are Health Physics, Mutation Research, Radiation Research, and International Journal of Radiation Biology. Publications in Health Physics make up almost 10% of the current database.

  10. Understanding the Reading Attributes and Their Cognitive Relationships on a High-Stakes Biology Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rawlusyk, Kevin James

    Test items used to assess learners' knowledge on high-stakes science examinations contain contextualized questions that unintentionally assess reading skill along with conceptual knowledge. Therefore, students who are not proficient readers are unable to comprehend the text within the test item to demonstrate effectively their level of science knowledge. The purpose of this quantitative study was to understand what reading attributes were required to successfully answer the Biology 30 Diploma Exam. Furthermore, the research sought to understand the cognitive relationships among the reading attributes through quantitative analysis structured by the Attribute Hierarchy Model (AHM). The research consisted of two phases: (1) Cognitive development, where the cognitive attributes of the Biology 30 Exam were specified and hierarchy structures were developed; and (2) Psychometric analysis, that statistically tested the attribute hierarchy using the Hierarchy Consistency Index (HCI), and calculate attribute probabilities. Phase one of the research used January 2011, Biology 30 Diploma Exam, while phase two accessed archival data for the 9985 examinees who took the assessment on January 24th, 2011. Phase one identified ten specific reading attributes, of which five were identified as unique subsets of vocabulary, two were identified as reading visual representations, and three corresponded to general reading skills. Four hierarchical cognitive model were proposed then analyzed using the HCI as a mechanism to explain the relationship among the attributes. Model A had the highest HCI value (0.337), indicating an overall poor data fit, yet for the top achieving examinees the model had an excellent model fit with an HCI value of 0.888, and for examinees that scored over 60% there was a moderate model fit (HCI = 0.592). Linear regressions of the attribute probability estimates suggest that there is a cognitive relationship among six of the ten reading attributes (R2 = 0.958 and 0

  11. Fate and significance of phthalates and bisphenol A in liquid by-products generated during municipal solid waste mechanical-biological pre-treatment and disposal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fudala-Ksiazek, Sylwia; Pierpaoli, Mattia; Luczkiewicz, Aneta

    2017-06-01

    Samples of liquid by-products generated by municipal solid waste plants (MSWPs) were tested for the presence of phthalates (PAEs) and bisphenol A (BPA). The results indicated that the wastewater generated during mechanical (sorting unit - SU) and biological (composting unit - CU) pre-treatment (MBT) of residual (mixed) solid waste is a significant source of these compounds. The concentrations of PAEs (up to 32222μg/L) and BPA (up to 1795μg/L) in the SU and CU wastewaters were generally higher than those in landfill leachates tested in this and other studies. To date, MBT wastewaters have been poorly studied and are usually overlooked. However, in this study, despite their relatively small quantities, they constituted an important load of ammonia (up to 1610mg/L) and organic matter (COD up to 52980mg/L). Thus, to apply an effective treatment, it is critical to monitor the current quality and quantity of all liquid by-products generated at MSWPs and to prioritize the (micro)pollutants of concern. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Lake Whitney Comprehensive Water Quality Assessment, Phase 1B- Physical and Biological Assessment (USDOE)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Doyle, Robert D; Byars, Bruce W

    2009-11-24

    assessment of knowledge of watershed and water quality related issues by local residents and stakeholders of Lake Whitney and design an intervention educational program to address any deficiencies discovered. Phase IA was funded primarily from EPA Cooperative Agreement X7-9769 8901-0. Phase IC (USEPA, QAPP Study Element 5) of this research focused on the ambient toxicity of the reservoir with respect to periodic blooms of golden algae. Phase IC was funded primarily from Cooperative Agreement EM-96638001. Phase 1B (USDOE, Study Elements 6-11) complemented work being done via EPA funding on study elements 1-5 and added five new study elements: 6) Salinity Transport in the Brazos Watershed to Lake Whitney; 7) Bacterial Assessment; 8) Organic Contaminant Analysis on Lake Whitney; 9) Plankton Photosynthesis; 10) Lake Whitney Resident Knowledge Assessment; and 11) Engineering Scoping Perspective: Recommendations for Use.

  13. The normal limits, subclinical significance, related metabolic derangements and distinct biological effects of body site-specific adiposity in relatively healthy population.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chun-Ho Yun

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The accumulation of visceral adipose tissue that occurs with normal aging is associated with increased cardiovascular risks. However, the clinical significance, biological effects, and related cardiometabolic derangements of body-site specific adiposity in a relatively healthy population have not been well characterized. MATERIALS AND METHODS: In this cross-sectional study, we consecutively enrolled 608 asymptomatic subjects (mean age: 47.3 years, 27% female from 2050 subjects undergoing an annual health survey in Taiwan. We measured pericardial (PCF and thoracic peri-aortic (TAT adipose tissue volumes by 16-slice multi-detector computed tomography (MDCT (Aquarius 3D Workstation, TeraRecon, San Mateo, CA, USA and related these to clinical characteristics, body fat composition (Tanita 305 Corporation, Tokyo, Japan, coronary calcium score (CCS, serum insulin, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (Hs-CRP level and circulating leukocytes count. Metabolic risk was scored by Adult Treatment Panel III guidelines. RESULTS: TAT, PCF, and total body fat composition all increased with aging and higher metabolic scores (all p<0.05. Only TAT, however, was associated with higher circulating leukocyte counts (ß-coef.:0.24, p<0.05, serum insulin (ß-coef.:0.17, p<0.05 and high sensitivity C-reactive protein (ß-coef.:0.24, p<0.05. These relationships persisted after adjustment in multivariable models (all p<0.05. A TAT volume of 8.29 ml yielded the largest area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUROC: 0.79, 95%CI: 0.74-0.83 to identify metabolic syndrome. TAT but not PCF correlated with higher coronary calcium score after adjustment for clinical variables (all p<0.05. CONCLUSION: In our study, we observe that age-related body-site specific accumulation of adipose tissue may have distinct biological effects. Compared to other adiposity measures, peri-aortic adiposity is more tightly associated with cardiometabolic risk profiles and

  14. Biological assessment to support ecological recovery of a degraded headwater system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longing, Scott D; Haggard, Brian E

    2010-09-01

    An assessment of the benthic macroinvertebrate community was conducted to characterize the ecological recovery of a channelized main stem and two small tributaries at the Watershed Research and Education Center (WREC, Arkansas, USA). Three other headwater streams in the same basin were also sampled as controls and for biological reference information. A principal components analysis produced stream groupings along an overall gradient of physical habitat integrity, with degraded reaches showing lower RBP habitat scores, reduced flow velocities, smaller substrate sizes, greater conductivity, and higher percentages of sand and silt substrate. The benthic macroinvertebrate assemblage at WREC was dominated by fast-reproducing dipteran larvae (midge and mosquito larvae) and physid snails, which comprised 71.3% of the total macroinvertebrate abundance over three sampling periods. Several macroinvertebrate assemblage metrics should provide effective targets for monitoring overall improvements in the invertebrate assemblage including recovery towards a more complex food web (e.g., total number of taxa, number of EPT taxa, percent 2 dominant taxa). However, current habitat conditions and the extent of existing degradation, system isolation and surrounding urban or agricultural land-uses might affect the level of positive change to the system. We therefore suggest a preliminary restoration strategy involving the addition of pool habitats in the system. At one pool we collected a total of 29 taxa (dominated by water beetle predators), which was 59% of total number of taxa collected at WREC. Maintaining water-retentive pools to collect flows and maintain water permanence focuses on enhancing known biology and habitat, thus reducing the effects of abiotic filters on macroinvertebrate assemblage recovery. Furthermore, biological assessment prior to restoration supports a strategy primarily focused on improving the existing macroinvertebrate community in the current context of the

  15. An implementation plan for using biological indicators to improve assessment of water quality in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boonsoong, Boonsatien; Sangpradub, Narumon; Barbour, Michael T; Simachaya, Wijarn

    2010-06-01

    Most national standards for assessment of water quality include physical and chemical indicators relevant to specific pollutants and stressors. However, biological communities reflect not only current conditions of aquatic resources but also change in conditions over time and impacts from multiple stressors. Assessing the health of the aquatic community (that is, bioassessments) has proven to be critical in protecting and maintaining healthy surface waters under the mandates of regulatory frameworks, such as the Clean Water Act in the USA and the Water Framework Directive of the European Union. Whereas, in Thailand water standards, bioassessment is lacking in favor of chemical criteria, only coliform bacteria measurement can be considered a surrogate biological parameter. Our paper argues that incorporating bioassessment will improve water resource condition evaluations and recommends the use of the benthic macroinvertebrate assemblage as a bioassessment framework in Thailand. We discuss the implementation of a bioassessment program that consists of two major components, (a) a scientifically valid technical approach and (b) consideration of technical resources for a cost-effective program. The technical design comprises (1) classification of streams into similar groupings, (2) design of a biological survey, (3) a well-documented sampling protocol, (4) calibration of biological metrics for data analysis, (5) development of criteria for determination of ecological condition, and (6) communication of the results to citizens and policymakers. A cost-effective way to develop a bioassessment program that will improve Thailand's ability to measure water quality and to make good decisions to attain healthy quality status is to establish partnerships by coordinating efforts and sharing data and technology with adjacent regional environmental offices or provinces. This collaboration would be fostered through a long-term national water resources management strategy and clear

  16. Prognostic Significance of Remote Myocardium Alterations Assessed by Quantitative Noncontrast T1 Mapping in ST-Segment Elevation Myocardial Infarction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reinstadler, Sebastian J; Stiermaier, Thomas; Liebetrau, Johanna; Fuernau, Georg; Eitel, Charlotte; de Waha, Suzanne; Desch, Steffen; Reil, Jan-Christian; Pöss, Janine; Metzler, Bernhard; Lücke, Christian; Gutberlet, Matthias; Schuler, Gerhard; Thiele, Holger; Eitel, Ingo

    2017-06-09

    This study assessed the prognostic significance of remote zone native T1 alterations for the prediction of clinical events in a population with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) who were treated by primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PPCI) and compared it with conventional markers of infarct severity. The exact role and incremental prognostic relevance of remote myocardium native T1 mapping alterations assessed by cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) after STEMI remains unclear. We included 255 consecutive patients with STEMI who were reperfused within 12 h after symptom onset. CMR core laboratory analysis was performed to assess left ventricular (LV) function, standard infarct characteristics, and native T1 values of the remote, noninfarcted myocardium. The primary endpoint was a composite of death, reinfarction, and new congestive heart failure within 6 months (major adverse cardiac events [MACE]). Patients with increased remote zone native T1 values (>1,129 ms) had significantly larger infarcts (p = 0.012), less myocardial salvage (p = 0.002), and more pronounced LV dysfunction (p = 0.011). In multivariable analysis, remote zone native T1 was independently associated with MACE after adjusting for clinical risk factors (p = 0.001) or other CMR variables (p = 0.007). In C-statistics, native T1 of remote myocardium provided incremental prognostic information beyond clinical risk factors, LV ejection fraction, and other markers of infarct severity (all p infarct size, and myocardial salvage index) led to net reclassification improvement of 0.82 (95% confidence interval: 0.46 to 1.17; p Myocardial Damage in STEMI [LIPSIA-COND]; NCT02158468). Copyright © 2017 American College of Cardiology Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Oil refinery experience with the assessment of refinery effluents and receiving waters using biologically based methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comber, Michael H I; Girling, Andrew; den Haan, Klaas H; Whale, Graham

    2015-10-01

    The trend in discharges of petroleum-related substances from refineries in Europe shows a consistent picture of declining emissions, since first measured in 1969. This decline coincides with enhanced internal capture or recycling procedures and increasing use of physical and biological treatments. At the same time, and partly in response to legislative drivers, there has been an increase in the use of chronic (long-term) toxicity tests and alternative methods for assessing the quality of effluent discharges. The Whole Effluent Assessment (WEA) approach has also driven the increased conduct of studies addressing the fate of effluent constituents. Such studies have included the use of biodegradation and solid-phase micro-extraction-biomimetic extraction (SPME-BE) methods to address potentially bioaccumulative substances (PBS). In this way, it is then possible to address the persistence and toxicity of these PBS constituents of an effluent. The data collected in various case studies highlights the advantages and pitfalls of using biologically-based methods to assess the potential for refinery effluents to cause environmental impacts. © 2015 SETAC.

  18. Traits related to biological invasion: A note on the applicability of risk assessment tools across taxa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lisa M. Emiljanowicz

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Biological invasions are occurring frequently and with great impact to agricultural production and other ecosystem services. In response to this, the Australian Weed Risk Assessment (AWRA was created to assess the potential ‘weediness’ of plants based on answers to questions related to biogeography, undesirable attributes, and biology or ecology. This basic model has been expanded and adapted for use on other taxa, often without adequate validation. Since invasive insect crop pests are a major economic cost to agricultural production, there is interest in using an expanded model for insects. Here, we review traits related to invasiveness of insects based on a systematic review of the literature. We then compare the identified invasive traits of insects with those identified for plants in the AWRA. Using insects as a case study, we illustrate that although there is some overlap in invasive traits, there are many unique traits related to invasion for both insects and plants. For insects, these traits relate largely to social behaviour. This lack of congruence may also be the case for other taxa. To increase predictive power, a taxon-specific risk assessment tool and deliberate verification are required.

  19. [Single-donor (apheresis) platelets and pooled whole-blood-derived platelets--significance and assessment of both blood products].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hitzler, Walter E

    2014-01-01

    The transfusion efficacy of ATK, which contain fully functional platelets, is beyond all doubt. The equivalence of ATK and PTK has been subject of many studies. Some of those studies show the superiority of ATK's, while others do not, but there have been no studies that demonstrated a superiority of PTK's. The superiority of platelets stored in plasma and in third generation additive solution was demonstrated in clinical studies; therefore, it cannot be said that all the platelet concentrates on the German market are equivalent in efficacy. Of decisive importance, above all, is the risk of transfusion-transmitted infections with known pathogens, or those not yet discovered. This risk is different for ATK compared to PTK. Taking this difference in risk and the difference in donor exposure of transfused patients into account, it can definitely be said that ATK and PTK are not equivalent. In 2012, the Robert-Koch-Institute (RKI) published a mathematical risk model for different platelet concentrates and assessed the risk of transmitting known pathogens such as HIV, HCV, and HBV. The risk was higher for PTK compared to ATK. The relative risks for PTK derived from 4BCs were 2.2 (95%--CI: 2.1-2.4) for HIV, 2.7 (95%--CI: 2.5-3.0) for HCV, and 2.2 (95%--CI: 2.8-3.7) for HBV. At the present time, these are the relative risks of transfusion-transmitted infections with the traditional pathogens for PTK compared to ATK. In addition to the RKI assessed risks, there is the theoretical risk of a new, unknown agent, transmitted through blood exposure. The magnitude of this risk is hardly predictable for PTK. The experience gathered so far, especially in the last three decades, with the emergence of HIV, prions, and West Nil virus, shows that the biological nature of a next transfusion-transmissible infectious agent cannot be predictable. This agent, if we think at a conventional sexually transmissible agent with nucleic acid and long latent period, would spread first in areas with

  20. Assessing driving capability: a method for individual testing: the significance of paraparesis inferior studied in a controlled experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lings, S

    1991-04-01

    The part played in traffic safety by driver illness or disability is uncertain or unknown. So also are the specific identity and degree of the disorders which necessitate the use of driving aids or which completely incapacitate a person from driving. Despite the gravity of the problems, the question of fitness to hold a driving licence is decided throughout the world mainly on the basis of subjective assessment. Controlled experiments exploring the significance of disorders have only been carried out on a restricted scale. In this paper a description is given of a mock car, which is used both for research and individual assessment. It enables the measurement of strength application, steering wheel turn speed, simple reaction times when operating pedals and steering wheel, erroneous reactions, and choice reaction times. Experiments involving 109 able-bodied and healthy persons showed, as expected, that the muscular strength of men was greater than of women, and that men were significantly quicker at carrying out functions which primarily depend upon speed of movement and of strength. Apart from this, however, there were no significant sex-related differences. Almost all variables showed age dependence, this being most pronounced in the case of men. Thirty-two percent of the test candidates committed errors like braking instead of turning the wheel or turning to the wrong side. Neither the incidence nor the seriousness of errors bore any relation to sex or age. Fifty-two persons suffering from paraparesis inferior were compared with the 109 able-bodied subjects. The degree of paresis co-varied with reaction times, but the degree of spasticity only to a minor extent. The results indicate that at a speed of 80 km/h, 'slight paresis' increases reaction distance by around 2-3 m (15%), and 'moderate paresis' by the region of 50 m.

  1. Integrated SPECT/CT for assessment of haemodynamically significant coronary artery lesions in patients with acute coronary syndrome

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rispler, Shmuel [Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, Department of Cardiology, Rambam Health Care Campus and the B. Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, Haifa (Israel); Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Rambam Health Care Campus and the B. Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, Haifa (Israel); Aronson, Doron; Roguin, Ariel; Beyar, Rafael [Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, Department of Cardiology, Rambam Health Care Campus and the B. Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, Haifa (Israel); Abadi, Sobhi; Engel, Ahuva [Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, Department of Medical Imaging, Rambam Health Care Campus and the B. Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, Haifa (Israel); Israel, Ora; Keidar, Zohar [Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Rambam Health Care Campus and the B. Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, Haifa (Israel)

    2011-10-15

    Early risk stratification in patients with non-ST elevation acute coronary syndromes (NSTE-ACS) is important since the benefit from more aggressive and costly treatment strategies is proportional to the risk of adverse clinical events. In the present study we assessed whether hybrid single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT)/coronary computed tomography angiography (CCTA) technology could be an appropriate tool in stratifying patients with NSTE-ACS. SPECT/CCTA was performed in 90 consecutive patients with NSTE-ACS. The Thrombolysis in Myocardial Infarction risk score (TIMI-RS) was used to classify patients as low- or high-risk. Imaging was performed using SPECT/CCTA to identify haemodynamically significant lesions defined as >50% stenosis on CCTA with a reversible perfusion defect on SPECT in the corresponding territory. CCTA demonstrated at least one lesion with >50% stenosis in 35 of 40 high-risk patients (87%) as compared to 14 of 50 low-risk patients (35%; TIMI-RS <3; p <0.0001). Of the 40 high-risk and 50 (16%) low-risk TIMI-RS patients, 16 (40%) and 8 (16%), respectively, had haemodynamically significant lesions (p = 0.01). Patients defined as high-risk by a high TIMI-RS, a positive CCTA scan or both (n = 45) resulted in a sensitivity of 95%, specificity of 49%, PPV of 35% and NPV of 97% for having haemodynamically significant coronary lesions. Those with normal perfusion were spared revascularization procedures, regardless of their TIMI-RS. Noninvasive assessment of coronary artery disease by SPECT/CCTA may play an important role in risk stratification of patients with NSTE-ACS by better identifying the subgroup requiring intervention. (orig.)

  2. The significance of ecology in the development of Verticillium chlamydosporium as a biological control agent against root-knot nematodes (Meloidogyne spp.)

    OpenAIRE

    Leij, de, F.A.A.M.

    1992-01-01

    A thorough understanding of the interactions which occur between nematode parasites and nematode pests and the influence of biotic and abiotic factors on these interactions, is essential in the development of biological control agents for nematodes. The aim of this study was to develop a particular isolate of the nematophagous fungus Verticillium chlamydosporium as a biological control agent for root-knot nematodes. The work has gained insight into some of the ke...

  3. Reactive oxygen species measurement in neat and washed semen: comparative analysis and its significance in male infertility assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venkatesh, S; Shamsi, M B; Dudeja, S; Kumar, R; Dada, Rima

    2011-01-01

    Oxidative stress (OS) is a major concern in idiopathic male infertility as elevated levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the semen is believed to adversely affect sperm functional competence and damage both nuclear and mitochondrial DNA. Therefore, identifying infertile men with seminal OS may be used as a valuable tool in the assessment of male infertility. Semen is a complex mixture of spermatozoa and seminal plasma which is rich in enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidants. However, the measurement of ROS in the semen and its application in male infertility assessment is poorly understood. The aim of the present study was to compare the significance of ROS measurement in washed and neat semen. The study included 65 infertile men with abnormal semen (SA) parameters, 17 infertile men with normal semen (NS) parameters and 43 fertile controls (FC). ROS levels in both washed and neat semen were measured by luminol-dependent chemiluminescence assay and the values were expressed as 10(4 )RLU per minute per 20 million spermatozoa. The levels of ROS in both washed and neat semen were found to be significantly higher (P neat semen 0.03, washed semen 0.24), whereas infertile men with SA group had the highest median ROS level (neat semen 3.44, washed semen 27.42). In all subjects, ROS levels were found to be higher in washed semen than in neat semen. A strong positive correlation (r = 0.847, P neat and washed semen was observed. Measurement of ROS in neat semen reflects the original oxidative status in the actual sperm microenvironment and is an easy, simple, inexpensive and rapid method compared with ROS measurement from washed semen. ROS measurement in washed semen is done to assess ROS levels following sperm processing as in cases opting for assisted conception. As both ROS values in neat and washed show a positive correlation, neat semen may be used as a valuable tool for identifying infertile men with seminal OS. ROS levels are elevated in nearly 70% men with

  4. Modulation of ethylene responses by OsRTH1 overexpression reveals the biological significance of ethylene in rice seedling growth and development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Wei; Zhou, Xin; Wen, Chi-Kuang

    2012-01-01

    Overexpression of Arabidopsis Reversion-To-ethylene Sensitivity1 (RTE1) results in whole-plant ethylene insensitivity dependent on the ethylene receptor gene Ethylene Response1 (ETR1). However, overexpression of the tomato RTE1 homologue Green Ripe (GR) delays fruit ripening but does not confer whole-plant ethylene insensitivity. It was decided to investigate whether aspects of ethylene-induced growth and development of the monocotyledonous model plant rice could be modulated by rice RTE1 homologues (OsRTH genes). Results from a cross-species complementation test in Arabidopsis showed that OsRTH1 overexpression complemented the rte1-2 loss-of-function mutation and conferred whole-plant ethylene insensitivity in an ETR1-dependent manner. In contrast, OsRTH2 and OsRTH3 overexpression did not complement rte1-2 or confer ethylene insensitivity. In rice, OsRTH1 overexpression substantially prevented ethylene-induced alterations in growth and development, including leaf senescence, seedling leaf elongation and development, coleoptile elongation or curvature, and adventitious root development. Results of subcellular localizations of OsRTHs, each fused with the green fluorescent protein, in onion epidermal cells suggested that the three OsRTHs were predominantly localized to the Golgi. OsRTH1 may be an RTE1 orthologue of rice and modulate rice ethylene responses. The possible roles of auxins and gibberellins in the ethylene-induced alterations in growth were evaluated and the biological significance of ethylene in the early stage of rice seedling growth is discussed. PMID:22451723

  5. Modulation of ethylene responses by OsRTH1 overexpression reveals the biological significance of ethylene in rice seedling growth and development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Wei; Zhou, Xin; Wen, Chi-Kuang

    2012-06-01

    Overexpression of Arabidopsis Reversion-To-ethylene Sensitivity1 (RTE1) results in whole-plant ethylene insensitivity dependent on the ethylene receptor gene Ethylene Response1 (ETR1). However, overexpression of the tomato RTE1 homologue Green Ripe (GR) delays fruit ripening but does not confer whole-plant ethylene insensitivity. It was decided to investigate whether aspects of ethylene-induced growth and development of the monocotyledonous model plant rice could be modulated by rice RTE1 homologues (OsRTH genes). Results from a cross-species complementation test in Arabidopsis showed that OsRTH1 overexpression complemented the rte1-2 loss-of-function mutation and conferred whole-plant ethylene insensitivity in an ETR1-dependent manner. In contrast, OsRTH2 and OsRTH3 overexpression did not complement rte1-2 or confer ethylene insensitivity. In rice, OsRTH1 overexpression substantially prevented ethylene-induced alterations in growth and development, including leaf senescence, seedling leaf elongation and development, coleoptile elongation or curvature, and adventitious root development. Results of subcellular localizations of OsRTHs, each fused with the green fluorescent protein, in onion epidermal cells suggested that the three OsRTHs were predominantly localized to the Golgi. OsRTH1 may be an RTE1 orthologue of rice and modulate rice ethylene responses. The possible roles of auxins and gibberellins in the ethylene-induced alterations in growth were evaluated and the biological significance of ethylene in the early stage of rice seedling growth is discussed.

  6. Clinical and biological significance of isolated Y chromosome loss in myelodysplastic syndromes and chronic myelomonocytic leukemia. A report from the Spanish MDS Group.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nomdedeu, Meritxell; Pereira, Arturo; Calvo, Xavier; Colomer, Joan; Sole, Francesc; Arias, Amparo; Gomez, Candida; Luño, Elisa; Cervera, Jose; Arnan, Montserrat; Pomares, Helena; Ramos, Fernando; Oiartzabal, Itziar; Espinet, Blanca; Pedro, Carme; Arrizabalaga, Beatriz; Blanco, María Laura; Tormo, Mar; Hernandez-Rivas, Jesus Maria; Díez-Campelo, María; Ortega, Margarita; Valcárcel, David; Cedena, Maria-Teresa; Collado, Rosa; Grau, Javier; Granada, Isabel; Sanz, Guillermo; Campo, Elias; Esteve, Jordi; Costa, Dolors

    2017-12-01

    Isolate loss of chromosome Y (-Y) in myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) is associated to a better outcome but it is also well described as an age-related phenomenon. In this study we aimed to analyze the prognostic impact of -Y in the context of the IPSS-R cytogenetic classification, evaluate the clinical significance of the percentage of metaphases with isolated -Y, and test whether finding -Y may predispose to over-diagnose MDS in patients with borderline morphological features. We evaluated 3581 male patients from the Spanish MDS Registry with a diagnosis of MDS or chronic myelomonocytic leukemia (CMML). -Y was identified in 177 patients (4.9%). Compared with the 2246 male patients with normal karyotype, -Y group showed a reduced risk of leukemic transformation that did not translate into a survival advantage. The overall survival and the risk of leukemic transformation were not influenced by the percentage of metaphases with -Y. The -Y group was not enriched in patients with minor morphologic traits of dysplasia, suggesting that the better outcome in the -Y group cannot be explained by enrichment in cases misdiagnosed as MDS. In conclusion, our results support the current recommendation of classifying patients with -Y within the very good risk category of the IPSS-R for MDS and rule out a selection bias as a possible explanation of this better outcome. An analysis of the molecular basis of MDS with isolated -Y would be of interest as it may provide a biological basis of protection against progression to acute leukemia. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. What clinical and laboratory parameters determine significant intra abdominal pathology for patients assessed in hospital with acute abdominal pain?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smithers Troy

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Abdominal pain is a common cause for emergency admission. While some patients have serious abdominal pathology, a significant group of those patients have no specific cause for the pain. This study was conducted to identify those who have non-specific abdominal pain who can be either admitted short term for observation or reassured and discharged for outpatient management. Patients and methods A prospective documentation of clinical and laboratory data was obtained on a consecutive cohort of 286 patients who were admitted to a surgical unit over a nine month period with symptoms of abdominal pain regarded severe enough for full assessment in the casualty department and admission to a surgical ward. The patients were followed until a definite diagnosis was made or the patient's condition and abdominal pain improved and the patient discharged. The hospital where the study took place is a small peripheral general hospital draining a population of 120,000 people in a rural area in New Zealand. Results There were 286 admissions to the emergency department. Logistic regression multivariate statistical analysis showed that guarding raised white cells count, tachycardia and vomiting were the only variables associated with significant pathology. Conclusion Patients with no vomiting, no guarding, who have normal pulse rates and normal white cell counts are unlikely to have significant pathology requiring further active intervention either medical or surgical.

  8. Assessment of compatibility among Armillaria cepistipes, A. sinapina, and North American biological species X and XI, using culture morphology and molecular biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark T. Banik; Harold H. Burdsall

    1998-01-01

    Ten single-spore isolates each of Armillaria sinapina, A. cepistipes, and North American biological species (NABS)X and XI were paired in all combinations. A second set of ten single-spore isolates of each species was likewise paired. Each pairing was duplicated for a total of 3280 pairs. Using the standard morphological criteria (e.g., fluffy, crustose) to assess the...

  9. Analysis and assessment of the detriment in interventional radiology using biological dosimetry methods

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Montoro, A.; Almonacid, M.; Villaescusa, J.I. [Hospital Univ. la Fe de Valen cian, Servicio de Proteccion Radiologica, Valencia (Spain); Barquinero, J.F.; Rodriguez, P. [Universitat Autonom a de Barcelona, Servicio de Dosimetria Biologica, Unidad de Antropologia, Departamento de Biologia Animal, Vegetal y Ecologia., Barcelona (Spain); Barrios, L. [Universidad Autonoma de Barcelona, Dept. de Biologia Celular y Fisiologia. Unidad de Biologia Celular, Barcelona (Spain); Verdu, G.; Ramos, M. [Universidad Politecnica de Valencia, Dept. de Ingenieria Quimica y Nuclear, Valencia, (Spain)

    2006-07-01

    Interventional radiologist and staff members usually are exposed to high levels of scattered radiation. As a result, the exposition to radiation procedures can produce detrimental effects that we would have to know. Effective dose is the quantity that better estimates the radiation risk. For this study we have realized an estimation of the radiological detriment to exposed workers of the Hospital la Fe de Valencia. For it, have been used physical doses registered in detectors T.L.D., and doses estimated by biological dosimetry in lymphocytes of peripheral blood. There has been estimated for every case the probability of effect of skin cancer and of non-solid cancers (leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma), being compared with the baseline probability of natural effect. Biological doses were obtained by extrapolating the yield of dicentrics and translocations to their respective dose -effect curves. The discrepancies observed between physically recorded doses and biological estimated doses indicate that workers did not always wear their dosimeters or the dosimeters were not always in the radiation field. Cytogenetic studies should be extended to more workers to assess the risk derived from their occupational exposure. (authors)

  10. An assessment of biologically-based optimization (BORT) in the IMRT era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peñagarícano, José A; Papanikolaou, Nikos; Wu, Chuan; Yan, Yulong

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of biological-based IMRT (BORT) in treatment planning development; more specifically, to assess the possible advantages of BORT over the classic 3-dimensional conformal radiation therapy (3DRT) and dose-based IMRT based on quantitative and qualitative indices. Three clinical cases are presented to evaluate the differences of BORT, IMRT, and 3DRT. 3DRT, IMRT, and BORT plans were generated for each case using a commercially available treatment planning system (Pinnacle by Philips). The plans were compared by evaluating biological endpoints such as tumor control probability (TCP), normal tissue control probability (NTCP), and uncomplicated tumor control probability (P+), as well as isodose line distribution, dose-volume histograms (DVHs), and dose uniformity. In all cases of this study, BORT yielded improved isodose coverage and P+. Our preliminary results suggest that BORT could play an important role in treatment planning optimization, especially as biological models and predictive assays become more accurate. Further case studies are needed to establish a definitive role for this type of optimization.

  11. Radiological and Biological Assessment of Immediately Restored Anterior Maxillary Implants Combined with GBR and Free Connective Tissue Graft.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolerman, Roni; Nissan, Joseph; Rahmanov, Arkadi; Zenziper, Eran; Slutzkey, Shimshon; Tal, Haim

    2016-12-01

    Radiologic and biologic assessment of immediately restored Implants combined with guided bone regeneration (GBR) and free connective tissue graft. 1-4 year retrospective study involving 34 patients treated with maxillary immediately restored anterior single-implants. Soft tissue dimensions, radiographic bone loss, and biological and prosthetic complications were assessed. During the mean follow up period of 29 months the study group presented a mean mesial bone loss of 1.10 ± 0.39 mm (range: 0.5-2.4 mm), and mean distal bone loss of 1.19 ± 0.41 mm (range: 0.4-2.1 mm). Mean periimplant probing depth of 3.49 mm (SD ± 1.06) and 2.35 (SD ± 0.52) for the contralateral tooth (highly significant p connective tissue graft according to the concept of immediate implant placement, and non-functional restoration is an accepted treatment modality achieving favorable peri-implant soft tissue condition. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Assessment of the biological variation of plasma tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases-1

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frederiksen, Camilla; Lomholt, A F; Lottenburger, T

    2008-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases-1 (TIMP-1) measurements in plasma may be useful for the early detection and prognosis of colorectal cancer (CRC). Data on analytical performance and normal intra- and interindividual biological variation are required in order to interpret...... the utility of TIMP-1 in CRC. The aim of this study was to establish the biological and analytical variation of plasma TIMP-1 in volunteers. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Three separate studies were undertaken. 1: Plasma was collected from 23 volunteers 6 times within a 3-week period, first in September 2004 (round.......4%, and the intraclass correlation was 46.2%. Comparison between the 3 rounds and time of collection showed that TIMP-1 values decreased by 11% after storage for more than 16 months (p=0.0002). A systematic circadian variation in plasma TIMP-1 levels was not observed (p=0.17). No significant variation of plasma TIMP-1...

  13. The significance of agricultural vs. natural ecosystem pathways in temperate climates in assessments of long-term radiological impact

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    KIos, Richard [Aleksandria Sciences, 37 Coverdale Road, Sheffield S7 2DD (United Kingdom)]. E-mail: ryk@blueyonder.co.uk; Albrecht, Achim [Andra, 1-7 rue Jean Monnet, F-92298 Chatenay-Malabry (France)

    2005-07-01

    Recent developments in performance assessment biosphere models have begun to emphasise the importance of natural accumulation pathways. In contrast to the agricultural pathways, the database for natural ecosystem pathways is less well developed, leading to a mismatch in quality of representations of the two types of system. At issue is the lack of reliable soil-plant and animal ingestion transfer factors for key radionuclides in natural ecosystems. The relative importance of the agricultural vs. natural ecosystem pathways is investigated here, in the context of a temperate site in present day, Eastern France. The BIOMASS Candidate Critical Group (CCG) methodology has been applied to map a set of eight candidate critical groups derived from the present-day societal context onto physical locations within a simple model of a river catchment system. The overall assessment model has been implemented using the Aquabios code. Annual individual dose to each of the CCGs has been calculated for each of the key radionuclides ({sup 79}Se, {sup 94}Nb, {sup 99}Tc, {sup 129}I, {sup 135}Cs and {sup 237}Np) released to the valley aquifer and river. In addition to the traditional agricultural pathways, lifestyle groups exploiting natural habitats are explicitly addressed. Results show the susceptibility of different candidate critical groups to different radionuclides. A reference database typical of those employed in long-term performance assessment models is employed. Doses from external exposure ({sup 94}Nb) and dust inhalation ({sup 237}Np) are shown to dominate agricultural food consumption by factors of more than six, but, with the reference data set, foodstuffs obtained from natural ecosystems do not contribute significantly to critical group dose and, at most, show similar exposures to the agricultural pathways. This may lead to the conclusion that natural food can be ruled out of consideration in performance assessment models. However, systematic parametric sensitivity

  14. Validation of a Fecal Glucocorticoid Assay to Assess Adrenocortical Activity in Meerkats Using Physiological and Biological Stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heistermann, Michael; Santema, Peter; Dantzer, Ben; Mausbach, Jelena; Ganswindt, Andre; Manser, Marta B.

    2016-01-01

    In mammals, glucocorticoid (i.e. GC) levels have been associated with specific life-history stages and transitions, reproductive strategies, and a plethora of behaviors. Assessment of adrenocortical activity via measurement of glucocorticoid metabolites in feces (FGCM) has greatly facilitated data collection from wild animals, due to its non-invasive nature, and thus has become an established tool in behavioral ecology and conservation biology. The aim of our study was to validate a fecal glucocorticoid assay for assessing adrenocortical activity in meerkats (Suricata suricatta), by comparing the suitability of three GC enzyme immunoassays (corticosterone, 11β-hydroxyetiocholanolone and 11oxo-etiocholanolone) in detecting FGCM increases in adult males and females following a pharmacological challenge with adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) and biological stimuli. In addition, we investigated the time course characterizing FGCM excretion, the effect of age, sex and time of day on FGCM levels and assessed the potential effects of soil contamination (sand) on FGCM patterns. Our results show that the group specific 11β-hydroxyetiocholanolone assay was most sensitive to FGCM alterations, detecting significant and most distinctive elevations in FGCM levels around 25 h after ACTH administration. We found no age and sex differences in basal FGCM or on peak response levels to ACTH, but a marked diurnal pattern, with FGCM levels being substantially higher in the morning than later during the day. Soil contamination did not significantly affect FGCM patterns. Our results emphasize the importance of conducting assay validations to characterize species-specific endocrine excretion patterns, a crucial step to all animal endocrinology studies using a non-invasive approach. PMID:27077741

  15. Significant and sustaining elevation of blood oxygen induced by Chinese cupping therapy as assessed by near-infrared spectroscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ting; Li, Yaoxian; Lin, Yu; Li, Kai

    2017-01-01

    Cupping therapy has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years to relieve muscle pain/tendency/fatigue and to cure or reduce symbols of other diseases. However, its therapeutic effect is sparsely interpreted in the language of modern physiology. To objectively evaluate its therapeutic effect, we focused on dry cupping treatment and utilized near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) to assess the concentration change in oxy-hemoglobin ([HbO2]), deoxy-hemoglobin ([Hb]), and blood volume in the course of cupping therapy over 13 volunteers on the infraspinatus muscle, where is usually applied for shoulder pains. Both a prominent drop in [Hb] and a significant elevation in [HbO2] in the tissue surrounding the cupping site were observed during both cupping and post-treatment, manifesting the enhancement of oxygen uptake. This resulting promotion indicates potential positive therapeutic effect of cupping therapy in hemodynamics for facilitating muscular functions.

  16. Significant and sustaining elevation of blood oxygen induced by Chinese cupping therapy as assessed by near-infrared spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ting; Li, Yaoxian; Lin, Yu; Li, Kai

    2016-01-01

    Cupping therapy has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years to relieve muscle pain/tendency/fatigue and to cure or reduce symbols of other diseases. However, its therapeutic effect is sparsely interpreted in the language of modern physiology. To objectively evaluate its therapeutic effect, we focused on dry cupping treatment and utilized near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) to assess the concentration change in oxy-hemoglobin ([HbO2]), deoxy-hemoglobin ([Hb]), and blood volume in the course of cupping therapy over 13 volunteers on the infraspinatus muscle, where is usually applied for shoulder pains. Both a prominent drop in [Hb] and a significant elevation in [HbO2] in the tissue surrounding the cupping site were observed during both cupping and post-treatment, manifesting the enhancement of oxygen uptake. This resulting promotion indicates potential positive therapeutic effect of cupping therapy in hemodynamics for facilitating muscular functions. PMID:28101413

  17. Significance of Semiquantitative Assessment of Preformed Donor-Specific Antibody Using Luminex Single Bead Assay in Living Related Liver Transplantation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atsushi Yoshizawa

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Aim. To analyze the risks of preoperatively produced donor-specific antibody (DSA in liver transplantation. Methods. DSA was assessed using direct complement-dependent cytotoxicity (CDC and anti-human globulin- (AHG- CDC tests, as well as the Luminex Single Antigen assay. Among 616 patients undergoing blood type identical or compatible living donor liver transplantation (LDLT, 21 patients were positive for CDC or AHG-CDC tests, and the preserved serum from 18 patients was examined to determine targeted Class I and II antigens. The relationships between the mean fluorescence intensity (MFI of DSA and the clinical outcomes were analyzed. Results. Patients were divided into 3 groups according to the MFI of anti-Class I DSA: high (11 patients with MFI > 10,000, low (2 patients with MFI 10,000 had a significant negative effect on the clinical outcome of patients with preformed DSA in LDLT.

  18. Single-bilayer graphene oxide sheet tolerance and glutathione redox system significance assessment in faba bean ( Vicia faba L.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anjum, Naser A.; Singh, Neetu; Singh, Manoj K.; Shah, Zahoor A.; Duarte, Armando C.; Pereira, Eduarda; Ahmad, Iqbal

    2013-07-01

    Adsorbents based on single-bilayer graphene oxide sheet (hereafter termed "graphene oxide") are widely used in contaminated environments cleanup which may easily open the avenues for their entry to different environmental compartments, exposure to organisms and their subsequent transfer to human/animal food chain. Considering a common food crop—faba bean ( Vicia faba L.) germinating seedlings as a model plant system, this study assesses the V. faba-tolerance to different concentrations (0, 100, 200, 400, 800, and 1600 mg L-1) of graphene oxide (0.5-5 μm) and evaluates glutathione (γ-glutamyl-cysteinyl-glycine) redox system significance in this context. The results showed significantly increased V. faba sensitivity under three graphene oxide concentrations (in order of impact: 1,600 > 200 > 100 mg graphene oxide L-1), which was accompanied by decreased glutathione redox (reduced glutathione-to-oxidized glutathione) ratio, reduced glutathione pool, as well as significant and equally elevated activities of glutathione-regenerating (glutathione reductase) and glutathione-metabolizing (glutathione peroxidase; glutathione sulfo-transferase) enzymes. Contrarily, the two graphene oxide concentrations (in order of impact: 800 > 400 graphene oxide mg L-1) yielded promising results; where, significant improvements in V. faba health status (measured as increased graphene oxide tolerance) were clearly perceptible with increased ratio of the reduced glutathione-to-oxidized glutathione, reduced glutathione pool and glutathione reductase activity but decreased activities of glutathione-metabolizing enzymes. It is inferred that V. faba seedlings-sensitivity and/or tolerance to graphene oxide concentrations depends on both the cellular redox state (reduced glutathione-to-oxidized glutathione ratio) and the reduced glutathione pool which in turn are controlled by a finely tuned modulation of the coordination between glutathione-regenerating and glutathione-metabolizing enzymes.

  19. Assessing Statistically Significant Heavy-Metal Concentrations in Abandoned Mine Areas via Hot Spot Analysis of Portable XRF Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sung-Min; Choi, Yosoon

    2017-06-18

    To develop appropriate measures to prevent soil contamination in abandoned mining areas, an understanding of the spatial variation of the potentially toxic trace elements (PTEs) in the soil is necessary. For the purpose of effective soil sampling, this study uses hot spot analysis, which calculates a z -score based on the Getis-Ord Gi* statistic to identify a statistically significant hot spot sample. To constitute a statistically significant hot spot, a feature with a high value should also be surrounded by other features with high values. Using relatively cost- and time-effective portable X-ray fluorescence (PXRF) analysis, sufficient input data are acquired from the Busan abandoned mine and used for hot spot analysis. To calibrate the PXRF data, which have a relatively low accuracy, the PXRF analysis data are transformed using the inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry (ICP-AES) data. The transformed PXRF data of the Busan abandoned mine are classified into four groups according to their normalized content and z -scores: high content with a high z -score (HH), high content with a low z -score (HL), low content with a high z -score (LH), and low content with a low z -score (LL). The HL and LH cases may be due to measurement errors. Additional or complementary surveys are required for the areas surrounding these suspect samples or for significant hot spot areas. The soil sampling is conducted according to a four-phase procedure in which the hot spot analysis and proposed group classification method are employed to support the development of a sampling plan for the following phase. Overall, 30, 50, 80, and 100 samples are investigated and analyzed in phases 1-4, respectively. The method implemented in this case study may be utilized in the field for the assessment of statistically significant soil contamination and the identification of areas for which an additional survey is required.

  20. Assessing Statistically Significant Heavy-Metal Concentrations in Abandoned Mine Areas via Hot Spot Analysis of Portable XRF Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sung-Min Kim

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available To develop appropriate measures to prevent soil contamination in abandoned mining areas, an understanding of the spatial variation of the potentially toxic trace elements (PTEs in the soil is necessary. For the purpose of effective soil sampling, this study uses hot spot analysis, which calculates a z-score based on the Getis-Ord Gi* statistic to identify a statistically significant hot spot sample. To constitute a statistically significant hot spot, a feature with a high value should also be surrounded by other features with high values. Using relatively cost- and time-effective portable X-ray fluorescence (PXRF analysis, sufficient input data are acquired from the Busan abandoned mine and used for hot spot analysis. To calibrate the PXRF data, which have a relatively low accuracy, the PXRF analysis data are transformed using the inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry (ICP-AES data. The transformed PXRF data of the Busan abandoned mine are classified into four groups according to their normalized content and z-scores: high content with a high z-score (HH, high content with a low z-score (HL, low content with a high z-score (LH, and low content with a low z-score (LL. The HL and LH cases may be due to measurement errors. Additional or complementary surveys are required for the areas surrounding these suspect samples or for significant hot spot areas. The soil sampling is conducted according to a four-phase procedure in which the hot spot analysis and proposed group classification method are employed to support the development of a sampling plan for the following phase. Overall, 30, 50, 80, and 100 samples are investigated and analyzed in phases 1–4, respectively. The method implemented in this case study may be utilized in the field for the assessment of statistically significant soil contamination and the identification of areas for which an additional survey is required.

  1. Implementing the Science Assessment Standards: Developing and validating a set of laboratory assessment tasks in high school biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saha, Gouranga Chandra

    Very often a number of factors, especially time, space and money, deter many science educators from using inquiry-based, hands-on, laboratory practical tasks as alternative assessment instruments in science. A shortage of valid inquiry-based laboratory tasks for high school biology has been cited. Driven by this need, this study addressed the following three research questions: (1) How can laboratory-based performance tasks be designed and developed that are doable by students for whom they are designed/written? (2) Do student responses to the laboratory-based performance tasks validly represent at least some of the intended process skills that new biology learning goals want students to acquire? (3) Are the laboratory-based performance tasks psychometrically consistent as individual tasks and as a set? To answer these questions, three tasks were used from the six biology tasks initially designed and developed by an iterative process of trial testing. Analyses of data from 224 students showed that performance-based laboratory tasks that are doable by all students require careful and iterative process of development. Although the students demonstrated more skill in performing than planning and reasoning, their performances at the item level were very poor for some items. Possible reasons for the poor performances have been discussed and suggestions on how to remediate the deficiencies have been made. Empirical evidences for validity and reliability of the instrument have been presented both from the classical and the modern validity criteria point of view. Limitations of the study have been identified. Finally implications of the study and directions for further research have been discussed.

  2. Insects as test systems for assessing the potential role of microgravity in biological development and evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vernós, I.; Carratalá, M.; González-Jurado, J.; Valverde, J. R.; Calleja, M.; Domingo, A.; Vinós, J.; Cervera, M.; Marco, R.

    Gravity and radiation are undoubtedly the two major environmental factors altered in space. Gravity is a weak force, which creates a permanent potential field acting on the mass of biological systems and their cellular components, strongly reduced in space flights. Developmental systems, particularly at very early stages, provide the larger cellular compartments known, where the effects of alterations in the size of the gravity vector on living organisms can be more effectively tested. The insects, one of the more highly evolved classes of animals in which early development occurs in a syncytial embryo, are systems particularly well suited to test these effects and the specific developmental mechanisms affected. Furthermore, they share some basic features such as small size, short life cycles, relatively high radio-resistance, etc. and show a diversity of developmental strategies and tempos advantageous in experiments of this type in space. Drosophila melanogaster, the current biological paradigm to study development, with so much genetic and evolutionary background available, is clearly the reference organism for these studies. The current evidence on the effects of the physical parameters altered in space flights on insect development indicate a surprising correlation between effects seen on the fast developing and relatively small Drosophila embryo and the more slowly developing and large Carausius morosus system. In relation to the issue of the importance of developmental and environmental constraints in biological evolution, still the missing link in current evolutionary thinking, insects and space facilities for long-term experiments could provide useful experimental settings where to critically assess how development and evolution may be interconnected. Finally, it has to be pointed out that since there are experimental data indicating a possible synergism between microgravity and space radiation, possible effects of space radiation should be taken into

  3. Indoor Air Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Health Modeling and Assessment System

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stenner, Robert D.; Hadley, Donald L.; Armstrong, Peter R.; Buck, John W.; Hoopes, Bonnie L.; Janus, Michael C.

    2001-03-01

    Indoor air quality effects on human health are of increasing concern to public health agencies and building owners. The prevention and treatment of 'sick building' syndrome and the spread of air-borne diseases in hospitals, for example, are well known priorities. However, increasing attention is being directed to the vulnerability of our public buildings/places, public security and national defense facilities to terrorist attack or the accidental release of air-borne biological pathogens, harmful chemicals, or radioactive contaminants. The Indoor Air Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Health Modeling and Assessment System (IA-NBC-HMAS) was developed to serve as a health impact analysis tool for use in addressing these concerns. The overall goal was to develop a user-friendly fully functional prototype Health Modeling and Assessment system, which will operate under the PNNL FRAMES system for ease of use and to maximize its integration with other modeling and assessment capabilities accessible within the FRAMES system (e.g., ambient air fate and transport models, water borne fate and transport models, Physiologically Based Pharmacokinetic models, etc.). The prototype IA-NBC-HMAS is designed to serve as a functional Health Modeling and Assessment system that can be easily tailored to meet specific building analysis needs of a customer. The prototype system was developed and tested using an actual building (i.e., the Churchville Building located at the Aberdeen Proving Ground) and release scenario (i.e., the release and measurement of tracer materials within the building) to ensure realism and practicality in the design and development of the prototype system. A user-friendly "demo" accompanies this report to allow the reader the opportunity for a "hands on" review of the prototype system's capability.

  4. [VOLATILE FATTY ACIDS IN SALIVA--BIOLOGICAL MARKERS FOR ASSESSMENT OF DRINKING WATER POLLUTANTS ON CHILDREN].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akaizina, A E; Akaizin, E S; Starodumov, V L

    2015-01-01

    The use of modern methods of analysis is aimed to the search of ultimately novel biological markers. Volatile fatty acids in saliva were not used previously for the assessment of the effects of contaminating substances in the drinking water on the body of children. The aim of the study is to investigate the informative value of volatile fatty acids in saliva as biological markers of the impact for the assessment of the exposure to contaminating substances in the drinking water on the body of children. Hygienic assessment of drinking water quality was made according to data of the own research of drinking water from centralized supply system of the city of Ivanovo. For the comparison of indices there was investigated the drinking water from wells at the village Podvyaznovsky of the Ivanovo region. In the Ivanovo water from the distributing network of centralized drinking water supply system of the city of Ivanovo, there were identified indices of the permanganate oxidation and the total concentration of residual chlorine exceeding norms, and also chloroform and carbon tetrachloride were in concentrations not exceeding the norms. Studied by us the samples of drinking water from Podvyaznovsky village wells, the water met the standards for all investigated parameters. The was studied the informative value of volatile fatty acids in the saliva of children aged 9-14 years from the city of Ivanovo and the Podvyaznovsky village, Ivanovo region. There was established the fall in acetic, butyric, isovaleric acids and the total amount of volatile fatty acids in the saliva in children of the city of Ivanovo, consuming water treated with chlorine of Ivanovo centralized drinking water supply system. Indices of volatile fatty acids in saliva are informative for the assessment of the impact of organic pollutants, residual chlorine and organic chlorine compounds of drinking water on the body of children.

  5. Challenges of diatom-based biological monitoring and assessment of streams in developing countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bere, Taurai

    2016-03-01

    Stream biomonitoring tools are largely lacking for many developing countries, resulting in adoption of tools developed from other countries/regions. In many instances, however, the applicability of adopted tools to the new system has not been explicitly evaluated. The objective of this study was to test the applicability of foreign diatom-based water quality assessment indices to streams in Zimbabwe, with the view to highlight challenges being faced in diatom-based biological monitoring in this developing country. The study evaluated the relationship between measured water quality variables and diatom index scores and observed some degree of concordance between water quality variables and diatom index scores emphasising the importance of diatom indices in characterisation and monitoring of stream ecological conditions in developing countries. However, ecological requirements of some diatom species need to be clarified and incorporated in a diatom-based water quality assessment protocol unique to these regions. Resources should be channelled towards tackling challenges associated with diatom-based biological monitoring, principally taxonomic studies, training of skilled labour and acquiring and maintaining the necessary infrastructure. Meanwhile, simpler coarse taxonomy-based rapid bioassessment protocol, which is less time and resource consuming and requires less specialised manpower, can be developed for the country.

  6. An overview of methods for assessment of free radical activity in biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, M J

    1999-11-01

    Assays which purport to assess free radical activity in biological systems are multiple. However, despite numerous published descriptions of new methods and modifications of methods to assess free radical activity in biological materials, there is still a lack of reliable techniques for quantification of activity in vivo. Analysis of a number of related indicators and use of a variety of approaches appears the only reliable way to evaluate these processes in vivo. In studies of free radical generation by contracting skeletal muscle we have attempted to use a variety of indicators, including measurement of endogenous antioxidant levels, measurement of indirect indicators of free radical activity (e.g. products of lipid peroxidation, DNA oxidation or protein oxidation) and, where possible, measurement of direct indicators of free radical activity by electron spin resonance techniques. In view of the relative lack of specificity of many available techniques, caution should be exerted in evaluating the numerous examples of isolated single measures of free radical activity which are present in the scientific literature.

  7. An Integrated Workflow To Assess Technical and Biological Variability of Cell Population Frequencies in Human Peripheral Blood by Flow Cytometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burel, Julie G; Qian, Yu; Lindestam Arlehamn, Cecilia; Weiskopf, Daniela; Zapardiel-Gonzalo, Jose; Taplitz, Randy; Gilman, Robert H; Saito, Mayuko; de Silva, Aruna D; Vijayanand, Pandurangan; Scheuermann, Richard H; Sette, Alessandro; Peters, Bjoern

    2017-02-15

    In the context of large-scale human system immunology studies, controlling for technical and biological variability is crucial to ensure that experimental data support research conclusions. In this study, we report on a universal workflow to evaluate both technical and biological variation in multiparameter flow cytometry, applied to the development of a 10-color panel to identify all major cell populations and T cell subsets in cryopreserved PBMC. Replicate runs from a control donation and comparison of different gating strategies assessed the technical variability associated with each cell population and permitted the calculation of a quality control score. Applying our panel to a large collection of PBMC samples, we found that most cell populations showed low intraindividual variability over time. In contrast, certain subpopulations such as CD56 T cells and Temra CD4 T cells were associated with high interindividual variability. Age but not gender had a significant effect on the frequency of several populations, with a drastic decrease in naive T cells observed in older donors. Ethnicity also influenced a significant proportion of immune cell population frequencies, emphasizing the need to account for these covariates in immune profiling studies. We also exemplify the usefulness of our workflow by identifying a novel cell-subset signature of latent tuberculosis infection. Thus, our study provides a universal workflow to establish and evaluate any flow cytometry panel in systems immunology studies. Copyright © 2017 by The American Association of Immunologists, Inc.

  8. Expression and biological-clinical significance of hTR, hTERT and CKS2 in washing fluids of patients with bladder cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Talesa Vincenzo N

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background at present, pathogenesis of bladder cancer (BC has not been fully elucidated. Aim of this study is to investigate the role of human telomerase RNA (hTR, human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT and CDC28 protein kinase regulatory subunit 2 (CKS2 in bladder carcinogenesis and their possible clinical significance; Methods the transcript levels of hTR, hTERT and CKS2 were quantified by Real time reverse transcriptase chain reaction in exfoliated cells from bladder washings of 36 patients with BC and 58 controls. The statistical significance of differences between BC bearing patients and control groups, in the general as well as in the stratified analysis (superficial or invasive BC, was assessed by Student's t test. Non parametric Receiver Operating Characteristics analysis (ROC was performed to ascertain the accuracy of study variables to discriminate between BC and controls. The clinical value of concomitant examination of hTR, hTERT and CKS2 was evaluated by logistic regression analysis; Results a significant decrease in hTR and a significant increase in hTERT or CKS2 gene expression were found between BC bearing patients and controls, as well as in the subgroups analysis. The area under the curve (AUC indicated an average discrimination power for the three genes, both in the general and subgroups analysis, when singularly considered. The ability to significantly discriminate between superficial and invasive BC was observed only for hTR transcript levels. A combined model including hTR and CKS2 was the best one in BC diagnosis; Conclusions our results, obtained from a sample set particularly rich of exfoliated cells, provide further molecular evidence on the involvement of hTR, hTERT and CKS2 gene expression in BC carcinogenesis. In particular, while hTERT and CKS2 gene expression seems to have a major involvement in the early stages of the disease, hTR gene expression, seems to be more involved in progression. In

  9. Improving CCTA-based lesions' hemodynamic significance assessment by accounting for partial volume modeling in automatic coronary lumen segmentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freiman, Moti; Nickisch, Hannes; Prevrhal, Sven; Schmitt, Holger; Vembar, Mani; Maurovich-Horvat, Pál; Donnelly, Patrick; Goshen, Liran

    2017-03-01

    The goal of this study was to assess the potential added benefit of accounting for partial volume effects (PVE) in an automatic coronary lumen segmentation algorithm that is used to determine the hemodynamic significance of a coronary artery stenosis from coronary computed tomography angiography (CCTA). Two sets of data were used in our work: (a) multivendor CCTA datasets of 18 subjects from the MICCAI 2012 challenge with automatically generated centerlines and 3 reference segmentations of 78 coronary segments and (b) additional CCTA datasets of 97 subjects with 132 coronary lesions that had invasive reference standard FFR measurements. We extracted the coronary artery centerlines for the 97 datasets by an automated software program followed by manual correction if required. An automatic machine-learning-based algorithm segmented the coronary tree with and without accounting for the PVE. We obtained CCTA-based FFR measurements using a flow simulation in the coronary trees that were generated by the automatic algorithm with and without accounting for PVE. We assessed the potential added value of PVE integration as a part of the automatic coronary lumen segmentation algorithm by means of segmentation accuracy using the MICCAI 2012 challenge framework and by means of flow simulation overall accuracy, sensitivity, specificity, negative and positive predictive values, and the receiver operated characteristic (ROC) area under the curve. We also evaluated the potential benefit of accounting for PVE in automatic segmentation for flow simulation for lesions that were diagnosed as obstructive based on CCTA which could have indicated a need for an invasive exam and revascularization. Our segmentation algorithm improves the maximal surface distance error by ~39% compared to previously published method on the 18 datasets from the MICCAI 2012 challenge with comparable Dice and mean surface distance. Results with and without accounting for PVE were comparable. In contrast

  10. Interactions of physical, chemical, and biological weather calling for an integrated approach to assessment, forecasting, and communication of air quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Thomas; Kukkonen, Jaakko; Dahl, Aslög; Bossioli, Elissavet; Baklanov, Alexander; Vik, Aasmund Fahre; Agnew, Paul; Karatzas, Kostas D; Sofiev, Mikhail

    2012-12-01

    This article reviews interactions and health impacts of physical, chemical, and biological weather. Interactions and synergistic effects between the three types of weather call for integrated assessment, forecasting, and communication of air quality. Today's air quality legislation falls short of addressing air quality degradation by biological weather, despite increasing evidence for the feasibility of both mitigation and adaptation policy options. In comparison with the existing capabilities for physical and chemical weather, the monitoring of biological weather is lacking stable operational agreements and resources. Furthermore, integrated effects of physical, chemical, and biological weather suggest a critical review of air quality management practices. Additional research is required to improve the coupled modeling of physical, chemical, and biological weather as well as the assessment and communication of integrated air quality. Findings from several recent COST Actions underline the importance of an increased dialog between scientists from the fields of meteorology, air quality, aerobiology, health, and policy makers.

  11. Compression-based classification of biological sequences and structures via the Universal Similarity Metric: experimental assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manzini Giovanni

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Similarity of sequences is a key mathematical notion for Classification and Phylogenetic studies in Biology. It is currently primarily handled using alignments. However, the alignment methods seem inadequate for post-genomic studies since they do not scale well with data set size and they seem to be confined only to genomic and proteomic sequences. Therefore, alignment-free similarity measures are actively pursued. Among those, USM (Universal Similarity Metric has gained prominence. It is based on the deep theory of Kolmogorov Complexity and universality is its most novel striking feature. Since it can only be approximated via data compression, USM is a methodology rather than a formula quantifying the similarity of two strings. Three approximations of USM are available, namely UCD (Universal Compression Dissimilarity, NCD (Normalized Compression Dissimilarity and CD (Compression Dissimilarity. Their applicability and robustness is tested on various data sets yielding a first massive quantitative estimate that the USM methodology and its approximations are of value. Despite the rich theory developed around USM, its experimental assessment has limitations: only a few data compressors have been tested in conjunction with USM and mostly at a qualitative level, no comparison among UCD, NCD and CD is available and no comparison of USM with existing methods, both based on alignments and not, seems to be available. Results We experimentally test the USM methodology by using 25 compressors, all three of its known approximations and six data sets of relevance to Molecular Biology. This offers the first systematic and quantitative experimental assessment of this methodology, that naturally complements the many theoretical and the preliminary experimental results available. Moreover, we compare the USM methodology both with methods based on alignments and not. We may group our experiments into two sets. The first one, performed via ROC

  12. The significance of ecology in the development of Verticillium chlamydosporium as a biological control agent against root-knot nematodes (Meloidogyne spp.)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leij, de F.A.A.M.

    1992-01-01

    A thorough understanding of the interactions which occur between nematode parasites and nematode pests and the influence of biotic and abiotic factors on these interactions, is essential in the development of biological control agents for nematodes. The aim of this study was to develop a

  13. STUDY OF CORRELATION AND SIGNIFICANCE OF BIOCHEMICAL PARAMETERS IN THE ASSESSMENT OF ACTIVE PHASE OF THYROID EYE DISEASE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashok Kumar P

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available AIM Role of Interleukin-6 and HS-CRP Levels in the assessment of active thyroid eye disease. MATERIALS & METHODS A prospective observational study of 30 patients from the age group of 20-60 years with thyroid eye disease done at Regional Institute of Ophthalmology. All patients were subjected to detailed history, ocular examination, systemic examination, biochemical analysis and Imaging. Patients are categorised as mild, moderate and severe active disease based on clinical activity score. For the period of two years, patients are followed at regular periodic intervals according to the severity of disease and results were analysed. RESULTS Out of 30 patients studied, majority of the patients were females (60%, and 70% of the patients had bilateral disease. Among 30 patients, 83.33% in hyperthyroid state, 3.33% in Hypothyroid state, 13.33% in Euthyroid state (Table 3. Smoking being important risk factor in 30% among males. 50% of patients presented with mild disease, 30% with moderate disease, 0% with severe disease. IL-6, HS-CRP levels are increased only in patients with severe active disease (Table 6. Remission attained in all patients when treated earlier with steroids. CONCLUSION Identifying disease activity early and aggressive treatment with systemic steroids in active phase of moderate and severe disease has reduced the morbidity associated with disease. Correlation of IL-6, HS-CRP, TFT levels are significantly increased only in patients with active phase of severe thyroid eye disease but not significantly elevated in active phase of moderate disease. Another pitfall is IL-6 is an expensive ELISA based diagnosis. Thus, IL-6 & HS-CRP cannot be routinely used to screen patients with Thyroid eye disease.

  14. Life Cycle Assessment of mechanical biological pre-treatment of Municipal Solid Waste: a case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beylot, Antoine; Vaxelaire, Stéphane; Zdanevitch, Isabelle; Auvinet, Nicolas; Villeneuve, Jacques

    2015-05-01

    The environmental performance of mechanical biological pre-treatment (MBT) of Municipal Solid Waste is quantified using Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), considering one of the 57 French plants currently in operation as a case study. The inventory is mostly based on plant-specific data, extrapolated from on-site measurements regarding mechanical and biological operations (including anaerobic digestion and composting of digestate). The combined treatment of 46,929 tonnes of residual Municipal Solid Waste and 12,158 tonnes of source-sorted biowaste (as treated in 2010 at the plant) generates 24,550 tonnes CO2-eq as an impact on climate change, 69,943kg SO2-eq on terrestrial acidification and 19,929kg NMVOC-eq on photochemical oxidant formation, in a life-cycle perspective. On the contrary MBT induces environmental benefits in terms of fossil resource depletion, human toxicity (carcinogenic) and ecotoxicity. The results firstly highlight the relatively large contribution of some pollutants, such as CH4, emitted at the plant and yet sometimes neglected in the LCA of waste MBT. Moreover this study identifies 4 plant-specific operation conditions which drive the environmental impact potentials induced by MBT: the conditions of degradation of the fermentable fraction, the collection of gaseous flows emitted from biological operations, the abatement of collected pollutants and NOx emissions from biogas combustion. Finally the results underline the relatively large influence of the operations downstream the plant (in particular residuals incineration) on the environmental performance of waste MBT. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Silver nanoparticles in complex biological media: assessment of colloidal stability and protein corona formation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Argentiere, Simona, E-mail: simona.argentiere@fondazionefilarete.com; Cella, Claudia, E-mail: claudia.cella@unimi.it [Fondazione Filarete (Italy); Cesaria, Maura, E-mail: maura.cesaria@le.infn.it [Università del Salento, Dipartimento di Matematica e Fisica “Ennio De Giorgi” (Italy); Milani, Paolo, E-mail: paolo.milani@mi.infn.it; Lenardi, Cristina, E-mail: cristina.lenardi@mi.infn.it [Università degli Studi di Milano, CIMAINA and Dipartimento di Fisica (Italy)

    2016-08-15

    Engineered silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are among the most used nanomaterials in consumer products, therefore concerns are raised about their potential for adverse effects in humans and environment. Although an increasing number of studies in vitro and in vivo are being reported on the toxicity of AgNPs, most of them suffer from incomplete characterization of AgNPs in the tested biological media. As a consequence, the comparison of toxicological data is troublesome and the toxicity evaluation still remains an open critical issue. The development of a reliable protocol to evaluate interactions of AgNPs with surrounding proteins as well as to assess their colloidal stability is therefore required. In this regard, it is of importance not only to use multiple, easy-to-access and simple techniques but also to understand limitations of each characterization methods. In this work, the morphological and structural behaviour of AgNPs has been studied in two relevant biological media, namely 10 % FBS and MP. Three different techniques (Dynamic Light Scattering, Transmission Electron Microscopy, UV–Vis spectroscopy) were tested for their suitability in detecting AgNPs of three different sizes (10, 40 and 100 nm) coated with either citrate or polyvinylpyrrolidone. Results showed that UV–Vis spectroscopy is the most versatile and informative technique to gain information about interaction between AgNPs and surrounding proteins and to determine their colloidal stability in the tested biological media. These findings are expected to provide useful insights in characterizing AgNPs before performing any further in vitro/in vivo experiment.

  16. Silver nanoparticles in complex biological media: assessment of colloidal stability and protein corona formation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Argentiere, Simona; Cella, Claudia; Cesaria, Maura; Milani, Paolo; Lenardi, Cristina

    2016-08-01

    Engineered silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are among the most used nanomaterials in consumer products, therefore concerns are raised about their potential for adverse effects in humans and environment. Although an increasing number of studies in vitro and in vivo are being reported on the toxicity of AgNPs, most of them suffer from incomplete characterization of AgNPs in the tested biological media. As a consequence, the comparison of toxicological data is troublesome and the toxicity evaluation still remains an open critical issue. The development of a reliable protocol to evaluate interactions of AgNPs with surrounding proteins as well as to assess their colloidal stability is therefore required. In this regard, it is of importance not only to use multiple, easy-to-access and simple techniques but also to understand limitations of each characterization methods. In this work, the morphological and structural behaviour of AgNPs has been studied in two relevant biological media, namely 10 % FBS and MP. Three different techniques (Dynamic Light Scattering, Transmission Electron Microscopy, UV-Vis spectroscopy) were tested for their suitability in detecting AgNPs of three different sizes (10, 40 and 100 nm) coated with either citrate or polyvinylpyrrolidone. Results showed that UV-Vis spectroscopy is the most versatile and informative technique to gain information about interaction between AgNPs and surrounding proteins and to determine their colloidal stability in the tested biological media. These findings are expected to provide useful insights in characterizing AgNPs before performing any further in vitro/in vivo experiment.

  17. Computational Assessment of Pharmacokinetics and Biological Effects of Some Anabolic and Androgen Steroids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roman, Marin; Roman, Diana Larisa; Ostafe, Vasile; Ciorsac, Alecu; Isvoran, Adriana

    2018-02-05

    The aim of this study is to use computational approaches to predict the ADME-Tox profiles, pharmacokinetics, molecular targets, biological activity spectra and side/toxic effects of 31 anabolic and androgen steroids in humans. The following computational tools are used: (i) FAFDrugs4, SwissADME and admetSARfor obtaining the ADME-Tox profiles and for predicting pharmacokinetics;(ii) SwissTargetPrediction and PASS online for predicting the molecular targets and biological activities; (iii) PASS online, Toxtree, admetSAR and Endocrine Disruptomefor envisaging the specific toxicities; (iv) SwissDock to assess the interactions of investigated steroids with cytochromes involved in drugs metabolism. Investigated steroids usually reveal a high gastrointestinal absorption and a good oral bioavailability, may inhibit someof the human cytochromes involved in the metabolism of xenobiotics (CYP2C9 being the most affected) and reflect a good capacity for skin penetration. There are predicted numerous side effects of investigated steroids in humans: genotoxic carcinogenicity, hepatotoxicity, cardiovascular, hematotoxic and genitourinary effects, dermal irritations, endocrine disruption and reproductive dysfunction. These results are important to be known as an occupational exposure to anabolic and androgenic steroids at workplaces may occur and because there also is a deliberate human exposure to steroids for their performance enhancement and anti-aging properties.

  18. Review of biological factors relevant to import risk assessments for epizootic ulcerative syndrome (Aphanomyces invadans).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oidtmann, B

    2012-02-01

    Epizootic ulcerative syndrome (EUS) is a disease affecting both wild and farmed fish in freshwater and estuarine environments. After it was first described in Japan in 1971, the disease has spread widely across Asia and to some regions of Australia, North America and Africa. In Asia and Africa, the spread of the disease has substantially affected livelihoods of fish farmers and fishermen. No reports are yet published showing the presence of the disease in Europe or South America. Given its epizootic nature and its broad susceptible fish species range, it would appear that the disease has the potential for further spread. This study provides a review of the scientific literature on several biological factors of the pathogen, Aphanomyces invadans, associated with the disease EUS and aspects of the disease that are relevant to undertaking import risk assessments (IRA) covering (i) Life cycle and routes of transmission; (ii) Minimum infectious dose; (iii) Tissue localization and pathogen load; (iv) Predisposing factors for infection and factors influencing expression of disease; (v) Carrier state in fish; (vi) Diagnostic methods; (vii) Survival in the environment; (viii) Permissive temperature range; (ix) Stability of the agent in aquatic animal products; (x) Prevalence of infection; and (xi) Affected life stages. Much of the biological information presented is relevant to a broad range of risk questions. Areas where data are lacking were identified, and the information provided is put into context with other aspects that need to be addressed in an IRA. © 2011 Crown copyright.

  19. Visually assessing the level of development and soil surface stability of cyanobacterially dominated biological soil crusts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, J.; Phillips, S.L.; Witwicki, D.L.; Miller, M.E.

    2008-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are an integral part of dryland ecosystems and often included in long-term ecological monitoring programs. Estimating moss and lichen cover is fairly easy and non-destructive, but documenting cyanobacterial level of development (LOD) is more difficult. It requires sample collection for laboratory analysis, which causes soil surface disturbance. Assessing soil surface stability also requires surface disturbance. Here we present a visual technique to assess cyanobacterial LOD and soil surface stability. We define six development levels of cyanobacterially dominated soils based on soil surface darkness. We sampled chlorophyll a concentrations (the most common way of assessing cyanobacterial biomass), exopolysaccharide concentrations, and soil surface aggregate stability from representative areas of each LOD class. We found that, in the laboratory and field, LOD classes were effective at predicting chlorophyll a soil concentrations (R2=68-81%), exopolysaccharide concentrations (R2=71%), and soil aggregate stability (R2=77%). We took representative photos of these classes to construct a field guide. We then tested the ability of field crews to distinguish these classes and found this technique was highly repeatable among observers. We also discuss how to adjust this index for the different types of BSCs found in various dryland regions.

  20. Potential applications of metagenomics to assess the biological effects of food structure and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santiago-Rodriguez, Tasha M; Cano, Raul; Jiménez-Flores, Rafael

    2016-10-12

    Metagenomics, or the collective study of genomes is an important emerging area in microbiology and related fields, and is increasingly being recognized as a tool to characterize the microbial community structure and function of diverse sample types. Metagenomics compares sequences to existing databases to enable the identification of potential microbial reservoirs and predict specific functions; yet, metagenomics has not been widely applied to understand how changes in the food structure and composition affect microbial communities and their function in the human gut. Studies are needed to understand the digestion of food products, and to measure their effectiveness in preserving a healthy microbiome, as well as intestinal function. We suggest the use of metagenomics with validation techniques such as Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), cloning and functional assays to assess the biological effects of food structure and function.

  1. Characterization of Radiation Fields in Biological Shields of Nuclear Power Plants for Assessing Concrete Degradationa

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Remec, Igor [ORNL; Rosseel, Thomas M [ORNL; Field, Kevin G [ORNL; Le Pape, Yann [ORNL

    2016-01-01

    Life extensions of nuclear power plants to 60 and potentially 80 years of operation have renewed interest in long-term material degradation. One material being considered is concrete, with a particular focus on radiation-induced effects. Based on the projected neutron fluence values (E > 0.1 MeV) in the concrete biological shields of the US pressurized water reactor fleet and the available data on radiation effects on concrete, some decrease in mechanical properties of concrete cannot be ruled out during extended operation beyond 60 years. An expansion of the irradiated concrete database and a reliable determination of relevant neutron fluence energy cutoff value are necessary to ensure reliable risk assessment for extended operation of nuclear power plants.

  2. Assessment of MRI-Based Marker of Dopaminergic Integrity as a Biological Indicator of Gulf War Illness

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-10-01

    AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-14-1-0622 TITLE: Assessment of MRI -Based Marker of Dopaminergic Integrity as a Biological Indicator of Gulf War...COVERED 29 Sep 2014 – 28 Sept 2015 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Illness 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER Assessment of MRI -Based Marker of Dopaminergic Integrity as a

  3. Minimal information: an urgent need to assess the functional reliability of recombinant proteins used in biological experiments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Marco Ario

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Structural characterization of proteins used in biological experiments is largely neglected. In most publications, the information available is totally insufficient to judge the functionality of the proteins used and, therefore, the significance of identified protein-protein interactions (was the interaction specific or due to unspecific binding of misfolded protein regions? or reliability of kinetic and thermodynamic data (how much protein was in its native form?. As a consequence, the results of single experiments might not only become questionable, but the whole reliability of systems biology, built on these fundaments, would be weakened. The introduction of Minimal Information concerning purified proteins to add as metadata to the main body of a manuscript would render straightforward the assessment of their functional and structural qualities and, consequently, of results obtained using these proteins. Furthermore, accepted standards for protein annotation would simplify data comparison and exchange. This article has been envisaged as a proposal for aggregating scientists who share the opinion that the scientific community needs a platform for Minimum Information for Protein Functionality Evaluation (MIPFE.

  4. An exploration of synthetic biology: A preliminary Christian ethical assessment of the advantages and disadvantages of synthetic biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Riaan A.L. Rheeder

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available On 20 May 2010, the Venter Institute in America announced that they have fully synthesised the genome of the organism Mycoplasma mycoides whilst in vitro by using a computer connected to a machine that synthesises genes. Thereafter, the genome was placed back into the casing of another organism (Mycoplasma capricolum and it was reported that the synthesised organism and the genome functioned normally. This synthesised organism was reconstructed to function as a minute little factory with the aim of producing and secreting fuel and medicine − something that is not the natural function of this organism. There are certain potential dangers inherent in this kind of technology. Scientists fear that this technology may contaminate or infect humans, animals or the environment, and that it can as such be extremely harmful, or even lead to the destruction of humans. Other scientists are concerned that terrorists can use this technology to kill innocent citizens. Some ethicists are of the opinion that the consequences of synthetic biology is currently unpredictable and that it is therefore risky. In opposition to the potential dangers, one has to mention that synthetic biology indeed can result in far-reaching positive outcomes such as the manufacturing of biofuel and medication. Most scientists and ethicists are of the opinion that the potential dangers involved in synthetic biology should be evaluated in light of the fact that genetic manipulation has not caused any biological devastation over the last 30 years. From a Christian point of departure, the opinion is currently that synthetic biology is not an irresponsible science and technology.’n Verkenning van sintetiese biologie: ’n Voorlopige Christelik-etiese beoordeling van die voor- en nadele van sintetiese biologie. Op 20 Mei 2010 het die Venter-instituut (in Amerika aangekondig dat hulle die genoom van die organisme Mycoplasma mycoides ten volle in vitro gesintetiseer het (deur middel van

  5. SU-G-TeP3-07: On the Development of Mechano-Biological Assessment of Leukemia Cells Using Optical Tweezers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brost, E; Brooks, J; Piepenburg, J; Watanabe, Y; Hui, S [Therapeutic Radiology and Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN (United States); Chakraborty, S; Das, T [Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems Department of New Materials and Biosystems Department of Mechanical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur (India); Green, A [Department of Physics, University of Saint Thomas, Saint Paul, MN (United States)

    2016-06-15

    Purpose: Patients with BCR-ABL (Ph +ve) acute lymphoblastic leukemia are at very high risk of relapse and mortality. In line with the NIH mission to understand the physical and biological processes, we seek to report mechano-biological method to assessment and distinguish treated/untreated leukemia cells. Methods: BCR-ABL leukemia cell populations and silica microspheres were trapped in a 100x magnification optical trapping system (λ=660 nm, 70 mW). Light refracted through the trapped sample was collected in the back focal plane by a quadrant detector to measure the positions of individual cells. The sample was driven at a known frequency and amplitude with a flexure translation stage, and the target’s response was recorded. The measured response was calibrated using the known driving parameters, and information about cell movements due to mechano-biological effects was extracted. Two leukemia cell populations were tested: a control group and a group treated with 2 Gy. Results: The mechano-biological movements of 10 microspheres, control cells, and treated cells were tracked over a ∼30 minute window at 1 minute intervals. The microsphere population did not see significant change in mechano-biological movements over the testing interval and remained constant. The control cell population saw a two-fold rise in activity that peaked around 1200 seconds, then dropped off sharply. The treated cell population saw a two-fold rise in activity that peaked at 400 seconds, and dropped off slowly. Conclusion: The investigated technique allows for direct measurement the movements of a trapped object due to mechano-biological effects such as thermal and extracellular motion. When testing microspheres, the mechano-biological activity remained constant over time due to the lack of biological factors. In both the control and treated cell populations, the mechano-biological activity was increased, possibly due to mitochondrial activation. This extra activity decreased over time

  6. Problem-solving skills in high school biology: The effectiveness of the IMMEX problem-solving assessment software

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palacio-Cayetano, Joycelin

    "Problem-solving through reflective thinking should be both the method and valuable outcome of science instruction in America's schools" proclaimed John Dewey (Gabel, 1995). If the development of problem-solving is a primary goal of science education, more problem-solving opportunities must be an integral part of K-16 education. To examine the effective use of technology in developing and assessing problem-solving skills, a problem-solving authoring, learning, and assessment software, the UCLA IMMEX Program-Interactive Multimedia Exercises-was investigated. This study was a twenty-week quasi-experimental study that was implemented as a control-group time series design among 120 tenth grade students. Both the experimental group (n = 60) and the control group (n = 60) participated in a problem-based learning curriculum; however, the experimental group received regular intensive experiences with IMMEX problem-solving and the control group did not. Problem-solving pretest and posttest were administered to all students. The instruments used were a 35-item Processes of Biological Inquiry Test and an IMMEX problem-solving assessment test, True Roots. Students who participated in the IMMEX Program achieved significant (p level of analytical and integration skills; and (3) focused search strategy coupled with superior discrimination, analytical, and integration skills. The strategies of students who were successful and unsuccessful solving IMMEX problems were consistent with those of expert and novice problem solvers identified in the literature on problem-solving.

  7. Assessing Assessment: How Use of the Concept Inventory of Natural Selection Influences the Instructional Practices of an Experienced Biology Professor and Supplemental Instruction Leader

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanmali, Binaben H.

    2012-01-01

    Assessment has garnered increased interest in recent years. It is seen as critical to enhancing student learning and understanding. Formative assessment tools such as concept inventories could be valuable in moving toward such goals. Concept inventories, a recent addition to biology education, hold much promise for helping faculty to understand…

  8. A microbiology-based multi-parametric approach towards assessing biological stability in drinking water distribution networks

    KAUST Repository

    Lautenschläger, Karin

    2013-06-01

    Biological stability of drinking water implies that the concentration of bacterial cells and composition of the microbial community should not change during distribution. In this study, we used a multi-parametric approach that encompasses different aspects of microbial water quality including microbial growth potential, microbial abundance, and microbial community composition, to monitor biological stability in drinking water of the non-chlorinated distribution system of Zürich. Drinking water was collected directly after treatment from the reservoir and in the network at several locations with varied average hydraulic retention times (6-52h) over a period of four months, with a single repetition two years later. Total cell concentrations (TCC) measured with flow cytometry remained remarkably stable at 9.5 (±0.6)×104cells/ml from water in the reservoir throughout most of the distribution network, and during the whole time period. Conventional microbial methods like heterotrophic plate counts, the concentration of adenosine tri-phosphate, total organic carbon and assimilable organic carbon remained also constant. Samples taken two years apart showed more than 80% similarity for the microbial communities analysed with denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and 454 pyrosequencing. Only the two sampling locations with the longest water retention times were the exceptions and, sofar for unknown reasons, recorded a slight but significantly higher TCC (1.3(±0.1)×105cells/ml) compared to the other locations. This small change in microbial abundance detected by flow cytometry was also clearly observed in a shift in the microbial community profiles to a higher abundance of members from the Comamonadaceae (60% vs. 2% at other locations). Conventional microbial detection methods were not able to detect changes as observed with flow cytometric cell counts and microbial community analysis. Our findings demonstrate that the multi-parametric approach used provides a powerful

  9. Significant vestibular system impairment is common in a cohort of elderly patients referred for assessment of falls risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobson, Gary P; McCaslin, Devin L; Grantham, Sarah L; Piker, Erin G

    2008-01-01

    Falls in elderly patients are associated with morbidity, mortality, and cost to the healthcare system. The development of falls risk assessment programs have represented a method of responding to what is known about injurious falls. The multidimensional assessments involve the comparison against normative data of a patient's performance on metrics known to influence the likelihood of future falls. The factors assessed usually include falls and medication history, measures of mentation, depression, orthostatic hypotension, simple or choice reaction time, gait stability, postural stability, and the integrity of the patient's vision, somesthetic, and vestibular senses. This investigation was conducted to measure the proportion of patients referred for falls risk assessment who have evidence of vestibular system impairment. Qualitative, retrospective review of data collected from 2003 to 2007. The cohort was 185 consecutive patients referred for multidimensional assessments of falls risk. Patients underwent quantitative assessments of peripheral and central vestibular system function consisting of electro- or videonystagmography (i.e., ENG/VNG), and sinusoidal harmonic acceleration testing. Results of these tests were compared to normative data. We found that 73% of the sample who underwent vestibular system assessment had quantitative evidence of either peripheral or central vestibular system impairment. Our results suggest that quantitative assessments of the vestibulo-ocular reflex should be conducted on patients who are evaluated for falls risk. These examinations should include at least caloric testing and, where available, rotational testing.

  10. Comparison of Chemical, Biological and Physical Quality Assessment of Indoor Swimming Pools in Shahrekord City, Iran in 2013

    OpenAIRE

    Fadaei, Abdolmajid; Amiri, Masoud

    2014-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that mismanaged swimming pools could transmit water-borne diseases. The objective of the present study was the quality assessment of chemical, biological and physical characteristics of swimming pools in Shahrekord city, southwest of Iran. The two main indoor swimming pools of Shahrekord city were considered during the summer and winter of 2013. The number of 459 samples were analysed from swimming pools, showers and dressing rooms for chemical, biological and phys...

  11. Assessing Impacts of Climate Change on Forests: The State of Biological Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale, V. H.; Rauscher, H. M.

    1993-04-06

    Models that address the impacts to forests of climate change are reviewed by four levels of biological organization: global, regional or landscape, community, and tree. The models are compared as to their ability to assess changes in greenhouse gas flux, land use, maps of forest type or species composition, forest resource productivity, forest health, biodiversity, and wildlife habitat. No one model can address all of these impacts, but landscape transition models and regional vegetation and land-use models consider the largest number of impacts. Developing landscape vegetation dynamics models of functional groups is suggested as a means to integrate the theory of both landscape ecology and individual tree responses to climate change. Risk assessment methodologies can be adapted to deal with the impacts of climate change at various spatial and temporal scales. Four areas of research development are identified: (1) linking socioeconomic and ecologic models, (2) interfacing forest models at different scales, (3) obtaining data on susceptibility of trees and forest to changes in climate and disturbance regimes, and (4) relating information from different scales.

  12. Biological assessment for the remedial action at the chemical plant area of the Weldon Spring site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hlohowskyj, I.; Dunn, C.P.

    1992-11-01

    The Weldon Spring site in St.Charles County, Missouri, became contaminated during the 1940s through the 1960s as a result of explosives production by the US Army and uranium and thorium processing by the predecessor agency of the US Department of Energy (DOE). The site is listed on the National Priorities List of the US Environmental Protection Agency, and DOE is responsible for its cleanup. Contaminants are present in soil, surface water, and aquatic sediments. Alternatives identified for site remediation are no action (included as baseline for comparison), treatment and disposal of the wastes at the Weldon Spring site, and on-site treatment followed by off-site disposal at either a commercial facility near Clive, Utah, or at DOE`s Hanford site near Richland, Washington. In accordance with the requirements of the Endangered Species Act, this biological assessment has been prepared to evaluate the potential effects of proposed remedial action alternatives on federal listed (endangered or threatened) and candidate species at the respective sites. The assessment includes consideration of the environmental setting at each site; the federal listed and candidate species that could occur at each site; the construction, excavation, and treatment activities under each alternative; and the amount of land area affected at each site.

  13. Biological assessment for the remedial action at the chemical plant area of the Weldon Spring site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hlohowskyj, I.; Dunn, C.P.

    1992-11-01

    The Weldon Spring site in St.Charles County, Missouri, became contaminated during the 1940s through the 1960s as a result of explosives production by the US Army and uranium and thorium processing by the predecessor agency of the US Department of Energy (DOE). The site is listed on the National Priorities List of the US Environmental Protection Agency, and DOE is responsible for its cleanup. Contaminants are present in soil, surface water, and aquatic sediments. Alternatives identified for site remediation are no action (included as baseline for comparison), treatment and disposal of the wastes at the Weldon Spring site, and on-site treatment followed by off-site disposal at either a commercial facility near Clive, Utah, or at DOE's Hanford site near Richland, Washington. In accordance with the requirements of the Endangered Species Act, this biological assessment has been prepared to evaluate the potential effects of proposed remedial action alternatives on federal listed (endangered or threatened) and candidate species at the respective sites. The assessment includes consideration of the environmental setting at each site; the federal listed and candidate species that could occur at each site; the construction, excavation, and treatment activities under each alternative; and the amount of land area affected at each site.

  14. Assessing impacts of climate change on forests: The state of biological modeling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dale, V.H. [Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States); Rauscher, H.M. [Forest Service, Grand Rapids, MI (United States). North Central Forest Experiment Station

    1993-04-06

    Models that address the impacts to forests of climate change are reviewed by four levels of biological organization: global, regional or landscape, community, and tree. The models are compared as to their ability to assess changes in greenhouse gas flux, land use, maps of forest type or species composition, forest resource productivity, forest health, biodiversity, and wildlife habitat. No one model can address all of these impacts, but landscape transition models and regional vegetation and land-use models consider the largest number of impacts. Developing landscape vegetation dynamics models of functional groups is suggested as a means to integrate the theory of both landscape ecology and individual tree responses to climate change. Risk assessment methodologies can be adapted to deal with the impacts of climate change at various spatial and temporal scales. Four areas of research development are identified: (1) linking socioeconomic and ecologic models, (2) interfacing forest models at different scales, (3) obtaining data on susceptibility of trees and forest to changes in climate and disturbance regimes, and (4) relating information from different scales.

  15. Environmental risk assessment of exotic natural enemies used in inundative biological control

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lenteren, van J.C.; Babendreier, D.; Bigler, F.; Burgio, G.; Hokkanen, H.M.T.; Kuske, S.; Loomans, A.J.M.; Menzler-Hokkanen, I.; Rijn, van P.C.J.; Thomas, M.B.; Tommasini, M.G.; Zeng, Q.Q.

    2003-01-01

    In the past 100 years many exotic naturalenemies have been imported, mass reared andreleased as biological control agents. Negativeenvironmental effects of these releases haverarely been reported. The current popularity ofinundative biological control may, however,result in problems, as an

  16. Biological Assessment of the Advanced Turbine Design at Wanapum Dam, 2005

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dauble, Dennis D.; Deng, Zhiqun; Richmond, Marshall C.; Moursund, Russell A.; Carlson, Thomas J.; Rakowski, Cynthia L.; Duncan, Joanne P.

    2007-09-12

    This report summarizes the results of studies sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy and conducted by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to evaluate the biological performance (likelihood of injury to fish) from an advanced design turbine installed at Unit 8 of Wanapum Dam on the Columbia River in Washington State in 2005. PNNL studies included a novel dye technique to measure injury to juvenile fish in the field, an evaluation of blade-strike using both deterministic and stochastic models, and extended analysis of the response of the Sensor Fish Device to strike, pressure, and turbulence within the turbine system. Fluorescein dye was used to evaluate injuries to live fish passed through the advanced turbine and an existing turbine at two spill discharges (15 and 17 kcfs). Under most treatments the results were not significantly different for the two turbines, however, eye injury occurred in nearly 30% of fish passing through Unit 9 but in less than 10% of those passing through Unit 8 at 15 kcfs. Both deterministic and stochastic blade-strike models were applied for the original and new AHTS turbines. The modeled probabilities were compared to the Sensor Fish results (Carlson et al. 2006) and the biological studies using juvenile fish (Normandeau et al. 2005) under the same operational parameters. The new AHTS turbine had slightly higher modeled injury rates than the original turbine, but no statistical evidence to suggest that there is significant difference in blade-strike injury probabilities between the two turbines, which is consistent with the experiment results using Sensor Fish and juvenile fish. PNNL also conducted Sensor Fish studies at Wanapum Dam in 2005 concurrent with live fish studies. The probablility of severe collision events was similar for both turbine. The advanced turbine had a slightly lower probability of severe shear events but a slightly higher probability of slight shear.

  17. Finding of No Significant Impact and Environmental Assessment for Establishment of Proposed Manatee Sanctuaries in Kings Bay of Crystal River

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This environmental assessment (EA) evaluates seven alternatives for controlling human harassment of the West Indian Manatee an endangered species. The preferred...

  18. Implementation and Assessment of a Molecular Biology and Bioinformatics Undergraduate Degree Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pham, Daphne Q. -D.; Higgs, David C.; Statham, Anne; Schleiter, Mary Kay

    2008-01-01

    The Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside has developed and implemented an innovative, multidisciplinary undergraduate curriculum in Molecular Biology and Bioinformatics (MBB). The objective of the MBB program is to give students a hands-on facility with molecular biology theories and laboratory techniques, an…

  19. Horns Rev offshore wind farm. Environmental impact assessment of sea bottom and marine biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leonhard, S.B.

    2000-03-15

    An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of a planned 150 MW offshore wind farm at Horns Rev has been carried out for the marine biology and sea bottom in the area, and includes vegetation and benthic fauna. The study forms part of a total EIA of the planned offshore wind farm. This EIA study has been drawn up in accordance with the guidelines laid down by the Ministry of Environment and Energy in the publication, 'Guidelines for preparation of EIAstudies for offshore wind farms. Horns Rev is situated off Blaevands Huk, which is Denmark's most westerly point. It is a shallow reef with water depths between 2 and 9 metres and is primarily composed of sand, gravel and pebbles. The area designated for the wind farm lies directly south of Horns Rev and is dominated by sand with a median particle size of 0.3 mm. Along the edges, towards areas of greater depth, the particle size increases. There are areas of fine sand in the deepest area, and in isolated pockets within the proposed wind farm site. The sediment is characterised by a very low (<1%) organic matter content. On the basis of the expected impact from the establishment of the wind farm, it is not deemed necessary to carry out special programmes during the construction phase for monitoring of the environmental-biological conditions. A monitoring and control programme is recommended during the production phase in order to follow the copper concentration in bivalves, or alternatively to initiate recovery or elimination of the copper-laden waste. A control programme is recommended during the production phase in order to follow the establishment and succession of the fouling community on the wind turbine foundations and scour-protecting revetments. (BA)

  20. The biological assessment of flora and fauna as standards for changes in the near-shore ocean environment: a study of Barbers Point Harbor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hokama, Y; Wachi, K M; Shiraki, A; Goo, C; Ebesu, J S

    2001-02-01

    The biological assessments of the flora and fauna in the near-shore ocean environment, specifically Barbers Point Harbor (BPH), demonstrate the usefulness of these biological analyses for evaluation of the changes occurring following man-made excavation for expansion of the harbor. The study included identification and enumeration of macroalgae and dinoflagellates and analyses of herbivores and carnivores in four areas within the perimeter of the harbor and the north and south entrances into the harbor. Numbers of macroalgae varied between 1994 and 1999 surveys, with significant decrease in numbers in stations C, D and E. Stations A and B were similar between 1994 and 1999 with a slight increase in 1999. The significant differences were shown with the appearance of Gambierdiscus toxicus (G toxicus) in 1999 among the algae in stations A and B. Assessment of herbivores and carnivores with the immunological membrane immunobead assay using monoclonal antibody to ciguatoxin and related polyethers demonstrated an increase in fish toxicity among the herbivore from 1994-1999 (22% increase) with a decrease (22%) in non-toxic fish. This was also demonstrated in the carnivores, but to a lesser degree. It is suggested that the biological analyses of the flora and the fauna of the near-shore ocean environment are appropriate to assess the changes that occur from natural and man-made alterations.

  1. ASSESSMENT OF THE RESPONSE OF PATIENTS WITH CROHN'S DISEASE TO BIOLOGICAL THERAPY USING NEW NON-INVASIVE MARKERS: lactoferrin and calprotectin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Islaine Martins NOGUEIRA

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Context The use of fecal markers to monitor Crohn's disease is crucial for assessing the response to treatment. Objective To assess the inflammatory activity of Crohn's disease by comparing fecal markers (calprotectin and lactoferrin, colonoscopy combined with biopsy, and the Crohn's disease activity index (CDAI, as well as serum markers, before treatment with infliximab, after the end of induction, and after the end of maintenance. Methods Seventeen patients were included who had been previously diagnosed with Crohn's disease and were using conventional treatment but required the introduction of biological therapy with infliximab. Each patient underwent a colonoscopy with biopsy, serum, and fecal (calprotectin and lactoferrin tests to assess inflammatory activity, and CDAI assessments before treatment with infliximab, after induction (week 8, and after maintenance (week 32. Results The calprotectin levels exhibited significant reductions (P = 0.04 between the assessment before treatment with infliximab and the end of induction, which did not occur after the end of the maintenance phase. Lactoferrin remained positive throughout the three phases of the study. Regarding the histological assessment, a significant difference was found only between the assessment before treatment and after the end of maintenance (P = 0.036, and 60% of the patients exhibited histological improvements after the completion of the follow-up period. The CDAI exhibited a significant difference between the assessment before treatment with infliximab and after induction, as well as before treatment and after maintenance (P<0.01. Conclusion Calprotectin and lactoferrin are not useful for monitoring inflammatory activity in Crohn's disease patients who are subjected to biological therapy.

  2. Assessment of CD37 B-cell antigen and cell of origin significantly improves risk prediction in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu-Monette, Zijun Y; Li, Ling; Byrd, John C; Jabbar, Kausar J; Manyam, Ganiraju C; Maria de Winde, Charlotte; van den Brand, Michiel; Tzankov, Alexandar; Visco, Carlo; Wang, Jing; Dybkaer, Karen; Chiu, April; Orazi, Attilio; Zu, Youli; Bhagat, Govind; Richards, Kristy L; Hsi, Eric D; Choi, William W L; Huh, Jooryung; Ponzoni, Maurilio; Ferreri, Andrés J M; Møller, Michael B; Parsons, Ben M; Winter, Jane N; Wang, Michael; Hagemeister, Frederick B; Piris, Miguel A; Han van Krieken, J; Medeiros, L Jeffrey; Li, Yong; van Spriel, Annemiek B; Young, Ken H

    2016-12-29

    CD37 (tetraspanin TSPAN26) is a B-cell surface antigen widely expressed on mature B cells. CD37 is involved in immune regulation and tumor suppression but its function has not been fully elucidated. We assessed CD37 expression in de novo diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), and investigated its clinical and biologic significance in 773 patients treated with rituximab plus cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone (R-CHOP) and 231 patients treated with CHOP. We found that CD37 loss (CD37(-)) in ∼60% of DLBCL patients showed significantly decreased survival after R-CHOP treatment, independent of the International Prognostic Index (IPI), germinal center B-cell-like (GCB)/activated B-cell-like (ABC) cell of origin, nodal/extranodal primary origin, and the prognostic factors associated with CD37(-), including TP53 mutation, NF-κB(high), Myc(high), phosphorylated STAT3(high), survivin(high), p63(-), and BCL6 translocation. CD37 positivity predicted superior survival, abolishing the prognostic impact of high IPI and above biomarkers in GCB-DLBCL but not in ABC-DLBCL. Combining risk scores for CD37(-) status and ABC cell of origin with the IPI, defined as molecularly adjusted IPI for R-CHOP (M-IPI-R), or IPI plus immunohistochemistry (IHC; IPI+IHC) for CD37, Myc, and Bcl-2, significantly improved risk prediction over IPI alone. Gene expression profiling suggested that decreased CD20 and increased PD-1 levels in CD37(-) DLBCL, ICOSLG upregulation in CD37(+) GCB-DLBCL, and CD37 functions during R-CHOP treatment underlie the pivotal role of CD37 status in clinical outcomes. In conclusion, CD37 is a critical determinant of R-CHOP outcome in DLBCL especially in GCB-DLBCL, representing its importance for optimal rituximab action and sustained immune responses. The combined molecular and clinical prognostic indices, M-IPI-R and IPI+IHC, have remarkable predictive values in R-CHOP-treated DLBCL. © 2016 by The American Society of Hematology.

  3. Molecular subtype and tumor characteristics of breast cancer metastases as assessed by gene expression significantly influence patient post-relapse survival.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tobin, N P; Harrell, J C; Lövrot, J; Egyhazi Brage, S; Frostvik Stolt, M; Carlsson, L; Einbeigi, Z; Linderholm, B; Loman, N; Malmberg, M; Walz, T; Fernö, M; Perou, C M; Bergh, J; Hatschek, T; Lindström, L S

    2015-01-01

    We and others have recently shown that tumor characteristics are altered throughout tumor progression. These findings emphasize the need for re-examination of tumor characteristics at relapse and have led to recommendations from ESMO and the Swedish Breast Cancer group. Here, we aim to determine whether tumor characteristics and molecular subtypes in breast cancer metastases confer clinically relevant prognostic information for patients. The translational aspect of the Swedish multicenter randomized trial called TEX included 111 patients with at least one biopsy from a morphologically confirmed locoregional or distant breast cancer metastasis diagnosed from December 2002 until June 2007. All patients had detailed clinical information, complete follow-up, and metastasis gene expression information (Affymetrix array GPL10379). We assessed the previously published gene expression modules describing biological processes [proliferation, apoptosis, human epidermal receptor 2 (HER2) and estrogen (ER) signaling, tumor invasion, immune response, and angiogenesis] and pathways (Ras, MAPK, PTEN, AKT-MTOR, PI3KCA, IGF1, Src, Myc, E2F3, and β-catenin) and the intrinsic subtypes (PAM50). Furthermore, by contrasting genes expressed in the metastases in relation to survival, we derived a poor metastasis survival signature. A significant reduction in post-relapse breast cancer-specific survival was associated with low-ER receptor signaling and apoptosis gene module scores, and high AKT-MTOR, Ras, and β-catenin module scores. Similarly, intrinsic subtyping of the metastases provided statistically significant post-relapse survival information with the worst survival outcome in the basal-like [hazard ratio (HR) 3.7; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.3-10.9] and HER2-enriched (HR 4.4; 95% CI 1.5-12.8) subtypes compared with the luminal A subtype. Overall, 25% of the metastases were basal-like, 32% HER2-enriched, 10% luminal A, 28% luminal B, and 5% normal-like. We show that tumor

  4. 47 CFR 1.1307 - Actions that may have a significant environmental effect, for which Environmental Assessments...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ..., sites, buildings, structures or objects, significant in American history, architecture, archeology....1093 of this chapter by finite difference time domain computational modeling or laboratory measurement techniques. Where a showing is based on computational modeling, the Commission retains the discretion to...

  5. The Effects of the SUN Project on Teacher Knowledge and Self-Efficacy Regarding Biological Energy Transfer Are Significant and Long-Lasting: Results of a Randomized Controlled Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batiza, Ann Finney; Gruhl, Mary; Zhang, Bo; Harrington, Tom; Roberts, Marisa; LaFlamme, Donna; Haasch, Mary Anne; Knopp, Jonathan; Vogt, Gina; Goodsell, David; Hagedorn, Eric; Marcey, David; Hoelzer, Mark; Nelson, Dave

    2013-01-01

    Biological energy flow has been notoriously difficult to teach. Our approach to this topic relies on abiotic and biotic examples of the energy released by moving electrons in thermodynamically spontaneous reactions. A series of analogical model-building experiences was supported with common language and representations including manipulatives. These materials were designed to help learners understand why electrons move in a hydrogen explosion and hydrogen fuel cell, so they could ultimately understand the rationale for energy transfer in the mitochondrion and the chloroplast. High school biology teachers attended a 2-wk Students Understanding eNergy (SUN) workshop during a randomized controlled trial. These treatment group teachers then took hydrogen fuel cells, manipulatives, and other materials into their regular biology classrooms. In this paper, we report significant gains in teacher knowledge and self-efficacy regarding biological energy transfer in the treatment group versus randomized controls. Significant effects on treatment group teacher knowledge and self-efficacy were found not only post–SUN workshop but even 1 yr later. Teacher knowledge was measured with both a multiple-choice exam and a drawing with a written explanation. Teacher confidence in their ability to teach biological energy transfer was measured by a modified form of the Science Teaching Efficacy Belief Instrument, In-Service A. Professional development implications regarding this topic are discussed. PMID:23737635

  6. Significant and sustaining elevation of blood oxygen induced by Chinese cupping therapy as assessed by near-infrared spectroscopy

    OpenAIRE

    Li, Ting; Li, Yaoxian; Lin, Yu; Li, Kai

    2016-01-01

    Cupping therapy has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years to relieve muscle pain/tendency/fatigue and to cure or reduce symbols of other diseases. However, its therapeutic effect is sparsely interpreted in the language of modern physiology. To objectively evaluate its therapeutic effect, we focused on dry cupping treatment and utilized near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) to assess the concentration change in oxy-hemoglobin ([HbO2]), deoxy-hemoglobin ([Hb]), and blood ...

  7. The significance of motivation in periodontal treatment: validity and reliability of the motivation assessment scale among patients undergoing periodontal treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pac, A; Oruba, Z; Olszewska-Czyż, I; Chomyszyn-Gajewska, M

    2014-03-01

    The individual evaluation of patients' motivation should be introduced to the protocol of periodontal treatment, as it could impact positively on effective treatment planning and treatment outcomes. However, a standardised tool measuring the extent of periodontal patients' motivation has not yet been proposed in the literature. Thus, the objective of the present study was to determine the validity and reliability of the Zychlińscy motivation scale adjusted to the needs of periodontology. Cross sectional study. Department of Periodontology and Oral Medicine, Dental University Clinic, Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland. 199 adult periodontal patients, aged 20-78. 14-item questionnaire. The items were adopted from the original Zychlińscy motivation assessment scale. Validity and reliability of the proposed motivation assessment instrument. The assessed Cronbach's alpha of 0.79 indicates the scale is a reliable tool. Principal component analysis revealed a model with three factors, which explained half of the total variance. Those factors represented: the patient's attitude towards treatment and oral hygiene practice; previous experiences during treatment; and the influence of external conditions on the patient's attitude towards treatment. The proposed scale proved to be a reliable and accurate tool for the evaluation of periodontal patients' motivation.

  8. The Biological Effectiveness of Silicon Ions is Significantly Higher than Iron Ions for the Induction of Chromosome Damage in Human Lymphocytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    George, Kerry; Hada, Megumi; Cucinotta, F. A.

    2010-01-01

    Chromosome aberrations were measured in human peripheral blood lymphocytes after in vitro exposure to Si-28-ions with energies ranging from 90 to 600 MeV/u, or Fe-56-ions with energies ranging from 200 to 5,000 MeV/u. The LET of the various Fe beams in this study ranged from 145 to 440 keV/micron and the LET Si ions ranged from 48 to 158 keV/micron. Doses delivered were in the 10 to 200 cGy range. Dose response curves for chromosome exchanges in cells at first division after exposure, measured using fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with whole chromosome probes, were fitted with linear or linear-quadratic functions. The relative biological effectiveness (RBE) was estimated from the initial slope of the dose response curve for chromosome damage with respect to gamma-rays. The estimates of RBE(sub max) values for total chromosome exchanges ranged from 4.4+/-0.4 to 31.5+/-2.6 for Fe ions, and 11.8+/-1.0 to 42.2+/-3.3 for Si ions. The highest RBE(sub max) value for Fe ions was obtained with the 600 Mev/u beam and 170 MeV/u beam produced the highest RBE(sub max) value for Si ions. For both ions the RBE(sub max) values increased with LET, reaching a maximum at about 180 keV/micron for Fe and about 100 keV/micron for Si, and decreased with further increase in LET.

  9. Assessing co-regulation of directly linked genes in biological networks using microarray time series analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del Sorbo, Maria Rosaria; Balzano, Walter; Donato, Michele; Draghici, Sorin

    2013-11-01

    Differential expression of genes detected with the analysis of high throughput genomic experiments is a commonly used intermediate step for the identification of signaling pathways involved in the response to different biological conditions. The impact analysis was the first approach for the analysis of signaling pathways involved in a certain biological process that was able to take into account not only the magnitude of the expression change of the genes but also the topology of signaling pathways including the type of each interactions between the genes. In the impact analysis, signaling pathways are represented as weighted directed graphs with genes as nodes and the interactions between genes as edges. Edges weights are represented by a β factor, the regulatory efficiency, which is assumed to be equal to 1 in inductive interactions between genes and equal to -1 in repressive interactions. This study presents a similarity analysis between gene expression time series aimed to find correspondences with the regulatory efficiency, i.e. the β factor as found in a widely used pathway database. Here, we focused on correlations among genes directly connected in signaling pathways, assuming that the expression variations of upstream genes impact immediately downstream genes in a short time interval and without significant influences by the interactions with other genes. Time series were processed using three different similarity metrics. The first metric is based on the bit string matching; the second one is a specific application of the Dynamic Time Warping to detect similarities even in presence of stretching and delays; the third one is a quantitative comparative analysis resulting by an evaluation of frequency domain representation of time series: the similarity metric is the correlation between dominant spectral components. These three approaches are tested on real data and pathways, and a comparison is performed using Information Retrieval benchmark tools

  10. [Delayed medical consequences of the Chernobyl accident in Armenia. Assessment of life quality and accelerated biological aging of accident liquidators].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oganesian, N M; Davidian, N R; Gevorkian, E G; Karapetian, A G; Miridzhanian, M I; Asrian, K V

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, some final results of 25-year investigations carried out in Scientific Centre for Radiation Medicine and Burns MH RA (SCRMB) on the Armenian cohort of the Chernobyl accident consequences liquidators are shown. These results show that health conditions of the liquidators became worse during the whole observation period. A considerable development of both pathological states atypical of radiation damages and diseases, which may be considered as radiation-induced ones, was determined. Rise of the sickness rate of almost all organism systems, first of all, nervous, cardiovascular, respiratory and digestive ones, was observed. In 70% of liquidators the main disease was primarily detected after working on CNPP. In the intervening years, the average number of diagnoses per 1 liquidator increased from 1.5 in 1987 to 7-8 in the recent time. In addition to the detected diseases, particular functional shifts in neuropsychological and vegetative status of the liquidators were observed. The overwhelming majority of them have increased tonicity of the sympathetic vegetative nervous system, asthenic and depressive syndromes occurring in the form of weakness, somnolence, mood instability, mental capacity decrease, and memory defects. In the paper, the results of investigations aimed at clarification of changes in biological aging processes of the liquidators and assessment of their "life quality" features in terms of physical, psychical and social welfare are considered. Biological aged-related passportization in a definite part of liquidators elucidated an accelerated aging rate. The studies were performed with the help of SF-36 inquirer and indicated that health status aggravation of the liquidators also affected their life satisfaction. The "life quality" indices of the liquidators significantly concede the overall average standards by both physical health and psychical and social welfare scales.

  11. Including a Service Learning Educational Research Project in a Biology Course-I: Assessing Community Awareness of Childhood Lead Poisoning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abu-Shakra, Amal; Saliim, Eric

    2012-01-01

    A university course project was developed and implemented in a biology course, focusing on environmental problems, to assess community awareness of childhood lead poisoning. A set of 385 questionnaires was generated and distributed in an urban community in North Carolina, USA. The completed questionnaires were sorted first into yes and no sets…

  12. Student Performance along Axes of Scenario Novelty and Complexity in Introductory Biology: Lessons from a Unique Factorial Approach to Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deane-Coe, Kirsten K.; Sarvary, Mark A.; Owens, Thomas G.

    2017-01-01

    In an undergraduate introductory biology laboratory course, we used a summative assessment to directly test the learning objective that students will be able to apply course material to increasingly novel and complex situations. Using a factorial framework, we developed multiple true-false questions to fall along axes of novelty and complexity,…

  13. Assessment of Left Ventricular Torsion in Short Axis View between Healthy Subjects and Significant Coronary Artery Disease Patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zahra Arab

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: Coronary artery disease causes changes in biomechanical parameters and function of myocardial. Recently, torsion angle is one of the most important mechanical parameters. Therefore in this study, torsion angle in healthy subjects and LAD significant coronary artery disease patients, using echo tracking method in short axis view, was evaluated.Materials and Methods: In cross sectional study, 14 healthy subjects and 10 patients with significant stenosis of LAD were evaluated. Two dimensional echocardiography images were scanned in apical and basal parasternal short axis view were recorded. Successive ultrasonic images were processed by echo tracking under block matching algorithm and peak torsion angle were estimated. Difference between healthy group and patient group were extracted by using peak torsion angle by the confidence level of 95%.Results: In this study, basal rotation angle, apical rotation angle and torsion angle in short axis view in significant coronary artery disease patients significantly decreased 33%, 44% and 38% relative to healthy subjects, respectively. Also time to reach peak torsion angle in LAD coronary artery stenosis patients increased 19% relative to healthy group.Conclusion: It seems, torsion angle in short axis view, can diagnose LAD coronary artery stenosis patients reative to healthy subject.

  14. 75 FR 26708 - ArborGen, LLC; Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-12

    ... things, the introduction (importation, interstate movement, or release into the environment) of organisms... procedures for the importation, interstate movement, or release in the environment of a regulated article. On... Significant Impact for a Controlled Release of Genetically Engineered Eucalyptus Hybrids AGENCY: Animal and...

  15. 76 FR 60091 - Notice of Availability of Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for the...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-28

    ... using an R134a-based refrigeration system. The refrigeration system releases heat to a potable water... staff concludes that the proposed action will not have a significant impact on the local water supply... meters (1000 yards) from the reactor site. The UUTR is a pool-type, light water moderated and cooled...

  16. Indium arsenide as a material for biological applications: Assessment of surface modifications, toxicity, and biocompatibility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jewett, Scott A.

    III-V semiconductors such as InAs have recently been employed in a variety of applications where the electronic and optical characteristics of traditional, silicon-based materials are inadequate. InAs has a narrow band gap and very high electron mobility in the near-surface region, which makes it very attractive for high performance transistors, optical applications, and chemical sensing. However, InAs forms an unstable surface oxide layer in ambient conditions, which can corrode over time and leach toxic indium and arsenic components. Current research has gone into making InAs more attractive for biological applications through passivation of the surface by adlayer adsorption. In particular, wet-chemical methods are current routes of exploration due to their simplicity, low cost, and flexibility in the type of passivating molecule. This dissertation focuses on surface modifications of InAs using wet-chemical methods in order to further its use in biological applications. First, the adsorption of collagen binding peptides and mixed peptide/thiol adlayers onto InAs was assessed. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) along with atomic force microscopy (AFM) data suggested that the peptides successfully adsorbed onto InAs, but were only able to block oxide regrowth to a relatively low extent. This low passivation ability is due to the lack of covalent bonds of the peptide to InAs, which are necessary to effectively block oxide regrowth. The addition of a thiol, in the form of mixed peptide/thiol adlayers greatly enhanced passivation of InAs while maintaining peptide presence on the surface. Thiols form tight, covalent bonds with InAs, which prevents oxide regrowth. The presence of the collagen-binding peptide on the surface opens the door to subsequent modification with collagen or polyelectrolyte-based adlayers. Next, the stability and toxicity of modified InAs substrates were determined using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and zebrafish

  17. DISORDERED PORPHYRIN METABOLISM: A POTENTIAL BIOLOGICAL MARKER FOR AUTISM RISK ASSESSMENT

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heyer, Nicholas J.; Echeverria, Diana; Woods, James S.

    2011-01-01

    Autism (AUT) is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder that, together with Asperger Syndrome and Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS), comprises the expanded classification of autistic spectrum disorder (ASD). The heterogeneity of ASD underlies the need to identify biomarkers or clinical features that can be employed to identify meaningful subtypes of ASD, define specific etiologies, and inform intervention and treatment options. Previous studies have shown that disordered porphyrin metabolism, manifested principally as significantly elevated urinary concentrations of pentacarboxyl- (penta) and copro- porphyrins, is commonly observed among some children with ASD. Here, we extend these observations by specifically evaluating penta and copro porphyrins as biological indicators of ASD among 76 male children comprising 30 with validated AUT, 14 with PDD-NOS and 32 neurotypical (NT) controls. ASD children (AUT and PDD-NOS) had higher mean urinary penta (p porphyrin measures are strong predictors of both AUT and PDD-NOS and support the potential clinical utility of urinary porphyrin measures for identifying a subgroup of ASD subjects in whom disordered porphyrin metabolism may be a salient characteristic. PMID:22298513

  18. Fabrication, characterization, and biological assessment of multilayer laminin γ2 DNA coatings on titanium surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Guoli; Zhang, Jing; Dong, Wenjing; Liu, Li; Shi, Jue; Wang, Huiming

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this work was to fabricate a multilayer laminin γ2 DNA coating on a titanium surface and evaluate its biological properties. A multilayer laminin γ2 DNA coating was fabricated on titanium using a layer-by-layer assembly technique. The rate of coating degradation was evaluated by detecting the amount of cDNA remaining. Surface analysis using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, atomic force microscopy, and surface contact angle measurements revealed the multilayer structure to consist of cationic lipid and confirmed that a laminin γ2 DNA layer could be fabricated on titanium via the layer-by-layer assembly process. The transfection efficiency was highest for five layers in the multilayer structure. HEK293 cells cultured on the multilayer films displayed significantly higher adhesion activity than the control group. The expression of laminin γ2 and the co-localization of integrin β4 and plectin were more obvious in HN4 cells cultured on the multilayer laminin γ2 DNA coating, while weak immunoreactivities were observed in the control group. We concluded that the DNA-loaded multilayer provided a surface with good biocompatibility and that the multilayer laminin γ2 DNA coating might be effective in improving cell adhesion and the formation of hemidesmosomes on titanium surfaces. PMID:26996815

  19. A microbiology-based multi-parametric approach towards assessing biological stability in drinking water distribution networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lautenschlager, Karin; Hwang, Chiachi; Liu, Wen-Tso; Boon, Nico; Köster, Oliver; Vrouwenvelder, Hans; Egli, Thomas; Hammes, Frederik

    2013-06-01

    Biological stability of drinking water implies that the concentration of bacterial cells and composition of the microbial community should not change during distribution. In this study, we used a multi-parametric approach that encompasses different aspects of microbial water quality including microbial growth potential, microbial abundance, and microbial community composition, to monitor biological stability in drinking water of the non-chlorinated distribution system of Zürich. Drinking water was collected directly after treatment from the reservoir and in the network at several locations with varied average hydraulic retention times (6-52 h) over a period of four months, with a single repetition two years later. Total cell concentrations (TCC) measured with flow cytometry remained remarkably stable at 9.5 (± 0.6) × 10(4) cells/ml from water in the reservoir throughout most of the distribution network, and during the whole time period. Conventional microbial methods like heterotrophic plate counts, the concentration of adenosine tri-phosphate, total organic carbon and assimilable organic carbon remained also constant. Samples taken two years apart showed more than 80% similarity for the microbial communities analysed with denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and 454 pyrosequencing. Only the two sampling locations with the longest water retention times were the exceptions and, so far for unknown reasons, recorded a slight but significantly higher TCC (1.3 (± 0.1) × 10(5) cells/ml) compared to the other locations. This small change in microbial abundance detected by flow cytometry was also clearly observed in a shift in the microbial community profiles to a higher abundance of members from the Comamonadaceae (60% vs. 2% at other locations). Conventional microbial detection methods were not able to detect changes as observed with flow cytometric cell counts and microbial community analysis. Our findings demonstrate that the multi-parametric approach used

  20. Concentration of indocyanine green does not significantly influence lymphatic function as assessed by near-infrared imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aldrich, M B; Davies-Venn, C; Angermiller, B; Robinson, H; Chan, W; Kwon, S; Sevick-Muraca, E M

    2012-03-01

    Absorbance of near-infrared (600-800 nm) light by the tissue components water, melanin, and hemoglobin is minimal. This property allows the use of near-infrared-emitting fluorophores for noninvasive, in vivo, real-time imaging of tissue, without the interference of autofluorescence experienced with imaging in other wavelength ranges. Near-infrared (NIR) fluorescence imaging has been used to noninvasively image lymphatic architecture and pumping function in animals, as well as in humans. The effects of different doses of a NIR dye, indocyanine green (ICG), on lymphatic function have been questioned. This study aims to address these concerns in the context of a mouse inguinal-to-axillary lymphatic imaging model. We measured lymph propulsive velocity and frequency using an imaging system composed of a laser diode for excitation of the dye, an image intensifier, and an intensified charge-coupled device (ICCD) camera to capture real-time images. At 0.32, 0.645, and 1.3 mM ICG, no significant differences in lymphatic propulsive velocity or frequency were observed. Additionally, the use of other NIR imaging agents did not result in significant differences. The use of different concentrations of ICG and the use of other near-infrared fluorophores for optical imaging of lymphatics does not significantly affect lymphatic propulsive velocity or frequency.

  1. The significance of cephalopod beaks in marine ecology studies: Can we use beaks for DNA analyses and mercury contamination assessment?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xavier, José Carlos; Ferreira, Sónia; Tavares, Sílvia; Santos, Nuno; Mieiro, Cláudia Leopoldina; Trathan, Phil N; Lourenço, Sílvia; Martinho, Filipe; Steinke, Dirk; Seco, José; Pereira, Eduarda; Pardal, Miguel; Cherel, Yves

    2016-02-15

    Cephalopod beaks found in the diet of predators have been a major source of scientific information. In this study, we evaluated the usefulness of DNA and contaminants analysis (total mercury - T-Hg) in cephalopod beaks in order to assess their applicability as tools in marine ecology studies. We concluded that, when applying DNA techniques to cephalopod beaks from Antarctic squid species, when using flesh attached to those beaks, it was possible to obtain DNA and to successfully identify cephalopod species; DNA was not found on the beaks themselves. This study also showed that it is possible to obtain information on T-Hg concentrations in beaks: the T-Hg concentrations found in the beaks were 6 to 46 times lower than in the flesh of the same cephalopod species. More research on the relationships of mercury concentrations in cephalopod beaks (and other tissues), intra- and inter-specifically, are needed in the future. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Environmental assessment and finding of no significant impact: Biorecycling Technologies, Inc., Noble Biogas and Fertilizer Plant, Fresno County, California

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1997-09-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) is considering a proposal from the California Energy Commission for partial funding up to $1,500,000 of the construction of the biorecycling Technologies, Inc., (BTI) Noble Biogas and Fertilizer Plant in Fresno County, California. BTI along with its contractors and business partners would develop the plant, which would use manure and green waste to produce biogas and a variety of organic fertilizer products. The California Energy Commission has requested funding from the DOE Commercialization Ventures program to assist in the construction of the plant, which would produce up to one megawatt of electricity by burning biogas in a cogeneration unit. The purpose of this environmental assessment (EA) is to provide DOE and the public with information on potential environmental impacts associated with funding development of the proposed project.

  3. Burlington Bottoms Wildlife Mitigation Project. Final Environmental Assessment/Management Plan and Finding of No Significant Impact.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1994-12-01

    Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) proposes to fund wildlife management and enhancement activities for the Burlington bottoms wetlands mitigation site. Acquired by BPA in 1991, wildlife habitat at Burlington bottoms would contribute toward the goal of mitigation for wildlife losses and inundation of wildlife habitat due to the construction of Federal dams in the lower Columbia and Willamette River Basins. Target wildlife species identified for mitigation purposes are yellow warbler, great blue heron, black-capped chickadee, red-tailed hawk, valley quail, spotted sandpiper, wood duck, and beaver. The Draft Management Plan/Environmental Assessment (EA) describes alternatives for managing the Burlington Bottoms area, and evaluates the potential environmental impacts of the alternatives. Included in the Draft Management Plan/EA is an implementation schedule, and a monitoring and evaluation program, both of which are subject to further review pending determination of final ownership of the Burlington Bottoms property.

  4. Carboxylate ligands drastically enhance the rates of oxo exchange and hydrogen peroxide disproportionation by oxo manganese compounds of potential biological significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dubois, Lionel; Pécaut, Jacques; Charlot, Marie-France; Baffert, Carole; Collomb, Marie-Noëlle; Deronzier, Alain; Latour, Jean-Marc

    2008-01-01

    To mimic the carboxylate-rich active site of the manganese catalases more closely we introduced carboxylate groups into dimanganese complexes in place of nitrogen ligands. The series of dimanganese(III,IV) complexes of tripodal ligands [Mn(2)(L)(2)(O)(2)](3+/+/-/3-) was extended from those of tpa (1) and H(bpg) (2) to those of H(2)(pda) (3) and H(3)(nta) (4) (tpa=tris-picolylamine, H(bpg)=bis-picolylglycylamine, H(2)(pda)=picolyldiglycylamine, H(3)(nta)=nitrilotriacetic acid). While 3 [Mn(2)(pda)(2)(O)(2)][Na(H(2)O)(3)] could be synthesized at -20 degrees C and characterized in the solid state, 4 [Mn(2)(nta)(2)(O)(2)](3-) could be obtained and studied only in solution at -60 degrees C. A new synthetic procedure for the dimanganese(III,III) complexes was devised, using stoichiometric reduction of the dimanganese(III,IV) precursor by the benzil radical with EPR monitoring. This enabled the preparation of the parent dimanganese(III,III) complex 5 [Mn(2)(tpa)(2)(O)(2)](ClO(4))(2), which was structurally characterized. The UV/visible, IR, EPR, magnetic, and electrochemical properties of complexes 1-3 and 5 were analyzed to assess the electronic changes brought about by the carboxylate replacement of pyridine ligands. The kinetics of the oxo ligand exchanges with labeled water was examined in acetonitrile solution. A dramatic effect of the number of carboxylates was evidenced. Interestingly, the influence of the second carboxylate substitution differs from that of the first one probably because this substitution occurs on an out-of-plane coordination while the former occurs in the plane of the [Mn(2)O(2)] core. Indeed, on going from 1 to 3 the exchange rate was increased by a factor of 50. Addition of triethylamine caused a rate increase for 1, but not for 3. The abilities of 1-3 to disproportionate H(2)O(2) were assessed volumetrically. The disproportionation exhibited a sensitivity corresponding to the carboxylate substitution. These observations strongly suggest that

  5. Preliminary assessment of the interaction of introduced biological agents with biofilms in water distribution systems.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sinclair, Michael B.; Caldwell, Sara; Jones, Howland D. T.; Altman, Susan Jeanne; Souza, Caroline Ann; McGrath, Lucas K.

    2005-12-01

    Basic research is needed to better understand the potential risk of dangerous biological agents that are unintentionally or intentionally introduced into a water distribution system. We report on our capabilities to conduct such studies and our preliminary investigations. In 2004, the Biofilms Laboratory was initiated for the purpose of conducting applied research related to biofilms with a focus on application, application testing and system-scale research. Capabilities within the laboratory are the ability to grow biofilms formed from known bacteria or biofilms from drinking water. Biofilms can be grown quickly in drip-flow reactors or under conditions more analogous to drinking-water distribution systems in annular reactors. Biofilms can be assessed through standard microbiological techniques (i .e, aerobic plate counts) or with various visualization techniques including epifluorescent and confocal laser scanning microscopy and confocal fluorescence hyperspectral imaging with multivariate analysis. We have demonstrated the ability to grow reproducible Pseudomonas fluorescens biofilms in the annular reactor with plate counts on the order of 10{sup 5} and 10{sup 6} CFU/cm{sup 2}. Stationary phase growth is typically reached 5 to 10 days after inoculation. We have also conducted a series of pathogen-introduction experiments, where we have observed that both polystyrene microspheres and Bacillus cereus (as a surrogate for B. anthracis) stay incorporated in the biofilms for the duration of our experiments, which lasted as long as 36 days. These results indicated that biofilms may act as a safe harbor for bio-pathogens in drinking water systems, making it difficult to decontaminate the systems.

  6. Understanding publication bias in reintroduction biology by assessing translocations of New Zealand's herpetofauna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Kimberly A; Bell, Trent P; Germano, Jennifer M

    2014-08-01

    The intentional translocation of animals is an important tool for species conservation and ecosystem restoration, but reported success rates are low, particularly for threatened and endangered species. Publication bias further distorts success rates because the results of successful translocations may be more likely to be published than failed translocations. We conducted the first comprehensive review of all published and unpublished translocations of herpetofauna in New Zealand to assess publication bias. Of 74 translocations of 29 species in 25 years, 35 have been reported in the published literature, and the outcomes of 12 have been published. Using a traditional definition of success, publication bias resulted in a gross overestimate of translocation success rates (41.7% and 8.1% for published and all translocations, respectively), but bias against failed translocations was minimal (8.3% and 6.8%, respectively). Publication bias against translocations with uncertain outcomes, the vast majority of projects, was also strong (50.0% and 85.1% for published and all translocations, respectively). Recent translocations were less likely to be published than older translocations. The reasons behind translocations were related to publication. A greater percentage of translocations for conservation and research were published (63.3% and 40.0%, respectively) than translocations for mitigation during land development (10.0%). Translocations conducted in collaboration with a university were more frequently published (82.7% and 24.4%, respectively). To account for some of this publication bias, we reassessed the outcome of each translocation using a standardized definition of success, which takes into consideration the species' life history and the time since release. Our standardized definition of translocation success provided a more accurate summary of success rates and allows for a more rigorous evaluation of the causes of translocation success and failure in large

  7. Significant discrepancies exist between clinician assessment and patient self-assessment of functional capacity by validated scoring tools during preoperative evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stokes, John Whittemore; Wanderer, Jonathan Porter; McEvoy, Matthew David

    2016-01-01

    Preoperative assessment of functional capacity is necessary to direct decisions regarding cardiac evaluation and may help identify patients at high risk for perioperative complications. Patient self-triage regarding functional capacity could be useful for discerning which patients benefit from a clinician evaluation at a Preoperative Evaluation Center prior to the day of surgery. We evaluated the feasibility of preoperative, patient self-triage regarding functional capacity. Patients were recruited immediately prior to their preoperative evaluation. Study participants completed electronic versions of the Duke Activity Status Index (DASI) and the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement System (PROMIS)-Short Form 12a-Physical Function. DASI and PROMIS questionnaire responses were scored and evaluated for correlation with clinician assessments of functional capacity. Correlation was analyzed around the dichotomous outcome of evaluated the usability of the questionnaires. After IRB approval, 204 patients were enrolled and completed both DASI and PROMIS questionnaires. Clinicians assessed functional capacity at assessments assessments (Fisher's exact, two-tailed P value assessments and patient self-assessments of functional capacity. Further study is needed to determine if either patient self-triage by means of activity questionnaires or clinician evaluation is valid and reliable in the preoperative setting.

  8. Assessment of students’ health condition by indicators of adaptation potential, biological age and bio-energetic reserves of organism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O.V. Martyniuk

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: to assess students’ health condition by indicators of adaptation potential, biological age and express-assessment. Material: in the research 47 first and second year girl students participated, who belonged to main health group. Results: we distributed the girl students into three groups: 14.89% of them were included in group with “safe” health condition; 34.04% - in group of “third state”; 51.06% were related to group with “ dangerous” health condition. We established that dangerous level was characterized by energy potential of below middle and low level. It is accompanied by accelerated processes of organism’s age destructions and tension of regulation mechanisms. Conclusions: the received results permit to further develop and generalize the data of students’ health’s assessment by indicators of adaptation potentials, biological age and physical health’s condition.

  9. C-terminally truncated constitutively active androgen receptor variants and their biologic and clinical significance in castration-resistant prostate cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azoitei, Anca; Merseburger, Axel S; Godau, Beate; Hoda, M Raschid; Schmid, Evi; Cronauer, Marcus V

    2017-02-01

    A mechanism allowing castration resistant prostate cancer cells to escape the effects of conventional anti-hormonal treatments is the synthesis of constitutively active, C-terminally truncated androgen receptor (AR)-variants. Lacking the entire or vast parts of the ligand binding domain, the intended target of traditional endocrine therapies, these AR-variants (termed ARΔLBD) are insensitive to all traditional treatments including second generation compounds like abiraterone, enzalutamide or ARN-509. Although ARΔLBD are predominantly products of alternative splicing, they can also be products of nonsense mutations or proteolytic cleavage. In this review, we will discuss the etiology and function of c-terminally truncated AR-variants and their clinical significance as markers/targets for the treatment of castration resistant prostate cancer. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Clinical Significance of Umami Taste and Umami-Related Gene Expression Analysis for the Objective Assessment of Umami Taste Loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoji, Noriaki; Satoh-Ku Riwada, Shizuko; Sasano, Takashi

    2016-01-01

    Loss of umami taste sensation affects quality of life and causes weight loss and health problems, particularly in the elderly. We recently expanded the use of the filter paper disc method to include assessment of umami taste sensitivity, using monosodium glutamate as the test solution. This test showed high diagnostic performance for discriminating between normal taste function and disorders in sensation of the umami taste, according to established cut-off values. The test also revealed: (1) some elderly patients suffered from specific loss of umami taste sensation with preservation of the other four taste sensations (sweet, salty, sour, and bitter); (2) umami taste disorder caused a loss of appetite and decline in weight, resulting in poor health; (3) appetite, weight and overall health improved after appropriate treatment for umami taste disorder. Because of the subjective nature of the test, however, it may not be useful for patients who cannot express which taste sensation is induced by a tastant, such as those with dementia. Most recently, using tissue samples collected from the tongue by scraping the foliate papillae, we showed that evaluation of umami taste receptor gene expression may be clinically useful for the objective genetic diagnosis of umami taste disorders.

  11. Assessment of the significance of patent-derived information for the early identification of compound-target interaction hypotheses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Senger, Stefan

    2017-04-21

    Patents are an important source of information for effective decision making in drug discovery. Encouragingly, freely accessible patent-chemistry databases are now in the public domain. However, at present there is still a wide gap between relatively low coverage-high quality manually-curated data sources and high coverage data sources that use text mining and automated extraction of chemical structures. To secure much needed funding for further research and an improved infrastructure, hard evidence is required to demonstrate the significance of patent-derived information in drug discovery. Surprisingly little such evidence has been reported so far. To address this, the present study attempts to quantify the relevance of patents for formulating and substantiating hypotheses for compound-target interactions. A manually-curated set of 130 compound-target interaction pairs annotated with what are considered to be the earliest patent and publication has been produced. The analysis of this set revealed that in stark contrast to what has been reported for novel chemical structures, only about 10% of the compound-target interaction pairs could be found in publications in the scientific literature within one year of being reported in patents. The average delay across all interaction pairs is close to 4 years. In an attempt to benchmark current capabilities, it was also examined how much of the benefit of using patent-derived information can be retained when a bioannotated version of SureChEMBL is used as secondary source for the patent literature. Encouragingly, this approach found the patents in the annotated set for 72% of the compound-target interaction pairs. Similarly, the effect of using the bioactivity database ChEMBL as secondary source for the scientific literature was studied. Here, the publications from the annotated set were only found for 46% of the compound-target interaction pairs. Patent-derived information is a significant enabler for formulating compound

  12. Assessment of robustness and significance of climate change signals for an ensemble of distribution-based scaled climate projections

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Seaby, Lauren Paige; Refsgaard, J.C.; Sonnenborg, T.O.

    2013-01-01

    An ensemble of 11 regional climate model (RCM) projections are analysed for Denmark from a hydrological modelling inputs perspective. Two bias correction approaches are applied: a relatively simple monthly delta change (DC) method and a more complex daily distribution-based scaling (DBS) method....... Differences in the strength and direction of climate change signals are compared across models and between bias correction methods, the statistical significance of climate change is tested as it evolves over the 21st century, and the impact of choice of reference and change period lengths is analysed......, the DC approach is insufficient at recreating projected regimes while the DBS correction method can transfer changes in the mean as well as the variance, improving the characterisation of temporal dynamics as well as heavy precipitation events. Climate change signals in the near-future (2011...

  13. [Pre- and post-operative right ventricular functions in valvular heart diseases: the significance of noninvasive assessment].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uehara, T; Nishimura, T; Hayashida, K; Takamiya, M

    1987-12-01

    This investigation was undertaken to evaluate right ventricular function in valvular heart diseases by calculating right ventricular ejection fraction (RVEF) from first-pass radionuclide angiography (RNA). One hundred cases of valvular heart disease were examined by RNA, 93 of whom underwent cardiac catheterization and contrast left ventriculography, preoperatively. Fifty of the 100 cases were examined by RNA; 18 by cardiac catheterization post-operatively. The results were as follows: 1. In 49 cases of mitral valve disease, there was a correlation (r = -0.75) between pulmonary artery mean pressure (PAm) and RVEF. This suggested that afterload of left atrial pressure elevation induced a decrease in RVEF. 2. Although PAm did not increase so much in aortic valve disease, RVEF decreased in some cases, especially in those having massive aortic stenosis or regurgitation. In 22 cases of aortic regurgitation which had normal PAm and a left ventricular-aortic systolic pressure gradient less than 50 mmHg, there was a correlation (r = -0.69) between the RVEF and the left ventricular end-diastolic volume index (LVEDVI). 3. Although post-operative RVEF did not improve significantly in mitral valve disease, it increased significantly in the early post-operative period in aortic valve disease. Also, the increase in RVEF and the decrease in LVEDVI seemed to correlate closely in aortic valve disease. It was speculated that pre-operative decrease of RVEF is derived from a deformity of the RV caused by pressure from the enlarged or thickened LV, and that post-operative increase of RVEF is dependent upon a decrease of LV size and volume.

  14. Assessment of microbiological quality of sachet-packaged drinking water in Western Nigeria and its public health significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olaoye, O A; Onilude, A A

    2009-11-01

    To assess the microbiological quality of sachet-packaged drinking water in Western Nigeria and its impact on public health. Cross-sectional microbiological testing. Ninety-two sachet-packaged water samples were analysed for microbiological and metal qualities. Total bacterial and coliform counts were determined, and the presence of Escherichia coli, an important water quality indicator, was tested. The level of conformity of the water processors with the guidelines of Nigeria's quality regulatory agency was also determined. Varying levels of microbial contamination were recorded in samples from the different sampling locations. The total bacteria count ranged between 2.86 and 3.45log colony-forming units (cfu)/ml. The highest coliform count recorded was 1.62log cfu/ml. Faecal coliform E. coli was detected in one sample from Oke-Iho and one sample from Okaka, representing 2.2% of total samples. Lead and manganese were not found in any of the samples. However, iron was detected and the highest iron concentration (0.10mg/l) was detected in samples from Ikorodu. The bacteria that were identified from the water samples included E. coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Enterobacter aerogenes, Klebsiella sp., Proteus vulgaris, Alcaligenes faecalis, Bacillus cereus, Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus lactis, Aeromonas sp. and Micrococcus luteum. Many of the water processors did not comply with the guidelines of the quality regulatory agency. Some of the sachet-packaged samples of drinking water were of poor quality. The results indicate a need for Nigeria's quality regulatory agency to take appropriate measures in safeguarding public health.

  15. Assessment of the degree of asymmetry of pathological features in neurodegenerative diseases. What is the significance for brain banks?

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Andrew; Bodi, Istvan; Nolan, Matthew; Troakes, Claire; Al-Sarraj, Safa

    2015-10-01

    Brain banks allow researchers access to tissue from well-characterised neurodegenerative disease cases. Fixed tissue employed for diagnosis is often not appropriate for research and frozen tissue is therefore made available. Many brain banks use a protocol where half the brain is fixed and half frozen. Recently a study has shown that there can be asymmetry in protein deposition between the hemispheres especially with tau and TDP-43. We aimed to test this hypothesis by prospectively taking bilateral cortical blocks from 30 brains on arrival, and immunostaining to assess the degree of asymmetry. In 6 out 14 cases of AD (Alzheimer's Disease) (Modified Braak Stage V-VI), there was some asymmetrical staining for tau. In 2 cases, there was moderate discrepancy for tau staining between left and right calcarine cortices. However, careful analysis in both these cases revealed discrepancies in tau staining in adjacent regions even on the same side. The α-synuclein staining showed asymmetry in one case only, the Aβ showed only mild asymmetry in 3 cases of AD. The TDP-43 pathology appeared symmetrical in the 2 cases of frontotemporal lobar degeneration with motor neurone disease, but there was asymmetry noted when seen in conjunction with AD. In conclusion, there is the potential for asymmetrical pathology in neurodegenerative diseases and caution should be maintained when freezing half and fixing half of the brain in neurodegenerative diseases. Nevertheless, marked variability in staining can also be identified in adjacent cortical areas so there is no guarantee that an alternative strategy would be superior.

  16. Nontargeted stressful effects in normal human fibroblast cultures exposed to low fluences of high charge, high energy (HZE) particles: kinetics of biologic responses and significance of secondary radiations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonon, Géraldine; Groetz, Jean-Emmanuel; de Toledo, Sonia M; Howell, Roger W; Fromm, Michel; Azzam, Edouard I

    2013-04-01

    The induction of nontargeted stressful effects in cell populations exposed to low fluences of high charge (Z) and high energy (E) particles is relevant to estimates of the health risks of space radiation. We investigated the up-regulation of stress markers in confluent normal human fibroblast cultures exposed to 1,000 MeV/u iron ions [linear energy transfer (LET) ∼151 keV/μm] or 600 MeV/u silicon ions (LET ∼50 keV/μm) at mean absorbed doses as low as 0.2 cGy, wherein 1-3% of the cells were targeted through the nucleus by a primary particle. Within 24 h postirradiation, significant increases in the levels of phospho-TP53 (serine 15), p21(Waf1) (CDKN1A), HDM2, phospho-ERK1/2, protein carbonylation and lipid peroxidation were detected, which suggested participation in the stress response of cells not targeted by primary particles. This was supported by in situ studies that indicated greater increases in 53BP1 foci formation, a marker of DNA damage. than expected from the number of primary particle traversals. The effect was expressed as early as 15 min after exposure, peaked at 1 h and decreased by 24 h. A similar tendency occurred after exposure of the cell cultures to 0.2 cGy of 3.7 MeV α particles (LET ∼109 keV/μm) that targets ∼1.6% of nuclei, but not after 0.2 cGy from 290 MeV/u carbon ions (LET ∼13 keV/μm) by which, on average, ∼13% of the nuclei were hit, which highlights the importance of radiation quality in the induced effect. Simulations with the FLUKA multi-particle transport code revealed that fragmentation products, other than electrons, in cell cultures exposed to HZE particles comprise particles.

  17. Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance and Smoldering Multiple Myeloma: A review of the current understanding of epidemiology, biology, risk stratification and management of myeloma precursor disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agarwal, Amit; Ghobrial, Irene

    2012-01-01

    The term monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) was coined in 1978. The recent advances in our knowledge about MGUS and smoldering MM (SMM) have helped us better understand the pathogenesis of myeloma. It appears that myeloma evolves from a precursor state in almost all cases. We do not completely understand the multistep process from the precursor state to myeloma but studies including whole genome sequencing will continue to help in improving our understanding of this process. The process of transformation may not be linear acquisition of changes but rather a branched heterogeneous process. Clinical features that are prognostic of rapid transformation have been identified but no specific molecular markers have been identified. Even with recent advances, multiple myeloma remains an incurable disease in the vast majority and intervening at the precursor state provides a unique opportunity to alter the natural history of the disease. A limitation is that a vast majority of patients with precursor disease especially low risk MGUS will never progress to myeloma in their lifetime and treating these patients is not only unnecessary but may be potentially harmful. The challenge is to identify a subset of patients with the precursor state that would definitely progress to myeloma and in whom interventions will have a meaningful impact. As our understanding of the molecular and genetic processes improves, these studies will guide the selection of high-risk patients more appropriately and ultimately direct a tailored management strategy to either delay progression to symptomatic myeloma or even “cure” a person at this premalignant stage. PMID:23224402

  18. Dedicated Research Time During Surgery Residency Leads to a Significant Decline In Self-Assessed Clinical Aptitude and Surgical Skills.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grova, Monica M; Yang, Anthony D; Humphries, Misty D; Galante, Joseph M; Salcedo, Edgardo S

    The surgical community commonly perceives a decline in surgical and patient care skills among residents who take dedicated time away from clinical activity to engage in research. We hypothesize that residents perceive a decline in their skills because of dedicated research time. UC Davis Medical Center, Sacramento, CA, an institutional tertiary care center. General surgery residents and graduates from UC Davis general surgery residency training program, who had completed at least 1 year of research during their training. A total of 35 people were asked to complete the survey, and 19 people submitted a completed survey. Participants were invited to complete an online survey. Factors associated with the decline in skills following their research years were examined. All statistical analyses were performed with IBM SPSS Statistics software. A total of 19 current or former general surgery residents responded to the survey (54% response rate). Overall, 42% described their research as "basic science." Thirteen residents (68%) dedicated 1 year to research, while the remainder spent 2 or more years. Basic science researchers were significantly more likely to report a decrease in clinical judgment (75% vs. 22%, p = 0.013) as well as a decrease in patient care skills (63% vs. 0%, p = 0.002). Residents who dedicated at least 2 years to research were more likely to perceive a decline in overall aptitude and surgical skills (100% vs. 46%, p = 0.02), and a decline in patient care skills (67% vs. 8%, p = 0.007). Most residents who dedicate time for research perceive a decline in their overall clinical aptitude and surgical skills. This can have a dramatic effect on the confidence of these residents in caring for patients and leading a care team once they re-enter clinical training. Residents who engaged in 2 or more years of research were significantly more likely to perceive these problems. Further research should determine how to keep residents who are interested in academics

  19. Columellar-Frenulum Angle - A Significant Clinical Parameter in Assessing the Degree of Severity in Unilateral Cleft Lip.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vathulya, Madhubari; Jain, Pradeep

    2016-05-01

    The study was carried out to learn if the columellar-frenulum angle could be used as one of the most important anthropometric measurements to predict the clinical severity in unilateral cleft lip patients. This is a prospective case series conducted at Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, India. The study was based on the Thomson and Reinders criteria (1995), and various anthropometric measurements, including the columellar-frenulum angle, were measured. A total of 30 patients (21 boys and 9 girls) were included in the study. The ages of the children varied from 4 months to 15 years. The left side was affected in 18 patients, and 2 gave a significant positive family history. All the patients were subjected uniformly to Tennison's cleft lip repair. Patients with strictly unilateral complete cleft lip and palate were included in the study. Microform clefts, incomplete cleft lips, and bilateral clefts were excluded from the study. The data was analyzed using Pearson's correlation coefficient. The CF angle correlated negatively with the soft tissue defect of the cleft, cutaneous lip length, and vermilion lip length discrepancies from normal and soft tissue width just behind the alveolus. CF angle promises to offer a method by which prognosis of clefts can be predicted in terms of its severity in patients with unilateral cleft lip.

  20. The impact of molecular biology on assessment of water quality: advantages and limitations of current techniques

    OpenAIRE

    Saunders, J R; Saunders, V A

    1997-01-01

    The advent of molecular biology has had a dramatic impact on all aspects of biology, not least applied microbial ecology. Microbiological testing of water has traditionally depended largely on culture techniques. Growing understanding that only a small proportion of microbial species are culturable, and that many microorganisms may attain a viable but non-culturable state, has promoted the development of novel approaches to monitoring pathogens in the environment. This has been paralleled by ...

  1. Correlation between serum tryptase, mast cells positive to tryptase and microvascular density in colo-rectal cancer patients: possible biological-clinical significance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michele Ammendola

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Tryptase is a serin protease stored and released from mast cells (MCs that plays a role in tumour angiogenesis. In this study we aimed to evaluate serum tryptase levels in colo-rectal cancer (CRC patients before (STLBS and after (STLAS radical surgical resection. We also evaluated mast cell density positive to tryptase (MCDPT and microvascular density (MVD in primary tumour tissue. METHODS: A series of 61 patients with stage B and C CRC (according to the Astler and Coller staging system were selected. Serum blood samples were collected from patients one day before and one day after surgery. Tryptase levels were measured using the UniCAP Tryptase Fluoroenzymeimmunoassay (Pharmacia, Uppsala, Sweden. Tumour sections were immunostained with a primary anti-tryptase antibody (clone AA1; Dako, Glostrup, Denmark and an anti CD-34 antibody (QB-END 10; Bio-Optica Milan, Italy by means of immunohistochemistry and then evaluated by image analysis methods. RESULTS: The mean ± s.d. STLBS and STLAS was 5.63±2.61 µg/L, and 3.39±1.47 µg/L respectively and a significant difference between mean levels was found: p = 0.000 by t-test. The mean ± s.d. of MCDPT and MVD was 8.13±3.28 and 29.16±7.39 respectively. A strong correlation between STLBS and MVD (r = 0.83, p = 0.000; STLBS and MCDPT (r = 0.60, p = 0.003; and MCDPT and MVD (r = 0.73; p = 0.001 was found. CONCLUSION: Results demonstrated higher STLBS in CRC patients, indicating an involvement of MC tryptase in CRC angiogenesis. Data also indicated lower STLAS, suggesting the release of tryptase from tumour-infiltrating MCs. Serum tryptase levels may therefore play a role as a novel bio-marker predictive of response to radical surgery. In this context tryptase inhibitors such as Gabexate and Nafamostat Mesilate might be evaluated in adjuvant clinical trials as a new anti-angiogenic approach.

  2. Assessing the Soil Physiological Potential Using Pedo-Biological Diagnosis Under Minimum-Tillage System and Mineral Fertilization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lazar Bireescu

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The main objective of sustainable agriculture is the protection of environment and natural vegetal and soil resources. Accordingly, the objective of this research was to assess the impact of technological systems by minimum tillage on soil biological activity, using the Pedo-Biological Diagnosis of Soil Resources. Our research was conducted on haplic chernozem from Experimental Station of UASVM of Iasi, Romania, during the seasonal dynamic, to the soybean crop, on unfertilized and fertilized agrofond, using moderate mineral doses (N80P80 as average of 2009–2010 period, under minimum tillage (2x disk, paraplow, chisel compared to conventional (plugging at 20 cm and 30 cm. In the case of soil works with chisel and paraplow without return of furrow, the Pedo-Biological Diagnosis highlights an increase of soil physiological potential, in the both variants (unfertilized and fertilized, unlike the method of alternating the depth of plugging that proved to be ineffective.

  3. Assessing significance of peripheral blood indicators for differential diagnosis and prognosis of thrombotic complications in polycythemia vera and secondary erythrocytosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kostiukevych O.M.

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the study – determining of changes in peripheral blood (PB in patients with secondary erythrocytosis (SE and polycythemia vera (PV, detection of discriminatory parameters levels of PB indicators and analyzing of their operating characteristics for differentiation of erythrocytosis and predicting of thrombotic events in patients with PV. Materials and methods. The material for the study was the results of clinical trials of 210 patients with erythrocytosis who underwent differential diagnosis between PV and SE. Results and discussion. The optimal threshold for differential diagnosis of red blood cells content between PV and SE is >6.08•1012/ L, the diagnostic value of the marker equals to the level of a good diagnostic marker (AUC=0.82; 95% CI=0.77-0.87, p 57.5% with its capacity – 0.72 (0.66-0.78, p 8.9•109/L, and the boundary of marker is consistent with a good level of efficiency (AUC=0.79, 95% CI=0.72-0.84, p287•109 /L" to differentiate erythrocytosis is 0.90 (0.86-0.94, p 55%" and "WBC >12.3•109 /L", according to the AUC (AUC=0.65; 95% CI=0.52-0.79, p=0.021 and AUC=0.66; 95% CI=0.55-0.77, p=0.003, respectively, corresponds to the average power level. Conclusion. Hemoglobin has not confirmed its value for the differential diagnosis between PV and SE. Using other parameters of PB with the aim of differentiating PV and SE is rational, but their discriminatory power levels greatly depend on the group erythrocytosis. In our cohort were obtained the following most appropriate criteria for inclusion of patients in the group of patients with PV: "WBC >8.9•109/L", "red blood cells >6.08•1012/L" and "hematocrit >57.5%". The most significant marker of general clinical blood test to differentiate between PV and SE is "platelets >287•109/L". Hematocrit over 55% and WBC over 12.3•109/L are valuable prognostic markers of thrombosis in PV patients, but their use is appropriate only in a cohort of patients with PV without

  4. Parasites as biological tags to assess host population structure: Guidelines, recent genetic advances and comments on a holistic approach☆

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catalano, Sarah R.; Whittington, Ian D.; Donnellan, Stephen C.; Gillanders, Bronwyn M.

    2013-01-01

    We review the use of parasites as biological tags of marine fishes and cephalopods in host population structure studies. The majority of the work published has focused on marine fish and either single parasite species or more recently, whole parasite assemblages, as biological tags. There is representation of host organisms and parasites from a diverse range of taxonomic groups, although focus has primarily been on host species of commercial importance. In contrast, few studies have used parasites as tags to assess cephalopod population structure, even though records of parasites infecting cephalopods are well-documented. Squid species are the only cephalopod hosts for which parasites as biological tags have been applied, with anisakid nematode larvae and metacestodes being the parasite taxa most frequently used. Following a brief insight into the importance of accurate parasite identification, the population studies that have used parasites as biological tags for marine fishes and cephalopods are reviewed, including comments on the dicyemid mesozoans. The advancement of molecular genetic techniques is discussed in regards to the new ways parasite genetic data can be incorporated into population structure studies, alongside host population genetic analyses, followed by an update on the guidelines for selecting a parasite species as a reliable tag candidate. As multiple techniques and methods can be used to assess the population structure of marine organisms (e.g. artificial tags, phenotypic characters, biometrics, life history, genetics, otolith microchemistry and parasitological data), we conclude by commenting on a holistic approach to allow for a deeper insight into population structuring. PMID:25197624

  5. A biomonitoring study assessing the residual biological effects of pollution caused by the HAVEN wreck on marine organisms in the Ligurian Sea (Italy).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viarengo, A; Dondero, F; Pampanin, D M; Fabbri, R; Poggi, E; Malizia, M; Bolognesi, C; Perrone, E; Gollo, E; Cossa, G P

    2007-11-01

    Residual biological effects of the 1991 HAVEN oil spill off the Ligurian (Arenzano) coast were assessed in this study. Samples of the fish species Boops boops, Mullus barbatus, and Uranoscupus scaber were collected from two polluted sites near the HAVEN wreck and from an uncontaminated area. In addition to this, mussels were caged along the coast affected by the HAVEN disaster. The physiological status of fish and mussels was assessed using a battery of stress and exposure biomarkers. The PAH content of mussel and fish tissues was also analyzed. Significant biological responses were observed in lysosomal membrane stability, neutral lipid and lipofuscin accumulation and micronucleus frequency for mussels caged at two sites close to the HAVEN wreck. Chemical analyses indicated, however, that these effects are not caused by aromatic hydrocarbons. For this reason, we suggest that the aftermath of the HAVEN disaster contributes very little to coastal ecosystem pollution. This was also confirmed by the few biological effects observed in fish specimens (Boops boops) collected from surface waters. Nevertheless, it is important to point out that benthic fish displayed a stress syndrome potentially caused by aromatic hydrocarbons released from the oil tanker, as witnessed by an enhanced EROD activity and increased lipofuscin and neutral lipid lysosomal contents.

  6. Assessing the application of advanced oxidation processes, and their combination with biological treatment, to effluents from pulp and paper industry

    OpenAIRE

    Merayo Cuevas, Noemí; Hermosilla Redondo, Daphne; Blanco Jaen, Laura; Cortijo, Luis; Blanco Suárez, Ángeles

    2013-01-01

    The closure of water circuits within pulp and paper mills has resulted in a higher contamination load of the final mill effluent, which must consequently be further treated in many cases to meet the standards imposed by the legislation in force. Different treatment strategies based on advanced oxidation processes (ozonation and TiO2-photocatalysis), and their combination with biological treatment (MBR), are herein assessed for effluents of a recycled paper mill and a kraft pulp mill. Ozone tr...

  7. [Biological significance of edible mushrooms in mycoremediation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muszyńska, Bożena; Lazur, Jan; Dobosz, Konrad

    2017-01-01

    The importance of fungi in environmental remediation is due both to their ability to biotransformation of xenobiotics and to accumulate heavy metals. These processes depend primarily on the species, while the role of the species or systematic affiliation is less important, as is the strategy of symbiosis, for example: mycorrhiza, parasitism or saprophytism. The main factors controlling the absorption of metals by mushrooms are bioavailability and soil type, while xenobiotics are dependent on soil factors such as cation exchange capacity, pH, or organic matter content. The composition of the substrate is an important factor as there are large differences in the intake of individual substances. The composition, the amount of impurities present, but also the age of the mycelium that may be present in nature for many years or (compared) only for several months under culture conditions. It is a well-known fact that the content of mushroom fruiting bodies is correlated with the emission of pollutants.

  8. The biological significance of brain barrier mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saunders, Norman R; Habgood, Mark D; Møllgård, Kjeld

    2016-01-01

    Barrier mechanisms in the brain are important for its normal functioning and development. Stability of the brain's internal environment, particularly with respect to its ionic composition, is a prerequisite for the fundamental basis of its function, namely transmission of nerve impulses....... In addition, the appropriate and controlled supply of a wide range of nutrients such as glucose, amino acids, monocarboxylates, and vitamins is also essential for normal development and function. These are all cellular functions across the interfaces that separate the brain from the rest of the internal...... environment of the body. An essential morphological component of all but one of the barriers is the presence of specialized intercellular tight junctions between the cells comprising the interface: endothelial cells in the blood-brain barrier itself, cells of the arachnoid membrane, choroid plexus epithelial...

  9. The Biological Rhythms Interview of Assessment in Neuropsychiatry in patients with bipolar disorder: correlation with affective temperaments and schizotypy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ewa Dopierala

    Full Text Available Objective: To assess the relationship of biological rhythms, evaluated by the Biological Rhythms Interview of Assessment in Neuropsychiatry (BRIAN, with affective temperaments and schizotypy. Methods: The BRIAN assessment, along with the Temperament Evaluation of Memphis, Pisa, Paris, and San Diego-Autoquestionnaire (TEMPS-A and the Oxford-Liverpool Inventory for Feelings and Experiences (O-LIFE, was administered to 54 patients with remitted bipolar disorder (BD and 54 healthy control (HC subjects. Results: The TEMPS-A cyclothymic temperament correlated positively and the hyperthymic temperament correlated negatively with BRIAN scores in both the BD and HC groups, although the correlation was stronger in BD subjects. Depressive temperament was associated with BRIAN scores in BD but not in HC; conversely, the irritable temperament was associated with BRIAN scores in HC, but not in BD. Several positive correlations between BRIAN scores and the schizotypal dimensions of the O-LIFE were observed in both BD and HC subjects, especially with cognitive disorganization and less so with unusual experiences and impulsive nonconformity. A correlation with introversion/anhedonia was found only in BD subjects. Conclusion: Cyclothymic and depressive temperaments predispose to disturbances of biological rhythms in BD, while a hyperthymic temperament can be protective. Similar predispositions were also found for all schizotypal dimensions, mostly for cognitive disorganization.

  10. The Biological Rhythms Interview of Assessment in Neuropsychiatry in patients with bipolar disorder: correlation with affective temperaments and schizotypy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dopierala, Ewa; Chrobak, Adrian A; Kapczinski, Flavio; Michalak, Michal; Tereszko, Anna; Ferensztajn-Rochowiak, Ewa; Dudek, Dominika; Dembinska-Krajewska, Daria; Siwek, Marcin; Jaracz, Jan; Rybakowski, Janusz K

    2016-10-20

    To assess the relationship of biological rhythms, evaluated by the Biological Rhythms Interview of Assessment in Neuropsychiatry (BRIAN), with affective temperaments and schizotypy. The BRIAN assessment, along with the Temperament Evaluation of Memphis, Pisa, Paris, and San Diego-Autoquestionnaire (TEMPS-A) and the Oxford-Liverpool Inventory for Feelings and Experiences (O-LIFE), was administered to 54 patients with remitted bipolar disorder (BD) and 54 healthy control (HC) subjects. The TEMPS-A cyclothymic temperament correlated positively and the hyperthymic temperament correlated negatively with BRIAN scores in both the BD and HC groups, although the correlation was stronger in BD subjects. Depressive temperament was associated with BRIAN scores in BD but not in HC; conversely, the irritable temperament was associated with BRIAN scores in HC, but not in BD. Several positive correlations between BRIAN scores and the schizotypal dimensions of the O-LIFE were observed in both BD and HC subjects, especially with cognitive disorganization and less so with unusual experiences and impulsive nonconformity. A correlation with introversion/anhedonia was found only in BD subjects. Cyclothymic and depressive temperaments predispose to disturbances of biological rhythms in BD, while a hyperthymic temperament can be protective. Similar predispositions were also found for all schizotypal dimensions, mostly for cognitive disorganization.

  11. SYMBIOSIS: development, implementation, and assessment of a model curriculum across biology and mathematics at the introductory level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Depelteau, Audrey M; Joplin, Karl H; Govett, Aimee; Miller, Hugh A; Seier, Edith

    2010-01-01

    "It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power." Alan Cohen (Used by permission. All rights reserved. For more information on Alan Cohen's books and programs, see (www.alancohen.com.) With the support of the East Tennessee State University (ETSU) administration and a grant from Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the departments of Biological Sciences, Mathematics and Statistics, and Curriculum and Instruction have developed a biology-math integrated curriculum. An interdisciplinary faculty team, charged with teaching the 18 curriculum modules, designed this three-semester curriculum, known as SYMBIOSIS. This curriculum was piloted to two student cohorts during the developmental stage. The positive feedback and assessment results of this project have given us the foundation to implement the SYMBIOSIS curriculum as a replacement for the standard biology majors curriculum at the introductory level. This article addresses the history and development of the curriculum, previous assessment results and current assessment protocol, and the future of ETSU's approach to implementing the SYMBIOSIS curriculum.

  12. 75 FR 69396 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Arundo donax

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-11-12

    ... rules that are applicable to the public. Notices of hearings #0;and investigations, committee meetings... damaging insects to A. donax in its native range. The scale attacks the rhizome and developing underground... Arundo Scale, Rhizaspidiotus donacis (Hemiptera: Diaspididae), an Insect for Biological Control of Arundo...

  13. Soil biological indicators of soil health for a national soil health assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soil is one of our nation's most valuable resources that provides life-sustaining functions. Billions of organisms live belowground and perform critical soil processes to support plant, animal, and human health aboveground. By shifting our view of soils from an inert growing material to a biological...

  14. Formative Assessment and Increased Student Involvement Increase Grades in an Upper Secondary School Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Granbom, Martin

    2016-01-01

    This study shows that formative methods and increased student participation has a positive influence on learning measured as grades. The study was conducted during the course Biology A in a Swedish Upper Secondary School. The students constructed grade criteria and defined working methods and type of examination within a given topic, Gene…

  15. Assessment of Student Learning Associated with Tree Thinking in an Undergraduate Introductory Organismal Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, James J.; Cheruvelil, Kendra Spence; Auvenshine, Stacie

    2013-01-01

    Phylogenetic trees provide visual representations of ancestor-descendant relationships, a core concept of evolutionary theory. We introduced "tree thinking" into our introductory organismal biology course (freshman/sophomore majors) to help teach organismal diversity within an evolutionary framework. Our instructional strategy consisted…

  16. Participation in introductory biology laboratories: An integrated assessment based on surveys, behavioral observations, and qualitative interviews

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russell, Connie Adelle

    Scope and method of study. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of gender, major, and prior knowledge of and attitude toward biology on participation in introductory biology laboratories. Subjects for this study were 3,527 students enrolled in college-level introductory biology courses. During the study, three introductory courses were replaced with one mixed-majors course. The new course adopted a different pedagological approach from the previous courses in that an inquiry-based approach was used in lectures and laboratories. All subjects completed a survey that measured content knowledge using the NABT/NSTA High School Biology Examination Version 1990 and attitude using Russell and Hollander's Biology Attitude Scale. I used and discuss the merits of using ethological methods and data collection software, EthoScribeTM (Tima Scientific) to collect behavioral data from 145 students. I also evaluated participation using qualitative interviews of 30 students. I analyzed content knowledge and attitude data using ANOVA and Pearson correlation, and behavioral data using Contingency Table Analysis. I analyzed interviews following methods outlined by Rubin and Rubin. Findings. Course style and gender were the most useful variables in distinguishing differences among groups of students with regard to attitude, content knowledge, and participation in laboratories. Attitude toward biology and achievement measured by the surveys were found to be positively correlated; however, gender, major, class standing, course style and interactions between these variables also had effects on these variables. I found a positive association among attitude, achievement and participation in hands-on activities in laboratories. Differences in participation also were associated group type. In a traditional introductory biology course, females in single-gender groups, gender-equal, or groups in which females were the majority spent more time performing hands-on science

  17. An in vivo model to assess magnesium alloys and their biological effect on human bone marrow stromal cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshizawa, Sayuri; Chaya, Amy; Verdelis, Kostas; Bilodeau, Elizabeth A; Sfeir, Charles

    2015-12-01

    Magnesium (Mg) alloys have many unique qualities which make them ideal candidates for bone fixation devices, including biocompatibility and degradation in vivo. Despite a rise in Mg alloy production and research, there remains no standardized system to assess their degradation or biological effect on human stem cells in vivo. In this study, we developed a novel in vivo model to assess Mg alloys for craniofacial and orthopedic applications. Our model consists of a collagen sponge seeded with human bone marrow stromal cells (hBMSCs) around a central Mg alloy rod. These scaffolds were implanted subcutaneously in mice and analyzed after eight weeks. Alloy degradation and biological effect were determined by microcomputed tomography (microCT), histological staining, and immunohistochemistry (IHC). MicroCT showed greater volume loss for pure Mg compared to AZ31 after eight weeks in vivo. Histological analysis showed that hBMSCs were retained around the Mg implants after 8 weeks. Furthermore, immunohistochemistry showed the expression of dentin matrix protein 1 and osteopontin around both pure Mg and AZ31 with implanted hBMSCs. In addition, histological sections showed a thin mineral layer around all degrading alloys at the alloy-tissue interface. In conclusion, our data show that degrading pure Mg and AZ31 implants are cytocompatible and do not inhibit the osteogenic property of hBMSCs in vivo. These results demonstrate that this model can be used to efficiently assess the biological effect of corroding Mg alloys in vivo. Importantly, this model may be modified to accommodate additional cell types and clinical applications. Magnesium (Mg) alloys have been investigated as ideal candidates for bone fixation devices due to high biocompatibility and degradation in vivo, and there is a growing need of establishing an efficient in vivo material screening system. In this study, we assessed degradation rate and biological effect of Mg alloys by transplanting Mg alloy rod with

  18. Omics Meets Biology: Application to the Design and Preclinical Assessment of Antivenoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan J. Calvete

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Snakebite envenoming represents a neglected tropical disease that has a heavy public health impact worldwide, mostly affecting poor people involved in agricultural activities in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Oceania. A key issue that complicates the treatment of snakebite envenomings is the poor availability of the only validated treatment for this disease, antivenoms. Antivenoms can be an efficacious treatment for snakebite envenoming, provided they are safe, effective, affordable, accessible and administered appropriately. The shortage of antivenoms in various regions, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa and some parts of Asia, can be significantly alleviated by optimizing the use of current antivenoms and by the generation of novel polyspecific antivenoms having a wide spectrum of efficacy. Complementing preclinical testing of antivenom efficacy using in vivo and in vitro functional neutralization assays, developments in venomics and antivenomics are likely to revolutionize the design and preclinical assessment of antivenoms by being able to test new antivenom preparations and to predict their paraspecific neutralization to the level of species-specific toxins.

  19. Assessment of pollution in road runoff using a Bufo viridis biological assay

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dorchin, A., E-mail: adorchin@campus.haifa.ac.i [Department of Evolutionary and Environmental Biology, Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Haifa, Mount Carmel, Haifa 31905 (Israel); Shanas, U., E-mail: shanas@research.haifa.ac.i [Department of Evolutionary and Environmental Biology, Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Haifa, Mount Carmel, Haifa 31905 (Israel); Department of Biology, Faculty of Natural sciences, University of Haifa - Oranim, Tiv' on 36006 (Israel)

    2010-12-15

    Road runoff is a major source of environmental pollution, significantly threatening nearby aquatic habitats. Chemical analyses indicate high pollutant concentrations in the road's 'first flush', but bioassays are more advantageous for addressing the cumulative effects of the numerous pollutants within the runoff. We used Bufo viridis embryos and larvae to assess the toxicity of road runoff from two major highways in Israel. We show, for the first time, that exposure to midseason runoff not only has an adverse effect on growth and development rates of B. viridis larvae but can also lead to increased rates of morphological deformations. Seasonal first flushes, despite having higher metal concentrations, did not adversely affect the toad larvae, apparently due to a counter effect of organic matter that potentially served as a supplementary energy resource. Road runoff can be a major cause for a qualitative decrease in the quality of aquatic habitats threatening amphibians in Israel. - Highway runoff has detrimental effects on the development of B. viridis larvae.

  20. An integrated assessment of pollution and biological effects in flounder, mussels and sediment in the southern Baltic Sea coastal area.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dabrowska, Henryka; Kopko, Orest; Lehtonen, Kari K; Lang, Thomas; Waszak, Ilona; Balode, Maija; Strode, Evita

    2017-02-01

    Organic and metal contaminants and biological effects were investigated in flounder, mussels, and sediments in the southern Baltic Sea coastal area in order to assess environmental quality status in that area. Four sites were selected, including two within the Gulf of Gdańsk (GoG). In biota and sediment at each site, DDTs dominated over PCBs and PBDEs were the least abundant among organic contaminants. Their concentrations decreased progressively outward from GoG. Among metal contaminants, the levels of Hg, Pb, and Cd were elevated in GoG. Biomarkers in flounder, EROD activity and DNA SB, showed moderate positive correlations with organic and metal contaminants. In flounder, the integrated biomarker index (IBR/n) presented a spatial trend coherent with chemical pollution index (CPI), but there was no clear spatial correspondence between IBR/n and CPI in mussels nor between sediment toxicity index (STI) and sediment CPI. The integrated assessment of contaminant and biological effect data against available assessment criteria indicated that in biota, the contaminant assessment thresholds were most often exceeded by CB-118, heptachlor, PBDE, and Hg (in the GoG sediments by p,p'-DDT, Hg and Cd), while of the biological determinants, the threshold was breeched by AChE activity in mussels in GoG. Applying the ICES/OSPAR traffic-light approach showed that of the 50 parameters assessed at each site, there were 18% of determinants in the red color category in the two GoG sites and 8% of determinants in the two sites outside GoG, which indicated that none of the four investigated sites attained good environmental status (GES).

  1. Practice makes pretty good: assessment of primary literature reading abilities across multiple large-enrollment biology laboratory courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Brian K; Kadandale, Pavan; He, Wenliang; Murata, Paige M N; Latif, Yama; Warschauer, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Primary literature is essential for scientific communication and is commonly utilized in undergraduate biology education. Despite this, there is often little time spent training our students how to critically analyze a paper. To address this, we introduced a primary literature module in multiple upper-division laboratory courses. In this module, instructors conduct classroom discussions that dissect a paper as researchers do. While previous work has identified classroom interventions that improve primary literature comprehension within a single course, our goal was to determine whether including a scientific paper module in our classes could produce long-term benefits. On the basis of performance in an assessment exam, we found that our module resulted in longitudinal gains, including increased comprehension and critical-thinking abilities in subsequent lab courses. These learning gains were specific to courses utilizing our module, as no longitudinal gains were seen in students who had taken other upper-division labs that lacked extensive primary literature discussion. In addition, we assessed whether performance on our assessment correlated with a variety of factors, including grade point average, course performance, research background, and self-reported confidence in understanding of the article. Furthermore, all of the study conclusions are independent of biology disciplines, as we observe similar trends within each course. © 2014 B. K. Sato et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2014 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  2. A "weight of evidence" approach for the integration of environmental "triad" data to assess ecological risk and biological vulnerability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dagnino, Alessandro; Sforzini, Susanna; Dondero, Francesco; Fenoglio, Stefano; Bona, Elisa; Jensen, John; Viarengo, Aldo

    2008-07-01

    A new Expert Decision Support System (EDSS) that can integrate Triad data for assessing environmental risk and biological vulnerability at contaminated sites has been developed. Starting with ecosystem relevance, the EDSS assigns different weights to the results obtained from Triad disciplines. The following parameters have been employed: 1) chemical soil analyses (revealing the presence of potentially dangerous substances), 2) ecotoxicological bioassays (utilizing classical endpoints such as survival and reproduction rates), 3) biomarkers (showing sublethal pollutant effects), and 4) ecological parameters (assessing changes in community structure and functions). For each Triad discipline, the EDSS compares the data obtained at the studied field sites with reference values and calculates different 0-1 indexes (e.g., Chemical Risk Index, Ecotoxicological Risk Index, and Ecological Risk Index). The EDSS output consists of 3 indexes: 1) Environmental Risk index (EnvRI), quantifying the levels of biological damage at population-community level, 2) Biological Vulnerability Index (BVI), assessing the potential threats to biological equilibriums, and 3) Genotoxicity Index (GTI), screening genotoxicity effects. The EDSS has been applied in the integration of a battery of Triad data obtained during the European Union-funded Life Intervention in the Fraschetta Area (LINFA) project, which has been carried out in order to estimate the potential risk from soils of a highly anthropized area (Alessandria, Italy) mainly impacted by deposition of atmospheric pollutants. Results obtained during 4 seasonal sampling campaigns (2004-2005) show maximum values of EnvRI in sites A and B (characterized by industrial releases) and lower levels in site D (affected by vehicular traffic emissions). All 3 potentially polluted sites have shown high levels of BVI and GTI, suggesting a general change from reference conditions (site C).

  3. Assessing environmental quality status by integrating chemical and biological effect data: The Cartagena coastal zone as a case.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-Gómez, Concepción; Fernández, Beatriz; Robinson, Craig D; Campillo, J Antonio; León, Víctor M; Benedicto, José; Hylland, Ketil; Vethaak, A Dick

    2017-03-01

    Cartagena coastal zone (W Mediterranean) was chosen for a practical case study to investigate the suitability of an integrated indicator framework for marine monitoring and assessment of chemicals and their effects, which was developed by ICES and OSPAR. Red mullet (Mullus barbatus) and the Mediterranean mussel (Mytilus galloprovincialis) were selected as target species. Concentrations of contaminants in sediment and biota, and contaminant-related biomarkers were analysed. To assess environmental quality in the Cartagena coastal zone with respect to chemical pollution, data were assessed using available assessment criteria, and then integrated for different environmental matrices. A qualitative scoring method was used to rank the overall assessments into selected categories and to evaluate the confidence level of the final integrated assessment. The ICES/OSPAR integrated assessment framework, originally designed for the North Atlantic, was found to be applicable for Mediterranean species and environmental matrices. Further development of assessment criteria of chemical and biological parameters in sediments and target species from the Mediterranean will, however, be required before this framework can be fully applied for determining Good Environmental Status (GES) of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive in these regions. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Assessing the Biological Safety Profession's Evaluation and Control of Risks Associated with the Field Collection of Potentially Infectious Specimens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patlovich, Scott J; Emery, Robert J; Whitehead, Lawrence W; Brown, Eric L; Flores, Rene

    2015-03-01

    Because the origins of the biological safety profession are rooted in the control and prevention of laboratory-associated infections, the vocation focuses primarily on the safe handling of specimens within the laboratory. But in many cases, the specimens and samples handled in the lab are originally collected in the field where a broader set of possible exposure considerations may be present, each with varying degrees of controllability. The failure to adequately control the risks associated with collecting biological specimens in the field may result in illness or injury, and could have a direct impact on laboratory safety, if infectious specimens were packaged or transported inappropriately, for example. This study developed a web-based survey distributed to practicing biological safety professionals to determine the prevalence of and extent to which biological safety programs consider and evaluate field collection activities. In cases where such issues were considered, the data collected characterize the types of controls and methods of oversight at the institutional level that are employed. Sixty-one percent (61%) of the survey respondents indicated that research involving the field collection of biological specimens is conducted at their institutions. A majority (79%) of these field collection activities occur at academic institutions. Twenty-seven percent (27%) of respondents indicated that their safety committees do not consider issues related to biological specimens collected in the field, and only 25% with an oversight committee charged to review field collection protocols have generated a field research-specific risk assessment form to facilitate the assembly of pertinent information for a project risk assessment review. The results also indicated that most biosafety professionals (73% overall; 71% from institutions conducting field collection activities) have not been formally trained on the topic, but many (64% overall; 87% from institutions conducting

  5. Increasing URM Undergraduate Student Success through Assessment-Driven Interventions: A Multiyear Study Using Freshman-Level General Biology as a Model System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carmichael, Mary C.; St. Clair, Candace; Edwards, Andrea M.; Barrett, Peter; McFerrin, Harris; Davenport, Ian; Awad, Mohamed; Kundu, Anup; Ireland, Shubha Kale

    2016-01-01

    Xavier University of Louisiana leads the nation in awarding BS degrees in the biological sciences to African-American students. In this multiyear study with ∼5500 participants, data-driven interventions were adopted to improve student academic performance in a freshman-level general biology course. The three hour-long exams were common and administered concurrently to all students. New exam questions were developed using Bloom’s taxonomy, and exam results were analyzed statistically with validated assessment tools. All but the comprehensive final exam were returned to students for self-evaluation and remediation. Among other approaches, course rigor was monitored by using an identical set of 60 questions on the final exam across 10 semesters. Analysis of the identical sets of 60 final exam questions revealed that overall averages increased from 72.9% (2010) to 83.5% (2015). Regression analysis demonstrated a statistically significant correlation between high-risk students and their averages on the 60 questions. Additional analysis demonstrated statistically significant improvements for at least one letter grade from midterm to final and a 20% increase in the course pass rates over time, also for the high-risk population. These results support the hypothesis that our data-driven interventions and assessment techniques are successful in improving student retention, particularly for our academically at-risk students. PMID:27543637

  6. [Biological assessment of sintered titanium alloy for dental crown and bridge by means of slip casting].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chai, F; Liang, X; Chao, Y; Liao, Y; Han, X

    2001-06-01

    To evaluate the biological safety of sintered titanium alloy for dental crown and bridge, and provide a sound scientific basis for dental clinical practice. A series of tests, including acute toxicity test, cytotoxity test (agar overlay), sensitization test, oral mucous membrane irritation test, haemolysis test and micronucleus test were conducted to examine the dental crown/bridge-used titanium alloy which is processed with vacuum-sintered powder metallurgy. The haemolysis rate of this material was 2.21% (less than 5%), an index of good blood compatibility. Cytotoxic effect was not observed in cell culture, nor was toxic effect observed in mouse toxicity test. Local mucous membrane irritation reaction was not found. No potential mutagenicity of this material was noted. Dental crown/bridge-used titanium alloy material is of reliable was noted biological safety in dental clinical application.

  7. Assessment of biological age and "quantity of health" of judoists-veterans at the exit stage from elite sport

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Volodymyr Perebeynos

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: the assessment of biological age and "quantity of health" of judoists-veterans that allows estimating the level of functionality of their organism at the exit stage from elite sport and to construct correctly their training and competitive processes. Material & Methods: the systemic-functional approach is applied. The biological age and "quantity of health" of judoists-veterans decided with the help of tests. The group of 28 men and 19 women – judoists-veterans is tested for this purpose. Results: it is proved that the research of biological age of veterans of judo at the exit stage from elite sport, continuing systematic trainings, is of great importance for sports medicine, physical therapy, gerontology, neurology, and also for professional selection in respect of age rationing of intellectual and exercise stresses, assessment of influence of the motive mode on the rate of aging; the carried-out tests allowed to estimate "quantity of health" of judoists-veterans, giving the idea of the level of functionality of their organism. Conclusions: it is proved that judo classes, the correct and positive image of life positively influence health of judoists-veterans.

  8. Effects of organic amendment on soil quality as assessed by biological indicators

    OpenAIRE

    Sultana, Salma

    2011-01-01

    Soil quality decline is one of the most predominant effect deriving from human activities. In particular, intensive agricultural management can affect negatively soils, principally due to rapid depletion of soil organic matter, that affects, in turn, soil physical, chemical and biological properties. The declining trend of soil quality coupled with mismanagement of agricultural production is pose a serious threat to sustainability of intensive agriculture. Sustainable intensive agriculture is...

  9. Step by Step: Biology Undergraduates' Problem-Solving Procedures during Multiple-Choice Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prevost, Luanna B; Lemons, Paula P

    2016-01-01

    This study uses the theoretical framework of domain-specific problem solving to explore the procedures students use to solve multiple-choice problems about biology concepts. We designed several multiple-choice problems and administered them on four exams. We trained students to produce written descriptions of how they solved the problem, and this allowed us to systematically investigate their problem-solving procedures. We identified a range of procedures and organized them as domain general, domain specific, or hybrid. We also identified domain-general and domain-specific errors made by students during problem solving. We found that students use domain-general and hybrid procedures more frequently when solving lower-order problems than higher-order problems, while they use domain-specific procedures more frequently when solving higher-order problems. Additionally, the more domain-specific procedures students used, the higher the likelihood that they would answer the problem correctly, up to five procedures. However, if students used just one domain-general procedure, they were as likely to answer the problem correctly as if they had used two to five domain-general procedures. Our findings provide a categorization scheme and framework for additional research on biology problem solving and suggest several important implications for researchers and instructors. © 2016 L. B. Prevost and P. P. Lemons. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  10. Biological assessment of the advanced turbine design at Wanapum Dam, 2005

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dauble, D. D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Deng, Z. D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Richmond, M. C. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Moursund, R. A. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Carlson, T. J. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Rakowski, C. L. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Duncan, J. P. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2007-08-01

    Three studies were conducted to evaluate the biological performance of an advanced design turbine installed at Unit 8 of Wanapum Dam on the Columbia River in 2005 versus a conventional Kaplan turbine, Unit 9. The studies included an evaluation of blade-strike using deterministic and probabilistic models, integrated analysis of the response of the Sensor Fish to sever hydraulic events within the turbine system, and a novel dye technique to measure injury to juvenile salmonids in the field.

  11. Preparing Biology Graduate Teaching Assistants for Their Roles as Instructors: An Assessment of Institutional Approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schussler, Elisabeth E; Read, Quentin; Marbach-Ad, Gili; Miller, Kristen; Ferzli, Miriam

    2015-01-01

    The inconsistency of professional development (PD) in teaching for graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) is a widespread problem in higher education. Although GTAs serve an important role in retention of undergraduate science majors and in promotion of scientific literacy in nonmajors, they often lack preparation and ongoing support for teaching. Given the recent national focus on instructional quality in introductory courses, our goal was to use an online survey to identify current practices of teaching PD for biology GTAs and compare these results with the last national survey on this topic. In responses from 71 participant institutions, 96% reported some mandatory teaching preparation for biology GTAs; however, 52% of these programs required 10 or fewer hours per year. Respondents wanted to change their programs to include more pedagogical information and teaching observations with feedback to their GTAs. Programmatic self-ratings of satisfaction with GTA PD were positively correlated with the number of topics discussed during PD. Although more schools are requiring GTA PD for teaching compared with the last national survey, the lack of program breadth at many schools warrants a national conversation with regard to recent calls for improving undergraduate instruction. © 2015 E. E. Schussler et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2015 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  12. Decoupling physical from biological processes to assess the impact of viruses on a mesoscale algal bloom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehahn, Yoav; Koren, Ilan; Schatz, Daniella; Frada, Miguel; Sheyn, Uri; Boss, Emmanuel; Efrati, Shai; Rudich, Yinon; Trainic, Miri; Sharoni, Shlomit; Laber, Christian; DiTullio, Giacomo R; Coolen, Marco J L; Martins, Ana Maria; Van Mooy, Benjamin A S; Bidle, Kay D; Vardi, Assaf

    2014-09-08

    Phytoplankton blooms are ephemeral events of exceptionally high primary productivity that regulate the flux of carbon across marine food webs [1-3]. Quantification of bloom turnover [4] is limited by a fundamental difficulty to decouple between physical and biological processes as observed by ocean color satellite data. This limitation hinders the quantification of bloom demise and its regulation by biological processes [5, 6], which has important consequences on the efficiency of the biological pump of carbon to the deep ocean [7-9]. Here, we address this challenge and quantify algal blooms' turnover using a combination of satellite and in situ data, which allows identification of a relatively stable oceanic patch that is subject to little mixing with its surroundings. Using a newly developed multisatellite Lagrangian diagnostic, we decouple the contributions of physical and biological processes, allowing quantification of a complete life cycle of a mesoscale (∼10-100 km) bloom of coccolithophores in the North Atlantic, from exponential growth to its rapid demise. We estimate the amount of organic carbon produced during the bloom to be in the order of 24,000 tons, of which two-thirds were turned over within 1 week. Complimentary in situ measurements of the same patch area revealed high levels of specific viruses infecting coccolithophore cells, therefore pointing at the importance of viral infection as a possible mortality agent. Application of the newly developed satellite-based approaches opens the way for large-scale quantification of the impact of diverse environmental stresses on the fate of phytoplankton blooms and derived carbon in the ocean. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Sensor Fusion and Autonomy as a Powerful Combination for Biological Assessment in the Marine Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark A. Moline

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The ocean environment and the physical and biological processes that govern dynamics are complex. Sampling the ocean to better understand these processes is difficult given the temporal and spatial domains and sampling tools available. Biological systems are especially difficult as organisms possess behavior, operate at horizontal scales smaller than traditional shipboard sampling allows, and are often disturbed by the sampling platforms themselves. Sensors that measure biological processes have also generally not kept pace with the development of physical counterparts as their requirements are as complex as the target organisms. Here, we attempt to address this challenge by advocating the need for sensor-platform combinations to integrate and process data in real-time and develop data products that are useful in increasing sampling efficiencies. Too often, the data of interest is only garnered after post-processing after a sampling effort and the opportunity to use that information to guide sampling is lost. Here we demonstrate a new autonomous platform, where data are collected, analyzed, and data products are output in real-time to inform autonomous decision-making. This integrated capability allows for enhanced and informed sampling towards improving our understanding of the marine environment.

  14. Ethyl carbamate: analytical methodology, occurrence, formation, biological activity and risk assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmerli, B; Schlatter, J

    1991-01-01

    Ethyl carbamate (EC) is a genotoxic compound in vitro and in vivo, it binds covalently to DNA and is an animal carcinogen. Today, EC is mainly found as a natural trace constituent in different alcoholic beverages and in fermented food items. Data on analytical methodology and the levels of EC in different food items are summarized and the daily burden of humans is estimated. Under normal dietary habits excluding alcoholic beverages, the unavoidable daily intake is 10-20 ng/kg b.w. On the basis of the evaluation of all toxicity data and its mode of action a conventional risk assessment of EC indicates that this level represents a negligible lifetime cancer risk (less than 0.0001%). Individual habits may greatly enhance the risk. Regular drinking of table wine (500 ml/day) would increase the risk up to 5 times, regular drinking of stone-fruit distillates (20-40 ml/day) would raise the calculated hypothetical tumor risk to near 0.01%. Human exposure to carcinogenic compounds should be as low as reasonably achievable. In order to take reliable measures to reduce EC levels in beverages and foods, it is crucial to know the mode of its formation. For its natural formation the presence of ethanol is absolutely required. In stone-fruit distillates hydrogen cyanide together with photochemically active substances are crucial to form EC. The main part of EC is formed after the distillation involving photochemical reactions. In wine (and probably bread) significant EC formation seems to depend on heat treatment. While in distillates hydrogen cyanide is the most important single precursor, in wine different carbamyl compounds, mainly urea, seem to be involved in EC formation. Despite this apparent difference a common EC formation pathway is discussed for all alcoholic beverages by assuming cyanic-/isocyanic acid as an important ultimate reactant with ethanol. Some ideas are presented as to the possible course of future work.

  15. Environmental assessment of nutrient recycling from biological pig slurry treatment--impact of fertilizer substitution and field emissions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brockmann, Doris; Hanhoun, Mary; Négri, Ophélie; Hélias, Arnaud

    2014-07-01

    Pig slurry treatment is an important means in reducing nitrogen loads applied to farmland. Solid phase separation prior to biological treatment further allows for recovering phosphorus with the solid phase. The organic residues from the pig slurry treatment can be applied as organic fertilizers to farmland replacing mineral fertilizers. The environmental impacts of nutrient recycling from aerobic, biological pig slurry treatment were evaluated applying the life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology. LCA results revealed that direct field emissions from organic fertilizer application and the amount of avoided mineral fertilizers dominated the environmental impacts. A modified plant available nitrogen calculation (PAN) was introduced taking into account calculated nitrogen emissions from organic fertilizer application. Additionally, an equation for calculating the quantity of avoided mineral fertilizers based on the modified PAN calculation was proposed, which accounted for nitrogen emissions from mineral fertilizer application. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Assessing Student Understanding of the "New Biology": Development and Evaluation of a Criterion-Referenced Genomics and Bioinformatics Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Chad Edward

    Over the past decade, hundreds of studies have introduced genomics and bioinformatics (GB) curricula and laboratory activities at the undergraduate level. While these publications have facilitated the teaching and learning of cutting-edge content, there has yet to be an evaluation of these assessment tools to determine if they are meeting the quality control benchmarks set forth by the educational research community. An analysis of these assessment tools indicated that valid and reliable inferences about student learning. To remedy this situation the development of a robust GB assessment aligned with the quality control benchmarks was undertaken in order to ensure evidence-based evaluation of student learning outcomes. Content validity is a central piece of construct validity, and it must be used to guide instrument and item development. This study reports on: (1) the correspondence of content validity evidence gathered from independent sources; (2) the process of item development using this evidence; (3) the results from a pilot administration of the assessment; (4) the subsequent modification of the assessment based on the pilot administration results and; (5) the results from the second administration of the assessment. Twenty-nine different subtopics within GB (Appendix B: Genomics and Bioinformatics Expert Survey) were developed based on preliminary GB textbook analyses. These subtopics were analyzed using two methods designed to gather content validity evidence: (1) a survey of GB experts (n=61) and (2) a detailed content analyses of GB textbooks (n=6). By including only the subtopics that were shown to have robust support across these sources, 22 GB subtopics were established for inclusion in the assessment. An expert panel subsequently developed, evaluated, and revised two multiple-choice items to align with each of the 22 subtopics, producing a final item pool of 44 items. These items were piloted with student samples of varying content exposure levels

  17. The Development and Application of Affective Assessment in an Upper-Level Cell Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kitchen, Elizabeth; Reeve, Suzanne; Bell, John D.; Sudweeks, Richard R.; Bradshaw, William S.

    2007-01-01

    This study exemplifies how faculty members can develop instruments to assess affective responses of students to the specific features of the courses they teach. Means for assessing three types of affective responses are demonstrated: (a) student attitudes towards courses with differing instructional objectives and methodologies, (b) student…

  18. Development of a Particle Counting Method for Assessing the Biological Protection Factor of Respirators

    Science.gov (United States)

    2006-11-01

    biological protection. The test method uses a polydisperse corn oil aerosol challenge with a mass median aerodynamic diameter ( MMAD ) of 0.4 to 0.6...the MMAD of the corn oil aerosol challenge used in the standard military PF test protocol, it was used as the initial basis for comparison. The 5.0...the MMAD of the corn oil aerosol challenge used in the standard military PF test protocol. Each data set included a 0.6, 1.2, and 2.3 jim log PF

  19. Biological functioning of PAH-polluted and thermal desorption-treated soils assessed by fauna and microbial bioindicators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cébron, Aurélie; Cortet, Jérôme; Criquet, Stéven; Biaz, Asmaa; Calvert, Virgile; Caupert, Cécile; Pernin, Céline; Leyval, Corinne

    2011-11-01

    A large number of soil bioindicators were used to assess biological diversity and activity in soil polluted with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and the same soil after thermal desorption (TD) treatment. Abundance and biodiversity of bacteria, fungi, protozoa, nematodes and microarthropods, as well as functional parameters such as enzymatic activities and soil respiration, were assessed during a two year period of in situ monitoring. We investigated the influence of vegetation (spontaneous vegetation and Medicago sativa) and TD treatment on biological functioning. Multivariate analysis was performed to analyze the whole data set. A principal response curve (PRC) technique was used to evaluate the different treatments (various vegetation and contaminated vs. TD soil) contrasted with control (bare) soil over time. Our results indicated the value of using a number of complementary bioindicators, describing both diversity and functions, to assess the influence of vegetation on soil and discriminate polluted from thermal desorption (TD)-treated soil. Plants had an influence on the abundance and activity of all organisms examined in our study, favoring the whole trophic chain development. However, although TD-treated soil had a high abundance and diversity of microorganisms and fauna, enzymatic activities were weak because of the strong physical and chemical modifications of this soil. Copyright © 2011 Institut Pasteur. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  20. SYMBIOSIS: Development, Implementation, and Assessment of a Model Curriculum across Biology and Mathematics at the Introductory Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joplin, Karl H.; Govett, Aimee; Miller, Hugh A.; Seier, Edith

    2010-01-01

    “It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power.”Alan Cohen (Used by permission. All rights reserved. For more information on Alan Cohen's books and programs, see (www.alancohen.com.) With the support of the East Tennessee State University (ETSU) administration and a grant from Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the departments of Biological Sciences, Mathematics and Statistics, and Curriculum and Instruction have developed a biology–math integrated curriculum. An interdisciplinary faculty team, charged with teaching the 18 curriculum modules, designed this three-semester curriculum, known as SYMBIOSIS. This curriculum was piloted to two student cohorts during the developmental stage. The positive feedback and assessment results of this project have given us the foundation to implement the SYMBIOSIS curriculum as a replacement for the standard biology majors curriculum at the introductory level. This article addresses the history and development of the curriculum, previous assessment results and current assessment protocol, and the future of ETSU's approach to implementing the SYMBIOSIS curriculum. PMID:20810967

  1. The impact of biology on risk assessment -- Workshop of the National Research Council`s board on radiation effects research. Meeting report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fry, R.J.M. [Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States); Grosovsky, A. [Univ. of California, Riverside, CA (United States); Hanawalt, P.C. [Stanford Univ., CA (United States). Dept. of Biological Sciences; Jostes, R.F. [National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC (United States). Board on Radiation Effects Research; Little, J.B. [Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA (United States). Dept. of Cancer Biology; Morgan, W.F. [Univ. of California, San Francisco, CA (United States). Dept. of Radiation Oncology; Oleinick, N.L. [Case Western Reserve Univ., Cleveland, OH (United States); Ullrich, R.L. [Univ. of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX (United States). Dept. of Radiation Therapy

    1997-12-31

    The linear, nonthreshold extrapolation from a dose-response relationship for ionizing radiation derived at higher doses to doses for which regulatory standards are proposed is being challenged by some scientists and defended by others. It appears that the risks associated with exposures to doses of interest are below the risks that can be measured with epidemiologic studies. Therefore, many have looked to biology to provide information relevant to risk assessment. The workshop reported here, ``The Impact of biology on Risk Assessment,`` was planned to address the need for further information by bringing together scientists who have been working in key fields of biology and others who have been contemplating the issues associated specifically with this question. The goals of the workshop were to summarize and review the status of the relevant biology, to determine how the reported biologic data might influence risk assessment, and to identify subjects on which more data is needed.

  2. Hair for a long-term biological indicator tissue for assessing the strontium nutritional status of men and women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prejac, J; Višnjević, V; Skalny, A A; Grabeklis, A R; Mimica, N; Momčilović, B

    2017-07-01

    Strontium (Sr) is a trace element that closely resembles calcium metabolism. At the present time there is no available long-term biological indicator tissue for assessing the human Sr nutritional status. Here we have presented a novel concept on how to assess the Sr nutritional status by studying the frequency distribution properties of hair Sr ((Sr)H) concentration. In this prospective, observational, cross-sectional, and exploratory epidemiological study, we analyzed (Sr)H in 311 apparently healthy adult Croatians (123 men, 188 women). Hair strontium was analyzed by the ICP-MS. The natural frequency distribution of (Sr)H followed the Power law, so that the data were analyzed by fitting the logistic bioassay sigmoid curve (ogive) of median derivatives. Women tend to accumulate three and a half time more (Sr)H than men (median men 867ngg(-1) vs. median women 3120ngg(-1)). The normal (adequate) linear physiological response range of the sigmoid curve was 351-3489ngg(-1) for men and 846-8457ngg(-1) for women. Values below that linear range are considered to indicate deficient Sr nutritional status, whereas values above that linear range indicate excessive strontium exposure. Hair, as a long-term, and whole blood as a short-term biological indicator tissues were not commensurable entities. Similarly, (Sr)H accumulation was not age dependent in either men or women. Hair strontium is a reliable long-term biological indicator tissue for assessing the strontium nutritional status. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  3. Environmental Assessment and Final Finding of No Significant Impact for Lantirn Village & Camera I Site Upgrades Fort Wainwright Yukon Training Area Fort Wainwright, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-08-01

    characteristics such as microclimate , soil temperature , and moisture regimes. which in turn influence the type of vegetation that will be found there...equipment at existing facilities located in uplands. Approximately 0.63 acres of vegetation and I 0 cubic yards of soils would be disturbed with the...Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Actions That Influence 5 This Assessment 1.5 Project Scoping/Significant Issues 5 1.6 Federal and State Permits or

  4. Preparing Biology Graduate Teaching Assistants for Their Roles as Instructors: An Assessment of Institutional Approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schussler, Elisabeth E.; Read, Quentin; Marbach-Ad, Gili; Miller, Kristen; Ferzli, Miriam

    2015-01-01

    The inconsistency of professional development (PD) in teaching for graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) is a widespread problem in higher education. Although GTAs serve an important role in retention of undergraduate science majors and in promotion of scientific literacy in nonmajors, they often lack preparation and ongoing support for teaching. Given the recent national focus on instructional quality in introductory courses, our goal was to use an online survey to identify current practices of teaching PD for biology GTAs and compare these results with the last national survey on this topic. In responses from 71 participant institutions, 96% reported some mandatory teaching preparation for biology GTAs; however, 52% of these programs required 10 or fewer hours per year. Respondents wanted to change their programs to include more pedagogical information and teaching observations with feedback to their GTAs. Programmatic self-ratings of satisfaction with GTA PD were positively correlated with the number of topics discussed during PD. Although more schools are requiring GTA PD for teaching compared with the last national survey, the lack of program breadth at many schools warrants a national conversation with regard to recent calls for improving undergraduate instruction. PMID:26231562

  5. Integrated Ecological River Health Assessments, Based on Water Chemistry, Physical Habitat Quality and Biological Integrity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji Yoon Kim

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available This study evaluated integrative river ecosystem health using stressor-based models of physical habitat health, chemical water health, and biological health of fish and identified multiple-stressor indicators influencing the ecosystem health. Integrated health responses (IHRs, based on star-plot approach, were calculated from qualitative habitat evaluation index (QHEI, nutrient pollution index (NPI, and index of biological integrity (IBI in four different longitudinal regions (Groups I–IV. For the calculations of IHRs values, multi-metric QHEI, NPI, and IBI models were developed and their criteria for the diagnosis of the health were determined. The longitudinal patterns of the river were analyzed by a self-organizing map (SOM model and the key major stressors in the river were identified by principal component analysis (PCA. Our model scores of integrated health responses (IHRs suggested that mid-stream and downstream regions were impaired, and the key stressors were closely associated with nutrient enrichment (N and P and organic matter pollutions from domestic wastewater disposal plants and urban sewage. This modeling approach of IHRs may be used as an effective tool for evaluations of integrative ecological river health..

  6. Comparative assessment of biologics in treatment of psoriasis: drug design and clinical effectiveness of ustekinumab

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ignacio Garcia-Valladares

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Ignacio Garcia-Valladares, Raquel Cuchacovich, Luis R EspinozaSection of Rheumatology, Department of Internal Medicine, LSU Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, LA, USAAbstract: The development of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis is a multistep process that leads to chronic or recurrent inflammation. Recent studies have suggested the importance of T helper (TH1 and TH17 cells, accessory cells, and proinflammatory cytokines in the pathogenesis of the enthesis, synovium, and skin involvement in psoriasis in the presence of susceptibility genes that remain quiescent until triggered. Biologics, such as soluble CTLA-4 immunoglobulin, tumor necrosis factor (TNF inhibitors, and ustekinumab, inhibit T cell activation which eventually leads to further stimulation of the interleukin 12, 17, and 23 axis, TNF-α, and lymphotoxin-α. Treatment with TNF-α blockers has been effective in refractory psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis, but there is still a subgroup of patients who do not respond to TNF inhibitors and, paradoxically, when treated, may develop TNF-induced psoriasis. Ustekinumab, because of its different mechanism of action at the level of the interleukin 12, 17, and 23 pathways, is an alternative treatment for this group of patients.Keywords: psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, biologics, ustekinumab, tumor necrosis factor inhibitors

  7. Assessment of disinfectants in explosive destruction system for biological agent destruction : LDRD final report FY04.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Simmons, Blake Alexander; Didlake, John E. Jr.; Bradshaw, Robert W.; Crooker, Paul J.; Buffleben, George M.

    2005-01-01

    Treatment systems that can neutralize biological agents are needed to mitigate risks from novel and legacy biohazards. Tests with Bacillus thuringiensis and Bacillus steurothemophilus spores were performed in a 190-liter, 1-112 lb TNT equivalent rated Explosive Destruction System (EDS) system to evaluate its capability to treat and destroy biological agents. Five tests were conducted using three different agents to kill the spores. The EDS was operated in steam autoclave, gas fumigation and liquid decontamination modes. The first three tests used EDS as an autoclave, which uses pressurized steam to kill the spores. Autoclaving was performed at 130-140 deg C for up to 2-hours. Tests with chlorine dioxide at 750 ppm concentration for 1 hour and 10% (vol) aqueous chlorine bleach solution for 1 hour were also performed. All tests resulted in complete neutralization of the bacterial spores based on no bacterial growth in post-treatment incubations. Explosively opening a glass container to expose the bacterial spores for treatment with steam was demonstrated and could easily be done for chlorine dioxide gas or liquid bleach.

  8. Step by Step: Biology Undergraduates’ Problem-Solving Procedures during Multiple-Choice Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prevost, Luanna B.; Lemons, Paula P.

    2016-01-01

    This study uses the theoretical framework of domain-specific problem solving to explore the procedures students use to solve multiple-choice problems about biology concepts. We designed several multiple-choice problems and administered them on four exams. We trained students to produce written descriptions of how they solved the problem, and this allowed us to systematically investigate their problem-solving procedures. We identified a range of procedures and organized them as domain general, domain specific, or hybrid. We also identified domain-general and domain-specific errors made by students during problem solving. We found that students use domain-general and hybrid procedures more frequently when solving lower-order problems than higher-order problems, while they use domain-specific procedures more frequently when solving higher-order problems. Additionally, the more domain-specific procedures students used, the higher the likelihood that they would answer the problem correctly, up to five procedures. However, if students used just one domain-general procedure, they were as likely to answer the problem correctly as if they had used two to five domain-general procedures. Our findings provide a categorization scheme and framework for additional research on biology problem solving and suggest several important implications for researchers and instructors. PMID:27909021

  9. Molecular biological assessment methods and understanding the course of the HIV infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katzenstein, Terese L

    2003-01-01

    Only some twenty years has passed since the first discovery of severe immunodeficiency among previously healthy homosexual men through the discovery of the causing virus and till the status today where the knowledge on the HIV virus and the pathogenic mechanisms induced by the virus are extensive, though still incomplete. Furthermore, steadily better treatments have been introduced at a paste that is probably without precedents. These processes have been fuelled by various molecular biological methods. The abilities to quantify viremia and to sequence virus and hence describe the evolution of the virus represent valuable tools for understanding the pathogenic processes. The current thesis describes some of the findings obtained. While it was initially thought that the virological profile mimicked the clinical with an acute infection followed for years by clinical latency and only after on average ten years signs of severe immunodeficiency, this understanding has been revised. There is no virological latency. The viral replication is on going throughout the infection. However, the virological profile does resemble the clinical. Viremia is high shortly after infection; hereafter declines, and stabilises around what has been termed the viral set point. This level of viremia is predictive of the clinical course of the infection. We have shown that the viremic levels, measured both as HIV RNA load and proviral DNA load, early in infection carry significant information about the course of the infection. It is; however, not only early viral loads that carry prognostic information, also viral load during late-stage infection is clinically informative. Viral load measurements have evolved as the major tool for monitoring the efficacy of antiretroviral therapy. HIV RNA has been shown to be a good surrogate marker for the clinical efficacy of antiretroviral treatment. How to use the measurements most optimally has however not been fully delineated. Various methods for

  10. Metabolic Tumor Burden Assessed by Dual Time Point [(18)F]FDG PET/CT in Locally Advanced Breast Cancer: Relation with Tumor Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Vicente, Ana María; Pérez-Beteta, Julián; Pérez-García, Víctor Manuel; Molina, David; Jiménez-Londoño, German Andrés; Soriano-Castrejón, Angel; Martínez-González, Alicia

    2017-08-01

    The aim of the study was to investigate the influence of dual time point 2-deoxy-2-[(18)F]fluoro-D-glucose ([(18)F]FDG) positron emission tomography/x-ray computed tomography (PET/CT) on the standard uptake value (SUV) and volume-based metabolic variables of breast lesions and their relation with biological characteristics and molecular phenotypes. Retrospective analysis including 67 patients with locally advanced breast cancer (LABC). All patients underwent a dual time point [(18)F]FDG PET/CT, 1 h (PET-1) and 3 h (PET-2) after [(18)F]FDG administration. Tumors were segmented following a three-dimensional methodology. Semiquantitative metabolic variables (SUVmax, SUVmean, and SUVpeak) and volume-based variables (metabolic tumor volume, MTV, and total lesion glycolysis, TLG) were obtained. Biologic prognostic parameters, such as the hormone receptors status, p53, HER2 expression, proliferation rate (Ki-67), and grading were obtained. Molecular phenotypes and risk-classification [low: luminal A, intermediate: luminal B HER2 (-) or luminal B HER2 (+), and high: HER2 pure or triple negative] were established. Relations between clinical and biological variables with the metabolic parameters were studied. The relevance of each metabolic variable in the prediction of phenotype risk was assessed using a multivariate analysis. SUV-based variables and TLG obtained in the PET-1 and PET-2 showed high and significant correlations between them. MTV and SUV variables (SUVmax, SUVmean, and SUVpeak) where only marginally correlated. Significant differences were found between mean SUV variables and TLG obtained in PET-1 and PET-2. High and significant associations were found between metabolic variables obtained in PET-1 and their homonymous in PET-2. Based on that, only relations of PET-1 variables with biological tumor characteristics were explored. SUV variables showed associations with hormone receptors status (p metabolic variables and Ki-67, HER2, or p53 expression

  11. Continued vigilance - development of an online evaluation tool for assessing preparedness of medical facilities for biological events.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adini, Bruria; Verbeek, Luzie; Trapp, Susanna; Schilling, Stefan; Sasse, Julia; Pientka, Kathrin; Böddinghaus, Boris; Schaefer, Helene; Schempf, Jörg; Brodt, Reinhard; Wegner, Christian; Lev, Boaz; Laor, Daniel; Gottschalk, Rene; Biederbick, Walter

    2014-01-01

    Effective response to biological events necessitates ongoing evaluation of preparedness. This study was a bilateral German-Israeli collaboration aimed at developing an evaluation tool for assessing preparedness of medical facilities for biological events. Measurable parameters were identified through a literature review for inclusion in the evaluation tool and disseminated to 228 content experts in two modified Delphi cycles. Focus groups were conducted to identify psychosocial needs of the medical teams. Table-top and functional exercises were implemented to review applicability of the tool. One hundred seventeen experts from Germany and Israel participated in the modified Delphi. Out of 188 parameters that were identified, 183 achieved a consensus of >75% of the content experts. Following comments recommended in the Delphi cycles, and feedback from focus groups and hospital exercises, the final tool consisted of 172 parameters. Median level of importance of each parameter was calculated based on ranking recommended in the Delphi process. Computerized web-based software was developed to calculate scores of preparedness for biological events. Ongoing evaluation means, such as the tool developed in the study, can facilitate the need for a valid and reliable mechanism that may be widely adopted and implemented as quality assurance measures. The tool is based on measurable parameters and indicators that can effectively present strengths and weaknesses in managing a response to a public health threat, and accordingly, steps can be implemented to improve readiness. Adoption of such a tool is an important component of assuring public health and effective emergency management.

  12. Method for assessing the impact of emission gasses on physiology and productivity in biological methanogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seifert, A H; Rittmann, S; Bernacchi, S; Herwig, C

    2013-05-01

    This contribution presents a method for quantification of the impact of emission gasses on the methane production with hydrogenotrophic methanogenic archaea. The developed method allows a robust quantification of the influence of real gasses on the volumetric productivity of methanogenic cultures by uncoupling physiological and mass transfer effects. This is achieved over reference experiments with pure H2 and CO2, simulating the mass transfer influence of the non-convertible side components by addition of N2 to the reactant stream. Furthermore, this method was used to examine the performance of Methanothermobacter marburgensis on different emission gasses. None of the present side components had a negative effect on the volumetric methane production rate. The presented method showed to be ready to use as a generic tool for feasibility studies and quantification of the physiological impact regarding the use of exhaust gasses as reactant gas for the biological methanogenesis. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Chemical and biological assessment of Ziziphus jujuba fruits from China: different geographical sources and developmental stages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Jianping; Li, Zhonggui; Maiwulanjiang, Maitinuer; Zhang, Wendy L; Zhan, Janis Y X; Lam, Candy T W; Zhu, Kevin Y; Yao, Ping; Choi, Roy C Y; Lau, David T W; Dong, Tina T X; Tsim, Karl W K

    2013-07-31

    Chinese date, the fruit of Ziziphus jujuba Mill., has thousands of years cultivation history, and about 700 cultivars of dates in China. Two types of dates are commonly found in the market: (i) fresh immature dates consumed as fruits, and (ii) dried mature dates used as Chinese medicines. Here, chemical and biological properties of these dates were revealed. Different sources of dates showed similar chemical profiles; however, the amounts of identified chemicals showed a great variation. The amount of nucleotides, flavonoids and polysaccharides in dates could be affected by its maturity and drying process. In parallel, the antioxidative functions of their extracts were compared. The date extracts protected PC12 cells against tBHP-induced cytotoxicity, and which also stimulated the transcriptional activity of antioxidant response element. The antioxidative effects were varied among different dates. The current results suggested the optimization of sources and specific usage of different maturity dates.

  14. A case study of species assessment in invasion biology: the Village Weaverbird Ploceus cucullatus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lahti, D. C.

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available Application of recent insights gained in invasion biology to particular species may aid in addressing a central problem of the field, that of prediction of the dynamics of future introduction and invasion. The Village Weaverbird (Ploceus cucullatus is concluded to be a potential invader of concern in several regions, especially the Mediterranean, Caribbean, and southeastern United States. This conclusion is supported by the introduction and invasion history of the species, factors concluded in recent reviews and quantitative studies to correlate with introduction success or invasiveness in birds, the species' agricultural pest status in its current range, and a published rating system. A proactive stance is recommended since control efforts have met with little success, but certain characteristics of the Village Weaver may provide opportunities for management.

  15. Assessment of the biological activity of soils in the subtropical zone of Azerbaijan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babaev, M. P.; Orujova, N. I.

    2009-10-01

    The enzymatic activity; the microbial population; and the intensities of the nitrification, ammonification, CO2emission, and cellulose decomposition were studied in gray-brown, meadow-sierozemic, meadow-forest alluvial, and yellow (zheltozem) gley soils in the subtropical zone of Azerbaijan under natural vegetation, crop rotation systems with vegetables, and permanent vegetable crops. On this basis, the biological diagnostics of these soils were suggested and the soil ecological health was evaluated. It was shown that properly chosen crop rotation systems on irrigated lands make it possible to preserve the fertility of the meadow-forest alluvial and zheltozem-gley soils and to improve the fertility of the gray-brown and meadow-sierozemic soils.

  16. Macroinvertebrate-based assessment of biological condition at selected sites in the Eagle River watershed, Colorado, 2000-07

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zuellig, Robert E.; Bruce, James F.; Healy, Brian D.; Williams, Cory A.

    2010-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with the Colorado River Water Conservation District, Eagle County, Eagle River Water and Sanitation District, Upper Eagle Regional Water Authority, Colorado Department of Transportation, City of Aurora, Town of Eagle, Town of Gypsum, Town of Minturn, Town of Vail, Vail Resorts, Colorado Springs Utilities, Denver Water, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service (FS), compiled macroinvertebrate (73 sites, 124 samples) data previously collected in the Eagle River watershed from selected USGS and FS studies, 2000-07. These data were analyzed to assess the biological condition (that is, biologically ?degraded? or ?good?) at selected sites in the Eagle River watershed and determine if site class (for example, urban or undeveloped) described biological condition. An independently developed predictive model was applied to calculate a site-specific measure of taxonomic completeness for macroinvertebrate communities, where taxonomic completeness was expressed as the ratio of observed (O) taxa to those expected (E) to occur at each site. Macroinvertebrate communities were considered degraded at sites were O/E values were less than 0.80, indicating that at least 20 percent of expected taxa were not observed. Sites were classified into one of four classes (undeveloped, adjacent road or highway or both, mixed, urban) using a combination of riparian land-cover characteristics, examination of topographic maps and aerial imagery, screening for exceedances in water-quality standards, and best professional judgment. Analysis of variance was used to determine if site class accounted for variability in mean macroinvertebrate O/E values. Finally, macroinvertebrate taxa observed more or less frequently than expected at urban sites were indentified. This study represents the first standardized assessment of biological condition of selected sites distributed across the Eagle River watershed. Of the 73 sites evaluated, just over

  17. Assessing the biological contribution to microbialite growth and morphogenesis utilizing lipid biomarkers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beeler, S. R.; Gomez, F. J.; Bradley, A. S.

    2016-12-01

    Microbialites are sedimentary structures that arise from the interaction of microbial, geochemical, and physical processes. These structures are among the oldest evidence for life on Earth, and are abundant through much of the Proterozoic before declining in the Phanerozoic. Microbialites are of great importance geobiologically as they provide a record of microbial life and its interaction with the environment throughout Earth history. Yet, our capacity to use microbialites to reconstruct biological processes on ancient Earth is complicated by our lack of understanding of the mechanisms controlling the formation of these structures. The modern microbialites of Laguna Negra in northeastern Argentina [1] offer an opportunity to examine the biological and geochemical differences among microbialites displaying distinct morphological diversity in a single setting. Three broad types of microbialites are found at this site: oncoids, stromatolites, and laminar crusts. Each of these types of microbialites are associated with visually distinct microbial mats. We have examined the structural and isotopic composition of lipid biomarkers from each of these microbialite types, and their associated mats. Sterol profiles detected from microbial mats and microbialites showed abundant C27 to C29 sterols and indicate that primary producers are dominated by algae. Decreased abundances of more labile unsaturated fatty acids relative to more recalcitrant saturated fatty acids were observed in microbialites compared to extant mats suggesting preferential loss of these compounds during diagenesis. Among the three different microbialite morphologies, no statistically discernable differences in biomarker profiles were detected. This implies that morphological changes are due to either geochemical/physical changes across the zone of microbialite formation or changes in community structure that are not observable in the present biomarker set. [1] Gomez et al. (2014) Palaios 29, 233-249

  18. Investigation of oil drilling impacts to aquatic habitat resources: In Situ biological assessment of the photoinduced toxicity of environmental releases of crude oil

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This study proposed a biological assessment of a recent crude oil spill for potential impacts to aquatic resources due to petroleum hydrocarbon wastes. The...

  19. The scaling law of climate change and its relevance to assessing (palaeo)biological responses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiessling, Wolfgang; Eichenseer, Kilian

    2014-05-01

    It is often argued that current rates of climate change are unprecedented in the geological past. At the same time, the magnitudes of change were often much greater in deep time than they are in history. The most severe global warming in the Phanerozoic, with dramatic consequences for life, probably occurred across the Permian-Triassic (P-T) boundary when an increase of tropical water temperatures of 15° C has been observed to occur over a timespan 0.8 myr (Sun et al. 2012), whereas global ocean warming over the last 50 years was 0.35° C (Burrows et al. 2011). When transforming these data into rates of change the P-T rate was roughly 370 times smaller than the current rate. We argue that the smaller rates of change inferred from geological proxy records are due to a scaling effect, that is, rates of climate change generally decrease with timespan of observation. We compiled from the published literature data on measured or inferred temperature changes and the timespans over which these changes were assessed. Our compilation currently comprises 120 values and covers timespans from 20 to 107 years. A log-log plot of timespan versus rate of temperature change depicts a highly significant correlation (r2 = 0.95) of a power-law relationship with an exponent of -0.87. Warming trends show a slightly lower exponent (-0.84) than cooling trends (-0.89) but the explained variance is better for the scaling of warming trends. Importantly, the scaled warming trend across the P-T boundary is higher than the current rates of warming. Similar scaling effects are well explored for sediment accumulation rates (Sadler 1981) and evolutionary rates (Gingerich 1993). These have been interpreted as being due to breaks in sedimentation and periods of stasis or transient reversals, respectively. In case of climate change, transient reversals in general trends are the most likely explanation for the scaling relationship. Even relatively rapid intervals of warming, such as the Pleistocene

  20. Biological effects of static magnetic fields: a selective review with emphasis on risk assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Easterly, C. E.

    1982-04-01

    Rather than focusing on literature per se, the current study determines the status of magnetic field information that is applicable to risk assessment. Hence, an attempt is made to identify both the literature that is useful to the goal of risk assessment and a framework within which risk assessment methodologies can be derived. From this selected review, it is concluded that three areas exist for which adequate information can be found to begin modelling: disease induction, reproduction and development, and cardiovascular response. The first two are supported by a combination of positive and negative findings and the last by a calculational technique which utilizes the physically well-known principle of flow retardation for a conducting fluid moving through a magnetic field.

  1. Molecular biology methods in assessing radiation-induced hereditary risks in humans

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kiuru, A. [University of Helsinki, Department of Biosciences, Division of Genetics, Helsinki (Finland)

    2004-12-01

    Effort to predict the genetic consequences for humans of exposure to ionising radiation has been one of the most important issues of human genetics over the past 60 years. To date, there has been little experimental knowledge on the genetic risks of human exposure to ionising radiation. Radiation-induced deleterious hereditary effects have not been detected in human populations - not even among the offspring of atomic bomb survivors in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. This does not mean deleterious hereditary effects do not exist in humans, but rather that they are small and/or difficult to detect because the normal incidence of inherited abnormalities is quite high in the human population. Thus, assessment of radiation-induced hereditary risks in humans has been based on the common knowledge of human heredity and on animal experiments. However, recent data have suggested that hyper-variable tandem repeat minisatellite loci provide a useful and sensitive experimental approach for monitoring radiation-induced germline mutations in humans. In order to investigate the feasibility of the minisatellite mutation screening system in assessing radiation-induced hereditary risks in humans, we examined the amount of hereditary minisatellite mutations among the offspring of Estonian Chernobyl cleanup workers. The men studied received a median radiation dose of 109 mSv while working on the cleanup activities after the Chernobyl accident. We compared the minisatellite mutation rates of 155 children born to 147 Estonian Chernobyl cleanup workers after the accident to those of their 148 siblings born prior to it. In addition, 44 Estonian families, where the father had not been exposed to radiation, composed an additional control group. In all of these families, the paternity of the children was ascertained by using 5 minisatellite loci (APOB, HRAS, MCOB19, MCT118, and YNZ-22) in PCR-based analyses. Other 8 minisatellite loci (B6.7, CEB1, CEB15, CEB25, CEB36, MS1, MS31, and MS32) were used

  2. Research toward the development of a biologically based dose response assessment for inorganic arsenic carcinogenicity: a progress report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clewell, Harvey J; Thomas, Russell S; Gentry, P Robinan; Crump, Kenny S; Kenyon, Elaina M; El-Masri, Hisham A; Yager, Janice W

    2007-08-01

    Cancer risk assessments for inorganic arsenic have been based on human epidemiological data, assuming a linear dose response below the range of observation of tumors. Part of the reason for the continued use of the linear approach in arsenic risk assessments is the lack of an adequate biologically based dose response (BB