WorldWideScience

Sample records for assessing biological significance

  1. 76 FR 13597 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-03-14

    ... Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent for Hawkweeds AGENCY: Animal... subterminalis, into the continental United States as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of... hawkweed gall wasp, Aulacidea subterminalis, into the continental United States for the biological...

  2. GOAL: A software tool for assessing biological significance of genes groups

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Famili Fazel

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Modern high throughput experimental techniques such as DNA microarrays often result in large lists of genes. Computational biology tools such as clustering are then used to group together genes based on their similarity in expression profiles. Genes in each group are probably functionally related. The functional relevance among the genes in each group is usually characterized by utilizing available biological knowledge in public databases such as Gene Ontology (GO, KEGG pathways, association between a transcription factor (TF and its target genes, and/or gene networks. Results We developed GOAL: Gene Ontology AnaLyzer, a software tool specifically designed for the functional evaluation of gene groups. GOAL implements and supports efficient and statistically rigorous functional interpretations of gene groups through its integration with available GO, TF-gene association data, and association with KEGG pathways. In order to facilitate more specific functional characterization of a gene group, we implement three GO-tree search strategies rather than one as in most existing GO analysis tools. Furthermore, GOAL offers flexibility in deployment. It can be used as a standalone tool, a plug-in to other computational biology tools, or a web server application. Conclusion We developed a functional evaluation software tool, GOAL, to perform functional characterization of a gene group. GOAL offers three GO-tree search strategies and combines its strength in function integration, portability and visualization, and its flexibility in deployment. Furthermore, GOAL can be used to evaluate and compare gene groups as the output from computational biology tools such as clustering algorithms.

  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...

  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)...

  5. 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,...

  6. 75 FR 23221 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-03

    ... 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... the continental United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of...

  7. 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...

  8. 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...

  9. Biology Reflective Assessment Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bayley, Cheryl Ann

    Often students and educators view assessments as an obligation and finality for a unit. In the current climate of high-stakes testing and accountability, the balance of time, resources and emphasis on students' scores related to assessment have been slanted considerably toward the summative side. This tension between assessment for accountability and assessment to inform teaching strains instruction and educators' ability to use that information to design learning opportunities that help students develop deeper conceptual understanding. A substantive body of research indicates that formative and reflective assessment can significantly improve student learning. Biology Reflective Assessment Curriculum (BRAC) examines support provided for high school science students through assessment practices. This investigation incorporates the usage of reflective assessments as a guiding practice for differentiated instruction and student choice. Reflective assessment is a metacognitive strategy that promotes self-monitoring and evaluation. The goals of the curriculum are to promote self-efficacy and conceptual understanding in students learning biology through developing their metacognitive awareness. BRAC was implemented in a high school biology classroom. Data from assessments, metacognitive surveys, self-efficacy surveys, reflective journals, student work, a culminating task and field notes were used to evaluate the effectiveness of the curriculum. The results suggest that students who develop their metacognitive skills developed a deeper conceptual understanding and improved feelings of self-efficacy when they were engaged in a reflective assessment unit embedded with student choice. BRAC is a tool for teachers to use assessments to assist students in becoming metacognitive and to guide student choice in learning opportunities.

  10. Pseudogene redux with new biological significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salmena, Leonardo

    2014-01-01

    The study of pseudogenes, originally dismissed as genomic relics of evolutionary selection, has seen a resurgence in scientific literature, in addition to being a peculiar topic of discussion in theological debates. For a long time, pseudogenes have been touted as a beacon of natural selection and a definitive proof of evolution due to the slow mutation rate that differentiated them from their parental genes and ultimately caused their genetic demise as functional genes. It now seems that "creationists" have co-opted some recent reports identifying unheralded biological functions to pseudogens and other noncoding RNAs as evidence to undermine the existence of evolution and supporting intelligent design. This issue of Methods in Molecular Biology focused on pseudogenes will certainly not end, nor enter this debate; however, scientists who are also genomics and pseudogene enthusiasts will certainly appreciate that many scientists are thinking about these particular genetic elements in new and interesting ways. With this new interest in a biological significance and "non-junk" role for pseudogenes and other noncoding RNAs, new methods and approaches are being developed to unlock the mystery of these ancient artifacts we know as pseudogenes. In this brief introductory chapter we highlight the renewed interest in pseudogenes and review a rationale for intensification of pseudogene-related research.

  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. A REVIEW: BIOLOGICAL SIGNIFICANCES OF HETEROCYCLIC COMPOUNDS.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mukhtyar. S. Saini

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Heterocyclic chemistry offers an example for the lack of distinct demarcations; in fact, it pervades the plurality of the other chemical disciplines. Heterocycles are inextricably woven into the life processes. The vital interest of the pharmaceutical and agrochemical industries in heterocycles is often connected with their natural occurrence. Synthetic chemistry provides cornucopia of heterocyclic systems. More than 90% of new drugs contain heterocycles and the interface between chemistry and biology, at which so much new scientific insight, discovery and application is taking place is crossed by heterocyclic compounds. This review article covers the most active heterocycles that have shown considerable biological actions as antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, anticonvulsant, antiallergic, herbicidal, anticancer activity

  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. Assessing statistical significance in causal graphs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chindelevitch Leonid

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Causal graphs are an increasingly popular tool for the analysis of biological datasets. In particular, signed causal graphs--directed graphs whose edges additionally have a sign denoting upregulation or downregulation--can be used to model regulatory networks within a cell. Such models allow prediction of downstream effects of regulation of biological entities; conversely, they also enable inference of causative agents behind observed expression changes. However, due to their complex nature, signed causal graph models present special challenges with respect to assessing statistical significance. In this paper we frame and solve two fundamental computational problems that arise in practice when computing appropriate null distributions for hypothesis testing. Results First, we show how to compute a p-value for agreement between observed and model-predicted classifications of gene transcripts as upregulated, downregulated, or neither. Specifically, how likely are the classifications to agree to the same extent under the null distribution of the observed classification being randomized? This problem, which we call "Ternary Dot Product Distribution" owing to its mathematical form, can be viewed as a generalization of Fisher's exact test to ternary variables. We present two computationally efficient algorithms for computing the Ternary Dot Product Distribution and investigate its combinatorial structure analytically and numerically to establish computational complexity bounds. Second, we develop an algorithm for efficiently performing random sampling of causal graphs. This enables p-value computation under a different, equally important null distribution obtained by randomizing the graph topology but keeping fixed its basic structure: connectedness and the positive and negative in- and out-degrees of each vertex. We provide an algorithm for sampling a graph from this distribution uniformly at random. We also highlight theoretical

  15. 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....

  16. 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.

  17. Clinical and biological significance of precursor lesions ofintrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2015-01-01

    Cholangiocarcinoma (CC) is primarily a malignant tumorof older adults most prevalent in Southeast Asia, whereliver fluke infestation is high. However the etiology inwestern countries is unknown. Although the incidence ofextrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma has remained constant,incidence of intrahepatic CC (ICC) which differs inmorphology, pathogenesis, risk factors, treatment andprognosis is increasing. While this increase is associatedwith hepatitis C virus infection, chronic nonalcoholicliver disease, obesity, and smoking, the pathogenesisof ICC and molecular alterations underlying the carcinogenesisare not completely elucidated. Benignbiliary lesions such as biliary intraepithelial neoplasia,intraductal papillary neoplasm of the bile duct, vonMeyenburg complex or bile duct hamartoma, and bileduct adenoma have been associated with ICC. For eachof these entities, evidence suggests or supports a roleas premalignant lesions. This article summarized theimportant biological significance of the precursor lesionsof ICC and the molecular mechanisms that may beinvolved in intrahepatic cholangiocarcinogenesis.

  18. ADP-ribosylation of proteins: Enzymology and biological significance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Althaus, F.R.; Richter, C.

    1987-01-01

    This book presents an overview of the molecular and biological consequences of the posttranslational modification of proteins with ADP-ribose monomers and polymers. Part one focuses on chromatin-associated poly ADP-ribosylation reactions which have evolved in higher eukaryotes as modulators of chromatin functions. The significance of poly ADP-ribosylation in DNA repair, carcinogenesis, and gene expression during terminal differentiation is discussed. Part two reviews mono ADP-ribosylation reactions which are catalyzed by prokaryotic and eukaryotic enzymes. Consideration is given to the action of bacterial toxins, such as cholera toxin, pertussis toxin, and diphtheria toxin. These toxins have emerged as tools for the molecular probing of proteins involved in signal transduction and protein biosynthesis.

  19. 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

  20. 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…

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 50 CFR 402.12 - Biological assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... issue. (3) A review of the literature and other information. (4) An analysis of the effects of the... biological assessment to the Director for review. The Director will respond in writing within 30 days as to... shall convey to the Director either (1) a written request for a list of any listed or proposed...

  5. Biological Significance of Seed Oil and Polyphenolic of Olea europaea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Asif

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The olive tree Olea europaea have beneficial properties. Mainly used parts of the olive tree are fruits and seeds. Seeds oil of olive is used as a major component of the “diet.” Chief active components of olive oil include oleic acid, a monounsaturated fatty acid, polyphenolics and squalene. These main phenolic components are hydroxytyrosol, tyrosol, and oleuropein, which occur in highest amounts in virgin olive oil and have antioxidant properties. Olive oil has shown activity in against cancer, mainly in colon and breast cancer prevention, while individual component of olive oil, oleic acid and squalene has also been identified as anticancer agent. The olive oil has effects on coronary heart disease, due to its ability to reduce blood pressure and low-density lipoprotein level. Some components (such as hydroxytyrosol, tyrosol, and oleuropein of olive oil exhibited antimicrobial activity against pathogenic microorganism in intestinal and respiratory infections. The oleic acid, polyphenolics, squqlenes are dependable for a number of biological activities as well as whole olive plant also gives health benefits.

  6. 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.

  7. The hydrolytic products of aluminum and their biological significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertsch, P M

    1990-03-01

    The relative distribution of Al between its various organic and inorganic complexes dictates its mobility in the environment, bioavailability, and toxicity. In recent years, there has been significant progress made in understanding the differential bioavailability and toxicity of various chemical species of Al to plants and certain aquatic organisms. Far less information concerning chemical speciation and differential uptake and transport of Al in humans is available. Among the important inorganic complexes of interest are the hydrolyzed-Al species, particularly the nonequilibrium, metastable polynuclear complexes, which form readily, have a fairly wide stability range, and have been demonstrated toxic to plants and fish. In recent years(27)Al NMR spectroscopy has provided significant direct information on the polynuclear complexes existing in a wide range of aqueous solutions. The [Al12O4(OH)24+n(H2O)12-n]((7-n)+) polynuclear complex is often found to be the predominant species in partially neutralized Al solutions and has recently been demonstrated to be more toxic to certain plants than the hexaaqua Al cation. It is also the principal component of Al-chlorohydrate, a highly soluble antiperspirant, present in many hydrolyzed Al solutions utilized in water and waste water treatment, and, as hypothesized herein, a primary constituent of many hydroxide gels utilized as antacids. This polynuclear has a wide pH stability range, reportedly forms copolynuclears with Si, and contains tetrahedrally coordinated Al within its structure, all features that may be relevant to the recently reported properties of Al associated with neuritic plaque cores.

  8. Caveats for using statistical significance tests in research assessments

    OpenAIRE

    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 s...

  9. Computational Tools to Assess Turbine Biological Performance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Richmond, Marshall C.; Serkowski, John A.; Rakowski, Cynthia L.; Strickler, Brad; Weisbeck, Molly; Dotson, Curtis L.

    2014-07-24

    Public Utility District No. 2 of Grant County (GCPUD) operates the Priest Rapids Dam (PRD), a hydroelectric facility on the Columbia River in Washington State. The dam contains 10 Kaplan-type turbine units that are now more than 50 years old. Plans are underway to refit these aging turbines with new runners. The Columbia River at PRD is a migratory pathway for several species of juvenile and adult salmonids, so passage of fish through the dam is a major consideration when upgrading the turbines. In this paper, a method for turbine biological performance assessment (BioPA) is demonstrated. Using this method, a suite of biological performance indicators is computed based on simulated data from a CFD model of a proposed turbine design. Each performance indicator is a measure of the probability of exposure to a certain dose of an injury mechanism. Using known relationships between the dose of an injury mechanism and frequency of injury (dose–response) from laboratory or field studies, the likelihood of fish injury for a turbine design can be computed from the performance indicator. By comparing the values of the indicators from proposed designs, the engineer can identify the more-promising alternatives. We present an application of the BioPA method for baseline risk assessment calculations for the existing Kaplan turbines at PRD that will be used as the minimum biological performance that a proposed new design must achieve.

  10. Assessment of landfill leachate toxicity reduction after biological treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jemec, Anita; Tišler, Tatjana; Zgajnar-Gotvajn, Andreja

    2012-02-01

    In the present article, the efficiency of biological treatment of landfill leachates was evaluated by implementation of physicochemical characterisation and a complex toxicity assessment. An array of toxicity tests using bacterium Vibrio fischeri, alga Desmodesmus subspicatus, crustacean Daphnia magna, and embryo of fish Danio rerio, as well as unconventional methods using biochemical biomarkers (protein content, enzymes cholinesterase, and glutathione-S-transferase), were employed. Toxicity of leachates varied depending on the season of collection in relation to their different physicochemical characteristics. Uncommon effects of leachates on organisms, such as hormetic-like increases of algal growth and reproduction of daphnids, were identified. New approaches using the activities of enzymes were found unsuitable for routine hazard assessment of leachates. Although physicochemical parameters and toxicity decreased significantly after biological treatment, the effluents did not meet the demands of the current Slovenian legislation; thus, the existing biological treatment was found inappropriate. The development of advanced treatment techniques for landfill leachates is thus encouraged.

  11. Synthetic biology ethics: a deontological assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heavey, Patrick

    2013-10-01

    In this article I discuss the ethics of synthetic biology from a broadly deontological perspective, evaluating its morality in terms of the integrity of nature, the dignity of life and the relationship between God and his creation. Most ethical analyses to date have been largely consequentialist in nature; they reveal a dual use dilemma, showing that synbio has potential for great good and great evil, possibly more so than any step humanity has taken before. A deontological analysis may help to resolve this dilemma, by evaluating whether synbio is right or wrong in itself. I also assess whether deontology alone is a sufficient methodological paradigm for the proper evaluation of synbio ethics.

  12. 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.

  13. 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...

  14. 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...... 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...

  15. 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.

  16. Clinical Significance of Biological Markers at Primary Operation for Metastatic Breast Cancer

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Zhenhuan; YAMASHITA Hiroko; TOYAMA Tatsuya; YAMAMOTO Yutaka; IWASE Hirotaka

    2007-01-01

    Purpose: To identify the prognostic value of biological markers at initial operation for metastatic breast cancer, we measured the presence of estrogen receptor-alpha (ERα), progesterone receptor (PgR) and human epidermal growth factor receptor type 2 (HER2),and histological grade (HG) of tumors. Methods: One-hundred and seventy-six patients, aged 29 to 90 (median: 51 years), with recurrent breast cancer underwent primary operation at our department during the period from 1983 to 2000. Clinicopathological factors examined at primary operation included menopausal symptoms, presence of axillary lymph node metastasis, tumor size, HG, HER2, ERα and PgR.Factors examined at recurrence included site of primary recurrence, disease-free interval(DFI) and tumor markers, such as CEA and CA15-3. The relationship between these factors and prognosis following recurrence was assessed. Results: Menopausal status, axillary lymph node metastasis and tumor size at primary operation had no significant effect on prognosis. Patients with low HG, positive expession of ERα and PgR, and low HER2 expression had a good prognosis, similar to those with long DFI and distant metastases. After distant metastases, HER2 was found to be the most important prognostic factor following recurrence and in predicting response to drug therapy.Conclusion: Biological factors indicating tumor malignancy at the time of the first operation are also important prognostic factors following tumor recurrence.

  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. Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance in patients with psoriasis: is it really a side effect of biological therapy?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conti, Andrea; Esposito, Ilaria; Lasagni, Claudia; Miglietta, Roberta; Padalino, Claudia; Fabiano, Antonella; Pellacani, Giovanni

    2014-11-01

    Moderate-to-severe psoriasis is treated using biological drugs targeting cytokines involved in the pathogenesis of the disease, such as tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) (adalimumab, infliximab, etanercept) and interleukin 12/23 (IL 12/23) (ustekinumab). There is a slight risk of developing hematological malignancies, such as monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) with anti TNF-α agents. There are no data available on anti-IL12/23 drugs. This retrospective study of data from 191 patients describes the appearance and follow-up of MGUS in three patients with psoriasis receiving long-term biological therapy. Since the appearance of MGUS occurred after about 6 years of anti-TNFα treatment in only three subjects, it was deemed unlikely to be due to the biological treatment. The decision not to suspend biological therapy after the appearance of MGUS was taken after careful assessment of the possible risks and benefits.

  19. Z-score biological significance of binding hot spots of protein interfaces by using crystal packing as the reference state.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Qian; Wong, Limsoon; Li, Jinyan

    2012-12-01

    Characterization of binding hot spots of protein interfaces is a fundamental study in molecular biology. Many computational methods have been proposed to identify binding hot spots. However, there are few studies to assess the biological significance of binding hot spots. We introduce the notion of biological significance of a contact residue for capturing the probability of the residue occurring in or contributing to protein binding interfaces. We take a statistical Z-score approach to the assessment of the biological significance. The method has three main steps. First, the potential score of a residue is defined by using a knowledge-based potential function with relative accessible surface area calculations. A null distribution of this potential score is then generated from artifact crystal packing contacts. Finally, the Z-score significance of a contact residue with a specific potential score is determined according to this null distribution. We hypothesize that residues at binding hot spots have big absolute values of Z-score as they contribute greatly to binding free energy. Thus, we propose to use Z-score to predict whether a contact residue is a hot spot residue. Comparison with previously reported methods on two benchmark datasets shows that this Z-score method is mostly superior to earlier methods. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Computational Methods for Protein Interaction and Structural Prediction.

  20. 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.

  1. Clinical significance of computed tomography assessment for third molar surgery

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Kenji; Nakamori; Kei; Tomihara; Makoto; Noguchi

    2014-01-01

    Surgical extraction of the third molar is the most commonly performed surgical procedure in the clinical practice of oral surgery.Third molar surgery is warranted when there is inadequate space for eruption,malpositioning,or risk for cyst or odontogenic tumor formation.Preoperative assessment should include a detailed morphologic analysis of the third molar and its relationship to adjacent structures and surrounding tissues.Due to developments in medical engineering technology,computed tomography(CT)now plays a critical role in providing the clear images required for adequate assessment prior to third molar surgery.Removal of the maxillary third molar is associated with a risk for maxillary sinus perforation,whereas removal of the mandibular third molar can put patients at risk for a neurosensory deficit from damage to the lingual nerve or inferior alveolar nerve.Multiple factors,including demographic,anatomic,and treatment-related factors,influence the incidence of nerve injury during or following removal of the third molar.CT assessment of the third molar prior to surgery can identify some of these risk factors,such as the absence of cortication between themandibular third molar and the inferior alveolar canal,prior to surgery to reduce the risk for nerve damage.This topic highlight presents an overview of the clinical significance of CT assessment in third molar surgery.

  2. Clinical significance of computed tomography assessment for third molar surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamori, Kenji; Tomihara, Kei; Noguchi, Makoto

    2014-07-28

    Surgical extraction of the third molar is the most commonly performed surgical procedure in the clinical practice of oral surgery. Third molar surgery is warranted when there is inadequate space for eruption, malpositioning, or risk for cyst or odontogenic tumor formation. Preoperative assessment should include a detailed morphologic analysis of the third molar and its relationship to adjacent structures and surrounding tissues. Due to developments in medical engineering technology, computed tomography (CT) now plays a critical role in providing the clear images required for adequate assessment prior to third molar surgery. Removal of the maxillary third molar is associated with a risk for maxillary sinus perforation, whereas removal of the mandibular third molar can put patients at risk for a neurosensory deficit from damage to the lingual nerve or inferior alveolar nerve. Multiple factors, including demographic, anatomic, and treatment-related factors, influence the incidence of nerve injury during or following removal of the third molar. CT assessment of the third molar prior to surgery can identify some of these risk factors, such as the absence of cortication between the mandibular third molar and the inferior alveolar canal, prior to surgery to reduce the risk for nerve damage. This topic highlight presents an overview of the clinical significance of CT assessment in third molar surgery.

  3. Synthetic Biology and the Moral Significance of Artificial Life: A Reply to Douglas, Powell and Savulescu.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christiansen, Andreas

    2016-06-01

    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.

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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…

  7. Significance assessment of the external control effects of lecturers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kurbatova Margarita, V.

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The state policy regarding higher education has changed in the last decade. These changes were part of the efficiency programs of the public sector. Governments of different countries ruined previously existing system of higher education state regulation and attempted to build the quasi-market structure in the higher education industry. Such transformations served as timely and progressive reforms in the recent studies of the economics of education. Substitution of bureaucratic management mechanisms and modern competition managerial tools are articulated. Economic and institutional and sociological studies on the effects of the introduction of quasi-markets and managerial tools in higher education governance oppose to orthodox market approach. They drew attention to the fact that evaluation methods and improve the effectiveness of organizations and employees that are typical of the private sector often produce results that differ from those in the public sector. To assess the consequences of the introduction of managerial tools of external control activities of university lecturers used a methodology based on the allocation of the individual structural components (effects and building on their basis of a multi-level hierarchical model in the research. Each component of the model (single effect is characterized by a degree of significance (importance and the degree of severity. The results of the systematization and assessment of the significance of the effects of external control activity of lecturers of Russian universities implemented in conditions of quasi-market mechanisms of the higher education system are highlighted in the paper.

  8. 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.

  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. A Study to Interpret the Biological Significance of Behavior Associated with 3S Experimental Sonar Exposures

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-30

    Behavior Associated with 3S Experimental Sonar Exposures Patrick Miller Sea Mammal Research Unit Scottish Oceans Institute School of Biology...to investigate behavioral reactions of cetaceans to naval sonar and various control sounds, and the sound exposures required to elicit responses, in...order to establish safety limits for sonar operations. 3S project efforts have been focused upon informing the ‘exposure-effect assessment

  11. 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…

  12. Biological Characteristics and Etiological Significance of Porcine Respiratory Coronavirus(PRCV)

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    FAN Xiuping; FENG Li; SHI Hongyan; CHEN Jianfei

    2009-01-01

    Porcine respiratory coronavirus (PRCV), a spike (S) gene natural deletion mutant of transmissible gastroenteritis virus (TGEV), causes porcine respiratory disease complex. Research advances on porcine respiratory coronavirus were reviewed from four aspects of biological character, the model function for SARS-CoV research, contribution of the immunity to PRCV to protection against TGEV challenge exposure and other etiological significance.

  13. Synthesis of N11-anchoring biotinylated artemisinin derivatives and their preliminary biological assessment

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2010-01-01

    Unique endoperoxide moiety of artemisinin and its derivatives has been considered the functionality exhibiting highly potent antimalarial and anticancer activities.To investigate the mechanisms of their biological actions,development of suitable molecular probes including biotinylated derivatives is of extreme significance.The synthesis and preliminary biological assessment of four new biotinylated artemisinin derivatives have been reported in this work.

  14. Scientific Opinion on Risk Assessment of Synthetic Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epstein, Michelle M; Vermeire, Theo

    2016-08-01

    In 2013, three Scientific Committees of the European Commission (EC) drafted Scientific Opinions on synthetic biology that provide an operational definition and address risk assessment methodology, safety aspects, environmental risks, knowledge gaps, and research priorities. These Opinions contribute to the international discussions on the risk governance for synthetic biology developments.

  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. 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

  17. A Study to Interpret the Biological Significance of Behavior Associated with 3S Experimental Sonar Exposures

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-09-30

    1 DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT A. Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. A Study to Interpret the Biological Significance of...NRC, 2005). Modelling efforts under the PCAD working group have demonstrated the potential for behavioral effects to influence vital rates via...energy balances (New et al., 2013). Behavioral effects of noise exposure may be shaped by anti-predator adaptations (Frid & Dill, 2002), and it is likely

  18. 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…

  19. 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

    2017-02-01

    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 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 molecular biology workshop significantly increased the knowledge and skills of participants in molecular biology techniques. © 2017 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 2017.

  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. Significance of Attaining Users’ Feedback in Building Performance Assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khalil Natasha

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Generally, building is a structure that provides basic shelter for the humans to conduct general activities. In common prose, the purpose of buildings is to provide humans a comfortable working and living space and protected from the extremes of climate. However, a building usage is depends on the lifespan and the change of rate effected on their impact on efficiency of use. Hence, more attention needs to be emphasized on the performance of buildings as the changes are not static over time. This paper highlights the concept and requirements in evaluating building performance. Exploration on the concept of building performance is also addressed on the purposes of building performance and the link of performance towards the end-users and incorporating their feedback. It concludes that obtaining users’ feedback is vital in building performance and the requirements of assessment must outline the performance criteria and mandates in such building.

  2. 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...

  3. 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.

  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. Physical mechanisms and biological significance of supramolecular protein self-assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kentsis, Alex; Borden, Katherine L B

    2004-04-01

    In living cells, chemical reactions of metabolism, information processing, growth and development are organized in a complex network of interactions. At least in part, the organization of this network is accomplished as a result of physical assembly by supramolecular scaffolds. Indeed, most proteins function in cells within the context of multimeric or supramolecular assemblies. With the increasing availability of atomic structures and molecular thermodynamics, it is possible to recast the problem of non-covalent molecular self-assembly from a unified perspective of structural thermodynamics and kinetics. Here, we present a generalized theory of self-assembly based on Wegner's kinetic model and use it to delineate three physical mechanisms of self-assembly: as limited by association of assembly units (nucleation), by association of monomers (isodesmic), and by conformational reorganization of monomers that is coupled to assembly (conformational). Thus, we discuss actin, tubulin, clathrin, and the capsid of icosahedral cowpea chlorotic mottle virus with respect to assembly of architectural scaffolds that perform largely mechanical functions, and pyruvate dehydrogenase, and RING domain proteins PML, arenaviral Z, and BRCA1:BARD1 with regard to assembly of supramolecular enzymes with metabolic and chemically directive functions. In addition to the biological functions made possible by supramolecular self-assembly, such as mesoscale mechanics of architectural scaffolds and metabolic coupling of supramolecular enzymes, we show that the physical mechanisms of self-assembly and their structural bases are biologically significant as well, having regulatory roles in both formation and function of the assembled structures in health and disease.

  6. 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.

  7. Heterocyclyl linked anilines and benzaldehydes as precursors for biologically significant new chemical entities

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Raman K Verma; Vijay Kumar; Prithwish Ghosh; Lalit K Wadhwa

    2012-09-01

    Benzylidene and benzyl thiazolidinediones, oxazolidinediones, isoxazolidinediones and their acyclic analogs like alpha alkylthio/alkoxy phenylpropanoic acids, beta-keto esters and tyrosine-based compounds possess broad therapeutic potential in general and as Peroxisome Proliferator Activated Receptors (PPARs) agonists in particular in the management of hyperglycemia and hyperlipidaemia for the treatment of Type 2 Diabetes (T2D). We have synthesised and characterized some novel and suitably substituted heterocyclyl linked benzaldehydes and anilines, which can be easily and very readily derivatized to all the above mentioned classes to generate new chemical entities of broader biological significance. Synthesis of their benzylidene thiazolidinedione and diethyl malonate and also benzyl diethyl malonate and alpha-bromoesters derivatives is reported in some of the cases in the present work.

  8. Notch signaling and EMT in non-small cell lung cancer: biological significance and therapeutic application.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Xun; Wu, Hua; Han, Na; Xu, Hanxiao; Chu, Qian; Yu, Shiying; Chen, Yuan; Wu, Kongming

    2014-12-05

    Through epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), cancer cells acquire enhanced ability of migration and invasion, stem cell like characteristics and therapeutic resistance. Notch signaling regulates cell-cell connection, cell polarity and motility during organ development. Recent studies demonstrate that Notch signaling plays an important role in lung cancer initiation and cross-talks with several transcriptional factors to enhance EMT, contributing to the progression of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Correspondingly, blocking of Notch signaling inhibits NSCLC migration and tumor growth by reversing EMT. Clinical trials have showed promising effect in some cancer patients received treatment with Notch1 inhibitor. This review attempts to provide an overview of the Notch signal in NSCLC: its biological significance and therapeutic application.

  9. The prognostic significance of apoptosis-related biological markers in Chinese gastric cancer patients.

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    Xiaowen Liu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: The prognosis varied among the patients with the same stage, therefore there was a need for new prognostic and predictive factors. The aim of this study was to evaluate the relationship of apoptosis-related biological markers such as p53, bcl-2, bax, and c-myc, and clinicopathological features and their prognostic value. METHODS: From 1996 to 2007, 4426 patients had undergone curative D2 gastrectomy for gastric cancer at Fudan University Shanghai Cancer Center. Among 501 patients, the expression levels of p53, bcl-2, bax, and c-myc were examined by immunohistochemistry. The prognostic value of biological markers and the correlation between biological markers and other clinicopathological factors were investigated. RESULTS: There were 339 males and 162 females with a mean age of 57. The percentages of positive expression of p53, bcl-2, bax, and c-myc were 65%, 22%, 43%, and 58%, respectively. There was a strong correlation between p53, bax, and c-myc expression (P=0.00. There was significant association between bcl-2, and bax expression (P<0.05. p53 expression correlated with histological grade (P=0.01; bcl-2 expression with pathological stage (P=0.00; bax expression with male (P=0.02, histological grade (P=0.01, Borrmann type (P=0.01, tumor location (P=0.00, lymph node metastasis (P=0.03, and pathological stage (P=0.03; c-myc expression with Borrmann type (P=0.00. bcl-2 expression was related with good survival in univariate analysis (P=0.01. Multivariate analysis showed that bcl-2 expression and pathological stage were defined as independent prognostic factors. There were significant differences of overall 5-year survival rates according to bcl-2 expression or not in stage IIB (P=0.03. CONCLUSION: The expression of bcl-2 was an independent prognostic factor for patients with gastric cancer; it might be a candidate for the gastric cancer staging system.

  10. 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…

  11. Biological marker distribution and significance in oils and rocks of the Monterey Formation, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curiale, Joseph A.; Cameron, Douglas; Davis, Dean V.

    1985-01-01

    The biological marker distributions of several oils, core extracts and solid bitumens of the Monterey Formation of California have been studied. Sterane, terpane and monoaromatic steroid hydrocarbons were analyzed in samples from the San Joaquin, Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Maria Basins. The sterane patterns of both oils and extracts are characterized by (a) low relative concentrations of diasteranes, (b) low 20S/20R-5α,14α,17α-ethylcholestane ratios, (c) relatively high concentrations of cholestane ( vs. methyl- and ethylcholestane) isomers. San Joaquin Basin samples contain significant amounts of the 5β isomer, which is generally absent in samples from other basins. The carbon number distribution of 5α,14α,17α,20R steranes is similar for all oils, regardless of API gravity, depth or basin location, and is suggestive of open marine depositional conditions for the source material involved. 17α(H),l8α(H),21β(H)-28,30-Bisnorhopane is present in almost all samples. Certain San Joaquin Basin oils and extracts contain (a) a series of 25-nor hopanes, including 25,28,30-trisnorhopane, (b) a distinctive monoaromatic steroid hydrocarbon distribution, (c) an aliphatic hydrocarbon fraction devoid of n-paraffins. Biological marker characteristics suggest that the Monterey oils examined originated early in the maturational sequence, from elastics-poor source material. API gravities of the Monterey Formation oils examined vary monotonically with (a) bisnorhopane/hopane ratios, (b) aromatized/regular sterane ratios and (c) the concentration of monoaromatized steranes relative to terpanes and regular steranes. These oil gravity correlations exist regardless of sample depth or basin location.

  12. Measurement and biological significance of the volatile sulfur compounds hydrogen sulfide, methanethiol and dimethyl sulfide in various biological matrices.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tangerman, A.

    2009-01-01

    This review deals with the measurement of the volatile sulfur compounds hydrogen sulfide, methanethiol and dimethyl sulfide in various biological matrices of rats and humans (blood, serum, tissues, urine, breath, feces and flatus). Hydrogen sulfide and methanethiol both contain the active thiol (-SH

  13. Measurement and biological significance of the volatile sulfur compounds hydrogen sulfide, methanethiol and dimethyl sulfide in various biological matrices

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tangerman, Albert

    2009-01-01

    This review deals with the measurement of the volatile Sulfur compounds hydrogen sulfide, methanethiol and dimethyl sulfide in various biological matrices of rats and humans (blood, serum, tissues, urine, breath, feces and flatus). Hydrogen sulfide and methanethiol both contain the active thiol (-SH

  14. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pyszniak, Maria; Tabarkiewicz, Jacek; Łuszczki, Jarogniew J

    2016-01-01

    The endocannabinoid system (ECS) comprises cannabinoid receptors (CBs), endogenous cannabinoids, and enzymes responsible for their synthesis, transport, and degradation of (endo)cannabinoids. 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 (endo)cannabinoids 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. PMID:27486335

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. V. Yarman

    2013-01-01

    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.

  2. An abundant biological control agent does not provide a significant predator subsidy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Classical weed biological control agents, regardless of their effectiveness, may provide subsidies to predators and parasites. The chemically defended weevil Oxyops vitiosa Pascoe is a successful agent that was introduced to control the invasive tree Melaleuca quinquenervia. Two consecutive small ...

  3. 75 FR 12581 - Notice of Availability of Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-03-16

    ... COMMISSION Notice of Availability of Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for...: Notice of availability of Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for Exemption... Environmental Assessment Background The commencement of construction provisions of 10 CFR 30.33, 40.32(e),...

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDougall, Carmel; Woodcroft, Ben J.

    2016-01-01

    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 construction of

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDougall, Carmel; Woodcroft, Ben J; Degnan, Bernard M

    2016-01-01

    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 construction of

  8. 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

  9. ECETOC workshop on the biological significance of DNA adducts: summary of follow-up from an expert panel meeting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pottenger, Lynn H; Carmichael, Neil; Banton, Marcy I; Boogaard, Peter J; Kim, James; Kirkland, David; Phillips, Richard D; van Benthem, Jan; Williams, Gary M; Castrovinci, Alexis

    2009-08-01

    This workshop on the biological significance of DNA adducts included presentations of research results in the following areas: endogenous versus exogenous adduct levels; in vitro dose-response data on adducts and mutagenesis from alkylating agents; methyltransferases and alkyl transferase-like proteins in repair of O(6)-alkylguanine adducts; mathematical modeling of threshold dose-response in mutagenesis and carcinogenesis; and the use of genomics to characterize the relationships between adducts, gene expression, and downstream adverse effects. Presentations by regulatory scientists and other authorities addressed the role of adduct and mutation data in risk characterization. Consensus statements were developed and included the following: DNA adducts should be considered as biomarkers of exposure, which may play a key role in establishing a mode of action (MOA) for cancer. Adducts themselves should not be considered as equivalent to mutations or later stage events in carcinogenesis. Although it was not possible at this time to agree on a general level of adducts below which there is no adverse biological effect, there are examples of genotoxic mutagens/carcinogens for which thresholds have been demonstrated. Evidence regarding thresholds for mutations should be considered on a case-by-case basis, in light of available MOA and mechanistic data, to build a knowledge base. Participants agreed that guidance on a recommended format for data presentation (especially agreement on units and appropriate statistical analyses) would be beneficial. Finally, for initial cases, provision of a mechanistic explanation to support a hypothesis of a threshold for mutations was essential for the eventual use of this information in risk assessment.

  10. The protolobar structure of the human kidney: Its biologic and clinical significance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Inke, G.

    1988-01-01

    This book depicts the uniqueness of each kidney as a result of the interaction of the process of nephronogenesis with the random variability of vascular channels within the bounds of a limited space. The fields of anatomy, developmental biology, comparative morphology, embryology, nephrology, pathology, physiology, radiology, and urologic surgery are treated.

  11. Biological significance of metals partitioned to subcellular fractions within earthworms (Aporrectodea caliginosa).

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vijver, Martina G; Gestel, Cornelis A M van; Straalen, Nico M van; Lanno, Roman P; Peijnenburg, Willie J G M

    2006-01-01

    Metal ions in excess of metabolic requirements are potentially toxic and must be removed from the vicinity of important biological molecules to protect organisms from adverse effects. Correspondingly, metals are sequestrated in various forms, defining the accumulation pattern and the magnitude of st

  12. Risk assessment of biological hazards in the European Union.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hugas, Marta; Tsigarida, Eirini; Robinson, Tobin; Calistri, Paolo

    2007-11-30

    International, community and national food safety law and any subsequent decision-making practices aim to be based on risk analysis--a process consisting of risk assessment, risk management and risk communication. With the appointment of the European Food Safety Authority as an independent scientific point of reference in risk assessment, there is a clear functional separation between risk assessment and risk management in the European Union food safety context. When a food safety question on microbiological hazards is to be answered--which is under the remit of the EFSA's Scientific Panel on Biological Hazards (BIOHAZ)--extensive dialogue and interactions covering the clarity of the question, the acceptability of the deadline and the availability of all necessary information take place with both the risk managers who ask the question and the stakeholders. During the first mandate of the BIOHAZ Panel (2003-2006), the scientific opinions were mainly based on qualitative and in some cases semi-quantitative microbiological risk assessment. In the second mandate of the BIOHAZ Panel, and as a first step towards developing a European approach on Quantitative Microbiological Risk Assessment (QMRA), EFSA is preparing to carry out a QMRA on Salmonella in pigs, at European level through a consortium of European institutes.

  13. Concise Review: Quiescence in Adult Stem Cells: Biological Significance and Relevance to Tissue Regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rumman, Mohammad; Dhawan, Jyotsna; Kassem, Moustapha

    2015-10-01

    Adult stem cells (ASCs) are tissue resident stem cells responsible for tissue homeostasis and regeneration following injury. In uninjured tissues, ASCs exist in a nonproliferating, reversibly cell cycle-arrested state known as quiescence or G0. A key function of the quiescent state is to preserve stemness in ASCs by preventing precocious differentiation, and thus maintaining a pool of undifferentiated ASCs. Recent evidences suggest that quiescence is an actively maintained state and that excessive or defective quiescence may lead to compromised tissue regeneration or tumorigenesis. The aim of this review is to provide an update regarding the biological mechanisms of ASC quiescence and their role in tissue regeneration.

  14. 77 FR 41774 - Notice of Final Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for the...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-07-16

    ... of Final Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for the Construction and... significant impact. SUMMARY: Pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended (NEPA) (42... Final Environmental Assessment (EA) for construction and operation of a radiological work and...

  15. 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.

  16. Biological significance of complex N-glycans in plants and their impact on plant physiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard eStrasser

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Asparagine (N-linked protein glycosylation is a ubiquitous co- and post-translational modification which can alter the biological function of proteins and consequently affects the development, growth and physiology of organisms. Despite an increasing knowledge of N-glycan biosynthesis and processing, we still understand very little about the biological function of individual N-glycan structures in plants. In particular, the N-glycan processing steps mediated by Golgi-resident enzymes create a structurally diverse set of protein-linked carbohydrate structures. Some of these complex N-glycan modifications like the presence of beta1,2-xylose, core alpha1,3-fucose or the Lewis a-epitope are characteristic for plants and are evolutionary highly conserved. In mammals, complex N-glycans are involved in different cellular processes including molecular recognition and signalling events. By contrast, the complex N-glycan function is still largely unknown in plants. Here, in this short review I focus on important recent developments and discuss their implications for future research in plant glycobiology and plant biotechnology.

  17. Acid-soluble breakdown of homologous deoxyribonucleic acid adsorbed by Haemophilus influenzae: its biological significance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stuy, J.H.

    1974-11-01

    Competent bacteria of Haemophilus influenzae strain Rd were exposed to various kinds of radioactive deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) for short periods of time and at relatively low temperature. The fate of phage HP1 DNA was studied most extensively. Adsorbed DNA was partially acid solubilized by lysogens and by nonlysogens with very similar kinetics. The biological activity of the DNA decreased extensively in both lysogenic and nonlysogenic recipients. 2,4-Dinitrophenol had no effect on the acid solubilization but largely abolished the biological inactivation. Inactivation kinetics for three different markers and for the triple combination were roughly the same. The presence of 2,4-dinitrophenol in the medium, or the HP1 prophage in the chromosome, did not alter this observation. This suggests that acid solubilization involves the destruction of whole DNA molecules. In view of the absence of DNA homology between phage and host, it is concluded that acid-soluble breakdown of adsorbed transforming DNA is not an integral part of the donor DNA integration process. Behavior of mutant bacteria indicates that neither exonuclease III nor exonuclease V is involved.

  18. Metabolic disposition and biological significance of simple phenols of dietary origin: hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez-Morató, Jose; Boronat, Anna; Kotronoulas, Aristotelis; Pujadas, Mitona; Pastor, Antoni; Olesti, Eulalia; Pérez-Mañá, Clara; Khymenets, Olha; Fitó, Montserrat; Farré, Magí; de la Torre, Rafael

    2016-05-01

    Hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol are dietary phenolic compounds present in virgin olive oil and wine. Both compounds are also endogenously synthesized in our body as byproducts of dopamine and tyramine metabolisms, respectively. Over the last decades, research into hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol has experienced an increasing interest due to the role that these compounds may play in the prevention of certain pathologies (e.g. cardiovascular, metabolic, neurodegenerative diseases and cancer). The translation of promising in vitro and in vivo biological effects from preclinical studies to the context of human disease prevention initially depends on whether the dose ingested becomes available at the site of action. In this regard, information regarding the bioavailability and metabolic disposition of hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol is of most importance to evaluate the impact they may have on human health. In this review, we discuss and summarize the state of the art of the scientific evidence regarding the processes of absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion of both hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol. We also examine the impact of these compounds and their metabolites on biological activity in terms of beneficial health effects. Finally, we evaluate the different analytical approaches that have been developed to measure the plasma and urinary levels of hydroxytyrosol, tyrosol and their metabolites.

  19. 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.

  20. The universality and biological significance of signal molecules with intracellular-extracellular compatible functions

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2000-01-01

    Generally,cell signal molecules are classified into the extracellular signal molecules (the first messengers) and the intracellular signal ones (the second messengers).Cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP),calcium ions and calmodulin (CaM) are the traditional intracellular messengers,but they are also present in extracellular matrix (ECM).Some of them have been discovered to act as the first messengers through cell surface receptors.Other second messengers,such as cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP),cyclic adenosine diphosphate ribose (cADPR) and annexin,are also found existing outside animal and plant cells.The existence of these messengers with intracellular-extracellular compatible functions in cells may be a regular biological phenomenon.These compatible messengers might be the communication factors between intracellular and extracellular regions or among the cell populations,and are also important in regulating cell development procedure.

  1. 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.

  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. Vitamin D biology: from the discovery to its significance in chronic kidney disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuppari, Lilian; Garcia Lopes, Miriam Ghedini; Kamimura, Maria Ayako

    2011-01-01

    Vitamin D was discovered and had its chemical structure described in the early years of the last century. Although classified as a nutrient because it was found in small quantities in butter, it soon became clear that exposure of skin to sunlight, supplies most of the vitamin D necessary for good health in human beings. Vitamin D (D3 or cholecalciferol) synthesis in the skin is extremely rapid and remarkably robust despite the complexity of the mechanisms involved. However, a number of factors related to latitude location, season, and skin characteristics can interfere with the photoproduction of vitamin D. The 2 forms of vitamin D (D3 or D2-ergocalciferol) are biologically inactive and require activation in the liver and kidney. The product of the first hydroxylation of vitamin D in the liver, 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D), is the marker of vitamin D status. Hypovitaminosis D (serum 25(OH)D, <30 ng/mL) is highly prevalent in the general population, and patients with chronic kidney disease seem to be at higher risk for the development of hypovitaminosis D. It is believed that, besides the traditional factors, protein losses, gastrointestinal malabsorption, and defective skin synthesis of vitamin D might contribute to the elevated number of patients with suboptimal level of vitamin D status.

  4. [Clinical significance of dissociated cholestasis as a biological syndrome (author's transl)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardellach, F; Sierra, J; Coca, A; Villalta, J; Martinez-Orozco, F; Ingelmo, M; Balcells-Gorina, A

    1981-10-10

    The case histories of 1200 patients admitted to our hospital over a 20 month period were reviewed to determine the degree, frequency and cause of dissociated cholestasis as a biological syndrome. Patients were divided into two groups: group I with 80 cases, included all patients whose gamma-GT levels were more than 30 mU/ml and serum-bilirubin less than 1.2 mg/ml, with alkaline phosphatase levels between 90-180 mU/ml. Group II included those with alkaline phosphatase levels higher than 180 mU/ml (57 cases). All over incidence of dissociated cholestasis was 13.82%. Main causes in group I were infectious diseases, mainly pneumonias and urinary infections and congestive cardiac failure. In group II, neoplasias such as Hodgkin's disease and epithelial metastases and obstructions of the biliary tract such as vesicular or choledocal litiasis were the main causes. Transaminase levels underwent variable increases according to the different entities, without there being any difference between the two groups. The physiopathology as well as the anatomopathological aspects which could originate the syndrome are discussed.

  5. An algorithm for finding biologically significant features in microarray data based on a priori manifold learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hira, Zena M; Trigeorgis, George; Gillies, Duncan F

    2014-01-01

    Microarray databases are a large source of genetic data, which, upon proper analysis, could enhance our understanding of biology and medicine. Many microarray experiments have been designed to investigate the genetic mechanisms of cancer, and analytical approaches have been applied in order to classify different types of cancer or distinguish between cancerous and non-cancerous tissue. However, microarrays are high-dimensional datasets with high levels of noise and this causes problems when using machine learning methods. A popular approach to this problem is to search for a set of features that will simplify the structure and to some degree remove the noise from the data. The most widely used approach to feature extraction is principal component analysis (PCA) which assumes a multivariate Gaussian model of the data. More recently, non-linear methods have been investigated. Among these, manifold learning algorithms, for example Isomap, aim to project the data from a higher dimensional space onto a lower dimension one. We have proposed a priori manifold learning for finding a manifold in which a representative set of microarray data is fused with relevant data taken from the KEGG pathway database. Once the manifold has been constructed the raw microarray data is projected onto it and clustering and classification can take place. In contrast to earlier fusion based methods, the prior knowledge from the KEGG databases is not used in, and does not bias the classification process--it merely acts as an aid to find the best space in which to search the data. In our experiments we have found that using our new manifold method gives better classification results than using either PCA or conventional Isomap.

  6. Interaction of hepatitis B virus with tumor suppressor gene p53: its significance and biological function

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    The mechanism of the interaction of hepatitis B virus (HBV) with tumor suppressor p53 and its role in the hepatocarcinogenesis have been studied by PCR-directed sequencing, gel shift assays and in situ ultraviolet cross-linking assay. The biological function of the interaction of HBV with p53 gene was investigated by co-transfection of chloramphenicol acetyltransferase (CAT) reporter gene, p53 and HBV DNA, and quantitative PCR. Among the 16 primary hepatocellular carcinoma (PHC) samples, 13 were HBV-DNA positive,10 HBxAg positive and 9 p53 protein positive. The p53 gene point mutation was found in 5 samples, one of which had a G to T substitution located at codon 249. After analyzing the HBV genome by a computer program, a p53 response element binding sequence was found in HBV genome at upstream of enhancer I, from 1047 to 1059 nucleotides. This sequence could specifically bind to p53 protein, increase p53 protein accumulation in the PHC cells and stimulate the transactivating activity of p53 and HBV replication .The results also revealed that HBxAg could combine with p53 protein to form a complex in the cells and enhance CAT expression. Immunocytochemical staining showed that p53 protein complex was located in the cytoplasm and the process of p53 entry to nuclei was, in part, blocked. From our results, we conclude that the mutation of p53 gene at codon 249 is infrequent in HBV-associated PHC, the DNA-protein binding between HBV and p53, and the protein-protein binding between HBxAg and p53 might lead to the reduction or inactivation of p53 protein, which in turn resulting in HBV-associated hepatocarcinogenesis.

  7. The Impact of Alternate Assessment on Teaching and Learning for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roden, Melinda Reed

    2011-01-01

    Federal legislation mandates all students, including those with significant cognitive disabilities, participate in standards based education and in state assessments linked to those standards. To address this issue, this study used a multiple case study design in order to determine the impact alternate assessments based on alternate achievement…

  8. 78 FR 28873 - Availability of Final Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for the...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-05-16

    ... of availability. SUMMARY: This notice announces the availability of a Final Environmental Assessment (Final EA) which examines the reasonably foreseeable environmental impacts and socio-economic impacts of... SECURITY Coast Guard Availability of Final Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant...

  9. Random Forest Segregation of Drug Responses May define Regions of Biological Significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qasim eBukhari

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The ability to assess brain responses in unsupervised manner based on fMRI measure has remained a challenge. Here we have applied the Random Forest (RF method to detect differences in the pharmacological MRI (phMRI response in rats to treatment with an analgesic drug (buprenorphine as compared to control (saline. Three groups of animals were studied: two groups treated with different doses of the opioid buprenorphine, low (LD and high dose (HD, and one receiving saline. PhMRI responses were evaluated in 45 brain regions and RF analysis was applied to allocate rats to the individual treatment groups. RF analysis was able to identify drug effects based on differential phMRI responses in the hippocampus, amygdala, nucleus accumbens, superior colliculus and the lateral and posterior thalamus for drug vs. saline. These structures have high levels of mu opioid receptors. In addition these regions are involved in aversive signaling, which is inhibited by mu opioids. The results demonstrate that buprenorphine mediated phMRI responses comprise characteristic features that allow an unsupervised differentiation from placebo treated rats as well as the proper allocation to the respective drug dose group using the RF method, a method that has been successfully applied in clinical studies.

  10. Random Forest Segregation of Drug Responses May Define Regions of Biological Significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bukhari, Qasim; Borsook, David; Rudin, Markus; Becerra, Lino

    2016-01-01

    The ability to assess brain responses in unsupervised manner based on fMRI measure has remained a challenge. Here we have applied the Random Forest (RF) method to detect differences in the pharmacological MRI (phMRI) response in rats to treatment with an analgesic drug (buprenorphine) as compared to control (saline). Three groups of animals were studied: two groups treated with different doses of the opioid buprenorphine, low (LD), and high dose (HD), and one receiving saline. PhMRI responses were evaluated in 45 brain regions and RF analysis was applied to allocate rats to the individual treatment groups. RF analysis was able to identify drug effects based on differential phMRI responses in the hippocampus, amygdala, nucleus accumbens, superior colliculus, and the lateral and posterior thalamus for drug vs. saline. These structures have high levels of mu opioid receptors. In addition these regions are involved in aversive signaling, which is inhibited by mu opioids. The results demonstrate that buprenorphine mediated phMRI responses comprise characteristic features that allow a supervised differentiation from placebo treated rats as well as the proper allocation to the respective drug dose group using the RF method, a method that has been successfully applied in clinical studies.

  11. [Comparison and application of biological indices of macroinvertebrates in river health assessment].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geng, Shi-Wei; Qu, Xiao-Dong; Zhang, Yuan; Lin, Kun-De

    2012-07-01

    The different biological indices usually result in different results in the river health assessment. It is imperative and valuable to identify the correlation among different indices and their applicability for assessing stream health. In this study, totally five biological indices were selected and compared in the investigation of macroinvertebrate communities in the Taizi river. The results showed significant correlations among the five indices. However, due to the difference in health rating criteria for each biological index, different results of health ratings were obtained when different indices were used. The responding sensitivities to disturbance caused by different types of human activities were studied for each index to determine their applicability in assessment of river health. The data indicated that the BI index had significant correlations with land use and dissolved oxygen and was a good indicator for these two types of disturbance. The FBI index could well reflect the acid and ammonia contamination of the investigated stream. Strong negative correlation was found between the ASPT index and several water quality parameters concerning oxygen consumption. The B-IBI index had a significant negative correlation with the total nitrogen concentration, being a good indicator for nitrogen contamination. Besides, the B-IBI index was also significantly correlated to disturbance caused by other types of human activities and can be used as an indicator for both land use and aquatic pollution. To be concluded, the BI index and ASPT index can be individually used to assess the land use of a riverine and the impact of hydrochemical index on the ecosystems, whereas the B-IBI index could be a suitable indicator for evaluating the stream health correlated with various human activities.

  12. Biologic

    CERN Document Server

    Kauffman, L H

    2002-01-01

    In this paper we explore the boundary between biology and the study of formal systems (logic). In the end, we arrive at a summary formalism, a chapter in "boundary mathematics" where there are not only containers but also extainers ><, entities open to interaction and distinguishing the space that they are not. The boundary algebra of containers and extainers is to biologic what boolean algebra is to classical logic. We show how this formalism encompasses significant parts of the logic of DNA replication, the Dirac formalism for quantum mechanics, formalisms for protein folding and the basic structure of the Temperley Lieb algebra at the foundations of topological invariants of knots and links.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Abnormalities of chromosome 17 in myelodysplastic syndromes: Incidence and biological significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marisavljević Dragomir

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Cytogenetic analysis has proven to be a mandatory part of the diagnosis of myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS as well as a major indicator for predicting clinical course and outcome. Aside from the 5q-syndrome, no specific clinico-cytogenetic entity has been reported. To determine the incidence and clinical significance of acquired abnormalities of chromosome 17 in adult primary MDS, we reviewed the cytogenetic features of 271 patients detected at our institution during a 10-year period. Clonal cytogenetic abnormalities were identified in 109 cases. Among them, abnormalities of chromosome 17 were identified in 13 patients (11.9%. Five patients had „single" defects, while in eight patients abnormalities of chromosome 17 were associated with other chromosomal rearrangements („complex" defects. After chromosomes 5,7,8 and 1, abnormalities of chromosome 17 were the most frequent chromosomal rearrangements in our patients with MDS. Following „single" defects of chromosome 17 were identified: del(17(pl2 in two cases, and i(17(q10, del(17(q21;q23 and del(17(ql2;q22 in one case each. Two patients with del(17p, one with RAEB-t and the other one with CMML, had an aggressive course of the disease with accelerated leukemic transformation and short survival. Patient with i(17q had RARS subtype and died soon after diagnosis, while other two cases with interstitial deletions of the long arm of chromosome 17 had RAEB subtype and stable, no progressive course of the disease. Among „complex" karyotypes with abnormalities of chromosome 17 we identified der(l 7 in four, monosomy 17 in two, and del(17p and i(17q in one case each. Most of these patients transformed to acute leukemia and had very short survival. The results of this study suggest that abnormalities of chromosome 17 are frequent finding in MDS. Loss of genetic material in 17p, both in „single" and „complex" defects, seems to be closely related to poor prognosis of MDS patients.

  16. Assessment of programs in space biology and medicine

    Science.gov (United States)

    1991-01-01

    Over the past 30 or more years, the National Research Council Space Studies Board and its various committees have published hundreds of recommendations concerning life sciences research. Several particularly noteworthy themes appear consistently: (1) Balance - the need for a well-balanced research program in terms of ground versus flight, basic versus clinical, and internal versus extramural; (2) Excellence - because of the extremely limited number of flight opportunities (as well as their associated relative costs), the need for absolute excellence in the research that is conducted, in terms of topic, protocol, and investigator, and (3) Facilities - the single most important facility for life sciences research in space, an on-board, variable force centrifuge. In this first assessment report, the Committee on Space Biology and Medicine emphasizes that these long-standing themes remain as essential today as when first articulated. On the brink of the twenty-first century, the nation is contemplating the goal of human space exploration; consequently, the themes bear repeating. Each is a critical component of what will be necessary to successfully achieve such a goal.

  17. On the assessment of biological life support system operation range

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartsev, Sergey

    Biological life support systems (BLSS) can be used in long-term space missions only if well-thought-out assessment of the allowable operating range is obtained. The range has to account both permissible working parameters of BLSS and the critical level of perturbations of BLSS stationary state. Direct approach to outlining the range by statistical treatment of experimental data on BLSS destruction seems to be not applicable due to ethical, economical, and saving time reasons. Mathematical model is the unique tool for the generalization of experimental data and the extrapolation of the revealed regularities beyond empirical experience. The problem is that the quality of extrapolation depends on the adequacy of corresponding model verification, but good verification requires wide range of experimental data for fitting, which is not achievable for manned experimental BLSS. Possible way to improve the extrapolation quality of inevitably poorly verified models of manned BLSS is to extrapolate general tendency obtained from unmanned LSS theoretical-experiment investigations. Possibilities and limitations of such approach are discussed.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. A network-based method to assess the statistical significance of mild co-regulation effects.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emőke-Ágnes Horvát

    Full Text Available Recent development of high-throughput, multiplexing technology has initiated projects that systematically investigate interactions between two types of components in biological networks, for instance transcription factors and promoter sequences, or microRNAs (miRNAs and mRNAs. In terms of network biology, such screening approaches primarily attempt to elucidate relations between biological components of two distinct types, which can be represented as edges between nodes in a bipartite graph. However, it is often desirable not only to determine regulatory relationships between nodes of different types, but also to understand the connection patterns of nodes of the same type. Especially interesting is the co-occurrence of two nodes of the same type, i.e., the number of their common neighbours, which current high-throughput screening analysis fails to address. The co-occurrence gives the number of circumstances under which both of the biological components are influenced in the same way. Here we present SICORE, a novel network-based method to detect pairs of nodes with a statistically significant co-occurrence. We first show the stability of the proposed method on artificial data sets: when randomly adding and deleting observations we obtain reliable results even with noise exceeding the expected level in large-scale experiments. Subsequently, we illustrate the viability of the method based on the analysis of a proteomic screening data set to reveal regulatory patterns of human microRNAs targeting proteins in the EGFR-driven cell cycle signalling system. Since statistically significant co-occurrence may indicate functional synergy and the mechanisms underlying canalization, and thus hold promise in drug target identification and therapeutic development, we provide a platform-independent implementation of SICORE with a graphical user interface as a novel tool in the arsenal of high-throughput screening analysis.

  1. 75 FR 64984 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Hawkweeds

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-21

    ... Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Hawkweeds AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service... States as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of infestations of hawkweeds. We are making... subterminalis, into the continental United States for the biological control of hawkweeds (Hieracium...

  2. 75 FR 69396 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Arundo donax

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-11-12

    ... Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Arundo donax AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service... a biological control agent to reduce the severity of Arundo donax infestations. We are making the... United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of Arundo donax...

  3. Natural selection theory in non-majors' biology: Instruction, assessment and conceptual difficulty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Dianne L.

    Evolution by natural selection is the dominant and unifying theme in biology, yet many college students hold alternative conceptions about the topic even after completing general biology. To develop effective instructional strategies and track conceptual understanding, it is useful to have a detailed assessment tool easily used with large classes. This study presents the Conceptual Inventory of Natural Selection (CINS), a distractor-driven twenty item multiple-choice test that assesses understanding of ten concepts related to natural selection: biotic potential, stable populations, limited natural resources, limited survival, variation within a population, variation inherited, differential survival, change in populations, origin of variation, and origin of species. Development, refinement, and field-testing of individual CINS items are presented, and validity, readability, reliability and factor analysis of the CINS are described. There was significant correlation between student performance on the posttest CINS and end-of-semester interviews suggesting that the CINS is a useful classroom tool. The CINS was used as both a pretest and posttest to determine relative difficulty of the concepts among college students. The three most challenging concepts were random origin of variation, how populations change over time due to changing proportions of alleles, and how new species originate. Many students chose distractors including "need" as a driving force. Results support the use of non-traditional methods, as only students in such classes demonstrated any improvement on the CINS posttest. Pre and posttesting with the CINS was also used to assess relative effectiveness of using two types of supplemental reading materials (selections from narrative, non-textbook sources or from other general biology textbooks) in a general biology course. These results suggest that specific content of readings was more important than style of the readings. Implications for teaching both

  4. 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…

  5. 75 FR 11575 - James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-03-11

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is considering issuance of an exemption from...

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Thangapalam Jawahar Abraham; Shubhadeep Ghosh; Debasis Sasmal

    2015-01-01

    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.

  7. 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,…

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Primary Science Assessment Item Setters' Misconceptions Concerning Biological Science Concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boo, Hong Kwen

    2007-01-01

    Assessment is an integral and vital part of teaching and learning, providing feedback on progress through the assessment period to both learners and teachers. However, if test items are flawed because of misconceptions held by the question setter, then such test items are invalid as assessment tools. Moreover, such flawed items are also likely to…

  12. 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).

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-30

    Tyack, and J. Harwood. 2014. Using short-term measures of behaviour to estimate long-term fitness of southern elephant seals. Marine Ecology Progress...Rules for Categorizing Species’ Extinction Risk to Help Develop Quantitative Listing Criteria for the US Endangered Species Act. Conservation...Schwarz, S. E. Simmons, L. Thomas, P. Tyack, and J. Harwood. 2014. Using short-term measures of behaviour to estimate long-term fitness of southern

  14. 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.

  15. [Hygienic assessment of biologically rigid linear alkylbenzene sulfonates].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bocharov, V V; Ryzhkova, O A

    2010-01-01

    It has been found that there are both biologically rigid and biologically soft homologues in the homologous series of linear alkylbenzene sulfonates (LABS). It is shown that absorption of LABS molecules from aqueous to activated sludge phase may serve as a determinant that should be used to refer a homologue to as rigid or soft surfactants. The biodegradability, detergency, and toxicity of LABS were ascertained to be related to the size of molecular alkyl molecular substitute. It has established that the fractional compositions of linear alkobenzenes should be changed for the synthesis of LABS that have the maximum detergency, a high biodegradability rate, and a low toxicity.

  16. 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 measurem

  17. Biological exposure assessment to tetrachloroethylene for workers in the dry cleaning industry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashley David L

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The purpose of this study was to assess the feasibility of conducting biological tetrachloroethylene (perchloroethylene, PCE exposure assessments of dry cleaning employees in conjunction with evaluation of possible PCE health effects. Methods Eighteen women from four dry cleaning facilities in southwestern Ohio were monitored in a pilot study of workers with PCE exposure. Personal breathing zone samples were collected from each employee on two consecutive work days. Biological monitoring included a single measurement of PCE in blood and multiple measurements of pre- and post-shift PCE in exhaled breath and trichloroacetic acid (TCA in urine. Results Post-shift PCE in exhaled breath gradually increased throughout the work week. Statistically significant correlations were observed among the exposure indices. Decreases in PCE in exhaled breath and TCA in urine were observed after two days without exposure to PCE. A mixed-effects model identified statistically significant associations between PCE in exhaled breath and airborne PCE time weighted average (TWA after adjusting for a random participant effect and fixed effects of time and body mass index. Conclusion Although comprehensive, our sampling strategy was challenging to implement due to fluctuating work schedules and the number (pre- and post-shift on three consecutive days and multiplicity (air, blood, exhaled breath, and urine of samples collected. PCE in blood is the preferred biological index to monitor exposures, but may make recruitment difficult. PCE TWA sampling is an appropriate surrogate, although more field intensive. Repeated measures of exposure and mixed-effects modeling may be required for future studies due to high within-subject variability. Workers should be monitored over a long enough period of time to allow the use of a lag term.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. Assessment of biological Hydrogen production processes: A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Najafpour, G. D.; Shahavi, M. H.; Neshat, S. A.

    2016-06-01

    Energy crisis created a special attention on renewable energy sources. Among these sources; hydrogen through biological processes is well-known as the most suitable and renewable energy sources. In terms of process yield, hydrogen production from various sources was evaluated. A summary of microorganisms as potential hydrogen producers discussed along with advantages and disadvantages of several bioprocesses. The pathway of photo-synthetic and dark fermentative organisms was discussed. In fact, the active enzymes involved in performance of biological processes for hydrogen generation were identified and their special functionalities were discussed. The influential factors affecting on hydrogen production were known as enzymes assisting liberation specific enzymes such as nitrogenase, hydrogenase and uptake hydrogenase. These enzymes were quite effective in reduction of proton and form active molecular hydrogen. Several types of photosynthetic systems were evaluated with intension of maximum hydrogen productivities. In addition dark fermentative and light intensities on hydrogen productions were evaluated. The hydrogen productivities of efficient hydrogen producing strains were evaluated.

  1. Assessment of Constructed Wetland Biological Integrity Using Aquatic Macroinvertebrates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Galbrand

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available A surface flow constructed wetland consisting of seven cells was used to treat the leachates from a decommissioned landfill. Wetland monitoring was performed by evaluating the treatment efficiency of the landfill leachate and the wetland biological integrity of the wetland. The water quality samples were analyzed for iron, manganese, phosphorus (orthophosphate, pH, dissolved oxygen (DO, nitrogen (ammonia, nitrate, nitrite and TKN, chemical oxygen demand (COD, total suspended solids (TSS and total dissolved solids (TDS. Aquatic macroinvertebrates were examined using Average Score per Taxon (ASPT via the Biological Monitoring Working Party (BMWP biotic index, the Ephemeroptera, Trichoptera, Sphaeriidae and Odonata (ETSD biotic index, abundance of mayflies and trophic structure. Reductions of 49.66, 66.66, 1.91, 46.37 and 8.33% were obtained for manganese, orthophosphate, TSS, TDS and COD, respectively. The nitrite, dissolved oxygen and iron concentrations were not in accordance with the water quality guidelines for aquatic life. ASPT, ETSD, percent abundance of mayflies and trophic structure represented moderate to moderately-poor water quality in comparison to a high quality reference site. Iron had most adverse effect on the biological system of the wetland.

  2. Assessing Students' Performances in Decision-Making: Coping Strategies of Biology Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steffen, Benjamin; Hößle, Corinna

    2017-01-01

    Decision-making in socioscientific issues (SSI) constitutes a real challenge for both biology teachers and learners. The assessment of students' performances in SSIs constitutes a problem, especially for biology teachers. The study at hand was conducted in Germany and uses a qualitative approach following the research procedures of grounded theory…

  3. 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 ...

  4. 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...

  5. The Significance of Gas-Phase Mass Transport in Assessment of kchem and Dchem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lohne, Ørjan Fossmark; Søgaard, Martin; Wiik, Kjell

    2013-01-01

    In this work, the validity of electrical conductivity relaxation (ECR) as a method for the assessment of chemical surface exchange, kchem, and bulk diffusion, Dchem, coefficients is investigated with respect to mass transport limitations in the gas phase. A model encompassing both the oxygen...... is evident and modeled apparent activation energies for kchem are shown to decrease significantly. A criteria for the validity of Dchem is introduced while no such measure could be introduced for kchem. The effect of experimental parameters and material properties on mass transport limitations are presented...

  6. 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 ...

  7. 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).

  8. 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.

  9. Scientific factors for assessing biosimilarity and drug interchangeability of follow-on biologics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chow SC

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Shein-Chung Chow1, Laszlo Endrenyi2, Peter A Lachenbruch3, Lan-Yan Yang1, Eric Chi41Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC, USA; 2University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada; 3Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR, USA; 4Amgen, Inc, Thousand Oaks, CA, USAAbstract: Biological products are therapeutic agents produced using a living system or organism. In practice, access to these life-saving biological products is limited due to their expensive cost. In the next few years, patents of the early biological products will expire. This provides other biopharmaceutical/biotech companies the opportunity to manufacture follow-on biologics. For the conventional pharmaceuticals of small molecules, regulations and statistical methods for the assessment of bioequivalence for generic approval are well established. However, unlike the conventional drug products, the complexity and heterogeneity of the molecular structure, complicated manufacturing process, different analytical methods, and the possibility of severe immunogenicity reactions make evaluation of equivalence (similarity between an innovator and its follow-on biologics a great challenge for both the scientific community and regulatory agencies. This article reviews past experiences for the assessment of bioequivalence for conventional drug products. Detailed descriptions of the fundamental differences and assumptions between the chemical generic products and follow-on biologics are given. An overview of current regulatory requirements for assessing biosimilarity of follow-on biologics is provided. Statistical considerations for scientific factors for assessing biosimilarity and drug interchangeability of the follow-on biologics as posted at the recent FDA Public Hearing on Approval Pathway for Biosimilar and Interchangeability Biological Products are discussed. In addition, current statistical issues that are commonly encountered when assessing biosimilarity of follow-on biologics are reviewed

  10. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korde, Neha; Kristinsson, Sigurdur Y; Landgren, Ola

    2011-05-26

    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.

  12. Structural and Biological Assessment of Zinc Doped Hydroxyapatite Nanoparticles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristina Liana Popa

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the current research work was to study the physicochemical and biological properties of synthesized zinc doped hydroxyapatite (ZnHAp nanoparticles with Zn concentrations xZn=0 (HAp, xZn=0.07 (7ZnHAp, and xZn=0.1 (10ZnHAp for potential use in biological applications. The morphology, size, compositions, and incorporation of zinc into hydroxyapatite were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM, transmission electron microscopy (TEM, Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR, Raman scattering, and X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS. In addition, the cytotoxicity of ZnHAp nanoparticles was tested on both E. coli bacteria and human hepatocarcinoma cell line HepG2. The results showed that ZnHAp nanoparticles (HAp, 7ZnHAp, and 10ZnHAp have slightly elongated morphologies with average diameters between 25 nm and 18 nm. On the other hand, a uniform and homogeneous distribution of the constituent elements (calcium, phosphorus, zinc, and oxygen in the ZnHAp powder was noticed. Besides, FTIR and Raman analyses confirmed the proper hydroxyapatite structure of the synthesized ZnHAp nanoparticles with the signature of phosphate, carbonate, and hydroxyl groups. Moreover, it can be concluded that Zn doping at the tested concentrations is not inducing a specific prokaryote or eukaryote toxicity in HAp compounds.

  13. Biology Blogs: An Online Journal Club & Assessment Tool

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Souza-Hart, Janet A.

    2010-01-01

    A "blog" can be used as an online journal club to supplement classroom learning. When crafted in a certain way, it can help students develop their scientific reading comprehension, critical thinking, and writing skills in a way that can easily be assessed by educators.

  14. Autism: A Review of Biological Bases, Assessment, and Intervention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volker, Martin A.; Lopata, Christopher

    2008-01-01

    The number of children classified with autism in US schools has risen sharply over the past decade. School psychologists are being called upon with increasing frequency to assist in the identification, assessment, and treatment of these children. The diagnostic complexities and heterogeneity of the disorder make dealing effectively with this…

  15. 76 FR 45780 - Notice of Availability for a Finding of No Significant Impact and Environmental Assessment for...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-08-01

    ... Significant Impact and Environmental Assessment for Emergency Restoration of Seagrass Impacts From the... Administrative Trustee (LAT) for this emergency seagrass restoration. Under the National Environmental Policy Act, an Environmental Assessment for Emergency Restoration of Seagrass Impacts from the Deepwater...

  16. 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.

  17. 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...

  18. Determination of biologically significant hydrologic condition metrics in urbanizing watersheds: an empirical analysis over a range of environmental settings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steuer, Jeffrey J.; Stensvold, Krista A.; Gregory, Mark B.

    2010-01-01

    We investigated the relations among 83 hydrologic condition metrics (HCMs) and changes in algal, invertebrate, and fish communities in five metropolitan areas across the continental United States. We used a statistical approach that employed Spearman correlation and regression tree analysis to identify five HCMs that are strongly associated with observed biological variation along a gradient of urbanization. The HCMs related to average flow magnitude, high-flow magnitude, high-flow event frequency, high-flow duration, and rate of change of stream cross-sectional area were most consistently associated with changes in aquatic communities. Although our investigation used an urban gradient design with short hydrologic periods of record (≤1 year) of hourly cross-sectional area time series, these five HCMs were consistent with previous investigations using long-term daily-flow records. The ecological sampling day often was included in the hydrologic period. Regression tree models explained up to 73, 92, and 79% of variance for specific algal, invertebrate, and fish community metrics, respectively. National models generally were not as statistically significant as models for individual metropolitan areas. High-flow event frequency, a hydrologic metric found to be transferable across stream type and useful for classifying habitat by previous research, was found to be the most ecologically relevant HCM; transformation by precipitation increased national-scale applicability. We also investigated the relation between measures of stream flashiness and land-cover indicators of urbanization and found that land-cover characteristic and pattern variables, such as road density, percent wetland, and proximity of developed land, were strongly related to HCMs at both a metropolitan and national scale and, therefore, may be effective land-use management options in addition to wholesale impervious-area reduction.

  19. Biological Variation and Diagnostic Accuracy of Dehydration Assessment Markers

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    450 kcal; 57% carbohydrate , 30% fat, 13% protein, and 450 mg Na+) and 0.2 L water or apple juice. No additional food or water was permitted, and... athletes in the heat. Med Sci Sports Exerc 1998;30: 1598–602. 18. Walsh NP, Laing SJ, Oliver SJ, Montague JC, Walters R, Bilzon JLJ. Saliva parameters as...in body water after endurance exercise. Eur J Appl Physiol 2009;105:959–67. 23. Cheuvront SN, Sawka MN. Hydration assessment of athletes . Sports Sci

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. Strategies for Assessment of the Biological Performance and Design of Hydroturbines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carlson, Thomas J.; Richmond, Marshall C.

    2011-05-05

    The biological response of fish to turbine passage has been of concern for several decades and emphasized recently by consideration of hydro as a 'green' power source. The current state-of-the-art of hydro-turbine biological performance assessment, while still inadequate, has advanced considerably the past 10 years. For example, the importance of assessment of exposure to pressure changes during turbine passage has been emphasized by findings of laboratory studies of rapid decompression. It is now very clear that hydroturbine biological assessment must consider the physiological state and behavior of fish at turbine entry and changes in physiological state that drive aspects of behavior during tailrace passage. Such considerations are in addition to concerns about exposure of fish to mechanical and pressure sources of injury during turbine passage. Experimental designs and assessment tools have evolved for acclimation of test fish, observation of test fish behavior at approach and upon exit from the turbine environment, and precise estimation of turbine passage mortality. Fish condition assessment continues to improve permitting better classification of observed injuries to injury mechanisms. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models and other computer models permit detailed investigation of the turbine passage environment and development of hypotheses that can be tested in field studies using live fish. Risk assessment techniques permit synthesis of laboratory and in-field study findings and estimation of population level effects over a wide range of turbine operation scenarios. Risk assessment is also evolving to provide input to turbine runner design. These developments, and others, have resulted in more productive biological performance assessment studies and will continue to evolve and improve the quantity and quality of information obtained from costly live fish hydroturbine passage studies. This paper reviews the history of hydro-turbine biological

  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. Chemical and biological assessment of two offshore drilling sites in the Alaskan Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trefry, John H; Dunton, Kenneth H; Trocine, Robert P; Schonberg, Susan V; McTigue, Nathan D; Hersh, Eric S; McDonald, Thomas J

    2013-05-01

    A retrospective chemical and biological study was carried out in Camden Bay, Alaskan Beaufort Sea, where single exploratory oil wells were drilled at two sites more than two decades ago. Barium from discharged drilling mud was present in sediments at concentrations as high as 14%, ~200 times above background, with significantly higher concentrations of Ba, but not other metals, within 250 m of the drilling site versus reference stations. Elevated concentrations of Cr, Cu, Hg and Pb were found only at two stations within 25 m of one drilling site. Concentrations of total polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (TPAH) were not significantly different at reference versus drilling-site stations; however, TPAH were elevated in Ba-rich layers from naturally occurring perylene in ancient formation cuttings. Infaunal biomass and species abundance were not significantly different at reference versus drilling-site stations; infauna were less diverse at drilling-site stations. Our assessment showed that discharges from single wells within large areas caused minimal long-term, adverse impacts to the benthic ecosystem.

  5. Hydroxyl radical generation caused by the reaction of singlet oxygen with a spin trap, DMPO, increases significantly in the presence of biological reductants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishizawa, Chiho; Takeshita, Keizo; Ueda, Jun-ichi; Mizuno, Michiko; Suzuki, Kazuo T; Ozawa, Toshihiko

    2004-04-01

    Photosensitizers newly developed for photodynamic therapy of cancer need to be assessed using accurate methods of measuring reactive oxygen species (ROS). Little is known about the characteristics of the reaction of singlet oxygen (1O2) with spin traps, although this knowledge is necessary in electron spin resonance (ESR)/spin trapping. In the present study, we examined the effect of various reductants usually present in biological samples on the reaction of 1O2 with 5,5-dimethyl-1-pyrroline-N-oxide (DMPO). The ESR signal of the hydroxyl radical (*OH) adduct of DMPO (DMPO-OH) resulting from 1O2-dependent generation of *OH strengthened remarkably in the presence of reduced glutathione (GSH), 6-hydroxy-2,5,7,8-tetramethylchroman-2-carboxylic acid (Trolox), ascorbic acid, NADPH, etc. A similar increase was observed in the photosensitization of uroporphyrin (UP), rose bengal (RB) or methylene blue (MB). Use of 5-(diethoxyphosphoryl)-5-methyl-1-pyrroline-N-oxide (DEPMPO) as a spin trap significantly lessened the production of its *OH adduct (DEPMPO-OH) in the presence of the reductants. The addition of DMPO to the DEPMPO-spin trapping system remarkably increased the signal intensity of DEPMPO-OH. DMPO-mediated generation of *OH was also confirmed utilizing the hydroxylation of salicylic acid (SA). These results suggest that biological reductants enhance the ESR signal of DMPO-OH produced by DMPO-mediated generation of *OH from 1O2, and that spin trap-mediated *OH generation hardly occurs with DEPMPO.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

    2017-01-01

    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 three categories of coat condition: (i) monkeys that remained fully haired; (ii) monkeys that remained alopecic (with more than 30% hair loss); or (iii) 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). Am. J. Primatol. 79:e22547, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Integrated analysis of microRNA and mRNA expression: Adding biological significance to microRNA target predictions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M. van Iterson (Mat); S. Bervoets (Sander); E.J. de Meijer (Emile); H.P. Buermans (Henk); P.A.C. 't Hoen (Peter); R.X. Menezes (Renée); J.M. Boer (Judith)

    2013-01-01

    textabstractCurrent microRNA target predictions are based on sequence information and empirically derived rules but do not make use of the expression of microRNAs and their targets. This study aimed to improve microRNA target predictions in a given biological context, using in silico predictions, mi

  11. 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.

  12. The relative significance of biological and physical disturbance: an example from intertidal and subtidal sandy bottom communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brey, Thomas

    1991-10-01

    The effects of biological disturbance caused by the lugworm Arenicola marina (L.) on the abundance of the macrobenthic fauna were investigated at three subtidal stations (0·5 m, 12 m and 19 m water depth) in Kiel Bay (western Baltic) and on an intertidal flat in the German Wadden Sea. Different effects of biological disturbance were observed (1) between funnel and cast of the lugworm burrow, (2) among stations, (3) between seasons, and (4) among taxa and groups of different living mode of the macrofauna. The strength of the impact of A. marina on the abundance of a certain macrobenthic species depends on three factors: (1) species behaviour and living mode, (2) A. marina activity, and (3) hydrodynamic conditions. In general, the most distinct effects were observed at the intertidal station during summer, followed by the two deeper subtidal stations. At the very shallow station, only weak effects were detected.

  13. Significant ELCAP analysis results: Summary report. [End-use Load and Consumer Assessment Program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pratt, R.G.; Conner, C.C.; Drost, M.K.; Miller, N.E.; Cooke, B.A.; Halverson, M.A.; Lebaron, B.A.; Lucas, R.G.; Jo, J.; Richman, E.E.; Sandusky, W.F. (Pacific Northwest Lab., Richland, WA (USA)); Ritland, K.G. (Ritland Associates, Seattle, WA (USA)); Taylor, M.E. (USDOE Bonneville Power Administration, Portland, OR (USA)); Hauser, S.G. (Solar Energy Research Inst., Golden, CO (USA))

    1991-02-01

    The evolution of the End-Use Load and Consumer Assessment Program (ELCAP) since 1983 at Bonneville Power Administration (Bonneville) has been eventful and somewhat tortuous. The birth pangs of a data set so large and encompassing as this have been overwhelming at times. The early adolescent stage of data set development and use has now been reached and preliminary results of early analyses of the data are becoming well known. However, the full maturity of the data set and the corresponding wealth of analytic insights are not fully realized. This document is in some sense a milestone in the brief history of the program. It is a summary of the results of the first five years of the program, principally containing excerpts from a number of previous reports. It is meant to highlight significant accomplishments and analytical results, with a focus on the principal results. Many of the results have a broad application in the utility load research community in general, although the real breadth of the data set remains largely unexplored. The first section of the document introduces the data set: how the buildings were selected, how the metering equipment was installed, and how the data set has been prepared for analysis. Each of the sections that follow the introduction summarize a particular analytic result. A large majority of the analyses to date involve the residential samples, as these were installed first and had highest priority on the analytic agenda. Two exploratory analyses using commercial data are included as an introduction to the commercial analyses that are currently underway. Most of the sections reference more complete technical reports which the reader should refer to for details of the methodology and for more complete discussion of the results. Sections have been processed separately for inclusion on the data base.

  14. Assessing the significance of conserved genomic aberrations using high resolution genomic microarrays.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mitchell Guttman

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Genomic aberrations recurrent in a particular cancer type can be important prognostic markers for tumor progression. Typically in early tumorigenesis, cells incur a breakdown of the DNA replication machinery that results in an accumulation of genomic aberrations in the form of duplications, deletions, translocations, and other genomic alterations. Microarray methods allow for finer mapping of these aberrations than has previously been possible; however, data processing and analysis methods have not taken full advantage of this higher resolution. Attention has primarily been given to analysis on the single sample level, where multiple adjacent probes are necessarily used as replicates for the local region containing their target sequences. However, regions of concordant aberration can be short enough to be detected by only one, or very few, array elements. We describe a method called Multiple Sample Analysis for assessing the significance of concordant genomic aberrations across multiple experiments that does not require a-priori definition of aberration calls for each sample. If there are multiple samples, representing a class, then by exploiting the replication across samples our method can detect concordant aberrations at much higher resolution than can be derived from current single sample approaches. Additionally, this method provides a meaningful approach to addressing population-based questions such as determining important regions for a cancer subtype of interest or determining regions of copy number variation in a population. Multiple Sample Analysis also provides single sample aberration calls in the locations of significant concordance, producing high resolution calls per sample, in concordant regions. The approach is demonstrated on a dataset representing a challenging but important resource: breast tumors that have been formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded, archived, and subsequently UV-laser capture microdissected and hybridized to two

  15. Literary translation and quality assessment analysis – its significance in translation training

    OpenAIRE

    2004-01-01

    This paper aims to highlight the role of translation quality assessment in translation training so as to develop students’ translation competence and skills to face translation problems. An analysis to assess literary translation quality is proposed before proceeding to discuss its pedagogical implementation.

  16. High-Resolution Gene Flow Model for Assessing Environmental Impacts of Transgene Escape Based on Biological Parameters and Wind Speed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lei; Haccou, Patsy; Lu, Bao-Rong

    2016-01-01

    Environmental impacts caused by transgene flow from genetically engineered (GE) crops to their wild relatives mediated by pollination are longstanding biosafety concerns worldwide. Mathematical modeling provides a useful tool for estimating frequencies of pollen-mediated gene flow (PMGF) that are critical for assessing such environmental impacts. However, most PMGF models are impractical for this purpose because their parameterization requires actual data from field experiments. In addition, most of these models are usually too general and ignored the important biological characteristics of concerned plant species; and therefore cannot provide accurate prediction for PMGF frequencies. It is necessary to develop more accurate PMGF models based on biological and climatic parameters that can be easily measured in situ. Here, we present a quasi-mechanistic PMGF model that only requires the input of biological and wind speed parameters without actual data from field experiments. Validation of the quasi-mechanistic model based on five sets of published data from field experiments showed significant correlations between the model-simulated and field experimental-generated PMGF frequencies. These results suggest accurate prediction for PMGF frequencies using this model, provided that the necessary biological parameters and wind speed data are available. This model can largely facilitate the assessment and management of environmental impacts caused by transgene flow, such as determining transgene flow frequencies at a particular spatial distance, and establishing spatial isolation between a GE crop and its coexisting non-GE counterparts and wild relatives.

  17. 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.

  18. Inclusion of soil arsenic bioaccessibility in ecological risk assessment and comparison with biological effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saunders, Jared R; Knopper, Loren D; Koch, Iris; Reimer, Kenneth J

    2011-12-15

    The purpose of this study was to conduct an ecological risk assessment (ERA) for meadow voles (Microtus pennslvanicus) found at three arsenic contaminated sites in Nova Scotia, Canada (as well as two background locations) and to compare the numeric results to measured biomarkers of exposure and effect. The daily intake of arsenic by meadow voles was determined by three separate calculations: estimated daily intake (EDI), bioaccessible estimated daily intake (BEDI, with bioaccessibility of soil included), and actual daily intake (ADI, which is calculated with arsenic concentrations in the stomach contents). The median bioaccessibility of arsenic in soils from the contaminated locations was significantly greater than at background locations. The bioaccessible arsenic concentration in soil from all samples (both contaminated and background) was significantly less than the total concentration. Use of site-specific bioaccessibility (hazard quotients=38 at Upper Seal Harbour (USH); 60 at Lower Seal Harbour (LSH); and 120 at Montague tailings (MONT)) and stomach arsenic contents (hazard quotients=2.1 at USH; 7.9 at LSH; and 6.7 at MONT) in the ERA resulted in lower numeric risk than compared to risk calculated with 100% bioavailability (hazard quotient=180 at USH; 75 at LSH; and 680 at MONT). Further, the use of bioaccessibility on the calculation of risk was aligned with biomarker results (changes in glutathione and micronucleated erythrocytes) in voles captured at the sites. This study provides evidence that using site-specific bioaccessibility in ERAs may provide a more realistic level of conservatism, thereby enhancing the accuracy of predicting risk to wildlife receptors. Furthermore, when numeric risk assessments are combined with site-specific biological data (i.e., biomarkers of exposure and effect), both lines of evidence can be used to make informed decisions about ecological risk and site management.

  19. 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.

  20. 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…

  1. Risk assessment and stakeholder perceptions in novel biological control agent release: YST as a case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    The objectives of risk assessment are to learn about whether a candidate agent would be safe to use in the environment where release is planned, and to present such information in a clear, understandable format to regulators, stakeholders, and the public. Plant pathogens evaluated for biological co...

  2. Biological assessment of effects of combined sewer overflows and storm water discharges.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lijklema, L.; Roijackers, R.M.M.; Cuppen, J.G.M.

    1989-01-01

    The biological effects of discharges from combined or separated sewer systems are difficult to assess or to predict due to variahilities in concentrations, environmental conditions, morphometry, susceptibility of organisms, seasonality and other factors. A general discussion of the problem results i

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. [THE DETECTION OF CONTENT OF DIAGNOSTICALLY SIGNIFICANT FATTY ACIDS AND INDIVIDUAL TRIGLYCERIDES IN BIOLOGICAL MEDIUMS BASED ON INFRARED SPECTROMETRY].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalinin, A V; Krasheninnikov, V N; Sviridov, A P; Titov, V N

    2015-11-01

    The content of clinically important fatty acids and individual triglycerides in food and biological mediums are traditionally detected by gas and fluid chromatography in various methodical modifications. The techniques are hard-to-get in laboratories of clinical biochemistry. The study was carried out to develop procedures and equipment for operative quantitative detection of concentration of fatty acids, primarily palmitic saturated fatty acid and oleic mono unsaturated fatty acid. Also detection was applied to sums ofpolyenoic (eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acid) fatty acids in biological mediums (cod-liver oil, tissues, blood plasma) using spectrometers of short-range infrared band of different types: with Fourier transform, diffraction and combined scattering. The evidences of reliable and reproducible quantitative detection offatty acids were received on the basis of technique of calibration (regression) by projection on latent structures using standard samples of mixtures of oils and fats. The evaluation is implemented concerning possibility of separate detection of content of palmitic and oleic triglycerides in mediums with presence of water The choice of technical conditions and mode of application of certain types of infrared spectrometers and techniques of their calibration is substantiated

  6. Surface functionalization of bioactive glasses with natural molecules of biological significance, Part I: Gallic acid as model molecule

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-12-01

    Gallic acid (3,4,5-trihydroxybenzoic acid, GA) and its derivatives are a group of biomolecules (polyphenols) obtained from plants. They have effects which are potentially beneficial to heath, for example they are antioxidant, anticarcinogenic and antibacterial, as recently investigated in many fields such as medicine, food and plant sciences. The main drawbacks of these molecules are both low stability and bioavailability. In this research work the opportunity to graft GA to bioactive glasses is investigated, in order to deliver the undamaged biological molecule into the body, using the biomaterial surfaces as a localized carrier. GA was considered for functionalization since it is a good model molecule for polyphenols and presents several interesting biological activities, like antibacterial, antioxidant and anticarcinogenic properties. Two different silica based bioactive glasses (SCNA and CEL2), with different reactivity, were employed as substrates. UV photometry combined with the Folin&Ciocalteu reagent was adopted to test the concentration of GA in uptake solution after functionalization. This test verified how much GA consumption occurred with surface modification and it was also used on solid samples to test the presence of GA on functionalized glasses. XPS and SEM-EDS techniques were employed to characterize the modification of material surface properties and functional group composition before and after functionalization.

  7. 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.

  8. Biology, host specificity tests, and risk assessment of the sawfly Heteroperreyia hubrichi, a potential biological control agent of Schinus terebinthifolius in Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abstract. Heteroperreyia hubrichi Malaise (Hymenoptera: Pergidae), a foliage feeding sawfly of Schinus terebinthifolius Raddi (Sapindales: Anacardiaceae), was studied to assess its suitability as a classical biological control agent of this invasive weed in Hawaii. Nochoice host-specificity tests we...

  9. 76 FR 80366 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment (EA) and Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-12-23

    ... significant environmental impacts are anticipated from the issuance of the 2012 Construction General Permit... significant environmental impacts are anticipated from the issuance of the 2012 Construction General Permit... that no significant environmental impacts are anticipated from the issuance of the 2012...

  10. Lineage plasticity and cell biology of fibrocartilage and hyaline cartilage: Its significance in cartilage repair and replacement

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Freemont, Anthony J. [Regenerative Medicine Research Group, University of Manchester, England (United Kingdom)]. E-mail: Tony.freemont@man.ac.uk; Hoyland, Judith [Regenerative Medicine Research Group, University of Manchester, England (United Kingdom)

    2006-01-15

    Cartilage repair is a major goal of modern tissue engineering. To produce novel engineered implants requires a knowledge of the basic biology of the tissues that are to be replaced or reproduced. Hyaline articular cartilage and meniscal fibrocartilage are two tissues that have excited attention because of the frequency with which they are damaged. A basic strategy is to re-engineer these tissues ex vivo by stimulating stem cells to differentiate into the cells of the mature tissue capable of producing an intact functional matrix. In this brief review, the sources of cells for tissue engineering cartilage and the culture conditions that have promoted differentiation are discussed within the context of natural cartilage repair. In particular, the role of cell density, cytokines, load, matrices and oxygen tension are discussed.

  11. Identification, characterization and biological significance of very small embryonic-like stem cells (VSELs) in regenerative medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Guowei; Cui, Jian; Zheng, Yizhou; Han, Zhongchao; Xu, Yong; Li, Zongjin

    2012-07-01

    The progress of stem cell research, along with technological innovation, has brought researchers to focus on the potential role of stem cells in regenerative medicine. Ethical and technological issues have limited the applications of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) in this field. As a promising candidate, very small embryonic-like stem cells (VSELs) express a multitude of pluripotent stem cell markers and demonstrate the ability to differentiate into three germ-layer lineages in vitro. Optimized methods for isolation and expansion of VSELs have aroused the scientific community's interest in use of this kind of cells for regenerative purposes. In this review, we will focus on the biological characteristics, as well as the potentiality and remaining challenges in clinical application of VSELs. Moreover, a comparison among VSELs and the other pluripotent stem cells will be illustrated to highlight the unique advantages of VSELs.

  12. The abnormal distribution of the molecular fossils in the pre-Cambrian and Cambrian: its biological significance

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    Dinosteranes and 4-methyl-24-ethylcholestanes are usually to be thought of as biomarkers for dinoflagellates, and 24-norcholestanes and C28 steranes for diatom. Therefore, the highest concentrations of these compounds are typically found in strata deposited since the beginning of the Mesozoic. However these compounds appeared widely and abundantly in extracts from organic-rich sediments in the Sinian and Cambrian of the Tarim Basin. This suggests that some of the planktonic algae such as dinoflagellates and diatoms have an earlier origin than the Mesozoic. Some of the remarkable algal fossils observed in the Cambrian, in both well He 4 and the outcrop section of Xiao-Er-Bulak, Tarim Basin, provide possible biological evidence for this kind of inference.

  13. The ecology and biological affinity of Arctic dinoflagellates and their paleoceanographical significance in the Canadian High Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rochon, A [ISMER-UQAR, 310 allee des Ursulines, Rimouski QC, G5L 3A1 (Canada)], E-mail: Andre_rochon@uqar.qc.ca

    2009-01-01

    Dinoflagellates are eukaryotic organisms and constitute an important group of marine primary producers. Approximately 10-15% of living dinoflagellates produce a highly resistant dormant cyst that is fossilisable, and which constitute an excellent proxy indicator of the upper water column conditions and productivity. Relatively little is known on the distribution in time and space of the dinoflagellate life cycle (i.e., vegetative and cyst stages) in the Canadian Arctic; most studies usually focusing on other groups of organisms (e.g., diatoms). Here, we present information on the ecology of dinoflagellate cysts and how they relate to their counterpart plankton stages. We discuss the importance of considering the biological affinities of dinoflagellates cysts and their relevance for paleoceanographical interpretations. We also provide insight on the actual lack of such knowledge for the Canadian Arctic cyst and plankton assemblages.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Integrated assessment of oil pollution using biological monitoring and chemical fingerprinting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Ceri; Guitart, Carlos; Pook, Chris; Scarlett, Alan; Readman, James W; Galloway, Tamara S

    2010-06-01

    A full assessment of the impact of oil and chemical spills at sea requires the identification of both the polluting chemicals and the biological effects they cause. Here, a combination of chemical fingerprinting of surface oils, tissue residue analysis, and biological effects measures was used to explore the relationship between spilled oil and biological impact following the grounding of the MSC Napoli container ship in Lyme Bay, England in January 2007. Initially, oil contamination remained restricted to a surface slick in the vicinity of the wreck, and there was no chemical evidence to link biological impairment of animals (the common limpet, Patella vulgata) on the shore adjacent to the oil spill. Secondary oil contamination associated with salvage activities in July 2007 was also assessed. Chemical analyses of aliphatic hydrocarbons and terpanes in shell swabs taken from limpet shells provided an unequivocal match with the fuel oil carried by the ship. Corresponding chemical analysis of limpet tissues revealed increased concentrations of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) dominated by phenanthrene and C1 to C3 phenanthrenes with smaller contributions from heavier molecular weight PAHs. Concurrent ecotoxicological tests indicated impairment of cellular viability (p oiled animals. These results illustrate the value of combining biological monitoring with chemical fingerprinting for the rapid identification of spilled oils and their sublethal impacts on biota in situ.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 77 FR 24722 - Draft Guidance for Industry: Assessing the Effects of Significant Manufacturing Process Changes...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-04-25

    ... HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration Draft Guidance for Industry: Assessing the Effects of... Additives; Availability AGENCY: Food and Drug Administration, HHS. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: The Food and... Food Ingredients That Are Color Additives.'' The draft guidance, when finalized, will explain...

  20. [Significance of participation in programs of external quality assessment in molecular diagnostic--our experience].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paro, Mirjana Mariana Kardum; Siftar, Zoran; Juretić, Dubravka; Flegar-Mestrić, Zlata

    2011-09-01

    Harmonization of molecular diagnostic tests in laboratories in the Republic of Croatia has only just started. According to laboratory accreditation standard ISO 15189 participation in external quality assessment (EQA) schemes or programs is a prerequisite and support tool for clinical laboratory accreditation process. As there are no national quality assurance schemes yet, an European external quality assessment (EQA) scheme or program should be found. Because of variation in the molecular diagnostic test performance of clinical laboratories across Europe, EQA is recognized as a system whereby a set of reagents and techniques are assessed by an external provider making inter-laboratory performance comparability possible through already integrated recommendations and practice guidelines of molecular diagnostic test performance. Today, wide range of various EQA schemes and programs already in action have been available and most of them began within the last ten years. This paper is therefore intended to present and summarize the four-year EQA activities in the Institute of Clinical Chemistry, Merkur University Hospital, in three different international EQA schemes: United Kingdom National External Quality Assessment Scheme (UK NEQAS), the European Molecular Genetic Quality Network (EMQN) and Multi-National External Quality Assay program (EQUAL- qual)) and to point out their educational role in standardization of laboratory performance of any test intended for patient testing. from a laboratory point of view.

  1. 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.

  2. Assessment of the ecological security of immobilized enzyme remediation process with biological indicators of soil health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ying; Dong, Xiaonan; Jiang, Zhao; Cao, Bo; Ge, Shijie; Hu, Miao

    2013-08-01

    This study used the enzymes extracted from an atrazine-degrading strain, Arthrobacter sp. DNS10, which had been immobilized by sodium alginate to rehabilitate atrazine-polluted soil. Meanwhile, a range of biological indices were selected to assess the ecological health of contaminated soils and the ecological security of this bioremediation method. The results showed that there was no atrazine detected in soil samples after 28 days in EN+AT (the soil containing atrazine and immobilized enzyme) treatment. However, the residual atrazine concentration of the sample in AT (the soil containing atrazine only) treatment was about 5.02 ± 0.93 mg kg(-1). These results suggest that the immobilized enzyme exhibits an excellent ability in atrazine degradation. Furthermore, the immobilized enzyme could relieve soil microbial biomass carbon and soil microbial respiration intensity to 772.33 ± 34.93 mg C kg(-1) and 5.01 ± 0.17 mg CO(2) g(-1) soil h(-1), respectively. The results of the polymerase chain reaction-degeneration gradient gel electrophoresis experiment indicated that the immobilized enzyme also could make the Shannon-Wiener index and evenness index of the soil sample increase from 1.02 and 0.74 to 1.51 and 0.84, respectively. These results indicated that the immobilized enzymes not only could relieve the impact from atrazine on the soil, but also revealed that the immobilized enzymes did no significant harm on the soil ecological health.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. A Comparison of Two Low-Stakes Methods for Administering a Program-Level Biology Concept Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couch, Brian A; Knight, Jennifer K

    2015-12-01

    Concept assessments are used commonly in undergraduate science courses to assess student learning and diagnose areas of student difficulty. While most concept assessments align with the content of individual courses or course topics, some concept assessments have been developed for use at the programmatic level to gauge student progress and achievement over a series of courses or an entire major. The broad scope of a program-level assessment, which exceeds the content of any single course, creates several test administration issues, including finding a suitable time for students to take the assessment and adequately incentivizing student participation. These logistical considerations must also be weighed against test security and the ability of students to use unauthorized resources that could compromise test validity. To understand how potential administration methods affect student outcomes, we administered the Molecular Biology Capstone Assessment (MBCA) to three pairs of matched upper-division courses in two ways: an online assessment taken by students outside of class and a paper-based assessment taken during class. We found that overall test scores were not significantly different and that individual item difficulties were highly correlated between these two administration methods. However, in-class administration resulted in reduced completion rates of items at the end of the assessment. Taken together, these results suggest that an online, outside-of-class administration produces scores that are comparable to a paper-based, in-class format and has the added advantages that instructors do not have to dedicate class time and students are more likely to complete the entire assessment.

  6. 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.

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

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

    2011-01-01

    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.

  8. Suicide Risk Assessments: Which Suicide Risk Factors Psychiatric Residents Consider Significant?

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Sheng-Min; Hwang, Sunyoung; Yeon, Bora; Choi, Kyoung Ho; Oh, Youngmin; Lee, Hae-Kook; Kweon, Yong-Sil; Lee, Chung Tai; Lee, Kyoung-Uk

    2015-01-01

    Objective Patients visiting the emergency department (ED) after a suicide attempt are generally assessed for suicide risk by psychiatric residents. Psychiatric residents' competence in evaluating the risk posed by the patients who attempted suicide is critical to preventing suicide. Methods We investigated factors considered important by psychiatric residents when evaluating suicide risk. This study included 140 patients admitted to the ED after attempting suicide. Psychiatric residents rated...

  9. Assessment of biological variation and analytical imprecision of CA 125, CEA, and TPA in relation to monitoring of ovarian cancer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tuxen, M K; Sölétormos, G; Petersen, P H

    1999-01-01

    biological variation. The aim of the study was to assess (i) the analytical imprecision (CVA) and the average inherent intra- and interindividual biological variation (CVTI and CVG, respectively) for CA 125, CEA, and TPA in a group of healthy women; (ii) the significance of changes in serial results of each...... marker; and (iii) the index of individuality. METHODS: The study group consisted of 31 healthy women. Sixteen blood samples from each subject were collected in four series over a period of approximately 1 year. Data analysis was based on ANOVA. The index of individuality was calculated as ((CV2A + CV2TI......)/CV2G)1/2 and the critical difference for a change between two consecutive concentrations as radical2xZx(CV2P + CV2A + CV2TI)1/2 (Z = 1.65 for unidirectional and 1.96 for bidirectional changes, P

  10. 76 FR 60557 - Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a License Amendment to...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-29

    ... this amendment. The NRC evaluated whether there are significant environment impacts related to the... contaminated waste and soil from known and suspected burial sites as well as contamination beneath...

  11. 77 FR 66874 - Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-11-07

    ... of soil liquefaction, where soil liquefaction is the process of water pressure increasing in the soil due to cyclic shaking with an associated significant decrease in soil strength. The results from...

  12. Clinical significance of cumulative biological effective dose and overall treatment time in the treatment of carcinoma cervix

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mandal Abhijit

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this retrospective study is to report the radiotherapy treatment response of, and complications in, patients with cervical cancer on the basis of cumulative biologic effective dose (BED and overall treatment time (OTT. Sixty-four (stage II - 35/64; stage III - 29/64 patients of cervical cancer were treated with combination of external beam radiotherapy (EBRT and low dose rate intracavitary brachytherapy (ICBT. The cumulative BED was calculated at Point A (BED 10 ; and bladder, rectal reference points (BED 2.5 using the linear-quadratic BED equations. The local control (LC rate and 5-year disease-free survival (DFS rate in patients of stage II were comparable for BED 10 < 84.5 and BED 10 > 84.5 but were much higher for BED 10 > 84.5 than BED 10 < 84.5 ( P < 0.01 in stage III patients. In the stage II patients, The LC rate and 5-year DFS rate were comparable for OTT < 50 days and for OTT> 50 days but were much higher in stage III patients with OTT < 50 than OTT> 50 days ( P < 0.001. It was also observed that patients who received BED 2.5 < 105 had lesser rectal ( P < 0.001 and bladder complications than BED 2.5 > 105. Higher rectal complication-free survival (CFS R rate, bladder complication-free survival (CFS B rate and all-type late complication-free survival rate were observed in patients who received BED 2.5 < 105 than BED 2.5 > 105. A balanced, optimal and justified radiotherapy treatment schedule to deliver higher BED 10 (>84.5 and lower BED 2.5 (< 105 in lesser OTT (< 50 days is essential in carcinoma cervix to expect a better treatment outcome in all respects.

  13. 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.

  14. Significance of assess the iron reserves of severe renal anemia patients before and after blood transfusion

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Gui-Fen Zhang

    2015-01-01

    Objective:To study the significance of evaluating hemoglobin and iron reserves in the severe renal anemia patient before and after blood transfusion, to guide clinical treatment.Methods:Simple randomly selected 120 patients in phase 5 of chronic renal failure from the department of nephrology, who are regular dialysis with severe renal anemia, according to the situation of iron reserves before blood transfusion, patients will be divided into its reserves of iron deficiency and iron overload group and normal group, and the three groups were divided into 1 U and 2 U group. Comparing the change of different unit quantity of hemoglobin, serum iron, iron, protein and total iron binding force before and after blood transfusion and variation is compared between groups.Results: Three groups of patients with 1U blood transfusion ,Hemoglobin, serum iron and ferritin, total iron binding force, transferrin saturation are higher before a blood transfusion,The differences were statistically significant; before and after blood transfusion hemoglobin, serum iron and ferritin, total iron binding force, transferrin saturation change in 1 U group normal iron reserves compared with Insufficient iron reserves 1 U group has no statistically significant difference, iron overload 1 U group before and after blood transfusion hemoglobin, serum iron and ferritin, total iron binding force, transferrin saturation change significantly greater than Insufficient iron reserves 1 U group and 1U with normal iron reserves group, the differences were statistically significant; Three groups of patients blood transfusion after 2 U, hemoglobin, serum iron and ferritin, total iron binding force, transferrin saturation were higher before a blood transfusion, differences were statistically significant; iron overload 2 U group before and after blood transfusion hemoglobin, serum iron and ferritin, total iron binding force, transferrin saturation change significantly greater than Insufficient iron reserves 2

  15. Airway remodeling assessed by high-resolution computed tomography in patients with asthma:relationship to biological markers in induced sputum

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    吴世满

    2013-01-01

    Objective To explore the significance of assessing asthma control by high-resolution computed tomography(HRCT) and biological markers in induced sputum.Methods Forty-eight patients with asthma(asthma group) and 10 healthy subjects(control group) were retrospectively analyzed.

  16. Phosphorus recycling potential assessment by a biological test applied to wastewater sludge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braak, Etienne; Auby, Sarah; Piveteau, Simon; Guilayn, Felipe; Daumer, Marie-Line

    2016-01-01

    Phosphorus (P) recycling as mineral fertilizer from wastewater activated sludge (WAS) depends on the amount that can be dissolved and separated from the organic matter before the final crystallization step. The aim of the biological phosphorus dissolution potential (BPDP) test developed here was to assess the maximum amount of P that could be biologically released from WAS prior that the liquid phase enters the recovery process. It was first developed for sludge combining enhanced biological phosphorus removal and iron chloride. Because carbohydrates are known to induce acidification during the first stage of anaerobic digestion, sucrose was used as a co-substrate. Best results were obtained after 24-48 h, without inoculum, with a sugar/sludge ratio of 0.5 gCOD/gVS and under strict anaerobic conditions. Up to 75% of the total phosphorus in sludge from a wastewater treatment plant combining enhanced biological phosphorus removal and iron chloride phosphorus removal could be dissolved. Finally, the test was applied to assess BPDP from different sludge using alum compounds for P removal. No dissolution was observed when alum polychloride was used and less than 20% when alum sulphate was used. In all the cases, comparison to chemical acidification showed that the biological process was a major contributor to P dissolution. The possibility to crystallize struvite was discussed from the composition of the liquids obtained. The BPDP will be used not only to assess the potential for phosphorus recycling from sludge, but also to study the influence of the co-substrates available for anaerobic digestion of sludge.

  17. Significance of peribiliary oedema on computed tomography in diagnosis and severity assessment of acute cholangitis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Akaike, Gensuke [Department of Radiology, St. Luke' s International Hospital (Japan); Ishiyama, Mitsutomi, E-mail: issie1009@yahoo.co.jp [Department of Radiology, St. Luke' s International Hospital (Japan); Suzuki, Shoko [Department of Gastroenterology, Japan Red Cross Musashino Hospital (Japan); Fujita, Yoshiyuki [Department of Gastroenterology, St. Luke' s International Hospital (Japan); Ohde, Sachiko [Center for Clinical Epidemiology, St. Luke' s Life Science Institute (Japan); Saida, Yukihisa [Department of Radiology, St. Luke' s International Hospital (Japan)

    2013-09-15

    Objectives: To evaluate usefulness of peribiliary oedema on computed tomography (CT) in diagnosing acute cholangitis and assessing its severity. Materials and methods: Sixty patients (male 59%, mean age 67.3 years) who underwent endoscopic retrograde biliary drainage (ERBD) for suspected biliary obstruction within 6 h after contrast-enhanced CT were evaluated. Two radiologists performed a consensus evaluation of CT for the presence of peribiliary oedema. Patients were divided into the cholangitis group and the non-cholangitis group based on clinical and ERBD findings, and CT results were compared between the two groups. In the cholangitis group, laboratory values and blood culture results were compared between those with and without peribiliary oedema. Chi-squared test was used for analyses. Results: Of 60 enrolled patients, there were 46 patients in the cholangitis group and 14 patients in the non-cholangitis group. Peribiliary oedema was seen in 24/46 (52.2%) patients in the cholangitis group and 3/14 (23.3%) patients in the non-cholangitis group (p = 0.043). In the cholangitis group, positive blood culture was seen in 12/24 (50%) patients with peribiliary oedema and 4/22 (18.1%) patients without it (p = 0.03). Conclusions: Peribiliary oedema appears to be useful for diagnosis and severity assessment of acute cholangitis.

  18. Significance of model credibility in estimating climate projection distributions for regional hydroclimatological risk assessments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brekke, L.D.; Dettinger, M.D.; Maurer, E.P.; Anderson, M.

    2008-01-01

    Ensembles of historical climate simulations and climate projections from the World Climate Research Programme's (WCRP's) Coupled Model Intercomparison Project phase 3 (CMIP3) multi-model dataset were investigated to determine how model credibility affects apparent relative scenario likelihoods in regional risk assessments. Methods were developed and applied in a Northern California case study. An ensemble of 59 twentieth century climate simulations from 17 WCRP CMIP3 models was analyzed to evaluate relative model credibility associated with a 75-member projection ensemble from the same 17 models. Credibility was assessed based on how models realistically reproduced selected statistics of historical climate relevant to California climatology. Metrics of this credibility were used to derive relative model weights leading to weight-threshold culling of models contributing to the projection ensemble. Density functions were then estimated for two projected quantities (temperature and precipitation), with and without considering credibility-based ensemble reductions. An analysis for Northern California showed that, while some models seem more capable at recreating limited aspects twentieth century climate, the overall tendency is for comparable model performance when several credibility measures are combined. Use of these metrics to decide which models to include in density function development led to local adjustments to function shapes, but led to limited affect on breadth and central tendency, which were found to be more influenced by 'completeness' of the original ensemble in terms of models and emissions pathways. ?? 2007 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  19. 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.

  20. RELEVANCE OF CROP BIOLOGY FOR ENVIRONMENTAL RISK ASSESSMENT OF GENETICALLY MODIFIED CROPS IN AFRICA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olalekan eAkinbo

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Knowledge about the crop biology of economic crops in Africa is needed for regulators to accurately review dossiers and conduct comprehensive environmental risk assessments (ERA. This information allows regulators to decide whether biotech crops present a risk to biodiversity, since crossing between domesticated crops and their wild relatives could affect the adaptations of the wild species. The criteria that should be used in the evaluation of African crops for environmental risk assessment (ERA include: growth habit, centre of origin, centre of genetic diversity, proximity of wild relatives, inter-fertility, mode of pollen dispersal, length of pollen viability, mating system, invasiveness, weediness, mode of propagation, mode of seed dispersal and length of seed dormancy. In this paper, we discuss the crops being genetic engineered in Africa and describe the crop biology of those with native relatives.

  1. 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…

  2. 78 FR 17383 - Notice of Availability of Environmental Assessment and Draft Finding of No Significant Impact...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-03-21

    ... Significant Impact Regarding DLA Energy's Mobility Fuel Purchasing Programs AGENCY: Defense Logistics Agency... implementation of a systemic change to the use of commercial standard Jet A aviation fuel in most aircraft could... proposed action, DLA would continue using existing commercial methods for fuel distribution; any...

  3. A Critical Assessment of Null Hypothesis Significance Testing in Quantitative Communication Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levine, Timothy R.; Weber, Rene; Hullett, Craig; Park, Hee Sun; Lindsey, Lisa L. Massi

    2008-01-01

    Null hypothesis significance testing (NHST) is the most widely accepted and frequently used approach to statistical inference in quantitative communication research. NHST, however, is highly controversial, and several serious problems with the approach have been identified. This paper reviews NHST and the controversy surrounding it. Commonly…

  4. 76 FR 71619 - Availability of the Final Environmental Assessment (EA) and Finding of No Significant Impact...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-18

    ... concluded that there would be no significant short-term, long-term, or cumulative effects to the environment... discussion of existing SpaceX activities. The resource areas considered in the Final EA include air quality..., and cultural resources; hazardous materials, pollution prevention, and solid waste; light...

  5. Relevance of Crop Biology for Environmental Risk Assessment of Genetically Modified Crops in Africa

    OpenAIRE

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge about the crop biology of economic crops in Africa is needed for regulators to accurately review dossiers and conduct comprehensive environmental risk assessments (ERAs). This information allows regulators to decide whether biotech crops present a risk to biodiversity, since crossing between domesticated crops and their wild relatives could affect the adaptations of the wild species. The criteria that should be used in the evaluation of African crops for ERA include growth habit, ce...

  6. RELEVANCE OF CROP BIOLOGY FOR ENVIRONMENTAL RISK ASSESSMENT OF GENETICALLY MODIFIED CROPS IN AFRICA

    OpenAIRE

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge about the crop biology of economic crops in Africa is needed for regulators to accurately review dossiers and conduct comprehensive environmental risk assessments (ERA). This information allows regulators to decide whether biotech crops present a risk to biodiversity, since crossing between domesticated crops and their wild relatives could affect the adaptations of the wild species. The criteria that should be used in the evaluation of African crops for environmental risk assessmen...

  7. Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact - Mckay Bypass Canal Extension

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    N/A

    1998-09-01

    The Department of Energy (DOE) has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) (DOE/EA-1262) to extend the McKay Bypass Canal on the east side of the Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site (Site), located north of Golden, Colorado. The McKay Bypass Canal Extension (Extension) is needed to route water from the existing canal around the Walnut Creek drainage, thus preventing potential co-mingling of Broomfield city water (collected from the Coal Creek drainage) with Site runoff water. The EA describes and analyzes the environmental effects of the Proposed Action (using a buried pipeline for the extension), and the alternatives of taking no action, using an open ditch for the extension, and using an aboveground pipeline for the extension. The EA was the subject of a public comment period from July 22 to August 6, 1998. Written comments regarding the EA were received from the City of Broomfield and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

  8. Combining Density and Overlap (CoDO): A New Method for Assessing the Significance of Overlap Among Subgraphs

    CERN Document Server

    Magner, Abram; Grama, Ananth

    2016-01-01

    Algorithms for detecting clusters (including overlapping clusters) in graphs have received significant attention in the research community. A closely related important aspect of the problem -- quantification of statistical significance of overlap of clusters, remains relatively unexplored. This paper presents the first theoretical and practical results on quantifying statistically significant interactions between clusters in networks. Such problems commonly arise in diverse applications, ranging from social network analysis to systems biology. The paper addresses the problem of quantifying the statistical significance of the observed overlap of the two clusters in an Erd\\H{o}s-R\\'enyi graph model. The analytical framework presented in the paper assigns a $p$-value to overlapping subgraphs by combining information about both the sizes of the subgraphs and their edge densities in comparison to the corresponding values for their overlapping component. This $p$-value is demonstrated to have excellent discriminati...

  9. 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.

  10. Prognostic and biologic significance of DNMT3B expression in older patients with cytogenetically normal primary acute myeloid leukemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niederwieser, C; Kohlschmidt, J; Volinia, S; Whitman, S P; Metzeler, K H; Eisfeld, A-K; Maharry, K; Yan, P; Frankhouser, D; Becker, H; Schwind, S; Carroll, A J; Nicolet, D; Mendler, J H; Curfman, J P; Wu, Y-Z; Baer, M R; Powell, B L; Kolitz, J E; Moore, J O; Carter, T H; Bundschuh, R; Larson, R A; Stone, R M; Mrózek, K; Marcucci, G; Bloomfield, C D

    2015-03-01

    DNMT3B encodes a DNA methyltransferase implicated in aberrant epigenetic changes contributing to leukemogenesis. We tested whether DNMT3B expression, measured by NanoString nCounter assay, associates with outcome, gene and microRNA expression and DNA methylation profiles in 210 older (⩾60 years) adults with primary, cytogenetically normal acute myeloid leukemia (CN-AML). Patients were dichotomized into high versus low expressers using median cut. Outcomes were assessed in the context of known CN-AML prognosticators. Gene and microRNA expression, and DNA methylation profiles were analyzed using microarrays and MethylCap-sequencing, respectively. High DNMT3B expressers had fewer complete remissions (CR; P=0.002) and shorter disease-free (DFS; P=0.02) and overall (OS; PDNMT3B expression remained an independent predictor of lower CR rates (P=0.04) and shorter DFS (P=0.04) and OS (P=0.001). High DNMT3B expression associated with a gene expression profile comprising 363 genes involved in differentiation, proliferation and survival pathways, but with only four differentially expressed microRNAs (miR-133b, miR-148a, miR-122, miR-409-3p) and no differential DNA methylation regions. We conclude that high DNMT3B expression independently associates with adverse outcome in older CN-AML patients. Gene expression analyses suggest that DNMT3B is involved in the modulation of several genes, although the regulatory mechanisms remain to be investigated to devise therapeutic approaches specific for these patients.

  11. 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.

  12. Significance of hydrological model choice and land use changes when doing climate change impact assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bjørnholt Karlsson, Ida; Obel Sonnenborg, Torben; Refsgaard, Jens Christian; Høgh Jensen, Karsten

    2014-05-01

    Uncertainty in impact studies arises both from Global Climate Models (GCM), emission projections, statistical downscaling, Regional Climate Models (RCM), hydrological models and calibration techniques (Refsgaard et al. 2013). Some of these uncertainties have been evaluated several times in the literature; however few studies have investigated the effect of hydrological model choice on the assessment results (Boorman & Sefton 1997; Jiang et al. 2007; Bastola et al. 2011). These studies have found that model choice results in large differences, up to 70%, in the predicted discharge changes depending on the climate input. The objective of the study is to investigate the impact of climate change on hydrology of the Odense catchment, Denmark both in response to (a) different climate projections (GCM-RCM combinations); (b) different hydrological models and (c) different land use scenarios. This includes: 1. Separation of the climate model signal; the hydrological model signal and the land use signal 2. How do the different hydrological components react under different climate and land use conditions for the different models 3. What land use scenario seems to provide the best adaptation for the challenges of the different future climate change scenarios from a hydrological perspective? Four climate models from the ENSEMBLES project (Hewitt & Griggs 2004): ECHAM5 - HIRHAM5, ECHAM5 - RCA3, ARPEGE - RM5.1 and HadCM3 - HadRM3 are used, assessing the climate change impact in three periods: 1991-2010 (present), 2041-2060 (near future) and 2081-2100 (far future). The four climate models are used in combination with three hydrological models with different conceptual layout: NAM, SWAT and MIKE SHE. Bastola, S., C. Murphy and J. Sweeney (2011). "The role of hydrological modelling uncertainties in climate change impact assessments of Irish river catchments." Advances in Water Resources 34: 562-576. Boorman, D. B. and C. E. M. Sefton (1997). "Recognising the uncertainty in the

  13. [The social hygienic assessment of significance of diseases under organization of ambulatory polyclinic care].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babenko, A I; Murakhovskiy, A G; Tomtchuk, A A; Bravve, Yu I

    2013-01-01

    The article presents the results of analysis of appealability of adult population of Omsk to municipal polyclinic on the subject of diseases. The coefficients of relative importance of different classes of diseases to determine the groups af their significance were calculated on the basis of integrated evaluation of common and primary morbidity and diseases of patients under dispensarization monitoring. The established character of formation of flows of appealabiliy of population on the subject of diseases is a basic one to determine demand in medical technologies and planning of activities of ambulatory polyclinic section of health care.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunger, Christina; Krause, Lena; Hilzinger, Rebecca; Ditzen, Beate; Schweitzer, Jochen

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:27764109

  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. The significance of biological, environmental, and social risk factors for prostate cancer in a cohort study in Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frederico R. Romero

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Purpose To evaluate the significance of several risk factors for prostate cancer in a cohort of Brazilian men. Subjects and methods: Men ≥ 40 years-old participating in a prostate cancer screening program between December 2006 and April 2011 in the city of Curitiba, Brazil, were evaluated to determine the prevalence, relative risk (RR and 95% CI of prostate cancer according to age, race, ethnicity, family history of prostate cancer, educational level, and history of vasectomy, increased blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, and urethritis. Results In 2121 men included in this study, prostate cancer prevalence was 0.6% for men between 40-49 years versus 2.0% (adjusted RR = 2.58, 7.7% (adjusted RR = 5.76, and 8.4% (adjusted RR = 4.88 for men 50-59 years, 60-69 years, and ≥ 70 years, respectively (p 0.05; 6.1% in African descendants, in comparison to 3.0% in non-African descendants (adjusted RR = 3.17, p 0.05; and 4.8% in participants with incomplete elementary school level or lower, compared to 2.2% in men with complete elementary school level or higher education (adjusted RR = 1.85, p > 0.05. Men with/without history of vasectomy, increased blood pressure, diabetes, and urethritis had a prostate cancer prevalence of 0.8%/3.0% (adjusted RR = 0.23, p > 0.05, 3.8%/2.2% (adjusted RR = 1.16, p > 0.05, 3.7%/2.6% (adjusted RR = 1.39, p > 0.05, and 2.6%/2.6% (adjusted RR = 0.99, p > 0.05, respectively. Conclusions Risk factors associated with an increased prevalence of prostate cancer in this cohort included increasing age and African ethnicity.

  19. 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.

  20. Win percentage: a novel measure for assessing the suitability of machine classifiers for biological problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background Selecting an appropriate classifier for a particular biological application poses a difficult problem for researchers and practitioners alike. In particular, choosing a classifier depends heavily on the features selected. For high-throughput biomedical datasets, feature selection is often a preprocessing step that gives an unfair advantage to the classifiers built with the same modeling assumptions. In this paper, we seek classifiers that are suitable to a particular problem independent of feature selection. We propose a novel measure, called "win percentage", for assessing the suitability of machine classifiers to a particular problem. We define win percentage as the probability a classifier will perform better than its peers on a finite random sample of feature sets, giving each classifier equal opportunity to find suitable features. Results First, we illustrate the difficulty in evaluating classifiers after feature selection. We show that several classifiers can each perform statistically significantly better than their peers given the right feature set among the top 0.001% of all feature sets. We illustrate the utility of win percentage using synthetic data, and evaluate six classifiers in analyzing eight microarray datasets representing three diseases: breast cancer, multiple myeloma, and neuroblastoma. After initially using all Gaussian gene-pairs, we show that precise estimates of win percentage (within 1%) can be achieved using a smaller random sample of all feature pairs. We show that for these data no single classifier can be considered the best without knowing the feature set. Instead, win percentage captures the non-zero probability that each classifier will outperform its peers based on an empirical estimate of performance. Conclusions Fundamentally, we illustrate that the selection of the most suitable classifier (i.e., one that is more likely to perform better than its peers) not only depends on the dataset and application but also on the

  1. Safety assessment and biological effects of a new cold processed SilEmulsion for dermatological purpose.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raposo, Sara; Salgado, Ana; Gonçalves, Lídia; Pinto, Pedro C; Urbano, Manuela; Ribeiro, Helena M

    2013-01-01

    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.

  2. 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.

  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.

  4. 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...

  5. 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 know

  6. Clinical significance of visceral adiposity assessed by computed tomography: A Japanese perspective

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Miwa; Ryo; Ken; Kishida; Tadashi; Nakamura; Tohru; Yoshizumi; Tohru; Funahashi; Iichiro; Shimomura

    2014-01-01

    Abdominal obesity,rather than total amount of fat,is linked to obesity-related disorders.Visceral adiposity is an important component of obesity-related disorders in Japanese individuals with a mild degree of adiposity compared with Western subjects.In 1983,our group reported techniques for body fat analysis using computed tomography(CT)and established the concept of visceral fat obesity in which intra-abdominal fat accumulation is an important factor in the development of obesity-related complications,such as diabetes,lipid disorders,hypertension and atherosclerosis.Our group also established ideal imaging conditions for determining abdominal fat area at the umbilical level CT scan.Visceral fat area(VFA)measured in a single slice at L4level correlated significantly with the total abdominal visceral fat volume measured on multislice CT scan.In a large-scale study of a Japanese population,the mean number of obesity-related cardiovascular risk factors(hypertension,low high-density lipoprotein cholesterolemia and/or hypertriglyceridemia,and hyperglycemia)was greater than 1.0 at 100 cm2 of VFA,irrespective of gender,age and body mass index.Our group also demonstrated that reduction of visceral fat accumulation subsequent to voluntary lifestyle modification,"Hokenshido",correlated with a decrease in the number of obesity-related cardiovascular risk factors.It is important to select the most appropriate subjects from the general population(e.g.,non-obese subjects with a cluster of risk factors for the metabolic syndrome)that are most suitable for body weight reduction,with the goal of preventing atherosclerotic cardiovascular diseases.

  7. 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

  8. 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;

    : Tools for the Assessment of Ecosystem Health, 2009-2011), which is part of the Baltic Sea BONUS+ Programme funded jointly by national funding agencies and FP7 ERA-NET+ of the European Commission. The BEAST project consists of three workpackages (WP) with the following main tasks: WP1- Field studies...... and experiments in selected sub-regions of the Baltic Sea, WP2 - Application and validation of methods in monitoring and assessment in the Baltic Sea, and WP3 - Developing tools for ecosystem health assessment in the Baltic Sea. BEAST research activities are focused in the sub-regions of Gulf of Bothnia, Gulf...... 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...

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Using chemical biology to assess and modulate mitochondria: progress and challenges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Michael P.

    2017-01-01

    Our understanding of the role of mitochondria in biomedical sciences has expanded considerably over the past decade. In addition to their well-known metabolic roles, mitochondrial are also central to signalling for various processes through the generation of signals such as ROS and metabolites that affect cellular homeostasis, as well as other processes such as cell death and inflammation. Thus, mitochondrial function and dysfunction are central to the health and fate of the cell. Consequently, there is considerable interest in better understanding and assessing the many roles of mitochondria. Furthermore, there is also a growing realization that mitochondrial are a promising drug target in a wide range of pathologies. The application of interdisciplinary approaches at the interface between chemistry and biology are opening up new opportunities to understand mitochondrial function and in assessing the role of the organelle in biology. This work and the experience thus gained are leading to the development of new classes of therapies. Here, we overview the progress that has been made to date on exploring the chemical biology of the organelle and then focus on future challenges and opportunities that face this rapidly developing field. PMID:28382206

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Assessing Vermont's stream health and biological integrity using artificial neural networks and Bayesian methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rizzo, D. M.; Fytilis, N.; Stevens, L.

    2012-12-01

    Environmental managers are increasingly required to monitor and forecast long-term effects and vulnerability of biophysical systems to human-generated stresses. Ideally, a study involving both physical and biological assessments conducted concurrently (in space and time) could provide a better understanding of the mechanisms and complex relationships. However, costs and resources associated with monitoring the complex linkages between the physical, geomorphic and habitat conditions and the biological integrity of stream reaches are prohibitive. Researchers have used classification techniques to place individual streams and rivers into a broader spatial context (hydrologic or health condition). Such efforts require environmental managers to gather multiple forms of information - quantitative, qualitative and subjective. We research and develop a novel classification tool that combines self-organizing maps with a Naïve Bayesian classifier to direct resources to stream reaches most in need. The Vermont Agency of Natural Resources has developed and adopted protocols for physical stream geomorphic and habitat assessments throughout the state of Vermont. Separate from these assessments, the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation monitors the biological communities and the water quality in streams. Our initial hypothesis is that the geomorphic reach assessments and water quality data may be leveraged to reduce error and uncertainty associated with predictions of biological integrity and stream health. We test our hypothesis using over 2500 Vermont stream reaches (~1371 stream miles) assessed by the two agencies. In the development of this work, we combine a Naïve Bayesian classifier with a modified Kohonen Self-Organizing Map (SOM). The SOM is an unsupervised artificial neural network that autonomously analyzes inherent dataset properties using input data only. It is typically used to cluster data into similar categories when a priori classes do not exist. The

  16. 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 greater than 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…

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ines Braga Goncalves

    Full Text Available 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.

  18. Exposure factors for marine eutrophication impacts assessment based on a mechanistic biological model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cosme, Nuno Miguel Dias; Koski, Marja; Hauschild, Michael Zwicky

    2015-01-01

    ). This pathway is typical of marine eutrophication. A model is proposed to mechanistically estimate the response of coastal marine ecosystems to N inputs. It addresses the biological processes of nutrient-limited primary production (PP), metazoan consumption, and bacterial degradation, in four distinct sinking...... is essential to estimate a marine eutrophication impacts indicator in Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA) of anthropogenic-N emissions. Every relevant process was modelled and the uncertainty of the driving parameters considered low suggesting valid applicability in characterisation modelling in LCIA....

  19. Biological shielding assessment and dose rate calculation for a neutron inspection portal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donzella, A.; Bonomi, G.; Giroletti, E.; Zenoni, A.

    2012-04-01

    With reference to the prototype of neutron inspection portal built and successfully tested in the Rijeka seaport (Croatia) within the EURITRACK (EURopean Illicit Trafficking Countermeasures Kit) project, an assessment of the biological shielding in different set-up configurations of a future portal has been calculated with MCNP Monte Carlo code in the frame of the Eritr@C (European Riposte against Illicit TR@ffiCking) project. In the configurations analyzed the compliance with the dose limits for workers and the population stated by the European legislation is provided by appropriate shielding of the neutron sources and by the delimitation of a controlled area.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. REVIEW OF SELECTED BIOLOGICAL METHODS OF ASSESSING THE QUALITY OF NATURAL ENVIRONMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monika Beata Jakubus

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The xenobiotics introduced into the environment are the effect of human activities. It is especially soil contamination that leads to degradation of soils, which may finally be referred to the biological imbalance of the ecosystem. Normally chemical methods are used for the assessment of soil’s quality. Unfortunately, they are not always quick and inexpensive. Therefore, the practice and the science at environmental monitoring more frequently employ biological methods. Most of them meet the above mentioned conditions and become a supplement of routine laboratory practices. This publication shows an overview of selected common biological methods used to estimate the quality of the environment. The first part of the paper presents biomonitoring as a first step of environmental control which relies on the observation of indicator organisms. The next section was dedicated to the bioassays, indicating the greater or lesser practical applications confirmed by literature on the subject. Particular attention has been focused on phytotests and the tests based on the invertebrates.

  5. 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.

  6. 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)

  7. The Development and Implementation of an Instrument to Assess Students’ Data Analysis Skills in Molecular Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian J. Rybarczyk

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Developing visual literacy skills is an important component of scientific literacy in undergraduate science education.  Comprehension, analysis, and interpretation are parts of visual literacy that describe related data analysis skills important for learning in the biological sciences. The Molecular Biology Data Analysis Test (MBDAT was developed to measure students’ data analysis skills connected with scientific reasoning when analyzing and interpreting scientific data generated from experimental research.  The skills analyzed included basic skills such as identification of patterns and trends in data and connecting a method that generated the data and advanced skills such as distinguishing positive and negative controls, synthesizing conclusions, determining if data supports a hypothesis, and predicting alternative or next-step experiments.  Construct and content validity were established and calculated statistical parameters demonstrate that the MBDAT is valid and reliable for measuring students’ data analysis skills in molecular and cell biology contexts.  The instrument also measures students’ perceived confidence in their data interpretation abilities.  As scientific research continues to evolve in complexity, interpretation of scientific information in visual formats will continue to be an important component of scientific literacy.  Thus science education will need to support and assess students’ development of these skills as part of students’ scientific training.

  8. 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.

  9. Design Tools to Assess Hydro-Turbine Biological Performance: Priest Rapids Dam Turbine Replacement Project

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Richmond, Marshall C.; Rakowski, Cynthia L.; Serkowski, John A.; Strickler, Brad; Weisbeck, Molly; Dotson, Curtis L.

    2013-06-25

    Over the past two decades, there have been many studies describing injury mechanisms associated with turbine passage, the response of various fish species to these mechanisms, and the probability of survival through dams. Although developing tools to design turbines that improve passage survival has been difficult and slow, a more robust quantification of the turbine environment has emerged through integrating physical model data, fish survival data, and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) studies. Grant County Public Utility District (GCPUD) operates the Priest Rapids Dam (PRD), a hydroelectric facility on the Columbia River in Washington State. The dam contains 10 Kaplan-type turbine units that are now almost 50 years old. The Utility District plans to refit all of these aging turbines with new turbines. The Columbia River at PRD is a migratory pathway for several species of juvenile and adult salmonids, so passage of fish through the dam is a major consideration when replacing the turbines. In this presentation, a method for turbine biological performance assessment (BioPA) is introduced. Using this method, a suite of biological performance indicators is computed based on simulated data from a CFD model of a proposed turbine design. Each performance indicator is a measure of the probability of exposure to a certain dose of an injury mechanism. Using known relationships between the dose of an injury mechanism and frequency of injury (dose–response) from laboratory or field studies, the likelihood of fish injury for a turbine design can be computed from the performance indicator. By comparing the values of the indicators from proposed designs, the engineer can identify the more-promising alternatives. We will present application of the BioPA method for baseline risk assessment calculations for the existing Kaplan turbines at PRD that will be used as the minimum biological performance that a proposed new design must achieve.

  10. Lead Assessment in Biological Samples of Children with Different Gastrointestinal Disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah, Faheem; Ullah, Naeem; Kazi, Tasneem Gul; Khan, Ajmal; Kandhro, Ghulam Abbas; Afridi, Hassan Imran; Arain, Mohammad Balal; Khan, Zahid; Farooq, Umar

    2016-01-01

    Lead (Pb) levels have been evaluated in the biological samples of children with different gastrointestinal disorders. Blood, scalp hair, and urine samples of children (of age 4-10 years) complaining about different gastrointestinal disorders were analyzed. For comparison, age matched healthy subjects were also included in this study. Biological samples were digested in a microwave oven prior to Pb determination by graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometry. Significant differences in Pb profile were found between the diseased and referent children. Elevated Pb contents were observed in case of diseased children than WHO permissible limit, while normal results were obtained for healthy referents. The results were compared with those of healthy children having the same age, socioeconomic status, and residential areas.

  11. 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.

  12. All correlations must die: Assessing the significance of a stochastic gravitational-wave background in pulsar-timing arrays

    CERN Document Server

    Taylor, S R; Babak, S; Brem, P; Gair, J R; Sesana, A; Vecchio, A

    2016-01-01

    We present two methods for determining the significance of a stochastic gravitational-wave background affecting a pulsar-timing array, where detection is based on recovering evidence for correlations between different pulsars, i.e. spatial correlations. Nulling these spatial correlations is crucial to understanding the response of our detection statistic under the null hypothesis so that we can properly assess the significance of plausible signals. The usual approach of creating many noise-only simulations is, albeit useful, undesirable since in that case detection significance is predicated on our (incomplete) understanding of all noise processes. Alternatively, destroying any possible correlations in our real datasets and using those (containing all actual noise features) is a much superior approach. In our first method, we perform random phase shifts in the signal-model basis functions, which has the effect of eliminating signal phase coherence between pulsars, while keeping the statistical properties of t...

  13. Food Classification Systems Based on Food Processing: Significance and Implications for Policies and Actions: A Systematic Literature Review and Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moubarac, Jean-Claude; Parra, Diana C; Cannon, Geoffrey; Monteiro, Carlos A

    2014-06-01

    This paper is the first to make a systematic review and assessment of the literature that attempts methodically to incorporate food processing into classification of diets. The review identified 1276 papers, of which 110 were screened and 21 studied, derived from five classification systems. This paper analyses and assesses the five systems, one of which has been devised and developed by a research team that includes co-authors of this paper. The quality of the five systems is assessed and scored according to how specific, coherent, clear, comprehensive and workable they are. Their relevance to food, nutrition and health, and their use in various settings, is described. The paper shows that the significance of industrial food processing in shaping global food systems and supplies and thus dietary patterns worldwide, and its role in the pandemic of overweight and obesity, remains overlooked and underestimated. Once food processing is systematically incorporated into food classifications, they will be more useful in assessing and monitoring dietary patterns. Food classification systems that emphasize industrial food processing, and that define and distinguish relevant different types of processing, will improve understanding of how to prevent and control overweight, obesity and related chronic non-communicable diseases, and also malnutrition. They will also be a firmer basis for rational policies and effective actions designed to protect and improve public health at all levels from global to local.

  14. 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

  15. Teacher Assessment of A-Level Biology Practical Notebooks--The Development of a System of Moderation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kingdom, J. M.; Hartley, D. J.

    1980-01-01

    From June 1980 onwards most home candidates taking University of London Advanced-level Biology are required to submit their practical and field work notebooks to their teachers for assessment. This paper describes a trial run assessment of the practical books of 700 candidates, conducted in June 1979, and the statistical moderation procedure…

  16. Statistical and regulatory considerations in assessments of interchangeability of biological drug products.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tóthfalusi, Lászlo; Endrényi, László; Chow, Shein-Chung

    2014-05-01

    When the patent of a brand-name, marketed drug expires, new, generic products are usually offered. Small-molecule generic and originator drug products are expected to be chemically identical. Their pharmaceutical similarity can be typically assessed by simple regulatory criteria such as the expectation that the 90% confidence interval for the ratio of geometric means of some pharmacokinetic parameters be between 0.80 and 1.25. When such criteria are satisfied, the drug products are generally considered to exhibit therapeutic equivalence. They are then usually interchanged freely within individual patients. Biological drugs are complex proteins, for instance, because of their large size, intricate structure, sensitivity to environmental conditions, difficult manufacturing procedures, and the possibility of immunogenicity. Generic and brand-name biologic products can be expected to show only similarity but not identity in their various features and clinical effects. Consequently, the determination of biosimilarity is also a complicated process which involves assessment of the totality of the evidence for the close similarity of the two products. Moreover, even when biosimilarity has been established, it may not be assumed that the two biosimilar products can be automatically substituted by pharmacists. This generally requires additional, careful considerations. Without declaring interchangeability, a new product could be prescribed, i.e. it is prescribable. However, two products can be automatically substituted only if they are interchangeable. Interchangeability is a statistical term and it means that products can be used in any order in the same patient without considering the treatment history. The concepts of interchangeability and prescribability have been widely discussed in the past but only in relation to small molecule generics. In this paper we apply these concepts to biosimilars and we discuss: definitions of prescribability and interchangeability and

  17. 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

  18. Significance of noncalcified coronary plaque in asymptomatic subjects with low coronary artery calcium score: assessment with coronary computed tomography angiography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoo, Dong Hyun; Chun, Eun Ju; Choi, Sang Il; Kim, Jeong A; Jin, Kwang Nam; Yeon, Tae-Jin; Choi, Dong-Ju

    2011-12-01

    We aimed to investigate the prevalence and severity of noncalcified coronary plaques (NCP) using coronary CT angiography (CCTA) and analyze predictors of significant coronary stenosis by NCP in asymptomatic subjects with low coronary artery calcium score (CACS). The institutional review board approved this retrospective study and all patients gave written, informed consent. The presence of plaque, severity of stenosis, plaque characteristics, and CACS were assessed in 7,515 asymptomatic subjects. We evaluated the prevalence and severity of NCP in subjects having low CACS (707 subjects; men with CACS from 1 to 50 and women from 1 to 10) in comparison to those having 0 CACS (6,040 subjects) as the reference standard. Conventional risk factors were assessed for predictors of NCP and significant stenosis by NCP. We also investigated the cardiac events of the patients through medical records. Compared to subjects with 0 CACS, those with low CACS showed higher prevalence of NCP (6.9% vs. 31.5%, P NCP (0.8% vs. 7.5%, P NCP included diabetes mellitus (DM), hypertension, and elevated low-density lipoprotein (LDL)-cholesterol (all P NCP were classified into the low to intermediate risk according to Framingham Risk Score. At the median follow up of 42 months (range: 3-60 months), cardiac events were significantly higher in the low CACS group compared to the 0 CACS group (2.6% vs. 0.27%, P NCP were higher as compared to subjects having zero CACS and predictors of significant stenosis by NCP were DM, hypertension and LDL-Cholesterol. Therefore, CCTA may be useful for risk stratification of coronary artery disease as added value over CACS in selected populations with low CACS who have predictors of significant NCP.

  19. Assessment of the autonomic nervous system is an appropriate biological marker for the well-being in erectile dysfunction

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Tolga Dogru; Orhan Murat Kocak; Nurper Erberk-Ozen; Murat Basar

    2008-01-01

    Aim: To investigate whether the autonomic nervous system (ANS) components are suitable biological markers for representing well-being in patients with erectile dysfunction (ED). Methods: The present study included 74 male patients who had applied for check-ups in the cardiology outpatient clinic at Kirikkale University (Kirikkale, Turkey) and who had been diagnosed as having hyperlipidemia. Of these patients, 26 had an additional diagnosis of ED and made up the patient group. The remaining 48 patients formed the control group. Well-being was assessed with short- form 36 (SF-36). The International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF) was used as a measure of libido and erectile function. Quantitative assessment of the ANS was made based on the analysis of heart rate variability by means of 24-h holter monitorization. Results: Comparisons between the ED and control groups showed significant differences only in energy scale of SF-36. The ED group also had significantly higher values of sympathetic activity. Except for the general health score of SF-36, which was found to be correlated with parasympathetic activity only in ED group, there were similar correlation patterns within the groups. Although well-being and sympathetic activity were corre- lated negatively, parasympathetic activity and well-being were correlated positively. Conclusion: Quantitative as- sessment of the ANS by heart rate variability analysis might be a suitable marker for well-being of patients with ED. (Asian J Androl 2008 Jul; 10: 643-650)

  20. Biological significance of DNA adducts investigated by simultaneous analysis of different endpoints of genotoxicity in L5178Y mouse lymphoma cells treated with methyl methanesulfonate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brink, Andreas; Schulz, Berta; Stopper, Helga; Lutz, Werner K

    2007-12-01

    The biological significance of DNA adducts is under continuous discussion because analytical developments allow determination of adducts at ever lower levels. Central questions refer to the biological consequences of adducts and to the relationship between background DNA damage and exposure-related increments. These questions were addressed by measuring the two DNA adducts 7-methylguanine (7-mG) and O(6)-methyl-2'-deoxyguanosine (O(6)-mdGuo) by LC-MS/MS in parallel to two biological endpoints of genotoxicity (comet assay and in vitro micronucleus test), using large batches of L5178Y mouse lymphoma cells treated with methyl methanesulfonate (MMS). The background level of 7-mG was 1440 adducts per 10(9) nucleotides while O(6)-mdGuo was almost 50-fold lower (32 adducts per 10(9) nucleotides). In the comet assay and the micronucleus test, background was in the usual range seen with smaller batches of cells (2.1% Tail DNA and 12 micronuclei-containing cells per 1000 binucleated cells, respectively). For the comparison of the four endpoints for dose-related increments above background in the low-response region we assumed linearity at low dose and used the concept of the "doubling dose", i.e., we estimated the concentration of MMS necessary to double the background measures. Doubling doses of 4.3 and 8.7microM MMS were deduced for 7-mG and O(6)-mdGuo, respectively. For doubling the background measures in the comet assay and the micronucleus test, 5 to 15-fold higher concentrations of MMS were necessary (45 and 66microM, respectively). This means that the contribution of an increase in DNA methylation to biological endpoints of genotoxicity is overestimated. For xenobiotics that generate adducts without background, the difference is even more pronounced because the dose-response curve starts at zero and the limit of detection of an increase is not affected by background variation. Consequences for the question of thresholds in dose-response relationships and for the

  1. Assessing the Effectiveness of a Constructed Arctic Stream Using Multiple Biological Attributes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Nicholas E.; Scrimgeour, Garry J.; Tonn, William M.

    2008-12-01

    Objective assessment of habitat compensation is a central yet challenging issue for restoration ecologists. In 1997, a 3.4-km stream channel, designed to divert water around an open pit diamond mine, was excavated in the Barrenlands region of the Canadian Arctic to create productive stream habitat. We evaluated the initial success of this compensation program by comparing multiple biological attributes of the constructed stream during its first three years to those of natural reference streams in the area. The riparian zone of the constructed stream was largely devoid of vegetation throughout the period, in contrast to the densely vegetated zones of reference streams. The constructed stream also contained lower amounts of woody debris, coarse particulate organic matter (CPOM), and epilithon; had lower coverage by macrophytes and bryophytes; and processed leaf litter at a lower rate than reference streams. Species richness and densities of macroinvertebrates were consistently lower in the constructed stream compared to natural streams. This contributed to differences in macroinvertebrate assemblage structure throughout the period, although assemblages showed some convergence by year 3. The effectiveness of the constructed stream to emulate natural streams varied somewhat depending on the biological attribute being evaluated. Assessments based on individual attributes showed that minimal to moderate levels of similarity between the constructed stream and natural streams were achieved. A collective assessment of all biological and ecosystem attributes suggested that the constructed stream was not a good surrogate for natural streams during these first years. Additional time would be required before many characteristics of the constructed stream would resemble those of reference streams. Because initial efforts to improve fish habitat in the constructed stream focused on physical structures (e.g., weirs, vanes, rock, groins), ecological factors limiting fish growth

  2. Study to assess the level of stress and identification of significant stressors among the railway engine pilots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sumit Prakash

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Increasing demands, exacting management, poor ergonomics, and intense competition within and without are likely to contribute to stress among the railway engine pilots. This excess of stress and its consequences cost very high to both the organization and the consumers. Aims and Objectives: This study aims to identify the particular stressors affecting the railway engine pilots and their level of occupational stress in order to improve the safety, efficiency, and overall productivity of the railways and to propose the remedies. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study conducted at Central Hospital, SECR, Bilaspur, from 20/09/10 to 20/11/10, involving a study sample of 100 healthy Loco Pilots and 100 controls with similar safety category meeting the set inclusion and exclusion criteria, subjected to cross-sectional interviews and questionnaires. Results: Job stress correlated significantly with fatigue (P<0.001, ergonomics of work place (P<0.05 (particularly the postural discomfort and cab space, management pressure (P<0.01, high job demand (P<0.001, low control and low support at work (P<0.01, biological functions (P<0.05, and absenteeism (P<0.001. Top ten stressors have been identified and postural discomfort tops the list. The study also identifies minimal efforts from administration to reduce stress of its employees. Conclusion: The high demand, low control, and low support at the work with difficult work environment and inadequate recreation at the place of intermediary rest corroborates with development of stress affecting the normal biological functions leading to either avoidance of duty or making the railway engine pilots susceptible to fatigue and drowsiness, neglect, injuries, and accidents.

  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. 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.

  5. Assessment of the electrochemical effects of pulsed electric fields in a biological cell suspension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chafai, Djamel Eddine; Mehle, Andraž; Tilmatine, Amar; Maouche, Bachir; Miklavčič, Damijan

    2015-12-01

    Electroporation of cells is successfully used in biology, biotechnology and medicine. Practical problems still arise in the electroporation of cells in suspension. For example, the determination of cell electroporation is still a demanding and time-consuming task. Electric pulses also cause contamination of the solution by the metal released from the electrodes and create local enhancements of the electric field, leading to the occurrence of electrochemical reactions at the electrode/electrolyte interface. In our study, we investigated the possibility of assessing modifications to the cell environment caused by pulsed electric fields using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy. We designed an experimental protocol to elucidate the mechanism by which a pulsed electric field affects the electrode state in relation to different electrolyte conductivities at the interface. The results show that a pulsed electric field affects electrodes and its degree depends on the electrolyte conductivity. Evolution of the electrochemical reaction rate depends on the initial free charges and those generated by the pulsed electric field. In the presence of biological cells, the initial free charges in the medium are reduced. The electrical current path at low frequency is longer, i.e., conductivity is decreased, even in the presence of increased permeability of the cell membrane created by the pulsed electric field.

  6. Characterization of Radiation Fields in Biological Shields of Nuclear Power Plants for Assessing Concrete Degradation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Remec, Igor [ORNL; Rosseel, Thomas M [ORNL; Field, Kevin G [ORNL; Pape, Yann Le [Oak Ridge National Laboratory (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 (E > 0.1 MeV) values in the concrete biological shields of the US PWR 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 assure reliable risk assessment for NPPs extended operation.

  7. Assessment of the human medical significance of the rabies zoonosis in Germany--analysis of available data and desiderata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ross, R Stefan; Freuling, Conrad M; Deleré, Yvonne; Müller, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    In order to assess the human medical significance of the rabies zoonosis in Germany, the data of the relevant surveillance and of the registration systems as well as prescriptions submitted to the statutory health insurance (SHI) were assessed. In all, 2441 of the 81 280 total examinations for rabies conducted on animals were performed subsequent to contact with humans. In this context 54% of exposures were attributed to wild animals and 46%, to domestic animals. In 2006 and 2007 there were still 0.42 and 0.34 veterinary medical analyses per 100 000 inhabitants, respectively, subsequent to human contact. After the proclamation that Germany was free of terrestrial rabies, these indices dropped to 0.2 in 2009 and 2010. During the survey period, 21 700 doses of rabies vaccine were issued annually for SHI prescriptions on average; they would have been adequate for approximately 7230 complete courses of rabies pre-exposure prophylaxis or 4340 complete post-exposure treatments. For which of these two principal indications the vaccines were actually used cannot be determined from the SHI prescriptions. Taken together, the officially available data from rabies surveillance or registration systems even in combination with a nearly complete record of SHI prescription numbers did not allow an even nearly adequate reconstruction of the human medical significance of the rabies zoonosis in Germany. If one desired to achieve this, one would have to use, for example, an approach that is known from other European countries such as France, Finland, or The Netherlands.

  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. Analysis of English language learner performance on the biology Massachusetts comprehensive assessment system: The impact of english proficiency, first language characteristics, and late-entry ELL status

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Mary A.

    This study analyzed English language learner (ELL) performance on the June 2012 Biology MCAS, namely on item attributes of domain, cognitive skill, and linguistic complexity. It examined the impact of English proficiency, Latinate first language, first language orthography, and late-entry ELL status. The results indicated that English proficiency was a strong predictor of performance and that ELLs at higher levels of English proficiency overwhelmingly passed. The results further indicated that English proficiency introduced a construct-irrelevant variance on the Biology MCAS and raised validity issues for using this assessment at lower levels of English proficiency. This study also found that ELLs with a Latinate first language consistently had statistically significant lower performance. Late-entry ELL status did not predict Biology MCAS performance.

  10. Assessment of the Effects of Student Response Systems on Student Learning and Attitudes over a Broad Range of Biology Courses

    OpenAIRE

    Preszler, Ralph W.; Dawe, Angus; Shuster, Charles B.; Shuster, Michèle

    2007-01-01

    With the advent of wireless technology, new tools are available that are intended to enhance students' learning and attitudes. To assess the effectiveness of wireless student response systems in the biology curriculum at New Mexico State University, a combined study of student attitudes and performance was undertaken. A survey of students in six biology courses showed that strong majorities of students had favorable overall impressions of the use of student response systems and also thought t...

  11. 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.

  12. Assessing Ecological Impacts of Shrimp and Sewage Effluent: Biological Indicators with Standard Water Quality Analyses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, A. B.; O'Donohue, M. J.; Udy, J.; Dennison, W. C.

    2001-01-01

    Despite evidence linking shrimp farming to several cases of environmental degradation, there remains a lack of ecologically meaningful information about the impacts of effluent on receiving waters. The aim of this study was to determine the biological impact of shrimp farm effluent, and to compare and distinguish its impacts from treated sewage effluent. Analyses included standard water quality/sediment parameters, as well as biological indicators including tissue nitrogen (N) content, stable isotope ratio of nitrogen (δ 15N), and amino acid composition of inhabitant seagrasses, mangroves and macroalgae. The study area consisted of two tidal creeks, one receiving effluent from a sewage treatment plant and the other from an intensive shrimp farm. The creeks discharged into the western side of Moreton Bay, a sub-tropical coastal embayment on the east coast of Australia. Characterization of water quality revealed significant differences between the creeks, and with unimpacted eastern Moreton Bay. The sewage creek had higher concentrations of dissolved nutrients (predominantly NO-3/NO-2 and PO3-4, compared to NH+4 in the shrimp creek). In contrast, the shrimp creek was more turbid and had higher phytoplankton productivity. Beyond 750 m from the creek mouths, water quality parameters were indistinguishable from eastern Moreton Bay values. Biological indicators detected significant impacts up to 4 km beyond the creek mouths (reference site). Elevated plant δ 15N values ranged from 10·4-19·6‰ at the site of sewage discharge to 2·9-4·5‰ at the reference site. The free amino acid concentration and composition of seagrass and macroalgae was used to distinguish between the uptake of sewage and shrimp derived N. Proline (seagrass) and serine (macroalgae) were high in sewage impacted plants and glutamine (seagrass) and alanine (macroalgae) were high in plants impacted by shrimp effluent. The δ 15N isotopic signatures and free amino acid composition of inhabitant

  13. [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

  14. Assessment of the biological effects of 'strange' radiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pryakhin, E.A.; Tryapitsina, G.A. [Chelyabinsk State University, Chelyabinsk (Russian Federation); Urutskoyev, L.I. [RECOM Company, Kurchatov Russian Research Institute, Moscow (Russian Federation); Akleyev, A.V. [Urals Research Center for Radiation Medicine, Chelyabinsk (Russian Federation)

    2006-07-01

    studies: 1. 'strange' radiation resulting from explosion of Ti foils in water and aqueous solutions has the capacity to produce a biological effect. 2. The biological effect of 'strange' radiation is manifested by a 13% increase in the number of nucleated cells in the bone marrow, as compared to that in controls, after exposure of the animals to 10 explosions within 3 days of the experiment. 3. The assessment of micronucleus rate in the bone marrow erythrocytes did not reveal the genotoxic effect of 'strange' radiation. 4. The exposure of mice to 'strange' radiation resulting from 10 explosions carried out within 3 days leads to 1.5 fold decrease of genotoxic effect resulting from additional gamma-irradiation (2 Gy). Such reaction may be described as an adaptive response. 5. 'strange' radiation resulting from 10 explosions carried out within 3 days after the gamma irradiation (6 Gy) leads to decrease of bone marrow repopulation. 6. The exposure to 'strange' radiation can bring about an increase in the proportion of neutrophils in the peripheral blood of experimental animals. 7. It can be suggested by the results of the test exposures that 'strange' radiation can affect human health. 8. It has been shown by these preliminary studies that in order to gain an insight into the biological effects of 'strange' radiation further investigation would be necessary. (authors)

  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. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Biochar and hydrochar reactivity assessed by chemical, physical and biological methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naisse, Christophe; Alexis, Marie; Wiedner, Katja; Glaser, Bruno; pozzi, Alessandro; Carcaillet, Christopher; Criscuoli, Irene; Miglietta, Franco; Rumpel, Cornelia

    2014-05-01

    Field application of biochar is intended to increase soil carbon (C) storage. The assessment of C storage potential of biochars lacks methods and standard materials. In this study, we compared the chemical reactivity of biochars and hydrochars and their potential mineralisation before and after physical weathering as one possibility to evaluate their environmental stability. We used biochars produced by gasification (GSs) and hydrochars produced by hydrothermal carbonisation (HTCs) produced from three different feedstocks as well as Holocene charcoals (150 and 2000 yr old). Their chemical reactivity was analysed after acid dichromate oxidation and their mineralisation potential after laboratory incubations before and after physical weathering. Our results showed that use of acid dichromate oxidation may allow for differentiation of the reactivity of modern biochars but that chemical reactivity of biochars is poorly suited to assess their environmental residence time because it may change with exposure time in soil. Physical weathering induced a carbon loss and increased biological stability of biochar, while reducing its positive priming effect on native soil organic matter. Model extrapolations based on our data showed that decadal C sequestration potential of GS and HTC is globally equivalent when all losses including those due to priming and physical weathering were taken into account. However, at century scale only GS may have the potential to increase soil C storage.

  20. 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.

  1. Biological and clinical significance of NAC1 expression in cervical carcinomas: a comparative study between squamous cell carcinomas and adenocarcinomas/adenosquamous carcinomas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeasmin, Shamima; Nakayama, Kentaro; Rahman, Mohammed Tanjimur; Rahman, Munmun; Ishikawa, Masako; Katagiri, Atsuko; Iida, Kouji; Nakayama, Naomi; Otuski, Yoshiro; Kobayashi, Hiroshi; Nakayama, Satoru; Miyazaki, Kohji

    2012-04-01

    This study examined the biological and clinical significance of NAC1 (nucleus accumbens associated 1) expression in both cervical squamous cell carcinomas and adenocarcinomas/adenosquamous carcinomas. Using immunohistochemistry, the frequency of positive NAC1 expression in adenocarcinomas/adenosquamous carcinomas (31.0%; 18/58) was significantly higher than that in squamous cell carcinomas (16.2%; 12/74) (P = .043). NAC1 gene amplification was identified by fluorescence in situ hybridization in 5 (7.2%) of 69 squamous cell carcinomas. NAC1 amplification was not identified in the adenocarcinomas (0%; 0/58). Positive NAC1 expression was significantly correlated with shorter overall survival in squamous cell carcinomas (P NAC1 expression in squamous cell carcinomas was an independent prognostic factor for overall survival after standard radiotherapy (P = .0003). In contrast to squamous cell carcinomas, positive NAC1 expression did not correlate with shorter overall survival in adenocarcinomas/adenosquamous carcinomas (P = .317). Profound growth inhibition, increased apoptosis, decreased cell proliferation, and decreased cell migration and invasion were observed in silencing RNA-treated cancer cells with NAC1 overexpression compared with cancer cells without NAC1 expression. NAC1 overexpression stimulated proliferation, migration, and invasion in the cervical cancer cell lines TCS and Hela P3, which normally lack NAC1 expression. These findings indicate that NAC1 overexpression is critical to the growth and survival of cervical carcinomas irrespective of histologic type. Furthermore, they suggest that NAC1 silencing RNA-induced phenotypes depend on the expression status of the targeted cell line. Therefore, cervical carcinoma patients with NAC1 expression may benefit from a targeted therapy irrespective of histologic type.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anjum, Naser A. [University of Aveiro, Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies (CESAM) and Department of Chemistry (Portugal); Singh, Neetu; Singh, Manoj K. [University of Aveiro, Center for Mechanical Technology and Automation (TEMA) and Department of Mechanical Engineering (Portugal); Shah, Zahoor A. [University of Toledo, Department of Medicinal and Biological Chemistry, College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences (United States); Duarte, Armando C.; Pereira, Eduarda; Ahmad, Iqbal, E-mail: ahmadr@ua.pt [University of Aveiro, Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies (CESAM) and Department of Chemistry (Portugal)

    2013-07-15

    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{sup -1}) of graphene oxide (0.5-5 {mu}m) and evaluates glutathione ({gamma}-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{sup -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{sup -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

  3. An assessment of aquatic ecosystem health in a temperate watershed using the index of biological integrity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    An, Kwang-Guk; Choi, Shin-Sok

    2003-06-01

    The health effect of an aquatic ecosystem on habitat modifications were evaluated in the Keum river watershed, Korea during 1977-1996 using the Index of Biological Integrity (IBI) based on fish assemblages. Values of IBI, based on overall sites, averaged 35 (range: 26-45, n = 38) before dam construction, indicating a "fair health condition" based on the modified criteria of Karr and Chu (Karr, J.R.; Chu, E.W. Restoring Life in Running Waters: Better Biological Monitoring; Inland Press: Washington, DC, 1999; 206 pp.), while the values averaged 33 (range: 18-48, n = 15) after dam construction, indicating a similar ecosystem health condition in the IBI between the two periods. Marked modifications in the IBI, however, were partially observed along the longitudinal gradients from the headwaters to downstream along with variations of trophic compositions and habitat guilds. Annual mean of IBI showed significant decreases (p 20% decreases of insectivores and >25% increases of omnivores. Comparisons of habitat guilds indicated that the proportion of riffle benthic species declined linearly from 1977 to 1996 and had inverse relations (r = -0.78, p health was mainly affected by the habitat modifications.

  4. The pros and cons of ecological risk assessment based on data from different levels of biological organization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rohr, Jason R; Salice, Christopher J; Nisbet, Roger M

    2016-10-01

    Ecological risk assessment (ERA) is the process used to evaluate the safety of manufactured chemicals to the environment. Here we review the pros and cons of ERA across levels of biological organization, including suborganismal (e.g., biomarkers), individual, population, community, ecosystem and landscapes levels. Our review revealed that level of biological organization is often related negatively with ease at assessing cause-effect relationships, ease of high-throughput screening of large numbers of chemicals (it is especially easier for suborganismal endpoints), and uncertainty of the ERA because low levels of biological organization tend to have a large distance between their measurement (what is quantified) and assessment endpoints (what is to be protected). In contrast, level of biological organization is often related positively with sensitivity to important negative and positive feedbacks and context dependencies within biological systems, and ease at capturing recovery from adverse contaminant effects. Some endpoints did not show obvious trends across levels of biological organization, such as the use of vertebrate animals in chemical testing and ease at screening large numbers of species, and other factors lacked sufficient data across levels of biological organization, such as repeatability, variability, cost per study and cost per species of effects assessment, the latter of which might be a more defensible way to compare costs of ERAs than cost per study. To compensate for weaknesses of ERA at any particular level of biological organization, we also review mathematical modeling approaches commonly used to extrapolate effects across levels of organization. Finally, we provide recommendations for next generation ERA, submitting that if there is an ideal level of biological organization to conduct ERA, it will only emerge if ERA is approached simultaneously from the bottom of biological organization up as well as from the top down, all while employing

  5. Hyperspectral microscopy for characterization of gold nanoparticles in biological media and cells for toxicity assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grabinski, Christin; Schlager, John; Hussain, Saber

    2013-01-01

    Nanoparticles (NPs) are being implemented in a wide range of applications, and it is critical to proactively investigate their toxicity. Due to the extensive range of NPs being produced, in vitro studies are a valuable approach for toxicity screening. Key information required to support in vitro toxicity assessments include NP stability in biologically relevant media and fate once exposed to cells. Hyperspectral microscopy is a sensitive, real-time technique that combines the use of microscopy and spectroscopy for the measurement of the reflectance spectrum at individual pixels in a micrograph. This method has been used extensively for molecular imaging with plasmonic NPs as contrast agents (Aaron et al., Opt Express 16:2153-2167, 2008; Kumar et al., Nano Lett 7:1338-1343, 2007; Wax and Sokolov, Laser Photon Rev 3:146-158, 2009; Curry et al., Opt Express 14:6535-6542, 2006; Curry et al., J Biomed Opt 13:014022, 2008; Cognet et al., Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 100:11350-11355, 2003; Sokolov et al., Cancer Res 63:1999-2004, 2003; Sönnichsen et al., Nat Biotechnol 23:741-745, 2005; Nusz et al., Anal Chem 80:984-989, 2008) and/or sensors (Nusz et al., Anal Chem 80:984-989, 2008; Ungureanu et al., Sens Actuators B 150:529-536, 2010; McFarland and Van Duyne, Nano Lett 3:1057-1062, 2003; Galush et al., Nano Lett 9:2077-2082, 2009; El-Sayed et al., Nano Lett 5:829-834, 2005). Here we describe an approach for using hyperspectral microscopy to characterize the agglomeration and stability of plasmonic NPs in biological media and their interactions with cells.

  6. Assessment of alginate hydrogel degradation in biological tissue using viscosity-sensitive fluorescent dyes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shkand, Tatiana V.; Chizh, Mykola O.; Sleta, Iryna V.; Sandomirsky, Borys P.; Tatarets, Anatoliy L.; Patsenker, Leonid D.

    2016-12-01

    The main goal of this study is to investigate a combination of viscosity-sensitive and viscosity-insensitive fluorescent dyes to distinguish different rheological states of hydrogel based biostructural materials and carriers in biological tissues and to assess their corresponding location areas. The research is done in the example of alginate hydrogel stained with viscosity-sensitive dyes Seta-470 and Seta-560 as well as the viscosity-insensitive dye Seta-650. These dyes absorb/emit at 469/518, 565/591 and 651/670 nm, respectively. The rheological state of the alginate, the area of the fluorescence signal and the mass of the dense alginate versus the calcium gluconate concentration utilized for alginate gelation were studied in vitro. The most pronounced change in the fluorescence signal area was found at the same concentrations of calcium gluconate (below ~1%) as the change in the alginate plaque mass. The stained alginate was also implanted in situ in rat hip and myocardium and monitored using fluorescence imaging. In summary, our data indicate that the viscosity sensitive dye in combination with the viscosity-insensitive dye allow tracking the biodegradation of the alginate hydrogel and determining the rheological state of hydrogel in biological tissue, which both should have relevance for research and clinical applications. Using this method we estimated the half-life of the dense alginate hydrogel in a rat hip to be in the order of 4 d and about 6-8 d in rat myocardium. The half-life of the dense hydrogel in the myocardium was found to be long enough to prevent aneurysm rupture of the left ventricle wall, one of the more severe complications of the early post-infarction period.

  7. 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)

  8. All correlations must die: Assessing the significance of a stochastic gravitational-wave background in pulsar timing arrays

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, S. R.; Lentati, L.; Babak, S.; Brem, P.; Gair, J. R.; Sesana, A.; Vecchio, A.

    2017-02-01

    We present two methods for determining the significance of a stochastic gravitational-wave (GW) background affecting a pulsar-timing array, where detection is based on evidence for quadrupolar spatial correlations between pulsars. Rather than constructing noise simulations, we eliminate the GWB spatial correlations in the true data sets to assess detection significance with all real data features intact. In our first method, we perform random phase shifts in the signal-model basis functions. This phase shifting eliminates signal phase coherence between pulsars, while keeping the statistical properties of the pulsar timing residuals intact. We then explore a method to null correlations between pulsars by using a "scrambled" overlap-reduction function in the signal model for the array. This scrambled function is orthogonal to what we expect of a real GW background signal. We demonstrate the efficacy of these methods using Bayesian model selection on a set of simulated data sets that contain a stochastic GW signal, timing noise, undiagnosed glitches, and uncertainties in the Solar system ephemeris. Finally, we introduce an overarching formalism under which these two techniques are naturally linked. These methods are immediately applicable to all current pulsar-timing array data sets, and should become standard tools for future analyses.

  9. 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.

  10. 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…

  11. 75 FR 28232 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Hemlock Woolly...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-20

    ... a biological control agent to reduce the severity of hemlock woolly adelgid infestations. We are... continental United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of hemlock woolly... releasing an insect, L. osakensis, into the continental United States for use as a biological control...

  12. 76 FR 3076 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Air Potato

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-19

    ..., Lilioceris cheni, into the continental United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the..., Lilioceris cheni, into the continental United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the.... cheni, into the continental United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the...

  13. Conjugation of 10 kDa Linear PEG onto Trastuzumab Fab' Is Sufficient to Significantly Enhance Lymphatic Exposure while Preserving in Vitro Biological Activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Linda J; Ascher, David B; Yadav, Rajbharan; Bulitta, Jürgen B; Williams, Charlotte C; Porter, Christopher J H; Landersdorfer, Cornelia B; Kaminskas, Lisa M

    2016-04-01

    The lymphatic system is a major conduit by which many diseases spread and proliferate. There is therefore increasing interest in promoting better lymphatic drug targeting. Further, antibody fragments such as Fabs have several advantages over full length monoclonal antibodies but are subject to rapid plasma clearance, which can limit the lymphatic exposure and activity of Fabs against lymph-resident diseases. This study therefore explored ideal PEGylation strategies to maximize biological activity and lymphatic exposure using trastuzumab Fab' as a model. Specifically, the Fab' was conjugated with single linear 10 or 40 kDa PEG chains at the hinge region. PEGylation led to a 3-4-fold reduction in binding affinity to HER2, but antiproliferative activity against HER2-expressing BT474 cells was preserved. Lymphatic pharmacokinetics were then examined in thoracic lymph duct cannulated rats after intravenous and subcutaneous dosing at 2 mg/kg, and the data were evaluated via population pharmacokinetic modeling. The Fab' displayed limited lymphatic exposure, but conjugation of 10 kDa PEG improved exposure by approximately 11- and 5-fold after intravenous (15% dose collected in thoracic lymph over 30 h) and subcutaneous (9%) administration, respectively. Increasing the molecular weight of the PEG to 40 kDa, however, had no significant impact on lymphatic exposure after intravenous (14%) administration and only doubled lymphatic exposure after subcutaneous administration (18%) when compared to 10 kDa PEG-Fab'. The data therefore suggests that minimal PEGylation has the potential to enhance the exposure and activity of Fab's against lymph-resident diseases, while no significant benefit is achieved with very large PEGs.

  14. The expression characteristics and biological significance of bFGF, EGF,TGF-β isoforms and their receptors in skins from fetus and adult

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chen Wei; Fu Xiaobing; Sun Xiaoqing; Sun Tongzhu; Zhao Zhili; Sheng Zhiyong

    2002-01-01

    To observe the localization and expression characteristics of alpha-smooth muscle actin (AS-MA), basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), epidermal growth factor (EGF), transforming growth factor-β(TGF-β) isoforms, and their receptors in fetal and adult skins in order to explore their potential biological significance.Methods: The expression and the distribution of ASMA, bFGF, EGF, TGF-βisoforms, and their receptors were detected with immunohistochemistry and histopathology methods in 36 skin specimens. Among them, 30 specimens belonged to fetuses at different developmental stages and 6 were from adults. Results:Positive immunohistochemical signals of ASMA, bFGF, EGF, and TGF-βisoforms and their receptors could be found in fetal and postnatal skins.These factors were mainly distributed in the cytoplasm and extracellular matrix of epidermal cells, endothelial cells,hair follicle epithelial cells and some fibroblasts. Receptors of these factors were mostly located in the cellular membrane of the above mentioned cells, while protein particles of ASMA could be observed in myofibroblasts and sweat gland cells. Along with ascent in gestational age, the positive cellular rates of bFGF, EGF, TGF-βisoforms, their receptors, and ASMA in skin were elevated progressively. In skins specimens obtained from fetuses of late-trimester (29-31 week gestation) and adult, the positive rates of these proteins were significantly raised in comparison with skin of fetuses of early-trimester. Conclusion: The endogenous bFGF, EGF, three TGF-βisoforms and their receptors might be involved in the development of the skin in embryonic stage and in the cutaneous structure and function,and also wound healing in adult stage. The relative lack of these factors and their receptors might be one reason why the wound of fetus heal by regeneration rather than by scarring.

  15. The biological difference between CD13+CD133+ and CD13¬CD133¬liver cancer cells and its clinical significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shi-long JIN

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Objective To compare the biological difference between CD13+CD133+ and CD13-CD133- hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC cells in HuH7 cell line and its clinical significance. Methods The status of proliferation, phase of the cell cycle, tumor formation in vivo, differentiation, and their chemoresistance to 5-FU and pirarubicin of CD13+CD133+ and CD13-CD133-HCC cells were studied to analyze the clinical implication of CD13+CD133+HCC cell subset. Results The proliferation rate of CD13+CD133+HCC cells was significantly higher than that of CD13-CD133-HCC cells. The cell-cycle phase study showed that 78.45% of the CD13+CD133+HCC cells were in the G0/G1 phase, 2.19% in G2/M phase, and 19.36% in S phase, while 62.18% CD13-CD133-HCC cells were in the G0/G1 phase, 11.88% in G2/M phase, and 25.95% in S phase. Limiting dilution analysis of HuH7 cells revealed that 1×103 CD13+CD133+ cells could form the tumor, while 1×105 CD13-CD133- cells did. CD13+CD133+ cells showed chemoresistance to 5-FU and pirarubicin, while other three subsets succumbed to the drugs. Conclusion CD13+CD133+ cancer cells in HuH7 showed the characteristics of cancer stem cells (CSCs, which might contribute to the relapse and metastasis of liver cancer, and they may be the main target for chemotherapy in human liver cancer.

  16. 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

  17. Biological monitoring and questionnaire for assessing exposure to ethylenebisdithiocarbamates in a multicenter European field study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fustinoni, S; Campo, L; Liesivuori, J; Pennanen, S; Vergieva, T; van Amelsvoort, Lgpm; Bosetti, C; Van Loveren, H; Colosio, C

    2008-09-01

    This study deals with pesticide exposure profile in some European countries with a specific focus on ethylenebisdithiocarbamates (EBDC). In all, 55 Bulgarian greenhouse workers, 51 Finnish potato farmers, 48 Italian vineyard workers, 42 Dutch floriculture farmers, and 52 Bulgarian zineb producers entered the study. Each group was matched with a group of not occupationally exposed subjects. Exposure data were gained through self-administered questionnaires and measuring ethylenethiourea (ETU) in two spot urine samples collected, respectively, before the beginning of seasonal exposure (T0), and after 30 days, at the end of the exposure period (T30). Controls underwent a similar protocol. Study agriculture workers were involved in mixing and loading pesticides, application of pesticide mixture with mechanical or manual equipments, re-entry activities, and cleaning equipments. Chemical workers were involved in synthesis, quality controls, and packing activities. The number of pesticides to whom these subjects were exposed varied from one (zineb production) to eight (potato farmers). The use of personal protective devices was variegate and regarded both aerial and dermal penetration routes. EBDC exposure, assessed by T30 urinary ETU, was found to follow the order: greenhouse workers, zineb producers, vineyard workers, potato farmers, floriculture farmers with median levels of 49.6, 23.0, 11.8, 7.5, and 0.9 microg/g creatinine; the last group having ETU at the same level of controls (approximately 0.5 microg/g creatinine). Among agriculture workers, pesticide application, especially using manual equipment, seems to be the major determinant in explaining internal dose. Although the analysis of self-administered questionnaires evidenced difficulties especially related to lack and/or poor quality of reported data, biological monitoring confirms to be a powerful tool in assessing pesticide exposure.

  18. Assessment of the Effects of Student Response Systems on Student Learning and Attitudes over a Broad Range of Biology Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Preszler, Ralph W.; Dawe, Angus; Shuster, Charles B.; Shuster, Michele

    2007-01-01

    With the advent of wireless technology, new tools are available that are intended to enhance students' learning and attitudes. To assess the effectiveness of wireless student response systems in the biology curriculum at New Mexico State University, a combined study of student attitudes and performance was undertaken. A survey of students in six…

  19. Characterization of Radiation Fields in Biological Shields of Nuclear Power Plants for Assessing Concrete Degradation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remec, Igor; Rosseel, Thomas M.; Field, Kevin G.; Le Pape, Yann

    2016-02-01

    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. Notice: This manuscript has been authored by UT-Battelle, LLC, under contract DE-AC0500OR22725 with the US Department of Energy. The United States Government retains and the publisher, by accepting the article for publication, acknowledges that the United States Government retains a nonexclusive, paid-up, irrevocable, worldwide license to publish or reproduce the published form of this manuscript, or allow others to do so, for United States Government purposes.

  20. Circulating nucleic acids and hemostasis: biological basis behind their relationship and technical issues in assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danese, Elisa; Montagnana, Martina; Fava, Cristiano; Guidi, Gian Cesare

    2014-10-01

    Nucleic acids (NAs) constitute the backbone of cellular life permitting conservation, transmission, and execution of genetic information. In the past few years, new unexpected functions for NAs, projecting them also beyond nuclear and cellular boundaries have been recognized: circulating cell-free nucleic acids (cfNAs), histones, DNA-histone complexes, microRNAs (miRs) may have a regulatory role in physiological and pathological processes. In particular, several lines of evidence suggest that they can constitute unconventional mediators of thrombus formation, intervening both in hemostasis and thrombosis. Furthermore, in the past decade, the possibility to detect and quantify these in plasma and/or in serum has led to their ancillary use as potential markers in various medical conditions. The use of these as markers within the fields of thrombosis and hemostasis looks promising: the potential implications include the possibility to assess patients' risk profiles for thrombotic events and the identification of more directed targets for pharmacologic intervention. The major impediment is that, to date, the methods by which NAs are explored, still largely differ between published studies and standardized procedures are still lacking. Future research should focus on the physiological mechanisms underlying the activities of such mediators in specific thrombotic conditions and on the definition of reliable methods for their quantification in biological fluids.

  1. 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.

  2. Oil pollution and the significant biological resources of Puget Sound : final report field survey from 16 July 1974 to 01 September 1976 (NODC Accession 7601556)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Biological and chemical data were collected using sediment sampler and other instruments in the PUGET Sound, which is in the Northwest coastal waters of Washington....

  3. Chemical and biological risk assessment of chronic exposure to PAH contaminated sediments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Means, J.; McMillin, D.; Kondapi, N. [Louisiana State Univ., Baton Rouge, LA (United States)

    1995-12-31

    Chronically contaminated sediments represent a long-term source of mixtures of contaminants, exposing aquatic ecosystems to PAH through desorption and bioaccumulation. Chronic toxicity assessments must address potential of these bond contaminants. Environmental impacts and ecological health hazards of sediment-bound normal, alkylated and heterocyclic aromatic hydrocarbons are functions of their entry into aquatic food webs and are controlled by both abiotic and biotic factors. Laboratory and field microcosm exposures of fish and invertebrates were conducted followed by assessments of effects using chemical analysis and biomarkers of potential genotoxic effects. Chemical analysis of accumulated residues of 62 individual PAH were conducted in oysters, Crassostrea virginica exposed to PAH contaminated sediments in the field. The rates and equilibrium bioaccumulation constants for each were determined. Fish were exposed to the same contaminated sediments in laboratory and field exposures. Measurements of ethoxy-resorufin-o-deethylase activity induction as well as alterations in the expression of the p53 tumor suppressor gene were performed on exposed fish liver samples. EROD activities were increased significantly relative to unexposed and laboratory/field control sediment-exposed fish, however, the responses of individuals were highly variable. Fundulus grandis or Gambusia affinis, exposed to contaminated sediments in the laboratory, revealed changes in the expression of the p53 tumor suppressor gene. The degree to which mutations within the gene occurred was assessed using PCR followed by measurement of single stranded DNA polymorphisms using gel electrophoresis chromatography.

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

    OpenAIRE

    Leij, van der, T.

    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 key factors which govern the eff...

  5. Assessment of students’ health condition by indicators of adaptation potential, biological age and bio-energetic reserves of organism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martyniuk O.V.

    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.

  6. Estimation of the Biological Methods of Assessing Soil N-Supplying Capacity in Calcareous Soil

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    JIN Fa-hui; LI Shi-qing; LU Hong-ling; LI Sheng-xiu

    2007-01-01

    Although many biological methods are used to determine soil nitrogen supplying capacity, there are certain differences in the results for different types of soils and various ways of measurement due to the complexity of soil N conformation, the high variance of soil and microorganism, and the difference of environment. Therefore, it is not clear about which biologic incubation method is better for calcareous soil. In this study, pot experiments were performed by using 25 different calcareous surface soil samples on the Loess Plateau and taking the N uptake of wheat and corn with leaching soil initial nitrate and without leaching in pot experiments as the control to investigate the difference of eight biological incubation methods for reflecting soil nitrogen supply capacity. The eight biological methods are waterlogged incubation, aerobic incubation for 2 weeks and for 4 weeks, dry-wet alternation aerobic incubation for 2 weeks, long-term alternate leaching aerobic incubation (and N mineralization potential, N0), short-term leaching aerobic incubation, microbial biomass carbon (BC), and microbial biomass nitrogen (BN) method, respectively. Among these methods, the dry-wet alternation aerobic incubation and aerobic incubation for 4 weeks were the modification of the method of aerobic incubation for 2 weeks according to the actual farmland moisture. The results showed that the correlation coefficients between these methods and crop uptake N with leaching soil initial nitrate were 0.530, 0.700, 0.777, 0.768, 0.764 (and 0.790, N0), 0.650, 0.555, and 0.465, respectively (r0.05 = 0.369, r0.01 = 0.505). While without leaching soil initial nitrate, their coefficients were 0.351, 0.963, 0.962, 0.959, 0.825 (and 0.812, N0), 0.963, 0.289, and 0.095, respectively (r0.05=0.369, r0.01 =0.505). In conclusion,excluding the soil initial nitrate, the correlation coefficients between the eight methods and crop uptake N were, from high to low, N0, aerobic incubation for 4 weeks, dry

  7. 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

  8. Assessing age-related grey matter decline with Voxel-Based Morphometry depends significantly on segmentation and normalisation procedures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorothée V Callaert

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Healthy ageing coincides with a progressive decline of brain grey matter (GM ultimately affecting the entire brain. For a long time, manual delineation-based volumetry within predefined regions of interest (ROI has been the gold standard for assessing such degeneration. Voxel-Based Morphometry (VBM offers an automated alternative approach that, however, relies critically on the segmentation and spatial normalization of a large collection of images from different subjects. This can be achieved via different algorithms, with SPM5/SPM8, DARTEL of SPM8 and FSL tools (FAST, FNIRT being three of the most frequently used. We complemented these voxel based measurements with a ROI based approach, whereby the ROIs are defined by transforms of an atlas (containing different tissue probability maps as well as predefined anatomic labels to the individual subject images in order to obtain volumetric information at the level of the whole brain or within separate ROIs. Comparing GM decline between 21 young subjects (mean age 23 and 18 elderly (mean age 66 revealed that volumetric measurements differed significantly between methods. The unified segmentation/normalisation of SPM5/SPM8 revealed the largest age-related differences and DARTEL the smallest, with FSL being more similar to the DARTEL approach. Method specific differences were substantial after segmentation and most pronounced for the cortical structures in close vicinity to major sulci and fissures. Our findings suggest that algorithms that provide only limited degrees of freedom for local deformations (such as the unified segmentation and normalisation of SPM5/SPM8 tend to overestimate between-group differences in VBM results when compared to methods providing more flexible warping. This difference seems to be most pronounced if the anatomy of one of the groups deviates from custom templates, a finding that is of particular importance when results are compared across studies using different VBM

  9. Drug levels, immunogenicity and assessment of active sacroiliitis in patients with axial spondyloarthritis under biologic tapering strategy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almirall, Miriam; Gimeno, Ramón; Salman-Monte, Tarek Carlos; Iniesta, Silvia; Lisbona, Maria Pilar; Maymó, Joan

    2016-04-01

    The aim of the study was to assess drug levels, immunogenicity and sacroiliitis on MRI in patients with axial spondyloarthritis under biologic tapering strategy. Consecutive patients with axial spondyloarthritis who remained in low disease activity more than 1 year after dose tapering of infliximab and adalimumab were included. Plasma drug concentrations of TNF inhibitors and anti-drug antibodies were determined, and MRI of sacroiliac joints was evaluated. Of twenty patients included, eighteen had therapeutic drug levels, no patient had anti-drug antibodies, and no patient had active sacroiliitis on MRI. These data could support the biologic tapering strategy and their maintenance over time.

  10. 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.

  11. How Is Science Learning Assessed at the Postsecondary Level? Assessment and Grading Practices in College Biology, Chemistry and Physics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goubeaud, Karleen

    2010-01-01

    The role of assessment in higher education is gaining importance as accountability requirements intensify and as assessments are increasingly recognized as having potential to improve teaching and learning. During the last two decades, educators have begun implementing a wider variety of assessment types including alternative and student-centered…

  12. 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

    2016-03-01

    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.

  13. 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

    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...... was found in relation to physical exercise (p=0.92 [global test]). CONCLUSION: Levels of plasma TIMP-1 in volunteers show limited circadian, day-to-day, week-to-week and season-to-season variation. In addition, physical exercise has no impact on plasma TIMP-1 levels. Possible storage-dependent decreases...

  14. Assessment of solid reactive mixtures for the development of biological permeable reactive barriers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pagnanelli, Francesca; Viggi, Carolina Cruz; Mainelli, Sara; Toro, Luigi

    2009-10-30

    Solid reactive mixtures were tested as filling material for the development of biological permeable reactive barriers for the treatment of heavy metals contaminated waters. Mixture selection was performed by taking into account the different mechanisms operating in sulphate and cadmium removal with particular attention to bioprecipitation and sorption onto the organic matrices in the mixtures. Suspensions of eight reactive mixtures were tested for sulphate removal (initial concentration 3 g L(-1)). Each mixture was made up of four main functional components: a mix of organic sources for bacterial growth, a neutralizing agent, a porous medium and zero-valent iron. The best mixture among the tested ones (M8: 6% leaves, 9% compost, 3% zero-valent iron, 30% silica sand, 30% perlite, 22% limestone) presented optimal conditions for SRB growth (pH 7.8 +/- 0.1; E(h)= -410 +/- 5 mV) and 83% sulphate removal in 22 days (25% due to bioreduction, 32% due to sorption onto compost and 20% onto leaves). M8 mixture allowed the complete abatement of cadmium with a significant contribution of sorption over bioprecipitation (6% Cd removal due to SRB activity). Sorption properties, characterised by potentiometric titrations and related modelling, were mainly due to carboxylic sites of organic components used in reactive mixtures.

  15. Biological Significance and the Related Molecular Mechanism of Ets1 mRNA Expression in Lung Cancer by Tissue Microarray (TMA)

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    Objective: To investigate the expressions and molecular mechanism of Ets-1 mRNA, and TGFβ1 and c-Met proteins in the pathogenesis, progression of lung cancer by tissue microarray (TMA) method. Methods: The expressions of Ets-1 mRNA, and TGFβ1 and c-Met proteins were detected in 89 primary lung cancers, 12 lung cancer with lymph-node metastasis and 12 precancerous lesions by FISH(fluorescence in situ hybridization) and immunohistochemical method, and 10 normal lung tissues were used as controls. Results: The expressions of Ets-1 mRNA, and TGFβ1 and c-Met proteins were significantly higher in 89 primary lung cancer than in the control group (P<0.05). The expressions of Ets-1 mRNA, and TGFβ1 and c-Met proteins were related to lymph node metastasis and clinical stages. There was a positive correlation between the Ets-1 mRNA expression and TGFβ1 and c-Met proteins (P<0.05). Conclusion: Ets-1 mRNA, TGFβ1 and c-Met proteins may be related to the pathogenesis, progression and malignant behavior of lung cancer. They may play an important role in prognosis assessment of lung cancer.

  16. Long-term biological monitoring of environmental quality around a solid waste landfill assessed with lichens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paoli, L; Corsini, A; Bigagli, V; Vannini, J; Bruscoli, C; Loppi, S

    2012-02-01

    The diversity of epiphytic lichens and the accumulation of selected trace elements in the lichen Flavoparmelia caperata L. (Hale) were used as indicators of pollution around a landfill in central Italy along 14 years of waste management. Lichens revealed an increased deposition for some elements (i.e., Cd, Cr, Fe and Ni) and a decrease of the lichen diversity at sites facing the landfill after an enlargement of the dumping area. However, the results allowed to exclude a significant increase in heavy metal depositions in the surrounding area and suggested that successful waste management may be associated with environmental quality. It is concluded that lichen monitoring might provide essential information to enhance the implementation of ecological impact assessment, supporting industrial regulatory procedures, also when waste management is concerned.

  17. Seasonal assessment of biological indices, bioaccumulation and bioavailability of heavy metals in mussels Mytilus galloprovincialis from Algerian west coast, applied to environmental monitoring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Omar Rouane-Hacene

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the present work is to broaden our knowledge on the variability of trace metals in mussel tissues, focusing on seasonal fluctuations in the three different sampling sites of Algerian west coast (Oran Harbor (S1, Ain Defla (S2 and Hadjaj (S3. For this purpose, the bioavailability (metal indices and bioaccumulation (metal concentrations in soft tissues of heavy metals (Zn, Cu, Pb, and Cd, and the physiological characteristics (e.g. biological indices such as condition index (CI of mussels Mytilus galloprovincialis have been assessed and related to seasons and sites. In S1, the highest levels of metal concentrations and indices were obtained in mussels sampled in winter for Zn, Cu and Cd, but in summer for Pb. The biological indices significantly decreased in winter. In S2, the levels of concentrations and indices of all metals varied whatever the seasons, excepting in summer where the values were the lowest. In summer and spring, the biological indices were lower than in autumn and winter. The low growth of organisms in spring and summer might be correlated to the reproductive period and the low trophic level known in S2. S3, considered as a “pristine” area, showed low metal concentrations and indices, and high biological indices, reflecting the favorable physiological conditions for the mussel growth. This approach might be used in the monitoring of the quality of coastal waters and the present work provided a useful data set for Mediterranean monitoring network.

  18. 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...

  19. 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.

  20. The significance of ecology in the development of Verticillium chlamydosporium as a biological 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 particular

  1. Group-based trajectory modeling to assess adherence to biologics among patients with psoriasis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Y

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Yunfeng Li,1 Huanxue Zhou,2 Beilei Cai,1 Kristijan H Kahler,1 Haijun Tian,1 Susan Gabriel,1 Steve Arcona11Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, East Hanover, NJ, USA; 2KMK Consulting Inc., Florham Park, NJ, USABackground: Proportion of days covered (PDC, a commonly used adherence metric, does not provide information about the longitudinal course of adherence to treatment over time. Group-based trajectory model (GBTM is an alternative method that overcomes this limitation.Methods: The statistical principles of GBTM and PDC were applied to assess adherence during a 12-month follow-up in psoriasis patients starting treatment with a biologic. The optimal GBTM model was determined on the basis of the balance between each model's Bayesian information criterion and the percentage of patients in the smallest group in each model. Variables potentially predictive of adherence were evaluated.Results: In all, 3,249 patients were included in the analysis. Four GBTM adherence groups were suggested by the optimal model, and patients were categorized as demonstrating continuously high adherence, high-then-low adherence, moderate-then-low adherence, or consistently moderate adherence during follow-up. For comparison, four PDC groups were constructed: PDC Group 4 (PDC ≥75%, PDC Group 3 (25%≤ PDC <50%, PDC Group 2 (PDC <25%, and PDC Group 1 (50%≤ PDC <75%. Our findings suggest that the majority of patients (97.9% from PDC Group 2 demonstrated moderate-then-low adherence, whereas 96.4% of patients from PDC Group 4 showed continuously high adherence. The remaining PDC-based categorizations did not capture patients with uniform adherence behavior based on GBTM. In PDC Group 3, 25.3%, 17.2%, and 57.5% of patients exhibited GBTM-defined consistently moderate adherence, moderate-then-low adherence, or high-then-low adherence, respectively. In PDC Group 1, 70.8%, 23.6%, and 5.7% of patients had consistently moderate adherence, high-then-low adherence, and

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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).

  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.

  6. Examining Portfolio-Based Assessment in an Upper-Level Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziegler, Brittany Ann

    2012-01-01

    Historically, students have been viewed as empty vessels and passive participants in the learning process but students actually are active forming their own conceptions. One way student learning is impacted is through assessment. Alternative assessment, which contrasts traditional assessment methods, takes into account how students learn by…

  7. 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 ...

  8. Gross margin as an indicator of the significance of farmer education on the WCR risk assessment in repeated sowing

    OpenAIRE

    Filipović, Jasmina; Stanković, Slađan; Ceranić, Slobodan

    2015-01-01

    Western corn rootworm (WCR) appeared in Serbia in the late 80's and quickly spread, causing increasing losses. Monitoring showed that crop rotation gives good results. On the other hand, domestic animals require a lot of corn and considering the limited land-area, that often demands repeated sowing of corn (continuous cropping), consequently leading to higher pest damages. Through Farmer Field Schools, farmers were educated on WCR risk assessment of repeated corn sowing. The goal was to prolo...

  9. Assessment of potential sublethal effects of various insecticides on key biological traits of the tobacco whitefly, Bemisia tabaci.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Yuxian; Zhao, Jianwei; Zheng, Yu; Weng, Qiyong; Biondi, Antonio; Desneux, Nicolas; Wu, Kongming

    2013-01-01

    The tobacco whitefly Bemisia tabaci is one of the most devastating pests worldwide. Current management of B. tabaci relies upon the frequent applications of insecticides. In addition to direct mortality by typical acute toxicity (lethal effect), insecticides may also impair various key biological traits of the exposed insects through physiological and behavioral sublethal effects. Identifying and characterizing such effects could be crucial for understanding the global effects of insecticides on the pest and therefore for optimizing its management in the crops. We assessed the effects of sublethal and low-lethal concentrations of four widely used insecticides on the fecundity, honeydew excretion and feeding behavior of B. tabaci adults. The probing activity of the whiteflies feeding on treated cotton seedlings was recorded by an Electrical Penetration Graph (EPG). The results showed that imidacloprid and bifenthrin caused a reduction in phloem feeding even at sublethal concentrations. In addition, the honeydew excretions and fecundity levels of adults feeding on leaf discs treated with these concentrations were significantly lower than the untreated ones. While, sublethal concentrations of chlorpyrifos and carbosulfan did not affect feeding behavior, honeydew excretion and fecundity of the whitefly. We demonstrated an antifeedant effect of the imidacloprid and bifenthrin on B. tabaci, whereas behavioral changes in adults feeding on leaves treated with chlorpyrifos and carbosulfan were more likely caused by the direct effects of the insecticides on the insects' nervous system itself. Our results show that aside from the lethal effect, the sublethal concentration of imidacloprid and bifenthrin impairs the phloem feeding, i.e. the most important feeding trait in a plant protection perspective. Indeed, this antifeedant property would give these insecticides potential to control insect pests indirectly. Therefore, the behavioral effects of sublethal concentrations of

  10. Assessing and enhancing the introductory science course in physics and biology: Peer instruction, classroom demonstrations, and genetics vocabulary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagen, Adam Paul

    Most introductory college science courses in the United States are taught in large lectures with students rarely having the opportunity to think critically about the material being presented nor to participate actively. Further, many classes focus on teaching rather than learning, that is, the transfer of information as opposed to actual student understanding. This thesis focuses on three studies about the assessment and enhancement of learning in undergraduate science courses. We describe the results of an international survey on the implementation of Peer Instruction (PI), a collaborative learning pedagogy in which lectures are interspersed with short conceptual questions designed to challenge students to think about the material as it is being presented. We present a portrait of the many instructors teaching with PI and the settings in which it is being used as well as data on the effectiveness of PI in enhancing student learning in diverse settings. The wide variety of implementations suggests that PI is a highly adaptable strategy that can work successfully in almost any environment. We also provide recommendations for those considering adopting PI in their classes. Classroom demonstrations are an important aspect of many introductory science courses, but there is little evidence supporting their educational effectiveness. We explore the effect of different modes of presentation on enhancing student learning from demonstrations. Our results show that students who actively engage with a demonstration by predicting the outcome before it is conducted are better able to recall and explain the scenario posed by that demonstration. As preliminary work for the creation of an inventory of conceptual understanding in introductory biology, we discuss results from a survey of vocabulary familiarity and understanding in an undergraduate genetics course. Students begin introductory classes with significant gaps in their understanding, some of which are retained beyond

  11. Recellularization of biological heart valves with human vascular cells: in vitro hemocompatibility assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schopka, Simon; Schmid, Franz-Xaver; Hirt, Stephan; Birnbaum, Dietrich E; Schmid, Christof; Lehle, Karla

    2009-01-01

    Coverage of cardiovascular bioprostheses with autologous endothelium is used for the purpose of improving blood compatibility. The aim of our study was to analyze endothelialization potential of glutaraldehyde-fixed heart valves, cellular functions of seeded endothelial cells (EC), and the impact of a two-stage seeding protocol using human vascular fibroblasts (FB) and EC from saphenous veins (HSVEC) on cellular functional properties in vitro. Adherence and morphology of adhered cells were assessed by scanning electronic microscopy and immunohistochemistry. Reproducible, complete surface coverage with EC was established on decellularized and glutaraldehyde-fixed bovine pericardium. Analyzing functional properties of cells directly adhered to biomaterial revealed nonproliferative cells, which were capable of inflammatory stimulation in terms of TNF-induced increase in interleukin-6 secretion and adhesion of inflammatory cells. Furthermore, EC showed sustained antithrombotic properties quantified by platelet adhesion onto EC and prostacyclin secretion by EC. Preseeding with vascular fibroblasts using a two-stage seeding protocol induced EC proliferation and improved inflammatory and anti-thrombotic functions. Cardiovascular biomaterials differ significantly in their potential to allow for adhesion of human EC. Successfully endothelialized biomaterial, however, revealed cellular properties which are likely to be favorable to improving performance of biomaterials. Two-stage seeding adds regenerative potential and improves cell functions of adherent EC.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Concordance between myocardial perfusion scan assessed by SPECT and fractional flow reserve findings for detection of significant ischemia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Morteza Safi

    2016-09-01

    Conclusion: FFR and MPI with SPECT techniques showed significant concordance for detection of myocardial ischemia, regardless of the type of diseased coronary arteries. In this context, SPECT has high sensitivity and NPV for detection of ischemia compared with FFR.

  15. Finding of No Significant Impact : 2010 Environmental Assessment and Proposed Hunting Plan for Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This FONSI states that the Sherburne NWR Hunting Plan does not constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment.

  16. Basic rhythm of myoelectric activities of sphcter of Oddi and its biological significance%Oddi括约肌肌电活动的基本方式

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李虎城; 董家鸿; 陈飞; 邹一平; 李为民

    2010-01-01

    Objective To observe the basic rhythm of myoelectrie activities of sphcter of Oddi (SO)and explore its biological significance.Methods Healthy adult rabbits(n=32)were randomized into 4 groups with 8 in each.The first group was for recording of myoelectric activities of SO after keeping fast for 18 hours.The second group was manipulated to observe the myoelectric activities of SO after food infusion through the stoma in stomach.The myoelectric activities of SO in the third group were monitored after the classical Nardi test was performed on these rabbits.The fourth group was used to observe the myoelectric activities of SO after the cholinergic receptors had been blocked.Using the double claw metal electrodes which were put into SO and duodenum through the plasma membrance,the myoelectric signal were recorded with RM6240 multi-channel physiologic recording and signal processing system and non-stop recording was conducted for 120-150 mins.Results 1)Spike Potentials of SO with the frequency was observed in rabbits that had been fasting.2)Myoelectronic activity of SO was observed in rabbits infused with 50 ml milk through stoma.3)After the administration of 1 mg morphine and 1 mg neostigmine i.v,the myoelectric activities of SO were noted as long-lasting persistent MASO.4)Administration of anisodamine 1 mg(i.v.)in the empty abdomen group dismissed SPSO and MASO.This state lasted for 120 min before SPSO gradually reconverted to the state of empty abdomen.Conclusion There are four patterns of myoelectric activities of SO,i.e,tensional waves under empty abdomen indicating a state in which the SO kept a basic tension level.Peristaltic waves under intake of food.Spastic waves under the stimulation of drugs and relaxant waves under the post-ganglionic block of cholinergic receptors were observed in the present study.Correspondingly,their mechanic locomotion is inferred as the basic tensional state to faciliate the deposition and condensation of bile,the peristalsis for the

  17. Modeling of S-Nitrosothiol-Thiol Reactions of Biological Significance: HNO Production by S-Thiolation Requires a Proton Shuttle and Stabilization of Polar Intermediates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivanova, Lena V; Cibich, Daniel; Deye, Gregory; Talipov, Marat R; Timerghazin, Qadir K

    2017-02-07

    Nitroxyl (HNO), a reduced form of the important gasotransmitter nitric oxide, exhibits its own unique biological activity. A possible biological pathway of HNO formation is the S-thiolation reaction between thiols and S-nitrosothiols (RSNOs). Our density functional theory (DFT) calculations suggested that S-thiolation proceeds through a proton transfer from the thiol to the RSNO nitrogen atom, which increases electrophilicity of the RSNO sulfur, followed by nucleophilic attack by thiol, yielding a charge-separated zwitterionic intermediate structure RSS(+) (R)N(H)O(-) (Zi), which decomposes to yield HNO and disulfide RSSR. In the gas phase, the proton transfer and the S-S bond formation are asynchronous, resulting in a high activation barrier (>40 kcal mol(-1) ), making the reaction infeasible. However, the barrier can decrease below the S-N bond dissociation energy in RSNOs (≈30 kcal mol(-1) ) upon transition into an aqueous environment that stabilizes Zi and provides a proton shuttle to synchronize the proton transfer and the S-S bond formation. These mechanistic features suggest that S-thiolation can easily lend itself to enzymatic catalysis and thus can be a possible route of endogenous HNO production.

  18. 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.

  19. Sequential chemical-biological processes for the treatment of industrial wastewaters: review of recent progresses and critical assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guieysse, Benoit; Norvill, Zane N

    2014-02-28

    When direct wastewater biological treatment is unfeasible, a cost- and resource-efficient alternative to direct chemical treatment consists of combining biological treatment with a chemical pre-treatment aiming to convert the hazardous pollutants into more biodegradable compounds. Whereas the principles and advantages of sequential treatment have been demonstrated for a broad range of pollutants and process configurations, recent progresses (2011-present) in the field provide the basis for refining assessment of feasibility, costs, and environmental impacts. This paper thus reviews recent real wastewater demonstrations at pilot and full scale as well as new process configurations. It also discusses new insights on the potential impacts of microbial community dynamics on process feasibility, design and operation. Finally, it sheds light on a critical issue that has not yet been properly addressed in the field: integration requires complex and tailored optimization and, of paramount importance to full-scale application, is sensitive to uncertainty and variability in the inputs used for process design and operation. Future research is therefore critically needed to improve process control and better assess the real potential of sequential chemical-biological processes for industrial wastewater treatment.

  20. Assessment of Diverse Biological Indicators in Gulf War Illness: Are They Replicable Are They Related

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-10-01

    investigators. There are also few instances in which measures related to different biological systems, for example, measures of brain function and...War veterans in the region who have come forward to enroll in VA’s Gulf War Registry since their return from Desert Storm . Accessing veterans through

  1. Biological effect markers for exposure to carcinogenic compound and their relevance for risk assessment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Delft, J.H.M. van; Baan, R.A.; Roza, L.

    1998-01-01

    In this review data are summarized on biomarkers that are used for biological effect monitoring of human populations exposed to genotoxic carcinogens. The biomarkers are DNA and protein adducts and cytogenetic effects. Most of these biomarkers are relevant for the process of carcinogenesis. Emphasis

  2. Assessing Students' Ability to Trace Matter in Dynamic Systems in Cell Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Christopher D.; Anderson, Charles W.; Heidemann, Merle; Merrill, John E.; Merritt, Brett W.; Richmond, Gail; Sibley, Duncan F.; Parker, Joyce M.

    2006-01-01

    College-level biology courses contain many complex processes that are often taught and learned as detailed narratives. These processes can be better understood by perceiving them as dynamic systems that are governed by common fundamental principles. Conservation of matter is such a principle, and thus tracing matter is an essential step in…

  3. An Assessment of the Quantitative Skills of Students Taking Introductory College Biology Courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsh, Jeffrey Flake; Anderson, Norman D.

    The mathematical skills possessed by students taking introductory biology courses were investigated. A list of 23 mathematical competencies was identified as part of the development of a 46-item multiple-choice test to measure the extent to which students possessed these competencies. The Biomathematics Skills Test (BST) was administered to…

  4. Assessment of Diverse Biological Indicators in Gulf War Illness: Are They Replicable Are They Related

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-04-01

    treatments, it is imperative to establish a more definitive and integrated understanding of GWI pathophysiology. This study utilizes a case-control design...distinguished by biological measures, deployment experiences /exposures, or illness severity and characteristics. Veterans are evaluated over two...initiated. Over the performance period, we continued to experience extended institutional delays in project start-up associated with our local and

  5. Assessment of Blood Contamination in Biological Fluids Using MALDI-TOF MS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laks, Katrina; Kirsipuu, Tiina; Dmitrijeva, Tuuli; Salumets, Andres; Palumaa, Peep

    2016-06-01

    Biological fluid sample collection often includes the risk of blood contamination that may alter the proteomic profile of biological fluid. In proteomics studies, exclusion of contaminated samples is usually based on visual inspection and counting of red blood cells in the sample; analysis of specific blood derived proteins is less used. To fill the gap, we developed a fast and sensitive method for ascertainment of blood contamination in crude biological fluids, based on specific blood-derived protein, hemoglobin detection by MALDI-TOF MS. The MALDI-TOF MS based method allows detection of trace hemoglobin with the detection limit of 0.12 nM. UV-spectrometry, which was used as reference method, was found to be less sensitive. The main advantages of the presented method are that it is fast, effective, sensitive, requires very small sample amount and can be applied for detection of blood contamination in various biological fluids collected for proteomics studies. Method applicability was tested on human cerebrospinal and follicular fluid, which proteomes generally do not contain hemoglobin, however, which possess high risk for blood contamination. Present method successfully detected the blood contamination in 12 % of cerebrospinal fluid and 24 % of follicular fluid samples. High percentage of contaminated samples accentuates the need for initial inspection of proteomic samples to avoid incorrect results from blood proteome overlap.

  6. 78 FR 65606 - Availability of the Final Environmental Assessment (EA) and a Finding of No Significant Impact...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-11-01

    ... Significant Impact (FONSI) of the J. Phil Campbell, Sr., National Resource Conservaton Center (JPC-NRCC... land and real estate at the JPC-NRCC in Watkinsville, Georgia, to the Board of Regents of the... the FONSI. Copies of the Final EA and FONSI for the JPC-NRCC Land Transfer are also available...

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. The diastolic flow velocity-pressure gradient relation and dpv50 to assess the hemodynamic significance of coronary stenoses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marques, Koen M J; van Eenige, Machiel J; Spruijt, Hugo J; Westerhof, Nico; Twisk, Jos; Visser, Cees A; Visser, Frans C

    2006-12-01

    To evaluate the hemodynamic impact of coronary stenoses, the fractional (FFR) or coronary flow velocity reserve (CFVR) usually is measured. The combined measurement of instantaneous flow velocity and pressure gradient (v-dp relation) is rarely used in humans. We derived from the v-dp relation a new index, dp(v50) (pressure gradient at flow velocity of 50 cm/s), and compared the diagnostic performance of dp(v50), CFVR, and FFR. Before coronary angiography was performed, patients underwent noninvasive stress testing. In all coronary vessels with an intermediate or severe stenosis, the flow velocity, aortic, and distal coronary pressure were measured simultaneously with a Doppler and pressure guidewire after induction of hyperemia. After regression analysis of all middiastolic flow velocity and pressure gradient data, the dp(v50) was calculated. With the use of the results of noninvasive stress testing, the dp(v50) cutoff value was established at 22.4 mmHg. In 77 patients, 124 coronary vessels with a mean 39% (SD 19) diameter stenosis were analyzed. In 43 stenoses, ischemia was detected. We found a sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy of 56%, 86%, and 76% for CFVR; 77%, 99%, and 91% for FFR; and 95%, 95%, and 95% for dp(v50). To establish that dp(v50) is not dependent on maximal hyperemia, dp(v50) was recalculated after omission of the highest quartile of flow velocity data, showing a difference of 3%. We found that dp(v50) provided the highest sensitivity and accuracy compared with FFR and CFVR in the assessment of coronary stenoses. In contrast to CFVR and FFR, assessment of dp(v50) is not dependent on maximal hyperemia.

  12. 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

    2013-06-01

    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.

  13. 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…

  14. 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.

  15. Assessment of biological activity of residual or recurrent tumor of neuroblastoma with sup 131 I-metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) scintigraphy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Murashima, Shuichi; Takeda, Kan; Okuda, Yasuyuki; Nakagawa, Tsuyoshi; Sakurai, Minoru (Mie Univ., Tsu (Japan). School of Medicine)

    1990-12-01

    {sup 131}I-metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) is now accepted as a useful agent for the diagnosis of adrenal medullary tumor. The aim of this paper is to evaluate {sup 131}I-MIBG for the assessment of the biological activity of residual or recurrent tumor after initial treatment in patients with neuroblastoma. Nineteen scans were performed for 9 patients with a mean age of 3.5 years. Computed tomography demonstrated paravertebral mass in six and metastatic liver tumor in four cases. Anterior and posterior images of the thorax and abdomen were taken 48-72 hours after injection of 7.4-18.5 MBq (0.2-0.5 mCi) {sup 131}I-MIBG. Positive images were obtained in 8 scans for four patients and followed by rapid growth of tumor and increased urinary dopamine. The biological activity of residual or recurrent tumor was thought to be high in these patients. Eleven scans for 5 patients revealed negative. In four of them, the tumor size reduced and urinary dopamine value remained within normal limits on the follow-up study. The tumor was assumed to have low biological activity in these patients. One case in which initial scan was negative became positive on the follow-up study. {sup 131}I-MIBG activity did not well correlate with urinary vanillylmandelic acid as compared with urinary dopamine. In conclusion, {sup 131}I-MIBG proved to be useful for assessing biological activity of residual or recurrent tumor of neuroblastoma and estimating the prognosis of the patient. (author).

  16. 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.

  17. 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...

  18. 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.

  19. 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...

  20. New insight on the biological role of p53 protein as a tumor suppressor: re-evaluation of its clinical significance in triple-negative breast cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Min-Sun; Park, In Ae; Kim, Ji Young; Chung, Yul Ri; Im, Seock-Ah; Lee, Kyung-Hun; Moon, Hyeong-Gon; Han, Wonshik; Noh, Dong-Young; Ryu, Han Suk

    2016-08-01

    While p53 mutation is found in the majority of triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) and despite recent developments in p53-targeting agents, their therapeutic application is still limited by the absence of standard biomarkers and ambiguousness of its essential biological role in cancer. Whole sections from 305 TNBC cases were stained for p53 to determine the correlation with lymph node metastasis and clinical outcomes in the whole cohort as well as in stratified patient groups according to AJCC stage and the use of adjuvant chemotherapy. Reduced immunohistochemical expression of p53 was an independent risk factor for lymph node metastasis. p53 overexpression was predictive of better clinical outcome in all patients (P = 0.012, disease-free survival and P = 0.008, overall survival) and the stratified cohorts of those who had early breast cancer and received adjuvant chemotherapy. Suppression of endogenous mutant p53 by siRNA and induction of wild-type p53 repressed TNBC cell invasion in vitro. In TNBC, increased immunohistochemical expression of p53 may reflect the accumulation of wild-type p53 rather than the mutant form. Strong p53 protein expression may serve as a favorable prognostic indicator and provide evidence for the use of specific agents targeting p53.

  1. Multilineage dysplasia as assessed by immunophenotype has no impact on clinical-biological features and outcome of NPM1-mutated acute myeloid leukemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mannelli, Francesco; Ponziani, Vanessa; Bonetti, Maria Ida; Bencini, Sara; Cutini, Ilaria; Gianfaldoni, Giacomo; Scappini, Barbara; Pancani, Fabiana; Rondelli, Tommaso; Benelli, Matteo; Caporale, Roberto; Grazia Gelli, Anna Maria; Peruzzi, Benedetta; Longo, Giovanni; Bosi, Alberto

    2015-10-01

    The presence of multilineage dysplasia (MLD) by morphology at diagnosis in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) defines a separate subset in the World Health Organization classification with still-debated prognostic value. A major controversy concerns MLD's role in NPM1-mutated (NPM1⁺) AML, which correlates with good prognosis. We used flow cytometry (FC), an emerging technique for assessing dysplasia, to investigate MLD in NPM1⁺ AML by an immunophenotypic score (IPS), a technique previously adopted in myelodysplastic syndrome. Eighty-five intensively treated NPM1⁺ AML cases were studied. Patients were grouped according to the combination of data in maturing cell compartments. FC-assessed dysplasia showed a significant correlation with morphology-assessed dysplasia, showing the efficacy of this method in highlighting dysplasia in AML. Except for MLD, IPS did not influence any patient- or disease-related characteristics at diagnosis. Furthermore, IPS did not influence complete remission rate, disease-free survival, or overall survival. By investigating NPM1 status on separated cell compartments, we established a correlation between FC-assessed MLD and belonging to AML clone. This study shows that dysplasia evaluated by immunophenotype has no impact on clinical-biological characteristics or on outcome of NPM1⁺ AML. Dysplasia is part of the spectrum of NPM1⁺ AML, and the prognostic stratification of this category of patients should not be based upon it.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

    . 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......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......, 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...

  4. Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact: On-Site Treatment of Low Level Mixed Waste

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    N/A

    1999-03-22

    The Department of Energy (DOE) has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) (DOE/EA-1292) to evaluate the proposed treatment of low level mixed waste (LLMW) at the Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site (Site). The purpose of the action is to treat LLMW in order to meet the Land Disposal Restrictions specified by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act and the waste acceptance criteria of the planned disposal site(s). Approximately 17,000 cubic meters (m{sup 3}) of LLMW are currently stored at the Site. Another 65,000 m{sup 3}of LLMW are likely to be generated by Site closure activities (a total of 82,000 m{sup 3} of LLMW). About 35,000 m{sup 3} can be directly disposed of off-site without treatment, and most of the remaining 47,000 m{sup 3} of LLMW can be treated at off-site treatment, storage, and disposal facilities. However, some LLMW will require treatment on-site, either because it does not meet shipping requirements or because off-site treatment is not available for these particular types of LLMW. Currently, this LLMW is stored at the Site pending the development and implementation of effective treatment processes. The Site needs to treat this LLMW on-site prior to shipment to off-site disposal facilities, in order to meet the DOE long-term objective of clean up and closure of the Site. All on-site treatment of LLMW would comply with applicable Federal and State laws designed to protect public health and safety and to enhance protection of the environment. The EA describes and analyzes the environmental effects of the proposed action (using ten mobile treatment processes to treat waste on-site), and the alternatives of treating waste onsite (using two fixed treatment processes), and of taking no action. The EA was the subject of a public comment period from February 3 to 24, 1999. No written or other comments regarding the EA were received.

  5. 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.

  6. A saprobic index for biological assessment of river water quality in Brazil (Minas Gerais and Rio de Janeiro states).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Junqueira, Marilia Vilela; Friedrich, Günther; Pereira de Araujo, Paulo Roberto

    2010-04-01

    Based upon several years of experience in investigations with macrozoobenthos in rivers in the states of Minas Gerais and Rio de Janeiro, a biological assessment system has been developed to indicate pollution levels caused by easily degradable organic substances from sewers. The biotic index presented here is aimed at determining water's saprobic levels and was, therefore, named the "Saprobic Index for Brazilian Rivers in Minas Gerais and Rio de Janeiro states" (ISMR). For this purpose, saprobic valences and weights have been established for 122 taxa of tropical macrozoobenthos. Investigations were carried out in little, medium sized and big rivers in mountains and plains. Through ISMR, a classification of water quality and the respective cartographic representation can be obtained. Data collection and treatment methods, as well as the limitations of the biotic index, are thoroughly described. ISMR can also be used as an element to establish complex multimetric indexes intended for an ecological integrity assessment, where it is essential to indicate organic pollution.

  7. HYDRO BIOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT OF WATER BODIES FROM MIRAJ TAHSIL MAHARASHTRA: A COMPARATIVE STUDY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. B. Sarwade

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Physicochemical features of freshwater bodies were regulated by number of factors. It includes temperature, turbidity, pH, total alkalinity, carbondioxide, dissolved oxygen, biological oxygen demand, chemical oxygen demand, phosphate, chloride and hardness. Present study focused on the determination of hydrobiological parameters during different seasons in January, 2011 – December, 2013 in three lakes of Miraj tahsil. The study indicated marked variation in some of the factors as turbidity, CO₂, DO, COD, Alkalinity etc. Obtained data showed, variations in pollution status of three lakes. As per observations and analysis contamination of lakes was Bharatnagar > Mhaishal > Brahmanath lake.

  8. AOX removal from industrial wastewaters using advanced oxidation processes: assessment of a combined chemical-biological oxidation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luyten, J; Sniegowski, K; Van Eyck, K; Maertens, D; Timmermans, S; Liers, Sven; Braeken, L

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, the abatement of adsorbable halogenated organic compounds (AOX) from an industrial wastewater containing relatively high chloride concentrations by a combined chemical and biological oxidation is assessed. For chemical oxidation, the O(3)/UV, H(2)O(2)/UV and photo-Fenton processes are evaluated on pilot scale. Biological oxidation is simulated in a 4 h respirometry experiment with periodic aeration. The results show that a selective degradation of AOX with respect to the matrix compounds (expressed as chemical oxygen demand) could be achieved. For O(3)/UV, lowering the ratio of O(3) dosage to UV intensity leads to a better selectivity for AOX. During O(3)-based experiments, the AOX removal is generally less than during the H(2)O(2)-based experiments. However, after biological oxidation, the AOX levels are comparable. For H(2)O(2)/UV, optimal operating parameters for UV and H(2)O(2) dosage are next determined in a second run with another wastewater sample.

  9. Racial bias in pain assessment and treatment recommendations, and false beliefs about biological differences between blacks and whites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffman, Kelly M; Trawalter, Sophie; Axt, Jordan R; Oliver, M Norman

    2016-04-19

    Black Americans are systematically undertreated for pain relative to white Americans. We examine whether this racial bias is related to false beliefs about biological differences between blacks and whites (e.g., "black people's skin is thicker than white people's skin"). Study 1 documented these beliefs among white laypersons and revealed that participants who more strongly endorsed false beliefs about biological differences reported lower pain ratings for a black (vs. white) target. Study 2 extended these findings to the medical context and found that half of a sample of white medical students and residents endorsed these beliefs. Moreover, participants who endorsed these beliefs rated the black (vs. white) patient's pain as lower and made less accurate treatment recommendations. Participants who did not endorse these beliefs rated the black (vs. white) patient's pain as higher, but showed no bias in treatment recommendations. These findings suggest that individuals with at least some medical training hold and may use false beliefs about biological differences between blacks and whites to inform medical judgments, which may contribute to racial disparities in pain assessment and treatment.

  10. A quantitative approach for assessing significant improvements in elite sprint performance: has IGF-1 entered the arena?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ernst, Simon; Simon, Perikles

    2013-06-01

    The introduction of doping substances and methods in sports triggers noticeable effects on physical performance in metric sports. Here, we use time series analysis to investigate the recent development in male and female elite sprinting performance. Time series displaying the average of the world's top 20 athletes were analyzed employing polynomial spline functions and moving averages. Outstanding changes in performance over time were statistically analyzed by Welch's t-test and by Cohen's measurements of effect. For validation we exemplarily show that our analysis is capable of indicating the effect of the introduction of in- and out-of-competition doping testing on women's shot put as well as the effects of the market introduction of erythropoietin (EPO) and the introduction of EPO and continuous erythropoiesis receptor activator (CERA) testing on 5000 m top 20 male performances. Time series analysis for 100 m men reveals a highly significant (p < 0.001) drop by more than 0.1 s from 2006 to 2011 with a large effect size of 0.952. This is roughly half of the effect size that can be found for the development of the 5000 m performance during the introduction of EPO between 1991 and 1996. While the men's 200 m sprinting performance shows a similar development, the women's 100 m and 200 m sprinting performances only show some minor abnormalities. We will discuss here why the striking sex-specific improvement in sprinting performance is indicative for a novel, very effective doping procedure with insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) being the primary candidate explaining the observed effects.

  11. 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..

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. The assessment of the coke wastewater treatment efficacy in rotating biological contractor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cema, G; Żabczyński, S; Ziembińska-Buczyńska, A

    2016-01-01

    Coke wastewater is known to be relatively difficult for biological treatment. Nonetheless, biofilm-based systems seem to be promising tool for such treatment. That is why a rotating biological contactor (RBC) system focused on the Anammox process was used in this study. The experiment was divided into two parts with synthetic and then real wastewater. It was proven that it is possible to treat coke wastewater with RBC but such a procedure requires a very long start-up period for the nitritation (190 days), as well as for the Anammox process, where stable nitrogen removal over 70% was achieved after 400 days of experiment. Interestingly, it was possible at a relatively low (20.2 ± 2.2 °C) temperature. The polymerase chain reaction-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (PCR-DGGE) based monitoring of the bacterial community showed that its biodiversity decreased when the real wastewater was treated and it was composed mainly of GC-rich genotypes, probably because of the modeling influence of this wastewater and the genotypes specialization.

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  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. 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

  1. Protocols for assessing radiofrequency interactions with gold nanoparticles and biological systems for non-invasive hyperthermia cancer therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corr, Stuart J; Cisneros, Brandon T; Green, Leila; Raoof, Mustafa; Curley, Steven A

    2013-08-28

    Cancer therapies which are less toxic and invasive than their existing counterparts are highly desirable. The use of RF electric-fields that penetrate deep into the body, causing minimal toxicity, are currently being studied as a viable means of non-invasive cancer therapy. It is envisioned that the interactions of RF energy with internalized nanoparticles (NPs) can liberate heat which can then cause overheating (hyperthermia) of the cell, ultimately ending in cell necrosis. In the case of non-biological systems, we present detailed protocols relating to quantifying the heat liberated by highly-concentrated NP colloids. For biological systems, in the case of in vitro experiments, we describe the techniques and conditions which must be adhered to in order to effectively expose cancer cells to RF energy without bulk media heating artifacts significantly obscuring the data. Finally, we give a detailed methodology for in vivo mouse models with ectopic hepatic cancer tumors.

  2. The Validity of Project Assessment in an Advanced Level Biology Examination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, C. R.; And Others

    1995-01-01

    Assessment of practical objectives by means of a project which occurred in an operational Advanced level examination in the United Kingdom is analyzed for construct validity. As in previous research, low correlation were found between scores of (n=218) candidates on the project and on the other components of the examination. (18 references)…

  3. Visual Representations on High School Biology, Chemistry, Earth Science, and Physics Assessments

    Science.gov (United States)

    LaDue, Nicole D.; Libarkin, Julie C.; Thomas, Stephen R.

    2015-01-01

    The pervasive use of visual representations in textbooks, curricula, and assessments underscores their importance in K-12 science education. For example, visual representations figure prominently in the recent publication of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS Lead States in Next generation science standards: for states, by states.…

  4. Assessment of Diverse Biological Indicators in Gulf War Illness: Are They Replicable? Are They Related?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-10-01

    controls in a protocol that includes physical and neuropsychological evaluations, neuroimaging (MRI, fMRI, DTI), adrenal function tests, and diverse immune...War illness, neuroimaging, neuropsychological testing, immune function, hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal testing 16. SECURITY CLASSIFICATION OF: 17...fMRI, diffusion tensor imaging), neuropsychological evaluations, assessment of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal function, standard diagnostic laboratory

  5. Eastern Baltic cod in distress: biological changes and challenges for stock assessment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Eero, Margit; Hjelm, Joakim; Behrens, Jane;

    2015-01-01

    The eastern Baltic (EB) cod (Gadus morhua) stock was depleted and overexploited for decades until the mid-2000s, when fishing mortality rapidly declined and biomass started to increase, as shown by stock assessments. These positive developments were partly assigned to effective management measure...

  6. Assessing the Attitudes and Beliefs of Preservice Middle School Science Teachers toward Biologically Diverse Animals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagler, Ron; Wagler, Amy

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to assess the relationship between United States (US) preservice middle school science teacher characteristics, their attitude toward a specific animal and their belief concerning the likelihood of incorporating information about that specific animal into their future science classroom. The study participants…

  7. Environmental Health and Aging: Activity, Exposure and Biological Models to Improve Risk Assessment and Health Promotion

    Science.gov (United States)

    The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other public health agencies are concerned that the environmental health of America’s growing population of older adults has not been taken into consideration in current approaches to risk assessment. The reduced capacity to respo...

  8. 77 FR 46373 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Hemlock Woolly...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-08-03

    ..., abortion of buds, and the eventual death of infested trees. Four predatory beetles have been introduced to... woolly adelgid. The environmental assessment considers the effects of, and alternatives to, the release... United States. APHIS' review and analysis of the potential environmental effects associated with...

  9. [Biological weapons].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerwat, K; Becker, S; Wulf, H; Densow, D

    2010-08-01

    Biological weapons are weapons of mass destruction that use pathogens (bacteria, viruses) or the toxins produced by them to target living organisms or to contaminate non-living substances. In the past, biological warfare has been repeatedly used. Anthrax, plague and smallpox are regarded as the most dangerous biological weapons by various institutions. Nowadays it seems quite unlikely that biological warfare will be employed in any military campaigns. However, the possibility remains that biological weapons may be used in acts of bioterrorism. In addition all diseases caused by biological weapons may also occur naturally or as a result of a laboratory accident. Risk assessment with regard to biological danger often proves to be difficult. In this context, an early identification of a potentially dangerous situation through experts is essential to limit the degree of damage.

  10. Assessment of the differential linear coherent scattering coefficient of biological samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conceição, A. L. C.; Antoniassi, M.; Poletti, M. E.

    2010-07-01

    New differential linear coherent scattering coefficient, μ CS, data for four biological tissue types (fat pork, tendon chicken, adipose and fibroglandular human breast tissues) covering a large momentum transfer interval (0.07≤ q≤70.5 nm -1), resulted from combining WAXS and SAXS data, are presented in order to emphasize the need to update the default data-base by including the molecular interference and the large-scale arrangements effect. The results showed that the differential linear coherent scattering coefficient demonstrates influence of the large-scale arrangement, mainly due to collagen fibrils for tendon chicken and fibroglandular breast samples, and triacylglycerides for fat pork and adipose breast samples at low momentum transfer region. While, at high momentum transfer, the μ CS reflects effects of molecular interference related to water for tendon chicken and fibroglandular samples and, fatty acids for fat pork and adipose samples.

  11. 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.

  12. U1-RNP and Toll-like receptors in the pathogenesis of mixed connective tissue diseasePart II. Endosomal TLRs and their biological significance in the pathogenesis of mixed connective tissue disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paradowska-Gorycka, Agnieszka

    2015-01-01

    Mixed connective tissue disease (MCTD) is a chronic autoimmune immunopathological disease of unknown etiology, which is characterized by the presence of various clinical symptoms and the presence of autoantibodies against U1-RNP particles. The U1-RNP component engages immune cells and their receptors in a complex network of interactions that ultimately lead to autoimmunity, inflammation, and tissue injury. The anti-U1-RNP autoantibodies form an immune complex with self-RNA, present in MCTD serum, which can act as endosomal Toll-like receptor (TLR) ligands. Inhibition of TLRs by nucleic acids is a promising area of research for the development of novel therapeutic strategies against pathogenic infection, tumorigenesis and autoimmunity. In this review we summarize current knowledge of endogenous TLRs and discuss their biological significance in the pathogenesis of MCTD. In part I we described the structure, biological function and significance of the U1-RNP complex in MCTD.

  13. Central Colorado Assessment Project - Application of integrated geologic, geochemical, biologic, and mineral resource studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, T.L.; Church, S.E.; Caine, J.S.; Schmidt, T.S.; deWitt, E.H.

    2008-01-01

    Central Colorado is one of the fastest-growing regions in the Western United States. Population along the Front Range increased more than 30 percent between 1990 and 2000 (http://www.demographia.com/db-metro3newworld.htm) with some counties within the study area, such as Park County, experiencing greater than 100-percent growth (http://www.censusscope.org/us/s8/rank_popl_growth.html). This growth has caused tremendous demand for natural resources and has created challenging land-management issues related to the interface between wilderness and urban expansion. Management of this wilderness/urban interface will benefit from current digital geoscience information collected by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Central Colorado Assessment Project that began in 2003. Approximately 20,800 square miles (53,800 km2) of land divided almost equally between the public and private sectors were part of the assessment.

  14. Instream biological assessment of NPDES point source discharges at the Savannah River Site, 1997-1998

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Specht, W.L.

    2000-02-28

    The Savannah River Site currently has 33 permitted NPDES outfalls that have been permitted by the South Carolina Department of Health an Environmental Control to discharge to SRS streams and the Savannah River. In order to determine the cumulative impacts of these discharges to the receiving streams, a study plan was developed to perform in-stream assessments of the fish assemblages, macroinvertebrate assemblages, and habitats of the receiving streams.

  15. Ecological health assessments based on whole effluent toxicity tests and the index of biological integrity in temperate streams influenced by wastewater treatment plant effluents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ra, Jin Sung; Kim, Sang Don; Chang, Nam Ik; An, Kwang-Guk

    2007-09-01

    Whole effluent toxicity (WET) tests and ecosystem health assessments, based on test guidelines of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) and index of biological integrity (IBI), were conducted on various streams located in Youngsan River watershed, Korea. The WET tests showed that about 33 and 82% of wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) exhibited significant toxicity to Daphnia magna and Selenastrum capricornutum, respectively. Small WWTPs with low discharge volumes contributed less than 1% to the total stream toxicity. Fish community compositions and trophic guild analysis showed that the diversity index was greater in the control than in impacted streams, and the proportion of omnivore species was less in the control. Also, ecosystem health assessments, based on the IBI, showed distinct differences between the control and impacted sites of WWTPs. Model values of the IBI, based on 12 stream data sets, averaged 28, which is judged as a fair to poor condition according to the U.S. EPA criteria. The mean IBI in the control sites was 42, indicating good stream condition, whereas the impacted sites was scored 21, indicating poor condition. Overall, WET tests and ecosystem health assessments suggested the WWTP effluents had evident toxic effects on the biota, and impacted the species compositions and trophic guilds, resulting in degradation of the stream ecosystem health.

  16. 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 M

    2013-03-01

    The term monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) was coined in 1978. The recent advances in our knowledge about MGUS and smoldering multiple myeloma (SMM) have helped us better understand the pathogenesis of myeloma. It seems 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 like whole genome sequencing continue to improve 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.

  17. Assessing Soil Biological Properties of Natural and Planted Forests in the Malaysian Tropical Lowland Dipterocarp Forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daljit S. Karam

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: A study was conducted to evaluate and compare the soil biological properties of a natural forest and an 18-year-old stand of Shorea leprosula in Chikus Forest Reserve, Perak, Malaysia. Approach: Soils were sampled at depths of 0-15 cm (topsoil and 15-30 cm (subsoil in six subplots (20×20 m of natural forest (C1 and of a planted S. leprosula (C2 plot. Fresh composite soil samples were kept in UV-sterilized polyethylene bags prior to analysis in the laboratory. The microbial population count was determined using a spread-plate count technique. The microbial enzymatic activity was elucidated using a Fluorescein Diacetate (FDA hydrolysis assay; microbial biomass was extracted using a rapid chloroform fumigation extraction method. The Microbial Biomass C (MBC was determined by wet dichromate oxidation; Kjeldahl digestion and a distillation method were used for evaluation of Microbial Biomass N (MBN. Results: Results indicate that only the microbial biomass N and the population count in the soil at the 0-15 cm depth were found to be higher in C1 compared to C2. The higher microbial population count in the soil at the 0-15 cm depth of C1 compared to C2 was enhanced by the large amount of organic matter that serves as a suitable medium for soil microbial growth. The higher MBN in the C1 soil was also influenced by the high content of organic material available that encourages activities of decomposing bacteria to take place. Similarities in the soil biological properties of the plots with regard to enzymatic activity and microbial biomass Care believed to be influenced by the same topographic gradient. The higher MBC/MBN ratios found in soils of C2 compared to C1 were due to the low availability of N compared to C, might result from N utilization by soil microbes for organic material decomposition. Conclusion: There are similarities in microbial enzymatic activity and biomass C, but not in microbial population counts and biomass N

  18. A cell-based systems biology assessment of human blood to monitor immune responses after influenza vaccination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoek, Kristen L; Samir, Parimal; Howard, Leigh M; Niu, Xinnan; Prasad, Nripesh; Galassie, Allison; Liu, Qi; Allos, Tara M; Floyd, Kyle A; Guo, Yan; Shyr, Yu; Levy, Shawn E; Joyce, Sebastian; Edwards, Kathryn M; Link, Andrew J

    2015-01-01

    Systems biology is an approach to comprehensively study complex interactions within a biological system. Most published systems vaccinology studies have utilized whole blood or peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) to monitor the immune response after vaccination. Because human blood is comprised of multiple hematopoietic cell types, the potential for masking responses of under-represented cell populations is increased when analyzing whole blood or PBMC. To investigate the contribution of individual cell types to the immune response after vaccination, we established a rapid and efficient method to purify human T and B cells, natural killer (NK) cells, myeloid dendritic cells (mDC), monocytes, and neutrophils from fresh venous blood. Purified cells were fractionated and processed in a single day. RNA-Seq and quantitative shotgun proteomics were performed to determine expression profiles for each cell type prior to and after inactivated seasonal influenza vaccination. Our results show that transcriptomic and proteomic profiles generated from purified immune cells differ significantly from PBMC. Differential expression analysis for each immune cell type also shows unique transcriptomic and proteomic expression profiles as well as changing biological networks at early time points after vaccination. This cell type-specific information provides a more comprehensive approach to monitor vaccine responses.

  19. Linking biological integrity and watershed models to assess the impacts of historical land use and climate changes on stream health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Einheuser, Matthew D; Nejadhashemi, A Pouyan; Wang, Lizhu; Sowa, Scott P; Woznicki, Sean A

    2013-06-01

    Land use change and other human disturbances have significant impacts on physicochemical and biological conditions of stream systems. Meanwhile, linking these disturbances with hydrology and water quality conditions is challenged due to the lack of high-resolution datasets and the selection of modeling techniques that can adequately deal with the complex and nonlinear relationships of natural systems. This study addresses the above concerns by employing a watershed model to obtain stream flow and water quality data and fill a critical gap in data collection. The data were then used to estimate fish index of biological integrity (IBI) within the Saginaw Bay basin in Michigan. Three methods were used in connecting hydrology and water quality variables to fish measures including stepwise linear regression, partial least squares regression, and fuzzy logic. The IBI predictive model developed using fuzzy logic showed the best performance with the R (2) = 0.48. The variables that identified as most correlated to IBI were average annual flow, average annual organic phosphorus, average seasonal nitrite, average seasonal nitrate, and stream gradient. Next, the predictions were extended to pre-settlement (mid-1800s) land use and climate conditions. Results showed overall significantly higher IBI scores under the pre-settlement land use scenario for the entire watershed. However, at the fish sampling locations, there was no significant difference in IBI. Results also showed that including historical climate data have strong influences on stream flow and water quality measures that interactively affect stream health; therefore, should be considered in developing baseline ecological conditions.

  20. Biological impact assessment of nanomaterial used in nanomedicine. introduction to the NanoTEST project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juillerat-Jeanneret, Lucienne; Dusinska, Maria; Fjellsbø, Lise Marie; Collins, Andrew R; Handy, Richard D; Riediker, Michael

    2015-05-01

    Therapeutic nanoparticles (NPs) are used in nanomedicine as drug carriers or imaging agents, providing increased selectivity/specificity for diseased tissues. The first NPs in nanomedicine were developed for increasing the efficacy of known drugs displaying dose-limiting toxicity and poor bioavailability and for enhancing disease detection. Nanotechnologies have gained much interest owing to their huge potential for applications in industry and medicine. It is necessary to ensure and control the biocompatibility of the components of therapeutic NPs to guarantee that intrinsic toxicity does not overtake the benefits. In addition to monitoring their toxicity in vitro, in vivo and in silico, it is also necessary to understand their distribution in the human body, their biodegradation and excretion routes and dispersion in the environment. Therefore, a deep understanding of their interactions with living tissues and of their possible effects in the human (and animal) body is required for the safe use of nanoparticulate formulations. Obtaining this information was the main aim of the NanoTEST project, and the goals of the reports collected together in this special issue are to summarise the observations and results obtained by the participating research teams and to provide methodological tools for evaluating the biological impact of NPs.

  1. Assessing Current Instructional Practices in General Biology One (BIO1010) and Arguing for a Model-Centered Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manthey, Seth

    This collected papers dissertation focused on the argument for the need to adapt and develop a model-centered General Biology I course through the analyses of current instructional practices at a large, public, Hispanic-serving university. This dissertation included a comparison of General Biology I course sections taught in two differing formats, one is a traditional lecture with face-to-face meetings and the other is an online instruction setting. The comparison of these sections was accomplished through the use of a conceptual inventory, student attitude survey, drop-fail-withdraw (DFW) rates, and Social Network Analysis. This comparison found that there was no detectible significant difference between course type for both the conceptual understanding and formation of student-to-student networks. It was also found that there was a significant difference between course type when looking at students' attitudes towards Biology and success in the two course types. Additionally in a second study the project used a phenomoenographic analysis of student interviews that explored the students' use of scientific models when asked about plant cells and animal cells. It was found that during the analysis of students' ideas that students predominantly used a single model function. The cell types of focus in the second study were two models that were identified, in a third study, through a coded analysis of faculty interviews and textbook analysis. These models are viewed as essential for students to possess an understanding of upon completion of General Biology I. The model-based course that this study argued for is based on a curricular framework initially developed for use in introductory physics courses. University Modeling Instruction courses in physics (UMI-P) have been linked to improved student conceptual understanding positive attitudinal shifts, and decreased DFW rates. UMI, however, has not been expanded for implementation within the other science disciplines

  2. Assessment of The Biological Integrity of The Native Vegetative Community In A Surface Flow Constructed Wetland Treating Industrial Park Contaminants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. C. Galbrand

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available A study was conducted to evaluate the biological integrity of a constructed wetland receiving landfill leachate and stormwater runoff from the Burnside Industrial Park, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. The biological integrity of the constructed wetland was tested in the second growing season using vegetative community monitoring. The metrics analyzed were species diversity, species heterogeneity (dominance and exotic/invasive species abundance. There was no significant difference in the plant species diversity between the constructed wetland and the reference site. However, the constructed wetland supported a higher plant species richness than the reference site. The top three species in the constructed wetland were tweedy’s rush (Juncus brevicaudatus, soft rush (Juncus effusus and fowl mannagrass (Glyceria striata. In total, these three species occupied 46.4% of the sampled population. The top three species in the reference site were soft rush (Juncus effusus, sweetgale (Myrica gale and woolgrass (Scirpus cyperinus. In total, these three species occupied a more reasonable 32.6% of the sampled population. The reference site supported greater biological integrity as it had greater heterogeneity and a smaller abundance of exotic and invasive species compared to the constructed wetland (3.8% versus 10.7%. Although poor heterogeneity and the presence of weedy, exotic species can be a sign of degraded biological health and future problems, these are also common indicators of a system simply undergoing early succession. As the constructed wetland matures, its plant biodiversity may actually decrease, but its integrity, as measured by exotic and invasive species abundance as well as heterogeneity, is expected to increase, so long as invasive species present in the constructed wetland remain controlled through weeding during the first few growing seasons.

  3. Serum Cytokine Profile by ELISA in Patients with Echinococcal Cysts of the Liver: A Stage-Specific Approach to Assess Their Biological Activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luca Piccoli

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available To investigate the usefulness of serum cytokine dosage in the clinical management of cystic echinococcosis (CE, we analyzed serum levels of Th1 and Th2 cytokines in patients with hepatic CE in different cyst stages, CE1-2 (active, CE3a-3b (transitional, and CE4-5 (inactive. Ex vivo assessment of Th1 (IFN-γ and Th2 (IL-4, IL-13, and IL-10 cytokines in sera was carried out using ELISA. IL-10 was undetectable in all serum samples of patients and controls, while a few sera contained measurable amounts of IFN-γ, IL-4, and IL-13. No statistically significant difference was found between the percentages of positive samples for each cytokine and the different groups analyzed (patients/controls, stage, number, location, and size of the cyst, serology, and sex of patients, with the exception of the association of IL-4 and IL-13 with the cyst stage. Overall, this investigation showed many limits of serum cytokine dosage as a marker of biological activity of echinococcal cysts. Because of low sensitivity and lack of specificity of this test, we believe that other ways to evaluate ex vivo biological activity of the cysts should be explored.

  4. A Linked Physical and Biological Framework to Assess Biogeochemical Dynamics in a Shallow Estuarine Ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buzzelli, C. P.; Wetzel, R. L.; Meyers, M. B.

    1999-12-01

    The littoral zone of Chesapeake Bay contains a mosaic of shallow vegetated and nonvegetated habitats with biotic components that are sensitive to changes in biological and physical driving factors. Static and dynamic modelling frameworks provide an integrative way to study complex hydrodynamic and biogeochemical processes in linked estuarine habitats. In this study we describe a spatial simulation model developed and calibrated relative to a specific littoral zone, estuarine ecosystem. The model consisted of four distinct habitats that contained phytoplankton, sediment microalgae, Zostera marina (eelgrass), and Spartina alterniflora. There was tidal exchange of phytoplankton, particulate and dissolved organic carbon and dissolved inorganic nitrogen between the littoral zone ecosystem and the offshore channel. Physical exchange and biogeochemical transformations within the habitats determined water column concentrations in each habitat. Predicted subtidal water column concentrations and Z. marina and S. alterniflora biomass were within the variability of validation data and the predicted annual rates of net primary production were similar to measured rates. Phytoplankton accounted for 17%, sediment microalgae 46%, the Z. marina community 24% and S. alterniflora 13% of the annual littoral zone primary production. The linked habitat model provided insights into producer, habitat and ecosystem carbon and nitrogen properties that might not have been evident with stand-alone models. Although it was an intra-ecosystem sink for particulate carbon, the seagrass habitat was a DOC source and responsible for over 30% of the littoral zone carbon and nitrogen primary production. The model predicted that the Goodwin Islands littoral zone was a sink of channel derived POC, but a source of DOC to the surrounding estuary. The framework created in this study of estuarine ecosystem dynamics is applicable to many different aquatic systems over a range of spatial and temporal scales.

  5. Preliminary assessment of growth and survival of green alder (Alnus viridis), a potential biological stabilizer on fly ash disposal sites

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Marcin Pietrzykowski; Wojciech Krzaklewski; Bartłomiej Wos´

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents preliminary assessment of seedling survival and growth of green alder (Alnus viridis (Chaix) DC. in Lam. & DC.) planted on fly ash disposal sites. This kind of post-industrial site is extremely hard to biologically stabilize without top-soiling. The experiment started with surface preparation using NPK start-up mineral fertilizer at 60–36–36 kg ha-1 followed by initial stabil-ization through hydro-seeding with biosolids (sewage sludge 4 Mg ha-1 dry mass) and a mixture of grasses (Dactylis glomerata L. and Lolium multiflorum Lam.) (200 kg ha-1). Subsequently, three-years-old green alder seedlings were planted in plots on two substrate variants:the control (directly on combustion waste) and plots with 3 dm3 lignite culm from a nearby mine introduced into the planting pit. Five years of preliminary monitoring show good survival seedling rates and growth parameters (height (h), average increase in height (△h), number of shoots (Lo) and leaf nitrogen supply in the fly ash disposal habitat. Treatment of the site with a combination of lignite culm in planting pits and preliminary surface preparation by hydro-seeding and mineral fertilization had the most positive effect on green alder seedling parameters. The results indicate that it is possible and beneficial to use green alder for biological stabilization on fly ash disposal sites.

  6. Proof of concept for a banding scheme to support risk assessments related to multi-product biologics manufacturing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Card, Jeffrey W; Fikree, Hana; Haighton, Lois A; Blackwell, James; Felice, Brian; Wright, Teresa L

    2015-11-01

    A banding scheme theory has been proposed to assess the potency/toxicity of biologics and assist with decisions regarding the introduction of new biologic products into existing manufacturing facilities. The current work was conducted to provide a practical example of how this scheme could be applied. Information was identified for representatives from the following four proposed bands: Band A (lethal toxins); Band B (toxins and apoptosis signals); Band C (cytokines and growth factors); and Band D (antibodies, antibody fragments, scaffold molecules, and insulins). The potency/toxicity of the representative substances was confirmed as follows: Band A, low nanogram quantities exert lethal effects; Band B, repeated administration of microgram quantities is tolerated in humans; Band C, endogenous substances and recombinant versions administered to patients in low (interferons), intermediate (growth factors), and high (interleukins) microgram doses, often on a chronic basis; and Band D, endogenous substances present or produced in the body in milligram quantities per day (insulin, collagen) or protein therapeutics administered in milligram quantities per dose (mAbs). This work confirms that substances in Bands A, B, C, and D represent very high, high, medium, and low concern with regard to risk of cross-contamination in manufacturing facilities, thus supporting the proposed banding scheme.

  7. Biological Assessment of the Continued Operation of Los Alamos National Laboratory on Federally Listed Threatened and Endangered Species

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hansen, Leslie A. [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States). Ecology and Air Quality Group

    2006-09-19

    This biological assessment considers the effects of continuing to operate Los Alamos National Laboratory on Federally listed threatened or endangered species, based on current and future operations identified in the 2006 Site-wide Environmental Impact Statement for the Continued Operation of Los Alamos National Laboratory (SWEIS; DOE In Prep.). We reviewed 40 projects analyzed in the SWEIS as well as two aspects on ongoing operations to determine if these actions had the potential to affect Federally listed species. Eighteen projects that had not already received U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) consultation and concurrence, as well as the two aspects of ongoing operations, ecological risk from legacy contaminants and the Outfall Reduction Project, were determined to have the potential to affect threatened or endangered species. Cumulative impacts were also analyzed.

  8. Assessment of the removal of estrogenicity in biological nutrient removal wastewater treatment processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ogunlaja, O.O., E-mail: oogunlaj@uwaterloo.ca; Parker, W.J., E-mail: wjparker@uwaterloo.ca

    2015-05-01

    The removal of estrogenicity in a University of Cape Town-biological nutrient removal (UCT-BNR) wastewater treatment process was investigated using pilot and bench scale systems, batch experiments and mathematical modeling. In the pilot BNR process, 96 ± 5% of the estrogenicity exerted by the influent wastewater was removed by the treatment process. The degradation efficiencies in the anaerobic, anoxic and aerobic zones of the pilot BNR bioreactor were 11 ± 9%, 18 ± 2% and 93 ± 10%, respectively. In order to further understand the performance of the BNR process in the removal of estrogenicity from wastewater, a bench scale BNR process was operated with synthetic wastewater dosed with E1 and E2. The removal of estrogenicity in the bench scale system (95 ± 5%) was comparable to the pilot BNR process and the degradation efficiencies were estimated to be 8 ± 0.8%, 38 ± 4% and 85 ± 22% in the anaerobic, anoxic and aerobic zones, respectively. A biotransformation model developed to predict the fate of E1 and E2 in batch tests using the sludge from the BNR process was calibrated using the data from the experiments. The biotransformation rate constants for the transformation of E2 to E1 were estimated as 71 ± 1.5, 31 ± 3.3 and 1 ± 0.9 L g COD{sup −1} d{sup −1} for the aerobic, anoxic and anaerobic batch tests, respectively, while the corresponding biotransformation rate constants for the transformation of E1 were estimated to be 7.3 ± 1.0, 3 ± 2.0, and 0.85 ± 0.6 L·g COD{sup −1} d{sup −1}. A steady state mass balance model formulated to describe the interactions between E2 and E1 in BNR activated sludge reasonably described the fate of E1 and E2 in the BNR process. - Highlights: • Comparable estrogenicity removal was observed from two BNR processes. • Pseudo first order model described the transformation of E2 and E1 in BNR process. • Biotransformation of E1 in BNR activated sludge controls the degradation of E2.

  9. Toxicity of Aqueous Filmforming Foams to Marine Organisms: Literature Review and Biological Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    1985-07-01

    BRINE SHRIMP The second species selected for AFFF toxicity testing was Artemia salina, commonly known as brine shrimp . Toxicity to brine shrimp was...the actual EC5 0 is closer to 4.0-gm/liter. Similarly, there was no significant toxicity to brine shrimp nauplii ( Artemia salina) at concentrations of...gm/liter. The estimated 96-hour LCr0 for brine shrimp , Artemia salina, is between 4.0 and 6.0 gm/liter. These LC5 0 concentrations are in the

  10. Chemical and biological assessment of sediments and water of Khalid Khor, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samara, Fatin; Elsayed, Yehya; Soghomonian, Balik; Knuteson, Sandra L

    2016-10-15

    Water and sediments were collected on March 2013 and April 2014 from Khalid Khor creek area in United Arab Emirates to assess their quality parameters. The pH and alkalinity of the water samples were measured and their values were similar to those of shallow saltwater ecosystems. In addition, elemental analyses and organic compounds were done using Inductively Coupled Plasma-Optical Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-OES) and Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectroscopy (GC-MS), respectively. The concentration of heavy and trace metals in the water samples were within the acceptable limits except for lead which showed high values, while the concentrations of metals in the sediment samples were relatively high and ranged from 6517 to 13,768mg/kg. GC-MS analysis showed the presence of polyaromatic heterocyclic (PAHs) compounds in sediments near the shipping area and in amounts classified as highly carcinogenic; however, no polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) were identified. Moreover, fecal bacterial contamination in water was detected in concentrations that range between 300 and 10,140 organisms/100mL.

  11. Application of biological measures for stream integrity assessment in south-east Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silveira, M P; Baptista, D F; Buss, D F; Nessimian, J L; Egler, M

    2005-02-01

    The sensitivity of eleven metrics using macroinvertebrate assemblages were evaluated in an environmental gradient in a tropical river in south-east Brazil. Eight sites were sampled in an altitudinal range of 160-650 m.a.s.l. during 1999 (April and August) and 2000 (February). Four substrates were sampled at each site: riffle litter, pool litter, stony substrates and sediment. Correspondence Analysis indicated that assemblages were primarily more influenced by physical changes (like deforestation and erosion processes) than the water chemistry. The sensitivity of each metric was evaluated through the application of box-and-whisker plot method by its power to assess impairment (metrics should be able to discriminate reference sites from impaired sites) and natural variability (metrics should not discriminate two reference sites). Metrics that failed in at least one of the above premises were not considered as sensitive. In this study, the most sensitive metrics were Shannon index, BMWP-ASPT, %_EPT, and relative abundance of EPT to Chironomidae.

  12. [Preclinical in vitro and in vivo models for the assessment of biological activity in biosimilarity studies].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escobedo-Moratilla, Abraham; Barba de la Rosa, Ana Paulina; Pérez-Urizar, José Trinidad

    2015-01-01

    A drug that contains a recombinant protein as an active principle is called a biotechnological drug or biopharmaceutical.There are currently over 300 biopharmaceuticals worldwide. Many of these contains a similar active principle (biosimilar drug) as other previously registered (innovator drug). It has suggested that due to the complex implications in a formulation containing a protein, the manufacturing process is a key factor for efficacy and safety requirements. In fact, certain variability has been detected of the protein properties in different lots (or batches) of the same manufacturer, which produce changes at a clinical level. For this reason, the evaluation of biosimilar drugs has acquired great relevance, being the preclinical level of one of the more important stages of the development due to its lower cost (with respect to the clinical level) and its high capacity to detect formulation-manufacture problems. However, the demonstration of comparability at physicochemical, preclinical, and clinical levels is required in order to achieve market registration. In this review the in vitro and in vivo models used for the assessment of proposed biosimilars will be discussed.

  13. The biological significance of brain barrier mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saunders, Norman R; Habgood, Mark D; Møllgård, Kjeld

    2016-01-01

    , but more work is required to evaluate the method before it can be tried in patients. Overall, our view is that much more fundamental knowledge of barrier mechanisms and development of new experimental methods will be required before drug targeting to the brain is likely to be a successful endeavor......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...

  14. A REVIEW: BIOLOGICAL SIGNIFICANCES OF HETEROCYCLIC COMPOUNDS.

    OpenAIRE

    Mukhtyar. S. Saini; Aran Kumar; Jaya Dwivedi; Rakesh Singh

    2013-01-01

    Heterocyclic chemistry offers an example for the lack of distinct demarcations; in fact, it pervades the plurality of the other chemical disciplines. Heterocycles are inextricably woven into the life processes. The vital interest of the pharmaceutical and agrochemical industries in heterocycles is often connected with their natural occurrence. Synthetic chemistry provides cornucopia of heterocyclic systems. More than 90% of new drugs contain heterocycles and the interface between chemistry an...

  15. Biological significance of glucocorticoid receptor beta

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2001-01-01

    Alternative splicing of the human glucocorticoid receptor (hGR) primary transcript produces two receptor isoforms, termed hGRα and hGRβ. hGRα is a ligand-activated transcription factor which, in the hormone-bound state, modulates the expression of glucocorticoid-responsive genes by binding to specific glucocorticoid response element (GRE) DNA sequences. In contrast, hGRβ dose not bind glucocorticoids and is transcriptionally inactive. We demonstrate here that hGRβ inhibits the hormone-induced, hGRα-mediated stimulations of gene expression, including glucocorticoid-responsive reporter gene (cat) and endogenous p21 gene. We also demonstrate that hGRβ can inhibit hGRα-mediated regulation of proliferation and differentiation of a human osteosarcoma cell line (HOS-8603). Our studies on the expression of hGR mRNA in nephrotic syndrome patients indicate that the hGRα/hGRβ mRNA ratio in peripheral white blood cell of hormone-resistant patients is lower than that of hormone-sensitive patients and health volunteers. These results indicate that hGRβ may be a physiologically and pathophysiologically relevant endogenous inhibitor of hGRα

  16. The biological significance of brain barrier mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saunders, Norman R; Habgood, Mark D; Møllgård, Kjeld;

    2016-01-01

    that prevent the entry of many drugs of therapeutic potential into the brain. We outline those that have been tried and discuss why they may so far have been largely unsuccessful. Currently, a promising approach appears to be focal, reversible disruption of the blood-brain barrier using focused ultrasound...

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2008-01-01

    [R] 1), then repeated in May 2005 (R2) and May 2006 (R3) in the same group of individuals. TIMP-1 levels were determined by the MAC15 ELISA assay and with the Abbott ARCHITECT i2000 Immunoanalyzer. 2: Circadian variation was evaluated in plasma collected 7 times within a 24-hour period (n=16). 3......: Effects of physical exercise were evaluated in plasma collected before and after bicycling (n=14). In studies 2 and 3 TIMP-1 levels were determined with the MAC15 ELISA assay only. RESULTS: A significant correlation between TIMP-1 MAC15 and ARCHITECT i2000 was shown (rs=0.78, p....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...

  18. Full factorial design, physicochemical characterisation and biological assessment of cyclosporine A loaded cationic nanoparticles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermans, Kris; Van den Plas, Dave; Everaert, Arnout; Weyenberg, Wim; Ludwig, Annick

    2012-09-01

    Cyclosporine A loaded poly(lactide-co-glycolide) nanoparticles coated with chitosan were prepared using the o/w emulsification solvent evaporation method. A 2(3) full factorial design was used to investigate the effect of 3 preparation parameters on the particle size, polydispersity index, zeta potential and drug release. In vitro experiments were performed in order to evaluate the cytotoxicity and anti-inflammatory activity of the developed nanoparticles. Particle sizes varied from 156 nm to 314 nm, and polydispersity index values of 0.07-0.56 were obtained depending on the different preparation parameters. All nanoparticles showed positive zeta potential values. Nanoparticles prepared with the highest concentration chitosan retained a positive zeta potential after dispersion in simulated lachrymal fluid, which supports the possibility of an electrostatic interaction between these particles and the negatively charged mucus layer at the eye. The in vitro release profile of cyclosporine A from the chitosan-coated nanoparticles was strongly dependent on the release medium used. None of the cationic nanoparticle formulations showed significant cytotoxicity compared to the negative control using human epithelial cells (HaCaT). Cyclosporine A encapsulated in the various nanoparticle formulations remained anti-inflammatory active as significant suppression of interleukine-2 secretion in concanavalin A stimulated Jurkat T cells was observed.

  19. Combined biological and chemical assessment of estrogenic activities in wastewater treatment plant effluents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aerni, Hans-Rudolf; Kobler, Bernd; Rutishauser, Barbara V; Wettstein, Felix E; Fischer, René; Giger, Walter; Hungerbühler, Andreas; Marazuela, M Dolores; Peter, Armin; Schönenberger, René; Vögeli, A Christiane; Suter, Marc J-F; Eggen, Rik I L

    2004-02-01

    Five wastewater treatment plant effluents were analyzed for known endocrine disrupters and estrogenicity. Estrogenicity was determined by using the yeast estrogen screen (YES) and by measuring the blood plasma vitellogenin (VTG) concentrations in exposed male rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss). While all wastewater treatment plant effluents contained measurable concentrations of estrogens and gave a positive response with the YES, only at two sites did the male fish have significantly increased VTG blood plasma concentrations after the exposure, compared to pre-exposure concentrations. Estrone (E1) concentrations ranged up to 51 ng L(-1), estradiol (E2) up to 6 ng L(-1), and ethinylestradiol (EE2) up to 2 ng L(-1) in the 90 samples analyzed. Alkylphenols, alkylphenolmonoethoxylates and alkylphenoldiethoxylates, even though found at microg L(-1) concentrations in effluents from wastewater treatment plants with a significant industrial content, did not contribute much to the overall estrogenicity of the samples taken due to their low relative potency. Expected estrogenicities were calculated from the chemical data for each sample by using the principle of concentration additivity and relative potencies of the various chemicals as determined with the yeast estrogen screen. Measured and calculated estradiol equivalents gave the same order of magnitude and correlated rather well (R(2)=0.6).

  20. Assessment of biochar safety via its leachate characterization using physicochemical and biological assays

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dailianis, Stefanos; Tsouloufa, Argyro; Antonopoulou, Maria; Konstantinou, Ioannis; Karapanagioti, Hrissi K.; Manariotis, Ioannis D.

    2016-04-01

    The present study investigates the physicochemical composition of water aliquots derived from biochars produced from the pyrolysis of malt spent rootlets, in combination with the concomitant toxicological profile in each case. Specifically, physicochemical parameters and heavy metal ions were determined in aliquots of six (6) serial washes of biochar (1.5 g of solid was added in column and washed 6 times with 40 mL of distilled water per wash). The chemical analysis of each aliquot showed increased levels of PO4-3, Cl-, NO3-, SO4-2, F- and Br- in the first wash aliquot, followed by a significant decrease over washes. Non-detectable concentrations were observed after 3 washes in almost all cases. Similarly, the increased levels of Zn, Be, Cs, Mn, V and Se determined in the first wash aliquot were eliminated followed successive washes. In parallel, the toxic potency of each wash aliquot was recorded by (a) a multi-well test plate bioassay, using instars II-III larvae of the fairy shrimp Thamnocephalus platyurus, hatched from cysts derived from Screening Toxicity test supplied by MicroBio Tests Inc. (Thamnotoxkit FTM) and (b) the Microtox bioassay, using bioluminescent bacteria Vibrio fischeri. According to the results, first and second wash aliquots were toxic for T. platyurus (LC50 values of 22.12 and 68.28% v/v, respectively), followed by a significant elimination of toxicity after further washes in all cases. Similarly, the Microtox bioassay showed a significant inhibition of Vibrio luminescence after treatment for a period of 5-90 min (98-100% inhibition of luminescence) with the first wash aliquot (EC50 ≤ 0.01 % v/v), with no toxicity to be observed after successive washes. According to the results, at least one wash of biochar is prerequisite for improving its safety for further use. Moreover, the removal of both inorganic and organic, such as metal ions, substances commonly washed by the biochar, could be a crucial step for its sustainable use and final

  1. Biological assessment of bisphenol A degradation in water following direct photolysis and UV advanced oxidation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Pei-Jen; Linden, Karl G; Hinton, David E; Kashiwada, Shosaku; Rosenfeldt, Erik J; Kullman, Seth W

    2006-11-01

    Endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs) are exogenous environmental chemicals that can interfere with normal hormone function and present a potential threat to both environmental and human health. The fate, distribution and degradation of EDCs is a subject of considerable investigation. To date, several studies have demonstrated that conventional water treatment processes are ineffective for removal of most EDCs and in some instances produce multiple unknown transformation products. In this study we have investigated the use of direct photolysis with low-pressure (LP) Hg UV lamps and UV+hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)) advanced oxidation process (AOP) for the degradation of a prototypic endocrine disrupter, bisphenol A (BPA), in laboratory water. Removal rates of BPA and formation of degradation products were determined by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analysis. Changes in estrogenic activity were evaluated using both in vitro yeast estrogen screen (YES) and in vivo vitellogenin (VTG) assays with Japanese medaka fish (Oryzias latipes). Our results demonstrate that UV alone did not effectively degrade BPA. However, UV in combination with H(2)O(2) significantly removed BPA parent compound and aqueous estrogenic activity in vitro and in vivo. Removal rates of in vivo estrogenic activity were significantly lower than those observed in vitro, demonstrating differential sensitivities of these bioassays and that certain UV/AOP metabolites may retain estrogenic activity. Furthermore, the UV/H(2)O(2) AOP was effective for reducing larval lethality in treated BPA solutions, suggesting BPA degradation occurred and that the degradation process did not result in the production of acutely toxic intermediates.

  2. 浅析档案袋评价在英语教学中的应用意义%The application significance of portfolio assessment in English teaching

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    刘佳莹

    2016-01-01

    教学评价在教学中十分关键,具有导向和质量监控的作用。然而传统的英语教学评价法有很多弊端。本文从传统英语教学评价中存在的问题入手,并分析了档案袋评价法的优点,旨在探析档案袋评价在英语教学中的应用意义。%The teaching evaluation is very important, it has the function of guidance and quality control in teaching. However, there are many disadvantages in traditional English teaching evaluation methods. This paper starts with the problems existing in traditional English teaching evaluation, and analyzes advantages of the portfolio assessment, which aims to explore the application significance of the portfolio assessment in English teaching.

  3. Coupling geochemical and biological approaches to assess the availability of cadmium in freshwater sediment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dabrin, Aymeric, E-mail: aymeric.dabrin@cemagref.fr; Durand, Cyrielle L.; Garric, Jeanne; Geffard, Olivier; Ferrari, Benoit J.D.; Coquery, Marina

    2012-05-01

    Sediments are considered as a sink for metals, and the assessment of metal bioavailability for benthic organisms represents a great challenge. Diffusive Gradient in Thin films (DGT), developed to measure labile metals in aquatic media, have more recently been applied to sediment. Nevertheless, few studies have determined the relation between measurements from DGT and bioaccumulation in different benthic organisms. The aim of our work was to determine if labile metal measured by DGT in sediment is representative of bioavailable metal for benthic organisms. We focused our work on Cd and chose to use the diversity of ecological traits from different organisms to better understand the measurement given by DGT. We exposed simultaneously DGT and 3 macroinvertebrates species (the chironomid, Chironomus riparius; the amphipod, Gammarus fossarum; the mudsnail, Potamopyrgus antipodarum) to a natural sediment Cd-spiked at environmental relevant concentrations. The nature of sediment-bound Cd was also determined by means of sequential extractions in order to better interpret DGT measurements. Cadmium concentrations were determined in DGT and in the 3 organisms after one week of exposure. Results provided by DGT indicated that Cd was poorly released from particulate phase to pore water, suggesting that Cd measured by DGT was representative of the pore water labile fraction. Sequential extractions showed that the percentage of Cd bound to carbonate fraction increased simultaneously with Cd-spiking level; hence, this Cd fraction was poorly reactive to supply DGT demand. Cadmium accumulation rates were similar between DGT measurements and P. antipodarum, suggesting that labile Cd in pore waters was representative of bioavailable Cd for this species. Cadmium accumulation rates in C. riparius were higher than in DGT, demonstrating that C. riparius can mobilize Cd bound to carbonate phase. G. fossarum showed the lowest Cd accumulation rates, suggesting that they were mainly exposed

  4. A systematic genetic assessment of 1,433 sequence variants of unknown clinical significance in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 breast cancer-predisposition genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Easton, Douglas F; Deffenbaugh, Amie M; Pruss, Dmitry; Frye, Cynthia; Wenstrup, Richard J; Allen-Brady, Kristina; Tavtigian, Sean V; Monteiro, Alvaro N A; Iversen, Edwin S; Couch, Fergus J; Goldgar, David E

    2007-11-01

    Mutation screening of the breast and ovarian cancer-predisposition genes BRCA1 and BRCA2 is becoming an increasingly important part of clinical practice. Classification of rare nontruncating sequence variants in these genes is problematic, because it is not known whether these subtle changes alter function sufficiently to predispose cells to cancer development. Using data from the Myriad Genetic Laboratories database of nearly 70,000 full-sequence tests, we assessed the clinical significance of 1,433 sequence variants of unknown significance (VUSs) in the BRCA genes. Three independent measures were employed in the assessment: co-occurrence in trans of a VUS with known deleterious mutations; detailed analysis, by logistic regression, of personal and family history of cancer in VUS-carrying probands; and, in a subset of probands, an analysis of cosegregation with disease in pedigrees. For each of these factors, a likelihood ratio was computed under the hypothesis that the VUSs were equivalent to an "average" deleterious mutation, compared with neutral, with respect to risk. The likelihood ratios derived from each component were combined to provide an overall assessment for each VUS. A total of 133 VUSs had odds of at least 100 : 1 in favor of neutrality with respect to risk, whereas 43 had odds of at least 20 : 1 in favor of being deleterious. VUSs with evidence in favor of causality were those that were predicted to affect splicing, fell at positions that are highly conserved among BRCA orthologs, and were more likely to be located in specific domains of the proteins. In addition to their utility for improved genetics counseling of patients and their families, the global assessment reported here will be invaluable for validation of functional assays, structural models, and in silico analyses.

  5. Affective Norms for 4900 Polish Words Reload (ANPW_R): Assessments for Valence, Arousal, Dominance, Origin, Significance, Concreteness, Imageability and, Age of Acquisition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imbir, Kamil K

    2016-01-01

    In studies that combine understanding of emotions and language, there is growing demand for good-quality experimental materials. To meet this expectation, a large number of 4905 Polish words was assessed by 400 participants in order to provide a well-established research method for everyone interested in emotional word processing. The Affective Norms for Polish Words Reloaded (ANPW_R) is designed as an extension to the previously introduced the ANPW dataset and provides assessments for eight different affective and psycholinguistic measures of Valence, Arousal, Dominance, Origin, Significance, Concreteness, Imageability, and subjective Age of Acquisition. The ANPW_R is now the largest available dataset of affective words for Polish, including affective scores that have not been measured in any other dataset (concreteness and age of acquisition scales). Additionally, the ANPW_R allows for testing hypotheses concerning dual-mind models of emotion and activation (origin and subjective significance scales). Participants in the current study assessed all 4905 words in the list within 1 week, at their own pace in home sessions, using eight different Self-assessment Manikin (SAM) scales. Each measured dimension was evaluated by 25 women and 25 men. The ANPW_R norms appeared to be reliable in split-half estimation and congruent with previous normative studies in Polish. The quadratic relation between valence and arousal was found to be in line with previous findings. In addition, nine other relations appeared to be better described by quadratic instead of linear function. The ANPW_R provides well-established research materials for use in psycholinguistic and affective studies in Polish-speaking samples.

  6. Synthesis and biological assessment of simplified analogues of the potent microtubule stabilizer (+)-discodermolide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mínguez, José M; Kim, Sun-Young; Giuliano, Kenneth A; Balachandran, Raghavan; Madiraju, Charitha; Day, Billy W; Curran, Dennis P

    2003-07-31

    An efficient, convergent and stereocontrolled synthesis of simplified analogues of the potent antimitotic agent (+)-discodermolide has been achieved and several small libraries have been prepared. In all the libraries, the discodermolide methyl groups at C14 and C16 and the C7 hydroxy group were removed and the lactone was replaced by simple esters. Other modifications introduced in each series of analogues were related to C11, C17 and C19 of the natural product. Key elements of the synthetic strategy included (a) elaboration of the main subunits from a common intermediate and (b) fragment couplings using Wittig reactions to install the (Z)-olefins. Library components were analyzed for microtubule-stabilizing actions in vitro, for displacement of [3H]paclitaxel from its binding site on tubulin, for antiproliferative activity against human carcinoma cells, and for cell signaling and mitotic spindle alterations by a multiparameter fluorescence cell-based screening technique. The results show that even significant structural simplification can lead to analogues with actions related to microtubule targeting.

  7. Age and Socioeconomic Gradients of Health of Indian Adults: An Assessment of Self-Reported and Biological Measures of Health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arokiasamy, Perianayagam; Uttamacharya; Kowal, Paul; Chatterji, Somnath

    2016-06-01

    This paper describes overall socioeconomic gradients and the age patterns of socioeconomic gradients of health of Indian adults for multiple health indicators encompassing the multiple aspects of health. Cross-sectional data on 11,230 Indians aged 18 years and older from the WHO-SAGE India Wave 1, 2007 were analyzed. Multivariate logit models were estimated to examine effects of socioeconomic status (education and household wealth) and age on four health domains: self-rated health, self-reported functioning, chronic diseases, and biological health measures. Results show that socioeconomic status (SES) was negatively associated with prevalence of each health measure but with considerable heterogeneity across age groups. Results for hypertension and COPD were inconclusive. SES effects are significant while adjusting for background characteristics and health risk factors. The age patterns of SES gradient of health depict divergence with age, however, no conclusive age pattern emerged for biological markers. Overall, results in this paper dispelled the conclusion of negative SES-health association found in some previous Indian studies and reinforced the hypothesis of positive association of SES with health for Indian adults. Higher prevalence of negative health outcomes and SES disparities of health outcomes among older age-groups highlight need for inclusive and focused health care interventions for older adults across socioeconomic spectrum.

  8. Development of the biology card sorting task to measure conceptual expertise in biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Julia I; Combs, Elijah D; Nagami, Paul H; Alto, Valerie M; Goh, Henry G; Gourdet, Muryam A A; Hough, Christina M; Nickell, Ashley E; Peer, Adrian G; Coley, John D; Tanner, Kimberly D

    2013-01-01

    There are widespread aspirations to focus undergraduate biology education on teaching students to think conceptually like biologists; however, there is a dearth of assessment tools designed to measure progress from novice to expert biological conceptual thinking. We present the development of a novel assessment tool, the Biology Card Sorting Task, designed to probe how individuals organize their conceptual knowledge of biology. While modeled on tasks from cognitive psychology, this task is unique in its design to test two hypothesized conceptual frameworks for the organization of biological knowledge: 1) a surface feature organization focused on organism type and 2) a deep feature organization focused on fundamental biological concepts. In this initial investigation of the Biology Card Sorting Task, each of six analytical measures showed statistically significant differences when used to compare the card sorting results of putative biological experts (biology faculty) and novices (non-biology major undergraduates). Consistently, biology faculty appeared to sort based on hypothesized deep features, while non-biology majors appeared to sort based on either surface features or nonhypothesized organizational frameworks. Results suggest that this novel task is robust in distinguishing populations of biology experts and biology novices and may be an adaptable tool for tracking emerging biology conceptual expertise.

  9. Enabling students to learn: Design, implementation and assessment of a supplemental study strategies course for an introductory undergraduate biology course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sriram, Jayanthi Sanjeevi

    Attrition in the STEM disciplines is a national problem and one of the important reasons for this is student experiences in introductory courses. A myriad of factors influence students' experiences in those courses; inadequate student preparation is one of the most cited reasons. Incoming freshmen often lack the learning strategies required to meaningfully learn and succeed in college courses. Unfortunately, the instructors have limited time and/or have little experience in teaching learning strategies. In this paper, the design, implementation, and evaluation of a Supplemental Course (SC) model that emphasizes learning strategies is presented. SC was offered concurrently with the introductory biology courses for four consecutive semesters (fall 2011 to spring 2013); for 10 weeks in fall 2012 and 7 weeks in the other semesters at Miami University. 10 weeks SC began earlier in the semester than the shorter SC. This study evaluated the effects of the SC on students' (1) performance in the introductory biology course, (2) perceived changes in self-regulation and social support, and (3) experiences in the introductory biology course before, during, and after participation in the SC. A mixed methods approach was used to address these goals. A pre-post survey was administered to obtain students' use of self-regulation strategies and social-support data. Quantitative methods were utilized to analyze content exam grades and changes in self-regulation strategies and social-support. To explore the experiences of the students, semi-structured interviews were conducted, followed by analysis using grounded theory. The findings reveal that participants of the longer duration SC (with an earlier start date) significantly improved in content exam performance, perceived use of self-regulation strategies, and social support compared to the non-participants. Participants of the shorter duration SC (with a later start date) did not significantly improve in content exam performance

  10. Hydrogen as an Indicator to Assess Biological Activity During Trace-Metal Bioremediation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peter R. Jaffe, John Komlos, Derick Brown

    2005-09-27

    2 concentration in the presence of an organic as electron donor is not only dependent on the biokinetic coefficients of the TEAP, but also the concentration of the organic substrate, and that the H2 concentration does not start to change very dramatically as long as the organic substrate concentration remains below the half saturation constant. The results for this phase of research are provided in Section 1. The second phase of research measured steady-state H2 concentrations under iron reducing conditions using NABIR Field Research Center background soil in a simulated bioremediation scenario involving acetate injection to stimulate indigenous microbial activity in a flow-through column. Steady-state H2 concentrations measured during this long-term (500 day) column experiment were higher than observed for iron-reducing conditions in the field even though evidence suggests that iron reduction was the dominant TEAP in the column. Additional column experiments were performed to determine the effect of iron bioavailability on steady-state H2 concentrations using the humics analogue, AQDS (9,10-anthraquinone-2,6-disulfonic acid). The iron reduction rate in the column with AQDS was double the rate in a parallel column without AQDS and lower steady state H2 levels were observed in the presence of AQDS, indicating that even though iron reduction does occur, a decreased bioavailability of iron may inhibit iron reduction such that H2 concentrations increase to levels that are more typical for less energetically favorable reactions (sulfate-reduction, methanogenigesis). The results for this phase of research are in Section 2. A final phase of research measured the effect of carbon concentration and iron bioavailability on surface bound iron reduction kinetics and steady-state H2 levels using synthetic iron oxide coated sand (IOCS). Results show a significant decrease in the microbial iron reduction and acetate oxidation rates for systems with surface bound Fe(III) (IOCS

  11. On the computational assessment of white matter hyperintensity progression: difficulties in method selection and bias field correction performance on images with significant white matter pathology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Valdes Hernandez, Maria del C.; Gonzalez-Castro, Victor; Wang, Xin; Doubal, Fergus; Munoz Maniega, Susana; Wardlaw, Joanna M. [Centre for Clinical Brian Sciences, Department of Neuroimaging Sciences, Edinburgh (United Kingdom); Ghandour, Dina T. [University of Edinburgh, College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, Edinburgh (United Kingdom); Armitage, Paul A. [University of Sheffield, Department of Cardiovascular Sciences, Sheffield (United Kingdom)

    2016-05-15

    Subtle inhomogeneities in the scanner's magnetic fields (B{sub 0} and B{sub 1}) alter the intensity levels of the structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) affecting the volumetric assessment of WMH changes. Here, we investigate the influence that (1) correcting the images for the B{sub 1} inhomogeneities (i.e. bias field correction (BFC)) and (2) selection of the WMH change assessment method can have on longitudinal analyses of WMH progression and discuss possible solutions. We used brain structural MRI from 46 mild stroke patients scanned at stroke onset and 3 years later. We tested three BFC approaches: FSL-FAST, N4 and exponentially entropy-driven homomorphic unsharp masking (E{sup 2}D-HUM) and analysed their effect on the measured WMH change. Separately, we tested two methods to assess WMH changes: measuring WMH volumes independently at both time points semi-automatically (MCMxxxVI) and subtracting intensity-normalised FLAIR images at both time points following image gamma correction. We then combined the BFC with the computational method that performed best across the whole sample to assess WMH changes. Analysis of the difference in the variance-to-mean intensity ratio in normal tissue between BFC and uncorrected images and visual inspection showed that all BFC methods altered the WMH appearance and distribution, but FSL-FAST in general performed more consistently across the sample and MRI modalities. The WMH volume change over 3 years obtained with MCMxxxVI with vs. without FSL-FAST BFC did not significantly differ (medians(IQR)(with BFC) = 3.2(6.3) vs. 2.9(7.4)ml (without BFC), p = 0.5), but both differed significantly from the WMH volume change obtained from subtracting post-processed FLAIR images (without BFC)(7.6(8.2)ml, p < 0.001). This latter method considerably inflated the WMH volume change as subtle WMH at baseline that became more intense at follow-up were counted as increase in the volumetric change. Measurement of WMH volume change remains

  12. A Review: Protein Interaction & Behavior Assessment in Host Cells after Novel Drug Compound Administration using Systems Biology Approach

    OpenAIRE

    Yesha Modi; Harsh Shinde; Natasha Navet; Richa Arya; Nikita Sushil Kumar; Kanika Mehrotra; Fariya Khan; Satyam Khanna; Ruchi Narula

    2014-01-01

    To understand complex biological systems requires the integration of experimental and computational research; in other words systems biology approach. Computational biology, through via different software helps in exploration more than one gene expression at a time and also understanding the connectivity, Systems Biology provides a powerful foundation from which to address critical scientific questions head-on. The reviews in this Insight cover many different aspects of this energetic field, ...

  13. 75 FR 28233 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Asian Citrus Psyllid

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-20

    ... for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of Asian citrus psyllid infestations. We... continental United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of Asian citrus psyllid... include chemical control and the release of an alternative biological control agent, an encyrtid...

  14. Is synthetic biology mechanical biology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holm, Sune

    2015-12-01

    A widespread and influential characterization of synthetic biology emphasizes that synthetic biology is the application of engineering principles to living systems. Furthermore, there is a strong tendency to express the engineering approach to organisms in terms of what seems to be an ontological claim: organisms are machines. In the paper I investigate the ontological and heuristic significance of the machine analogy in synthetic biology. I argue that the use of the machine analogy and the aim of producing rationally designed organisms does not necessarily imply a commitment to mechanical biology. The ideal of applying engineering principles to biology is best understood as expressing recognition of the machine-unlikeness of natural organisms and the limits of human cognition. The paper suggests an interpretation of the identification of organisms with machines in synthetic biology according to which it expresses a strategy for representing, understanding, and constructing living systems that are more machine-like than natural organisms.

  15. The Use of Application Test, a Novel Type of Problem-solving Exercise as a Tool of Teaching and Assessment of Competence in Medical Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szeberenyi, Jozsef; Tigyi, Andras

    1987-01-01

    A new type of multiple-choice test was developed and used in the teaching and assessment of knowledge of medical biology at a university in Hungary. The test includes experimental data and requires students to interpret data and to draw conclusions from results. A description of the test, experiences with the test, and one test are included. (RH)

  16. Technical Assessment: Synthetic Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-01

    Journal of Industrial Microbiology & Biotechnology 33, no. 1 (January 2006): 29. 13 Like specialty materials, DoD has a range of unique needs in the...developing repositories to support their biotechnology industries, but there is not currently such an organization or plan in the US. Finally, regulatory...Emerging Research Field in China.” Biotechnology Advances 29, no. 6–3 (November 2011): 804–14. doi:10.1016/j.biotechadv.2011.06.008. Ratner, Tamar, Ron

  17. Development and Application of a Physiological-based Framework for Assessing the Biological Significance of Military Activities on Threatened and Endangered Animal Species

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-03-17

    gopher tortoises at the six experimental treatments (T1-T6) .................................................. 37 Figure 25. Indicators of hematological ...success and hatchling survival. Females that did not respond to the oxytoxin injection were transported to a local veterinarian and full-body...including (1) hematology (blood smears for differential cell counts and basic hematological analysis), (2) immunological and corticosteroid stress

  18. A universal algorithm for genome-wide in silicio identification of biologically significant gene promoter putative cis-regulatory-elements; identification of new elements for reactive oxygen species and sucrose signaling in Arabidopsis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geisler, Matt; Kleczkowski, Leszek A; Karpinski, Stanislaw

    2006-02-01

    Short motifs of many cis-regulatory elements (CREs) can be found in the promoters of most Arabidopsis genes, and this raises the question of how their presence can confer specific regulation. We developed a universal algorithm to test the biological significance of CREs by first identifying every Arabidopsis gene with a CRE and then statistically correlating the presence or absence of the element with the gene expression profile on multiple DNA microarrays. This algorithm was successfully verified for previously characterized abscisic acid, ethylene, sucrose and drought responsive CREs in Arabidopsis, showing that the presence of these elements indeed correlates with treatment-specific gene induction. Later, we used standard motif sampling methods to identify 128 putative motifs induced by excess light, reactive oxygen species and sucrose. Our algorithm was able to filter 20 out of 128 novel CREs which significantly correlated with gene induction by either heat, reactive oxygen species and/or sucrose. The position, orientation and sequence specificity of CREs was tested in silicio by analyzing the expression of genes with naturally occurring sequence variations. In three novel CREs the forward orientation correlated with sucrose induction and the reverse orientation with sucrose suppression. The functionality of the predicted novel CREs was experimentally confirmed using Arabidopsis cell-suspension cultures transformed with short promoter fragments or artificial promoters fused with the GUS reporter gene. Our genome-wide analysis opens up new possibilities for in silicio verification of the biological significance of newly discovered CREs, and allows for subsequent selection of such CREs for experimental studies.

  19. Clinical significance of power spectral analysis of heart rate variability and {sup 123}I-metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) myocardial imaging for assessing the severity of heart failure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ishida, Yoshio; Fukuoka, Shuji; Shimotsu, Yoriko; Sasaki, Tatsuya; Kamakura, Shiro; Yasumura, Yoshio; Miyatake, Kunio; Shimomura, Katsuro [National Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Osaka (Japan); Tani, Akihiro

    1997-04-01

    The significance of power spectral analysis of heart rate variability and of MIBG myocardial imaging to see the sympathetic nervous function was evaluated in patients with congestive heart failure due to dilated cardiomyopathy. Subjects were 10 normal volunteers and 8 patients with severity NYHA II; 10 normals and 25 patients with NYHA II and III; and 17 patients treated with a beta-blocker (metoprolol 5-40 mg). ECG was recorded with a portable ECG recorder for measuring RR intervals for 24 hr, which were applied for power spectral analysis. Early and delayed imagings with 111 MBq of {sup 123}I-MIBG were performed at 15 min and 4 hr, respectively, after its intravenous administration for acquisition of anterior planar and SPECT images. Myocardial blood flow SPECT was also done with 111 MBq of {sup 201}Tl given intravenously, and difference of total defect scores between MIBG and Tl images was computed. MIBG myocardial sympathetic nerve imaging in those patients was found useful to assess the severity of heart failure, to predict the risk patients for beta-blocker treatment and to assess the risk in complicated ventricular tachycardia. (K.H.)

  20. Assessment of biological effects of environmental pollution along the NW Mediterranean Sea using red mullets as sentinel organisms

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2008-05-15

    A biomonitoring program was carried out in spring and autumn in three pollution hot-spots and sensitive areas of the NW Mediterranean Sea using red mullets (Mullus barbatus) as sentinel organisms and a battery of biomarkers together with gonad histology. In fish from anthropogenic impacted areas (Fos-sur-mer, Cortiou, Arenzano, Delta of Ebro) lysosomal membrane destabilization occurred indicating disturbed health. There were no significant differences in metallothionein (MT) levels among stations. Peroxisomal acyl-CoA oxidase (AOX) activity was highest in fish from Cortiou. Both MT levels and AOX activities were significantly correlated with gamete development. Prevalence of melanomacrophage centers were high in Cortiou in all samplings and in Fos-sur-mer in September samplings. In conclusion, the application of a battery of biomarkers in red mullets provided relevant data for the assessment of environmental pollution in the NW Mediterranean Sea but also showed the difficulties of using native fish as sentinels. For future studies caging strategies are recommended. - Application of biomarkers in red mullets is promising to assess environmental pollution in the NW Mediterranean Sea.

  1. Management of Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients with Interstitial Lung Disease: Safety of Biological Antirheumatic Drugs and Assessment of Pulmonary Fibrosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mori, Shunsuke

    2015-01-01

    Interstitial lung disease (ILD) is one of the major causes of morbidity and mortality of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Accompanying the increased number of reports on the development or exacerbation of ILD in RA patients following therapy with biological disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs), RA-associated ILD (RA-ILD) has aroused renewed interest. Although such cases have been reported mainly in association with the use of tumor necrosis factor inhibitors, the use of other biological DMARDs has also become a matter of concern. Nevertheless, it is difficult to establish a causative relationship between the use of biological DMARDs and either the development or exacerbation of ILD. Such pulmonary complications may occur in the natural course of RA regardless of the use of biological DMARDs. Since rheumatologists currently aim to achieve remission in RA patients, the administration of biological DMARDs is increasing, even for those with RA-ILD. However, there are no reliable, evidence-based guidelines for deciding whether biological DMARDs can be safely introduced and continued in RA-ILD patients. A standardized staging system for pulmonary conditions of RA-ILD patients is needed when making therapeutic decisions at baseline and monitoring during biological DMARD therapy. Based on the available information regarding the safety of biological DMARDs and the predictive factors for a worse prognosis, this review discusses candidate parameters for risk evaluation of ILD in RA patients who are scheduled to receive biological antirheumatic therapy.

  2. Correlation of biological aggressiveness assessed by {sup 11}C-methionine PET and hypoxic burden assessed by {sup 18}F-fluoromisonidazole PET in newly diagnosed glioblastoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kawai, Nobuyuki; Miyake, Keisuke; Okada, Masaki; Tamiya, Takashi [Kagawa University, Department of Neurological Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Kagawa (Japan); Maeda, Yukito; Yamamoto, Yuka; Nishiyama, Yoshihiro [Kagawa University, Department of Radiology, Faculty of Medicine, Kagawa (Japan); Kudomi, Nobuyuki [Kagawa University, Department of Medical Physics, Faculty of Medicine, Kagawa (Japan)

    2011-03-15

    Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is characterized by tissue hypoxia associated with resistance to radiotherapy and chemotherapy. To clarify the biological link between hypoxia and tumour-induced neovascularization and tumour aggressiveness, we analysed detailed volumetric and spatial information of viable hypoxic tissue assessed by {sup 18}F-fluoromisonidazole (FMISO) PET relative to neovascularization in Gd-enhanced MRI and tumour aggressiveness by L-methyl-{sup 11}C-methionine (MET) PET in newly diagnosed GBMs. Ten patients with newly diagnosed GBMs were investigated with FMISO PET, MET PET and Gd-enhanced MRI before surgery. Tumour volumes were calculated by performing a three-dimensional threshold-based volume of interest (VOI) analysis for metabolically active volume on MET PET (MET uptake indices of {>=}1.3 and {>=}1.5) and Gd-enhanced volume on MRI. FMISO PET was scaled to the blood FMISO activity to create tumour to blood (T/B) images. The hypoxic volume (HV) was defined as the region with T/B greater than 1.2. PET and MR images of each patient were coregistered to analyse the spatial location of viable hypoxic tissue relative to neovascularization and active tumour extension. Metabolically active tumour volumes defined using MET uptake indices of {>=}1.3 and {>=}1.5 and the volumes of Gd enhancement showed a strong correlation (r = 0.86, p < 0.01 for an index of {>=}1.3 and r = 0.77, p < 0.05 for an index of {>=}1.5). The HVs were also excellently correlated with the volumes of Gd enhancement (r = 0.94, p < 0.01). The metabolically active tumour volumes as defined by a MET uptake index of {>=}1.3 and the HVs exhibited a strong correlation (r = 0.87, p < 0.01). On superimposed images, the metabolically active area on MET PET defined by a MET uptake index of {>=}1.3 was usually larger than the area of the Gd enhancement and about 20-30% of the MET area extended outside the area of the enhancement. On the other hand, the surface area of viable hypoxic tissue

  3. Field Application of the Micro Biological Survey Method for a Simple and Effective Assessment of the Microbiological Quality of Water Sources in Developing Countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arienzo, Alyexandra; Sobze, Martin Sanou; Wadoum, Raoul Emeric Guetiya; Losito, Francesca; Colizzi, Vittorio; Antonini, Giovanni

    2015-08-25

    According to the World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines, "safe drinking-water must not represent any significant risk to health over a lifetime of consumption, including different sensitivities that may occur between life stages". Traditional methods of water analysis are usually complex, time consuming and require an appropriately equipped laboratory, specialized personnel and expensive instrumentation. The aim of this work was to apply an alternative method, the Micro Biological Survey (MBS), to analyse for contaminants in drinking water. Preliminary experiments were carried out to demonstrate the linearity and accuracy of the MBS method and to verify the possibility of using the evaluation of total coliforms in 1 mL of water as a sufficient parameter to roughly though accurately determine water microbiological quality. The MBS method was then tested "on field" to assess the microbiological quality of water sources in the city of Douala (Cameroon, Central Africa). Analyses were performed on both dug and drilled wells in different periods of the year. Results confirm that the MBS method appears to be a valid and accurate method to evaluate the microbiological quality of many water sources and it can be of valuable aid in developing countries.

  4. Biological and Tribological Assessment of Poly(Ethylene Oxide Terephthalate)/Poly(Butylene Terephthalate), Polycaprolactone, and Poly (L\\DL) Lactic Acid Plotted Scaffolds for Skeletal Tissue Regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendrikson, Wilhelmus J; Zeng, Xiangqiong; Rouwkema, Jeroen; van Blitterswijk, Clemens A; van der Heide, Emile; Moroni, Lorenzo

    2016-01-21

    Additive manufactured scaffolds are fabricated from three commonly used biomaterials, polycaprolactone (PCL), poly (L\\DL) lactic acid (P(L\\DL)LA), and poly(ethylene oxide terephthalate)/poly(butylene terephthalate) (PEOT/PBT). Scaffolds are compared biologically and tribologically. Cell-seeded PEOT/PBT scaffolds cultured in osteogenic and chondrogenic differentiation media show statistical significantly higher alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity/DNA and glycosaminoglycans (GAG)/DNA ratios, followed by PCL and P(L\\DL)LA scaffolds, respectively. The tribological performance is assessed by determining the friction coefficients of the scaffolds at different loads and sliding velocities. With increasing load or decreasing sliding velocity, the friction coefficient value decreases. PEOT/PBT show to have the lowest friction coefficient value, followed by PCL and P(L\\DL)LA. The influence of the scaffold architecture is further determined with PEOT/PBT. Reducing of the fiber spacing results in a lower friction coefficient value. The best and the worst performing scaffold architecture are chosen to investigate the effect of cell culture on the friction coefficient. Matrix deposition is low in the cell-seeded scaffolds and the effect is, therefore, undetermined. Taken together, our studies show that PEOT/PBT scaffolds support better skeletal differentiation of seeded stromal cells and lower friction coefficient compared to PCL and P(L/DL)A scaffolds.

  5. Quantum Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Sergi

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available A critical assessment of the recent developmentsof molecular biology is presented.The thesis that they do not lead to a conceptualunderstanding of life and biological systems is defended.Maturana and Varela's concept of autopoiesis is briefly sketchedand its logical circularity avoided by postulatingthe existence of underlying living processes,entailing amplification from the microscopic to the macroscopic scale,with increasing complexity in the passage from one scale to the other.Following such a line of thought, the currently accepted model of condensed matter, which is based on electrostatics and short-ranged forces,is criticized. It is suggested that the correct interpretationof quantum dispersion forces (van der Waals, hydrogen bonding, and so onas quantum coherence effects hints at the necessity of includinglong-ranged forces (or mechanisms for them incondensed matter theories of biological processes.Some quantum effects in biology are reviewedand quantum mechanics is acknowledged as conceptually important to biology since withoutit most (if not all of the biological structuresand signalling processes would not even exist. Moreover, it is suggested that long-rangequantum coherent dynamics, including electron polarization,may be invoked to explain signal amplificationprocess in biological systems in general.

  6. Biological assessment (antiviral and antioxidant and acute toxicity of essential oils from Drimys angustifolia and D. brasiliensis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madson Ralide Fonseca Gomes

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The genus Drimys presents the widest geographical distribution of the Winteraceae family, which comprises seven genera and about 120 species. In Brazil, the genus is found from Bahia to Rio Grande do Sul and occur in two species, Drimys angustifolia Miers, and D. brasiliensis Miers, Winteraceae, popularly known as "casca-de-anta", characterized by the presence of flavonoids and essential oils. It is used in folk medicine as an antiscorbutic, stimulant, antispasmodic, anti-diarrheal, antipyretic, antibacterial, and against asthma and bronchitis, besides having insecticidal properties. In addition to the known biological activities, it is very important to explore new applications in the treatment of physiological disorders or diseases caused by parasites. Based on this information, in this study we propose to evaluate volatile oils of the species D. brasiliensis and D. angustifolia, as an antioxidant, using the model of the DPPH radical as an antiviral against human herpes virus type 1 (HSV-1 and acute toxicity in vivo. The two species were not able to reduce the DPPH radical and showed interesting antiviral activity, significantly reducing the virus titers in vitro assays. Regarding the in vivo toxicity in female Wistar rats, treatment with the two species showed interesting signs in animals such as salivation, ptosis, tremor, decreased motor activity. In addition the oils of D. brasiliensis to other signs, some animals showed increased urination and diarrhea.

  7. Biological assessment (antiviral and antioxidant and acute toxicity of essential oils from Drimys angustifolia and D. brasiliensis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madson Ralide Fonseca Gomes

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The genus Drimys presents the widest geographical distribution of the Winteraceae family, which comprises seven genera and about 120 species. In Brazil, the genus is found from Bahia to Rio Grande do Sul and occur in two species, Drimys angustifolia Miers, and D. brasiliensis Miers, Winteraceae, popularly known as "casca-de-anta", characterized by the presence of flavonoids and essential oils. It is used in folk medicine as an antiscorbutic, stimulant, antispasmodic, anti-diarrheal, antipyretic, antibacterial, and against asthma and bronchitis, besides having insecticidal properties. In addition to the known biological activities, it is very important to explore new applications in the treatment of physiological disorders or diseases caused by parasites. Based on this information, in this study we propose to evaluate volatile oils of the species D. brasiliensis and D. angustifolia, as an antioxidant, using the model of the DPPH radical as an antiviral against human herpes virus type 1 (HSV-1 and acute toxicity in vivo. The two species were not able to reduce the DPPH radical and showed interesting antiviral activity, significantly reducing the virus titers in vitro assays. Regarding the in vivo toxicity in female Wistar rats, treatment with the two species showed interesting signs in animals such as salivation, ptosis, tremor, decreased motor activity. In addition the oils of D. brasiliensis to other signs, some animals showed increased urination and diarrhea.

  8. Using aquatic macroinvertebrate species traits to build test batteries for sediment toxicity assessment: accounting for the diversity of potential biological responses to toxicants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ducrot, Virginie; Usseglio-Polatera, Philippe; Péry, T Alexandre R R; Mouthon, Jacques; Lafont, Michel; Roger, Marie-Claude; Garric, Jeanne; Férard, Jean-François

    2005-09-01

    An original species-selection method for the building of test batteries is presented. This method is based on the statistical analysis of the biological and ecological trait patterns of species. It has been applied to build a macroinvertebrate test battery for the assessment of sediment toxicity, which efficiently describes the diversity of benthic macroinvertebrate biological responses to toxicants in a large European lowland river. First, 109 potential representatives of benthic communities of European lowland rivers were selected from a list of 479 taxa, considering 11 biological traits accounting for the main routes of exposure to a sediment-bound toxicant and eight ecological traits providing an adequate description of habitat characteristics used by the taxa. Second, their biological and ecological trait patterns were compared using coinertia analysis. This comparison allowed the clustering of taxa into groups of organisms that exhibited similar life-history characteristics, physiological and behavioral features, and similar habitat use. Groups exhibited various sizes (7-35 taxa), taxonomic compositions, and biological and ecological features. Main differences among group characteristics concerned morphology, substrate preferendum and habitat utilization, nutritional features, maximal size, and life-history strategy. Third, the best representatives of the mean biological and ecological characteristics of each group were included in the test battery. The final selection was composed of Chironomus riparius (Insecta: Diptera), Branchiura sowerbyi (Oligochaeta: Tubificidae), Lumbriculus variegatus (Oligochaeta: Lumbriculidae), Valvata piscinalis (Gastropoda: Valvatidae), and Sericostoma personatum (Trichoptera: Sericostomatidae). This approach permitted the biological and ecological variety of the battery to be maximized. Because biological and ecological traits of taxa determine species sensitivity, such maximization should permit the battery to better account

  9. 合成生物学生物安全风险评价与管理%Assessment and management of biosafety in synthetic biology

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    关正君; 裴蕾; 马库斯·施密特; 魏伟

    2012-01-01

    While having developed into one of the most dynamic fields of the life sciences, synthetic biology may pose potential risks to the environment and human health. Based on current national and international risk assessment methods and current regulation of synthetic biology, we reviewed risk assessment in relation to synthetic biology's research subfields (such as DNA-based biocircuits, minimal genome, protocells and chemical synthetic biology), its relation with biosafety engineering, its effect on ELSI (Ethics, Legal and Social Implications) and recent biosecurity challenges, such as biopunk (or biohackery), garage biology, do-it-yourself biology and bioterrorism. Additionally, we investigated existing strategies for management of synthetic biology research, focusing on self-regulatory or technology-focused methods and using the 5P (the principal investigator, the project, the premises, the provider of genetic material and its purchaser) strategy focusing in five different policy intervention points. Furthermore, we reviewed the current research and development of synthetic biology and its current biosafety regulations in China. Finally, we recommended management strategies to guide future research in synthetic biology with necessary amendments, including the establishment of regulations with a core of safety assessment, synthetic biology-specific good laboratory practice guidelines, and arguments for the reinforcement of internal regulation at the institution level and more active public outreach efforts for biosafety.%合成生物学(synthetic biology)已迅速发展为生命科学最具发展潜力的分支学科之一,但它同时也会给生态环境和人类健康带来潜在的风险.结合国内外合成生物学发展现状,本文综述了基因回路(DNA-based biocircuits)、最小基因组(minimal genome)、原型细胞(protocells)、化学合成生物学(chemical synthetic biology)等涉及的风险评价、合成生

  10. The effectiveness of spent coffee grounds and its biochar on the amelioration of heavy metals-contaminated water and soil using chemical and biological assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Min-Suk; Min, Hyun-Gi; Koo, Namin; Park, Jeongsik; Lee, Sang-Hwan; Bak, Gwan-In; Kim, Jeong-Gyu

    2014-12-15

    Spent coffee grounds (SCG) and charred spent coffee grounds (SCG-char) have been widely used to adsorb or to amend heavy metals that contaminate water or soil and their success is usually assessed by chemical analysis. In this work, the effects of SCG and SCG-char on metal-contaminated water and soil were evaluated using chemical and biological assessments; a phytotoxicity test using bok choy (Brassica campestris L. ssp. chinensis Jusl.) was conducted for the biological assessment. When SCG and SCG-char were applied to acid mine drainage, the heavy metal concentrations were decreased and the pH was increased. However, for SCG, the phytotoxicity increased because a massive amount of dissolved organic carbon was released from SCG. In contrast, SCG-char did not exhibit this phenomenon because any easily released organic matter was removed during pyrolysis. While the bioavailable heavy metal content decreased in soils treated with SCG or SCG-char, the phytotoxicity only rose after SCG treatment. According to our statistical methodology, bioavailable Pb, Cu and As, as well as the electrical conductivity representing an increase in organic content, affected the phytotoxicity of soil. Therefore, applying SCG during environment remediation requires careful biological assessments and evaluations of the efficiency of this remediation technology.

  11. Significant communities in large sparse networks

    CERN Document Server

    Mirshahvalad, Atieh; Derlen, Mattias; Rosvall, Martin

    2011-01-01

    Researchers use community-detection algorithms to reveal large-scale organization in biological and social networks, but community detection is useful only if the communities are significant and not a result of noisy data. To assess the statistical significance of the network communities, or the robustness of the detected structure, one approach is to perturb the network structure by removing links and measure how much the communities change. However, perturbing sparse networks is challenging because they are inherently sensitive; they shatter easily if links are removed. Here we propose a simple method to perturb sparse networks and assess the significance of their communities. We generate resampled networks by adding extra links based on local information, then we aggregate the information from multiple resampled networks to find a coarse-grained description of significant clusters. In addition to testing our method on benchmark networks, we use our method on the sparse network of the European Court of Just...

  12. Current evidence base of FDG-PET/CT imaging in the clinical management of malignant pleural mesothelioma: emerging significance of image segmentation and global disease assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basu, Sandip; Saboury, Babak; Torigian, Drew A; Alavi, Abass

    2011-10-01

    Increasingly, integrated positron emission tomography-computed tomography (PET/CT) imaging is playing a crucial role in the assessment of patients with known or suspected malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM). Based on the data reported in the literature, this combined modality is likely to become the instrument of choice for examining patients of MPM. The research on this subject has focused on the following five domains: (1) differentiation of MPM from other benign pleural diseases, (2) preoperative staging for the selection of appropriate candidates for surgery, (3) evaluation for therapy response and post-treatment surveillance for recurrence, (4) prognostication based upon the intensity of 2-deoxy-2-[(18)F]fluoro-D-glucose (FDG) uptake, and (5) planning of radiotherapy. These represent the bases for critical decision making in the management of mesothelioma, and FDG-PET/CT offers potential advantages over conventional CT imaging and thus can play a pivotal role in this regard. Optimal characterization of this potentially fatal disease with a high negative predictive value for MPM, superior capability for cancer staging initially and at the later course of disease, and ability for measuring therapeutic response and the precise determination of the target volume for radiotherapy planning represent distinct advantages of this promising molecular imaging tool. In this communication, we have explored the promising role of integrated FDG-PET/CT in the overall management of this serious malignancy. From the available data, the major role of PET-CT at present appears to be in the preoperative disease staging, response to treatment assessment, and post-treatment disease surveillance of MPM. In all these three areas, PET-CT convincingly shows better results than conventional anatomical imaging alone and thereby can aid in exploring novel therapeutic approaches. Disease prognosis and radiotherapy planning are evolving areas where this modality has demonstrated significant

  13. Assessment of biological effects of environmental pollution in Mersin Bay (Turkey, northeastern Mediterranean Sea) using Mullus barbatus and Liza ramada as target organisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yılmaz, Doruk; Kalay, Mustafa; Dönmez, Erdem; Yılmaz, Nejat

    2016-01-01

    The increasing emphasis on the assessment and monitoring of marine ecosystems has revealed the need to use appropriate biological indicators for these areas. Enzyme activities and histopathology are increasingly being used as indicators of environmental stress since they provide a definite biological end-point of pollutant exposure. As part of an ecotoxicological assessment of Mersin Bay, EROD enzyme activity and histopathological response in selected organs and tissues of two species of fish, Mullus barbatus (red mullet) and Liza ramada (thinlip grey mullet), captured from area were examined. Pollutant (Organochlorines (OC), alkylphenols (APs) and BPA) levels and biomarker responses in tissue samples were evaluated together for their potential to alter the metabolism and cellular aspects in liver and gonad. Elevated induction of EROD activity and histopathological alterations in contaminated samples from Mersin Bay was observed compared to reference site indicating the exposure to potential pollutants.

  14. Assessment of Trichogramma japonicum and T. chilonis as Potential Biological Control Agents of Yellow Stem Borer in Rice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Rui; Babendreier, Dirk; Zhang, Feng; Kang, Min; Song, Kai; Hou, Mao-Lin

    2017-02-08

    Two species of Trichogramma wasps were assessed for their effectiveness against yellow stem borer Scirpophaga incertulas. A laboratory cage test with T. japonicum and T. chilonis showed that both species parasitized yellow stem borer egg masses at 60.0% ± 9.13% and 40.7% ± 7.11%, respectively, with egg parasitism rates of 15.8% ± 22.2% for T. japonicum and 2.8% ± 5.0% for T. chilonis. Once the host eggs were parasitized, emergence rates were high for both species (95.7% ± 0.12% for T. japonicum and 100% for T. chilonis). In paddy field trials, the two Trichogramma species were released at three densities (50,000/ha, 100,000/ha and 200,000/ha) in Southwestern China. Egg mass parasitism was 9% ± 7.7% for T. japonicum and 15% ± 14.1% for T. chilonis, and again only a relatively small fraction of eggs was successfully parasitized. No clear conclusion could be drawn on the most efficient release rate as no significant differences were found among the three release rates. A comparison of field-collected T. japonicum with T. japonicum and T. chilonis mass reared on Corcyra cephalonica showed significantly larger body size and ovipositor length in field-collected wasps, suggesting potentially higher effectiveness on yellow stem borer eggs after at least one generation on the target host. Factors contributing to the low field parasitism rates are discussed.

  15. Assessment of Trichogramma japonicum and T. chilonis as Potential Biological Control Agents of Yellow Stem Borer in Rice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rui Tang

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Two species of Trichogramma wasps were assessed for their effectiveness against yellow stem borer Scirpophaga incertulas. A laboratory cage test with T. japonicum and T. chilonis showed that both species parasitized yellow stem borer egg masses at 60.0% ± 9.13% and 40.7% ± 7.11%, respectively, with egg parasitism rates of 15.8% ± 22.2% for T. japonicum and 2.8% ± 5.0% for T. chilonis. Once the host eggs were parasitized, emergence rates were high for both species (95.7% ± 0.12% for T. japonicum and 100% for T. chilonis. In paddy field trials, the two Trichogramma species were released at three densities (50,000/ha, 100,000/ha and 200,000/ha in Southwestern China. Egg mass parasitism was 9% ± 7.7% for T. japonicum and 15% ± 14.1% for T. chilonis, and again only a relatively small fraction of eggs was successfully parasitized. No clear conclusion could be drawn on the most efficient release rate as no significant differences were found among the three release rates. A comparison of field-collected T. japonicum with T. japonicum and T. chilonis mass reared on Corcyra cephalonica showed significantly larger body size and ovipositor length in field-collected wasps, suggesting potentially higher effectiveness on yellow stem borer eggs after at least one generation on the target host. Factors contributing to the low field parasitism rates are discussed.

  16. Assessment of the biological health of streams on the Patuxent Research Refuge within Anne Arundel County, Maryland.

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This report discusses the biological conditions of streams located within the North Track of the Patuxent Research Refuge (Refuge). Over the last 7 years, Anne...

  17. Gold nanoparticles prepared by laser ablation in aqueous biocompatible solutions: assessment of safety and biological identity for nanomedicine applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Correard F

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Florian Correard,1,2 Ksenia Maximova,3 Marie-Anne Estève,1,2 Claude Villard,1 Myriam Roy,4 Ahmed Al-Kattan,3 Marc Sentis,3 Marc Gingras,4 Andrei V Kabashin,3 Diane Braguer1,2 1Aix Marseille Université, INSERM, CR02 UMR_S911, Marseille, France; 2APHM, Hôpital Timone, Marseille, France; 3Aix Marseille Université, CNRS, LP3 UMR 7341, Marseille, France; 4Aix Marseille Université, CNRS, CINAM, UMR 7325 Marseille, France Abstract: Due to excellent biocompatibility, chemical stability, and promising optical properties, gold nanoparticles (Au-NPs are the focus of research and applications in nanomedicine. Au-NPs prepared by laser ablation in aqueous biocompatible solutions present an essentially novel object that is unique in avoiding any residual toxic contaminant. This paper is conceived as the next step in development of laser-ablated Au-NPs for future in vivo applications. The aim of the study was to assess the safety, uptake, and biological behavior of laser-synthesized Au-NPs prepared in water or polymer solutions in human cell lines. Our results showed that laser ablation allows the obtaining of stable and monodisperse Au-NPs in water, polyethylene glycol, and dextran solutions. The three types of Au-NPs were internalized in human cell lines, as shown by transmission electron microscopy. Biocompatibility and safety of Au-NPs were demonstrated by analyzing cell survival and cell morphology. Furthermore, incubation of the three Au-NPs in serum-containing culture medium modified their physicochemical characteristics, such as the size and the charge. The composition of the protein corona adsorbed on Au-NPs was investigated by mass spectrometry. Regarding composition of complement C3 proteins and apolipoproteins, Au-NPs prepared in dextran solution appeared as a promising drug carrier. Altogether, our results revealed the safety of laser-ablated Au-NPs in human cell lines and support their use for theranostic applications. Keywords: protein

  18. Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact: Interim Measures for the Mixed Waste Management Facility Groundwater at the Burial Ground Complex at the Savannah River Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    N/A

    1999-12-08

    release of tritium from the southwest plume area to Fourmile Branch between 25 to 35 percent. If this proposed action is undertaken and its effectiveness is demonstrated, it may become a component of the final action in the CAP. This document was prepared in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, as amended; the requirements of the Council on Environmental Quality Regulations for Implementing NEPA (40 CFR 1500-1508); and the DOE Regulations for Implementing NEPA (10 CFR 1021). NEPA requires the assessment of environmental consequences of Federal actions that may affect the quality of the human environment. Based on the potential for impacts described herein, DOE will either publish a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) or prepare an environmental impact statement (EM).

  19. The significant scale up and success of Transmission Assessment Surveys 'TAS' for endgame surveillance of lymphatic filariasis in Bangladesh: One step closer to the elimination goal of 2020

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karim, Mohammad J.; Azad, Motasim B.; Mahmood, A. S. M. Sultan; Khair, Abul; Rahman, Muhammad Mujibur; Hafiz, Israt; Ramaiah, K. D.; Mackenzie, Charles D.; Mableson, Hayley E.

    2017-01-01

    Background Bangladesh had one of the highest burdens of lymphatic filariasis (LF) at the start of the Global Programme to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis (GPELF) with an estimated 70 million people at risk of infection across 34 districts. In total 19 districts required mass drug administration (MDA) to interrupt transmission, and 15 districts were considered low endemic. Since 2001, the National LF Programme has implemented MDA, reduced prevalence, and been able to scale up the WHO standard Transmission Assessment Survey (TAS) across all endemic districts as part of its endgame surveillance strategy. This paper presents TAS results, highlighting the momentous geographical reduction in risk of LF and its contribution to the global elimination target of 2020. Methodology/Principal findings The TAS assessed primary school children for the presence of LF antigenaemia in each district (known as an evaluation unit—EU), using a defined critical cut-off threshold (or ‘pass’) that indicates interruption of transmission. Since 2011, a total of 59 TAS have been conducted in 26 EUs across the 19 endemic MDA districts (99,148 students tested from 1,801 schools), and 22 TAS in the 15 low endemic non-MDA districts (36,932 students tested from 663 schools). All endemic MDA districts passed TAS, except in Rangpur which required two further rounds of MDA. In total 112 students (male n = 59; female n = 53), predominately from the northern region of the country were found to be antigenaemia positive, indicating a recent or current infection. However, the distribution was geographically sparse, with only two small focal areas showing potential evidence of persistent transmission. Conclusions/Significance This is the largest scale up of TAS surveillance activities reported in any of the 73 LF endemic countries in the world. Bangladesh is now considered to have very low or no risk of LF infection after 15 years of programmatic activities, and is on track to meet elimination targets

  20. Three forms of assessment of prior knowledge, and improved performance following an enrichment programme, of English second language biology students within the context of a marine theme

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feltham, Nicola F.; Downs, Colleen T.

    2002-02-01

    The Science Foundation Programme (SFP) was launched in 1991 at the University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa in an attempt to equip a selected number of matriculants from historically disadvantaged schools with the skills, resources and self-confidence needed to embark on their tertiary studies. Previous research within the SFP biology component suggests that a major contributor to poor achievement and low retention rates among English second language (ESL) students in the Life Sciences is the inadequate background knowledge in natural history. In this study, SFP student background knowledge was assessed along a continuum of language dependency using a set of three probes. Improved student performance in each of the respective assessments examined the extent to which a sound natural history background facilitated meaningful learning relative to ESL proficiency. Student profiles and attitudes to biology were also examined. Results indicated that students did not perceive language to be a problem in biology. However, analysis of the student performance in the assessment probes indicated that, although the marine course provided the students with the background knowledge that they were initially lacking, they continued to perform better in the drawing and MCQ tools in the post-tests, suggesting that it is their inability to express themselves in the written form that hampers their development. These results have implications for curriculum development within the constructivist framework of the SFP.

  1. Finding of No Significant Impact & Tiered Environmental Assessment: Public Law 84-99 Rehabilitation Program Levee Unit 624-627 - Mosquito Creek Pottawattamie County, Iowa

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-10-01

    unspecified non-point sources, wildlife, and recreational boating and marinas . For ocean and near coastal waters, 16 causes of impairment were...ocean and near coastal waters were "unknown," atmospheric deposition, recreational boating and marinas , municipal discharges/sewage, unspecified non...heterogeneity, and biodiversity: a failure of theory or practice? Freshwater Biology 55:205- 222. Paul, M.J. and J.L. Meyer. 2001. Streams in the urban

  2. Systems Toxicology Assessment of the Biological Impact of a Candidate Modified Risk Tobacco Product on Human Organotypic Oral Epithelial Cultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zanetti, Filippo; Sewer, Alain; Mathis, Carole; Iskandar, Anita R; Kostadinova, Radina; Schlage, Walter K; Leroy, Patrice; Majeed, Shoaib; Guedj, Emmanuel; Trivedi, Keyur; Martin, Florian; Elamin, Ashraf; Merg, Céline; Ivanov, Nikolai V; Frentzel, Stefan; Peitsch, Manuel C; Hoeng, Julia

    2016-08-15

    Cigarette smoke (CS) has been reported to increase predisposition to oral cancer and is also recognized as a risk factor for many conditions including periodontal diseases, gingivitis, and other benign mucosal disorders. Smoking cessation remains the most effective approach for minimizing the risk of smoking-related diseases. However, reduction of harmful constituents by heating rather than combusting tobacco, without modifying the amount of nicotine, is a promising new paradigm in harm reduction. In this study, we compared effects of exposure to aerosol derived from a candidate modified risk tobacco product, the tobacco heating system (THS) 2.2, with those of CS generated from the 3R4F reference cigarette. Human organotypic oral epithelial tissue cultures (EpiOral, MatTek Corporation) were exposed for 28 min to 3R4F CS or THS2.2 aerosol, both diluted with air to comparable nicotine concentrations (0.32 or 0.51 mg nicotine/L aerosol/CS for 3R4F and 0.31 or 0.46 mg/L for THS2.2). We also tested one higher concentration (1.09 mg/L) of THS2.2. A systems toxicology approach was employed combining cellular assays (i.e., cytotoxicity and cytochrome P450 activity assays), comprehensive molecular investigations of the buccal epithelial transcriptome (mRNA and miRNA) by means of computational network biology, measurements of secreted proinflammatory markers, and histopathological analysis. We observed that the impact of 3R4F CS was greater than THS2.2 aerosol in terms of cytotoxicity, morphological tissue alterations, and secretion of inflammatory mediators. Analysis of the transcriptomic changes in the exposed oral cultures revealed significant perturbations in various network models such as apoptosis, necroptosis, senescence, xenobiotic metabolism, oxidative stress, and nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2 (NFE2L2) signaling. The stress responses following THS2.2 aerosol exposure were markedly decreased, and the exposed cultures recovered more completely compared

  3. Biological water-quality assessment of selected streams in the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District Planning Area of Wisconsin, 2007

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scudder Eikenberry, Barbara C.; Bell, Amanda H.; Sullivan, Daniel J.; Lutz, Michelle A.; Alvarez, David A.

    2010-01-01

    Changes in the water quality of stream ecosystems in an urban area may manifest in conspicuous ways, such as in murky or smelly streamwater, or in less conspicuous ways, such as fewer native or pollution-sensitive organisms. In 2004, and again in 2007, the U.S. Geological Survey sampled stream organisms—algae, invertebrates, and fish—in 14 Milwaukee area streams to assess water quality as part of the ongoing Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District (MMSD) Corridor Study. In addition, passive-sampling devices (SPMDs, “semipermeable membrane devices”) were deployed at a subset of sites in order to evaluate the potential exposure of stream organisms to certain toxic chemicals. Results of the 2007 sampling effort are the focus of this report. Results of sampling from 2007 are compared with results from 2004. The water quality of sampled streams was assessed by evaluating biological-assemblage data, metrics computed from assemblage data, and an aggregate bioassessment ranking method that combined data for algae, invertebrates, and fish. These data contain information about the abundance (number) of different species in each group of stream organisms and the balance between species that can or cannot tolerate polluted or disturbed conditions. In 2007, the highest numbers of algal, invertebrate, and fish species were found at the Milwaukee River at Milwaukee, the largest sampled site. Algal results indicated water quality concerns at 10 of the 14 sampled sites due to the occurrence of nuisance algae or low percentages of pollution-sensitive algae. When compared to 2004, total algal biovolume was higher in 2007 at 12 of 14 sites, due mostly to more nuisance green algae from unknown causes. Results of several metrics, including the Hilsenhoff Biotic Index (HBI-10), suggest that invertebrate assemblages in the Little Menomonee River, Underwood Creek, and Honey Creek were poorer quality in 2007 compared to 2004. Six sites received “very poor” quality ratings for

  4. Significance and assessments of impaired microcirculation in chronic wounds%慢性创面微循环障碍的作用及评估

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Rajgopal Mani; 缪明远

    2012-01-01

    慢性创面是指经过正确诊断和规范治疗8周后,伤口面积缩小不足50%的创面疾病(译者注:此为欧洲标准).慢性创面可发生在身体任何部位,其中80%发生在下肢.尽管多种疾病可导致下肢创面的发生,但静脉压力增高、糖尿病和局部组织受压仍然是皮肤损害和愈合延迟的主要原因.所谓慢性创面包括延迟愈合的外科伤口(如伤口裂开导致的创面愈合延迟),坏疽性脓皮病,感染所致的创面(如Buruli溃疡),外伤所致的创面,瘢痕溃疡,钙过敏、大疱性表皮松解症和服用羟基脲类药物导致的非典型性创面,放射性溃疡等.不同的慢性创面往往有不同的病理生理过程,但共同的结局是创面难愈,表现为创面愈合缓慢、愈合后复发或两者兼而有之.鉴于血管相关病变是慢性创面发生的诱因,本文将探讨微循环因素在慢性创面发生中的重要性及评估方法.%Chronic wounds pose a clinical challenge.Such wounds may present all over the body although the majority appear on the lower extremities.In the main,wounds are caused by hypertension(venous or arterial),diabetes,although infection, trauma, and animal bites can result in non-healing wounds.It is vital to have a reliable diagnosis in order to plan treatment.Despite advances in diagnostics and the development of standard care packages,chronic wounds present a growing burden to all societies.One of the problems faced is the poor understanding of the pathophysiology of wounds; it is commonly accepted that microcirculation is impaired in lower extremity chronic wounds.This paper is focused on the significance and assessment of impaired microcirculation.

  5. Prognostic Significance of Tumor Response as Assessed by Sequential {sup 18}F-Fluorodeoxyglucose-Positron Emission Tomography/Computed Tomography During Concurrent Chemoradiation Therapy for Cervical Cancer

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oh, Dongryul [Department of Radiation Oncology, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Lee, Jeong Eun [Department of Radiation Oncology, Kyungpook National University School of Medicine, Daegu (Korea, Republic of); Huh, Seung Jae, E-mail: sj5201.huh@samsung.com [Department of Radiation Oncology, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Park, Won [Department of Radiation Oncology, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Nam, Heerim [Department of Radiation Oncology, Kangbuk Samsung Hospital, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Choi, Joon Young; Kim, Byung-Tae [Department of Nuclear Medicine, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    2013-11-01

    Purpose: To investigate the prognostic role of metabolic response by the use of serial sets of positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) in patients with cervical cancer who were treated with concurrent chemoradiation therapy (CCRT). Methods and Materials: A total of 60 patients who were treated with CCRT between February 2009 and December 2010 were analyzed. Three sequential PET/CT images were acquired for each patient: pre-CCRT, during-CCRT at 4 weeks of CCRT, and 1 month post-CCRT PET/CT. Metabolic responses were assessed qualitatively. The percentage changes in the maximum values of standardized uptake value (ΔSUV{sub max}%) from the PET/CT images acquired pre-CCRT and during-CCRT were calculated. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis was performed to evaluate whether ΔSUV{sub max}% could predict complete response (CR) on the post-CCRT PET/CT and to identify the best cutoff value. Prognostic factors of progression-free survival (PFS) were analyzed. Results: During-CCRT PET/CT showed that 8 patients (13%) had CR, and the other 52 patients (87%) had partial response (PR). On the post-CCRT PET/CT, 43 patients (73%) had CR, 12 patients (20%) had PR, and 4 patients (7%) had progressive disease. The average SUV{sub max} in primary tumors was 16.3 (range, 6.4-53.0) on the pre-CCRT PET/CT images and 5.3 (range, 0-19.4) on the during-CCRT PET/CT images. According to ROC curve analysis, ΔSUV{sub max}% could predict CR response on post-CCRT PET/CT (P<.001, cutoff value of 59.7%). In all patients, the PFS rate was 71.9% at 2 years. Multivariate analysis showed that ΔSUV{sub max}% ≥60% (P=.045) and CR response on the post-CCRT PET/CT (P=.012) were statistically significant predictors of PFS. Conclusion: Metabolic responses on the during-CCRT images at 4 weeks of treatment and 1-month post-CCRT PET/CT images may predict treatment outcomes in patients with cervical cancer. ΔSUV{sub max}% ≥60% at 4 weeks of CCRT may predict CR response

  6. Indicator-based assessment of marine biological diversity – lessons from 10 case studies across the European Seas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Uusitalo

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The Marine Strategy Framework Directive requires the environmental status of European marine waters to be assessed using biodiversity as one out of 11 descriptors, but the complexity of marine biodiversity and its large span across latitudinal and salinity gradients have been a challenge to the scientific community aiming to produce approaches for integrating information from a broad range of indicators. The Nested Environmental status Assessment Tool (NEAT, developed for the integrated assessment of the status of marine waters, was applied to ten marine ecosystems to test its applicability and compare biodiversity assessments across the four European regional seas. We evaluate the assessment results as well as the assessment designs of the ten cases, and how the assessment design, particularly the choices made regarding the area and indicator selection, affected the results. The results show that only 2 out of the 10 case study areas show more than 50 % probability of being in good status in respect of biodiversity. No strong pattern among the ecosystem components across the case study areas could be detected, but marine mammals, birds, and benthic vegetation indicators tended to indicate poor status while zooplankton indicators indicated good status when included into the assessment. The analysis shows that the assessment design, including the selection of indicators, their target values, geographical resolution and habitats to be assessed, has potentially a high impact on the result, and the assessment structure needs to be understood in order to make an informed assessment. Moreover, recommendations are provided for the best practice of using NEAT for marine status assessments.

  7. A grading matrix assessment approach to align student performance to Threshold Learning Outcomes (TLOs in a large first year biology class

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lesley Lluka

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available In our large first year biology course, we aim to provide students with clear links between the course delivery framework and assessment. In the first semester of offering in 2008, we determined grades using the traditional weighted average of marks for the assessment tasks. However, of the 99% of students who passed with an aggregate of at least 50%, the lowest performing student obtained only 21% for the examination. Since Semester 2 2008, we have graded the course using a grading matrix approach with specified standards for all the individual assessment components. Analysis of results from this approach showed that 85-89% of students obtained a passing grade, for which a minimum score of 45% for the examination was required. The grading matrix approach provides a measure of each student’s higher order learning of concepts and skills that can be mapped to threshold learning outcomes for the students’ programs of study.

  8. A systematic approach for the assessment of bacterial growth-controlling factors linked to biological stability of drinking water in distribution systems

    KAUST Repository

    Prest, E. I.

    2016-01-06

    A systematic approach is presented for the assessment of (i) bacterial growth-controlling factors in drinking water and (ii) the impact of distribution conditions on the extent of bacterial growth in full-scale distribution systems. The approach combines (i) quantification of changes in autochthonous bacterial cell concentrations in full-scale distribution systems with (ii) laboratoryscale batch bacterial growth potential tests of drinking water samples under defined conditions. The growth potential tests were done by direct incubation of water samples, without modification of the original bacterial flora, and with flow cytometric quantification of bacterial growth. This method was shown to be reproducible (ca. 4% relative standard deviation) and sensitive (detection of bacterial growth down to 5 μg L-1 of added assimilable organic carbon). The principle of step-wise assessment of bacterial growth-controlling factors was demonstrated on bottled water, shown to be primarily carbon limited at 133 (±18) × 103 cells mL-1 and secondarily limited by inorganic nutrients at 5,500 (±1,700) × 103 cells mL-1. Analysis of the effluent of a Dutch full-scale drinking water treatment plant showed (1) bacterial growth inhibition as a result of end-point chlorination, (2) organic carbon limitation at 192 (±72) × 103 cells mL-1 and (3) inorganic nutrient limitation at 375 (±31) × 103 cells mL-1. Significantly lower net bacterial growth was measured in the corresponding full-scale distribution system (176 (±25) × 103 cells mL-1) than in the laboratory-scale growth potential test of the same water (294 (±35) × 103 cells mL-1), highlighting the influence of distribution on bacterial growth. The systematic approach described herein provides quantitative information on the effect of drinking water properties and distribution system conditions on biological stability, which can assist water utilities in decision-making on treatment or distribution system improvements to

  9. 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…

  10. Prediction uncertainty assessment of a systems biology model requires a sample of the full probability distribution of its parameters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mourik, van S.; Braak, ter C.J.F.; Stigter, J.D.; Molenaar, J.

    2014-01-01

    Multi-parameter models in systems biology are typically ‘sloppy’: some parameters or combinations of parameters may be hard to estimate from data, whereas others are not. One might expect that parameter uncertainty automatically leads to uncertain predictions, but this is not the case. We illustrate

  11. 植物光响应修正模型中系数的生物学意义研究%Study on biological significance of coefficients in modified model of photosynthesis-irradiance

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    叶子飘; 康华靖

    2012-01-01

    A modified model of photosynthesis-irradiance was used widely in investigating photosynthetic characteristics of plants. However, the biological significances of two coefficients in the modified model were unclear. It showed that two coefficients were considered as photo-inhibition and photo-saturation term, respectively. Through dimension analysis, their biological significances were the product of cross section of photosynthetic pigment in PSI1 for quantum absorption and average life of photosynthetic pigment in the excited state for photo-inhition and photo-saturation term in the modified model of photosynthesis-irradiance. That light absorption cross sections was less and the average lifetimes of photosynthetic pigment in the excited state were longer would not be useful to light energy absorption. On the contrary, that light absorption cross sections was greater and the average lifetimes of photosynthetic pigment in the excited state were shorter would be useful to light energy absorption. Investigations showed that plants were easily photo-inhibited if photo-inhibition and photo-saturation term are large.%植物光合作用对光响应修正模型被广泛应用于植物光合特性的研究,但该模型中系数的生物学意义不清楚.通过分析,认为植物光响应修正模型中系数分别为光抑制项和光饱和项.通过量纲分析,植物光响应修正模型中光抑制项和光饱和项的生物学意义是光系统Ⅱ天线色素分子光量子吸收截面与其处于激发态平均寿命的乘积.光系统Ⅱ天线色素分子处于激发态的平均寿命较长且光量子吸收截面较小,则不利于光量子的吸收;如果光系统Ⅱ天线色素分子的光量子吸收截面较大且其激发态的平均寿命较短,则有利于光量子的吸收.研究结果表明:如果光饱和项系数大且光抑制项系数也大,则植物越容易受抑制;如果光饱和项系数小且光抑制项系数也小,则植物越不容易发生光抑制.

  12. Expression of Pokemon and p53 in breast cancer and its biological significance%Pokemon和p53在乳腺癌组织中的表达及其生物学意义

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    范广民; 曹学全; 杨朝晖; 卢洪胜; 顾华敏; 章辉; 何凯; 陈丽丽

    2015-01-01

    目的:探讨乳腺癌组织中Pokemon和p53蛋白的表达及其相关性,并分析其