WorldWideScience

Sample records for automated high-content screening

  1. Automated microscopy for high-content RNAi screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Fluorescence microscopy is one of the most powerful tools to investigate complex cellular processes such as cell division, cell motility, or intracellular trafficking. The availability of RNA interference (RNAi) technology and automated microscopy has opened the possibility to perform cellular imaging in functional genomics and other large-scale applications. Although imaging often dramatically increases the content of a screening assay, it poses new challenges to achieve accurate quantitative annotation and therefore needs to be carefully adjusted to the specific needs of individual screening applications. In this review, we discuss principles of assay design, large-scale RNAi, microscope automation, and computational data analysis. We highlight strategies for imaging-based RNAi screening adapted to different library and assay designs. PMID:20176920

  2. Automation in high-content flow cytometry screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naumann, U; Wand, M P

    2009-09-01

    High-content flow cytometric screening (FC-HCS) is a 21st Century technology that combines robotic fluid handling, flow cytometric instrumentation, and bioinformatics software, so that relatively large numbers of flow cytometric samples can be processed and analysed in a short period of time. We revisit a recent application of FC-HCS to the problem of cellular signature definition for acute graft-versus-host-disease. Our focus is on automation of the data processing steps using recent advances in statistical methodology. We demonstrate that effective results, on par with those obtained via manual processing, can be achieved using our automatic techniques. Such automation of FC-HCS has the potential to drastically improve diagnosis and biomarker identification.

  3. iScreen: Image-Based High-Content RNAi Screening Analysis Tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Rui; Dong, Xiaonan; Levine, Beth; Xie, Yang; Xiao, Guanghua

    2015-09-01

    High-throughput RNA interference (RNAi) screening has opened up a path to investigating functional genomics in a genome-wide pattern. However, such studies are often restricted to assays that have a single readout format. Recently, advanced image technologies have been coupled with high-throughput RNAi screening to develop high-content screening, in which one or more cell image(s), instead of a single readout, were generated from each well. This image-based high-content screening technology has led to genome-wide functional annotation in a wider spectrum of biological research studies, as well as in drug and target discovery, so that complex cellular phenotypes can be measured in a multiparametric format. Despite these advances, data analysis and visualization tools are still largely lacking for these types of experiments. Therefore, we developed iScreen (image-Based High-content RNAi Screening Analysis Tool), an R package for the statistical modeling and visualization of image-based high-content RNAi screening. Two case studies were used to demonstrate the capability and efficiency of the iScreen package. iScreen is available for download on CRAN (http://cran.cnr.berkeley.edu/web/packages/iScreen/index.html). The user manual is also available as a supplementary document. © 2014 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  4. Step-by-step guide to building an inexpensive 3D printed motorized positioning stage for automated high-content screening microscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneidereit, Dominik; Kraus, Larissa; Meier, Jochen C; Friedrich, Oliver; Gilbert, Daniel F

    2017-06-15

    High-content screening microscopy relies on automation infrastructure that is typically proprietary, non-customizable, costly and requires a high level of skill to use and maintain. The increasing availability of rapid prototyping technology makes it possible to quickly engineer alternatives to conventional automation infrastructure that are low-cost and user-friendly. Here, we describe a 3D printed inexpensive open source and scalable motorized positioning stage for automated high-content screening microscopy and provide detailed step-by-step instructions to re-building the device, including a comprehensive parts list, 3D design files in STEP (Standard for the Exchange of Product model data) and STL (Standard Tessellation Language) format, electronic circuits and wiring diagrams as well as software code. System assembly including 3D printing requires approx. 30h. The fully assembled device is light-weight (1.1kg), small (33×20×8cm) and extremely low-cost (approx. EUR 250). We describe positioning characteristics of the stage, including spatial resolution, accuracy and repeatability, compare imaging data generated with our device to data obtained using a commercially available microplate reader, demonstrate its suitability to high-content microscopy in 96-well high-throughput screening format and validate its applicability to automated functional Cl - - and Ca 2+ -imaging with recombinant HEK293 cells as a model system. A time-lapse video of the stage during operation and as part of a custom assembled screening robot can be found at https://vimeo.com/158813199. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Localization-based super-resolution imaging meets high-content screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beghin, Anne; Kechkar, Adel; Butler, Corey; Levet, Florian; Cabillic, Marine; Rossier, Olivier; Giannone, Gregory; Galland, Rémi; Choquet, Daniel; Sibarita, Jean-Baptiste

    2017-12-01

    Single-molecule localization microscopy techniques have proven to be essential tools for quantitatively monitoring biological processes at unprecedented spatial resolution. However, these techniques are very low throughput and are not yet compatible with fully automated, multiparametric cellular assays. This shortcoming is primarily due to the huge amount of data generated during imaging and the lack of software for automation and dedicated data mining. We describe an automated quantitative single-molecule-based super-resolution methodology that operates in standard multiwell plates and uses analysis based on high-content screening and data-mining software. The workflow is compatible with fixed- and live-cell imaging and allows extraction of quantitative data like fluorophore photophysics, protein clustering or dynamic behavior of biomolecules. We demonstrate that the method is compatible with high-content screening using 3D dSTORM and DNA-PAINT based super-resolution microscopy as well as single-particle tracking.

  6. Integrated Automation of High-Throughput Screening and Reverse Phase Protein Array Sample Preparation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Marlene Lemvig; Block, Ines; List, Markus

    into automated robotic high-throughput screens, which allows subsequent protein quantification. In this integrated solution, samples are directly forwarded to automated cell lysate preparation and preparation of dilution series, including reformatting to a protein spotter-compatible format after the high......-throughput screening. Tracking of huge sample numbers and data analysis from a high-content screen to RPPAs is accomplished via MIRACLE, a custom made software suite developed by us. To this end, we demonstrate that the RPPAs generated in this manner deliver reliable protein readouts and that GAPDH and TFR levels can...

  7. High content screening in microfluidic devices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheong, Raymond; Paliwal, Saurabh; Levchenko, Andre

    2011-01-01

    Importance of the field Miniaturization is key to advancing the state-of-the-art in high content screening (HCS), in order to enable dramatic cost savings through reduced usage of expensive biochemical reagents and to enable large-scale screening on primary cells. Microfluidic technology offers the potential to enable HCS to be performed with an unprecedented degree of miniaturization. Areas covered in this review This perspective highlights a real-world example from the authors’ work of HCS assays implemented in a highly miniaturized microfluidic format. Advantages of this technology are discussed, including cost savings, high throughput screening on primary cells, improved accuracy, the ability to study complex time-varying stimuli, and ease of automation, integration, and scaling. What the reader will gain The reader will understand the capabilities of a new microfluidics-based platform for HCS, and the advantages it provides over conventional plate-based HCS. Take home message Microfluidics technology will drive significant advancements and broader usage and applicability of HCS in drug discovery. PMID:21852997

  8. A Fully Automated High-Throughput Flow Cytometry Screening System Enabling Phenotypic Drug Discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joslin, John; Gilligan, James; Anderson, Paul; Garcia, Catherine; Sharif, Orzala; Hampton, Janice; Cohen, Steven; King, Miranda; Zhou, Bin; Jiang, Shumei; Trussell, Christopher; Dunn, Robert; Fathman, John W; Snead, Jennifer L; Boitano, Anthony E; Nguyen, Tommy; Conner, Michael; Cooke, Mike; Harris, Jennifer; Ainscow, Ed; Zhou, Yingyao; Shaw, Chris; Sipes, Dan; Mainquist, James; Lesley, Scott

    2018-05-01

    The goal of high-throughput screening is to enable screening of compound libraries in an automated manner to identify quality starting points for optimization. This often involves screening a large diversity of compounds in an assay that preserves a connection to the disease pathology. Phenotypic screening is a powerful tool for drug identification, in that assays can be run without prior understanding of the target and with primary cells that closely mimic the therapeutic setting. Advanced automation and high-content imaging have enabled many complex assays, but these are still relatively slow and low throughput. To address this limitation, we have developed an automated workflow that is dedicated to processing complex phenotypic assays for flow cytometry. The system can achieve a throughput of 50,000 wells per day, resulting in a fully automated platform that enables robust phenotypic drug discovery. Over the past 5 years, this screening system has been used for a variety of drug discovery programs, across many disease areas, with many molecules advancing quickly into preclinical development and into the clinic. This report will highlight a diversity of approaches that automated flow cytometry has enabled for phenotypic drug discovery.

  9. High-content screening of yeast mutant libraries by shotgun lipidomics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tarasov, Kirill; Stefanko, Adam; Casanovas, Albert

    2014-01-01

    To identify proteins with a functional role in lipid metabolism and homeostasis we designed a high-throughput platform for high-content lipidomic screening of yeast mutant libraries. To this end, we combined culturing and lipid extraction in 96-well format, automated direct infusion...... factor KAR4 precipitated distinct lipid metabolic phenotypes. These results demonstrate that the high-throughput shotgun lipidomics platform is a valid and complementary proxy for high-content screening of yeast mutant libraries....... nanoelectrospray ionization, high-resolution Orbitrap mass spectrometry, and a dedicated data processing framework to support lipid phenotyping across hundreds of Saccharomyces cerevisiae mutants. Our novel approach revealed that the absence of genes with unknown function YBR141C and YJR015W, and the transcription...

  10. Automated high-content live animal drug screening using C. elegans expressing the aggregation prone serpin α1-antitrypsin Z.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sager J Gosai

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available The development of preclinical models amenable to live animal bioactive compound screening is an attractive approach to discovering effective pharmacological therapies for disorders caused by misfolded and aggregation-prone proteins. In general, however, live animal drug screening is labor and resource intensive, and has been hampered by the lack of robust assay designs and high throughput work-flows. Based on their small size, tissue transparency and ease of cultivation, the use of C. elegans should obviate many of the technical impediments associated with live animal drug screening. Moreover, their genetic tractability and accomplished record for providing insights into the molecular and cellular basis of human disease, should make C. elegans an ideal model system for in vivo drug discovery campaigns. The goal of this study was to determine whether C. elegans could be adapted to high-throughput and high-content drug screening strategies analogous to those developed for cell-based systems. Using transgenic animals expressing fluorescently-tagged proteins, we first developed a high-quality, high-throughput work-flow utilizing an automated fluorescence microscopy platform with integrated image acquisition and data analysis modules to qualitatively assess different biological processes including, growth, tissue development, cell viability and autophagy. We next adapted this technology to conduct a small molecule screen and identified compounds that altered the intracellular accumulation of the human aggregation prone mutant that causes liver disease in α1-antitrypsin deficiency. This study provides powerful validation for advancement in preclinical drug discovery campaigns by screening live C. elegans modeling α1-antitrypsin deficiency and other complex disease phenotypes on high-content imaging platforms.

  11. Active Learning Strategies for Phenotypic Profiling of High-Content Screens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Kevin; Horvath, Peter

    2014-06-01

    High-content screening is a powerful method to discover new drugs and carry out basic biological research. Increasingly, high-content screens have come to rely on supervised machine learning (SML) to perform automatic phenotypic classification as an essential step of the analysis. However, this comes at a cost, namely, the labeled examples required to train the predictive model. Classification performance increases with the number of labeled examples, and because labeling examples demands time from an expert, the training process represents a significant time investment. Active learning strategies attempt to overcome this bottleneck by presenting the most relevant examples to the annotator, thereby achieving high accuracy while minimizing the cost of obtaining labeled data. In this article, we investigate the impact of active learning on single-cell-based phenotype recognition, using data from three large-scale RNA interference high-content screens representing diverse phenotypic profiling problems. We consider several combinations of active learning strategies and popular SML methods. Our results show that active learning significantly reduces the time cost and can be used to reveal the same phenotypic targets identified using SML. We also identify combinations of active learning strategies and SML methods which perform better than others on the phenotypic profiling problems we studied. © 2014 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  12. Fully-Automated High-Throughput NMR System for Screening of Haploid Kernels of Maize (Corn by Measurement of Oil Content.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongzhi Wang

    Full Text Available One of the modern crop breeding techniques uses doubled haploid plants that contain an identical pair of chromosomes in order to accelerate the breeding process. Rapid haploid identification method is critical for large-scale selections of double haploids. The conventional methods based on the color of the endosperm and embryo seeds are slow, manual and prone to error. On the other hand, there exists a significant difference between diploid and haploid seeds generated by high oil inducer, which makes it possible to use oil content to identify the haploid. This paper describes a fully-automated high-throughput NMR screening system for maize haploid kernel identification. The system is comprised of a sampler unit to select a single kernel to feed for measurement of NMR and weight, and a kernel sorter to distribute the kernel according to the measurement result. Tests of the system show a consistent accuracy of 94% with an average screening time of 4 seconds per kernel. Field test result is described and the directions for future improvement are discussed.

  13. Fully-Automated High-Throughput NMR System for Screening of Haploid Kernels of Maize (Corn) by Measurement of Oil Content

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xiaoping; Huang, Qingming; Chen, Shanshan; Yang, Peiqiang; Chen, Shaojiang; Song, Yiqiao

    2016-01-01

    One of the modern crop breeding techniques uses doubled haploid plants that contain an identical pair of chromosomes in order to accelerate the breeding process. Rapid haploid identification method is critical for large-scale selections of double haploids. The conventional methods based on the color of the endosperm and embryo seeds are slow, manual and prone to error. On the other hand, there exists a significant difference between diploid and haploid seeds generated by high oil inducer, which makes it possible to use oil content to identify the haploid. This paper describes a fully-automated high-throughput NMR screening system for maize haploid kernel identification. The system is comprised of a sampler unit to select a single kernel to feed for measurement of NMR and weight, and a kernel sorter to distribute the kernel according to the measurement result. Tests of the system show a consistent accuracy of 94% with an average screening time of 4 seconds per kernel. Field test result is described and the directions for future improvement are discussed. PMID:27454427

  14. Automated Groundwater Screening

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Taylor, Glenn A.; Collard, Leonard B.

    2005-01-01

    The Automated Intruder Analysis has been extended to include an Automated Ground Water Screening option. This option screens 825 radionuclides while rigorously applying the National Council on Radiation Protection (NCRP) methodology. An extension to that methodology is presented to give a more realistic screening factor for those radionuclides which have significant daughters. The extension has the promise of reducing the number of radionuclides which must be tracked by the customer. By combining the Automated Intruder Analysis with the Automated Groundwater Screening a consistent set of assumptions and databases is used. A method is proposed to eliminate trigger values by performing rigorous calculation of the screening factor thereby reducing the number of radionuclides sent to further analysis. Using the same problem definitions as in previous groundwater screenings, the automated groundwater screening found one additional nuclide, Ge-68, which failed the screening. It also found that 18 of the 57 radionuclides contained in NCRP Table 3.1 failed the screening. This report describes the automated groundwater screening computer application

  15. High-content screening of small compounds on human embryonic stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbaric, Ivana; Gokhale, Paul J; Andrews, Peter W

    2010-08-01

    Human ES (embryonic stem) cells and iPS (induced pluripotent stem) cells have been heralded as a source of differentiated cells that could be used in the treatment of degenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's disease or diabetes. Despite the great potential for their use in regenerative therapy, the challenge remains to understand the basic biology of these remarkable cells, in order to differentiate them into any functional cell type. Given the scale of the task, high-throughput screening of agents and culture conditions offers one way to accelerate these studies. The screening of small-compound libraries is particularly amenable to such high-throughput methods. Coupled with high-content screening technology that enables simultaneous assessment of multiple cellular features in an automated and quantitative way, this approach is proving powerful in identifying both small molecules as tools for manipulating stem cell fates and novel mechanisms of differentiation not previously associated with stem cell biology. Such screens performed on human ES cells also demonstrate the usefulness of human ES/iPS cells as cellular models for pharmacological testing of drug efficacy and toxicity, possibly a more imminent use of these cells than in regenerative medicine.

  16. High-Throughput Screening Enhances Kidney Organoid Differentiation from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells and Enables Automated Multidimensional Phenotyping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czerniecki, Stefan M; Cruz, Nelly M; Harder, Jennifer L; Menon, Rajasree; Annis, James; Otto, Edgar A; Gulieva, Ramila E; Islas, Laura V; Kim, Yong Kyun; Tran, Linh M; Martins, Timothy J; Pippin, Jeffrey W; Fu, Hongxia; Kretzler, Matthias; Shankland, Stuart J; Himmelfarb, Jonathan; Moon, Randall T; Paragas, Neal; Freedman, Benjamin S

    2018-05-15

    Organoids derived from human pluripotent stem cells are a potentially powerful tool for high-throughput screening (HTS), but the complexity of organoid cultures poses a significant challenge for miniaturization and automation. Here, we present a fully automated, HTS-compatible platform for enhanced differentiation and phenotyping of human kidney organoids. The entire 21-day protocol, from plating to differentiation to analysis, can be performed automatically by liquid-handling robots, or alternatively by manual pipetting. High-content imaging analysis reveals both dose-dependent and threshold effects during organoid differentiation. Immunofluorescence and single-cell RNA sequencing identify previously undetected parietal, interstitial, and partially differentiated compartments within organoids and define conditions that greatly expand the vascular endothelium. Chemical modulation of toxicity and disease phenotypes can be quantified for safety and efficacy prediction. Screening in gene-edited organoids in this system reveals an unexpected role for myosin in polycystic kidney disease. Organoids in HTS formats thus establish an attractive platform for multidimensional phenotypic screening. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. High-content phenotypic screening and triaging strategy to identify small molecules driving oligodendrocyte progenitor cell differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peppard, Jane V; Rugg, Catherine A; Smicker, Matthew A; Powers, Elaine; Harnish, Erica; Prisco, Joy; Cirovic, Dragan; Wright, Paul S; August, Paul R; Chandross, Karen J

    2015-03-01

    Multiple Sclerosis is a demyelinating disease of the CNS and the primary cause of neurological disability in young adults. Loss of myelinating oligodendrocytes leads to neuronal dysfunction and death and is an important contributing factor to this disease. Endogenous oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs), which on differentiation are responsible for replacing myelin, are present in the adult CNS. As such, therapeutic agents that can stimulate OPCs to differentiate and remyelinate demyelinated axons under pathologic conditions may improve neuronal function and clinical outcome. We describe the details of an automated, cell-based, morphometric-based, high-content screen that is used to identify small molecules eliciting the differentiation of OPCs after 3 days. Primary screening was performed using rat CG-4 cells maintained in culture conditions that normally support a progenitor cell-like state. From a library of 73,000 diverse small molecules within the Sanofi collection, 342 compounds were identified that increased OPC morphological complexity as an indicator of oligodendrocyte maturation. Subsequent to the primary high-content screen, a suite of cellular assays was established that identified 22 nontoxic compounds that selectively stimulated primary rat OPCs but not C2C12 muscle cell differentiation. This rigorous triaging yielded several chemical series for further expansion and bio- or cheminformatics studies, and their compelling biological activity merits further investigation. © 2014 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  18. Advances in Predictive Toxicology for Discovery Safety through High Content Screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Persson, Mikael; Hornberg, Jorrit J

    2016-12-19

    High content screening enables parallel acquisition of multiple molecular and cellular readouts. In particular the predictive toxicology field has progressed from the advances in high content screening, as more refined end points that report on cellular health can be studied in combination, at the single cell level, and in relatively high throughput. Here, we discuss how high content screening has become an essential tool for Discovery Safety, the discipline that integrates safety and toxicology in the drug discovery process to identify and mitigate safety concerns with the aim to design drug candidates with a superior safety profile. In addition to customized mechanistic assays to evaluate target safety, routine screening assays can be applied to identify risk factors for frequently occurring organ toxicities. We discuss the current state of high content screening assays for hepatotoxicity, cardiotoxicity, neurotoxicity, nephrotoxicity, and genotoxicity, including recent developments and current advances.

  19. G protein-coupled receptor internalization assays in the high-content screening format.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haasen, Dorothea; Schnapp, Andreas; Valler, Martin J; Heilker, Ralf

    2006-01-01

    High-content screening (HCS), a combination of fluorescence microscopic imaging and automated image analysis, has become a frequently applied tool to study test compound effects in cellular disease-modeling systems. This chapter describes the measurement of G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) internalization in the HCS format using a high-throughput, confocal cellular imaging device. GPCRs are the most successful group of therapeutic targets on the pharmaceutical market. Accordingly, the search for compounds that interfere with GPCR function in a specific and selective way is a major focus of the pharmaceutical industry today. This chapter describes methods for the ligand-induced internalization of GPCRs labeled previously with either a fluorophore-conjugated ligand or an antibody directed against an N-terminal tag of the GPCR. Both labeling techniques produce robust assay formats. Complementary to other functional GPCR drug discovery assays, internalization assays enable a pharmacological analysis of test compounds. We conclude that GPCR internalization assays represent a valuable medium/high-throughput screening format to determine the cellular activity of GPCR ligands.

  20. The Stanford Automated Mounter: Enabling High-Throughput Protein Crystal Screening at SSRL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, C.A.; Cohen, A.E.

    2009-01-01

    The macromolecular crystallography experiment lends itself perfectly to high-throughput technologies. The initial steps including the expression, purification, and crystallization of protein crystals, along with some of the later steps involving data processing and structure determination have all been automated to the point where some of the last remaining bottlenecks in the process have been crystal mounting, crystal screening, and data collection. At the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory, a National User Facility that provides extremely brilliant X-ray photon beams for use in materials science, environmental science, and structural biology research, the incorporation of advanced robotics has enabled crystals to be screened in a true high-throughput fashion, thus dramatically accelerating the final steps. Up to 288 frozen crystals can be mounted by the beamline robot (the Stanford Auto-Mounting System) and screened for diffraction quality in a matter of hours without intervention. The best quality crystals can then be remounted for the collection of complete X-ray diffraction data sets. Furthermore, the entire screening and data collection experiment can be controlled from the experimenter's home laboratory by means of advanced software tools that enable network-based control of the highly automated beamlines.

  1. A microfluidic array for high-content screening at whole-organism resolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Migliozzi, D.; Cornaglia, M.; Mouchiroud, L.; Auwerx, J.; Gijs, M. A. M.

    2018-02-01

    A main step for the development and the validation of medical drugs is the screening on whole organisms, which gives the systemic information that is missing when using cellular models. Among the organisms of choice, Caenorhabditis elegansis a soil worm which catches the interest of researchers who study systemic physiopathology (e.g. metabolic and neurodegenerative diseases) because: (1) its large genetic homology with humans supports translational analysis; (2) worms are much easier to handle and grow in large amounts compared to rodents, for which (3) the costs and (4) the ethical concerns are substantial.C. elegansis therefore well suited for large screens, dose-response analysis and target-discovery involving an entire organism. We have developed and tested a microfluidic array for high-content screening, enabling the selection of small populations of its first larval stage in many separated chambers divided into channels for multiplexed screens. With automated protocols for feeding, drug administration and image acquisition, our chip enables the study of the nematodes throughout their entire lifespan. By using a paralyzing agent and a mitochondrial-stress inducer as case studies, we have demonstrated large field-of-view motility analysis, and worm-segmentation/signal-detection for mode-of-action quantification with genetically-encoded fluorescence reporters.

  2. PeakCaller: an automated graphical interface for the quantification of intracellular calcium obtained by high-content screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Artimovich, Elena; Jackson, Russell K; Kilander, Michaela B C; Lin, Yu-Chih; Nestor, Michael W

    2017-10-16

    Intracellular calcium is an important ion involved in the regulation and modulation of many neuronal functions. From regulating cell cycle and proliferation to initiating signaling cascades and regulating presynaptic neurotransmitter release, the concentration and timing of calcium activity governs the function and fate of neurons. Changes in calcium transients can be used in high-throughput screening applications as a basic measure of neuronal maturity, especially in developing or immature neuronal cultures derived from stem cells. Using human induced pluripotent stem cell derived neurons and dissociated mouse cortical neurons combined with the calcium indicator Fluo-4, we demonstrate that PeakCaller reduces type I and type II error in automated peak calling when compared to the oft-used PeakFinder algorithm under both basal and pharmacologically induced conditions. Here we describe PeakCaller, a novel MATLAB script and graphical user interface for the quantification of intracellular calcium transients in neuronal cultures. PeakCaller allows the user to set peak parameters and smoothing algorithms to best fit their data set. This new analysis script will allow for automation of calcium measurements and is a powerful software tool for researchers interested in high-throughput measurements of intracellular calcium.

  3. Upscaling and automation of electrophysiology: toward high throughput screening in ion channel drug discovery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Asmild, Margit; Oswald, Nicholas; Krzywkowski, Karen M

    2003-01-01

    by developing two lines of automated patch clamp products, a traditional pipette-based system called Apatchi-1, and a silicon chip-based system QPatch. The degree of automation spans from semi-automation (Apatchi-1) where a trained technician interacts with the system in a limited way, to a complete automation...... (QPatch 96) where the system works continuously and unattended until screening of a full compound library is completed. The performance of the systems range from medium to high throughputs....

  4. High Content Screening: Understanding Cellular Pathway

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mohamed Zaffar Ali Mohamed Amiroudine; Daryl Jesus Arapoc; Zainah Adam; Shafii Khamis

    2015-01-01

    High content screening (HCS) is the convergence between cell-based assays, high-resolution fluorescence imaging, phase-contrast imaging of fixed- or live-cell assays, tissues and small organisms. It has been widely adopted in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries for target identification and validation and as secondary screens to reveal potential toxicities or to elucidate a drugs mechanism of action. By using the ImageXpress® Micro XLS System HCS, the complex network of key players controlling proliferation and apoptosis can be reduced to several sentinel markers for analysis. Cell proliferation and apoptosis are two key areas in cell biology and drug discovery research. Understanding the signaling pathways in cell proliferation and apoptosis is important for new therapeutic discovery because the imbalance between these two events is predominant in the progression of many human diseases, including cancer. The DNA binding dye DAPI is used to determine the nuclear size and nuclear morphology as well as cell cycle phases by DNA content. Images together with MetaXpress® analysis results provide a convenient and easy to use solution to high volume image management. In particular, HCS platform is beginning to have an important impact on early drug discovery, basic research in systems cell biology, and is expected to play a role in personalized medicine or revealing off-target drug effects. (author)

  5. An automated high throughput screening-compatible assay to identify regulators of stem cell neural differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casalino, Laura; Magnani, Dario; De Falco, Sandro; Filosa, Stefania; Minchiotti, Gabriella; Patriarca, Eduardo J; De Cesare, Dario

    2012-03-01

    The use of Embryonic Stem Cells (ESCs) holds considerable promise both for drug discovery programs and the treatment of degenerative disorders in regenerative medicine approaches. Nevertheless, the successful use of ESCs is still limited by the lack of efficient control of ESC self-renewal and differentiation capabilities. In this context, the possibility to modulate ESC biological properties and to obtain homogenous populations of correctly specified cells will help developing physiologically relevant screens, designed for the identification of stem cell modulators. Here, we developed a high throughput screening-suitable ESC neural differentiation assay by exploiting the Cell(maker) robotic platform and demonstrated that neural progenies can be generated from ESCs in complete automation, with high standards of accuracy and reliability. Moreover, we performed a pilot screening providing proof of concept that this assay allows the identification of regulators of ESC neural differentiation in full automation.

  6. High content screening of defined chemical libraries using normal and glioma-derived neural stem cell lines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danovi, Davide; Folarin, Amos A; Baranowski, Bart; Pollard, Steven M

    2012-01-01

    Small molecules with potent biological effects on the fate of normal and cancer-derived stem cells represent both useful research tools and new drug leads for regenerative medicine and oncology. Long-term expansion of mouse and human neural stem cells is possible using adherent monolayer culture. These cultures represent a useful cellular resource to carry out image-based high content screening of small chemical libraries. Improvements in automated microscopy, desktop computational power, and freely available image processing tools, now means that such chemical screens are realistic to undertake in individual academic laboratories. Here we outline a cost effective and versatile time lapse imaging strategy suitable for chemical screening. Protocols are described for the handling and screening of human fetal Neural Stem (NS) cell lines and their malignant counterparts, Glioblastoma-derived neural stem cells (GNS). We focus on identification of cytostatic and cytotoxic "hits" and discuss future possibilities and challenges for extending this approach to assay lineage commitment and differentiation. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. A novel automatic quantification method for high-content screening analysis of DNA double strand-break response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Jingwen; Lin, Jie; Zhang, Pengquan; Yang, Songnan; Sa, Yu; Feng, Yuanming

    2017-08-29

    High-content screening is commonly used in studies of the DNA damage response. The double-strand break (DSB) is one of the most harmful types of DNA damage lesions. The conventional method used to quantify DSBs is γH2AX foci counting, which requires manual adjustment and preset parameters and is usually regarded as imprecise, time-consuming, poorly reproducible, and inaccurate. Therefore, a robust automatic alternative method is highly desired. In this manuscript, we present a new method for quantifying DSBs which involves automatic image cropping, automatic foci-segmentation and fluorescent intensity measurement. Furthermore, an additional function was added for standardizing the measurement of DSB response inhibition based on co-localization analysis. We tested the method with a well-known inhibitor of DSB response. The new method requires only one preset parameter, which effectively minimizes operator-dependent variations. Compared with conventional methods, the new method detected a higher percentage difference of foci formation between different cells, which can improve measurement accuracy. The effects of the inhibitor on DSB response were successfully quantified with the new method (p = 0.000). The advantages of this method in terms of reliability, automation and simplicity show its potential in quantitative fluorescence imaging studies and high-content screening for compounds and factors involved in DSB response.

  8. A cell-based high-throughput screening assay for radiation susceptibility using automated cell counting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hodzic, Jasmina; Dingjan, Ilse; Maas, Mariëlle JP; Meulen-Muileman, Ida H van der; Menezes, Renee X de; Heukelom, Stan; Verheij, Marcel; Gerritsen, Winald R; Geldof, Albert A; Triest, Baukelien van; Beusechem, Victor W van

    2015-01-01

    Radiotherapy is one of the mainstays in the treatment for cancer, but its success can be limited due to inherent or acquired resistance. Mechanisms underlying radioresistance in various cancers are poorly understood and available radiosensitizers have shown only modest clinical benefit. There is thus a need to identify new targets and drugs for more effective sensitization of cancer cells to irradiation. Compound and RNA interference high-throughput screening technologies allow comprehensive enterprises to identify new agents and targets for radiosensitization. However, the gold standard assay to investigate radiosensitivity of cancer cells in vitro, the colony formation assay (CFA), is unsuitable for high-throughput screening. We developed a new high-throughput screening method for determining radiation susceptibility. Fast and uniform irradiation of batches up to 30 microplates was achieved using a Perspex container and a clinically employed linear accelerator. The readout was done by automated counting of fluorescently stained nuclei using the Acumen eX3 laser scanning cytometer. Assay performance was compared to that of the CFA and the CellTiter-Blue homogeneous uniform-well cell viability assay. The assay was validated in a whole-genome siRNA library screening setting using PC-3 prostate cancer cells. On 4 different cancer cell lines, the automated cell counting assay produced radiation dose response curves that followed a linear-quadratic equation and that exhibited a better correlation to the results of the CFA than did the cell viability assay. Moreover, the cell counting assay could be used to detect radiosensitization by silencing DNA-PKcs or by adding caffeine. In a high-throughput screening setting, using 4 Gy irradiated and control PC-3 cells, the effects of DNA-PKcs siRNA and non-targeting control siRNA could be clearly discriminated. We developed a simple assay for radiation susceptibility that can be used for high-throughput screening. This will aid

  9. Development of automatic image analysis methods for high-throughput and high-content screening

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Di, Zi

    2013-01-01

    This thesis focuses on the development of image analysis methods for ultra-high content analysis of high-throughput screens where cellular phenotype responses to various genetic or chemical perturbations that are under investigation. Our primary goal is to deliver efficient and robust image analysis

  10. Automated analysis of high-content microscopy data with deep learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraus, Oren Z; Grys, Ben T; Ba, Jimmy; Chong, Yolanda; Frey, Brendan J; Boone, Charles; Andrews, Brenda J

    2017-04-18

    Existing computational pipelines for quantitative analysis of high-content microscopy data rely on traditional machine learning approaches that fail to accurately classify more than a single dataset without substantial tuning and training, requiring extensive analysis. Here, we demonstrate that the application of deep learning to biological image data can overcome the pitfalls associated with conventional machine learning classifiers. Using a deep convolutional neural network (DeepLoc) to analyze yeast cell images, we show improved performance over traditional approaches in the automated classification of protein subcellular localization. We also demonstrate the ability of DeepLoc to classify highly divergent image sets, including images of pheromone-arrested cells with abnormal cellular morphology, as well as images generated in different genetic backgrounds and in different laboratories. We offer an open-source implementation that enables updating DeepLoc on new microscopy datasets. This study highlights deep learning as an important tool for the expedited analysis of high-content microscopy data. © 2017 The Authors. Published under the terms of the CC BY 4.0 license.

  11. A deep learning and novelty detection framework for rapid phenotyping in high-content screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sommer, Christoph; Hoefler, Rudolf; Samwer, Matthias; Gerlich, Daniel W.

    2017-01-01

    Supervised machine learning is a powerful and widely used method for analyzing high-content screening data. Despite its accuracy, efficiency, and versatility, supervised machine learning has drawbacks, most notably its dependence on a priori knowledge of expected phenotypes and time-consuming classifier training. We provide a solution to these limitations with CellCognition Explorer, a generic novelty detection and deep learning framework. Application to several large-scale screening data sets on nuclear and mitotic cell morphologies demonstrates that CellCognition Explorer enables discovery of rare phenotypes without user training, which has broad implications for improved assay development in high-content screening. PMID:28954863

  12. High-content screening in zebrafish embryos identifies butafenacil as a potent inducer of anemia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica K Leet

    Full Text Available Using transgenic zebrafish (fli1:egfp that stably express enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP within vascular endothelial cells, we recently developed and optimized a 384-well high-content screening (HCS assay that enables us to screen and identify chemicals affecting cardiovascular development and function at non-teratogenic concentrations. Within this assay, automated image acquisition procedures and custom image analysis protocols are used to quantify body length, heart rate, circulation, pericardial area, and intersegmental vessel area within individual live embryos exposed from 5 to 72 hours post-fertilization. After ranking developmental toxicity data generated from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's zebrafish teratogenesis assay, we screened 26 of the most acutely toxic chemicals within EPA's ToxCast Phase-I library in concentration-response format (0.05-50 µM using this HCS assay. Based on this screen, we identified butafenacil as a potent inducer of anemia, as exposure from 0.39 to 3.125 µM butafenacil completely abolished arterial circulation in the absence of effects on all other endpoints evaluated. Butafenacil is an herbicide that inhibits protoporphyrinogen oxidase (PPO--an enzyme necessary for heme production in vertebrates. Using o-dianisidine staining, we then revealed that severe butafenacil-induced anemia in zebrafish was due to a complete loss of hemoglobin following exposure during early development. Therefore, six additional PPO inhibitors within the ToxCast Phase-I library were screened to determine whether anemia represents a common adverse outcome for these herbicides. Embryonic exposure to only one of these PPO inhibitors--flumioxazin--resulted in a similar phenotype as butafenacil, albeit not as severe as butafenacil. Overall, this study highlights the potential utility of this assay for (1 screening chemicals for cardiovascular toxicity and (2 prioritizing chemicals for future hypothesis

  13. Automation of High-Throughput Crystal Screening and Data Collection at SSRL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miller, Mitchell D.; Brinen, Linda S.; Deacon, Ashley M.; Bedem, Henry van den; Wolf, Guenter; Xu Qingping; Zhang Zepu; Cohen, Aina; Ellis, Paul; McPhillips, Scott E.; McPhillips, Timothy M.; Phizackerley, R. Paul; Soltis, S. Michael

    2004-01-01

    A robotic system for auto-mounting crystals from liquid nitrogen is now operational on SSRL beamlines (Cohen et al., J. Appl. Cryst. (2002). 35, 720-726). The system uses a small industrial 4-axis robot with a custom built actuator. Once mounted, automated alignment of the sample loop to the X-ray beam readies the crystal for data collection. After data collection, samples are returned to the cassette. The beamline Dewar accommodates three compact sample cassettes (holding up to 96 samples each). During the past 4 months, the system on beamline 11-1 has been used to screen over 1000 crystals. The system has reduced both screening time and manpower. Integration of the hardware components is accomplished in the Distributed Control System architecture developed at SSRL (McPhillips et al., J. Synchrotron Rad. (2002) 9, 401-406). A crystal-screening interface has been implemented in Blu-Ice. Sample details can be uploaded from an Excel spreadsheet. The JCSG generates these spreadsheets automatically from their tracking database using standard database tools (http://www.jcsg.org). New diffraction image analysis tools are being employed to aid in extracting results. Automation also permits tele-presence. For example, samples have been changed during the night without leaving home and scientists have screened crystals 1600 miles from the beamline. The system developed on beamline 11-1 has been replicated onto 1-5, 9-1, 9-2, and 11-3 and is used by both general users and the JCSG

  14. A high-throughput screening system for barley/powdery mildew interactions based on automated analysis of light micrographs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ihlow, Alexander; Schweizer, Patrick; Seiffert, Udo

    2008-01-23

    To find candidate genes that potentially influence the susceptibility or resistance of crop plants to powdery mildew fungi, an assay system based on transient-induced gene silencing (TIGS) as well as transient over-expression in single epidermal cells of barley has been developed. However, this system relies on quantitative microscopic analysis of the barley/powdery mildew interaction and will only become a high-throughput tool of phenomics upon automation of the most time-consuming steps. We have developed a high-throughput screening system based on a motorized microscope which evaluates the specimens fully automatically. A large-scale double-blind verification of the system showed an excellent agreement of manual and automated analysis and proved the system to work dependably. Furthermore, in a series of bombardment experiments an RNAi construct targeting the Mlo gene was included, which is expected to phenocopy resistance mediated by recessive loss-of-function alleles such as mlo5. In most cases, the automated analysis system recorded a shift towards resistance upon RNAi of Mlo, thus providing proof of concept for its usefulness in detecting gene-target effects. Besides saving labor and enabling a screening of thousands of candidate genes, this system offers continuous operation of expensive laboratory equipment and provides a less subjective analysis as well as a complete and enduring documentation of the experimental raw data in terms of digital images. In general, it proves the concept of enabling available microscope hardware to handle challenging screening tasks fully automatically.

  15. HCS-Neurons: identifying phenotypic changes in multi-neuron images upon drug treatments of high-content screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charoenkwan, Phasit; Hwang, Eric; Cutler, Robert W; Lee, Hua-Chin; Ko, Li-Wei; Huang, Hui-Ling; Ho, Shinn-Ying

    2013-01-01

    High-content screening (HCS) has become a powerful tool for drug discovery. However, the discovery of drugs targeting neurons is still hampered by the inability to accurately identify and quantify the phenotypic changes of multiple neurons in a single image (named multi-neuron image) of a high-content screen. Therefore, it is desirable to develop an automated image analysis method for analyzing multi-neuron images. We propose an automated analysis method with novel descriptors of neuromorphology features for analyzing HCS-based multi-neuron images, called HCS-neurons. To observe multiple phenotypic changes of neurons, we propose two kinds of descriptors which are neuron feature descriptor (NFD) of 13 neuromorphology features, e.g., neurite length, and generic feature descriptors (GFDs), e.g., Haralick texture. HCS-neurons can 1) automatically extract all quantitative phenotype features in both NFD and GFDs, 2) identify statistically significant phenotypic changes upon drug treatments using ANOVA and regression analysis, and 3) generate an accurate classifier to group neurons treated by different drug concentrations using support vector machine and an intelligent feature selection method. To evaluate HCS-neurons, we treated P19 neurons with nocodazole (a microtubule depolymerizing drug which has been shown to impair neurite development) at six concentrations ranging from 0 to 1000 ng/mL. The experimental results show that all the 13 features of NFD have statistically significant difference with respect to changes in various levels of nocodazole drug concentrations (NDC) and the phenotypic changes of neurites were consistent to the known effect of nocodazole in promoting neurite retraction. Three identified features, total neurite length, average neurite length, and average neurite area were able to achieve an independent test accuracy of 90.28% for the six-dosage classification problem. This NFD module and neuron image datasets are provided as a freely downloadable

  16. Impedance sensor technology for cell-based assays in the framework of a high-content screening system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schwarzenberger, T; Wolf, P; Brischwein, M; Kleinhans, R; Demmel, F; Becker, B; Wolf, B; Lechner, A

    2011-01-01

    Living cultured cells react to external influences, such as pharmaceutical agents, in an intricate manner due to their complex internal signal processing. Impedance sensing of cells on microelectrodes is a favored label-free technology to indicate cellular events, usually ascribed to morphologic alteration or changes in cellular adhesion, which is usually found in stand-alone systems that do not incorporate life support or additional sensor systems. However, only in symbiosis with metabolic activity sensing and picture documentation may a complete insight into cellular vitality be provided. This complement was created within the framework of an automated high-content screening system previously developed by our group, monitoring 24 cell culture chambers in parallel. The objective of this paper is the development of miniaturized electronics for impedance measurements and its system integration as a modular unit. In addition, it is shown how sensor electrodes were optimized by impedance matching such that spectroscopy and raw data analysis become feasible for every culture well. Undesired mechanical stress on cultured cells may arise from the medium and agent support system of the autonomous screening apparatus. This paper demonstrates how this hazard is treated with the simulation of microfluidics and impedance measurements. Physiological data are subsequently derived from the exemplary tumor cell line MCF-7 both during treatment with the agent doxorubicin and through the impact of natural killer cells. This correlates the information content of complex impedance spectra with cellular respiration as well as data from microscopy

  17. Impact of image segmentation on high-content screening data quality for SK-BR-3 cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Yizheng

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background High content screening (HCS is a powerful method for the exploration of cellular signalling and morphology that is rapidly being adopted in cancer research. HCS uses automated microscopy to collect images of cultured cells. The images are subjected to segmentation algorithms to identify cellular structures and quantitate their morphology, for hundreds to millions of individual cells. However, image analysis may be imperfect, especially for "HCS-unfriendly" cell lines whose morphology is not well handled by current image segmentation algorithms. We asked if segmentation errors were common for a clinically relevant cell line, if such errors had measurable effects on the data, and if HCS data could be improved by automated identification of well-segmented cells. Results Cases of poor cell body segmentation occurred frequently for the SK-BR-3 cell line. We trained classifiers to identify SK-BR-3 cells that were well segmented. On an independent test set created by human review of cell images, our optimal support-vector machine classifier identified well-segmented cells with 81% accuracy. The dose responses of morphological features were measurably different in well- and poorly-segmented populations. Elimination of the poorly-segmented cell population increased the purity of DNA content distributions, while appropriately retaining biological heterogeneity, and simultaneously increasing our ability to resolve specific morphological changes in perturbed cells. Conclusion Image segmentation has a measurable impact on HCS data. The application of a multivariate shape-based filter to identify well-segmented cells improved HCS data quality for an HCS-unfriendly cell line, and could be a valuable post-processing step for some HCS datasets.

  18. Automated Electrophysiology Makes the Pace for Cardiac Ion Channel Safety Screening

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clemens eMoeller

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available The field of automated patch-clamp electrophysiology has emerged from the tension between the pharmaceutical industry’s need for high-throughput compound screening versus its need to be conservative due to regulatory requirements. On the one hand, hERG channel screening was increasingly requested for new chemical entities, as the correlation between blockade of the ion channel coded by hERG and Torsades de Pointes cardiac arrhythmia gained increasing attention. On the other hand, manual patch-clamping, typically quoted as the gold-standard for understanding ion channel function and modulation, was far too slow (and, consequently, too expensive for keeping pace with the numbers of compounds submitted for hERG channel investigations from pharmaceutical R&D departments. In consequence it became more common for some pharmaceutical companies to outsource safety pharmacological investigations, with a focus on hERG channel interactions. This outsourcing has allowed those pharmaceutical companies to build up operational flexibility and greater independence from internal resources, and allowed them to obtain access to the latest technological developments that emerged in automated patch-clamp electrophysiology – much of which arose in specialized biotech companies. Assays for nearly all major cardiac ion channels are now available by automated patch-clamping using heterologous expression systems, and recently, automated action potential recordings from stem-cell derived cardiomyocytes have been demonstrated. Today, most of the large pharmaceutical companies have acquired automated electrophysiology robots and have established various automated cardiac ion channel safety screening assays on these, in addition to outsourcing parts of their needs for safety screening.

  19. Anti-cancer agents in Saudi Arabian herbals revealed by automated high-content imaging

    KAUST Repository

    Hajjar, Dina A.; Kremb, Stephan Georg; Sioud, Salim; Emwas, Abdul-Hamid M.; Voolstra, Christian R.; Ravasi, Timothy

    2017-01-01

    in cancer therapy. Here, we used cell-based phenotypic profiling and image-based high-content screening to study the mode of action and potential cellular targets of plants historically used in Saudi Arabia's traditional medicine. We compared the cytological

  20. Automated screening for retinopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. S. Rodin

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Retinal pathology is a common cause of an irreversible decrease of central vision commonly found amongst senior population. Detection of the earliest signs of retinal diseases can be facilitated by viewing retinal images available from the telemedicine networks. To facilitate the process of retinal images, screening software applications based on image recognition technology are currently on the various stages of development.Purpose: To develop and implement computerized image recognition software that can be used as a decision support technologyfor retinal image screening for various types of retinopathies.Methods: The software application for the retina image recognition has been developed using C++ language. It was tested on dataset of 70 images with various types of pathological features (age related macular degeneration, chorioretinitis, central serous chorioretinopathy and diabetic retinopathy.Results: It was shown that the system can achieve a sensitivity of 73 % and specificity of 72 %.Conclusion: Automated detection of macular lesions using proposed software can significantly reduce manual grading workflow. In addition, automated detection of retinal lesions can be implemented as a clinical decision support system for telemedicine screening. It is anticipated that further development of this technology can become a part of diagnostic image analysis system for the electronic health records.

  1. Neuronal models for evaluation of proliferation in vitro using high content screening

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mundy, William R.; Radio, Nicholas M.; Freudenrich, Theresa M.

    2010-01-01

    In vitro test methods can provide a rapid approach for the screening of large numbers of chemicals for their potential to produce toxicity (hazard identification). In order to identify potential developmental neurotoxicants, a battery of in vitro tests for neurodevelopmental processes such as cell proliferation, differentiation, growth, and synaptogenesis has been proposed. The development of in vitro approaches for toxicity testing will require choosing a model system that is appropriate to the endpoint of concern. This study compared several cell lines as models for neuronal proliferation. The sensitivities of neuronal cell lines derived from three species (PC12, rat; N1E-115, mouse; SH-SY5Y, human) to chemicals known to affect cell proliferation were assessed using a high content screening system. After optimizing conditions for cell growth in 96-well plates, proliferation was measured as the incorporation of 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine (BrdU) into replicating DNA during S phase. BrdU-labeled cells were detected by immunocytochemistry and cell counts were obtained using automated image acquisition and analysis. The three cell lines showed approximately 30-40% of the population in S phase after a 4 h pulse of BrdU. Exposure to the DNA polymerase inhibitor aphidicolin for 20 h prior to the 4 h pulse of BrdU significantly decreased proliferation in all three cell lines. The sensitivities of the cell lines were compared by exposure to eight chemicals known to affect proliferation (positive controls) and determination of the concentration inhibiting proliferation by 50% of control (I 50 ). PC12 cells were the most sensitive to chemicals; 6 out of 8 chemicals (aphidicolin, cadmium, cytosine arabinoside, dexamethasone, 5-fluorouracil, and methylmercury) inhibited proliferation at the concentrations tested. SH-SY5Y cells were somewhat less sensitive to chemical effects, with five out of eight chemicals inhibiting proliferation; dexamethasone had no effect, and cadmium

  2. The development of high-content screening (HCS) technology and its importance to drug discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fraietta, Ivan; Gasparri, Fabio

    2016-01-01

    High-content screening (HCS) was introduced about twenty years ago as a promising analytical approach to facilitate some critical aspects of drug discovery. Its application has spread progressively within the pharmaceutical industry and academia to the point that it today represents a fundamental tool in supporting drug discovery and development. Here, the authors review some of significant progress in the HCS field in terms of biological models and assay readouts. They highlight the importance of high-content screening in drug discovery, as testified by its numerous applications in a variety of therapeutic areas: oncology, infective diseases, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases. They also dissect the role of HCS technology in different phases of the drug discovery pipeline: target identification, primary compound screening, secondary assays, mechanism of action studies and in vitro toxicology. Recent advances in cellular assay technologies, such as the introduction of three-dimensional (3D) cultures, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and genome editing technologies (e.g., CRISPR/Cas9), have tremendously expanded the potential of high-content assays to contribute to the drug discovery process. Increasingly predictive cellular models and readouts, together with the development of more sophisticated and affordable HCS readers, will further consolidate the role of HCS technology in drug discovery.

  3. Feasibility evaluation of 3 automated cellular drug screening assays on a robotic workstation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soikkeli, Anne; Sempio, Cristina; Kaukonen, Ann Marie; Urtti, Arto; Hirvonen, Jouni; Yliperttula, Marjo

    2010-01-01

    This study presents the implementation and optimization of 3 cell-based assays on a TECAN Genesis workstation-the Caspase-Glo 3/7 and sulforhodamine B (SRB) screening assays and the mechanistic Caco-2 permeability protocol-and evaluates their feasibility for automation. During implementation, the dispensing speed to add drug solutions and fixative trichloroacetic acid and the aspiration speed to remove the supernatant immediately after fixation were optimized. Decontamination steps for cleaning the tips and pipetting tubing were also added. The automated Caspase-Glo 3/7 screen was successfully optimized with Caco-2 cells (Z' 0.7, signal-to-base ratio [S/B] 1.7) but not with DU-145 cells. In contrast, the automated SRB screen was successfully optimized with the DU-145 cells (Z' 0.8, S/B 2.4) but not with the Caco-2 cells (Z' -0.8, S/B 1.4). The automated bidirectional Caco-2 permeability experiments separated successfully low- and high-permeability compounds (Z' 0.8, S/B 84.2) and passive drug permeation from efflux-mediated transport (Z' 0.5, S/B 8.6). Of the assays, the homogeneous Caspase-Glo 3/7 assay benefits the most from automation, but also the heterogeneous SRB assay and Caco-2 permeability experiments gain advantages from automation.

  4. High-content, high-throughput screening for the identification of cytotoxic compounds based on cell morphology and cell proliferation markers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heather L Martin

    Full Text Available Toxicity is a major cause of failure in drug discovery and development, and whilst robust toxicological testing occurs, efficiency could be improved if compounds with cytotoxic characteristics were identified during primary compound screening. The use of high-content imaging in primary screening is becoming more widespread, and by utilising phenotypic approaches it should be possible to incorporate cytotoxicity counter-screens into primary screens. Here we present a novel phenotypic assay that can be used as a counter-screen to identify compounds with adverse cellular effects. This assay has been developed using U2OS cells, the PerkinElmer Operetta high-content/high-throughput imaging system and Columbus image analysis software. In Columbus, algorithms were devised to identify changes in nuclear morphology, cell shape and proliferation using DAPI, TOTO-3 and phosphohistone H3 staining, respectively. The algorithms were developed and tested on cells treated with doxorubicin, taxol and nocodazole. The assay was then used to screen a novel, chemical library, rich in natural product-like molecules of over 300 compounds, 13.6% of which were identified as having adverse cellular effects. This assay provides a relatively cheap and rapid approach for identifying compounds with adverse cellular effects during screening assays, potentially reducing compound rejection due to toxicity in subsequent in vitro and in vivo assays.

  5. Automating Behavioral Health Screening - Addressing Risk Communication Electronically

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Crow, Bruce E; Gahm, Gregory

    2004-01-01

    ... outpatient behavioral health clinic and 3,451 Soldiers screened 90 days following return from OIF deployment. The screening was completed via scanning software and has more recently been updated to a completed automated kiosk system...

  6. Shedding Light on Filovirus Infection with High-Content Imaging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rekha G. Panchal

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Microscopy has been instrumental in the discovery and characterization of microorganisms. Major advances in high-throughput fluorescence microscopy and automated, high-content image analysis tools are paving the way to the systematic and quantitative study of the molecular properties of cellular systems, both at the population and at the single-cell level. High-Content Imaging (HCI has been used to characterize host-virus interactions in genome-wide reverse genetic screens and to identify novel cellular factors implicated in the binding, entry, replication and egress of several pathogenic viruses. Here we present an overview of the most significant applications of HCI in the context of the cell biology of filovirus infection. HCI assays have been recently implemented to quantitatively study filoviruses in cell culture, employing either infectious viruses in a BSL-4 environment or surrogate genetic systems in a BSL-2 environment. These assays are becoming instrumental for small molecule and siRNA screens aimed at the discovery of both cellular therapeutic targets and of compounds with anti-viral properties. We discuss the current practical constraints limiting the implementation of high-throughput biology in a BSL-4 environment, and propose possible solutions to safely perform high-content, high-throughput filovirus infection assays. Finally, we discuss possible novel applications of HCI in the context of filovirus research with particular emphasis on the identification of possible cellular biomarkers of virus infection.

  7. Performance of an automated electronic acute lung injury screening system in intensive care unit patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koenig, Helen C; Finkel, Barbara B; Khalsa, Satjeet S; Lanken, Paul N; Prasad, Meeta; Urbani, Richard; Fuchs, Barry D

    2011-01-01

    Lung protective ventilation reduces mortality in patients with acute lung injury, but underrecognition of acute lung injury has limited its use. We recently validated an automated electronic acute lung injury surveillance system in patients with major trauma in a single intensive care unit. In this study, we assessed the system's performance as a prospective acute lung injury screening tool in a diverse population of intensive care unit patients. Patients were screened prospectively for acute lung injury over 21 wks by the automated system and by an experienced research coordinator who manually screened subjects for enrollment in Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome Clinical Trials Network (ARDSNet) trials. Performance of the automated system was assessed by comparing its results with the manual screening process. Discordant results were adjudicated blindly by two physician reviewers. In addition, a sensitivity analysis using a range of assumptions was conducted to better estimate the system's performance. The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, an academic medical center and ARDSNet center (1994-2006). Intubated patients in medical and surgical intensive care units. None. Of 1270 patients screened, 84 were identified with acute lung injury (incidence of 6.6%). The automated screening system had a sensitivity of 97.6% (95% confidence interval, 96.8-98.4%) and a specificity of 97.6% (95% confidence interval, 96.8-98.4%). The manual screening algorithm had a sensitivity of 57.1% (95% confidence interval, 54.5-59.8%) and a specificity of 99.7% (95% confidence interval, 99.4-100%). Sensitivity analysis demonstrated a range for sensitivity of 75.0-97.6% of the automated system under varying assumptions. Under all assumptions, the automated system demonstrated higher sensitivity than and comparable specificity to the manual screening method. An automated electronic system identified patients with acute lung injury with high sensitivity and specificity in diverse

  8. Automated high-content assay for compounds selectively toxic to Trypanosoma cruzi in a myoblastic cell line.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julio Alonso-Padilla

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Chagas disease, caused by the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma cruzi, represents a very important public health problem in Latin America where it is endemic. Although mostly asymptomatic at its initial stage, after the disease becomes chronic, about a third of the infected patients progress to a potentially fatal outcome due to severe damage of heart and gut tissues. There is an urgent need for new drugs against Chagas disease since there are only two drugs available, benznidazole and nifurtimox, and both show toxic side effects and variable efficacy against the chronic stage of the disease.Genetically engineered parasitic strains are used for high throughput screening (HTS of large chemical collections in the search for new anti-parasitic compounds. These assays, although successful, are limited to reporter transgenic parasites and do not cover the wide T. cruzi genetic background. With the aim to contribute to the early drug discovery process against Chagas disease we have developed an automated image-based 384-well plate HTS assay for T. cruzi amastigote replication in a rat myoblast host cell line. An image analysis script was designed to inform on three outputs: total number of host cells, ratio of T. cruzi amastigotes per cell and percentage of infected cells, which respectively provides one host cell toxicity and two T. cruzi toxicity readouts. The assay was statistically robust (Z´ values >0.6 and was validated against a series of known anti-trypanosomatid drugs.We have established a highly reproducible, high content HTS assay for screening of chemical compounds against T. cruzi infection of myoblasts that is amenable for use with any T. cruzi strain capable of in vitro infection. Our visual assay informs on both anti-parasitic and host cell toxicity readouts in a single experiment, allowing the direct identification of compounds selectively targeted to the parasite.

  9. High Throughput Screen for Novel Antimicrobials using a Whole Animal Infection Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moy, Terence I.; Conery, Annie L.; Larkins-Ford, Jonah; Wu, Gang; Mazitschek, Ralph; Casadei, Gabriele; Lewis, Kim; Carpenter, Anne E.; Ausubel, Frederick M.

    2009-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is a unique whole animal model system for identifying small molecules with in vivo anti-infective properties. C. elegans can be infected with a broad range of human pathogens, including Enterococcus faecalis, an important human nosocomial pathogen with a mortality rate of up to 37% that is increasingly acquiring resistance to antibiotics. Here, we describe an automated, high throughput screen of 37,200 compounds and natural product extracts for those that enhance survival of C. elegans infected with E. faecalis. The screen uses a robot to accurately dispense live, infected animals into 384-well plates, and automated microscopy and image analysis to generate quantitative, high content data. We identified 28 compounds and extracts that were not previously reported to have antimicrobial properties, including 6 structural classes that cure infected C. elegans animals but do not affect the growth of the pathogen in vitro, thus acting by a mechanism of action distinct from antibiotics currently in clinical use. Our versatile and robust screening system can be easily adapted for other whole animal assays to probe a broad range of biological processes. PMID:19572548

  10. Automation in airport security X-ray screening of cabin baggage: Examining benefits and possible implementations of automated explosives detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hättenschwiler, Nicole; Sterchi, Yanik; Mendes, Marcia; Schwaninger, Adrian

    2018-10-01

    Bomb attacks on civil aviation make detecting improvised explosive devices and explosive material in passenger baggage a major concern. In the last few years, explosive detection systems for cabin baggage screening (EDSCB) have become available. Although used by a number of airports, most countries have not yet implemented these systems on a wide scale. We investigated the benefits of EDSCB with two different levels of automation currently being discussed by regulators and airport operators: automation as a diagnostic aid with an on-screen alarm resolution by the airport security officer (screener) or EDSCB with an automated decision by the machine. The two experiments reported here tested and compared both scenarios and a condition without automation as baseline. Participants were screeners at two international airports who differed in both years of work experience and familiarity with automation aids. Results showed that experienced screeners were good at detecting improvised explosive devices even without EDSCB. EDSCB increased only their detection of bare explosives. In contrast, screeners with less experience (tenure automated decision provided better human-machine detection performance than on-screen alarm resolution and no automation. This came at the cost of slightly higher false alarm rates on the human-machine system level, which would still be acceptable from an operational point of view. Results indicate that a wide-scale implementation of EDSCB would increase the detection of explosives in passenger bags and automated decision instead of automation as diagnostic aid with on screen alarm resolution should be considered. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  11. High-Content Electrophysiological Analysis of Human Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes (hPSC-CMs).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kong, Chi-Wing; Geng, Lin; Li, Ronald A

    2018-01-01

    Considerable interest has been raised to develop human pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (hPSC-CMs) as a model for drug discovery and cardiotoxicity screening. High-content electrophysiological analysis of currents generated by transmembrane cell surface ion channels has been pursued to complement such emerging applications. Here we describe practical procedures and considerations for accomplishing successful assays of hPSC-CMs using an automated planar patch-clamp system.

  12. Adaptive platform for fluorescence microscopy-based high-content screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geisbauer, Matthias; Röder, Thorsten; Chen, Yang; Knoll, Alois; Uhl, Rainer

    2010-04-01

    Fluorescence microscopy has become a widely used tool for the study of medically relevant intra- and intercellular processes. Extracting meaningful information out of a bulk of acquired images is usually performed during a separate post-processing task. Thus capturing raw data results in an unnecessary huge number of images, whereas usually only a few images really show the particular information that is searched for. Here we propose a novel automated high-content microscope system, which enables experiments to be carried out with only a minimum of human interaction. It facilitates a huge speed-increase for cell biology research and its applications compared to the widely performed workflows. Our fluorescence microscopy system can automatically execute application-dependent data processing algorithms during the actual experiment. They are used for image contrast enhancement, cell segmentation and/or cell property evaluation. On-the-fly retrieved information is used to reduce data and concomitantly control the experiment process in real-time. Resulting in a closed loop of perception and action the system can greatly decrease the amount of stored data on one hand and increases the relative valuable data content on the other hand. We demonstrate our approach by addressing the problem of automatically finding cells with a particular combination of labeled receptors and then selectively stimulate them with antagonists or agonists. The results are then compared against the results of traditional, static systems.

  13. Automated Slide Scanning and Segmentation in Fluorescently-labeled Tissues Using a Widefield High-content Analysis System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poon, Candice C; Ebacher, Vincent; Liu, Katherine; Yong, Voon Wee; Kelly, John James Patrick

    2018-05-03

    Automated slide scanning and segmentation of fluorescently-labeled tissues is the most efficient way to analyze whole slides or large tissue sections. Unfortunately, many researchers spend large amounts of time and resources developing and optimizing workflows that are only relevant to their own experiments. In this article, we describe a protocol that can be used by those with access to a widefield high-content analysis system (WHCAS) to image any slide-mounted tissue, with options for customization within pre-built modules found in the associated software. Not originally intended for slide scanning, the steps detailed in this article make it possible to acquire slide scanning images in the WHCAS which can be imported into the associated software. In this example, the automated segmentation of brain tumor slides is demonstrated, but the automated segmentation of any fluorescently-labeled nuclear or cytoplasmic marker is possible. Furthermore, there are a variety of other quantitative software modules including assays for protein localization/translocation, cellular proliferation/viability/apoptosis, and angiogenesis that can be run. This technique will save researchers time and effort and create an automated protocol for slide analysis.

  14. Confocal nanoscanning, bead picking (CONA): PickoScreen microscopes for automated and quantitative screening of one-bead one-compound libraries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hintersteiner, Martin; Buehler, Christof; Uhl, Volker; Schmied, Mario; Müller, Jürgen; Kottig, Karsten; Auer, Manfred

    2009-01-01

    Solid phase combinatorial chemistry provides fast and cost-effective access to large bead based libraries with compound numbers easily exceeding tens of thousands of compounds. Incubating one-bead one-compound library beads with fluorescently labeled target proteins and identifying and isolating the beads which contain a bound target protein, potentially represents one of the most powerful generic primary high throughput screening formats. On-bead screening (OBS) based on this detection principle can be carried out with limited automation. Often hit bead detection, i.e. recognizing beads with a fluorescently labeled protein bound to the compound on the bead, relies on eye-inspection under a wide-field microscope. Using low resolution detection techniques, the identification of hit beads and their ranking is limited by a low fluorescence signal intensity and varying levels of the library beads' autofluorescence. To exploit the full potential of an OBS process, reliable methods for both automated quantitative detection of hit beads and their subsequent isolation are needed. In a joint collaborative effort with Evotec Technologies (now Perkin-Elmer Cellular Technologies Germany GmbH), we have built two confocal bead scanner and picker platforms PS02 and a high-speed variant PS04 dedicated to automated high resolution OBS. The PS0X instruments combine fully automated confocal large area scanning of a bead monolayer at the bottom of standard MTP plates with semiautomated isolation of individual hit beads via hydraulic-driven picker capillaries. The quantification of fluorescence intensities with high spatial resolution in the equatorial plane of each bead allows for a reliable discrimination between entirely bright autofluorescent beads and real hit beads which exhibit an increased fluorescence signal at the outer few micrometers of the bead. The achieved screening speed of up to 200,000 bead assayed in less than 7 h and the picking time of approximately 1 bead

  15. Assessment of automated disease detection in diabetic retinopathy screening using two-field photography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goatman, Keith; Charnley, Amanda; Webster, Laura; Nussey, Stephen

    2011-01-01

    To assess the performance of automated disease detection in diabetic retinopathy screening using two field mydriatic photography. Images from 8,271 sequential patient screening episodes from a South London diabetic retinopathy screening service were processed by the Medalytix iGrading™ automated grading system. For each screening episode macular-centred and disc-centred images of both eyes were acquired and independently graded according to the English national grading scheme. Where discrepancies were found between the automated result and original manual grade, internal and external arbitration was used to determine the final study grades. Two versions of the software were used: one that detected microaneurysms alone, and one that detected blot haemorrhages and exudates in addition to microaneurysms. Results for each version were calculated once using both fields and once using the macula-centred field alone. Of the 8,271 episodes, 346 (4.2%) were considered unassessable. Referable disease was detected in 587 episodes (7.1%). The sensitivity of the automated system for detecting unassessable images ranged from 97.4% to 99.1% depending on configuration. The sensitivity of the automated system for referable episodes ranged from 98.3% to 99.3%. All the episodes that included proliferative or pre-proliferative retinopathy were detected by the automated system regardless of configuration (192/192, 95% confidence interval 98.0% to 100%). If implemented as the first step in grading, the automated system would have reduced the manual grading effort by between 2,183 and 3,147 patient episodes (26.4% to 38.1%). Automated grading can safely reduce the workload of manual grading using two field, mydriatic photography in a routine screening service.

  16. A fully automated primary screening system for the discovery of therapeutic antibodies directly from B cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tickle, Simon; Howells, Louise; O'Dowd, Victoria; Starkie, Dale; Whale, Kevin; Saunders, Mark; Lee, David; Lightwood, Daniel

    2015-04-01

    For a therapeutic antibody to succeed, it must meet a range of potency, stability, and specificity criteria. Many of these characteristics are conferred by the amino acid sequence of the heavy and light chain variable regions and, for this reason, can be screened for during antibody selection. However, it is important to consider that antibodies satisfying all these criteria may be of low frequency in an immunized animal; for this reason, it is essential to have a mechanism that allows for efficient sampling of the immune repertoire. UCB's core antibody discovery platform combines high-throughput B cell culture screening and the identification and isolation of single, antigen-specific IgG-secreting B cells through a proprietary technique called the "fluorescent foci" method. Using state-of-the-art automation to facilitate primary screening, extremely efficient interrogation of the natural antibody repertoire is made possible; more than 1 billion immune B cells can now be screened to provide a useful starting point from which to identify the rare therapeutic antibody. This article will describe the design, construction, and commissioning of a bespoke automated screening platform and two examples of how it was used to screen for antibodies against two targets. © 2014 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  17. Automated docking screens: a feasibility study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irwin, John J; Shoichet, Brian K; Mysinger, Michael M; Huang, Niu; Colizzi, Francesco; Wassam, Pascal; Cao, Yiqun

    2009-09-24

    Molecular docking is the most practical approach to leverage protein structure for ligand discovery, but the technique retains important liabilities that make it challenging to deploy on a large scale. We have therefore created an expert system, DOCK Blaster, to investigate the feasibility of full automation. The method requires a PDB code, sometimes with a ligand structure, and from that alone can launch a full screen of large libraries. A critical feature is self-assessment, which estimates the anticipated reliability of the automated screening results using pose fidelity and enrichment. Against common benchmarks, DOCK Blaster recapitulates the crystal ligand pose within 2 A rmsd 50-60% of the time; inferior to an expert, but respectrable. Half the time the ligand also ranked among the top 5% of 100 physically matched decoys chosen on the fly. Further tests were undertaken culminating in a study of 7755 eligible PDB structures. In 1398 cases, the redocked ligand ranked in the top 5% of 100 property-matched decoys while also posing within 2 A rmsd, suggesting that unsupervised prospective docking is viable. DOCK Blaster is available at http://blaster.docking.org .

  18. Characterization of SPAD Array for Multifocal High-Content Screening Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony Tsikouras

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Current instruments used to detect specific protein-protein interactions in live cells for applications in high-content screening (HCS are limited by the time required to measure the lifetime. Here, a 32 × 1 single-photon avalanche diode (SPAD array was explored as a detector for fluorescence lifetime imaging (FLIM in HCS. Device parameters and characterization results were interpreted in the context of the application to determine if the SPAD array could satisfy the requirements of HCS-FLIM. Fluorescence lifetime measurements were performed using a known fluorescence standard; and the recovered fluorescence lifetime matched literature reported values. The design of a theoretical 32 × 32 SPAD array was also considered as a detector for a multi-point confocal scanning microscope.

  19. 3D high-content screening for the identification of compounds that target cells in dormant tumor spheroid regions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wenzel, Carsten; Riefke, Björn; Gründemann, Stephan; Krebs, Alice; Christian, Sven; Prinz, Florian; Osterland, Marc; Golfier, Sven; Räse, Sebastian [Bayer Pharma AG, Global Drug Discovery, Muellerstrasse 178, 13353 Berlin (Germany); Ansari, Nariman [Physical Biology Group, Buchmann Institute for Molecular Life Sciences (BMLS), Goethe University Frankfurt (Germany); Esner, Milan; Bickle, Marc [Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics, High-Throughput Technology Development Studio (TDS), Dresden (Germany); Pampaloni, Francesco; Mattheyer, Christian; Stelzer, Ernst H. [Physical Biology Group, Buchmann Institute for Molecular Life Sciences (BMLS), Goethe University Frankfurt (Germany); Parczyk, Karsten; Prechtl, Stefan [Bayer Pharma AG, Global Drug Discovery, Muellerstrasse 178, 13353 Berlin (Germany); Steigemann, Patrick, E-mail: Patrick.Steigemann@bayer.com [Bayer Pharma AG, Global Drug Discovery, Muellerstrasse 178, 13353 Berlin (Germany)

    2014-04-15

    Cancer cells in poorly vascularized tumor regions need to adapt to an unfavorable metabolic microenvironment. As distance from supplying blood vessels increases, oxygen and nutrient concentrations decrease and cancer cells react by stopping cell cycle progression and becoming dormant. As cytostatic drugs mainly target proliferating cells, cancer cell dormancy is considered as a major resistance mechanism to this class of anti-cancer drugs. Therefore, substances that target cancer cells in poorly vascularized tumor regions have the potential to enhance cytostatic-based chemotherapy of solid tumors. With three-dimensional growth conditions, multicellular tumor spheroids (MCTS) reproduce several parameters of the tumor microenvironment, including oxygen and nutrient gradients as well as the development of dormant tumor regions. We here report the setup of a 3D cell culture compatible high-content screening system and the identification of nine substances from two commercially available drug libraries that specifically target cells in inner MCTS core regions, while cells in outer MCTS regions or in 2D cell culture remain unaffected. We elucidated the mode of action of the identified compounds as inhibitors of the respiratory chain and show that induction of cell death in inner MCTS core regions critically depends on extracellular glucose concentrations. Finally, combinational treatment with cytostatics showed increased induction of cell death in MCTS. The data presented here shows for the first time a high-content based screening setup on 3D tumor spheroids for the identification of substances that specifically induce cell death in inner tumor spheroid core regions. This validates the approach to use 3D cell culture screening systems to identify substances that would not be detectable by 2D based screening in otherwise similar culture conditions. - Highlights: • Establishment of a novel method for 3D cell culture based high-content screening. • First reported high-content

  20. 3D high-content screening for the identification of compounds that target cells in dormant tumor spheroid regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wenzel, Carsten; Riefke, Björn; Gründemann, Stephan; Krebs, Alice; Christian, Sven; Prinz, Florian; Osterland, Marc; Golfier, Sven; Räse, Sebastian; Ansari, Nariman; Esner, Milan; Bickle, Marc; Pampaloni, Francesco; Mattheyer, Christian; Stelzer, Ernst H.; Parczyk, Karsten; Prechtl, Stefan; Steigemann, Patrick

    2014-01-01

    Cancer cells in poorly vascularized tumor regions need to adapt to an unfavorable metabolic microenvironment. As distance from supplying blood vessels increases, oxygen and nutrient concentrations decrease and cancer cells react by stopping cell cycle progression and becoming dormant. As cytostatic drugs mainly target proliferating cells, cancer cell dormancy is considered as a major resistance mechanism to this class of anti-cancer drugs. Therefore, substances that target cancer cells in poorly vascularized tumor regions have the potential to enhance cytostatic-based chemotherapy of solid tumors. With three-dimensional growth conditions, multicellular tumor spheroids (MCTS) reproduce several parameters of the tumor microenvironment, including oxygen and nutrient gradients as well as the development of dormant tumor regions. We here report the setup of a 3D cell culture compatible high-content screening system and the identification of nine substances from two commercially available drug libraries that specifically target cells in inner MCTS core regions, while cells in outer MCTS regions or in 2D cell culture remain unaffected. We elucidated the mode of action of the identified compounds as inhibitors of the respiratory chain and show that induction of cell death in inner MCTS core regions critically depends on extracellular glucose concentrations. Finally, combinational treatment with cytostatics showed increased induction of cell death in MCTS. The data presented here shows for the first time a high-content based screening setup on 3D tumor spheroids for the identification of substances that specifically induce cell death in inner tumor spheroid core regions. This validates the approach to use 3D cell culture screening systems to identify substances that would not be detectable by 2D based screening in otherwise similar culture conditions. - Highlights: • Establishment of a novel method for 3D cell culture based high-content screening. • First reported high-content

  1. Neonatal hearing screening of high-risk infants using automated auditory brainstem response: a retrospective analysis of referral rates.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    McGurgan, I J

    2013-10-07

    The past decade has seen the widespread introduction of universal neonatal hearing screening (UNHS) programmes worldwide. Regrettably, such a programme is only now in the process of nationwide implementation in the Republic of Ireland and has been largely restricted to one screening modality for initial testing; namely transient evoked otoacoustic emissions (TEOAE). The aim of this study is to analyse the effects of employing a different screening protocol which utilises an alternative initial test, automated auditory brainstem response (AABR), on referral rates to specialist audiology services.

  2. A High-Content Live-Cell Viability Assay and Its Validation on a Diverse 12K Compound Screen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiaravalli, Jeanne; Glickman, J Fraser

    2017-08-01

    We have developed a new high-content cytotoxicity assay using live cells, called "ImageTOX." We used a high-throughput fluorescence microscope system, image segmentation software, and the combination of Hoechst 33342 and SYTO 17 to simultaneously score the relative size and the intensity of the nuclei, the nuclear membrane permeability, and the cell number in a 384-well microplate format. We then performed a screen of 12,668 diverse compounds and compared the results to a standard cytotoxicity assay. The ImageTOX assay identified similar sets of compounds to the standard cytotoxicity assay, while identifying more compounds having adverse effects on cell structure, earlier in treatment time. The ImageTOX assay uses inexpensive commercially available reagents and facilitates the use of live cells in toxicity screens. Furthermore, we show that we can measure the kinetic profile of compound toxicity in a high-content, high-throughput format, following the same set of cells over an extended period of time.

  3. BioSig3D: High Content Screening of Three-Dimensional Cell Culture Models.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cemal Cagatay Bilgin

    Full Text Available BioSig3D is a computational platform for high-content screening of three-dimensional (3D cell culture models that are imaged in full 3D volume. It provides an end-to-end solution for designing high content screening assays, based on colony organization that is derived from segmentation of nuclei in each colony. BioSig3D also enables visualization of raw and processed 3D volumetric data for quality control, and integrates advanced bioinformatics analysis. The system consists of multiple computational and annotation modules that are coupled together with a strong use of controlled vocabularies to reduce ambiguities between different users. It is a web-based system that allows users to: design an experiment by defining experimental variables, upload a large set of volumetric images into the system, analyze and visualize the dataset, and either display computed indices as a heatmap, or phenotypic subtypes for heterogeneity analysis, or download computed indices for statistical analysis or integrative biology. BioSig3D has been used to profile baseline colony formations with two experiments: (i morphogenesis of a panel of human mammary epithelial cell lines (HMEC, and (ii heterogeneity in colony formation using an immortalized non-transformed cell line. These experiments reveal intrinsic growth properties of well-characterized cell lines that are routinely used for biological studies. BioSig3D is being released with seed datasets and video-based documentation.

  4. A High Throughput, 384-Well, Semi-Automated, Hepatocyte Intrinsic Clearance Assay for Screening New Molecular Entities in Drug Discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heinle, Lance; Peterkin, Vincent; de Morais, Sonia M; Jenkins, Gary J; Badagnani, Ilaria

    2015-01-01

    A high throughput, semi-automated clearance screening assay in hepatocytes was developed allowing a scientist to generate data for 96 compounds in one week. The 384-well format assay utilizes a Thermo Multidrop Combi and an optimized LC-MS/MS method. The previously reported LCMS/ MS method reduced the analytical run time by 3-fold, down to 1.2 min injection-to-injection. The Multidrop was able to deliver hepatocytes to 384-well plates with minimal viability loss. Comparison of results from the new 384-well and historical 24-well assays yielded a correlation of 0.95. In addition, results obtained for 25 marketed drugs with various metabolism pathways had a correlation of 0.75 when compared with literature values. Precision was maintained in the new format as 8 compounds tested in ≥39 independent experiments had coefficients of variation ≤21%. The ability to predict in vivo clearances using the new stability assay format was also investigated using 22 marketed drugs and 26 AbbVie compounds. Correction of intrinsic clearance values with binding to hepatocytes (in vitro data) and plasma (in vivo data) resulted in a higher in vitro to in vivo correlation when comparing 22 marketed compounds in human (0.80 vs 0.35) and 26 AbbVie Discovery compounds in rat (0.56 vs 0.17), demonstrating the importance of correcting for binding in clearance studies. This newly developed high throughput, semi-automated clearance assay allows for rapid screening of Discovery compounds to enable Structure Activity Relationship (SAR) analysis based on high quality hepatocyte stability data in sufficient quantity and quality to drive the next round of compound synthesis.

  5. Automated tool for virtual screening and pharmacology-based pathway prediction and analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sugandh Kumar

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The virtual screening is an effective tool for the lead identification in drug discovery. However, there are limited numbers of crystal structures available as compared to the number of biological sequences which makes (Structure Based Drug Discovery SBDD a difficult choice. The current tool is an attempt to automate the protein structure modelling and automatic virtual screening followed by pharmacology-based prediction and analysis. Starting from sequence(s, this tool automates protein structure modelling, binding site identification, automated docking, ligand preparation, post docking analysis and identification of hits in the biological pathways that can be modulated by a group of ligands. This automation helps in the characterization of ligands selectivity and action of ligands on a complex biological molecular network as well as on individual receptor. The judicial combination of the ligands binding different receptors can be used to inhibit selective biological pathways in a disease. This tool also allows the user to systemically investigate network-dependent effects of a drug or drug candidate.

  6. Development and Application of High-Content Biological Screening for Modulators of NET Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ilaria J. Chicca

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs are DNA-based antimicrobial web-like structures whose release is predominantly mediated by reactive oxygen species (ROS; their purpose is to combat infections. However, unbalanced NET production and clearance is involved in tissue injury, circulation of auto-antibodies and development of several chronic diseases. Currently, there is lack of agreement regarding the high-throughput methods available for NET investigation. This study, therefore, aimed to develop and optimize a high-content analysis (HCA approach, which can be applied for the assay of NET production and for the screening of compounds involved in the modulation of NET release. A suitable paraformaldehyde fixation protocol was established to enable HCA of neutrophils and NETs. Bespoke and in-built bioinformatics algorithms were validated by comparison with standard low-throughput approaches for application in HCA of NETs. Subsequently, the optimized protocol was applied to high-content screening (HCS of a pharmaceutically derived compound library to identify modulators of NETosis. Of 56 compounds assessed, 8 were identified from HCS for further characterization of their effects on NET formation as being either inducers, inhibitors or biphasic modulators. The effects of these compounds on naïve neutrophils were evaluated by using specific assays for the induction of ROS and NET production, while their modulatory activity was validated in phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate-stimulated neutrophils. Results indicated the involvement of glutathione reductase, Src family kinases, molecular-target-of-Rapamycin, and mitogen-activated-protein-kinase pathways in NET release. The compounds and pathways identified may provide targets for novel therapeutic approaches for treating NET-associated pathologies.

  7. Anti-cancer agents in Saudi Arabian herbals revealed by automated high-content imaging

    KAUST Repository

    Hajjar, Dina

    2017-06-13

    Natural products have been used for medical applications since ancient times. Commonly, natural products are structurally complex chemical compounds that efficiently interact with their biological targets, making them useful drug candidates in cancer therapy. Here, we used cell-based phenotypic profiling and image-based high-content screening to study the mode of action and potential cellular targets of plants historically used in Saudi Arabia\\'s traditional medicine. We compared the cytological profiles of fractions taken from Juniperus phoenicea (Arar), Anastatica hierochuntica (Kaff Maryam), and Citrullus colocynthis (Hanzal) with a set of reference compounds with established modes of action. Cluster analyses of the cytological profiles of the tested compounds suggested that these plants contain possible topoisomerase inhibitors that could be effective in cancer treatment. Using histone H2AX phosphorylation as a marker for DNA damage, we discovered that some of the compounds induced double-strand DNA breaks. Furthermore, chemical analysis of the active fraction isolated from Juniperus phoenicea revealed possible anti-cancer compounds. Our results demonstrate the usefulness of cell-based phenotypic screening of natural products to reveal their biological activities.

  8. High-throughput screening of ionic conductivity in polymer membranes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zapata, Pedro; Basak, Pratyay; Carson Meredith, J.

    2009-01-01

    Combinatorial and high-throughput techniques have been successfully used for efficient and rapid property screening in multiple fields. The use of these techniques can be an advantageous new approach to assay ionic conductivity and accelerate the development of novel materials in research areas such as fuel cells. A high-throughput ionic conductivity (HTC) apparatus is described and applied to screening candidate polymer electrolyte membranes for fuel cell applications. The device uses a miniature four-point probe for rapid, automated point-to-point AC electrochemical impedance measurements in both liquid and humid air environments. The conductivity of Nafion 112 HTC validation standards was within 1.8% of the manufacturer's specification. HTC screening of 40 novel Kynar poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF)/acrylic polyelectrolyte (PE) membranes focused on varying the Kynar type (5x) and PE composition (8x) using reduced sample sizes. Two factors were found to be significant in determining the proton conducting capacity: (1) Kynar PVDF series: membranes containing a particular Kynar PVDF type exhibited statistically identical mean conductivity as other membranes containing different Kynar PVDF types that belong to the same series or family. (2) Maximum effective amount of polyelectrolyte: increments in polyelectrolyte content from 55 wt% to 60 wt% showed no statistically significant effect in increasing conductivity. In fact, some membranes experienced a reduction in conductivity.

  9. High-throughput screening of cellulase F mutants from multiplexed plasmid sets using an automated plate assay on a functional proteomic robotic workcell

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qureshi Nasib

    2006-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The field of plasmid-based functional proteomics requires the rapid assay of proteins expressed from plasmid libraries. Automation is essential since large sets of mutant open reading frames are being cloned for evaluation. To date no integrated automated platform is available to carry out the entire process including production of plasmid libraries, expression of cloned genes, and functional testing of expressed proteins. Results We used a functional proteomic assay in a multiplexed setting on an integrated plasmid-based robotic workcell for high-throughput screening of mutants of cellulase F, an endoglucanase from the anaerobic fungus Orpinomyces PC-2. This allowed us to identify plasmids containing optimized clones expressing mutants with improved activity at lower pH. A plasmid library of mutagenized clones of the celF gene with targeted variations in the last four codons was constructed by site-directed PCR mutagenesis and transformed into Escherichia coli. A robotic picker integrated into the workcell was used to inoculate medium in a 96-well deep well plate, combining the transformants into a multiplexed set in each well, and the plate was incubated on the workcell. Plasmids were prepared from the multiplexed culture on the liquid handler component of the workcell and used for in vitro transcription/translation. The multiplexed expressed recombinant proteins were screened for improved activity and stability in an azo-carboxymethylcellulose plate assay. The multiplexed wells containing mutants with improved activity were identified and linked back to the corresponding multiplexed cultures stored in glycerol. Spread plates were prepared from the glycerol stocks and the workcell was used to pick single colonies from the spread plates, prepare plasmid, produce recombinant protein, and assay for activity. The screening assay and subsequent deconvolution of the multiplexed wells resulted in identification of improved Cel

  10. A Novel High Content Imaging-Based Screen Identifies the Anti-Helminthic Niclosamide as an Inhibitor of Lysosome Anterograde Trafficking and Prostate Cancer Cell Invasion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magdalena L Circu

    Full Text Available Lysosome trafficking plays a significant role in tumor invasion, a key event for the development of metastasis. Previous studies from our laboratory have demonstrated that the anterograde (outward movement of lysosomes to the cell surface in response to certain tumor microenvironment stimulus, such as hepatocyte growth factor (HGF or acidic extracellular pH (pHe, increases cathepsin B secretion and tumor cell invasion. Anterograde lysosome trafficking depends on sodium-proton exchanger activity and can be reversed by blocking these ion pumps with Troglitazone or EIPA. Since these drugs cannot be advanced into the clinic due to toxicity, we have designed a high-content assay to discover drugs that block peripheral lysosome trafficking with the goal of identifying novel drugs that inhibit tumor cell invasion. An automated high-content imaging system (Cellomics was used to measure the position of lysosomes relative to the nucleus. Among a total of 2210 repurposed and natural product drugs screened, 18 "hits" were identified. One of the compounds identified as an anterograde lysosome trafficking inhibitor was niclosamide, a marketed human anti-helminthic drug. Further studies revealed that niclosamide blocked acidic pHe, HGF, and epidermal growth factor (EGF-induced anterograde lysosome redistribution, protease secretion, motility, and invasion of DU145 castrate resistant prostate cancer cells at clinically relevant concentrations. In an effort to identify the mechanism by which niclosamide prevented anterograde lysosome movement, we found that this drug exhibited no significant effect on the level of ATP, microtubules or actin filaments, and had minimal effect on the PI3K and MAPK pathways. Niclosamide collapsed intralysosomal pH without disruption of the lysosome membrane, while bafilomycin, an agent that impairs lysosome acidification, was also found to induce JLA in our model. Taken together, these data suggest that niclosamide promotes

  11. Automation-assisted cervical cancer screening in manual liquid-based cytology with hematoxylin and eosin staining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ling; Kong, Hui; Ting Chin, Chien; Liu, Shaoxiong; Fan, Xinmin; Wang, Tianfu; Chen, Siping

    2014-03-01

    Current automation-assisted technologies for screening cervical cancer mainly rely on automated liquid-based cytology slides with proprietary stain. This is not a cost-efficient approach to be utilized in developing countries. In this article, we propose the first automation-assisted system to screen cervical cancer in manual liquid-based cytology (MLBC) slides with hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) stain, which is inexpensive and more applicable in developing countries. This system consists of three main modules: image acquisition, cell segmentation, and cell classification. First, an autofocusing scheme is proposed to find the global maximum of the focus curve by iteratively comparing image qualities of specific locations. On the autofocused images, the multiway graph cut (GC) is performed globally on the a* channel enhanced image to obtain cytoplasm segmentation. The nuclei, especially abnormal nuclei, are robustly segmented by using GC adaptively and locally. Two concave-based approaches are integrated to split the touching nuclei. To classify the segmented cells, features are selected and preprocessed to improve the sensitivity, and contextual and cytoplasm information are introduced to improve the specificity. Experiments on 26 consecutive image stacks demonstrated that the dynamic autofocusing accuracy was 2.06 μm. On 21 cervical cell images with nonideal imaging condition and pathology, our segmentation method achieved a 93% accuracy for cytoplasm, and a 87.3% F-measure for nuclei, both outperformed state of the art works in terms of accuracy. Additional clinical trials showed that both the sensitivity (88.1%) and the specificity (100%) of our system are satisfyingly high. These results proved the feasibility of automation-assisted cervical cancer screening in MLBC slides with H&E stain, which is highly desirable in community health centers and small hospitals. © 2013 International Society for Advancement of Cytometry.

  12. OptoDyCE: Automated system for high-throughput all-optical dynamic cardiac electrophysiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klimas, Aleksandra; Yu, Jinzhu; Ambrosi, Christina M.; Williams, John C.; Bien, Harold; Entcheva, Emilia

    2016-02-01

    In the last two decades, market were due to cardiac toxicity, where unintended interactions with ion channels disrupt the heart's normal electrical function. Consequently, all new drugs must undergo preclinical testing for cardiac liability, adding to an already expensive and lengthy process. Recognition that proarrhythmic effects often result from drug action on multiple ion channels demonstrates a need for integrative and comprehensive measurements. Additionally, patient-specific therapies relying on emerging technologies employing stem-cell derived cardiomyocytes (e.g. induced pluripotent stem-cell-derived cardiomyocytes, iPSC-CMs) require better screening methods to become practical. However, a high-throughput, cost-effective approach for cellular cardiac electrophysiology has not been feasible. Optical techniques for manipulation and recording provide a contactless means of dynamic, high-throughput testing of cells and tissues. Here, we consider the requirements for all-optical electrophysiology for drug testing, and we implement and validate OptoDyCE, a fully automated system for all-optical cardiac electrophysiology. We demonstrate the high-throughput capabilities using multicellular samples in 96-well format by combining optogenetic actuation with simultaneous fast high-resolution optical sensing of voltage or intracellular calcium. The system can also be implemented using iPSC-CMs and other cell-types by delivery of optogenetic drivers, or through the modular use of dedicated light-sensitive somatic cells in conjunction with non-modified cells. OptoDyCE provides a truly modular and dynamic screening system, capable of fully-automated acquisition of high-content information integral for improved discovery and development of new drugs and biologics, as well as providing a means of better understanding of electrical disturbances in the heart.

  13. Automated Cervical Screening and Triage, Based on HPV Testing and Computer-Interpreted Cytology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Kai; Hyun, Noorie; Fetterman, Barbara; Lorey, Thomas; Raine-Bennett, Tina R; Zhang, Han; Stamps, Robin E; Poitras, Nancy E; Wheeler, William; Befano, Brian; Gage, Julia C; Castle, Philip E; Wentzensen, Nicolas; Schiffman, Mark

    2018-04-11

    State-of-the-art cervical cancer prevention includes human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination among adolescents and screening/treatment of cervical precancer (CIN3/AIS and, less strictly, CIN2) among adults. HPV testing provides sensitive detection of precancer but, to reduce overtreatment, secondary "triage" is needed to predict women at highest risk. Those with the highest-risk HPV types or abnormal cytology are commonly referred to colposcopy; however, expert cytology services are critically lacking in many regions. To permit completely automatable cervical screening/triage, we designed and validated a novel triage method, a cytologic risk score algorithm based on computer-scanned liquid-based slide features (FocalPoint, BD, Burlington, NC). We compared it with abnormal cytology in predicting precancer among 1839 women testing HPV positive (HC2, Qiagen, Germantown, MD) in 2010 at Kaiser Permanente Northern California (KPNC). Precancer outcomes were ascertained by record linkage. As additional validation, we compared the algorithm prospectively with cytology results among 243 807 women screened at KPNC (2016-2017). All statistical tests were two-sided. Among HPV-positive women, the algorithm matched the triage performance of abnormal cytology. Combined with HPV16/18/45 typing (Onclarity, BD, Sparks, MD), the automatable strategy referred 91.7% of HPV-positive CIN3/AIS cases to immediate colposcopy while deferring 38.4% of all HPV-positive women to one-year retesting (compared with 89.1% and 37.4%, respectively, for typing and cytology triage). In the 2016-2017 validation, the predicted risk scores strongly correlated with cytology (P < .001). High-quality cervical screening and triage performance is achievable using this completely automated approach. Automated technology could permit extension of high-quality cervical screening/triage coverage to currently underserved regions.

  14. Automated detection of exudates for diabetic retinopathy screening

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fleming, Alan D; Philip, Sam; Goatman, Keith A; Williams, Graeme J; Olson, John A; Sharp, Peter F

    2007-01-01

    Automated image analysis is being widely sought to reduce the workload required for grading images resulting from diabetic retinopathy screening programmes. The recognition of exudates in retinal images is an important goal for automated analysis since these are one of the indicators that the disease has progressed to a stage requiring referral to an ophthalmologist. Candidate exudates were detected using a multi-scale morphological process. Based on local properties, the likelihoods of a candidate being a member of classes exudate, drusen or background were determined. This leads to a likelihood of the image containing exudates which can be thresholded to create a binary decision. Compared to a clinical reference standard, images containing exudates were detected with sensitivity 95.0% and specificity 84.6% in a test set of 13 219 images of which 300 contained exudates. Depending on requirements, this method could form part of an automated system to detect images showing either any diabetic retinopathy or referable diabetic retinopathy

  15. Automated detection of exudates for diabetic retinopathy screening

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fleming, Alan D [Biomedical Physics, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, AB25 2ZD (United Kingdom); Philip, Sam [Diabetes Retinal Screening Service, David Anderson Building, Foresterhill Road, Aberdeen, AB25 2ZP (United Kingdom); Goatman, Keith A [Biomedical Physics, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, AB25 2ZD (United Kingdom); Williams, Graeme J [Diabetes Retinal Screening Service, David Anderson Building, Foresterhill Road, Aberdeen, AB25 2ZP (United Kingdom); Olson, John A [Diabetes Retinal Screening Service, David Anderson Building, Foresterhill Road, Aberdeen, AB25 2ZP (United Kingdom); Sharp, Peter F [Biomedical Physics, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, AB25 2ZD (United Kingdom)

    2007-12-21

    Automated image analysis is being widely sought to reduce the workload required for grading images resulting from diabetic retinopathy screening programmes. The recognition of exudates in retinal images is an important goal for automated analysis since these are one of the indicators that the disease has progressed to a stage requiring referral to an ophthalmologist. Candidate exudates were detected using a multi-scale morphological process. Based on local properties, the likelihoods of a candidate being a member of classes exudate, drusen or background were determined. This leads to a likelihood of the image containing exudates which can be thresholded to create a binary decision. Compared to a clinical reference standard, images containing exudates were detected with sensitivity 95.0% and specificity 84.6% in a test set of 13 219 images of which 300 contained exudates. Depending on requirements, this method could form part of an automated system to detect images showing either any diabetic retinopathy or referable diabetic retinopathy.

  16. Automated detection of exudates for diabetic retinopathy screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleming, Alan D.; Philip, Sam; Goatman, Keith A.; Williams, Graeme J.; Olson, John A.; Sharp, Peter F.

    2007-12-01

    Automated image analysis is being widely sought to reduce the workload required for grading images resulting from diabetic retinopathy screening programmes. The recognition of exudates in retinal images is an important goal for automated analysis since these are one of the indicators that the disease has progressed to a stage requiring referral to an ophthalmologist. Candidate exudates were detected using a multi-scale morphological process. Based on local properties, the likelihoods of a candidate being a member of classes exudate, drusen or background were determined. This leads to a likelihood of the image containing exudates which can be thresholded to create a binary decision. Compared to a clinical reference standard, images containing exudates were detected with sensitivity 95.0% and specificity 84.6% in a test set of 13 219 images of which 300 contained exudates. Depending on requirements, this method could form part of an automated system to detect images showing either any diabetic retinopathy or referable diabetic retinopathy.

  17. High content screening for G protein-coupled receptors using cell-based protein translocation assays

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Grånäs, Charlotta; Lundholt, Betina Kerstin; Heydorn, Arne

    2005-01-01

    G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) have been one of the most productive classes of drug targets for several decades, and new technologies for GPCR-based discovery promise to keep this field active for years to come. While molecular screens for GPCR receptor agonist- and antagonist-based drugs...... will continue to be valuable discovery tools, the most exciting developments in the field involve cell-based assays for GPCR function. Some cell-based discovery strategies, such as the use of beta-arrestin as a surrogate marker for GPCR function, have already been reduced to practice, and have been used...... as valuable discovery tools for several years. The application of high content cell-based screening to GPCR discovery has opened up additional possibilities, such as direct tracking of GPCRs, G proteins and other signaling pathway components using intracellular translocation assays. These assays provide...

  18. Cost‐effectiveness of implementing automated grading within the national screening programme for diabetic retinopathy in Scotland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scotland, G S; McNamee, P; Philip, S; Fleming, A D; Goatman, K A; Prescott, G J; Fonseca, S; Sharp, P F; Olson, J A

    2007-01-01

    Aims National screening programmes for diabetic retinopathy using digital photography and multi‐level manual grading systems are currently being implemented in the UK. Here, we assess the cost‐effectiveness of replacing first level manual grading in the National Screening Programme in Scotland with an automated system developed to assess image quality and detect the presence of any retinopathy. Methods A decision tree model was developed and populated using sensitivity/specificity and cost data based on a study of 6722 patients in the Grampian region. Costs to the NHS, and the number of appropriate screening outcomes and true referable cases detected in 1 year were assessed. Results For the diabetic population of Scotland (approximately 160 000), with prevalence of referable retinopathy at 4% (6400 true cases), the automated strategy would be expected to identify 5560 cases (86.9%) and the manual strategy 5610 cases (87.7%). However, the automated system led to savings in grading and quality assurance costs to the NHS of £201 600 per year. The additional cost per additional referable case detected (manual vs automated) totalled £4088 and the additional cost per additional appropriate screening outcome (manual vs automated) was £1990. Conclusions Given that automated grading is less costly and of similar effectiveness, it is likely to be considered a cost‐effective alternative to manual grading. PMID:17585001

  19. Cost-effectiveness of implementing automated grading within the national screening programme for diabetic retinopathy in Scotland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scotland, G S; McNamee, P; Philip, S; Fleming, A D; Goatman, K A; Prescott, G J; Fonseca, S; Sharp, P F; Olson, J A

    2007-11-01

    National screening programmes for diabetic retinopathy using digital photography and multi-level manual grading systems are currently being implemented in the UK. Here, we assess the cost-effectiveness of replacing first level manual grading in the National Screening Programme in Scotland with an automated system developed to assess image quality and detect the presence of any retinopathy. A decision tree model was developed and populated using sensitivity/specificity and cost data based on a study of 6722 patients in the Grampian region. Costs to the NHS, and the number of appropriate screening outcomes and true referable cases detected in 1 year were assessed. For the diabetic population of Scotland (approximately 160,000), with prevalence of referable retinopathy at 4% (6400 true cases), the automated strategy would be expected to identify 5560 cases (86.9%) and the manual strategy 5610 cases (87.7%). However, the automated system led to savings in grading and quality assurance costs to the NHS of 201,600 pounds per year. The additional cost per additional referable case detected (manual vs automated) totalled 4088 pounds and the additional cost per additional appropriate screening outcome (manual vs automated) was 1990 pounds. Given that automated grading is less costly and of similar effectiveness, it is likely to be considered a cost-effective alternative to manual grading.

  20. Automated assay for screening the enzymatic release of reducing sugars from micronized biomass

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asther Marcel

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background To reduce the production cost of bioethanol obtained from fermentation of the sugars provided by degradation of lignocellulosic biomass (i.e., second generation bioethanol, it is necessary to screen for new enzymes endowed with more efficient biomass degrading properties. This demands the set-up of high-throughput screening methods. Several methods have been devised all using microplates in the industrial SBS format. Although this size reduction and standardization has greatly improved the screening process, the published methods comprise one or more manual steps that seriously decrease throughput. Therefore, we worked to devise a screening method devoid of any manual steps. Results We describe a fully automated assay for measuring the amount of reducing sugars released by biomass-degrading enzymes from wheat-straw and spruce. The method comprises two independent and automated steps. The first step is the making of "substrate plates". It consists of filling 96-well microplates with slurry suspensions of micronized substrate which are then stored frozen until use. The second step is an enzymatic activity assay. After thawing, the substrate plates are supplemented by the robot with cell-wall degrading enzymes where necessary, and the whole process from addition of enzymes to quantification of released sugars is autonomously performed by the robot. We describe how critical parameters (amount of substrate, amount of enzyme, incubation duration and temperature were selected to fit with our specific use. The ability of this automated small-scale assay to discriminate among different enzymatic activities was validated using a set of commercial enzymes. Conclusions Using an automatic microplate sealer solved three main problems generally encountered during the set-up of methods for measuring the sugar-releasing activity of plant cell wall-degrading enzymes: throughput, automation, and evaporation losses. In its present set-up, the

  1. Production of Audiovisual Content in Ultra High Definition (UHD: Immersive Experience for Multimedia Viewing Screen TV and Smartphones

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Javier MONTEMAYOR RUIZ

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available This research analyzes the production of audiovisual content in ultra high definition (UHD as a catalyst factor of the new narratological discourse implanted in the media to the expressive, interactive and immersive possibilities obtained with the use of UHD 4K and 8K for viewing on large screen and, especially, in the 'fourth screen'. Through indepth interviews with experts from the academic and professional media world it is to establish an overview of the convergence of technology and industry of content creation, where the products are evolving to as for the entertainment needs of digital natives and adapting to new forms of consumption across multiple platforms, facing, in this way, a new business model for both industry technology industry and for the entire audiovisual sector.

  2. Cytotoxicity evaluation of nanoclays in human epithelial cell line A549 using high content screening and real-time impedance analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Verma, Navin K. [Trinity College Dublin, Department of Clinical Medicine, Institute of Molecular Medicine (Ireland); Moore, Edward; Blau, Werner [Trinity College Dublin, School of Physics (Ireland); Volkov, Yuri [Trinity College Dublin, Department of Clinical Medicine, Institute of Molecular Medicine (Ireland); Ramesh Babu, P., E-mail: babup@tcd.ie [Trinity College Dublin, Centre for Research on Adaptive Nanostructures and Nanodevices (Ireland)

    2012-09-15

    Continuously expanding use of products containing nanoclays for wide range of applications have raised public concerns about health and safety. Although the products containing nanoclays may not be toxic, it is possible that nanomaterials may come in contact with humans during handling, manufacture, or disposal, and cause adverse health impact. This necessitates biocompatibility evaluation of the commonly used nanoclays. Here, we investigated the cytotoxic effects of platelet (Bentone MA, ME-100, Cloisite Na{sup +}, Nanomer PGV, and Delite LVF) and tubular (Halloysite, and Halloysite MP1) type nanoclays on cultured human lung epithelial cells A549. For the first time with this aim, we employed a cell-based automated high content screening in combination with real-time impedance sensing. We demonstrate varying degree of dose- and time-dependent cytotoxic effects of both nanoclay types. Overall, platelet structured nanoclays were more cytotoxic than tubular type. A low but significant level of cytotoxicity was observed at 25 {mu}g/mL of the platelet-type nanoclays. A549 cells exposed to high concentration (250 {mu}g/mL) of tubular structured nanoclays showed inhibited cell growth. Confocal microscopy indicated intracellular accumulation of nanoclays with perinuclear localization. Results indicate a potential hazard of nanoclay-containing products at significantly higher concentrations, which warrant their further biohazard assessment on the actual exposure in humans.

  3. Cytotoxicity evaluation of nanoclays in human epithelial cell line A549 using high content screening and real-time impedance analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Verma, Navin K.; Moore, Edward; Blau, Werner; Volkov, Yuri; Ramesh Babu, P.

    2012-01-01

    Continuously expanding use of products containing nanoclays for wide range of applications have raised public concerns about health and safety. Although the products containing nanoclays may not be toxic, it is possible that nanomaterials may come in contact with humans during handling, manufacture, or disposal, and cause adverse health impact. This necessitates biocompatibility evaluation of the commonly used nanoclays. Here, we investigated the cytotoxic effects of platelet (Bentone MA, ME-100, Cloisite Na + , Nanomer PGV, and Delite LVF) and tubular (Halloysite, and Halloysite MP1) type nanoclays on cultured human lung epithelial cells A549. For the first time with this aim, we employed a cell-based automated high content screening in combination with real-time impedance sensing. We demonstrate varying degree of dose- and time-dependent cytotoxic effects of both nanoclay types. Overall, platelet structured nanoclays were more cytotoxic than tubular type. A low but significant level of cytotoxicity was observed at 25 μg/mL of the platelet-type nanoclays. A549 cells exposed to high concentration (250 μg/mL) of tubular structured nanoclays showed inhibited cell growth. Confocal microscopy indicated intracellular accumulation of nanoclays with perinuclear localization. Results indicate a potential hazard of nanoclay-containing products at significantly higher concentrations, which warrant their further biohazard assessment on the actual exposure in humans.

  4. High-Throughput Screening Using iPSC-Derived Neuronal Progenitors to Identify Compounds Counteracting Epigenetic Gene Silencing in Fragile X Syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufmann, Markus; Schuffenhauer, Ansgar; Fruh, Isabelle; Klein, Jessica; Thiemeyer, Anke; Rigo, Pierre; Gomez-Mancilla, Baltazar; Heidinger-Millot, Valerie; Bouwmeester, Tewis; Schopfer, Ulrich; Mueller, Matthias; Fodor, Barna D; Cobos-Correa, Amanda

    2015-10-01

    Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common form of inherited mental retardation, and it is caused in most of cases by epigenetic silencing of the Fmr1 gene. Today, no specific therapy exists for FXS, and current treatments are only directed to improve behavioral symptoms. Neuronal progenitors derived from FXS patient induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) represent a unique model to study the disease and develop assays for large-scale drug discovery screens since they conserve the Fmr1 gene silenced within the disease context. We have established a high-content imaging assay to run a large-scale phenotypic screen aimed to identify compounds that reactivate the silenced Fmr1 gene. A set of 50,000 compounds was tested, including modulators of several epigenetic targets. We describe an integrated drug discovery model comprising iPSC generation, culture scale-up, and quality control and screening with a very sensitive high-content imaging assay assisted by single-cell image analysis and multiparametric data analysis based on machine learning algorithms. The screening identified several compounds that induced a weak expression of fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP) and thus sets the basis for further large-scale screens to find candidate drugs or targets tackling the underlying mechanism of FXS with potential for therapeutic intervention. © 2015 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  5. CellProfiler and KNIME: open source tools for high content screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stöter, Martin; Niederlein, Antje; Barsacchi, Rico; Meyenhofer, Felix; Brandl, Holger; Bickle, Marc

    2013-01-01

    High content screening (HCS) has established itself in the world of the pharmaceutical industry as an essential tool for drug discovery and drug development. HCS is currently starting to enter the academic world and might become a widely used technology. Given the diversity of problems tackled in academic research, HCS could experience some profound changes in the future, mainly with more imaging modalities and smart microscopes being developed. One of the limitations in the establishment of HCS in academia is flexibility and cost. Flexibility is important to be able to adapt the HCS setup to accommodate the multiple different assays typical of academia. Many cost factors cannot be avoided, but the costs of the software packages necessary to analyze large datasets can be reduced by using Open Source software. We present and discuss the Open Source software CellProfiler for image analysis and KNIME for data analysis and data mining that provide software solutions which increase flexibility and keep costs low.

  6. A Novel Tool for High-Throughput Screening of Granulocyte-Specific Antibodies Using the Automated Flow Cytometric Granulocyte Immunofluorescence Test (Flow-GIFT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xuan Duc Nguyen

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Transfusion-related acute lung injury (TRALI is a severe complication related with blood transfusion. TRALI has usually been associated with antibodies against leukocytes. The flow cytometric granulocyte immunofluorescence test (Flow-GIFT has been introduced for routine use when investigating patients and healthy blood donors. Here we describe a novel tool in the automation of the Flow-GIFT that enables a rapid screening of blood donations. We analyzed 440 sera from healthy female blood donors for the presence of granulocyte antibodies. As positive controls, 12 sera with known antibodies against anti-HNA-1a, -b, -2a; and -3a were additionally investigated. Whole-blood samples from HNA-typed donors were collected and the test cells isolated using cell sedimentation in a Ficoll density gradient. Subsequently, leukocytes were incubated with the respective serum and binding of antibodies was detected using FITC-conjugated antihuman antibody. 7-AAD was used to exclude dead cells. Pipetting steps were automated using the Biomek NXp Multichannel Automation Workstation. All samples were prepared in the 96-deep well plates and analyzed by flow cytometry. The standard granulocyte immunofluorescence test (GIFT and granulocyte agglutination test (GAT were also performed as reference methods. Sixteen sera were positive in the automated Flow-GIFT, while five of these sera were negative in the standard GIFT (anti—HNA 3a, n = 3; anti—HNA-1b, n = 1 and GAT (anti—HNA-2a, n = 1. The automated Flow-GIFT was able to detect all granulocyte antibodies, which could be only detected in GIFT in combination with GAT. In serial dilution tests, the automated Flow-GIFT detected the antibodies at higher dilutions than the reference methods GIFT and GAT. The Flow-GIFT proved to be feasible for automation. This novel high-throughput system allows an effective antigranulocyte antibody detection in a large donor population in order to prevent TRALI due to transfusion of

  7. A novel tool for high-throughput screening of granulocyte-specific antibodies using the automated flow cytometric granulocyte immunofluorescence test (Flow-GIFT).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Xuan Duc; Dengler, Thomas; Schulz-Linkholt, Monika; Klüter, Harald

    2011-02-03

    Transfusion-related acute lung injury (TRALI) is a severe complication related with blood transfusion. TRALI has usually been associated with antibodies against leukocytes. The flow cytometric granulocyte immunofluorescence test (Flow-GIFT) has been introduced for routine use when investigating patients and healthy blood donors. Here we describe a novel tool in the automation of the Flow-GIFT that enables a rapid screening of blood donations. We analyzed 440 sera from healthy female blood donors for the presence of granulocyte antibodies. As positive controls, 12 sera with known antibodies against anti-HNA-1a, -b, -2a; and -3a were additionally investigated. Whole-blood samples from HNA-typed donors were collected and the test cells isolated using cell sedimentation in a Ficoll density gradient. Subsequently, leukocytes were incubated with the respective serum and binding of antibodies was detected using FITC-conjugated antihuman antibody. 7-AAD was used to exclude dead cells. Pipetting steps were automated using the Biomek NXp Multichannel Automation Workstation. All samples were prepared in the 96-deep well plates and analyzed by flow cytometry. The standard granulocyte immunofluorescence test (GIFT) and granulocyte agglutination test (GAT) were also performed as reference methods. Sixteen sera were positive in the automated Flow-GIFT, while five of these sera were negative in the standard GIFT (anti-HNA 3a, n = 3; anti-HNA-1b, n = 1) and GAT (anti-HNA-2a, n = 1). The automated Flow-GIFT was able to detect all granulocyte antibodies, which could be only detected in GIFT in combination with GAT. In serial dilution tests, the automated Flow-GIFT detected the antibodies at higher dilutions than the reference methods GIFT and GAT. The Flow-GIFT proved to be feasible for automation. This novel high-throughput system allows an effective antigranulocyte antibody detection in a large donor population in order to prevent TRALI due to transfusion of blood products.

  8. A study of whether automated Diabetic Retinopathy Image Assessment could replace manual grading steps in the English National Screening Programme.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapetanakis, Venediktos V; Rudnicka, Alicja R; Liew, Gerald; Owen, Christopher G; Lee, Aaron; Louw, Vern; Bolter, Louis; Anderson, John; Egan, Catherine; Salas-Vega, Sebastian; Rudisill, Caroline; Taylor, Paul; Tufail, Adnan

    2015-09-01

    Diabetic retinopathy screening in England involves labour intensive manual grading of digital retinal images. We present the plan for an observational retrospective study of whether automated systems could replace one or more steps of human grading. Patients aged 12 or older who attended the Diabetes Eye Screening programme, Homerton University Hospital (London) between 1 June 2012 and 4 November 2013 had macular and disc-centred retinal images taken. All screening episodes were manually graded and will additionally be graded by three automated systems. Each system will process all screening episodes, and screening performance (sensitivity, false positive rate, likelihood ratios) and diagnostic accuracy (95% confidence intervals of screening performance measures) will be quantified. A sub-set of gradings will be validated by an approved Reading Centre. Additional analyses will explore the effect of altering thresholds for disease detection within each automated system on screening performance. 2,782/20,258 diabetes patients were referred to ophthalmologists for further examination. Prevalence of maculopathy (M1), pre-proliferative retinopathy (R2), and proliferative retinopathy (R3) were 7.9%, 3.1% and 1.2%, respectively; 4749 (23%) patients were diagnosed with background retinopathy (R1); 1.5% were considered ungradable by human graders. Retinopathy prevalence was similar to other English diabetic screening programmes, so findings should be generalizable. The study population size will allow the detection of differences in screening performance between the human and automated grading systems as small as 2%. The project will compare performance and economic costs of manual versus automated systems. © The Author(s) 2015.

  9. A Fully Automated High-Throughput Zebrafish Behavioral Ototoxicity Assay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd, Douglas W; Philip, Rohit C; Niihori, Maki; Ringle, Ryan A; Coyle, Kelsey R; Zehri, Sobia F; Zabala, Leanne; Mudery, Jordan A; Francis, Ross H; Rodriguez, Jeffrey J; Jacob, Abraham

    2017-08-01

    Zebrafish animal models lend themselves to behavioral assays that can facilitate rapid screening of ototoxic, otoprotective, and otoregenerative drugs. Structurally similar to human inner ear hair cells, the mechanosensory hair cells on their lateral line allow the zebrafish to sense water flow and orient head-to-current in a behavior called rheotaxis. This rheotaxis behavior deteriorates in a dose-dependent manner with increased exposure to the ototoxin cisplatin, thereby establishing itself as an excellent biomarker for anatomic damage to lateral line hair cells. Building on work by our group and others, we have built a new, fully automated high-throughput behavioral assay system that uses automated image analysis techniques to quantify rheotaxis behavior. This novel system consists of a custom-designed swimming apparatus and imaging system consisting of network-controlled Raspberry Pi microcomputers capturing infrared video. Automated analysis techniques detect individual zebrafish, compute their orientation, and quantify the rheotaxis behavior of a zebrafish test population, producing a powerful, high-throughput behavioral assay. Using our fully automated biological assay to test a standardized ototoxic dose of cisplatin against varying doses of compounds that protect or regenerate hair cells may facilitate rapid translation of candidate drugs into preclinical mammalian models of hearing loss.

  10. Affinity-based screening of combinatorial libraries using automated, serial-column chromatography

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Evans, D.M.; Williams, K.P.; McGuinness, B. [PerSeptive Biosystems, Framingham, MA (United States)] [and others

    1996-04-01

    The authors have developed an automated serial chromatographic technique for screening a library of compounds based upon their relative affinity for a target molecule. A {open_quotes}target{close_quotes} column containing the immobilized target molecule is set in tandem with a reversed-phase column. A combinatorial peptide library is injected onto the target column. The target-bound peptides are eluted from the first column and transferred automatically to the reversed-phase column. The target-specific peptide peaks from the reversed-phase column are identified and sequenced. Using a monoclonal antibody (3E-7) against {beta}-endorphin as a target, we selected a single peptide with sequence YGGFL from approximately 5800 peptides present in a combinatorial library. We demonstrated the applicability of the technology towards selection of peptides with predetermined affinity for bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS, endotoxin). We expect that this technology will have broad applications for high throughput screening of chemical libraries or natural product extracts. 21 refs., 4 figs.

  11. A NOVEL PIPELINE FOR DRUG DISCOVERY IN NEUROPSYCHIATRIC DISORDERS USING HIGH-CONTENT SINGLE-CELL SCREENING OF SIGNALLING NETWORK RESPONSES EX VIVO

    OpenAIRE

    Lago Cooke, Santiago Guillermo

    2016-01-01

    The current work entails the development of a novel high content platform for the measurement of kinetic ligand responses across cell signalling networks at the single-cell level in distinct PBMC subtypes ex vivo. Using automated sample preparation, fluorescent cellular barcoding and flow cytometry the platform is capable of detecting 21, 840 parallel cell signalling responses in each PBMC sample. We apply this platform to characterize the effects of neuropsychiatric treatments and CNS ligand...

  12. High-throughput micro-plate HCL-vanillin assay for screening tannin content in sorghum grain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorghum contains tannin which is a phenolic compound that offers health promoting antioxidant capacity. The HCl-vanillin assay is a common and time consuming method for determining tannin content, but is not efficient for screening large sample sets as seen in association mapping panels or breeding ...

  13. High-throughput screening for bioactive components from traditional Chinese medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Yanhui; Zhang, Zhiyun; Zhang, Meng; Mais, Dale E; Wang, Ming-Wei

    2010-12-01

    Throughout the centuries, traditional Chinese medicine has been a rich resource in the development of new drugs. Modern drug discovery, which relies increasingly on automated high throughput screening and quick hit-to-lead development, however, is confronted with the challenges of the chemical complexity associated with natural products. New technologies for biological screening as well as library building are in great demand in order to meet the requirements. Here we review the developments in these techniques under the perspective of their applicability in natural product drug discovery. Methods in library building, component characterizing, biological evaluation, and other screening methods including NMR and X-ray diffraction are discussed.

  14. Screening of siRNA nanoparticles for delivery to airway epithelial cells using high-content analysis

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Hibbitts, Alan

    2011-08-01

    Aims: Delivery of siRNA to the lungs via inhalation offers a unique opportunity to develop a new treatment paradigm for a range of respiratory conditions. However, progress has been greatly hindered by safety and delivery issues. This study developed a high-throughput method for screening novel nanotechnologies for pulmonary siRNA delivery. Methodology: Following physicochemical analysis, the ability of PEI–PEG–siRNA nanoparticles to facilitate siRNA delivery was determined using high-content analysis (HCA) in Calu-3 cells. Results obtained from HCA were validated using confocal microscopy. Finally, cytotoxicity of the PEI–PEG–siRNA particles was analyzed by HCA using the Cellomics® multiparameter cytotoxicity assay. Conclusion: PEI–PEG–siRNA nanoparticles facilitated increased siRNA uptake and luciferase knockdown in Calu-3 cells compared with PEI–siRNA.

  15. Automated and Clinical Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System Density Measures Predict Risk for Screen-Detected and Interval Cancers: A Case-Control Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerlikowske, Karla; Scott, Christopher G; Mahmoudzadeh, Amir P; Ma, Lin; Winham, Stacey; Jensen, Matthew R; Wu, Fang Fang; Malkov, Serghei; Pankratz, V Shane; Cummings, Steven R; Shepherd, John A; Brandt, Kathleen R; Miglioretti, Diana L; Vachon, Celine M

    2018-06-05

    In 30 states, women who have had screening mammography are informed of their breast density on the basis of Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-RADS) density categories estimated subjectively by radiologists. Variation in these clinical categories across and within radiologists has led to discussion about whether automated BI-RADS density should be reported instead. To determine whether breast cancer risk and detection are similar for automated and clinical BI-RADS density measures. Case-control. San Francisco Mammography Registry and Mayo Clinic. 1609 women with screen-detected cancer, 351 women with interval invasive cancer, and 4409 matched control participants. Automated and clinical BI-RADS density assessed on digital mammography at 2 time points from September 2006 to October 2014, interval and screen-detected breast cancer risk, and mammography sensitivity. Of women whose breast density was categorized by automated BI-RADS more than 6 months to 5 years before diagnosis, those with extremely dense breasts had a 5.65-fold higher interval cancer risk (95% CI, 3.33 to 9.60) and a 1.43-fold higher screen-detected risk (CI, 1.14 to 1.79) than those with scattered fibroglandular densities. Associations of interval and screen-detected cancer with clinical BI-RADS density were similar to those with automated BI-RADS density, regardless of whether density was measured more than 6 months to less than 2 years or 2 to 5 years before diagnosis. Automated and clinical BI-RADS density measures had similar discriminatory accuracy, which was higher for interval than screen-detected cancer (c-statistics: 0.70 vs. 0.62 [P automated and clinical BI-RADS categories: fatty, 93% versus 92%; scattered fibroglandular densities, 90% versus 90%; heterogeneously dense, 82% versus 78%; and extremely dense, 63% versus 64%, respectively. Neither automated nor clinical BI-RADS density was assessed on tomosynthesis, an emerging breast screening method. Automated and clinical BI

  16. Reverse Phase Protein Arrays for High-throughput Toxicity Screening

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Marlene Lemvig; Block, Ines; List, Markus

    High-throughput screening is extensively applied for identification of drug targets and drug discovery and recently it found entry into toxicity testing. Reverse phase protein arrays (RPPAs) are used widespread for quantification of protein markers. We reasoned that RPPAs also can be utilized...... beneficially in automated high-throughput toxicity testing. An advantage of using RPPAs is that, in addition to the baseline toxicity readout, they allow testing of multiple markers of toxicity, such as inflammatory responses, which do not necessarily cumulate in cell death. We used transfection of si......RNAs with known killing effects as a model system to demonstrate that RPPA-based protein quantification can serve as substitute readout of cell viability, hereby reliably reflecting toxicity. In terms of automation, cell exposure, protein harvest, serial dilution and sample reformatting were performed using...

  17. The Effect of Information Analysis Automation Display Content on Human Judgment Performance in Noisy Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bass, Ellen J.; Baumgart, Leigh A.; Shepley, Kathryn Klein

    2014-01-01

    Displaying both the strategy that information analysis automation employs to makes its judgments and variability in the task environment may improve human judgment performance, especially in cases where this variability impacts the judgment performance of the information analysis automation. This work investigated the contribution of providing either information analysis automation strategy information, task environment information, or both, on human judgment performance in a domain where noisy sensor data are used by both the human and the information analysis automation to make judgments. In a simplified air traffic conflict prediction experiment, 32 participants made probability of horizontal conflict judgments under different display content conditions. After being exposed to the information analysis automation, judgment achievement significantly improved for all participants as compared to judgments without any of the automation's information. Participants provided with additional display content pertaining to cue variability in the task environment had significantly higher aided judgment achievement compared to those provided with only the automation's judgment of a probability of conflict. When designing information analysis automation for environments where the automation's judgment achievement is impacted by noisy environmental data, it may be beneficial to show additional task environment information to the human judge in order to improve judgment performance. PMID:24847184

  18. The Effect of Information Analysis Automation Display Content on Human Judgment Performance in Noisy Environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bass, Ellen J; Baumgart, Leigh A; Shepley, Kathryn Klein

    2013-03-01

    Displaying both the strategy that information analysis automation employs to makes its judgments and variability in the task environment may improve human judgment performance, especially in cases where this variability impacts the judgment performance of the information analysis automation. This work investigated the contribution of providing either information analysis automation strategy information, task environment information, or both, on human judgment performance in a domain where noisy sensor data are used by both the human and the information analysis automation to make judgments. In a simplified air traffic conflict prediction experiment, 32 participants made probability of horizontal conflict judgments under different display content conditions. After being exposed to the information analysis automation, judgment achievement significantly improved for all participants as compared to judgments without any of the automation's information. Participants provided with additional display content pertaining to cue variability in the task environment had significantly higher aided judgment achievement compared to those provided with only the automation's judgment of a probability of conflict. When designing information analysis automation for environments where the automation's judgment achievement is impacted by noisy environmental data, it may be beneficial to show additional task environment information to the human judge in order to improve judgment performance.

  19. Advanced Cell Classifier: User-Friendly Machine-Learning-Based Software for Discovering Phenotypes in High-Content Imaging Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piccinini, Filippo; Balassa, Tamas; Szkalisity, Abel; Molnar, Csaba; Paavolainen, Lassi; Kujala, Kaisa; Buzas, Krisztina; Sarazova, Marie; Pietiainen, Vilja; Kutay, Ulrike; Smith, Kevin; Horvath, Peter

    2017-06-28

    High-content, imaging-based screens now routinely generate data on a scale that precludes manual verification and interrogation. Software applying machine learning has become an essential tool to automate analysis, but these methods require annotated examples to learn from. Efficiently exploring large datasets to find relevant examples remains a challenging bottleneck. Here, we present Advanced Cell Classifier (ACC), a graphical software package for phenotypic analysis that addresses these difficulties. ACC applies machine-learning and image-analysis methods to high-content data generated by large-scale, cell-based experiments. It features methods to mine microscopic image data, discover new phenotypes, and improve recognition performance. We demonstrate that these features substantially expedite the training process, successfully uncover rare phenotypes, and improve the accuracy of the analysis. ACC is extensively documented, designed to be user-friendly for researchers without machine-learning expertise, and distributed as a free open-source tool at www.cellclassifier.org. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. High content image-based screening of a protease inhibitor library reveals compounds broadly active against Rift Valley fever virus and other highly pathogenic RNA viruses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajini Mudhasani

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available High content image-based screening was developed as an approach to test a protease inhibitor small molecule library for antiviral activity against Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV and to determine their mechanism of action. RVFV is the causative agent of severe disease of humans and animals throughout Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. Of the 849 compounds screened, 34 compounds exhibited ≥ 50% inhibition against RVFV. All of the hit compounds could be classified into 4 distinct groups based on their unique chemical backbone. Some of the compounds also showed broad antiviral activity against several highly pathogenic RNA viruses including Ebola, Marburg, Venezuela equine encephalitis, and Lassa viruses. Four hit compounds (C795-0925, D011-2120, F694-1532 and G202-0362, which were most active against RVFV and showed broad-spectrum antiviral activity, were selected for further evaluation for their cytotoxicity, dose response profile, and mode of action using classical virological methods and high-content imaging analysis. Time-of-addition assays in RVFV infections suggested that D011-2120 and G202-0362 targeted virus egress, while C795-0925 and F694-1532 inhibited virus replication. We showed that D011-2120 exhibited its antiviral effects by blocking microtubule polymerization, thereby disrupting the Golgi complex and inhibiting viral trafficking to the plasma membrane during virus egress. While G202-0362 also affected virus egress, it appears to do so by a different mechanism, namely by blocking virus budding from the trans Golgi. F694-1532 inhibited viral replication, but also appeared to inhibit overall cellular gene expression. However, G202-0362 and C795-0925 did not alter any of the morphological features that we examined and thus may prove to be good candidates for antiviral drug development. Overall this work demonstrates that high-content image analysis can be used to screen chemical libraries for new antivirals and to determine their

  1. Integrating high-content imaging and chemical genetics to probe host cellular pathways critical for Yersinia pestis infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Krishna P Kota

    Full Text Available The molecular machinery that regulates the entry and survival of Yersinia pestis in host macrophages is poorly understood. Here, we report the development of automated high-content imaging assays to quantitate the internalization of virulent Y. pestis CO92 by macrophages and the subsequent activation of host NF-κB. Implementation of these assays in a focused chemical screen identified kinase inhibitors that inhibited both of these processes. Rac-2-ethoxy-3 octadecanamido-1-propylphosphocholine (a protein Kinase C inhibitor, wortmannin (a PI3K inhibitor, and parthenolide (an IκB kinase inhibitor, inhibited pathogen-induced NF-κB activation and reduced bacterial entry and survival within macrophages. Parthenolide inhibited NF-κB activation in response to stimulation with Pam3CSK4 (a TLR2 agonist, E. coli LPS (a TLR4 agonist or Y. pestis infection, while the PI3K and PKC inhibitors were selective only for Y. pestis infection. Together, our results suggest that phagocytosis is the major stimulus for NF-κB activation in response to Y. pestis infection, and that Y. pestis entry into macrophages may involve the participation of protein kinases such as PI3K and PKC. More importantly, the automated image-based screening platform described here can be applied to the study of other bacteria in general and, in combination with chemical genetic screening, can be used to identify host cell functions facilitating the identification of novel antibacterial therapeutics.

  2. Phytochemical Screening, Polyphenolic Content and Alpha ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    traditionally in the management of diabetes mellitus and in the treatment of wounds and stomach ache. In this study, phytochemical screening, total phenolic contents and alpha-glucosidase ... Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases (Di Matteo and Esposito, 2003) as well as inflammation and problems caused by cell and ...

  3. AHCODA-DB: a data repository with web-based mining tools for the analysis of automated high-content mouse phenomics data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koopmans, Bastijn; Smit, August B; Verhage, Matthijs; Loos, Maarten

    2017-04-04

    Systematic, standardized and in-depth phenotyping and data analyses of rodent behaviour empowers gene-function studies, drug testing and therapy design. However, no data repositories are currently available for standardized quality control, data analysis and mining at the resolution of individual mice. Here, we present AHCODA-DB, a public data repository with standardized quality control and exclusion criteria aimed to enhance robustness of data, enabled with web-based mining tools for the analysis of individually and group-wise collected mouse phenotypic data. AHCODA-DB allows monitoring in vivo effects of compounds collected from conventional behavioural tests and from automated home-cage experiments assessing spontaneous behaviour, anxiety and cognition without human interference. AHCODA-DB includes such data from mutant mice (transgenics, knock-out, knock-in), (recombinant) inbred strains, and compound effects in wildtype mice and disease models. AHCODA-DB provides real time statistical analyses with single mouse resolution and versatile suite of data presentation tools. On March 9th, 2017 AHCODA-DB contained 650 k data points on 2419 parameters from 1563 mice. AHCODA-DB provides users with tools to systematically explore mouse behavioural data, both with positive and negative outcome, published and unpublished, across time and experiments with single mouse resolution. The standardized (automated) experimental settings and the large current dataset (1563 mice) in AHCODA-DB provide a unique framework for the interpretation of behavioural data and drug effects. The use of common ontologies allows data export to other databases such as the Mouse Phenome Database. Unbiased presentation of positive and negative data obtained under the highly standardized screening conditions increase cost efficiency of publicly funded mouse screening projects and help to reach consensus conclusions on drug responses and mouse behavioural phenotypes. The website is publicly

  4. Automated NMR fragment based screening identified a novel interface blocker to the LARG/RhoA complex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jia Gao

    Full Text Available The small GTPase cycles between the inactive GDP form and the activated GTP form, catalyzed by the upstream guanine exchange factors. The modulation of such process by small molecules has been proven to be a fruitful route for therapeutic intervention to prevent the over-activation of the small GTPase. The fragment based approach emerging in the past decade has demonstrated its paramount potential in the discovery of inhibitors targeting such novel and challenging protein-protein interactions. The details regarding the procedure of NMR fragment screening from scratch have been rarely disclosed comprehensively, thus restricts its wider applications. To achieve a consistent screening applicable to a number of targets, we developed a highly automated protocol to cover every aspect of NMR fragment screening as possible, including the construction of small but diverse libray, determination of the aqueous solubility by NMR, grouping compounds with mutual dispersity to a cocktail, and the automated processing and visualization of the ligand based screening spectra. We exemplified our streamlined screening in RhoA alone and the complex of the small GTPase RhoA and its upstream guanine exchange factor LARG. Two hits were confirmed from the primary screening in cocktail and secondary screening over individual hits for LARG/RhoA complex, while one of them was also identified from the screening for RhoA alone. HSQC titration of the two hits over RhoA and LARG alone, respectively, identified one compound binding to RhoA.GDP at a 0.11 mM affinity, and perturbed the residues at the switch II region of RhoA. This hit blocked the formation of the LARG/RhoA complex, validated by the native gel electrophoresis, and the titration of RhoA to ¹⁵N labeled LARG in the absence and presence the compound, respectively. It therefore provides us a starting point toward a more potent inhibitor to RhoA activation catalyzed by LARG.

  5. Inventory management and reagent supply for automated chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuzniar, E

    1999-08-01

    Developments in automated chemistry have kept pace with developments in HTS such that hundreds of thousands of new compounds can be rapidly synthesized in the belief that the greater the number and diversity of compounds that can be screened, the more successful HTS will be. The increasing use of automation for Multiple Parallel Synthesis (MPS) and the move to automated combinatorial library production is placing an overwhelming burden on the management of reagents. Although automation has improved the efficiency of the processes involved in compound synthesis, the bottleneck has shifted to ordering, collating and preparing reagents for automated chemistry resulting in loss of time, materials and momentum. Major efficiencies have already been made in the area of compound management for high throughput screening. Most of these efficiencies have been achieved with sophisticated library management systems using advanced engineering and data handling for the storage, tracking and retrieval of millions of compounds. The Automation Partnership has already provided many of the top pharmaceutical companies with modular automated storage, preparation and retrieval systems to manage compound libraries for high throughput screening. This article describes how these systems may be implemented to solve the specific problems of inventory management and reagent supply for automated chemistry.

  6. High-content live cell imaging with RNA probes: advancements in high-throughput antimalarial drug discovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cervantes Serena

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malaria, a major public health issue in developing nations, is responsible for more than one million deaths a year. The most lethal species, Plasmodium falciparum, causes up to 90% of fatalities. Drug resistant strains to common therapies have emerged worldwide and recent artemisinin-based combination therapy failures hasten the need for new antimalarial drugs. Discovering novel compounds to be used as antimalarials is expedited by the use of a high-throughput screen (HTS to detect parasite growth and proliferation. Fluorescent dyes that bind to DNA have replaced expensive traditional radioisotope incorporation for HTS growth assays, but do not give additional information regarding the parasite stage affected by the drug and a better indication of the drug's mode of action. Live cell imaging with RNA dyes, which correlates with cell growth and proliferation, has been limited by the availability of successful commercial dyes. Results After screening a library of newly synthesized stryrl dyes, we discovered three RNA binding dyes that provide morphological details of live parasites. Utilizing an inverted confocal imaging platform, live cell imaging of parasites increases parasite detection, improves the spatial and temporal resolution of the parasite under drug treatments, and can resolve morphological changes in individual cells. Conclusion This simple one-step technique is suitable for automation in a microplate format for novel antimalarial compound HTS. We have developed a new P. falciparum RNA high-content imaging growth inhibition assay that is robust with time and energy efficiency.

  7. Generation of orientation tools for automated zebrafish screening assays using desktop 3D printing

    OpenAIRE

    Wittbrodt, Jonas N.; Liebel, Urban; Gehrig, Jochen

    2014-01-01

    Background The zebrafish has been established as the main vertebrate model system for whole organism screening applications. However, the lack of consistent positioning of zebrafish embryos within wells of microtiter plates remains an obstacle for the comparative analysis of images acquired in automated screening assays. While technical solutions to the orientation problem exist, dissemination is often hindered by the lack of simple and inexpensive ways of distributing and duplicating tools. ...

  8. HT-COMET: a novel automated approach for high throughput assessment of human sperm chromatin quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albert, Océane; Reintsch, Wolfgang E.; Chan, Peter; Robaire, Bernard

    2016-01-01

    STUDY QUESTION Can we make the comet assay (single-cell gel electrophoresis) for human sperm a more accurate and informative high throughput assay? SUMMARY ANSWER We developed a standardized automated high throughput comet (HT-COMET) assay for human sperm that improves its accuracy and efficiency, and could be of prognostic value to patients in the fertility clinic. WHAT IS KNOWN ALREADY The comet assay involves the collection of data on sperm DNA damage at the level of the single cell, allowing the use of samples from severe oligozoospermic patients. However, this makes comet scoring a low throughput procedure that renders large cohort analyses tedious. Furthermore, the comet assay comes with an inherent vulnerability to variability. Our objective is to develop an automated high throughput comet assay for human sperm that will increase both its accuracy and efficiency. STUDY DESIGN, SIZE, DURATION The study comprised two distinct components: a HT-COMET technical optimization section based on control versus DNAse treatment analyses (n = 3–5), and a cross-sectional study on 123 men presenting to a reproductive center with sperm concentrations categorized as severe oligozoospermia, oligozoospermia or normozoospermia. PARTICIPANTS/MATERIALS, SETTING, METHODS Sperm chromatin quality was measured using the comet assay: on classic 2-well slides for software comparison; on 96-well slides for HT-COMET optimization; after exposure to various concentrations of a damage-inducing agent, DNAse, using HT-COMET; on 123 subjects with different sperm concentrations using HT-COMET. Data from the 123 subjects were correlated to classic semen quality parameters and plotted as single-cell data in individual DNA damage profiles. MAIN RESULTS AND THE ROLE OF CHANCE We have developed a standard automated HT-COMET procedure for human sperm. It includes automated scoring of comets by a fully integrated high content screening setup that compares well with the most commonly used semi

  9. ToxCast Workflow: High-throughput screening assay data processing, analysis and management (SOT)

    Science.gov (United States)

    US EPA’s ToxCast program is generating data in high-throughput screening (HTS) and high-content screening (HCS) assays for thousands of environmental chemicals, for use in developing predictive toxicity models. Currently the ToxCast screening program includes over 1800 unique c...

  10. Quantification of bacteria on abiotic surfaces by laser scanning cytometry: An automated approach to screen the antifouling properties of new surface coatings

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Regina, Viduthalai R.; Poulsen, Morten; Søhoel, Helmer

    2012-01-01

    Bacterial biofilms are a persistent source of contamination, and much effort invested in developing antifouling surfaces or coatings. A bottle-neck in developing such coatings is often the time-consuming task of screening and evaluating a large number of surface materials. An automated high...

  11. High-throughput microfluidic mixing and multiparametric cell sorting for bioactive compound screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Susan M; Curry, Mark S; Ransom, John T; Ballesteros, Juan A; Prossnitz, Eric R; Sklar, Larry A; Edwards, Bruce S

    2004-03-01

    HyperCyt, an automated sample handling system for flow cytometry that uses air bubbles to separate samples sequentially introduced from multiwell plates by an autosampler. In a previously documented HyperCyt configuration, air bubble separated compounds in one sample line and a continuous stream of cells in another are mixed in-line for serial flow cytometric cell response analysis. To expand capabilities for high-throughput bioactive compound screening, the authors investigated using this system configuration in combination with automated cell sorting. Peptide ligands were sampled from a 96-well plate, mixed in-line with fluo-4-loaded, formyl peptide receptor-transfected U937 cells, and screened at a rate of 3 peptide reactions per minute with approximately 10,000 cells analyzed per reaction. Cell Ca(2+) responses were detected to as little as 10(-11) M peptide with no detectable carryover between samples at up to 10(-7) M peptide. After expansion in culture, cells sort-purified from the 10% highest responders exhibited enhanced sensitivity and more sustained responses to peptide. Thus, a highly responsive cell subset was isolated under high-throughput mixing and sorting conditions in which response detection capability spanned a 1000-fold range of peptide concentration. With single-cell readout systems for protein expression libraries, this technology offers the promise of screening millions of discrete compound interactions per day.

  12. Development of a quantitative morphological assessment of toxicant-treated zebrafish larvae using brightfield imaging and high-content analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deal, Samantha; Wambaugh, John; Judson, Richard; Mosher, Shad; Radio, Nick; Houck, Keith; Padilla, Stephanie

    2016-09-01

    One of the rate-limiting procedures in a developmental zebrafish screen is the morphological assessment of each larva. Most researchers opt for a time-consuming, structured visual assessment by trained human observer(s). The present studies were designed to develop a more objective, accurate and rapid method for screening zebrafish for dysmorphology. Instead of the very detailed human assessment, we have developed the computational malformation index, which combines the use of high-content imaging with a very brief human visual assessment. Each larva was quickly assessed by a human observer (basic visual assessment), killed, fixed and assessed for dysmorphology with the Zebratox V4 BioApplication using the Cellomics® ArrayScan® V(TI) high-content image analysis platform. The basic visual assessment adds in-life parameters, and the high-content analysis assesses each individual larva for various features (total area, width, spine length, head-tail length, length-width ratio, perimeter-area ratio). In developing the computational malformation index, a training set of hundreds of embryos treated with hundreds of chemicals were visually assessed using the basic or detailed method. In the second phase, we assessed both the stability of these high-content measurements and its performance using a test set of zebrafish treated with a dose range of two reference chemicals (trans-retinoic acid or cadmium). We found the measures were stable for at least 1 week and comparison of these automated measures to detailed visual inspection of the larvae showed excellent congruence. Our computational malformation index provides an objective manner for rapid phenotypic brightfield assessment of individual larva in a developmental zebrafish assay. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  13. Automated assessment of patients' self-narratives for posttraumatic stress disorder screening using natural language processing and text mining

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    He, Qiwei; Veldkamp, Bernard P.; Glas, Cornelis A.W.; de Vries, Theo

    2017-01-01

    Patients’ narratives about traumatic experiences and symptoms are useful in clinical screening and diagnostic procedures. In this study, we presented an automated assessment system to screen patients for posttraumatic stress disorder via a natural language processing and text-mining approach. Four

  14. Cost-effectiveness analysis of the optimal threshold of an automated immunochemical test for colorectal cancer screening: performances of immunochemical colorectal cancer screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berchi, Célia; Guittet, Lydia; Bouvier, Véronique; Launoy, Guy

    2010-01-01

    Most industrialized countries, including France, have undertaken to generalize colorectal cancer screening using guaiac fecal occult blood tests (G-FOBT). However, recent researches demonstrate that immunochemical fecal occult blood tests (I-FOBT) are more effective than G-FOBT. Moreover, new generation I-FOBT benefits from a quantitative reading technique allowing the positivity threshold to be chosen, hence offering the best balance between effectiveness and cost. We aimed at comparing the cost and the clinical performance of one round of screening using I-FOBT at different positivity thresholds to those obtained with G-FOBT to determine the optimal cut-off for I-FOBT. Data were derived from an experiment conducted from June 2004 to December 2005 in Calvados (France) where 20,322 inhabitants aged 50-74 years performed both I-FOBT and G-FOBT. Clinical performance was assessed by the number of advanced tumors screened, including large adenomas and cancers. Costs were assessed by the French Social Security Board and included only direct costs. Screening using I-FOBT resulted in better health outcomes and lower costs than screening using G-FOBT for thresholds comprised between 75 and 93 ng/ml. I-FOBT at 55 ng/ml also offers a satisfactory alternative to G-FOBT, because it is 1.8-fold more effective than G-FOBT, without increasing the number of unnecessary colonoscopies, and at an extra cost of 2,519 euros per advanced tumor screened. The use of an automated I-FOBT at 75 ng/ml would guarantee more efficient screening than currently used G-FOBT. Health authorities in industrialized countries should consider the replacement of G-FOBT by an automated I-FOBT test in the near future.

  15. Enhanced versus automated urinalysis for screening of urinary tract infections in children in the emergency department.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah, Ami P; Cobb, Benjamin T; Lower, Darla R; Shaikh, Nader; Rasmussen, Jayne; Hoberman, Alejandro; Wald, Ellen R; Rosendorff, Adam; Hickey, Robert W

    2014-03-01

    Urinary tract infections (UTI) are the most common serious bacterial infection in febrile infants. Urinalysis (UA) is a screening test for preliminary diagnosis of UTI. UA can be performed manually or using automated techniques. We sought to compare manual versus automated UA for urine specimens obtained via catheterization in the pediatric emergency department. In this prospective study, we processed catheterized urine samples from infants with suspected UTI by both the manual method (enhanced UA) and the automated method. We defined a positive enhanced UA as ≥ 10 white blood cells per cubic millimeter and presence of any bacteria per 10 oil immersion fields on a Gram-stained smear. We defined a positive automated UA as ≥ 2 white blood cells per high-powered field and presence of any bacteria using the IRIS iQ200 ELITE. We defined a positive urine culture as growth of ≥ 50,000 colony-forming units per milliliter of a single uropathogen. We analyzed data using SPSS software. A total of 703 specimens were analyzed. Prevalence of UTI was 7%. For pyuria, the sensitivity and positive predictive value (PPV) of the enhanced UA in predicting positive urine culture were 83.6% and 52.5%, respectively; corresponding values for the automated UA were 79.5% and 37.5%, respectively. For bacteriuria, the sensitivity and PPV of a Gram-stained smear (enhanced UA) were 83.6% and 59.4%, respectively; corresponding values for the automated UA were 73.4%, and 26.2%, respectively. Using criteria of both pyuria and bacteriuria for the enhanced UA resulted in a sensitivity of 77.5% and a PPV of 84.4%; corresponding values for the automated UA were 63.2% and 51.6%, respectively. Combining automated pyuria (≥ 2 white blood cells/high-powered microscopic field) with a Gram-stained smear resulted in a sensitivity of 75.5% and a PPV of 84%. Automated UA is comparable with manual UA for detection of pyuria in young children with suspected UTI. Bacteriuria detected by automated UA is

  16. An open framework for automated chemical hazard assessment based on GreenScreen for Safer Chemicals: A proof of concept.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wehage, Kristopher; Chenhansa, Panan; Schoenung, Julie M

    2017-01-01

    GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals is a framework for comparative chemical hazard assessment. It is the first transparent, open and publicly accessible framework of its kind, allowing manufacturers and governmental agencies to make informed decisions about the chemicals and substances used in consumer products and buildings. In the GreenScreen® benchmarking process, chemical hazards are assessed and classified based on 18 hazard endpoints from up to 30 different sources. The result is a simple numerical benchmark score and accompanying assessment report that allows users to flag chemicals of concern and identify safer alternatives. Although the screening process is straightforward, aggregating and sorting hazard data is tedious, time-consuming, and prone to human error. In light of these challenges, the present work demonstrates the usage of automation to cull chemical hazard data from publicly available internet resources, assign metadata, and perform a GreenScreen® hazard assessment using the GreenScreen® "List Translator." The automated technique, written as a module in the Python programming language, generates GreenScreen® List Translation data for over 3000 chemicals in approximately 30 s. Discussion of the potential benefits and limitations of automated techniques is provided. By embedding the library into a web-based graphical user interface, the extensibility of the library is demonstrated. The accompanying source code is made available to the hazard assessment community. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2017;13:167-176. © 2016 SETAC. © 2016 SETAC.

  17. New Paradigm for Macromolecular Crystallography Experiments at SSRL: Automated Crystal Screening And Remote Data Collection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Soltis, S.M.; Cohen, A.E.; Deacon, A.; Eriksson, T.; Gonzalez, A.; McPhillips, S.; Chui, H.; Dunten, P.; Hollenbeck, M.; Mathews, I.; Miller, M.; Moorhead, P.; Phizackerley, R.P.; Smith, C.; Song, J.; Bedem, H. van dem; Ellis, P.; Kuhn, P.; McPhillips, T.; Sauter, N.; Sharp, K.

    2009-01-01

    Complete automation of the macromolecular crystallography experiment has been achieved at Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource (SSRL) through the combination of robust mechanized experimental hardware and a flexible control system with an intuitive user interface. These highly reliable systems have enabled crystallography experiments to be carried out from the researchers' home institutions and other remote locations while retaining complete control over even the most challenging systems. A breakthrough component of the system, the Stanford Auto-Mounter (SAM), has enabled the efficient mounting of cryocooled samples without human intervention. Taking advantage of this automation, researchers have successfully screened more than 200 000 samples to select the crystals with the best diffraction quality for data collection as well as to determine optimal crystallization and cryocooling conditions. These systems, which have been deployed on all SSRL macromolecular crystallography beamlines and several beamlines worldwide, are used by more than 80 research groups in remote locations, establishing a new paradigm for macromolecular crystallography experimentation.

  18. A High-Content Phenotypic Screen Reveals the Disruptive Potency of Quinacrine and 3′,4′-Dichlorobenzamil on the Digestive Vacuole of Plasmodium falciparum

    OpenAIRE

    Lee, Yan Quan; Goh, Amanda S. P.; Ch'ng, Jun Hong; Nosten, François H.; Preiser, Peter Rainer; Pervaiz, Shazib; Yadav, Sanjiv Kumar; Tan, Kevin S. W.

    2014-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum is the etiological agent of malignant malaria and has been shown to exhibit features resembling programmed cell death. This is triggered upon treatment with low micromolar doses of chloroquine or other lysosomotrophic compounds and is associated with leakage of the digestive vacuole contents. In order to exploit this cell death pathway, we developed a high-content screening method to select compounds that can disrupt the parasite vacuole, as measured by the leakage of in...

  19. Efficient high-throughput biological process characterization: Definitive screening design with the ambr250 bioreactor system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tai, Mitchell; Ly, Amanda; Leung, Inne; Nayar, Gautam

    2015-01-01

    The burgeoning pipeline for new biologic drugs has increased the need for high-throughput process characterization to efficiently use process development resources. Breakthroughs in highly automated and parallelized upstream process development have led to technologies such as the 250-mL automated mini bioreactor (ambr250™) system. Furthermore, developments in modern design of experiments (DoE) have promoted the use of definitive screening design (DSD) as an efficient method to combine factor screening and characterization. Here we utilize the 24-bioreactor ambr250™ system with 10-factor DSD to demonstrate a systematic experimental workflow to efficiently characterize an Escherichia coli (E. coli) fermentation process for recombinant protein production. The generated process model is further validated by laboratory-scale experiments and shows how the strategy is useful for quality by design (QbD) approaches to control strategies for late-stage characterization. © 2015 American Institute of Chemical Engineers.

  20. Machine Learning-Based Content Analysis: Automating the analysis of frames and agendas in political communication research

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Burscher, B.

    2016-01-01

    We used machine learning to study policy issues and frames in political messages. With regard to frames, we investigated the automation of two content-analytical tasks: frame coding and frame identification. We found that both tasks can be successfully automated by means of machine learning

  1. Readability, suitability, and health content assessment of web-based patient education materials on colorectal cancer screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, Chenlu; Champlin, Sara; Mackert, Michael; Lazard, Allison; Agrawal, Deepak

    2014-08-01

    Colorectal cancer (CRC) screening rates in the Unites States are still below target level. Web-based patient education materials are used by patients and providers to provide supplemental information on CRC screening. Low literacy levels and patient perceptions are significant barriers to screening. There are little data on the quality of these online materials from a health literacy standpoint or whether they address patients' perceptions. To evaluate the readability, suitability, and health content of web-based patient education materials on colon cancer screening. Descriptive study. Web-based patient materials. Twelve reputable and popular online patient education materials were evaluated. Readability was measured by using the Flesch-Kincaid Reading Grade Level, and suitability was determined by the Suitability Assessment of Materials, a scale that considers characteristics such as content, graphics, layout/typography, and learning stimulation. Health content was evaluated within the framework of the Health Belief Model, a behavioral model that relates patients' perceptions of susceptibility to disease, severity, and benefits and barriers to their medical decisions. Each material was scored independently by 3 reviewers. Flesch-Kincaid Reading Grade Level score, Suitability Assessment of Materials score, health content score. Readability for 10 of 12 materials surpassed the maximum recommended sixth-grade reading level. Five were 10th grade level and above. Only 1 of 12 materials received a superior suitability score; 3 materials received inadequate scores. Health content analysis revealed that only 50% of the resources discussed CRC risk in the general population and <25% specifically addressed patients at high risk, such as African Americans, smokers, patients with diabetes, and obese patients. For perceived barriers to screening, only 8.3% of resources discussed embarrassment, 25% discussed pain with colonoscopy, 25% addressed cost of colonoscopy, and none

  2. A Network and Visual Quality Aware N-Screen Content Recommender System Using Joint Matrix Factorization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farman Ullah

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available We propose a network and visual quality aware N-Screen content recommender system. N-Screen provides more ways than ever before to access multimedia content through multiple devices and heterogeneous access networks. The heterogeneity of devices and access networks present new questions of QoS (quality of service in the realm of user experience with content. We propose, a recommender system that ensures a better visual quality on user’s N-screen devices and the efficient utilization of available access network bandwidth with user preferences. The proposed system estimates the available bandwidth and visual quality on users N-Screen devices and integrates it with users preferences and contents genre information to personalize his N-Screen content. The objective is to recommend content that the user’s N-Screen device and access network are capable of displaying and streaming with the user preferences that have not been supported in existing systems. Furthermore, we suggest a joint matrix factorization approach to jointly factorize the users rating matrix with the users N-Screen device similarity and program genres similarity. Finally, the experimental results show that we also enhance the prediction and recommendation accuracy, sparsity, and cold start issues.

  3. A network and visual quality aware N-screen content recommender system using joint matrix factorization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ullah, Farman; Sarwar, Ghulam; Lee, Sungchang

    2014-01-01

    We propose a network and visual quality aware N-Screen content recommender system. N-Screen provides more ways than ever before to access multimedia content through multiple devices and heterogeneous access networks. The heterogeneity of devices and access networks present new questions of QoS (quality of service) in the realm of user experience with content. We propose, a recommender system that ensures a better visual quality on user's N-screen devices and the efficient utilization of available access network bandwidth with user preferences. The proposed system estimates the available bandwidth and visual quality on users N-Screen devices and integrates it with users preferences and contents genre information to personalize his N-Screen content. The objective is to recommend content that the user's N-Screen device and access network are capable of displaying and streaming with the user preferences that have not been supported in existing systems. Furthermore, we suggest a joint matrix factorization approach to jointly factorize the users rating matrix with the users N-Screen device similarity and program genres similarity. Finally, the experimental results show that we also enhance the prediction and recommendation accuracy, sparsity, and cold start issues.

  4. Automated detection of neovascularization for proliferative diabetic retinopathy screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roychowdhury, Sohini; Koozekanani, Dara D; Parhi, Keshab K

    2016-08-01

    Neovascularization is the primary manifestation of proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR) that can lead to acquired blindness. This paper presents a novel method that classifies neovascularizations in the 1-optic disc (OD) diameter region (NVD) and elsewhere (NVE) separately to achieve low false positive rates of neovascularization classification. First, the OD region and blood vessels are extracted. Next, the major blood vessel segments in the 1-OD diameter region are classified for NVD, and minor blood vessel segments elsewhere are classified for NVE. For NVD and NVE classifications, optimal region-based feature sets of 10 and 6 features, respectively, are used. The proposed method achieves classification sensitivity, specificity and accuracy for NVD and NVE of 74%, 98.2%, 87.6%, and 61%, 97.5%, 92.1%, respectively. Also, the proposed method achieves 86.4% sensitivity and 76% specificity for screening images with PDR from public and local data sets. Thus, the proposed NVD and NVE detection methods can play a key role in automated screening and prioritization of patients with diabetic retinopathy.

  5. High-throughput screening for novel anti-infectives using a C. elegans pathogenesis model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conery, Annie L; Larkins-Ford, Jonah; Ausubel, Frederick M; Kirienko, Natalia V

    2014-03-14

    In recent history, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has provided a compelling platform for the discovery of novel antimicrobial drugs. In this protocol, we present an automated, high-throughput C. elegans pathogenesis assay, which can be used to screen for anti-infective compounds that prevent nematodes from dying due to Pseudomonas aeruginosa. New antibiotics identified from such screens would be promising candidates for treatment of human infections, and also can be used as probe compounds to identify novel targets in microbial pathogenesis or host immunity. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  6. High content live cell imaging for the discovery of new antimalarial marine natural products

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cervantes Serena

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The human malaria parasite remains a burden in developing nations. It is responsible for up to one million deaths a year, a number that could rise due to increasing multi-drug resistance to all antimalarial drugs currently available. Therefore, there is an urgent need for the discovery of new drug therapies. Recently, our laboratory developed a simple one-step fluorescence-based live cell-imaging assay to integrate the complex biology of the human malaria parasite into drug discovery. Here we used our newly developed live cell-imaging platform to discover novel marine natural products and their cellular phenotypic effects against the most lethal malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. Methods A high content live cell imaging platform was used to screen marine extracts effects on malaria. Parasites were grown in vitro in the presence of extracts, stained with RNA sensitive dye, and imaged at timed intervals with the BD Pathway HT automated confocal microscope. Results Image analysis validated our new methodology at a larger scale level and revealed potential antimalarial activity of selected extracts with a minimal cytotoxic effect on host red blood cells. To further validate our assay, we investigated parasite's phenotypes when incubated with the purified bioactive natural product bromophycolide A. We show that bromophycolide A has a strong and specific morphological effect on parasites, similar to the ones observed from the initial extracts. Conclusion Collectively, our results show that high-content live cell-imaging (HCLCI can be used to screen chemical libraries and identify parasite specific inhibitors with limited host cytotoxic effects. All together we provide new leads for the discovery of novel antimalarials.

  7. High content live cell imaging for the discovery of new antimalarial marine natural products.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cervantes, Serena; Stout, Paige E; Prudhomme, Jacques; Engel, Sebastian; Bruton, Matthew; Cervantes, Michael; Carter, David; Tae-Chang, Young; Hay, Mark E; Aalbersberg, William; Kubanek, Julia; Le Roch, Karine G

    2012-01-03

    The human malaria parasite remains a burden in developing nations. It is responsible for up to one million deaths a year, a number that could rise due to increasing multi-drug resistance to all antimalarial drugs currently available. Therefore, there is an urgent need for the discovery of new drug therapies. Recently, our laboratory developed a simple one-step fluorescence-based live cell-imaging assay to integrate the complex biology of the human malaria parasite into drug discovery. Here we used our newly developed live cell-imaging platform to discover novel marine natural products and their cellular phenotypic effects against the most lethal malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. A high content live cell imaging platform was used to screen marine extracts effects on malaria. Parasites were grown in vitro in the presence of extracts, stained with RNA sensitive dye, and imaged at timed intervals with the BD Pathway HT automated confocal microscope. Image analysis validated our new methodology at a larger scale level and revealed potential antimalarial activity of selected extracts with a minimal cytotoxic effect on host red blood cells. To further validate our assay, we investigated parasite's phenotypes when incubated with the purified bioactive natural product bromophycolide A. We show that bromophycolide A has a strong and specific morphological effect on parasites, similar to the ones observed from the initial extracts. Collectively, our results show that high-content live cell-imaging (HCLCI) can be used to screen chemical libraries and identify parasite specific inhibitors with limited host cytotoxic effects. All together we provide new leads for the discovery of novel antimalarials. © 2011 Cervantes et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

  8. Study of total phenol, flavonoids contents and phytochemical screening of various leaves crude extracts of locally grown Thymus vulgaris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hossain, Mohammad Amzad; AL-Raqmi, Khulood Ahmed Salim; AL-Mijizy, Zawan Hamood; Weli, Afaf Mohammed; Al-Riyami, Qasim

    2013-09-01

    To prepare various crude extracts using different polarities of solvent and to quantitatively evaluate their total phenol, flavonoids contents and phytochemical screening of Thymus vulgaris collected from Al Jabal Al Akhdar, Nizwa, Sultanate of Oman. The leave sample was extracted with methanol and evaporated. Then it was defatted with water and extracted with different polarities organic solvents with increasing polarities. The prepare hexane, chloroform, ethyl acetate, butanol and methanol crude extracts were used for their evaluation of total phenol, flavonoids contents and phytochemical screening study. The established conventional methods were used for quantitative determination of total phenol, flavonoids contents and phytochemical screening. Phytochemical screening for various crude extracts were tested and shown positive result for flavonoids, saponins and steroids compounds. The result for total phenol content was the highest in butanol and the lowest in methanol crude extract whereas the total flavonoids contents was the highest in methanol and the lowest hexane crude extract. The crude extracts from locally grown Thymus vulgaris showed high concentration of flavonoids and it could be used as antibiotics for different curable and uncurable diseases.

  9. High-throughput phenotyping of plant resistance to aphids by automated video tracking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kloth, Karen J; Ten Broeke, Cindy Jm; Thoen, Manus Pm; Hanhart-van den Brink, Marianne; Wiegers, Gerrie L; Krips, Olga E; Noldus, Lucas Pjj; Dicke, Marcel; Jongsma, Maarten A

    2015-01-01

    Piercing-sucking insects are major vectors of plant viruses causing significant yield losses in crops. Functional genomics of plant resistance to these insects would greatly benefit from the availability of high-throughput, quantitative phenotyping methods. We have developed an automated video tracking platform that quantifies aphid feeding behaviour on leaf discs to assess the level of plant resistance. Through the analysis of aphid movement, the start and duration of plant penetrations by aphids were estimated. As a case study, video tracking confirmed the near-complete resistance of lettuce cultivar 'Corbana' against Nasonovia ribisnigri (Mosely), biotype Nr:0, and revealed quantitative resistance in Arabidopsis accession Co-2 against Myzus persicae (Sulzer). The video tracking platform was benchmarked against Electrical Penetration Graph (EPG) recordings and aphid population development assays. The use of leaf discs instead of intact plants reduced the intensity of the resistance effect in video tracking, but sufficiently replicated experiments resulted in similar conclusions as EPG recordings and aphid population assays. One video tracking platform could screen 100 samples in parallel. Automated video tracking can be used to screen large plant populations for resistance to aphids and other piercing-sucking insects.

  10. Automation of 3D cell culture using chemically defined hydrogels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rimann, Markus; Angres, Brigitte; Patocchi-Tenzer, Isabel; Braum, Susanne; Graf-Hausner, Ursula

    2014-04-01

    Drug development relies on high-throughput screening involving cell-based assays. Most of the assays are still based on cells grown in monolayer rather than in three-dimensional (3D) formats, although cells behave more in vivo-like in 3D. To exemplify the adoption of 3D techniques in drug development, this project investigated the automation of a hydrogel-based 3D cell culture system using a liquid-handling robot. The hydrogel technology used offers high flexibility of gel design due to a modular composition of a polymer network and bioactive components. The cell inert degradation of the gel at the end of the culture period guaranteed the harmless isolation of live cells for further downstream processing. Human colon carcinoma cells HCT-116 were encapsulated and grown in these dextran-based hydrogels, thereby forming 3D multicellular spheroids. Viability and DNA content of the cells were shown to be similar in automated and manually produced hydrogels. Furthermore, cell treatment with toxic Taxol concentrations (100 nM) had the same effect on HCT-116 cell viability in manually and automated hydrogel preparations. Finally, a fully automated dose-response curve with the reference compound Taxol showed the potential of this hydrogel-based 3D cell culture system in advanced drug development.

  11. Effectiveness of a Web-Based Screening and Fully Automated Brief Motivational Intervention for Adolescent Substance Use

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Arnaud, Nicolas; Baldus, Christiane; Elgán, Tobias H.

    2016-01-01

    of substance use among college students. However, the evidence is sparse among adolescents with at-risk use of alcohol and other drugs. Objective: This study evaluated the effectiveness of a targeted and fully automated Web-based brief motivational intervention with no face-to-face components on substance use...... methods and screened online for at-risk substance use using the CRAFFT (Car, Relax, Alone, Forget, Friends, Trouble) screening instrument. Participants were randomized to a single session brief motivational intervention group or an assessment-only control group but not blinded. Primary outcome......).Conclusions: Although the study is limited by a large drop-out, significant between-group effects for alcohol use indicate that targeted brief motivational intervention in a fully automated Web-based format can be effective to reduce drinking and lessen existing substance use service barriers for at...

  12. Micropillar arrays as a high-throughput screening platform for therapeutics in multiple sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mei, Feng; Fancy, Stephen P J; Shen, Yun-An A; Niu, Jianqin; Zhao, Chao; Presley, Bryan; Miao, Edna; Lee, Seonok; Mayoral, Sonia R; Redmond, Stephanie A; Etxeberria, Ainhoa; Xiao, Lan; Franklin, Robin J M; Green, Ari; Hauser, Stephen L; Chan, Jonah R

    2014-08-01

    Functional screening for compounds that promote remyelination represents a major hurdle in the development of rational therapeutics for multiple sclerosis. Screening for remyelination is problematic, as myelination requires the presence of axons. Standard methods do not resolve cell-autonomous effects and are not suited for high-throughput formats. Here we describe a binary indicant for myelination using micropillar arrays (BIMA). Engineered with conical dimensions, micropillars permit resolution of the extent and length of membrane wrapping from a single two-dimensional image. Confocal imaging acquired from the base to the tip of the pillars allows for detection of concentric wrapping observed as 'rings' of myelin. The platform is formatted in 96-well plates, amenable to semiautomated random acquisition and automated detection and quantification. Upon screening 1,000 bioactive molecules, we identified a cluster of antimuscarinic compounds that enhance oligodendrocyte differentiation and remyelination. Our findings demonstrate a new high-throughput screening platform for potential regenerative therapeutics in multiple sclerosis.

  13. Low cost automated whole smear microscopy screening system for detection of acid fast bacilli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan Nei Law

    Full Text Available In countries with high tuberculosis (TB burden, there is urgent need for rapid, large-scale screening to detect smear-positive patients. We developed a computer-aided whole smear screening system that focuses in real-time, captures images and provides diagnostic grading, for both bright-field and fluorescence microscopy for detection of acid-fast-bacilli (AFB from respiratory specimens.To evaluate the performance of dual-mode screening system in AFB diagnostic algorithms on concentrated smears with auramine O (AO staining, as well as direct smears with AO and Ziehl-Neelsen (ZN staining, using mycobacterial culture results as gold standard.Adult patient sputum samples requesting for M. tuberculosis cultures were divided into three batches for staining: direct AO-stained, direct ZN-stained and concentrated smears AO-stained. All slides were graded by an experienced microscopist, in parallel with the automated whole smear screening system. Sensitivity and specificity of a TB diagnostic algorithm in using the screening system alone, and in combination with a microscopist, were evaluated.Of 488 direct AO-stained smears, 228 were culture positive. These yielded a sensitivity of 81.6% and specificity of 74.2%. Of 334 direct smears with ZN staining, 142 were culture positive, which gave a sensitivity of 70.4% and specificity of 76.6%. Of 505 concentrated smears with AO staining, 250 were culture positive, giving a sensitivity of 86.4% and specificity of 71.0%. To further improve performance, machine grading was confirmed by manual smear grading when the number of AFBs detected fell within an uncertainty range. These combined results gave significant improvement in specificity (AO-direct:85.4%; ZN-direct:85.4%; AO-concentrated:92.5% and slight improvement in sensitivity while requiring only limited manual workload.Our system achieved high sensitivity without substantially compromising specificity when compared to culture results. Significant improvement

  14. Screening for illicit and medicinal drugs in whole blood using fully automated SPE and ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography with TOF-MS with data-independent acquisition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedersen, Anders Just; Dalsgaard, Petur Weihe; Rode, Andrej Jaroslav; Rasmussen, Brian Schou; Müller, Irene Breum; Johansen, Sys Stybe; Linnet, Kristian

    2013-07-01

    A broad forensic screening method for 256 analytes in whole blood based on a fully automated SPE robotic extraction and ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography (UHPLC) with TOF-MS with data-independent acquisition has been developed. The limit of identification was evaluated for all 256 compounds and 95 of these compounds were validated with regard to matrix effects, extraction recovery, and process efficiency. The limit of identification ranged from 0.001 to 0.1 mg/kg, and the process efficiency exceeded 50% for 73 of the 95 analytes. As an example of application, 1335 forensic traffic cases were analyzed with the presented screening method. Of these, 992 cases (74%) were positive for one or more traffic-relevant drugs above the Danish legal limits. Commonly abused drugs such as amphetamine, cocaine, and frequent types of benzodiazepines were the major findings. Nineteen less frequently encountered drugs were detected e.g. buprenorphine, butylone, cathine, fentanyl, lysergic acid diethylamide, m-chlorophenylpiperazine, 3,4-methylenedioxypyrovalerone, mephedrone, 4-methylamphetamine, p-fluoroamphetamine, and p-methoxy-N-methylamphetamine. In conclusion, using UHPLC-TOF-MS screening with data-independent acquisition resulted in the detection of common drugs of abuse as well as new designer drugs and more rarely occurring drugs. Thus, TOF-MS screening of blood samples constitutes a practical way for screening traffic cases, with the exception of δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, which should be handled in a separate method. © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  15. High content analysis of phagocytic activity and cell morphology with PuntoMorph

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Al-Ali, Hassan; Gao, Han; Dalby-Hansen, Camilla

    2017-01-01

    methods for quantifying phagocytic activity in multiple dimensions including speed, accuracy, and resolution. Conclusions We provide a framework to facilitate the development of high content assays suitable for drug screening. For convenience, we implemented our algorithm in a standalone software package...... with image-based quantification of phagocytic activity. New method We present a robust algorithm and cell-based assay system for high content analysis of phagocytic activity. The method utilizes fluorescently labeled beads as a phagocytic substrate with defined physical properties. The algorithm employs...... content screening. Results We tested our assay system using microglial cultures. Our results recapitulated previous findings on the effects of microglial stimulation on cell morphology and phagocytic activity. Moreover, our cell-level analysis revealed that the two phenotypes associated with microglial...

  16. Automated processing of zebrafish imaging data: a survey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mikut, Ralf; Dickmeis, Thomas; Driever, Wolfgang; Geurts, Pierre; Hamprecht, Fred A; Kausler, Bernhard X; Ledesma-Carbayo, María J; Marée, Raphaël; Mikula, Karol; Pantazis, Periklis; Ronneberger, Olaf; Santos, Andres; Stotzka, Rainer; Strähle, Uwe; Peyriéras, Nadine

    2013-09-01

    Due to the relative transparency of its embryos and larvae, the zebrafish is an ideal model organism for bioimaging approaches in vertebrates. Novel microscope technologies allow the imaging of developmental processes in unprecedented detail, and they enable the use of complex image-based read-outs for high-throughput/high-content screening. Such applications can easily generate Terabytes of image data, the handling and analysis of which becomes a major bottleneck in extracting the targeted information. Here, we describe the current state of the art in computational image analysis in the zebrafish system. We discuss the challenges encountered when handling high-content image data, especially with regard to data quality, annotation, and storage. We survey methods for preprocessing image data for further analysis, and describe selected examples of automated image analysis, including the tracking of cells during embryogenesis, heartbeat detection, identification of dead embryos, recognition of tissues and anatomical landmarks, and quantification of behavioral patterns of adult fish. We review recent examples for applications using such methods, such as the comprehensive analysis of cell lineages during early development, the generation of a three-dimensional brain atlas of zebrafish larvae, and high-throughput drug screens based on movement patterns. Finally, we identify future challenges for the zebrafish image analysis community, notably those concerning the compatibility of algorithms and data formats for the assembly of modular analysis pipelines.

  17. Automated Processing of Zebrafish Imaging Data: A Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dickmeis, Thomas; Driever, Wolfgang; Geurts, Pierre; Hamprecht, Fred A.; Kausler, Bernhard X.; Ledesma-Carbayo, María J.; Marée, Raphaël; Mikula, Karol; Pantazis, Periklis; Ronneberger, Olaf; Santos, Andres; Stotzka, Rainer; Strähle, Uwe; Peyriéras, Nadine

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Due to the relative transparency of its embryos and larvae, the zebrafish is an ideal model organism for bioimaging approaches in vertebrates. Novel microscope technologies allow the imaging of developmental processes in unprecedented detail, and they enable the use of complex image-based read-outs for high-throughput/high-content screening. Such applications can easily generate Terabytes of image data, the handling and analysis of which becomes a major bottleneck in extracting the targeted information. Here, we describe the current state of the art in computational image analysis in the zebrafish system. We discuss the challenges encountered when handling high-content image data, especially with regard to data quality, annotation, and storage. We survey methods for preprocessing image data for further analysis, and describe selected examples of automated image analysis, including the tracking of cells during embryogenesis, heartbeat detection, identification of dead embryos, recognition of tissues and anatomical landmarks, and quantification of behavioral patterns of adult fish. We review recent examples for applications using such methods, such as the comprehensive analysis of cell lineages during early development, the generation of a three-dimensional brain atlas of zebrafish larvae, and high-throughput drug screens based on movement patterns. Finally, we identify future challenges for the zebrafish image analysis community, notably those concerning the compatibility of algorithms and data formats for the assembly of modular analysis pipelines. PMID:23758125

  18. Screening of IAEA environmental samples for fissile material content

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hembree, Doyle M. Jr.; Carter, Joel A.; Devault, Gerald L.; Whitaker, J. Michael; Glasgow, David

    2001-01-01

    Full text: Analysis of environmental samples for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Strengthened Safeguards Systems program requires that stringent measures be taken to control contamination. To facilitate contamination control, it is extremely useful to have some estimate of the fissile content of a given sample prior to beginning sample preparation and analysis. This is particularly true for laboratories that employ clean rooms during sample preparation. A review of the analytical results for samples submitted between January 1, 1999 and September 1, 2000 revealed that the total uranium content values ranged from 0.2 to greater than 500,000 ng/sample. Poor estimates of the uranium or plutonium content in the samples have caused some of the laboratories in the IAEA Network of Analytical Laboratories (NWAL) to experience clean laboratory contamination, sample cross contamination, and non-ideal uranium spike additions. This has led to significant increases in analysis costs (e.g., recertification of clean rooms after removing contamination, and rerunning samples) and degradation in data quality. A number of methods have been proposed for screening environmental samples for fissile material content, including gamma spectrometry, x-ray fluorescence, kinetic phosphorimetry (KPA), and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Gamma spectrometry and x-ray fluorescence are suitable for screening samples with microgram or greater quantities of uranium. ICP-MS and KPA are used successfully in some DOE NWAL laboratories to screen environmental samples. A neutron activation analysis (NAA) method that offers numerous advantages over other screening techniques for environmental samples has recently been proposed. Fissile materials such as 239 Pu and 235 U can be made to undergo fission in the intense neutron field to which they are exposed during neutron activation analysis (NAA). Some of the fission products emit neutrons referred to as 'delayed

  19. Comparison among single-phase test, automated screening method and GC/MS for the traceability of ketamine in urine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alice Visione

    2016-12-01

    CONCLUSION Following the law indications, ketamine is not searched: this limit does not make the authorities able to apply the penalties expected for road laws violations. The automation is essential to guarantee the reliability of toxicological screening tests, especially to medico-legal significance. This results highlight the absolutely necessity of the execution of the confirmation test, successively to screening analysis.

  20. The Development and User Satisfaction Evaluation of Internet-Based N-Screen Healthcare Walking Content to Increase Continuous Usage Motivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Youm, Sekyoung

    2015-08-01

    The purpose of the current study is (1) to apply Internet-based N-Screen (this is used like the term "emultiscreen"; as the technology that provides services of shared content or application via N devices, it includes all screens such as personal computers [PCs], TV, and mobile devices) services to healthcare services by developing games for improving one's health and (2) to present ways to activate the use of health promotion contents in the future by investigating user satisfaction and whether there is any intention to accept the contents and/or use the services continuously. In order to evaluate the customized health maintenance content provided by the healthcare walking system developed in the current study, 98 adult men and women residing in Seoul, Korea, were instructed to use 10 minutes' worth of the walking content. Perceived quality, level of trust in the results, effectiveness of the exercise, and overall satisfaction were measured in regard to the N-Screen-based walking content, including those for the cell phone, PC, and Internet protocol TV (IPTV). Walking contents using N-Screen services were perceived with high levels of trust in the results of the exercise, the effectiveness of the exercise, and overall satisfaction. In terms of the usability of N-Screen services, the younger the participants, the more usable they found the mobile or PC programs. The older the participants, the more usable they found the IPTV screens, although they still struggled with using the content given; operating IPTVs proved to be difficult for them. Furthermore, participants who were engaged in exercise on a regular basis were less satisfied with the program, in general. The present study has developed a walking system using N-Screen programs to make the most common and effective forms of exercise-walking and running-accessible indoors. This may increase motivation to exercise by offering services that boost one's interest in exercising, such as personal monitoring and real

  1. Effects of Secondary Task Modality and Processing Code on Automation Trust and Utilization During Simulated Airline Luggage Screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Rachel; Madhavan, Poornima

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this research was to examine the impact of environmental distractions on human trust and utilization of automation during the process of visual search. Participants performed a computer-simulated airline luggage screening task with the assistance of a 70% reliable automated decision aid (called DETECTOR) both with and without environmental distractions. The distraction was implemented as a secondary task in either a competing modality (visual) or non-competing modality (auditory). The secondary task processing code either competed with the luggage screening task (spatial code) or with the automation's textual directives (verbal code). We measured participants' system trust, perceived reliability of the system (when a target weapon was present and absent), compliance, reliance, and confidence when agreeing and disagreeing with the system under both distracted and undistracted conditions. Results revealed that system trust was lower in the visual-spatial and auditory-verbal conditions than in the visual-verbal and auditory-spatial conditions. Perceived reliability of the system (when the target was present) was significantly higher when the secondary task was visual rather than auditory. Compliance with the aid increased in all conditions except for the auditory-verbal condition, where it decreased. Similar to the pattern for trust, reliance on the automation was lower in the visual-spatial and auditory-verbal conditions than in the visual-verbal and auditory-spatial conditions. Confidence when agreeing with the system decreased with the addition of any kind of distraction; however, confidence when disagreeing increased with the addition of an auditory secondary task but decreased with the addition of a visual task. A model was developed to represent the research findings and demonstrate the relationship between secondary task modality, processing code, and automation use. Results suggest that the nature of environmental distractions influence

  2. Novel heparan sulfate assay by using automated high-throughput mass spectrometry: Application to monitoring and screening for mucopolysaccharidoses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimada, Tsutomu; Kelly, Joan; LaMarr, William A; van Vlies, Naomi; Yasuda, Eriko; Mason, Robert W; Mackenzie, William; Kubaski, Francyne; Giugliani, Roberto; Chinen, Yasutsugu; Yamaguchi, Seiji; Suzuki, Yasuyuki; Orii, Kenji E; Fukao, Toshiyuki; Orii, Tadao; Tomatsu, Shunji

    2014-01-01

    Mucopolysaccharidoses (MPS) are caused by deficiency of one of a group of specific lysosomal enzymes, resulting in excessive accumulation of glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). We previously developed GAG assay methods using liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS); however, it takes 4-5 min per sample for analysis. For the large numbers of samples in a screening program, a more rapid process is desirable. The automated high-throughput mass spectrometry (HT-MS/MS) system (RapidFire) integrates a solid phase extraction robot to concentrate and desalt samples prior to direction into the MS/MS without chromatographic separation; thereby allowing each sample to be processed within 10s (enabling screening of more than one million samples per year). The aim of this study was to develop a higher throughput system to assay heparan sulfate (HS) using HT-MS/MS, and to compare its reproducibility, sensitivity and specificity with conventional LC-MS/MS. HS levels were measured in the blood (plasma and serum) from control subjects and patients with MPS II, III, or IV and in dried blood spots (DBS) from newborn controls and patients with MPS I, II, or III. Results obtained from HT-MS/MS showed 1) that there was a strong correlation of levels of disaccharides derived from HS in the blood, between those calculated using conventional LC-MS/MS and HT-MS/MS, 2) that levels of HS in the blood were significantly elevated in patients with MPS II and III, but not in MPS IVA, 3) that the level of HS in patients with a severe form of MPS II was higher than that in an attenuated form, 4) that reduction of blood HS level was observed in MPS II patients treated with enzyme replacement therapy or hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, and 5) that levels of HS in newborn DBS were elevated in patients with MPS I, II or III, compared to those of control newborns. In conclusion, HT-MS/MS provides much higher throughput than LC-MS/MS-based methods with similar sensitivity and specificity

  3. Microengineering methods for cell-based microarrays and high-throughput drug-screening applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xu Feng; Wu Jinhui; Wang Shuqi; Gurkan, Umut Atakan; Demirci, Utkan; Durmus, Naside Gozde

    2011-01-01

    Screening for effective therapeutic agents from millions of drug candidates is costly, time consuming, and often faces concerns due to the extensive use of animals. To improve cost effectiveness, and to minimize animal testing in pharmaceutical research, in vitro monolayer cell microarrays with multiwell plate assays have been developed. Integration of cell microarrays with microfluidic systems has facilitated automated and controlled component loading, significantly reducing the consumption of the candidate compounds and the target cells. Even though these methods significantly increased the throughput compared to conventional in vitro testing systems and in vivo animal models, the cost associated with these platforms remains prohibitively high. Besides, there is a need for three-dimensional (3D) cell-based drug-screening models which can mimic the in vivo microenvironment and the functionality of the native tissues. Here, we present the state-of-the-art microengineering approaches that can be used to develop 3D cell-based drug-screening assays. We highlight the 3D in vitro cell culture systems with live cell-based arrays, microfluidic cell culture systems, and their application to high-throughput drug screening. We conclude that among the emerging microengineering approaches, bioprinting holds great potential to provide repeatable 3D cell-based constructs with high temporal, spatial control and versatility.

  4. Microengineering methods for cell-based microarrays and high-throughput drug-screening applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xu Feng; Wu Jinhui; Wang Shuqi; Gurkan, Umut Atakan; Demirci, Utkan [Department of Medicine, Demirci Bio-Acoustic-MEMS in Medicine (BAMM) Laboratory, Center for Biomedical Engineering, Brigham and Women' s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA (United States); Durmus, Naside Gozde, E-mail: udemirci@rics.bwh.harvard.edu [School of Engineering and Division of Biology and Medicine, Brown University, Providence, RI (United States)

    2011-09-15

    Screening for effective therapeutic agents from millions of drug candidates is costly, time consuming, and often faces concerns due to the extensive use of animals. To improve cost effectiveness, and to minimize animal testing in pharmaceutical research, in vitro monolayer cell microarrays with multiwell plate assays have been developed. Integration of cell microarrays with microfluidic systems has facilitated automated and controlled component loading, significantly reducing the consumption of the candidate compounds and the target cells. Even though these methods significantly increased the throughput compared to conventional in vitro testing systems and in vivo animal models, the cost associated with these platforms remains prohibitively high. Besides, there is a need for three-dimensional (3D) cell-based drug-screening models which can mimic the in vivo microenvironment and the functionality of the native tissues. Here, we present the state-of-the-art microengineering approaches that can be used to develop 3D cell-based drug-screening assays. We highlight the 3D in vitro cell culture systems with live cell-based arrays, microfluidic cell culture systems, and their application to high-throughput drug screening. We conclude that among the emerging microengineering approaches, bioprinting holds great potential to provide repeatable 3D cell-based constructs with high temporal, spatial control and versatility.

  5. A high-content phenotypic screen reveals the disruptive potency of quinacrine and 3',4'-dichlorobenzamil on the digestive vacuole of Plasmodium falciparum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Yan Quan; Goh, Amanda S P; Ch'ng, Jun Hong; Nosten, François H; Preiser, Peter Rainer; Pervaiz, Shazib; Yadav, Sanjiv Kumar; Tan, Kevin S W

    2014-01-01

    Plasmodium falciparum is the etiological agent of malignant malaria and has been shown to exhibit features resembling programmed cell death. This is triggered upon treatment with low micromolar doses of chloroquine or other lysosomotrophic compounds and is associated with leakage of the digestive vacuole contents. In order to exploit this cell death pathway, we developed a high-content screening method to select compounds that can disrupt the parasite vacuole, as measured by the leakage of intravacuolar Ca(2+). This assay uses the ImageStream 100, an imaging-capable flow cytometer, to assess the distribution of the fluorescent calcium probe Fluo-4. We obtained two hits from a small library of 25 test compounds, quinacrine and 3',4'-dichlorobenzamil. The ability of these compounds to permeabilize the digestive vacuole in laboratory strains and clinical isolates was validated by confocal microscopy. The hits could induce programmed cell death features in both chloroquine-sensitive and -resistant laboratory strains. Quinacrine was effective at inhibiting field isolates in a 48-h reinvasion assay regardless of artemisinin clearance status. We therefore present as proof of concept a phenotypic screening method with the potential to provide mechanistic insights to the activity of antimalarial drugs.

  6. The effects of screen media content on young children's executive functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huber, Brittany; Yeates, Megan; Meyer, Denny; Fleckhammer, Lorraine; Kaufman, Jordy

    2018-06-01

    Children's exposure to screen-based media has raised concerns for many reasons. One reason is that viewing particular television content has been shown to negatively affect children's executive functioning. Yet, it is unclear whether interacting with a touchscreen device affects executive functioning in the same way as the television research suggests. In the current study, 96 2- and 3-year-old children completed executive functioning measures of working memory and response inhibition and task switching before and after a brief screen intervention consisting of watching an educational television show, playing an educational app, or watching a cartoon. Children's ability to delay gratification was also assessed. Results indicate that the type of screen intervention had a significant effect on executive functioning performance. Children were more likely to delay gratification after playing an educational app than after viewing a cartoon. In particular instances, children's working memory improved after playing the educational app. These findings emphasize that, for young children's executive functioning, interactivity and content may be more important factors to consider than simply "screen time." Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Automated two-point dixon screening for the evaluation of hepatic steatosis and siderosis: comparison with R2-relaxometry and chemical shift-based sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henninger, B; Zoller, H; Rauch, S; Schocke, M; Kannengiesser, S; Zhong, X; Reiter, G; Jaschke, W; Kremser, C

    2015-05-01

    To evaluate the automated two-point Dixon screening sequence for the detection and estimated quantification of hepatic iron and fat compared with standard sequences as a reference. One hundred and two patients with suspected diffuse liver disease were included in this prospective study. The following MRI protocol was used: 3D-T1-weighted opposed- and in-phase gradient echo with two-point Dixon reconstruction and dual-ratio signal discrimination algorithm ("screening" sequence); fat-saturated, multi-gradient-echo sequence with 12 echoes; gradient-echo T1 FLASH opposed- and in-phase. Bland-Altman plots were generated and correlation coefficients were calculated to compare the sequences. The screening sequence diagnosed fat in 33, iron in 35 and a combination of both in 4 patients. Correlation between R2* values of the screening sequence and the standard relaxometry was excellent (r = 0.988). A slightly lower correlation (r = 0.978) was found between the fat fraction of the screening sequence and the standard sequence. Bland-Altman revealed systematically lower R2* values obtained from the screening sequence and higher fat fraction values obtained with the standard sequence with a rather high variability in agreement. The screening sequence is a promising method with fast diagnosis of the predominant liver disease. It is capable of estimating the amount of hepatic fat and iron comparable to standard methods. • MRI plays a major role in the clarification of diffuse liver disease. • The screening sequence was introduced for the assessment of diffuse liver disease. • It is a fast and automated algorithm for the evaluation of hepatic iron and fat. • It is capable of estimating the amount of hepatic fat and iron.

  8. Automated recommendation for cervical cancer screening and surveillance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagholikar, Kavishwar B; MacLaughlin, Kathy L; Casey, Petra M; Kastner, Thomas M; Henry, Michael R; Hankey, Ronald A; Peters, Steve G; Greenes, Robert A; Chute, Christopher G; Liu, Hongfang; Chaudhry, Rajeev

    2014-01-01

    Because of the complexity of cervical cancer prevention guidelines, clinicians often fail to follow best-practice recommendations. Moreover, existing clinical decision support (CDS) systems generally recommend a cervical cytology every three years for all female patients, which is inappropriate for patients with abnormal findings that require surveillance at shorter intervals. To address this problem, we developed a decision tree-based CDS system that integrates national guidelines to provide comprehensive guidance to clinicians. Validation was performed in several iterations by comparing recommendations generated by the system with those of clinicians for 333 patients. The CDS system extracted relevant patient information from the electronic health record and applied the guideline model with an overall accuracy of 87%. Providers without CDS assistance needed an average of 1 minute 39 seconds to decide on recommendations for management of abnormal findings. Overall, our work demonstrates the feasibility and potential utility of automated recommendation system for cervical cancer screening and surveillance.

  9. General Staining and Segmentation Procedures for High Content Imaging and Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambers, Kevin M; Mandavilli, Bhaskar S; Dolman, Nick J; Janes, Michael S

    2018-01-01

    Automated quantitative fluorescence microscopy, also known as high content imaging (HCI), is a rapidly growing analytical approach in cell biology. Because automated image analysis relies heavily on robust demarcation of cells and subcellular regions, reliable methods for labeling cells is a critical component of the HCI workflow. Labeling of cells for image segmentation is typically performed with fluorescent probes that bind DNA for nuclear-based cell demarcation or with those which react with proteins for image analysis based on whole cell staining. These reagents, along with instrument and software settings, play an important role in the successful segmentation of cells in a population for automated and quantitative image analysis. In this chapter, we describe standard procedures for labeling and image segmentation in both live and fixed cell samples. The chapter will also provide troubleshooting guidelines for some of the common problems associated with these aspects of HCI.

  10. Nanoscale high-content analysis using compositional heterogeneities of single proteoliposomes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mathiasen, Signe; Christensen, Sune M.; Fung, Juan José

    2014-01-01

    Proteoliposome reconstitution is a standard method to stabilize purified transmembrane proteins in membranes for structural and functional assays. Here we quantified intrareconstitution heterogeneities in single proteoliposomes using fluorescence microscopy. Our results suggest that compositional...... heterogeneities can severely skew ensemble-average proteoliposome measurements but also enable ultraminiaturized high-content screens. We took advantage of this screening capability to map the oligomerization energy of the β2-adrenergic receptor using ∼10(9)-fold less protein than conventional assays....

  11. High-throughput screen for novel antimicrobials using a whole animal infection model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moy, Terence I; Conery, Annie L; Larkins-Ford, Jonah; Wu, Gang; Mazitschek, Ralph; Casadei, Gabriele; Lewis, Kim; Carpenter, Anne E; Ausubel, Frederick M

    2009-07-17

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is a unique whole animal model system for identifying small molecules with in vivo anti-infective properties. C. elegans can be infected with a broad range of human pathogens, including Enterococcus faecalis, an important human nosocomial pathogen. Here, we describe an automated, high-throughput screen of 37,200 compounds and natural product extracts for those that enhance survival of C. elegans infected with E. faecalis. Using a robot to dispense live, infected animals into 384-well plates and automated microscopy and image analysis, we identified 28 compounds and extracts not previously reported to have antimicrobial properties, including six structural classes that cure infected C. elegans animals but do not affect the growth of the pathogen in vitro, thus acting by a mechanism of action distinct from antibiotics currently in clinical use.

  12. Adherence to guidelines for cardiovascular screening in current high school preparticipation evaluation forms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rausch, Christopher M; Phillips, George C

    2009-10-01

    We compared the content of the cardiac screening questions on US state high school athletic association preparticipation evaluation forms with current consensus recommendations. We reviewed the high school athletic association's approved, recommended, or required sports preparticipation form from each of the 50 US states and the District of Columbia, and compared the content of the personal and family history components with current recommendations for cardiac screening questions. We found that 85% of the preparticipation forms in current use contain all elements of the formerly recommended guidelines, but only 17% contain all elements of the new consensus guidelines. We conclude that although there appears to be some improvement in the content of the preparticipation forms in current use compared with previous studies, the vast majority of these forms are incomplete compared with current consensus guidelines.

  13. Accuracy of an automated system for tuberculosis detection on chest radiographs in high-risk screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melendez, J; Hogeweg, L; Sánchez, C I; Philipsen, R H H M; Aldridge, R W; Hayward, A C; Abubakar, I; van Ginneken, B; Story, A

    2018-05-01

    Tuberculosis (TB) screening programmes can be optimised by reducing the number of chest radiographs (CXRs) requiring interpretation by human experts. To evaluate the performance of computerised detection software in triaging CXRs in a high-throughput digital mobile TB screening programme. A retrospective evaluation of the software was performed on a database of 38 961 postero-anterior CXRs from unique individuals seen between 2005 and 2010, 87 of whom were diagnosed with TB. The software generated a TB likelihood score for each CXR. This score was compared with a reference standard for notified active pulmonary TB using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve and localisation ROC (LROC) curve analyses. On ROC curve analysis, software specificity was 55.71% (95%CI 55.21-56.20) and negative predictive value was 99.98% (95%CI 99.95-99.99), at a sensitivity of 95%. The area under the ROC curve was 0.90 (95%CI 0.86-0.93). Results of the LROC curve analysis were similar. The software could identify more than half of the normal images in a TB screening setting while maintaining high sensitivity, and may therefore be used for triage.

  14. The high throughput biomedicine unit at the institute for molecular medicine Finland: high throughput screening meets precision medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pietiainen, Vilja; Saarela, Jani; von Schantz, Carina; Turunen, Laura; Ostling, Paivi; Wennerberg, Krister

    2014-05-01

    The High Throughput Biomedicine (HTB) unit at the Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland FIMM was established in 2010 to serve as a national and international academic screening unit providing access to state of the art instrumentation for chemical and RNAi-based high throughput screening. The initial focus of the unit was multiwell plate based chemical screening and high content microarray-based siRNA screening. However, over the first four years of operation, the unit has moved to a more flexible service platform where both chemical and siRNA screening is performed at different scales primarily in multiwell plate-based assays with a wide range of readout possibilities with a focus on ultraminiaturization to allow for affordable screening for the academic users. In addition to high throughput screening, the equipment of the unit is also used to support miniaturized, multiplexed and high throughput applications for other types of research such as genomics, sequencing and biobanking operations. Importantly, with the translational research goals at FIMM, an increasing part of the operations at the HTB unit is being focused on high throughput systems biological platforms for functional profiling of patient cells in personalized and precision medicine projects.

  15. New sunflower seeds with high contents of phytosterols

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Velasco Leonardo

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Dietary phytosterols have a positive nutritional impact because they contribute to reduce cholesterol levels in blood. Accordingly, foods rich in phytosterols are required in a healthy diet. Vegetable oils are the richest source of phytosterols in the diet, though sunflower oil has lower phytosterol content than other seed oils such as rapeseed and corn. Increasing phytosterol content in sunflower oil requires optimizing first selection procedures. In this way, the development of accurate methods for analyzing phytosterol content in seeds instead of oils has opened up recently the way for large-scale screening for this trait. Large variability for seed phytosterol content has been identified in sunflower germplasm, from which we have developed a line, IASP-18, with about twofold seed phytosterol content than conventional sunflower. The trait is expressed across environments. Genetic studies are underway to characterize its inheritance and assess the feasibility of introgressing genes for high phytosterol content into elite sunflower germplasm.

  16. Highly automated driving, secondary task performance, and driver state.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merat, Natasha; Jamson, A Hamish; Lai, Frank C H; Carsten, Oliver

    2012-10-01

    A driving simulator study compared the effect of changes in workload on performance in manual and highly automated driving. Changes in driver state were also observed by examining variations in blink patterns. With the addition of a greater number of advanced driver assistance systems in vehicles, the driver's role is likely to alter in the future from an operator in manual driving to a supervisor of highly automated cars. Understanding the implications of such advancements on drivers and road safety is important. A total of 50 participants were recruited for this study and drove the simulator in both manual and highly automated mode. As well as comparing the effect of adjustments in driving-related workload on performance, the effect of a secondary Twenty Questions Task was also investigated. In the absence of the secondary task, drivers' response to critical incidents was similar in manual and highly automated driving conditions. The worst performance was observed when drivers were required to regain control of driving in the automated mode while distracted by the secondary task. Blink frequency patterns were more consistent for manual than automated driving but were generally suppressed during conditions of high workload. Highly automated driving did not have a deleterious effect on driver performance, when attention was not diverted to the distracting secondary task. As the number of systems implemented in cars increases, an understanding of the implications of such automation on drivers' situation awareness, workload, and ability to remain engaged with the driving task is important.

  17. Novel Acoustic Loading of a Mass Spectrometer: Toward Next-Generation High-Throughput MS Screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinclair, Ian; Stearns, Rick; Pringle, Steven; Wingfield, Jonathan; Datwani, Sammy; Hall, Eric; Ghislain, Luke; Majlof, Lars; Bachman, Martin

    2016-02-01

    High-throughput, direct measurement of substrate-to-product conversion by label-free detection, without the need for engineered substrates or secondary assays, could be considered the "holy grail" of drug discovery screening. Mass spectrometry (MS) has the potential to be part of this ultimate screening solution, but is constrained by the limitations of existing MS sample introduction modes that cannot meet the throughput requirements of high-throughput screening (HTS). Here we report data from a prototype system (Echo-MS) that uses acoustic droplet ejection (ADE) to transfer femtoliter-scale droplets in a rapid, precise, and accurate fashion directly into the MS. The acoustic source can load samples into the MS from a microtiter plate at a rate of up to three samples per second. The resulting MS signal displays a very sharp attack profile and ions are detected within 50 ms of activation of the acoustic transducer. Additionally, we show that the system is capable of generating multiply charged ion species from simple peptides and large proteins. The combination of high speed and low sample volume has significant potential within not only drug discovery, but also other areas of the industry. © 2015 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  18. An Automated Algorithm to Screen Massive Training Samples for a Global Impervious Surface Classification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Bin; Brown de Colstoun, Eric; Wolfe, Robert E.; Tilton, James C.; Huang, Chengquan; Smith, Sarah E.

    2012-01-01

    An algorithm is developed to automatically screen the outliers from massive training samples for Global Land Survey - Imperviousness Mapping Project (GLS-IMP). GLS-IMP is to produce a global 30 m spatial resolution impervious cover data set for years 2000 and 2010 based on the Landsat Global Land Survey (GLS) data set. This unprecedented high resolution impervious cover data set is not only significant to the urbanization studies but also desired by the global carbon, hydrology, and energy balance researches. A supervised classification method, regression tree, is applied in this project. A set of accurate training samples is the key to the supervised classifications. Here we developed the global scale training samples from 1 m or so resolution fine resolution satellite data (Quickbird and Worldview2), and then aggregate the fine resolution impervious cover map to 30 m resolution. In order to improve the classification accuracy, the training samples should be screened before used to train the regression tree. It is impossible to manually screen 30 m resolution training samples collected globally. For example, in Europe only, there are 174 training sites. The size of the sites ranges from 4.5 km by 4.5 km to 8.1 km by 3.6 km. The amount training samples are over six millions. Therefore, we develop this automated statistic based algorithm to screen the training samples in two levels: site and scene level. At the site level, all the training samples are divided to 10 groups according to the percentage of the impervious surface within a sample pixel. The samples following in each 10% forms one group. For each group, both univariate and multivariate outliers are detected and removed. Then the screen process escalates to the scene level. A similar screen process but with a looser threshold is applied on the scene level considering the possible variance due to the site difference. We do not perform the screen process across the scenes because the scenes might vary due to

  19. AutoLabDB: a substantial open source database schema to support a high-throughput automated laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sparkes, Andrew; Clare, Amanda

    2012-05-15

    Modern automated laboratories need substantial data management solutions to both store and make accessible the details of the experiments they perform. To be useful, a modern Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) should be flexible and easily extensible to support evolving laboratory requirements, and should be based on the solid foundations of a robust, well-designed database. We have developed such a database schema to support an automated laboratory that performs experiments in systems biology and high-throughput screening. We describe the design of the database schema (AutoLabDB), detailing the main features and describing why we believe it will be relevant to LIMS manufacturers or custom builders. This database has been developed to support two large automated Robot Scientist systems over the last 5 years, where it has been used as the basis of an LIMS that helps to manage both the laboratory and all the experiment data produced.

  20. Automated cell analysis tool for a genome-wide RNAi screen with support vector machine based supervised learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remmele, Steffen; Ritzerfeld, Julia; Nickel, Walter; Hesser, Jürgen

    2011-03-01

    RNAi-based high-throughput microscopy screens have become an important tool in biological sciences in order to decrypt mostly unknown biological functions of human genes. However, manual analysis is impossible for such screens since the amount of image data sets can often be in the hundred thousands. Reliable automated tools are thus required to analyse the fluorescence microscopy image data sets usually containing two or more reaction channels. The herein presented image analysis tool is designed to analyse an RNAi screen investigating the intracellular trafficking and targeting of acylated Src kinases. In this specific screen, a data set consists of three reaction channels and the investigated cells can appear in different phenotypes. The main issue of the image processing task is an automatic cell segmentation which has to be robust and accurate for all different phenotypes and a successive phenotype classification. The cell segmentation is done in two steps by segmenting the cell nuclei first and then using a classifier-enhanced region growing on basis of the cell nuclei to segment the cells. The classification of the cells is realized by a support vector machine which has to be trained manually using supervised learning. Furthermore, the tool is brightness invariant allowing different staining quality and it provides a quality control that copes with typical defects during preparation and acquisition. A first version of the tool has already been successfully applied for an RNAi-screen containing three hundred thousand image data sets and the SVM extended version is designed for additional screens.

  1. Flexible End2End Workflow Automation of Hit-Discovery Research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holzmüller-Laue, Silke; Göde, Bernd; Thurow, Kerstin

    2014-08-01

    The article considers a new approach of more complex laboratory automation at the workflow layer. The authors purpose the automation of end2end workflows. The combination of all relevant subprocesses-whether automated or manually performed, independently, and in which organizational unit-results in end2end processes that include all result dependencies. The end2end approach focuses on not only the classical experiments in synthesis or screening, but also on auxiliary processes such as the production and storage of chemicals, cell culturing, and maintenance as well as preparatory activities and analyses of experiments. Furthermore, the connection of control flow and data flow in the same process model leads to reducing of effort of the data transfer between the involved systems, including the necessary data transformations. This end2end laboratory automation can be realized effectively with the modern methods of business process management (BPM). This approach is based on a new standardization of the process-modeling notation Business Process Model and Notation 2.0. In drug discovery, several scientific disciplines act together with manifold modern methods, technologies, and a wide range of automated instruments for the discovery and design of target-based drugs. The article discusses the novel BPM-based automation concept with an implemented example of a high-throughput screening of previously synthesized compound libraries. © 2014 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  2. Comparing Visually Assessed BI-RADS Breast Density and Automated Volumetric Breast Density Software: A Cross-Sectional Study in a Breast Cancer Screening Setting

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Waal, Daniëlle; den Heeten, Gerard J.; Pijnappel, Ruud M.; Schuur, Klaas H.; Timmers, Johanna M. H.; Verbeek, André L. M.; Broeders, Mireille J. M.

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study is to compare different methods for measuring breast density, both visual assessments and automated volumetric density, in a breast cancer screening setting. These measures could potentially be implemented in future screening programmes, in the context of personalised

  3. Comparing Visually Assessed BI-RADS Breast Density and Automated Volumetric Breast Density Software: A Cross-Sectional Study in a Breast Cancer Screening Setting

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Waal, D. van der; Heeten, GJ. den; Pijnappel, R.M.; Schuur, K.H.; Timmers, J.M.; Verbeek, A.L.; Broeders, M.J.

    2015-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: The objective of this study is to compare different methods for measuring breast density, both visual assessments and automated volumetric density, in a breast cancer screening setting. These measures could potentially be implemented in future screening programmes, in the context of

  4. Comparing Visually Assessed BI-RADS Breast Density and Automated Volumetric Breast Density Software : A Cross-Sectional Study in a Breast Cancer Screening Setting

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Waal, Danielle; den Heeten, Gerard J.; Pijnappel, Ruud M.; Schuur, Klaas H.; Timmers, Johanna M. H.; Verbeek, Andre L. M.; Broeders, Mireille J. M.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction The objective of this study is to compare different methods for measuring breast density, both visual assessments and automated volumetric density, in a breast cancer screening setting. These measures could potentially be implemented in future screening programmes, in the context of

  5. Automated Microfluidic Platform for Serial Polymerase Chain Reaction and High-Resolution Melting Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Weidong; Bean, Brian; Corey, Scott; Coursey, Johnathan S; Hasson, Kenton C; Inoue, Hiroshi; Isano, Taisuke; Kanderian, Sami; Lane, Ben; Liang, Hongye; Murphy, Brian; Owen, Greg; Shinoda, Nobuhiko; Zeng, Shulin; Knight, Ivor T

    2016-06-01

    We report the development of an automated genetic analyzer for human sample testing based on microfluidic rapid polymerase chain reaction (PCR) with high-resolution melting analysis (HRMA). The integrated DNA microfluidic cartridge was used on a platform designed with a robotic pipettor system that works by sequentially picking up different test solutions from a 384-well plate, mixing them in the tips, and delivering mixed fluids to the DNA cartridge. A novel image feedback flow control system based on a Canon 5D Mark II digital camera was developed for controlling fluid movement through a complex microfluidic branching network without the use of valves. The same camera was used for measuring the high-resolution melt curve of DNA amplicons that were generated in the microfluidic chip. Owing to fast heating and cooling as well as sensitive temperature measurement in the microfluidic channels, the time frame for PCR and HRMA was dramatically reduced from hours to minutes. Preliminary testing results demonstrated that rapid serial PCR and HRMA are possible while still achieving high data quality that is suitable for human sample testing. © 2015 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  6. Screening_mgmt: a Python module for managing screening data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helfenstein, Andreas; Tammela, Päivi

    2015-02-01

    High-throughput screening is an established technique in drug discovery and, as such, has also found its way into academia. High-throughput screening generates a considerable amount of data, which is why specific software is used for its analysis and management. The commercially available software packages are often beyond the financial limits of small-scale academic laboratories and, furthermore, lack the flexibility to fulfill certain user-specific requirements. We have developed a Python module, screening_mgmt, which is a lightweight tool for flexible data retrieval, analysis, and storage for different screening assays in one central database. The module reads custom-made analysis scripts and plotting instructions, and it offers a graphical user interface to import, modify, and display the data in a uniform manner. During the test phase, we used this module for the management of 10,000 data points of various origins. It has provided a practical, user-friendly tool for sharing and exchanging information between researchers. © 2014 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  7. The Protein Maker: an automated system for high-throughput parallel purification

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, Eric R.; Begley, Darren W.; Anderson, Vanessa; Raymond, Amy C.; Haffner, Taryn E.; Robinson, John I.; Edwards, Thomas E.; Duncan, Natalie; Gerdts, Cory J.; Mixon, Mark B.; Nollert, Peter; Staker, Bart L.; Stewart, Lance J.

    2011-01-01

    The Protein Maker instrument addresses a critical bottleneck in structural genomics by allowing automated purification and buffer testing of multiple protein targets in parallel with a single instrument. Here, the use of this instrument to (i) purify multiple influenza-virus proteins in parallel for crystallization trials and (ii) identify optimal lysis-buffer conditions prior to large-scale protein purification is described. The Protein Maker is an automated purification system developed by Emerald BioSystems for high-throughput parallel purification of proteins and antibodies. This instrument allows multiple load, wash and elution buffers to be used in parallel along independent lines for up to 24 individual samples. To demonstrate its utility, its use in the purification of five recombinant PB2 C-terminal domains from various subtypes of the influenza A virus is described. Three of these constructs crystallized and one diffracted X-rays to sufficient resolution for structure determination and deposition in the Protein Data Bank. Methods for screening lysis buffers for a cytochrome P450 from a pathogenic fungus prior to upscaling expression and purification are also described. The Protein Maker has become a valuable asset within the Seattle Structural Genomics Center for Infectious Disease (SSGCID) and hence is a potentially valuable tool for a variety of high-throughput protein-purification applications

  8. Robotic liquid handling and automation in epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaisford, Wendy

    2012-10-01

    Automated liquid-handling robots and high-throughput screening (HTS) are widely used in the pharmaceutical industry for the screening of large compound libraries, small molecules for activity against disease-relevant target pathways, or proteins. HTS robots capable of low-volume dispensing reduce assay setup times and provide highly accurate and reproducible dispensing, minimizing variation between sample replicates and eliminating the potential for manual error. Low-volume automated nanoliter dispensers ensure accuracy of pipetting within volume ranges that are difficult to achieve manually. In addition, they have the ability to potentially expand the range of screening conditions from often limited amounts of valuable sample, as well as reduce the usage of expensive reagents. The ability to accurately dispense lower volumes provides the potential to achieve a greater amount of information than could be otherwise achieved using manual dispensing technology. With the emergence of the field of epigenetics, an increasing number of drug discovery companies are beginning to screen compound libraries against a range of epigenetic targets. This review discusses the potential for the use of low-volume liquid handling robots, for molecular biological applications such as quantitative PCR and epigenetics.

  9. A Decision Support Framework for Automated Screening of Diabetic Retinopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available The early signs of diabetic retinopathy (DR are depicted by microaneurysms among other signs. A prompt diagnosis when the disease is at the early stage can help prevent irreversible damages to the diabetic eye. In this paper, we propose a decision support system (DSS for automated screening of early signs of diabetic retinopathy. Classification schemes for deducing the presence or absence of DR are developed and tested. The detection rule is based on binary-hypothesis testing problem which simplifies the problem to yes/no decisions. An analysis of the performance of the Bayes optimality criteria applied to DR is also presented. The proposed DSS is evaluated on the real-world data. The results suggest that by biasing the classifier towards DR detection, it is possible to make the classifier achieve good sensitivity.

  10. A Smartphone App to Screen for HIV-Related Neurocognitive Impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robbins, Reuben N; Brown, Henry; Ehlers, Andries; Joska, John A; Thomas, Kevin G F; Burgess, Rhonda; Byrd, Desiree; Morgello, Susan

    2014-02-01

    Neurocognitive Impairment (NCI) is one of the most common complications of HIV-infection, and has serious medical and functional consequences. However, screening for it is not routine and NCI often goes undiagnosed. Screening for NCI in HIV disease faces numerous challenges, such as limited screening tests, the need for specialized equipment and apparatuses, and highly trained personnel to administer, score and interpret screening tests. To address these challenges, we developed a novel smartphone-based screening tool, NeuroScreen , to detect HIV-related NCI that includes an easy-to-use graphical user interface with ten highly automated neuropsychological tests. To examine NeuroScreen's : 1) acceptability among patients and different potential users; 2) test construct and criterion validity; and 3) sensitivity and specificity to detect NCI. Fifty HIV+ individuals were administered a gold-standard neuropsychological test battery, designed to detect HIV-related NCI, and NeuroScreen . HIV+ test participants and eight potential provider-users of NeuroScreen were asked about its acceptability. There was a high level of acceptability of NeuroScreen by patients and potential provider-users. Moderate to high correlations between individual NeuroScreen tests and paper-and-pencil tests assessing the same cognitive domains were observed. NeuroScreen also demonstrated high sensitivity to detect NCI. NeuroScreen, a highly automated, easy-to-use smartphone-based screening test to detect NCI among HIV patients and usable by a range of healthcare personnel could help make routine screening for HIV-related NCI feasible. While NeuroScreen demonstrated robust psychometric properties and acceptability, further testing with larger and less neurocognitively impaired samples is warranted.

  11. Development of a computer-based automated pure tone hearing screening device: a preliminary clinical trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gan, Kok Beng; Azeez, Dhifaf; Umat, Cila; Ali, Mohd Alauddin Mohd; Wahab, Noor Alaudin Abdul; Mukari, Siti Zamratol Mai-Sarah

    2012-10-01

    Hearing screening is important for the early detection of hearing loss. The requirements of specialized equipment, skilled personnel, and quiet environments for valid screening results limit its application in schools and health clinics. This study aimed to develop an automated hearing screening kit (auto-kit) with the capability of realtime noise level monitoring to ensure that the screening is performed in an environment that conforms to the standard. The auto-kit consists of a laptop, a 24-bit resolution sound card, headphones, a microphone, and a graphical user interface, which is calibrated according to the American National Standards Institute S3.6-2004 standard. The auto-kit can present four test tones (500, 1000, 2000, and 4000 Hz) at 25 or 40 dB HL screening cut-off level. The clinical results at 40 dB HL screening cut-off level showed that the auto-kit has a sensitivity of 92.5% and a specificity of 75.0%. Because the 500 Hz test tone is not included in the standard hearing screening procedure, it can be excluded from the auto-kit test procedure. The exclusion of 500 Hz test tone improved the specificity of the auto-kit from 75.0% to 92.3%, which suggests that the auto-kit could be a valid hearing screening device. In conclusion, the auto-kit may be a valuable hearing screening tool, especially in countries where resources are limited.

  12. Modular high-throughput test stand for versatile screening of thin-film materials libraries

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thienhaus, Sigurd; Hamann, Sven; Ludwig, Alfred

    2011-01-01

    Versatile high-throughput characterization tools are required for the development of new materials using combinatorial techniques. Here, we describe a modular, high-throughput test stand for the screening of thin-film materials libraries, which can carry out automated electrical, magnetic and magnetoresistance measurements in the temperature range of −40 to 300 °C. As a proof of concept, we measured the temperature-dependent resistance of Fe–Pd–Mn ferromagnetic shape-memory alloy materials libraries, revealing reversible martensitic transformations and the associated transformation temperatures. Magneto-optical screening measurements of a materials library identify ferromagnetic samples, whereas resistivity maps support the discovery of new phases. A distance sensor in the same setup allows stress measurements in materials libraries deposited on cantilever arrays. A combination of these methods offers a fast and reliable high-throughput characterization technology for searching for new materials. Using this approach, a composition region has been identified in the Fe–Pd–Mn system that combines ferromagnetism and martensitic transformation.

  13. High content analysis of phagocytic activity and cell morphology with PuntoMorph.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Ali, Hassan; Gao, Han; Dalby-Hansen, Camilla; Peters, Vanessa Ann; Shi, Yan; Brambilla, Roberta

    2017-11-01

    Phagocytosis is essential for maintenance of normal homeostasis and healthy tissue. As such, it is a therapeutic target for a wide range of clinical applications. The development of phenotypic screens targeting phagocytosis has lagged behind, however, due to the difficulties associated with image-based quantification of phagocytic activity. We present a robust algorithm and cell-based assay system for high content analysis of phagocytic activity. The method utilizes fluorescently labeled beads as a phagocytic substrate with defined physical properties. The algorithm employs statistical modeling to determine the mean fluorescence of individual beads within each image, and uses the information to conduct an accurate count of phagocytosed beads. In addition, the algorithm conducts detailed and sophisticated analysis of cellular morphology, making it a standalone tool for high content screening. We tested our assay system using microglial cultures. Our results recapitulated previous findings on the effects of microglial stimulation on cell morphology and phagocytic activity. Moreover, our cell-level analysis revealed that the two phenotypes associated with microglial activation, specifically cell body hypertrophy and increased phagocytic activity, are not highly correlated. This novel finding suggests the two phenotypes may be under the control of distinct signaling pathways. We demonstrate that our assay system outperforms preexisting methods for quantifying phagocytic activity in multiple dimensions including speed, accuracy, and resolution. We provide a framework to facilitate the development of high content assays suitable for drug screening. For convenience, we implemented our algorithm in a standalone software package, PuntoMorph. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Verification testing of the compression performance of the HEVC screen content coding extensions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sullivan, Gary J.; Baroncini, Vittorio A.; Yu, Haoping; Joshi, Rajan L.; Liu, Shan; Xiu, Xiaoyu; Xu, Jizheng

    2017-09-01

    This paper reports on verification testing of the coding performance of the screen content coding (SCC) extensions of the High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) standard (Rec. ITU-T H.265 | ISO/IEC 23008-2 MPEG-H Part 2). The coding performance of HEVC screen content model (SCM) reference software is compared with that of the HEVC test model (HM) without the SCC extensions, as well as with the Advanced Video Coding (AVC) joint model (JM) reference software, for both lossy and mathematically lossless compression using All-Intra (AI), Random Access (RA), and Lowdelay B (LB) encoding structures and using similar encoding techniques. Video test sequences in 1920×1080 RGB 4:4:4, YCbCr 4:4:4, and YCbCr 4:2:0 colour sampling formats with 8 bits per sample are tested in two categories: "text and graphics with motion" (TGM) and "mixed" content. For lossless coding, the encodings are evaluated in terms of relative bit-rate savings. For lossy compression, subjective testing was conducted at 4 quality levels for each coding case, and the test results are presented through mean opinion score (MOS) curves. The relative coding performance is also evaluated in terms of Bjøntegaard-delta (BD) bit-rate savings for equal PSNR quality. The perceptual tests and objective metric measurements show a very substantial benefit in coding efficiency for the SCC extensions, and provided consistent results with a high degree of confidence. For TGM video, the estimated bit-rate savings ranged from 60-90% relative to the JM and 40-80% relative to the HM, depending on the AI/RA/LB configuration category and colour sampling format.

  15. Information management for high content live cell imaging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    White Michael RH

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background High content live cell imaging experiments are able to track the cellular localisation of labelled proteins in multiple live cells over a time course. Experiments using high content live cell imaging will generate multiple large datasets that are often stored in an ad-hoc manner. This hinders identification of previously gathered data that may be relevant to current analyses. Whilst solutions exist for managing image data, they are primarily concerned with storage and retrieval of the images themselves and not the data derived from the images. There is therefore a requirement for an information management solution that facilitates the indexing of experimental metadata and results of high content live cell imaging experiments. Results We have designed and implemented a data model and information management solution for the data gathered through high content live cell imaging experiments. Many of the experiments to be stored measure the translocation of fluorescently labelled proteins from cytoplasm to nucleus in individual cells. The functionality of this database has been enhanced by the addition of an algorithm that automatically annotates results of these experiments with the timings of translocations and periods of any oscillatory translocations as they are uploaded to the repository. Testing has shown the algorithm to perform well with a variety of previously unseen data. Conclusion Our repository is a fully functional example of how high throughput imaging data may be effectively indexed and managed to address the requirements of end users. By implementing the automated analysis of experimental results, we have provided a clear impetus for individuals to ensure that their data forms part of that which is stored in the repository. Although focused on imaging, the solution provided is sufficiently generic to be applied to other functional proteomics and genomics experiments. The software is available from: fhttp://code.google.com/p/livecellim/

  16. Is high automation a dead end? Cutbacks in production overengineering

    OpenAIRE

    Lay, Gunter; Schirrmeister, Elna

    2001-01-01

    For quite some time it seemed the trend towards high automation in the wage-intensive German economy showed no signs of slowing down. However, in practice it turns out that more than a third of companies which have chosen automated solutions have not had their expectations fulfilled. Many of these companies have already made reductions in automation levels for particular subsystems. The most important reason for dissatisfaction is the lack of flexibility in highly automated systems. Flexibili...

  17. Automated recycling of chemistry for virtual screening and library design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vainio, Mikko J; Kogej, Thierry; Raubacher, Florian

    2012-07-23

    An early stage drug discovery project needs to identify a number of chemically diverse and attractive compounds. These hit compounds are typically found through high-throughput screening campaigns. The diversity of the chemical libraries used in screening is therefore important. In this study, we describe a virtual high-throughput screening system called Virtual Library. The system automatically "recycles" validated synthetic protocols and available starting materials to generate a large number of virtual compound libraries, and allows for fast searches in the generated libraries using a 2D fingerprint based screening method. Virtual Library links the returned virtual hit compounds back to experimental protocols to quickly assess the synthetic accessibility of the hits. The system can be used as an idea generator for library design to enrich the screening collection and to explore the structure-activity landscape around a specific active compound.

  18. Automating the radiographic NDT process

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aman, J.K.

    1986-01-01

    Automation, the removal of the human element in inspection, has not been generally applied to film radiographic NDT. The justication for automating is not only productivity but also reliability of results. Film remains in the automated system of the future because of its extremely high image content, approximately 8 x 10 9 bits per 14 x 17. The equivalent to 2200 computer floppy discs. Parts handling systems and robotics applied for manufacturing and some NDT modalities, should now be applied to film radiographic NDT systems. Automatic film handling can be achieved with the daylight NDT film handling system. Automatic film processing is becoming the standard in industry and can be coupled to the daylight system. Robots offer the opportunity to automate fully the exposure step. Finally, computer aided interpretation appears on the horizon. A unit which laser scans a 14 x 17 (inch) film in 6 - 8 seconds can digitize film information for further manipulation and possible automatic interrogations (computer aided interpretation). The system called FDRS (for Film Digital Radiography System) is moving toward 50 micron (*approx* 16 lines/mm) resolution. This is believed to meet the need of the majority of image content needs. We expect the automated system to appear first in parts (modules) as certain operations are automated. The future will see it all come together in an automated film radiographic NDT system (author) [pt

  19. Development of a data-processing method based on Bayesian k-means clustering to discriminate aneugens and clastogens in a high-content micronucleus assay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Z H; Li, N; Rao, K F; Liu, C T; Huang, Y; Ma, M; Wang, Z J

    2018-03-01

    Genotoxicants can be identified as aneugens and clastogens through a micronucleus (MN) assay. The current high-content screening-based MN assays usually discriminate an aneugen from a clastogen based on only one parameter, such as the MN size, intensity, or morphology, which yields low accuracies (70-84%) because each of these parameters may contribute to the results. Therefore, the development of an algorithm that can synthesize high-dimensionality data to attain comparative results is important. To improve the automation and accuracy of detection using the current parameter-based mode of action (MoA), the MN MoA signatures of 20 chemicals were systematically recruited in this study to develop an algorithm. The results of the algorithm showed very good agreement (93.58%) between the prediction and reality, indicating that the proposed algorithm is a validated analytical platform for the rapid and objective acquisition of genotoxic MoA messages.

  20. A high-resolution and intelligent dead pixel detection scheme for an electrowetting display screen

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, ZhiJie; Luo, JianKun; Zhao, WenWen; Cao, Yang; Lin, WeiJie; Zhou, GuoFu

    2018-02-01

    Electrowetting display technology is realized by tuning the surface energy of a hydrophobic surface by applying a voltage based on electrowetting mechanism. With the rapid development of the electrowetting industry, how to analyze efficiently the quality of an electrowetting display screen has a very important significance. There are two kinds of dead pixels on the electrowetting display screen. One is that the oil of pixel cannot completely cover the display area. The other is that indium tin oxide semiconductor wire connecting pixel and foil was burned. In this paper, we propose a high-resolution and intelligent dead pixel detection scheme for an electrowetting display screen. First, we built an aperture ratio-capacitance model based on the electrical characteristics of electrowetting display. A field-programmable gate array is used as the integrated logic hub of the system for a highly reliable and efficient control of the circuit. Dead pixels can be detected and displayed on a PC-based 2D graphical interface in real time. The proposed dead pixel detection scheme reported in this work has promise in automating electrowetting display experiments.

  1. Screening for anabolic steroids in urine of forensic cases using fully automated solid phase extraction and LC-MS-MS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersen, David W; Linnet, Kristian

    2014-01-01

    A screening method for 18 frequently measured exogenous anabolic steroids and the testosterone/epitestosterone (T/E) ratio in forensic cases has been developed and validated. The method involves a fully automated sample preparation including enzyme treatment, addition of internal standards and solid phase extraction followed by analysis by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS-MS) using electrospray ionization with adduct formation for two compounds. Urine samples from 580 forensic cases were analyzed to determine the T/E ratio and occurrence of exogenous anabolic steroids. Extraction recoveries ranged from 77 to 95%, matrix effects from 48 to 78%, overall process efficiencies from 40 to 54% and the lower limit of identification ranged from 2 to 40 ng/mL. In the 580 urine samples analyzed from routine forensic cases, 17 (2.9%) were found positive for one or more anabolic steroids. Only seven different steroids including testosterone were found in the material, suggesting that only a small number of common steroids are likely to occur in a forensic context. The steroids were often in high concentrations (>100 ng/mL), and a combination of steroids and/or other drugs of abuse were seen in the majority of cases. The method presented serves as a fast and automated screening procedure, proving the suitability of LC-MS-MS for analyzing anabolic steroids. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  2. Evaluation of an automated connective tissue disease screening assay in Korean patients with systemic rheumatic diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeong, Seri; Yang, Heeyoung; Hwang, Hyunyong

    2017-01-01

    This study aimed to evaluate the diagnostic utilities of the automated connective tissues disease screening assay, CTD screen, in patients with systemic rheumatic diseases. A total of 1093 serum samples were assayed using CTD screen and indirect immunofluorescent (IIF) methods. Among them, 162 were diagnosed with systemic rheumatic disease, including rheumatoid arthritis (RA), systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), and mixed connective tissue disease (MCT). The remaining 931 with non-systemic rheumatic disease were assigned to the control group. The median ratios of CTD screen tests were significantly higher in the systemic rheumatic disease group than in the control group. The positive likelihood ratios of the CTD screen were higher than those of IIF in patients with total rheumatic diseases (4.1 vs. 1.6), including SLE (24.3 vs. 10.7). The areas under the receiver operating characteristic curves (ROC-AUCs) of the CTD screen for discriminating total rheumatic diseases, RA, SLE, and MCT from controls were 0.68, 0.56, 0.92 and 0.80, respectively. The ROC-AUCs of the combinations with IIF were significantly higher in patients with total rheumatic diseases (0.72) and MCT (0.85) than in those of the CTD screen alone. Multivariate analysis indicated that both the CTD screen and IIF were independent variables for predicting systemic rheumatic disease. CTD screen alone and in combination with IIF were a valuable diagnostic tool for predicting systemic rheumatic diseases, particularly for SLE.

  3. Evaluation of an automated connective tissue disease screening assay in Korean patients with systemic rheumatic diseases.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seri Jeong

    Full Text Available This study aimed to evaluate the diagnostic utilities of the automated connective tissues disease screening assay, CTD screen, in patients with systemic rheumatic diseases. A total of 1093 serum samples were assayed using CTD screen and indirect immunofluorescent (IIF methods. Among them, 162 were diagnosed with systemic rheumatic disease, including rheumatoid arthritis (RA, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE, and mixed connective tissue disease (MCT. The remaining 931 with non-systemic rheumatic disease were assigned to the control group. The median ratios of CTD screen tests were significantly higher in the systemic rheumatic disease group than in the control group. The positive likelihood ratios of the CTD screen were higher than those of IIF in patients with total rheumatic diseases (4.1 vs. 1.6, including SLE (24.3 vs. 10.7. The areas under the receiver operating characteristic curves (ROC-AUCs of the CTD screen for discriminating total rheumatic diseases, RA, SLE, and MCT from controls were 0.68, 0.56, 0.92 and 0.80, respectively. The ROC-AUCs of the combinations with IIF were significantly higher in patients with total rheumatic diseases (0.72 and MCT (0.85 than in those of the CTD screen alone. Multivariate analysis indicated that both the CTD screen and IIF were independent variables for predicting systemic rheumatic disease. CTD screen alone and in combination with IIF were a valuable diagnostic tool for predicting systemic rheumatic diseases, particularly for SLE.

  4. Automated detection of retinal disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helmchen, Lorens A; Lehmann, Harold P; Abràmoff, Michael D

    2014-11-01

    Nearly 4 in 10 Americans with diabetes currently fail to undergo recommended annual retinal exams, resulting in tens of thousands of cases of blindness that could have been prevented. Advances in automated retinal disease detection could greatly reduce the burden of labor-intensive dilated retinal examinations by ophthalmologists and optometrists and deliver diagnostic services at lower cost. As the current availability of ophthalmologists and optometrists is inadequate to screen all patients at risk every year, automated screening systems deployed in primary care settings and even in patients' homes could fill the current gap in supply. Expanding screens to all patients at risk by switching to automated detection systems would in turn yield significantly higher rates of detecting and treating diabetic retinopathy per dilated retinal examination. Fewer diabetic patients would develop complications such as blindness, while ophthalmologists could focus on more complex cases.

  5. High-Content Screening in hPSC-Neural Progenitors Identifies Drug Candidates that Inhibit Zika Virus Infection in Fetal-like Organoids and Adult Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Ting; Tan, Lei; Cederquist, Gustav Y; Fan, Yujie; Hartley, Brigham J; Mukherjee, Suranjit; Tomishima, Mark; Brennand, Kristen J; Zhang, Qisheng; Schwartz, Robert E; Evans, Todd; Studer, Lorenz; Chen, Shuibing

    2017-08-03

    Zika virus (ZIKV) infects fetal and adult human brain and is associated with serious neurological complications. To date, no therapeutic treatment is available to treat ZIKV-infected patients. We performed a high-content chemical screen using human pluripotent stem cell-derived cortical neural progenitor cells (hNPCs) and found that hippeastrine hydrobromide (HH) and amodiaquine dihydrochloride dihydrate (AQ) can inhibit ZIKV infection in hNPCs. Further validation showed that HH also rescues ZIKV-induced growth and differentiation defects in hNPCs and human fetal-like forebrain organoids. Finally, HH and AQ inhibit ZIKV infection in adult mouse brain in vivo. Strikingly, HH suppresses viral propagation when administered to adult mice with active ZIKV infection, highlighting its therapeutic potential. Our approach highlights the power of stem cell-based screens and validation in human forebrain organoids and mouse models in identifying drug candidates for treating ZIKV infection and related neurological complications in fetal and adult patients. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. HC StratoMineR: A Web-Based Tool for the Rapid Analysis of High-Content Datasets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omta, Wienand A; van Heesbeen, Roy G; Pagliero, Romina J; van der Velden, Lieke M; Lelieveld, Daphne; Nellen, Mehdi; Kramer, Maik; Yeong, Marley; Saeidi, Amir M; Medema, Rene H; Spruit, Marco; Brinkkemper, Sjaak; Klumperman, Judith; Egan, David A

    2016-10-01

    High-content screening (HCS) can generate large multidimensional datasets and when aligned with the appropriate data mining tools, it can yield valuable insights into the mechanism of action of bioactive molecules. However, easy-to-use data mining tools are not widely available, with the result that these datasets are frequently underutilized. Here, we present HC StratoMineR, a web-based tool for high-content data analysis. It is a decision-supportive platform that guides even non-expert users through a high-content data analysis workflow. HC StratoMineR is built by using My Structured Query Language for storage and querying, PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor as the main programming language, and jQuery for additional user interface functionality. R is used for statistical calculations, logic and data visualizations. Furthermore, C++ and graphical processor unit power is diffusely embedded in R by using the rcpp and rpud libraries for operations that are computationally highly intensive. We show that we can use HC StratoMineR for the analysis of multivariate data from a high-content siRNA knock-down screen and a small-molecule screen. It can be used to rapidly filter out undesirable data; to select relevant data; and to perform quality control, data reduction, data exploration, morphological hit picking, and data clustering. Our results demonstrate that HC StratoMineR can be used to functionally categorize HCS hits and, thus, provide valuable information for hit prioritization.

  7. Asleep at the automated wheel-Sleepiness and fatigue during highly automated driving.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogelpohl, Tobias; Kühn, Matthias; Hummel, Thomas; Vollrath, Mark

    2018-03-20

    pose a serious hazard in complex take-over situations where situation awareness is required to prepare for threats. Driver fatigue monitoring or controllable distraction through non-driving tasks could be necessary to ensure alertness and availability during highly automated driving. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Development and Implementation of a High-Throughput High-Content Screening Assay to Identify Inhibitors of Androgen Receptor Nuclear Localization in Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Minh M.; Dar, Javid A.; Ai, Junkui; Wang, Yujuan; Masoodi, Khalid Z.; Shun, Tongying; Shinde, Sunita; Camarco, Daniel P.; Hua, Yun; Huryn, Donna M.; Wilson, Gabriela Mustata; Lazo, John S.; Nelson, Joel B.; Wipf, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Patients with castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) can be treated with abiraterone, a potent inhibitor of androgen synthesis, or enzalutamide, a second-generation androgen receptor (AR) antagonist, both targeting AR signaling. However, most patients relapse after several months of therapy and a majority of patients with relapsed CRPC tumors express the AR target gene prostate-specific antigen (PSA), suggesting that AR signaling is reactivated and can be targeted again to inhibit the relapsed tumors. Novel small molecules capable of inhibiting AR function may lead to urgently needed therapies for patients resistant to abiraterone, enzalutamide, and/or other previously approved antiandrogen therapies. Here, we describe a high-throughput high-content screening (HCS) campaign to identify small-molecule inhibitors of AR nuclear localization in the C4-2 CRPC cell line stably transfected with GFP-AR-GFP (2GFP-AR). The implementation of this HCS assay to screen a National Institutes of Health library of 219,055 compounds led to the discovery of 3 small molecules capable of inhibiting AR nuclear localization and function in C4-2 cells, demonstrating the feasibility of using this cell-based phenotypic assay to identify small molecules targeting the subcellular localization of AR. Furthermore, the three hit compounds provide opportunities to develop novel AR drugs with potential for therapeutic intervention in CRPC patients who have relapsed after treatment with antiandrogens, such as abiraterone and/or enzalutamide. PMID:27187604

  9. Auto Detection For High Level Water Content For Oil Well

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janier, Josefina Barnachea; Jumaludin, Zainul Arifin B.

    2010-06-01

    Auto detection of high level water content for oil well is a system that measures the percentage of water in crude oil. This paper aims to discuss an auto detection system for measuring the content of water level in crude oil which is applicable for offshore and onshore oil operations. Data regarding water level content from wells can be determined by using automation thus, well with high water level can be determined immediately whether to be closed or not from operations. Theoretically the system measures the percentage of two- fluid mixture where the fluids have different electrical conductivities which are water and crude oil. The system made use of grid sensor which is a grid pattern like of horizontal and vertical wires. When water occupies the space at the intersection of vertical and horizontal wires, an electrical signal is detected which proved that water completed the circuit path in the system. The electrical signals are counted whereas the percentage of water is determined from the total electrical signals detected over electrical signals provided. Simulation of the system using the MultiSIM showed that the system provided the desired result.

  10. A high content screening assay to predict human drug-induced liver injury during drug discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Persson, Mikael; Løye, Anni F; Mow, Tomas; Hornberg, Jorrit J

    2013-01-01

    Adverse drug reactions are a major cause for failures of drug development programs, drug withdrawals and use restrictions. Early hazard identification and diligent risk avoidance strategies are therefore essential. For drug-induced liver injury (DILI), this is difficult using conventional safety testing. To reduce the risk for DILI, drug candidates with a high risk need to be identified and deselected. And, to produce drug candidates without that risk associated, risk factors need to be assessed early during drug discovery, such that lead series can be optimized on safety parameters. This requires methods that allow for medium-to-high throughput compound profiling and that generate quantitative results suitable to establish structure-activity-relationships during lead optimization programs. We present the validation of such a method, a novel high content screening assay based on six parameters (nuclei counts, nuclear area, plasma membrane integrity, lysosomal activity, mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP), and mitochondrial area) using ~100 drugs of which the clinical hepatotoxicity profile is known. We find that a 100-fold TI between the lowest toxic concentration and the therapeutic Cmax is optimal to classify compounds as hepatotoxic or non-hepatotoxic, based on the individual parameters. Most parameters have ~50% sensitivity and ~90% specificity. Drugs hitting ≥2 parameters at a concentration below 100-fold their Cmax are typically hepatotoxic, whereas non-hepatotoxic drugs typically hit based on nuclei count, MMP and human Cmax, we identified an area without a single false positive, while maintaining 45% sensitivity. Hierarchical clustering using the multi-parametric dataset roughly separates toxic from non-toxic compounds. We employ the assay in discovery projects to prioritize novel compound series during hit-to-lead, to steer away from a DILI risk during lead optimization, for risk assessment towards candidate selection and to provide guidance of safe

  11. DG-AMMOS: a new tool to generate 3d conformation of small molecules using distance geometry and automated molecular mechanics optimization for in silico screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagorce, David; Pencheva, Tania; Villoutreix, Bruno O; Miteva, Maria A

    2009-11-13

    Discovery of new bioactive molecules that could enter drug discovery programs or that could serve as chemical probes is a very complex and costly endeavor. Structure-based and ligand-based in silico screening approaches are nowadays extensively used to complement experimental screening approaches in order to increase the effectiveness of the process and facilitating the screening of thousands or millions of small molecules against a biomolecular target. Both in silico screening methods require as input a suitable chemical compound collection and most often the 3D structure of the small molecules has to be generated since compounds are usually delivered in 1D SMILES, CANSMILES or in 2D SDF formats. Here, we describe the new open source program DG-AMMOS which allows the generation of the 3D conformation of small molecules using Distance Geometry and their energy minimization via Automated Molecular Mechanics Optimization. The program is validated on the Astex dataset, the ChemBridge Diversity database and on a number of small molecules with known crystal structures extracted from the Cambridge Structural Database. A comparison with the free program Balloon and the well-known commercial program Omega generating the 3D of small molecules is carried out. The results show that the new free program DG-AMMOS is a very efficient 3D structure generator engine. DG-AMMOS provides fast, automated and reliable access to the generation of 3D conformation of small molecules and facilitates the preparation of a compound collection prior to high-throughput virtual screening computations. The validation of DG-AMMOS on several different datasets proves that generated structures are generally of equal quality or sometimes better than structures obtained by other tested methods.

  12. Automation in biological crystallization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stewart, Patrick Shaw; Mueller-Dieckmann, Jochen

    2014-06-01

    Crystallization remains the bottleneck in the crystallographic process leading from a gene to a three-dimensional model of the encoded protein or RNA. Automation of the individual steps of a crystallization experiment, from the preparation of crystallization cocktails for initial or optimization screens to the imaging of the experiments, has been the response to address this issue. Today, large high-throughput crystallization facilities, many of them open to the general user community, are capable of setting up thousands of crystallization trials per day. It is thus possible to test multiple constructs of each target for their ability to form crystals on a production-line basis. This has improved success rates and made crystallization much more convenient. High-throughput crystallization, however, cannot relieve users of the task of producing samples of high quality. Moreover, the time gained from eliminating manual preparations must now be invested in the careful evaluation of the increased number of experiments. The latter requires a sophisticated data and laboratory information-management system. A review of the current state of automation at the individual steps of crystallization with specific attention to the automation of optimization is given.

  13. A chemical screen probing the relationship between mitochondrial content and cell size.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Toshimori Kitami

    Full Text Available The cellular content of mitochondria changes dynamically during development and in response to external stimuli, but the underlying mechanisms remain obscure. To systematically identify molecular probes and pathways that control mitochondrial abundance, we developed a high-throughput imaging assay that tracks both the per cell mitochondrial content and the cell size in confluent human umbilical vein endothelial cells. We screened 28,786 small molecules and observed that hundreds of small molecules are capable of increasing or decreasing the cellular content of mitochondria in a manner proportionate to cell size, revealing stereotyped control of these parameters. However, only a handful of compounds dissociate this relationship. We focus on one such compound, BRD6897, and demonstrate through secondary assays that it increases the cellular content of mitochondria as evidenced by fluorescence microscopy, mitochondrial protein content, and respiration, even after rigorous correction for cell size, cell volume, or total protein content. BRD6897 increases uncoupled respiration 1.6-fold in two different, non-dividing cell types. Based on electron microscopy, BRD6897 does not alter the percent of cytoplasmic area occupied by mitochondria, but instead, induces a striking increase in the electron density of existing mitochondria. The mechanism is independent of known transcriptional programs and is likely to be related to a blockade in the turnover of mitochondrial proteins. At present the molecular target of BRD6897 remains to be elucidated, but if identified, could reveal an important additional mechanism that governs mitochondrial biogenesis and turnover.

  14. Stepwise strategy to improve Cervical Cancer Screening Adherence (SCAN-CC): automated text messages, phone calls and face-to-face interviews: protocol of a population-based randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Firmino-Machado, João; Mendes, Romeu; Moreira, Amélia; Lunet, Nuno

    2017-10-05

    Screening is highly effective for cervical cancer prevention and control. Population-based screening programmes are widely implemented in high-income countries, although adherence is often low. In Portugal, just over half of the women adhere to cervical cancer screening, contributing for greater mortality rates than in other European countries. The most effective adherence raising strategies are based on patient reminders, small/mass media and face-to-face educational programmes, but sequential interventions targeting the general population have seldom been evaluated. The aim of this study is to assess the effectiveness of a stepwise approach, with increasing complexity and cost, to improve adherence to organised cervical cancer screening: step 1a-customised text message invitation; step 1b-customised automated phone call invitation; step 2-secretary phone call; step 3-family health professional phone call and face-to-face appointment. A population-based randomised controlled trial will be implemented in Portuguese urban and rural areas. Women eligible for cervical cancer screening will be randomised (1:1) to intervention and control. In the intervention group, women will be invited for screening through text messages, automated phone calls, manual phone calls and health professional appointments, to be applied sequentially to participants remaining non-adherent after each step. Control will be the standard of care (written letter). The primary outcome is the proportion of women adherent to screening after step 1 or sequences of steps from 1 to 3. The secondary outcomes are: proportion of women screened after each step (1a, 2 and 3); proportion of text messages/phone calls delivered; proportion of women previously screened in a private health institution who change to organised screening. The intervention and control groups will be compared based on intention-to-treat and per-protocol analyses. The study was approved by the Ethics Committee of the Northern Health

  15. Effectiveness of a Web-Based Screening and Fully Automated Brief Motivational Intervention for Adolescent Substance Use

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Arnaud, Nicolas; Baldus, Christiane; Elgán, Tobias H.

    2016-01-01

    ).Conclusions: Although the study is limited by a large drop-out, significant between-group effects for alcohol use indicate that targeted brief motivational intervention in a fully automated Web-based format can be effective to reduce drinking and lessen existing substance use service barriers for at...... of substance use among college students. However, the evidence is sparse among adolescents with at-risk use of alcohol and other drugs. Objective: This study evaluated the effectiveness of a targeted and fully automated Web-based brief motivational intervention with no face-to-face components on substance use......, and polydrug use. All outcome analyses were conducted with and without Expectation Maximization (EM) imputation of missing follow-up data. Results: In total, 2673 adolescents were screened and 1449 (54.2%) participants were randomized to the intervention or control group. After 3 months, 211 adolescents (14...

  16. Screen Miniatures as Icons for Backward Navigation in Content-Based Software.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boling, Elizabeth; Ma, Guoping; Tao, Chia-Wen; Askun, Cengiz; Green, Tim; Frick, Theodore; Schaumburg, Heike

    Users of content-based software programs, including hypertexts and instructional multimedia, rely on the navigation functions provided by the designers of those program. Typical navigation schemes use abstract symbols (arrows) to label basic navigational functions like moving forward or backward through screen displays. In a previous study, the…

  17. Modeled effects on permittivity measurements of water content in high surface area porous media

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jones, S.B.; Or, Dani

    2003-01-01

    Time domain reflectometry (TDR) has become an important measurement technique for determination of porous media water content and electrical conductivity due to its accuracy, fast response and automation capability. Water content is inferred from the measured bulk dielectric constant based on travel time analysis along simple transmission lines. TDR measurements in low surface area porous media accurately describe water content using an empirical relationship. Measurement discrepancies arise from dominating influences such as bound water due to high surface area, extreme aspect ratio particles or atypical water phase configuration. Our objectives were to highlight primary factors affecting dielectric permittivity measurements for water content determination in porous mixtures, and demonstrate the influence of these factors on mixture permittivity as predicted by a three-phase dielectric mixture model. Modeled results considering water binding, higher porosity, constituent geometry or phase configuration suggest any of these effects individually are capable of causing permittivity reduction, though all likely contribute in high surface area porous media

  18. Automated two-point dixon screening for the evaluation of hepatic steatosis and siderosis: comparison with R2*-relaxometry and chemical shift-based sequences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Henninger, B.; Rauch, S.; Schocke, M.; Jaschke, W.; Kremser, C. [Medical University of Innsbruck, Department of Radiology, Innsbruck (Austria); Zoller, H. [Medical University of Innsbruck, Department of Internal Medicine, Innsbruck (Austria); Kannengiesser, S. [Siemens AG, Healthcare Sector, MR Applications Development, Erlangen (Germany); Zhong, X. [Siemens Healthcare, MR R and D Collaborations, Atlanta, GA (United States); Reiter, G. [Siemens AG, Healthcare Sector, MR R and D Collaborations, Graz (Austria)

    2015-05-01

    To evaluate the automated two-point Dixon screening sequence for the detection and estimated quantification of hepatic iron and fat compared with standard sequences as a reference. One hundred and two patients with suspected diffuse liver disease were included in this prospective study. The following MRI protocol was used: 3D-T1-weighted opposed- and in-phase gradient echo with two-point Dixon reconstruction and dual-ratio signal discrimination algorithm (''screening'' sequence); fat-saturated, multi-gradient-echo sequence with 12 echoes; gradient-echo T1 FLASH opposed- and in-phase. Bland-Altman plots were generated and correlation coefficients were calculated to compare the sequences. The screening sequence diagnosed fat in 33, iron in 35 and a combination of both in 4 patients. Correlation between R2* values of the screening sequence and the standard relaxometry was excellent (r = 0.988). A slightly lower correlation (r = 0.978) was found between the fat fraction of the screening sequence and the standard sequence. Bland-Altman revealed systematically lower R2* values obtained from the screening sequence and higher fat fraction values obtained with the standard sequence with a rather high variability in agreement. The screening sequence is a promising method with fast diagnosis of the predominant liver disease. It is capable of estimating the amount of hepatic fat and iron comparable to standard methods. (orig.)

  19. Automated two-point dixon screening for the evaluation of hepatic steatosis and siderosis: comparison with R2*-relaxometry and chemical shift-based sequences

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Henninger, B.; Rauch, S.; Schocke, M.; Jaschke, W.; Kremser, C.; Zoller, H.; Kannengiesser, S.; Zhong, X.; Reiter, G.

    2015-01-01

    To evaluate the automated two-point Dixon screening sequence for the detection and estimated quantification of hepatic iron and fat compared with standard sequences as a reference. One hundred and two patients with suspected diffuse liver disease were included in this prospective study. The following MRI protocol was used: 3D-T1-weighted opposed- and in-phase gradient echo with two-point Dixon reconstruction and dual-ratio signal discrimination algorithm (''screening'' sequence); fat-saturated, multi-gradient-echo sequence with 12 echoes; gradient-echo T1 FLASH opposed- and in-phase. Bland-Altman plots were generated and correlation coefficients were calculated to compare the sequences. The screening sequence diagnosed fat in 33, iron in 35 and a combination of both in 4 patients. Correlation between R2* values of the screening sequence and the standard relaxometry was excellent (r = 0.988). A slightly lower correlation (r = 0.978) was found between the fat fraction of the screening sequence and the standard sequence. Bland-Altman revealed systematically lower R2* values obtained from the screening sequence and higher fat fraction values obtained with the standard sequence with a rather high variability in agreement. The screening sequence is a promising method with fast diagnosis of the predominant liver disease. It is capable of estimating the amount of hepatic fat and iron comparable to standard methods. (orig.)

  20. Assessment of the contents related to screening on Portuguese language websites providing information on breast and prostate cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Ferreira

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to assess the quality of the contents related to screening in a sample of websites providing information on breast and prostate cancer in the Portuguese language. The first 200 results of each cancer-specific Google search were considered. The accuracy of the screening contents was defined in accordance with the state of the art, and its readability was assessed. Most websites mentioned mammography as a method for breast cancer screening (80%, although only 28% referred to it as the only recommended method. Almost all websites mentioned PSA evaluation as a possible screening test, but correct information regarding its effectiveness was given in less than 10%. For both breast and prostate cancer screening contents, the potential for overdiagnosis and false positive results was seldom addressed, and the median readability index was approximately 70. There is ample margin for improving the quality of websites providing information on breast and prostate cancer in Portuguese.

  1. DG-AMMOS: A New tool to generate 3D conformation of small molecules using Distance Geometry and Automated Molecular Mechanics Optimization for in silico Screening

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Villoutreix Bruno O

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Discovery of new bioactive molecules that could enter drug discovery programs or that could serve as chemical probes is a very complex and costly endeavor. Structure-based and ligand-based in silico screening approaches are nowadays extensively used to complement experimental screening approaches in order to increase the effectiveness of the process and facilitating the screening of thousands or millions of small molecules against a biomolecular target. Both in silico screening methods require as input a suitable chemical compound collection and most often the 3D structure of the small molecules has to be generated since compounds are usually delivered in 1D SMILES, CANSMILES or in 2D SDF formats. Results Here, we describe the new open source program DG-AMMOS which allows the generation of the 3D conformation of small molecules using Distance Geometry and their energy minimization via Automated Molecular Mechanics Optimization. The program is validated on the Astex dataset, the ChemBridge Diversity database and on a number of small molecules with known crystal structures extracted from the Cambridge Structural Database. A comparison with the free program Balloon and the well-known commercial program Omega generating the 3D of small molecules is carried out. The results show that the new free program DG-AMMOS is a very efficient 3D structure generator engine. Conclusion DG-AMMOS provides fast, automated and reliable access to the generation of 3D conformation of small molecules and facilitates the preparation of a compound collection prior to high-throughput virtual screening computations. The validation of DG-AMMOS on several different datasets proves that generated structures are generally of equal quality or sometimes better than structures obtained by other tested methods.

  2. Screening of high-yield GTF yeast by N+-implantation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gao Yanhong; Lv Jiaping; Liu Lu; Li Shurong

    2009-01-01

    In this study, one of the highest chromium-resistant strain was screened from 12 tested brewer's yeast. N + ion implantation was used to mutate this yeast and screened high-yield GTF yeast strains with Chromium tolerance method. The mutagenesis was conducted by 50 KeV N + ion implantation with the doses of 1 x 2.6 x 10 13 , 2 x 2.6 x 10 13 , 3 x 2.6 x 10 13 , 4 x 2.6 x 10 13 , 5 x 2.6 x 10 13 and 6 x 2.6 x 10 13 ion/cm 2 . Results showed that the optimum dose was 4 x 2.6 x 10 13 ion/cm 2 , and a strain M11-1A11 of high-producing GTF was obtained. Its organic Cr content was increased by 22.4% than the original strain. Its fermentation property was stable after 5 generation transfer inoculation. (authors)

  3. Fast and accurate automated cell boundary determination for fluorescence microscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arce, Stephen Hugo; Wu, Pei-Hsun; Tseng, Yiider

    2013-07-01

    Detailed measurement of cell phenotype information from digital fluorescence images has the potential to greatly advance biomedicine in various disciplines such as patient diagnostics or drug screening. Yet, the complexity of cell conformations presents a major barrier preventing effective determination of cell boundaries, and introduces measurement error that propagates throughout subsequent assessment of cellular parameters and statistical analysis. State-of-the-art image segmentation techniques that require user-interaction, prolonged computation time and specialized training cannot adequately provide the support for high content platforms, which often sacrifice resolution to foster the speedy collection of massive amounts of cellular data. This work introduces a strategy that allows us to rapidly obtain accurate cell boundaries from digital fluorescent images in an automated format. Hence, this new method has broad applicability to promote biotechnology.

  4. Automation, parallelism, and robotics for proteomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alterovitz, Gil; Liu, Jonathan; Chow, Jijun; Ramoni, Marco F

    2006-07-01

    The speed of the human genome project (Lander, E. S., Linton, L. M., Birren, B., Nusbaum, C. et al., Nature 2001, 409, 860-921) was made possible, in part, by developments in automation of sequencing technologies. Before these technologies, sequencing was a laborious, expensive, and personnel-intensive task. Similarly, automation and robotics are changing the field of proteomics today. Proteomics is defined as the effort to understand and characterize proteins in the categories of structure, function and interaction (Englbrecht, C. C., Facius, A., Comb. Chem. High Throughput Screen. 2005, 8, 705-715). As such, this field nicely lends itself to automation technologies since these methods often require large economies of scale in order to achieve cost and time-saving benefits. This article describes some of the technologies and methods being applied in proteomics in order to facilitate automation within the field as well as in linking proteomics-based information with other related research areas.

  5. RODENT AND HUMAN NEUROPROGENITOR CELLS FOR HIGH-CONTENT SCREENS OF CHEMICAL EFFECTS ON PROLIFERATION AND APOPTOSIS

    Science.gov (United States)

    The objective of these experiments is to develop high-throughput screens for proliferation and apoptosis in order to compare rodent and human neuroprogenitor cell responses to potential developmental neurotoxicants. Effects of 4 chemicals on proliferation and apoptosis in mouse c...

  6. An automated tuberculosis screening strategy combining X-ray-based computer-aided detection and clinical information

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melendez, Jaime; Sánchez, Clara I.; Philipsen, Rick H. H. M.; Maduskar, Pragnya; Dawson, Rodney; Theron, Grant; Dheda, Keertan; van Ginneken, Bram

    2016-04-01

    Lack of human resources and radiological interpretation expertise impair tuberculosis (TB) screening programmes in TB-endemic countries. Computer-aided detection (CAD) constitutes a viable alternative for chest radiograph (CXR) reading. However, no automated techniques that exploit the additional clinical information typically available during screening exist. To address this issue and optimally exploit this information, a machine learning-based combination framework is introduced. We have evaluated this framework on a database containing 392 patient records from suspected TB subjects prospectively recruited in Cape Town, South Africa. Each record comprised a CAD score, automatically computed from a CXR, and 12 clinical features. Comparisons with strategies relying on either CAD scores or clinical information alone were performed. Our results indicate that the combination framework outperforms the individual strategies in terms of the area under the receiving operating characteristic curve (0.84 versus 0.78 and 0.72), specificity at 95% sensitivity (49% versus 24% and 31%) and negative predictive value (98% versus 95% and 96%). Thus, it is believed that combining CAD and clinical information to estimate the risk of active disease is a promising tool for TB screening.

  7. Identifying and Quantifying Cultural Factors That Matter to the IT Workforce: An Approach Based on Automated Content Analysis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmiedel, Theresa; Müller, Oliver; Debortoli, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    builds on 112,610 online reviews of Fortune 500 IT companies collected from Glassdoor, an online platform on which current and former employees can anonymously review companies and their management. We perform an automated content analysis to identify cultural factors that employees emphasize...

  8. Ultra-High-Throughput Screening of Natural Product Extracts to Identify Proapoptotic Inhibitors of Bcl-2 Family Proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassig, Christian A; Zeng, Fu-Yue; Kung, Paul; Kiankarimi, Mehrak; Kim, Sylvia; Diaz, Paul W; Zhai, Dayong; Welsh, Kate; Morshedian, Shana; Su, Ying; O'Keefe, Barry; Newman, David J; Rusman, Yudi; Kaur, Harneet; Salomon, Christine E; Brown, Susan G; Baire, Beeraiah; Michel, Andrew R; Hoye, Thomas R; Francis, Subhashree; Georg, Gunda I; Walters, Michael A; Divlianska, Daniela B; Roth, Gregory P; Wright, Amy E; Reed, John C

    2014-09-01

    Antiapoptotic Bcl-2 family proteins are validated cancer targets composed of six related proteins. From a drug discovery perspective, these are challenging targets that exert their cellular functions through protein-protein interactions (PPIs). Although several isoform-selective inhibitors have been developed using structure-based design or high-throughput screening (HTS) of synthetic chemical libraries, no large-scale screen of natural product collections has been reported. A competitive displacement fluorescence polarization (FP) screen of nearly 150,000 natural product extracts was conducted against all six antiapoptotic Bcl-2 family proteins using fluorochrome-conjugated peptide ligands that mimic functionally relevant PPIs. The screens were conducted in 1536-well format and displayed satisfactory overall HTS statistics, with Z'-factor values ranging from 0.72 to 0.83 and a hit confirmation rate between 16% and 64%. Confirmed active extracts were orthogonally tested in a luminescent assay for caspase-3/7 activation in tumor cells. Active extracts were resupplied, and effort toward the isolation of pure active components was initiated through iterative bioassay-guided fractionation. Several previously described altertoxins were isolated from a microbial source, and the pure compounds demonstrate activity in both Bcl-2 FP and caspase cellular assays. The studies demonstrate the feasibility of ultra-high-throughput screening using natural product sources and highlight some of the challenges associated with this approach. © 2014 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  9. Improved compliance by BPM-driven workflow automation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holzmüller-Laue, Silke; Göde, Bernd; Fleischer, Heidi; Thurow, Kerstin

    2014-12-01

    Using methods and technologies of business process management (BPM) for the laboratory automation has important benefits (i.e., the agility of high-level automation processes, rapid interdisciplinary prototyping and implementation of laboratory tasks and procedures, and efficient real-time process documentation). A principal goal of the model-driven development is the improved transparency of processes and the alignment of process diagrams and technical code. First experiences of using the business process model and notation (BPMN) show that easy-to-read graphical process models can achieve and provide standardization of laboratory workflows. The model-based development allows one to change processes quickly and an easy adaption to changing requirements. The process models are able to host work procedures and their scheduling in compliance with predefined guidelines and policies. Finally, the process-controlled documentation of complex workflow results addresses modern laboratory needs of quality assurance. BPMN 2.0 as an automation language to control every kind of activity or subprocess is directed to complete workflows in end-to-end relationships. BPMN is applicable as a system-independent and cross-disciplinary graphical language to document all methods in laboratories (i.e., screening procedures or analytical processes). That means, with the BPM standard, a communication method of sharing process knowledge of laboratories is also available. © 2014 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  10. Automating the radiographic NDT process

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aman, J.K.

    1988-01-01

    Automation, the removal of the human element in inspection has not been generally applied to film radiographic NDT. The justification for automation is not only productivity but also reliability of results. Film remains in the automated system of the future because of its extremely high image content, approximately 3x10 (to the power of nine) bits per 14x17. This is equivalent to 2200 computer floppy disks parts handling systems and robotics applied for manufacturing and some NDT modalities, should now be applied to film radiographic NDT systems. Automatic film handling can be achieved with the daylight NDT film handling system. Automatic film processing is becoming the standard in industry and can be coupled to the daylight system. Robots offer the opportunity to automate fully the exposure step. Finally, a computer aided interpretation appears on the horizon. A unit which laser scans a 14x27 (inch) film in 6-8 seconds can digitize film in information for further manipulation and possible automatic interrogations (computer aided interpretation). The system called FDRS (for film digital radiography system) is moving toward 50 micron (16 lines/mm) resolution. This is believed to meet the need of the majority of image content needs. (Author). 4 refs.; 21 figs

  11. DockoMatic: automated peptide analog creation for high throughput virtual screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacob, Reed B; Bullock, Casey W; Andersen, Tim; McDougal, Owen M

    2011-10-01

    The purpose of this manuscript is threefold: (1) to describe an update to DockoMatic that allows the user to generate cyclic peptide analog structure files based on protein database (pdb) files, (2) to test the accuracy of the peptide analog structure generation utility, and (3) to evaluate the high throughput capacity of DockoMatic. The DockoMatic graphical user interface interfaces with the software program Treepack to create user defined peptide analogs. To validate this approach, DockoMatic produced cyclic peptide analogs were tested for three-dimensional structure consistency and binding affinity against four experimentally determined peptide structure files available in the Research Collaboratory for Structural Bioinformatics database. The peptides used to evaluate this new functionality were alpha-conotoxins ImI, PnIA, and their published analogs. Peptide analogs were generated by DockoMatic and tested for their ability to bind to X-ray crystal structure models of the acetylcholine binding protein originating from Aplysia californica. The results, consisting of more than 300 simulations, demonstrate that DockoMatic predicts the binding energy of peptide structures to within 3.5 kcal mol(-1), and the orientation of bound ligand compares to within 1.8 Å root mean square deviation for ligand structures as compared to experimental data. Evaluation of high throughput virtual screening capacity demonstrated that Dockomatic can collect, evaluate, and summarize the output of 10,000 AutoDock jobs in less than 2 hours of computational time, while 100,000 jobs requires approximately 15 hours and 1,000,000 jobs is estimated to take up to a week. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Application of Fragment Ion Information as Further Evidence in Probabilistic Compound Screening Using Bayesian Statistics and Machine Learning: A Leap Toward Automation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Woldegebriel, M.; Zomer, P.; Mol, H.G.J.; Vivó-Truyols, G.

    2016-01-01

    In this work, we introduce an automated, efficient, and elegant model to combine all pieces of evidence (e.g., expected retention times, peak shapes, isotope distributions, fragment-to-parent ratio) obtained from liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS/MS) data for screening

  13. Using process-oriented interfaces for solving the automation paradox in highly automated navy vessels

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Diggelen, J. van; Post, W.; Rakhorst, M.; Plasmeijer, R.; Staal, W. van

    2014-01-01

    This paper describes a coherent engineering method for developing high level human machine interaction within a highly automated environment consisting of sensors, actuators, automatic situation assessors and planning devices. Our approach combines ideas from cognitive work analysis, cognitive

  14. Small-molecule fluorophores to detect cell-state switching in the context of high-throughput screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, Bridget K; Carrinski, Hyman A; Ahn, Young-Hoon; Kim, Yun Kyung; Gilbert, Tamara J; Fomina, Dina A; Schreiber, Stuart L; Chang, Young-Tae; Clemons, Paul A

    2008-04-02

    A small molecule capable of distinguishing the distinct states resulting from cellular differentiation would be of enormous value, for example, in efforts aimed at regenerative medicine. We screened a collection of fluorescent small molecules for the ability to distinguish the differentiated state of a mouse skeletal muscle cell line. High-throughput fluorescence-based screening of C2C12 myoblasts and myotubes resulted in the identification of six compounds with the desired selectivity, which was confirmed by high-content screening in the same cell states. The compound that resulted in the greatest fluorescence intensity difference between the cell states was used as the screening agent in a pilot screen of 84 kinase inhibitors, each present in four doses, for inhibition of myogenesis. Of the kinase inhibitors, 17 resulted in reduction of fluorescence at one or more concentrations; among the "hits" included known inhibitors of myogenesis, confirming that this compound is capable of detecting the differentiated myotube state. We suggest that the strategy of screening for screening agents reported here may be extended more broadly in the future.

  15. Evaluation of the URIT-2900 automated hematology analyzer for screening of thalassemia and hemoglobinopathies in Southeast Asian populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karnpean, Rossarin; Pansuwan, Anupong; Fucharoen, Goonnapa; Fucharoen, Supan

    2011-07-01

    The effectiveness of the URIT-2900 Hematology Analyzer for screening of hemoglobinopathies commonly found in Southeast Asian populations was examined. Appropriate cut-off values of MCV and MCH for screening of α(0) and β thalassemias were derived from the receiver operator characteristic curve conducted initially on 279 subjects with various thalassemia genotypes. Validation was performed additionally in a cohort of another unrelated 313 subjects. The best cut off values of MCV and MCH were found to be 78fL and 27pg, respectively. Using these cut off values in combination with the dichlorophenolindophenol test in screening of α(0) thalassemia, β thalassemia and Hb E in a cohort study revealed 100% sensitivity, 79.6% specificity, 80.0% positive predictive value and 100% negative predictive value. The combined blood cell counting using the URIT-2900 Automated Hematology Analyzer and dichlorophenolindophenol test is suitable for population screening of thalassemia and hemoglobinopathies in Southeast Asia. Copyright © 2011 The Canadian Society of Clinical Chemists. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Individual differences in the calibration of trust in automation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pop, Vlad L; Shrewsbury, Alex; Durso, Francis T

    2015-06-01

    The objective was to determine whether operators with an expectancy that automation is trustworthy are better at calibrating their trust to changes in the capabilities of automation, and if so, why. Studies suggest that individual differences in automation expectancy may be able to account for why changes in the capabilities of automation lead to a substantial change in trust for some, yet only a small change for others. In a baggage screening task, 225 participants searched for weapons in 200 X-ray images of luggage. Participants were assisted by an automated decision aid exhibiting different levels of reliability. Measures of expectancy that automation is trustworthy were used in conjunction with subjective measures of trust and perceived reliability to identify individual differences in trust calibration. Operators with high expectancy that automation is trustworthy were more sensitive to changes (both increases and decreases) in automation reliability. This difference was eliminated by manipulating the causal attribution of automation errors. Attributing the cause of automation errors to factors external to the automation fosters an understanding of tasks and situations in which automation differs in reliability and may lead to more appropriate trust. The development of interventions can lead to calibrated trust in automation. © 2014, Human Factors and Ergonomics Society.

  17. Logistics Automation Master Plan (LAMP). Better Logistics Support through Automation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1983-06-01

    productivity and efficiency of DARCOM human resources through the design, development, and deployment of workspace automation tools. 16. Develop Area Oriented...See Resource Annex Budgeted and Programed Resources by FY: See Resource Annex Actual or Planned Source of Resources: See Resourece Annex. Purpose and...screen, video disc machine and a microcomputer. Pressure from a human hand or light per on the user friendly screen tells the computer to retrieve

  18. Development of an automated processing and screening system for the space shuttle orbiter flight test data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mccutchen, D. K.; Brose, J. F.; Palm, W. E.

    1982-01-01

    One nemesis of the structural dynamist is the tedious task of reviewing large quantities of data. This data, obtained from various types of instrumentation, may be represented by oscillogram records, root-mean-squared (rms) time histories, power spectral densities, shock spectra, 1/3 octave band analyses, and various statistical distributions. In an attempt to reduce the laborious task of manually reviewing all of the space shuttle orbiter wideband frequency-modulated (FM) analog data, an automated processing system was developed to perform the screening process based upon predefined or predicted threshold criteria.

  19. Large-scale DNA Barcode Library Generation for Biomolecule Identification in High-throughput Screens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyons, Eli; Sheridan, Paul; Tremmel, Georg; Miyano, Satoru; Sugano, Sumio

    2017-10-24

    High-throughput screens allow for the identification of specific biomolecules with characteristics of interest. In barcoded screens, DNA barcodes are linked to target biomolecules in a manner allowing for the target molecules making up a library to be identified by sequencing the DNA barcodes using Next Generation Sequencing. To be useful in experimental settings, the DNA barcodes in a library must satisfy certain constraints related to GC content, homopolymer length, Hamming distance, and blacklisted subsequences. Here we report a novel framework to quickly generate large-scale libraries of DNA barcodes for use in high-throughput screens. We show that our framework dramatically reduces the computation time required to generate large-scale DNA barcode libraries, compared with a naїve approach to DNA barcode library generation. As a proof of concept, we demonstrate that our framework is able to generate a library consisting of one million DNA barcodes for use in a fragment antibody phage display screening experiment. We also report generating a general purpose one billion DNA barcode library, the largest such library yet reported in literature. Our results demonstrate the value of our novel large-scale DNA barcode library generation framework for use in high-throughput screening applications.

  20. Automated data processing of high-resolution mass spectra

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Michael Adsetts Edberg; Smedsgaard, Jørn

    of the massive amounts of data. We present an automated data processing method to quantitatively compare large numbers of spectra from the analysis of complex mixtures, exploiting the full quality of high-resolution mass spectra. By projecting all detected ions - within defined intervals on both the time...... infusion of crude extracts into the source taking advantage of the high sensitivity, high mass resolution and accuracy and the limited fragmentation. Unfortunately, there has not been a comparable development in the data processing techniques to fully exploit gain in high resolution and accuracy...... infusion analyses of crude extract to find the relationship between species from several species terverticillate Penicillium, and also that the ions responsible for the segregation can be identified. Furthermore the process can automate the process of detecting unique species and unique metabolites....

  1. Towards cooperative guidance and control of highly automated vehicles: H-Mode and Conduct-by-Wire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flemisch, Frank Ole; Bengler, Klaus; Bubb, Heiner; Winner, Hermann; Bruder, Ralph

    2014-01-01

    This article provides a general ergonomic framework of cooperative guidance and control for vehicles with an emphasis on the cooperation between a human and a highly automated vehicle. In the twenty-first century, mobility and automation technologies are increasingly fused. In the sky, highly automated aircraft are flying with a high safety record. On the ground, a variety of driver assistance systems are being developed, and highly automated vehicles with increasingly autonomous capabilities are becoming possible. Human-centred automation has paved the way for a better cooperation between automation and humans. How can these highly automated systems be structured so that they can be easily understood, how will they cooperate with the human? The presented research was conducted using the methods of iterative build-up and refinement of framework by triangulation, i.e. by instantiating and testing the framework with at least two derived concepts and prototypes. This article sketches a general, conceptual ergonomic framework of cooperative guidance and control of highly automated vehicles, two concepts derived from the framework, prototypes and pilot data. Cooperation is exemplified in a list of aspects and related to levels of the driving task. With the concept 'Conduct-by-Wire', cooperation happens mainly on the guidance level, where the driver can delegate manoeuvres to the automation with a specialised manoeuvre interface. With H-Mode, a haptic-multimodal interaction with highly automated vehicles based on the H(orse)-Metaphor, cooperation is mainly done on guidance and control with a haptically active interface. Cooperativeness should be a key aspect for future human-automation systems. Especially for highly automated vehicles, cooperative guidance and control is a research direction with already promising concepts and prototypes that should be further explored. The application of the presented approach is every human-machine system that moves and includes high

  2. Economic and workflow analysis of a blood bank automated system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, Kyung-Hwa; Kim, Hyung Hoi; Chang, Chulhun L; Lee, Eun Yup

    2013-07-01

    This study compared the estimated costs and times required for ABO/Rh(D) typing and unexpected antibody screening using an automated system and manual methods. The total cost included direct and labor costs. Labor costs were calculated on the basis of the average operator salaries and unit values (minutes), which was the hands-on time required to test one sample. To estimate unit values, workflows were recorded on video, and the time required for each process was analyzed separately. The unit values of ABO/Rh(D) typing using the manual method were 5.65 and 8.1 min during regular and unsocial working hours, respectively. The unit value was less than 3.5 min when several samples were tested simultaneously. The unit value for unexpected antibody screening was 2.6 min. The unit values using the automated method for ABO/Rh(D) typing, unexpected antibody screening, and both simultaneously were all 1.5 min. The total cost of ABO/Rh(D) typing of only one sample using the automated analyzer was lower than that of testing only one sample using the manual technique but higher than that of testing several samples simultaneously. The total cost of unexpected antibody screening using an automated analyzer was less than that using the manual method. ABO/Rh(D) typing using an automated analyzer incurs a lower unit value and cost than that using the manual technique when only one sample is tested at a time. Unexpected antibody screening using an automated analyzer always incurs a lower unit value and cost than that using the manual technique.

  3. Automation in Cytomics: A Modern RDBMS Based Platform for Image Analysis and Management in High-Throughput Screening Experiments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    E. Larios (Enrique); Y. Zhang (Ying); K. Yan (Kuan); Z. Di; S. LeDévédec (Sylvia); F.E. Groffen (Fabian); F.J. Verbeek

    2012-01-01

    textabstractIn cytomics bookkeeping of the data generated during lab experiments is crucial. The current approach in cytomics is to conduct High-Throughput Screening (HTS) experiments so that cells can be tested under many different experimental conditions. Given the large amount of different

  4. I trust it, but I don't know why: effects of implicit attitudes toward automation on trust in an automated system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merritt, Stephanie M; Heimbaugh, Heather; LaChapell, Jennifer; Lee, Deborah

    2013-06-01

    This study is the first to examine the influence of implicit attitudes toward automation on users' trust in automation. Past empirical work has examined explicit (conscious) influences on user level of trust in automation but has not yet measured implicit influences. We examine concurrent effects of explicit propensity to trust machines and implicit attitudes toward automation on trust in an automated system. We examine differential impacts of each under varying automation performance conditions (clearly good, ambiguous, clearly poor). Participants completed both a self-report measure of propensity to trust and an Implicit Association Test measuring implicit attitude toward automation, then performed an X-ray screening task. Automation performance was manipulated within-subjects by varying the number and obviousness of errors. Explicit propensity to trust and implicit attitude toward automation did not significantly correlate. When the automation's performance was ambiguous, implicit attitude significantly affected automation trust, and its relationship with propensity to trust was additive: Increments in either were related to increases in trust. When errors were obvious, a significant interaction between the implicit and explicit measures was found, with those high in both having higher trust. Implicit attitudes have important implications for automation trust. Users may not be able to accurately report why they experience a given level of trust. To understand why users trust or fail to trust automation, measurements of implicit and explicit predictors may be necessary. Furthermore, implicit attitude toward automation might be used as a lever to effectively calibrate trust.

  5. Semi-automated De-identification of German Content Sensitive Reports for Big Data Analytics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seuss, Hannes; Dankerl, Peter; Ihle, Matthias; Grandjean, Andrea; Hammon, Rebecca; Kaestle, Nicola; Fasching, Peter A; Maier, Christian; Christoph, Jan; Sedlmayr, Martin; Uder, Michael; Cavallaro, Alexander; Hammon, Matthias

    2017-07-01

    Purpose  Projects involving collaborations between different institutions require data security via selective de-identification of words or phrases. A semi-automated de-identification tool was developed and evaluated on different types of medical reports natively and after adapting the algorithm to the text structure. Materials and Methods  A semi-automated de-identification tool was developed and evaluated for its sensitivity and specificity in detecting sensitive content in written reports. Data from 4671 pathology reports (4105 + 566 in two different formats), 2804 medical reports, 1008 operation reports, and 6223 radiology reports of 1167 patients suffering from breast cancer were de-identified. The content was itemized into four categories: direct identifiers (name, address), indirect identifiers (date of birth/operation, medical ID, etc.), medical terms, and filler words. The software was tested natively (without training) in order to establish a baseline. The reports were manually edited and the model re-trained for the next test set. After manually editing 25, 50, 100, 250, 500 and if applicable 1000 reports of each type re-training was applied. Results  In the native test, 61.3 % of direct and 80.8 % of the indirect identifiers were detected. The performance (P) increased to 91.4 % (P25), 96.7 % (P50), 99.5 % (P100), 99.6 % (P250), 99.7 % (P500) and 100 % (P1000) for direct identifiers and to 93.2 % (P25), 97.9 % (P50), 97.2 % (P100), 98.9 % (P250), 99.0 % (P500) and 99.3 % (P1000) for indirect identifiers. Without training, 5.3 % of medical terms were falsely flagged as critical data. The performance increased, after training, to 4.0 % (P25), 3.6 % (P50), 4.0 % (P100), 3.7 % (P250), 4.3 % (P500), and 3.1 % (P1000). Roughly 0.1 % of filler words were falsely flagged. Conclusion  Training of the developed de-identification tool continuously improved its performance. Training with roughly 100 edited

  6. Dexterous robotic manipulation of alert adult Drosophila for high-content experimentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savall, Joan; Ho, Eric Tatt Wei; Huang, Cheng; Maxey, Jessica R; Schnitzer, Mark J

    2015-07-01

    We present a robot that enables high-content studies of alert adult Drosophila by combining operations including gentle picking; translations and rotations; characterizations of fly phenotypes and behaviors; microdissection; or release. To illustrate, we assessed fly morphology, tracked odor-evoked locomotion, sorted flies by sex, and dissected the cuticle to image neural activity. The robot's tireless capacity for precise manipulations enables a scalable platform for screening flies' complex attributes and behavioral patterns.

  7. Integration of statistical modeling and high-content microscopy to systematically investigate cell-substrate interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Wen Li Kelly; Likhitpanichkul, Morakot; Ho, Anthony; Simmons, Craig A

    2010-03-01

    Cell-substrate interactions are multifaceted, involving the integration of various physical and biochemical signals. The interactions among these microenvironmental factors cannot be facilely elucidated and quantified by conventional experimentation, and necessitate multifactorial strategies. Here we describe an approach that integrates statistical design and analysis of experiments with automated microscopy to systematically investigate the combinatorial effects of substrate-derived stimuli (substrate stiffness and matrix protein concentration) on mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) spreading, proliferation and osteogenic differentiation. C3H10T1/2 cells were grown on type I collagen- or fibronectin-coated polyacrylamide hydrogels with tunable mechanical properties. Experimental conditions, which were defined according to central composite design, consisted of specific permutations of substrate stiffness (3-144 kPa) and adhesion protein concentration (7-520 microg/mL). Spreading area, BrdU incorporation and Runx2 nuclear translocation were quantified using high-content microscopy and modeled as mathematical functions of substrate stiffness and protein concentration. The resulting response surfaces revealed distinct patterns of protein-specific, substrate stiffness-dependent modulation of MSC proliferation and differentiation, demonstrating the advantage of statistical modeling in the detection and description of higher-order cellular responses. In a broader context, this approach can be adapted to study other types of cell-material interactions and can facilitate the efficient screening and optimization of substrate properties for applications involving cell-material interfaces. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Detection and quantification of intracellular bacterial colonies by automated, high-throughput microscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ernstsen, Christina L; Login, Frédéric H; Jensen, Helene H; Nørregaard, Rikke; Møller-Jensen, Jakob; Nejsum, Lene N

    2017-08-01

    To target bacterial pathogens that invade and proliferate inside host cells, it is necessary to design intervention strategies directed against bacterial attachment, cellular invasion and intracellular proliferation. We present an automated microscopy-based, fast, high-throughput method for analyzing size and number of intracellular bacterial colonies in infected tissue culture cells. Cells are seeded in 48-well plates and infected with a GFP-expressing bacterial pathogen. Following gentamicin treatment to remove extracellular pathogens, cells are fixed and cell nuclei stained. This is followed by automated microscopy and subsequent semi-automated spot detection to determine the number of intracellular bacterial colonies, their size distribution, and the average number per host cell. Multiple 48-well plates can be processed sequentially and the procedure can be completed in one working day. As a model we quantified intracellular bacterial colonies formed by uropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC) during infection of human kidney cells (HKC-8). Urinary tract infections caused by UPEC are among the most common bacterial infectious diseases in humans. UPEC can colonize tissues of the urinary tract and is responsible for acute, chronic, and recurrent infections. In the bladder, UPEC can form intracellular quiescent reservoirs, thought to be responsible for recurrent infections. In the kidney, UPEC can colonize renal epithelial cells and pass to the blood stream, either via epithelial cell disruption or transcellular passage, to cause sepsis. Intracellular colonies are known to be clonal, originating from single invading UPEC. In our experimental setup, we found UPEC CFT073 intracellular bacterial colonies to be heterogeneous in size and present in nearly one third of the HKC-8 cells. This high-throughput experimental format substantially reduces experimental time and enables fast screening of the intracellular bacterial load and cellular distribution of multiple

  9. Diagnostic Hearing Assessment in Schools: Validity and Time Efficiency of Automated Audiometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahomed-Asmail, Faheema; Swanepoel, De Wet; Eikelboom, Robert H

    2016-01-01

    Poor follow-up compliance from school-based hearing screening typically undermines the efficacy of school-based hearing screening programs. Onsite diagnostic audiometry with automation may reduce false positives and ensure directed referrals. To investigate the validity and time efficiency of automated diagnostic air- and bone-conduction audiometry for children in a natural school environment following hearing screening. A within-subject repeated measures design was employed to compare air- and bone-conduction pure-tone thresholds (0.5-4 kHz), measured by manual and automated pure-tone audiometry. Sixty-two children, 25 males and 37 females, with an average age of 8 yr (standard deviation [SD] = 0.92; range = 6-10 yr) were recruited for this study. The participants included 30 children who failed on a hearing screening and 32 children who passed a hearing screening. Threshold comparisons were made for air- and bone-conduction thresholds across ears tested with manual and automated audiometry. To avoid a floor effect thresholds of 15 dB HL were excluded in analyses. The Wilcoxon signed ranked test was used to compare threshold correspondence for manual and automated thresholds and the paired samples t-test was used to compare test time. Statistical significance was set as p ≤ 0.05. 85.7% of air-conduction thresholds and 44.6% of bone-conduction thresholds corresponded within the normal range (15 dB HL) for manual and automated audiometry. Both manual and automated audiometry air- and bone-conduction thresholds exceeded 15 dB HL in 9.9% and 34.0% of thresholds, respectively. For these thresholds, average absolute differences for air- and bone-conduction thresholds were 6.3 (SD = 8.3) and 2.2 dB (SD = 3.6) and they corresponded within 10 dB across frequencies in 87.7% and 100.0%, respectively. There was no significant difference between manual and automated air- and bone-conduction across frequencies for these thresholds. Using onsite automated diagnostic audiometry

  10. Marketing automation supporting sales

    OpenAIRE

    Sandell, Niko

    2016-01-01

    The past couple of decades has been a time of major changes in marketing. Digitalization has become a permanent part of marketing and at the same time enabled efficient collection of data. Personalization and customization of content are playing a crucial role in marketing when new customers are acquired. This has also created a need for automation to facilitate the distribution of targeted content. As a result of successful marketing automation more information of the customers is gathered ...

  11. An Intelligent Automation Platform for Rapid Bioprocess Design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Tianyi; Zhou, Yuhong

    2014-08-01

    Bioprocess development is very labor intensive, requiring many experiments to characterize each unit operation in the process sequence to achieve product safety and process efficiency. Recent advances in microscale biochemical engineering have led to automated experimentation. A process design workflow is implemented sequentially in which (1) a liquid-handling system performs high-throughput wet lab experiments, (2) standalone analysis devices detect the data, and (3) specific software is used for data analysis and experiment design given the user's inputs. We report an intelligent automation platform that integrates these three activities to enhance the efficiency of such a workflow. A multiagent intelligent architecture has been developed incorporating agent communication to perform the tasks automatically. The key contribution of this work is the automation of data analysis and experiment design and also the ability to generate scripts to run the experiments automatically, allowing the elimination of human involvement. A first-generation prototype has been established and demonstrated through lysozyme precipitation process design. All procedures in the case study have been fully automated through an intelligent automation platform. The realization of automated data analysis and experiment design, and automated script programming for experimental procedures has the potential to increase lab productivity. © 2013 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  12. Automated toxicological screening reports of modified Agilent MSD Chemstation combined with Microsoft Visual Basic application programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choe, Sanggil; Kim, Suncheun; Choi, Hyeyoung; Choi, Hwakyoung; Chung, Heesun; Hwang, Bangyeon

    2010-06-15

    Agilent GC-MS MSD Chemstation offers automated library search report for toxicological screening using total ion chromatogram (TIC) and mass spectroscopy in normal mode. Numerous peaks appear in the chromatogram of biological specimen such as blood or urine and often large migrating peaks obscure small target peaks, in addition, any target peaks of low abundance regularly give wrong library search result or low matching score. As a result, retention time and mass spectrum of all the peaks in the chromatogram have to be checked to see if they are relevant. These repeated actions are very tedious and time-consuming to toxicologists. MSD Chemstation software operates using a number of macro files which give commands and instructions on how to work on and extract data from the chromatogram and spectroscopy. These macro files are developed by the own compiler of the software. All the original macro files can be modified and new macro files can be added to the original software by users. To get more accurate results with more convenient method and to save time for data analysis, we developed new macro files for reports generation and inserted new menus in the Enhanced Data Analysis program. Toxicological screening reports generated by these new macro files are in text mode or graphic mode and these reports can be generated with three different automated subtraction options. Text reports have Brief mode and Full mode and graphic reports have the option with or without mass spectrum mode. Matched mass spectrum and matching score for detected compounds are printed in reports by modified library searching modules. We have also developed an independent application program named DrugMan. This program manages drug groups, lists and parameters that are in use in MSD Chemstation. The incorporation of DrugMan with modified macro modules provides a powerful tool for toxicological screening and save a lot of valuable time on toxicological work. (c) 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All

  13. Decision Making In A High-Tech World: Automation Bias and Countermeasures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosier, Kathleen L.; Skitka, Linda J.; Burdick, Mark R.; Heers, Susan T.; Rosekind, Mark R. (Technical Monitor)

    1996-01-01

    Automated decision aids and decision support systems have become essential tools in many high-tech environments. In aviation, for example, flight management systems computers not only fly the aircraft, but also calculate fuel efficient paths, detect and diagnose system malfunctions and abnormalities, and recommend or carry out decisions. Air Traffic Controllers will soon be utilizing decision support tools to help them predict and detect potential conflicts and to generate clearances. Other fields as disparate as nuclear power plants and medical diagnostics are similarly becoming more and more automated. Ideally, the combination of human decision maker and automated decision aid should result in a high-performing team, maximizing the advantages of additional cognitive and observational power in the decision-making process. In reality, however, the presence of these aids often short-circuits the way that even very experienced decision makers have traditionally handled tasks and made decisions, and introduces opportunities for new decision heuristics and biases. Results of recent research investigating the use of automated aids have indicated the presence of automation bias, that is, errors made when decision makers rely on automated cues as a heuristic replacement for vigilant information seeking and processing. Automation commission errors, i.e., errors made when decision makers inappropriately follow an automated directive, or automation omission errors, i.e., errors made when humans fail to take action or notice a problem because an automated aid fails to inform them, can result from this tendency. Evidence of the tendency to make automation-related omission and commission errors has been found in pilot self reports, in studies using pilots in flight simulations, and in non-flight decision making contexts with student samples. Considerable research has found that increasing social accountability can successfully ameliorate a broad array of cognitive biases and

  14. Just-in-Time Compound Pooling Increases Primary Screening Capacity without Compromising Screening Quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elkin, L L; Harden, D G; Saldanha, S; Ferguson, H; Cheney, D L; Pieniazek, S N; Maloney, D P; Zewinski, J; O'Connell, J; Banks, M

    2015-06-01

    Compound pooling, or multiplexing more than one compound per well during primary high-throughput screening (HTS), is a controversial approach with a long history of limited success. Many issues with this approach likely arise from long-term storage of library plates containing complex mixtures of compounds at high concentrations. Due to the historical difficulties with using multiplexed library plates, primary HTS often uses a one-compound-one-well approach. However, as compound collections grow, innovative strategies are required to increase the capacity of primary screening campaigns. Toward this goal, we have developed a novel compound pooling method that increases screening capacity without compromising data quality. This method circumvents issues related to the long-term storage of complex compound mixtures by using acoustic dispensing to enable "just-in-time" compound pooling directly in the assay well immediately prior to assay. Using this method, we can pool two compounds per well, effectively doubling the capacity of a primary screen. Here, we present data from pilot studies using just-in-time pooling, as well as data from a large >2-million-compound screen using this approach. These data suggest that, for many targets, this method can be used to vastly increase screening capacity without significant reduction in the ability to detect screening hits. © 2015 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  15. Automated image quality assessment for chest CT scans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reeves, Anthony P; Xie, Yiting; Liu, Shuang

    2018-02-01

    Medical image quality needs to be maintained at standards sufficient for effective clinical reading. Automated computer analytic methods may be applied to medical images for quality assessment. For chest CT scans in a lung cancer screening context, an automated quality assessment method is presented that characterizes image noise and image intensity calibration. This is achieved by image measurements in three automatically segmented homogeneous regions of the scan: external air, trachea lumen air, and descending aorta blood. Profiles of CT scanner behavior are also computed. The method has been evaluated on both phantom and real low-dose chest CT scans and results show that repeatable noise and calibration measures may be realized by automated computer algorithms. Noise and calibration profiles show relevant differences between different scanners and protocols. Automated image quality assessment may be useful for quality control for lung cancer screening and may enable performance improvements to automated computer analysis methods. © 2017 American Association of Physicists in Medicine.

  16. Development of a web-based tool for automated processing and cataloging of a unique combinatorial drug screen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalecki, Alex G; Wolschendorf, Frank

    2016-07-01

    Facing totally resistant bacteria, traditional drug discovery efforts have proven to be of limited use in replenishing our depleted arsenal of therapeutic antibiotics. Recently, the natural anti-bacterial properties of metal ions in synergy with metal-coordinating ligands have shown potential for generating new molecule candidates with potential therapeutic downstream applications. We recently developed a novel combinatorial screening approach to identify compounds with copper-dependent anti-bacterial properties. Through a parallel screening technique, the assay distinguishes between copper-dependent and independent activities against Mycobacterium tuberculosis with hits being defined as compounds with copper-dependent activities. These activities must then be linked to a compound master list to process and analyze the data and to identify the hit molecules, a labor intensive and mistake-prone analysis. Here, we describe a software program built to automate this analysis in order to streamline our workflow significantly. We conducted a small, 1440 compound screen against M. tuberculosis and used it as an example framework to build and optimize the software. Though specifically adapted to our own needs, it can be readily expanded for any small- to medium-throughput screening effort, parallel or conventional. Further, by virtue of the underlying Linux server, it can be easily adapted for chemoinformatic analysis of screens through packages such as OpenBabel. Overall, this setup represents an easy-to-use solution for streamlining processing and analysis of biological screening data, as well as offering a scaffold for ready functionality expansion. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Optical tools for high-throughput screening of abrasion resistance of combinatorial libraries of organic coatings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potyrailo, Radislav A.; Chisholm, Bret J.; Olson, Daniel R.; Brennan, Michael J.; Molaison, Chris A.

    2002-02-01

    Design, validation, and implementation of an optical spectroscopic system for high-throughput analysis of combinatorially developed protective organic coatings are reported. Our approach replaces labor-intensive coating evaluation steps with an automated system that rapidly analyzes 8x6 arrays of coating elements that are deposited on a plastic substrate. Each coating element of the library is 10 mm in diameter and 2 to 5 micrometers thick. Performance of coatings is evaluated with respect to their resistance to wear abrasion because this parameter is one of the primary considerations in end-use applications. Upon testing, the organic coatings undergo changes that are impossible to quantitatively predict using existing knowledge. Coatings are abraded using industry-accepted abrasion test methods at single-or multiple-abrasion conditions, followed by high- throughput analysis of abrasion-induced light scatter. The developed automated system is optimized for the analysis of diffusively scattered light that corresponds to 0 to 30% haze. System precision of 0.1 to 2.5% relative standard deviation provides capability for the reliable ranking of coatings performance. While the system was implemented for high-throughput screening of combinatorially developed organic protective coatings for automotive applications, it can be applied to a variety of other applications where materials ranking can be achieved using optical spectroscopic tools.

  18. The Evolution of MALDI-TOF Mass Spectrometry toward Ultra-High-Throughput Screening: 1536-Well Format and Beyond.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haslam, Carl; Hellicar, John; Dunn, Adrian; Fuetterer, Arne; Hardy, Neil; Marshall, Peter; Paape, Rainer; Pemberton, Michelle; Resemannand, Anja; Leveridge, Melanie

    2016-02-01

    Mass spectrometry (MS) offers a label-free, direct-detection method, in contrast to fluorescent or colorimetric methodologies. Over recent years, solid-phase extraction-based techniques, such as the Agilent RapidFire system, have emerged that are capable of analyzing samples in high-throughput screening (HTS). Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF) offers an alternative for high-throughput MS detection. However, sample preparation and deposition onto the MALDI target, as well as interference from matrix ions, have been considered limitations for the use of MALDI for screening assays. Here we describe the development and validation of assays for both small-molecule and peptide analytes using MALDI-TOF coupled with nanoliter liquid handling. Using the JMJD2c histone demethylase and acetylcholinesterase as model systems, we have generated robust data in a 1536 format and also increased sample deposition to 6144 samples per target. Using these methods, we demonstrate that this technology can deliver fast sample analysis time with low sample volume, and data comparable to that of current RapidFire assays. © 2015 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  19. Automated, quantitative cognitive/behavioral screening of mice: for genetics, pharmacology, animal cognition and undergraduate instruction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallistel, C R; Balci, Fuat; Freestone, David; Kheifets, Aaron; King, Adam

    2014-02-26

    We describe a high-throughput, high-volume, fully automated, live-in 24/7 behavioral testing system for assessing the effects of genetic and pharmacological manipulations on basic mechanisms of cognition and learning in mice. A standard polypropylene mouse housing tub is connected through an acrylic tube to a standard commercial mouse test box. The test box has 3 hoppers, 2 of which are connected to pellet feeders. All are internally illuminable with an LED and monitored for head entries by infrared (IR) beams. Mice live in the environment, which eliminates handling during screening. They obtain their food during two or more daily feeding periods by performing in operant (instrumental) and Pavlovian (classical) protocols, for which we have written protocol-control software and quasi-real-time data analysis and graphing software. The data analysis and graphing routines are written in a MATLAB-based language created to simplify greatly the analysis of large time-stamped behavioral and physiological event records and to preserve a full data trail from raw data through all intermediate analyses to the published graphs and statistics within a single data structure. The data-analysis code harvests the data several times a day and subjects it to statistical and graphical analyses, which are automatically stored in the "cloud" and on in-lab computers. Thus, the progress of individual mice is visualized and quantified daily. The data-analysis code talks to the protocol-control code, permitting the automated advance from protocol to protocol of individual subjects. The behavioral protocols implemented are matching, autoshaping, timed hopper-switching, risk assessment in timed hopper-switching, impulsivity measurement, and the circadian anticipation of food availability. Open-source protocol-control and data-analysis code makes the addition of new protocols simple. Eight test environments fit in a 48 in x 24 in x 78 in cabinet; two such cabinets (16 environments) may be

  20. Comparing Visually Assessed BI-RADS Breast Density and Automated Volumetric Breast Density Software: A Cross-Sectional Study in a Breast Cancer Screening Setting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Waal, Daniëlle; den Heeten, Gerard J; Pijnappel, Ruud M; Schuur, Klaas H; Timmers, Johanna M H; Verbeek, André L M; Broeders, Mireille J M

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study is to compare different methods for measuring breast density, both visual assessments and automated volumetric density, in a breast cancer screening setting. These measures could potentially be implemented in future screening programmes, in the context of personalised screening or screening evaluation. Digital mammographic exams (N = 992) of women participating in the Dutch breast cancer screening programme (age 50-75y) in 2013 were included. Breast density was measured in three different ways: BI-RADS density (5th edition) and with two commercially available automated software programs (Quantra and Volpara volumetric density). BI-RADS density (ordinal scale) was assessed by three radiologists. Quantra (v1.3) and Volpara (v1.5.0) provide continuous estimates. Different comparison methods were used, including Bland-Altman plots and correlation coefficients (e.g., intraclass correlation coefficient [ICC]). Based on the BI-RADS classification, 40.8% of the women had 'heterogeneously or extremely dense' breasts. The median volumetric percent density was 12.1% (IQR: 9.6-16.5) for Quantra, which was higher than the Volpara estimate (median 6.6%, IQR: 4.4-10.9). The mean difference between Quantra and Volpara was 5.19% (95% CI: 5.04-5.34) (ICC: 0.64). There was a clear increase in volumetric percent dense volume as BI-RADS density increased. The highest accuracy for predicting the presence of BI-RADS c+d (heterogeneously or extremely dense) was observed with a cut-off value of 8.0% for Volpara and 13.8% for Quantra. Although there was no perfect agreement, there appeared to be a strong association between all three measures. Both volumetric density measures seem to be usable in breast cancer screening programmes, provided that the required data flow can be realized.

  1. Phaedra, a protocol-driven system for analysis and validation of high-content imaging and flow cytometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cornelissen, Frans; Cik, Miroslav; Gustin, Emmanuel

    2012-04-01

    High-content screening has brought new dimensions to cellular assays by generating rich data sets that characterize cell populations in great detail and detect subtle phenotypes. To derive relevant, reliable conclusions from these complex data, it is crucial to have informatics tools supporting quality control, data reduction, and data mining. These tools must reconcile the complexity of advanced analysis methods with the user-friendliness demanded by the user community. After review of existing applications, we realized the possibility of adding innovative new analysis options. Phaedra was developed to support workflows for drug screening and target discovery, interact with several laboratory information management systems, and process data generated by a range of techniques including high-content imaging, multicolor flow cytometry, and traditional high-throughput screening assays. The application is modular and flexible, with an interface that can be tuned to specific user roles. It offers user-friendly data visualization and reduction tools for HCS but also integrates Matlab for custom image analysis and the Konstanz Information Miner (KNIME) framework for data mining. Phaedra features efficient JPEG2000 compression and full drill-down functionality from dose-response curves down to individual cells, with exclusion and annotation options, cell classification, statistical quality controls, and reporting.

  2. Anti-nuclear antibody screening using HEp-2 cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchner, Carol; Bryant, Cassandra; Eslami, Anna; Lakos, Gabriella

    2014-06-23

    The American College of Rheumatology position statement on ANA testing stipulates the use of IIF as the gold standard method for ANA screening(1). Although IIF is an excellent screening test in expert hands, the technical difficulties of processing and reading IIF slides--such as the labor intensive slide processing, manual reading, the need for experienced, trained technologists and the use of dark room--make the IIF method difficult to fit in the workflow of modern, automated laboratories. The first and crucial step towards high quality ANA screening is careful slide processing. This procedure is labor intensive, and requires full understanding of the process, as well as attention to details and experience. Slide reading is performed by fluorescent microscopy in dark rooms, and is done by trained technologists who are familiar with the various patterns, in the context of cell cycle and the morphology of interphase and dividing cells. Provided that IIF is the first line screening tool for SARD, understanding the steps to correctly perform this technique is critical. Recently, digital imaging systems have been developed for the automated reading of IIF slides. These systems, such as the NOVA View Automated Fluorescent Microscope, are designed to streamline the routine IIF workflow. NOVA View acquires and stores high resolution digital images of the wells, thereby separating image acquisition from interpretation; images are viewed an interpreted on high resolution computer monitors. It stores images for future reference and supports the operator's interpretation by providing fluorescent light intensity data on the images. It also preliminarily categorizes results as positive or negative, and provides pattern recognition for positive samples. In summary, it eliminates the need for darkroom, and automates and streamlines the IIF reading/interpretation workflow. Most importantly, it increases consistency between readers and readings. Moreover, with the use of barcoded

  3. The Upgrade Programme for the Structural Biology beamlines at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility - High throughput sample evaluation and automation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theveneau, P.; Baker, R.; Barrett, R.; Beteva, A.; Bowler, M. W.; Carpentier, P.; Caserotto, H.; de Sanctis, D.; Dobias, F.; Flot, D.; Guijarro, M.; Giraud, T.; Lentini, M.; Leonard, G. A.; Mattenet, M.; McCarthy, A. A.; McSweeney, S. M.; Morawe, C.; Nanao, M.; Nurizzo, D.; Ohlsson, S.; Pernot, P.; Popov, A. N.; Round, A.; Royant, A.; Schmid, W.; Snigirev, A.; Surr, J.; Mueller-Dieckmann, C.

    2013-03-01

    Automation and advances in technology are the key elements in addressing the steadily increasing complexity of Macromolecular Crystallography (MX) experiments. Much of this complexity is due to the inter-and intra-crystal heterogeneity in diffraction quality often observed for crystals of multi-component macromolecular assemblies or membrane proteins. Such heterogeneity makes high-throughput sample evaluation an important and necessary tool for increasing the chances of a successful structure determination. The introduction at the ESRF of automatic sample changers in 2005 dramatically increased the number of samples that were tested for diffraction quality. This "first generation" of automation, coupled with advances in software aimed at optimising data collection strategies in MX, resulted in a three-fold increase in the number of crystal structures elucidated per year using data collected at the ESRF. In addition, sample evaluation can be further complemented using small angle scattering experiments on the newly constructed bioSAXS facility on BM29 and the micro-spectroscopy facility (ID29S). The construction of a second generation of automated facilities on the MASSIF (Massively Automated Sample Screening Integrated Facility) beam lines will build on these advances and should provide a paradigm shift in how MX experiments are carried out which will benefit the entire Structural Biology community.

  4. Comparison of the clinical performances of the AdvanSure HPV Screening Real-Time PCR, the Abbott Real-Time High-Risk HPV Test, and the Hybrid Capture High-Risk HPV DNA Test for Cervical Cancer Screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung, Hae-Sun; Hahm, Chorong; Lee, Miae

    2014-09-01

    The clinical performance of three human papillomavirus (HPV) DNA commercial assays for cervical cancer screening was evaluated; the AdvanSure HPV Screening Real-Time PCR (AdvanSure PCR; LG Life Sciences) that was developed recently for the detection of both high-risk and low-risk genotypes, the Abbott RealTime High-Risk HPV Test (Abbott PCR; Abbott Molecular) and the Hybrid Capture High-Risk HPV DNA test (HC2; Qiagen). The three different HPV DNA tests were compared using cytology samples obtained from 619 women who underwent routine cervical cancer screening. The gold-standard assay was histopathological confirmation of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia of grade 2 or worse. The clinical sensitivities of the AdvanSure PCR, the Abbott PCR and the HC2 for the detection of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia of grade 2 or worse were 95.5%, 95.5% and 100%, respectively, while the clinical specificities were 61.6%, 86.4% and 83.3%, respectively. There were no significant differences in the clinical sensitivities of the Abbott PCR and the AdvanSure PCR compared to the HC2. The clinical specificities of the Abbott PCR and the AdvanSure PCR for the detection of HPV types 16/18 were 97.8% and 98.5%, respectively. For cervical cancer screening, all three tests showed relatively good clinical sensitivities, but the AdvanSure PCR had lower clinical specificity than the Abbott PCR and the HC2. The AdvanSure PCR and the Abbott PCR assays have the advantage of being automated and the ability to distinguish between HPV types 16/18 and other HPV types. The two real-time PCR assays could be useful tools in HPV testing for cervical cancer screening. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Colorectal cancer screening

    OpenAIRE

    Plumb, A. A.; Halligan, S.

    2015-01-01

    Colorectal cancer is a major public health burden worldwide. There is clear-cut evidence that screening will reduce colorectal cancer mortality and the only contentious issue is which screening tool to use. Most evidence points towards screening with fecal occult blood testing. The immunochemical fecal occult blood tests have a higher sensitivity than the guaiac-based tests. In addition, their automation and haemoglobin quantification allows a threshold for colonoscopy to be selected that can...

  6. Development of a High-Throughput Gene Expression Screen for Modulators of RAS-MAPK Signaling in a Mutant RAS Cellular Context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Severyn, Bryan; Nguyen, Thi; Altman, Michael D; Li, Lixia; Nagashima, Kumiko; Naumov, George N; Sathyanarayanan, Sriram; Cook, Erica; Morris, Erick; Ferrer, Marc; Arthur, Bill; Benita, Yair; Watters, Jim; Loboda, Andrey; Hermes, Jeff; Gilliland, D Gary; Cleary, Michelle A; Carroll, Pamela M; Strack, Peter; Tudor, Matt; Andersen, Jannik N

    2016-10-01

    The RAS-MAPK pathway controls many cellular programs, including cell proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis. In colorectal cancers, recurrent mutations in this pathway often lead to increased cell signaling that may contribute to the development of neoplasms, thereby making this pathway attractive for therapeutic intervention. To this end, we developed a 26-member gene signature of RAS-MAPK pathway activity utilizing the Affymetrix QuantiGene Plex 2.0 reagent system and performed both primary and confirmatory gene expression-based high-throughput screens (GE-HTSs) using KRAS mutant colon cancer cells (SW837) and leveraging a highly annotated chemical library. The screen achieved a hit rate of 1.4% and was able to enrich for hit compounds that target RAS-MAPK pathway members such as MEK and EGFR. Sensitivity and selectivity performance measurements were 0.84 and 1.00, respectively, indicating high true-positive and true-negative rates. Active compounds from the primary screen were confirmed in a dose-response GE-HTS assay, a GE-HTS assay using 14 additional cancer cell lines, and an in vitro colony formation assay. Altogether, our data suggest that this GE-HTS assay will be useful for larger unbiased chemical screens to identify novel compounds and mechanisms that may modulate the RAS-MAPK pathway. © 2016 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  7. Implementation and development of an automated, ultra-high-capacity, acoustic, flexible dispensing platform for assay-ready plate delivery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffith, Dylan; Northwood, Roger; Owen, Paul; Simkiss, Ellen; Brierley, Andrew; Cross, Kevin; Slaney, Andrew; Davis, Miranda; Bath, Colin

    2012-10-01

    Compound management faces the daily challenge of providing high-quality samples to drug discovery. The advent of new screening technologies has seen demand for liquid samples move toward nanoliter ranges, dispensed by contactless acoustic droplet ejection. Within AstraZeneca, a totally integrated assay-ready plate production platform has been created to fully exploit the advantages of this technology. This enables compound management to efficiently deliver large throughputs demanded by high-throughput screening while maintaining regular delivery of smaller numbers of compounds in varying plate formats for cellular or biochemical concentration-response curves in support of hit and lead optimization (structure-activity relationship screening). The automation solution, CODA, has the capability to deliver compounds on demand for single- and multiple-concentration ranges, in batch sizes ranging from 1 sample to 2 million samples, integrating seamlessly into local compound and test management systems. The software handles compound orders intelligently, grouping test requests together dependent on output plate type and serial dilution ranges so that source compound vessels are shared among numerous tests, ensuring conservation of sample, reduced labware and costs, and efficiency of work cell logistics. We describe the development of CODA to address the customer demand, challenges experienced, learning made, and subsequent enhancements.

  8. A geometrical approach for semi-automated crystal centering and in situ X-ray diffraction data collection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mohammad Yaser Heidari Khajepour; Ferrer, Jean-Luc; Lebrette, Hugo; Vernede, Xavier; Rogues, Pierrick

    2013-01-01

    High-throughput protein crystallography projects pushed forward the development of automated crystallization platforms that are now commonly used. This created an urgent need for adapted and automated equipment for crystal analysis. However, first these crystals have to be harvested, cryo-protected and flash-cooled, operations that can fail or negatively impact on the crystal. In situ X-ray diffraction analysis has become a valid alternative to these operations, and a growing number of users apply it for crystal screening and to solve structures. Nevertheless, even this shortcut may require a significant amount of beam time. In this in situ high-throughput approach, the centering of crystals relative to the beam represents the bottleneck in the analysis process. In this article, a new method to accelerate this process, by recording accurately the local geometry coordinates for each crystal in the crystallization plate, is presented. Subsequently, the crystallization plate can be presented to the X-ray beam by an automated plate-handling device, such as a six-axis robot arm, for an automated crystal centering in the beam, in situ screening or data collection. Here the preliminary results of such a semi-automated pipeline are reported for two distinct test proteins. (authors)

  9. Using iterative cluster merging with improved gap statistics to perform online phenotype discovery in the context of high-throughput RNAi screens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sun Youxian

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The recent emergence of high-throughput automated image acquisition technologies has forever changed how cell biologists collect and analyze data. Historically, the interpretation of cellular phenotypes in different experimental conditions has been dependent upon the expert opinions of well-trained biologists. Such qualitative analysis is particularly effective in detecting subtle, but important, deviations in phenotypes. However, while the rapid and continuing development of automated microscope-based technologies now facilitates the acquisition of trillions of cells in thousands of diverse experimental conditions, such as in the context of RNA interference (RNAi or small-molecule screens, the massive size of these datasets precludes human analysis. Thus, the development of automated methods which aim to identify novel and biological relevant phenotypes online is one of the major challenges in high-throughput image-based screening. Ideally, phenotype discovery methods should be designed to utilize prior/existing information and tackle three challenging tasks, i.e. restoring pre-defined biological meaningful phenotypes, differentiating novel phenotypes from known ones and clarifying novel phenotypes from each other. Arbitrarily extracted information causes biased analysis, while combining the complete existing datasets with each new image is intractable in high-throughput screens. Results Here we present the design and implementation of a novel and robust online phenotype discovery method with broad applicability that can be used in diverse experimental contexts, especially high-throughput RNAi screens. This method features phenotype modelling and iterative cluster merging using improved gap statistics. A Gaussian Mixture Model (GMM is employed to estimate the distribution of each existing phenotype, and then used as reference distribution in gap statistics. This method is broadly applicable to a number of different types of

  10. Automated Assessment of Patients' Self-Narratives for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Screening Using Natural Language Processing and Text Mining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Qiwei; Veldkamp, Bernard P; Glas, Cees A W; de Vries, Theo

    2017-03-01

    Patients' narratives about traumatic experiences and symptoms are useful in clinical screening and diagnostic procedures. In this study, we presented an automated assessment system to screen patients for posttraumatic stress disorder via a natural language processing and text-mining approach. Four machine-learning algorithms-including decision tree, naive Bayes, support vector machine, and an alternative classification approach called the product score model-were used in combination with n-gram representation models to identify patterns between verbal features in self-narratives and psychiatric diagnoses. With our sample, the product score model with unigrams attained the highest prediction accuracy when compared with practitioners' diagnoses. The addition of multigrams contributed most to balancing the metrics of sensitivity and specificity. This article also demonstrates that text mining is a promising approach for analyzing patients' self-expression behavior, thus helping clinicians identify potential patients from an early stage.

  11. Automation of the ELISpot assay for high-throughput detection of antigen-specific T-cell responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Coral-Ann M; Roberts, Steven G; Laird, Rebecca; McKinnon, Elizabeth; Ahmed, Imran; Pfafferott, Katja; Turley, Joanne; Keane, Niamh M; Lucas, Andrew; Rushton, Ben; Chopra, Abha; Mallal, Simon; John, Mina

    2009-05-15

    The enzyme linked immunospot (ELISpot) assay is a fundamental tool in cellular immunology, providing both quantitative and qualitative information on cellular cytokine responses to defined antigens. It enables the comprehensive screening of patient derived peripheral blood mononuclear cells to reveal the antigenic restriction of T-cell responses and is an emerging technique in clinical laboratory investigation of certain infectious diseases. As with all cellular-based assays, the final results of the assay are dependent on a number of technical variables that may impact precision if not highly standardised between operators. When studies that are large scale or using multiple antigens are set up manually, these assays may be labour intensive, have many manual handling steps, are subject to data and sample integrity failure and may show large inter-operator variability. Here we describe the successful automated performance of the interferon (IFN)-gamma ELISpot assay from cell counting through to electronic capture of cytokine quantitation and present the results of a comparison between automated and manual performance of the ELISpot assay. The mean number of spot forming units enumerated by both methods for limiting dilutions of CMV, EBV and influenza (CEF)-derived peptides in six healthy individuals were highly correlated (r>0.83, pautomated system compared favourably with the manual ELISpot and further ensured electronic tracking, increased through-put and reduced turnaround time.

  12. High-density self-contained microfluidic KOALA kits for use by everyone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guckenberger, David J; Berthier, Erwin; Beebe, David J

    2015-04-01

    Cell-based assays are essential tools used by research labs in a wide range of fields, including cell biology, toxicology, and natural product discovery labs. However, in some situations, the need for cell-based assays does not justify the costs of maintaining cell culture facilities and retaining skilled staff. The kit-on-a-lid assay (KOALA) technology enables accessible low-cost and prepackageable microfluidic platforms that can be operated with minimal infrastructure or training. Here, we demonstrate and characterize high-density KOALA methods for high-throughput applications, achieving an assay density comparable to that of a 384-well plate and usability by hand with no liquid-handling equipment. We show the potential for high-content screening and complex assays such as quantitative immunochemistry assays requiring multiple steps and reagents. © 2014 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  13. Feasibility of Using Low-Cost Motion Capture for Automated Screening of Shoulder Motion Limitation after Breast Cancer Surgery.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valeriya Gritsenko

    Full Text Available To determine if a low-cost, automated motion analysis system using Microsoft Kinect could accurately measure shoulder motion and detect motion impairments in women following breast cancer surgery.Descriptive study of motion measured via 2 methods.Academic cancer center oncology clinic.20 women (mean age = 60 yrs were assessed for active and passive shoulder motions during a routine post-operative clinic visit (mean = 18 days after surgery following mastectomy (n = 4 or lumpectomy (n = 16 for breast cancer.Participants performed 3 repetitions of active and passive shoulder motions on the side of the breast surgery. Arm motion was recorded using motion capture by Kinect for Windows sensor and on video. Goniometric values were determined from video recordings, while motion capture data were transformed to joint angles using 2 methods (body angle and projection angle.Correlation of motion capture with goniometry and detection of motion limitation.Active shoulder motion measured with low-cost motion capture agreed well with goniometry (r = 0.70-0.80, while passive shoulder motion measurements did not correlate well. Using motion capture, it was possible to reliably identify participants whose range of shoulder motion was reduced by 40% or more.Low-cost, automated motion analysis may be acceptable to screen for moderate to severe motion impairments in active shoulder motion. Automatic detection of motion limitation may allow quick screening to be performed in an oncologist's office and trigger timely referrals for rehabilitation.

  14. Feasibility of Using Low-Cost Motion Capture for Automated Screening of Shoulder Motion Limitation after Breast Cancer Surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gritsenko, Valeriya; Dailey, Eric; Kyle, Nicholas; Taylor, Matt; Whittacre, Sean; Swisher, Anne K

    2015-01-01

    To determine if a low-cost, automated motion analysis system using Microsoft Kinect could accurately measure shoulder motion and detect motion impairments in women following breast cancer surgery. Descriptive study of motion measured via 2 methods. Academic cancer center oncology clinic. 20 women (mean age = 60 yrs) were assessed for active and passive shoulder motions during a routine post-operative clinic visit (mean = 18 days after surgery) following mastectomy (n = 4) or lumpectomy (n = 16) for breast cancer. Participants performed 3 repetitions of active and passive shoulder motions on the side of the breast surgery. Arm motion was recorded using motion capture by Kinect for Windows sensor and on video. Goniometric values were determined from video recordings, while motion capture data were transformed to joint angles using 2 methods (body angle and projection angle). Correlation of motion capture with goniometry and detection of motion limitation. Active shoulder motion measured with low-cost motion capture agreed well with goniometry (r = 0.70-0.80), while passive shoulder motion measurements did not correlate well. Using motion capture, it was possible to reliably identify participants whose range of shoulder motion was reduced by 40% or more. Low-cost, automated motion analysis may be acceptable to screen for moderate to severe motion impairments in active shoulder motion. Automatic detection of motion limitation may allow quick screening to be performed in an oncologist's office and trigger timely referrals for rehabilitation.

  15. High-quality and small-capacity e-learning video featuring lecturer-superimposing PC screen images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nomura, Yoshihiko; Murakami, Michinobu; Sakamoto, Ryota; Sugiura, Tokuhiro; Matsui, Hirokazu; Kato, Norihiko

    2006-10-01

    Information processing and communication technology are progressing quickly, and are prevailing throughout various technological fields. Therefore, the development of such technology should respond to the needs for improvement of quality in the e-learning education system. The authors propose a new video-image compression processing system that ingeniously employs the features of the lecturing scene. While dynamic lecturing scene is shot by a digital video camera, screen images are electronically stored by a PC screen image capturing software in relatively long period at a practical class. Then, a lecturer and a lecture stick are extracted from the digital video images by pattern recognition techniques, and the extracted images are superimposed on the appropriate PC screen images by off-line processing. Thus, we have succeeded to create a high-quality and small-capacity (HQ/SC) video-on-demand educational content featuring the advantages: the high quality of image sharpness, the small electronic file capacity, and the realistic lecturer motion.

  16. Performance Characteristics of the Reverse Syphilis Screening Algorithm in a Population With a Moderately High Prevalence of Syphilis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rourk, Angela R; Nolte, Frederick S; Litwin, Christine M

    2016-11-01

    With the recent introduction of automated treponemal tests, a new reverse syphilis algorithm has been proposed and now used by many clinical laboratories. We analyzed the impact of instituting the reverse screening syphilis algorithm in a laboratory that serves a geographic area with a moderately high prevalence of syphilis infection. Serum samples sent for syphilis testing were tested using a treponemal enzyme immunoassay (EIA) as the screening assay. EIA reactive samples were tested by rapid plasma reagin (RPR) and titered to end point if reactive. RPR nonreactive samples were analyzed by the Treponema pallidum particle agglutination test (TP-PA). Pertinent medical records were reviewed for false-reactive screens and samples with evidence of past syphilis infection. Among 10,060 patients tested, 502 (5%) were reactive on the initial EIA screen. The RPR was reactive in 150 (1.5%). TP-PA testing determined that 103 (1.0%) were falsely reactive on initial EIA screen. The reverse screening algorithm, however, identified 242 (2.4%) with evidence of latent, secondary, or past syphilis, 21 of whom had no or unknown prior treatment with antibiotics. Despite a 1.0% false-reactive rate, the reverse syphilis algorithm detected 21 patients with possible latent syphilis that may have gone undetected by traditional syphilis screening. © American Society for Clinical Pathology, 2016. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com

  17. WebPrInSeS: automated full-length clone sequence identification and verification using high-throughput sequencing data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massouras, Andreas; Decouttere, Frederik; Hens, Korneel; Deplancke, Bart

    2010-07-01

    High-throughput sequencing (HTS) is revolutionizing our ability to obtain cheap, fast and reliable sequence information. Many experimental approaches are expected to benefit from the incorporation of such sequencing features in their pipeline. Consequently, software tools that facilitate such an incorporation should be of great interest. In this context, we developed WebPrInSeS, a web server tool allowing automated full-length clone sequence identification and verification using HTS data. WebPrInSeS encompasses two separate software applications. The first is WebPrInSeS-C which performs automated sequence verification of user-defined open-reading frame (ORF) clone libraries. The second is WebPrInSeS-E, which identifies positive hits in cDNA or ORF-based library screening experiments such as yeast one- or two-hybrid assays. Both tools perform de novo assembly using HTS data from any of the three major sequencing platforms. Thus, WebPrInSeS provides a highly integrated, cost-effective and efficient way to sequence-verify or identify clones of interest. WebPrInSeS is available at http://webprinses.epfl.ch/ and is open to all users.

  18. HC StratoMineR: A web-based tool for the rapid analysis of high content datasets

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Omta, W.; Heesbeen, R. van; Pagliero, R.; Velden, L. van der; Lelieveld, D.; Nellen, M.; Kramer, M.; Yeong, M.; Saeidi, A.; Medema, R.; Spruit, M.; Brinkkemper, S.; Klumperman, J.; Egan, D.

    2016-01-01

    High-content screening (HCS) can generate large multidimensional datasets and when aligned with the appropriate data mining tools, it can yield valuable insights into the mechanism of action of bioactive molecules. However, easy-to-use data mining tools are not widely available, with the result that

  19. HC StratoMineR : A Web-Based Tool for the Rapid Analysis of High-Content Datasets

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Omta, Wienand A; van Heesbeen, Roy G; Pagliero, Romina J; van der Velden, Lieke M; Lelieveld, Daphne; Nellen, Mehdi; Kramer, Maik; Yeong, Marley; Saeidi, Amir M; Medema, Rene H; Spruit, Marco; Brinkkemper, Sjaak; Klumperman, Judith; Egan, David A

    2016-01-01

    High-content screening (HCS) can generate large multidimensional datasets and when aligned with the appropriate data mining tools, it can yield valuable insights into the mechanism of action of bioactive molecules. However, easy-to-use data mining tools are not widely available, with the result that

  20. ICSH recommendations for assessing automated high-performance liquid chromatography and capillary electrophoresis equipment for the quantitation of HbA2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephens, A D; Colah, R; Fucharoen, S; Hoyer, J; Keren, D; McFarlane, A; Perrett, D; Wild, B J

    2015-10-01

    Automated high performance liquid chromatography and Capillary electrophoresis are used to quantitate the proportion of Hemoglobin A2 (HbA2 ) in blood samples order to enable screening and diagnosis of carriers of β-thalassemia. Since there is only a very small difference in HbA2 levels between people who are carriers and people who are not carriers such analyses need to be both precise and accurate. This paper examines the different parameters of such equipment and discusses how they should be assessed. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. The Upgrade Programme for the Structural Biology beamlines at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility – High throughput sample evaluation and automation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Theveneau, P; Baker, R; Barrett, R; Beteva, A; Bowler, M W; Carpentier, P; Caserotto, H; Sanctis, D de; Dobias, F; Flot, D; Guijarro, M; Giraud, T; Lentini, M; Leonard, G A; Mattenet, M; McSweeney, S M; Morawe, C; Nurizzo, D; McCarthy, A A; Nanao, M

    2013-01-01

    Automation and advances in technology are the key elements in addressing the steadily increasing complexity of Macromolecular Crystallography (MX) experiments. Much of this complexity is due to the inter-and intra-crystal heterogeneity in diffraction quality often observed for crystals of multi-component macromolecular assemblies or membrane proteins. Such heterogeneity makes high-throughput sample evaluation an important and necessary tool for increasing the chances of a successful structure determination. The introduction at the ESRF of automatic sample changers in 2005 dramatically increased the number of samples that were tested for diffraction quality. This 'first generation' of automation, coupled with advances in software aimed at optimising data collection strategies in MX, resulted in a three-fold increase in the number of crystal structures elucidated per year using data collected at the ESRF. In addition, sample evaluation can be further complemented using small angle scattering experiments on the newly constructed bioSAXS facility on BM29 and the micro-spectroscopy facility (ID29S). The construction of a second generation of automated facilities on the MASSIF (Massively Automated Sample Screening Integrated Facility) beam lines will build on these advances and should provide a paradigm shift in how MX experiments are carried out which will benefit the entire Structural Biology community.

  2. Combinatorial electrochemical cell array for high throughput screening of micro-fuel-cells and metal/air batteries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Rongzhong

    2007-07-01

    An electrochemical cell array was designed that contains a common air electrode and 16 microanodes for high throughput screening of both fuel cells (based on polymer electrolyte membrane) and metal/air batteries (based on liquid electrolyte). Electrode materials can easily be coated on the anodes of the electrochemical cell array and screened by switching a graphite probe from one cell to the others. The electrochemical cell array was used to study direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs), including high throughput screening of electrode catalysts and determination of optimum operating conditions. For screening of DMFCs, there is about 6% relative standard deviation (percentage of standard deviation versus mean value) for discharge current from 10 to 20 mAcm(2). The electrochemical cell array was also used to study tin/air batteries. The effect of Cu content in the anode electrode on the discharge performance of the tin/air battery was investigated. The relative standard deviations for screening of metal/air battery (based on zinc/air) are 2.4%, 3.6%, and 5.1% for discharge current at 50, 100, and 150 mAcm(2), respectively.

  3. Integrated safeguards and security for a highly automated process

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zack, N.R.; Hunteman, W.J.; Jaeger, C.D.

    1993-01-01

    Before the cancellation of the New Production Reactor Programs for the production of tritium, the reactors and associated processing were being designed to contain some of the most highly automated and remote systems conceived for a Department of Energy facility. Integrating safety, security, materials control and accountability (MC and A), and process systems at the proposed facilities would enhance the overall information and protection-in-depth available. Remote, automated fuel handling and assembly/disassembly techniques would deny access to the nuclear materials while upholding ALARA principles but would also require the full integration of all data/information systems. Such systems would greatly enhance MC and A as well as facilitate materials tracking. Physical protection systems would be connected with materials control features to cross check activities and help detect and resolve anomalies. This paper will discuss the results of a study of the safeguards and security benefits achieved from a highly automated and integrated remote nuclear facility and the impacts that such systems have on safeguards and computer and information security

  4. An economic evaluation of colorectal cancer screening in primary care practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meenan, Richard T; Anderson, Melissa L; Chubak, Jessica; Vernon, Sally W; Fuller, Sharon; Wang, Ching-Yun; Green, Beverly B

    2015-06-01

    Recent colorectal cancer screening studies focus on optimizing adherence. This study evaluated the cost effectiveness of interventions using electronic health records (EHRs); automated mailings; and stepped support increases to improve 2-year colorectal cancer screening adherence. Analyses were based on a parallel-design, randomized trial in which three stepped interventions (EHR-linked mailings ["automated"]; automated plus telephone assistance ["assisted"]; or automated and assisted plus nurse navigation to testing completion or refusal [navigated"]) were compared to usual care. Data were from August 2008 to November 2011, with analyses performed during 2012-2013. Implementation resources were micro-costed; research and registry development costs were excluded. Incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs) were based on number of participants current for screening per guidelines over 2 years. Bootstrapping examined robustness of results. Intervention delivery cost per participant current for screening ranged from $21 (automated) to $27 (navigated). Inclusion of induced testing costs (e.g., screening colonoscopy) lowered expenditures for automated (ICER=-$159) and assisted (ICER=-$36) relative to usual care over 2 years. Savings arose from increased fecal occult blood testing, substituting for more expensive colonoscopies in usual care. Results were broadly consistent across demographic subgroups. More intensive interventions were consistently likely to be cost effective relative to less intensive interventions, with willingness to pay values of $600-$1,200 for an additional person current for screening yielding ≥80% probability of cost effectiveness. Two-year cost effectiveness of a stepped approach to colorectal cancer screening promotion based on EHR data is indicated, but longer-term cost effectiveness requires further study. Copyright © 2015 American Journal of Preventive Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Influence of hydroxyl content of binders on rheological properties of cerium-gadolinium oxide (CGO) screen printing inks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Marani, Debora; Gadea, Christophe; Hjelm, Johan

    2015-01-01

    vinyl resins) were selected and characterized in solution via viscosimetry method. A high degree of hyper-entanglement was observed for ethyl cellulose polymers, whereas a mitigated effect characterized the two vinyl resins. Cerium-gadolinium oxides (CGO)-based inks, prepared using the selected binders......The influence of hydroxyl content of binders on rheological properties of screen printing inks is investigated. The actual amount of hydroxyl groups is correlated to the level of hyper-entanglement that characterizes the binders in solution. Three of the most used binders (ethyl cellulose, and two...

  6. ZebraZoom: an automated program for high-throughput behavioral analysis and categorization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirat, Olivier; Sternberg, Jenna R.; Severi, Kristen E.; Wyart, Claire

    2013-01-01

    The zebrafish larva stands out as an emergent model organism for translational studies involving gene or drug screening thanks to its size, genetics, and permeability. At the larval stage, locomotion occurs in short episodes punctuated by periods of rest. Although phenotyping behavior is a key component of large-scale screens, it has not yet been automated in this model system. We developed ZebraZoom, a program to automatically track larvae and identify maneuvers for many animals performing discrete movements. Our program detects each episodic movement and extracts large-scale statistics on motor patterns to produce a quantification of the locomotor repertoire. We used ZebraZoom to identify motor defects induced by a glycinergic receptor antagonist. The analysis of the blind mutant atoh7 revealed small locomotor defects associated with the mutation. Using multiclass supervised machine learning, ZebraZoom categorized all episodes of movement for each larva into one of three possible maneuvers: slow forward swim, routine turn, and escape. ZebraZoom reached 91% accuracy for categorization of stereotypical maneuvers that four independent experimenters unanimously identified. For all maneuvers in the data set, ZebraZoom agreed with four experimenters in 73.2–82.5% of cases. We modeled the series of maneuvers performed by larvae as Markov chains and observed that larvae often repeated the same maneuvers within a group. When analyzing subsequent maneuvers performed by different larvae, we found that larva–larva interactions occurred as series of escapes. Overall, ZebraZoom reached the level of precision found in manual analysis but accomplished tasks in a high-throughput format necessary for large screens. PMID:23781175

  7. Evaluation of two automated chemiluminescence immunoassays, the LIAISON Treponema Screen and the ARCHITECT Syphilis TP, and the Treponema pallidum particle agglutination test for laboratory diagnosis of syphilis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wellinghausen, Nele; Dietenberger, Hanna

    2011-08-01

    Automated Treponema pallidum-specific chemi-luminescence immunoassays (CLIA) run on random-access analyzers allow for rapid diagnosis of syphilis infection. We evaluated the LIAISON Treponema Screen (LIA) and the ARCHITECT Syphilis TP (ARCH) in comparison to the Treponema pallidum particle agglutination (TPPA) test, as a screening test for syphilis. We performed a prospective study using 577 sera submitted for diagnosis of syphilis, including 318 samples from pregnant women. In addition, 42 stored sera from 32 patients with clinically and serologically characterized syphilis infection were investigated. In the prospective study, the sensitivity and specificity of LIA, ARCH, and TPPA were 100% (18/18), 100% (17/17), and 100% (18/18), and 100% (558/558), 99.8% (552/553), and 99.6% (556/558), respectively. In pregnant women, the specificity of LIA and ARCH was 100% (317/317) and of TPPA 99.7% (316/317). One sample from a child with assumed exposure to maternal antitreponemal antibodies was omitted from analysis. LIA, ARCH, and TPPA were also positive in all investigated sera from patients with known syphilis. Both automated CLIA demonstrated excellent diagnostic sensitivity and specificity when evaluated as a screening test for syphilis under routine conditions of a diagnostic laboratory. Thus, these may be used independently as an alternative to the manual TPPA screen.

  8. Biomek Cell Workstation: A Variable System for Automated Cell Cultivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehmann, R; Severitt, J C; Roddelkopf, T; Junginger, S; Thurow, K

    2016-06-01

    Automated cell cultivation is an important tool for simplifying routine laboratory work. Automated methods are independent of skill levels and daily constitution of laboratory staff in combination with a constant quality and performance of the methods. The Biomek Cell Workstation was configured as a flexible and compatible system. The modified Biomek Cell Workstation enables the cultivation of adherent and suspension cells. Until now, no commercially available systems enabled the automated handling of both types of cells in one system. In particular, the automated cultivation of suspension cells in this form has not been published. The cell counts and viabilities were nonsignificantly decreased for cells cultivated in AutoFlasks in automated handling. The proliferation of manual and automated bioscreening by the WST-1 assay showed a nonsignificant lower proliferation of automatically disseminated cells associated with a mostly lower standard error. The disseminated suspension cell lines showed different pronounced proliferations in descending order, starting with Jurkat cells followed by SEM, Molt4, and RS4 cells having the lowest proliferation. In this respect, we successfully disseminated and screened suspension cells in an automated way. The automated cultivation and dissemination of a variety of suspension cells can replace the manual method. © 2015 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  9. The novel measuring method for screening and assessing chromium content in clothes and shoes materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salerno-Kochan, R.

    2017-10-01

    The aim of this paper is to propose the bioindicative measuring method for screening and assessing the safety of textile and leather materials in relation to chemical threats. This method is based on toxicological assay in which Tetrahymena pyriformis, unicellular organism belonging to protozoans, is used as a test organism. For the realization of the research goal the sensitivity threshold of test organisms to chromium(VI) solutions was identified. The changes in cell development of test organisms in chromium solutions were registered by colorimetric measurements in the presence of alamarBlue® cell viability reagent. Empirical data enabled to fit logistic curves on the base of which the level of chromium toxicity was estimated. In the second step, harmfulness of aqueous extracts obtained from textile and leather samples containing chromium in relation to test organisms was evaluated. The performed research confirmed the high efficiency of the proposed method in screening and assessing chromium content in clothes and shoes materials and showed possibilities of using it in safety assessment of products with regard to chemical risks.

  10. Helios: History and Anatomy of a Successful In-House Enterprise High-Throughput Screening and Profiling Data Analysis System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gubler, Hanspeter; Clare, Nicholas; Galafassi, Laurent; Geissler, Uwe; Girod, Michel; Herr, Guy

    2018-06-01

    We describe the main characteristics of the Novartis Helios data analysis software system (Novartis, Basel, Switzerland) for plate-based screening and profiling assays, which was designed and built about 11 years ago. It has been in productive use for more than 10 years and is one of the important standard software applications running for a large user community at all Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research sites globally. A high degree of automation is reached by embedding the data analysis capabilities into a software ecosystem that deals with the management of samples, plates, and result data files, including automated data loading. The application provides a series of analytical procedures, ranging from very simple to advanced, which can easily be assembled by users in very flexible ways. This also includes the automatic derivation of a large set of quality control (QC) characteristics at every step. Any of the raw, intermediate, and final results and QC-relevant quantities can be easily explored through linked visualizations. Links to global assay metadata management, data warehouses, and an electronic lab notebook system are in place. Automated transfer of relevant data to data warehouses and electronic lab notebook systems are also implemented.

  11. Improvement of cassava for high dry matter, starch and low cyanogenic glucoside content by mutation induction

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nwachukwu, E C; Mbanaso, E N.A.; Ene, L S.O. [Plant Breeding Div., National Root Crops Research Inst., Umudike, Umuahia (Nigeria)

    1997-07-01

    Cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) is an important food in Nigeria. One drawback in its use as a staple food is the presence of cyanogenic glucosides which on hydrolysis produce the very toxic hydrogen cyanide (HCN). To reduce the cyanogenic levels by mutation induction, three locally adopted and high yielding varieties of cassava, TMS 30572, NR 8817 and NR 84111 were irradiated with 20, 25 and 30 Gy gamma rays. There were a wide variation in HCN, dry matter and starch content of irradiated cassava plants, screened in the MV{sub 2} propagation. Fourteen cassavavariant lines were selected for low HCN content, and 22 lines for high dry matter content. These will be further tested for yield in replicated field trials. (author). 7 refs, 3 tabs.

  12. Improvement of cassava for high dry matter, starch and low cyanogenic glucoside content by mutation induction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nwachukwu, E.C.; Mbanaso, E.N.A.; Ene, L.S.O.

    1997-01-01

    Cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) is an important food in Nigeria. One drawback in its use as a staple food is the presence of cyanogenic glucosides which on hydrolysis produce the very toxic hydrogen cyanide (HCN). To reduce the cyanogenic levels by mutation induction, three locally adopted and high yielding varieties of cassava, TMS 30572, NR 8817 and NR 84111 were irradiated with 20, 25 and 30 Gy gamma rays. There were a wide variation in HCN, dry matter and starch content of irradiated cassava plants, screened in the MV 2 propagation. Fourteen cassavavariant lines were selected for low HCN content, and 22 lines for high dry matter content. These will be further tested for yield in replicated field trials. (author). 7 refs, 3 tabs

  13. High-throughput fragment screening by affinity LC-MS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duong-Thi, Minh-Dao; Bergström, Maria; Fex, Tomas; Isaksson, Roland; Ohlson, Sten

    2013-02-01

    Fragment screening, an emerging approach for hit finding in drug discovery, has recently been proven effective by its first approved drug, vemurafenib, for cancer treatment. Techniques such as nuclear magnetic resonance, surface plasmon resonance, and isothemal titration calorimetry, with their own pros and cons, have been employed for screening fragment libraries. As an alternative approach, screening based on high-performance liquid chromatography separation has been developed. In this work, we present weak affinity LC/MS as a method to screen fragments under high-throughput conditions. Affinity-based capillary columns with immobilized thrombin were used to screen a collection of 590 compounds from a fragment library. The collection was divided into 11 mixtures (each containing 35 to 65 fragments) and screened by MS detection. The primary screening was performed in 3500 fragments per day). Thirty hits were defined, which subsequently entered a secondary screening using an active site-blocked thrombin column for confirmation of specificity. One hit showed selective binding to thrombin with an estimated dissociation constant (K (D)) in the 0.1 mM range. This study shows that affinity LC/MS is characterized by high throughput, ease of operation, and low consumption of target and fragments, and therefore it promises to be a valuable method for fragment screening.

  14. Dockomatic - automated ligand creation and docking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bullock, Casey W; Jacob, Reed B; McDougal, Owen M; Hampikian, Greg; Andersen, Tim

    2010-11-08

    The application of computational modeling to rationally design drugs and characterize macro biomolecular receptors has proven increasingly useful due to the accessibility of computing clusters and clouds. AutoDock is a well-known and powerful software program used to model ligand to receptor binding interactions. In its current version, AutoDock requires significant amounts of user time to setup and run jobs, and collect results. This paper presents DockoMatic, a user friendly Graphical User Interface (GUI) application that eases and automates the creation and management of AutoDock jobs for high throughput screening of ligand to receptor interactions. DockoMatic allows the user to invoke and manage AutoDock jobs on a single computer or cluster, including jobs for evaluating secondary ligand interactions. It also automates the process of collecting, summarizing, and viewing results. In addition, DockoMatic automates creation of peptide ligand .pdb files from strings of single-letter amino acid abbreviations. DockoMatic significantly reduces the complexity of managing multiple AutoDock jobs by facilitating ligand and AutoDock job creation and management.

  15. Dockomatic - automated ligand creation and docking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hampikian Greg

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The application of computational modeling to rationally design drugs and characterize macro biomolecular receptors has proven increasingly useful due to the accessibility of computing clusters and clouds. AutoDock is a well-known and powerful software program used to model ligand to receptor binding interactions. In its current version, AutoDock requires significant amounts of user time to setup and run jobs, and collect results. This paper presents DockoMatic, a user friendly Graphical User Interface (GUI application that eases and automates the creation and management of AutoDock jobs for high throughput screening of ligand to receptor interactions. Results DockoMatic allows the user to invoke and manage AutoDock jobs on a single computer or cluster, including jobs for evaluating secondary ligand interactions. It also automates the process of collecting, summarizing, and viewing results. In addition, DockoMatic automates creation of peptide ligand .pdb files from strings of single-letter amino acid abbreviations. Conclusions DockoMatic significantly reduces the complexity of managing multiple AutoDock jobs by facilitating ligand and AutoDock job creation and management.

  16. Screening tool for oropharyngeal dysphagia in stroke - Part I: evidence of validity based on the content and response processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Tatiana Magalhães de; Cola, Paula Cristina; Pernambuco, Leandro de Araújo; Magalhães, Hipólito Virgílio; Magnoni, Carlos Daniel; Silva, Roberta Gonçalves da

    2017-08-17

    The aim of the present study was to identify the evidence of validity based on the content and response process of the Rastreamento de Disfagia Orofaríngea no Acidente Vascular Encefálico (RADAVE; "Screening Tool for Oropharyngeal Dysphagia in Stroke"). The criteria used to elaborate the questions were based on a literature review. A group of judges consisting of 19 different health professionals evaluated the relevance and representativeness of the questions, and the results were analyzed using the Content Validity Index. In order to evidence validity based on the response processes, 23 health professionals administered the screening tool and analyzed the questions using a structured scale and cognitive interview. The RADAVE structured to be applied in two stages. The first version consisted of 18 questions in stage I and 11 questions in stage II. Eight questions in stage I and four in stage II did not reach the minimum Content Validity Index, requiring reformulation by the authors. The cognitive interview demonstrated some misconceptions. New adjustments were made and the final version was produced with 12 questions in stage I and six questions in stage II. It was possible to develop a screening tool for dysphagia in stroke with adequate evidence of validity based on content and response processes. Both validity evidences obtained so far allowed to adjust the screening tool in relation to its construct. The next studies will analyze the other evidences of validity and the measures of accuracy.

  17. Altering user' acceptance of automation through prior automation exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bekier, Marek; Molesworth, Brett R C

    2017-06-01

    Air navigation service providers worldwide see increased use of automation as one solution to overcome the capacity constraints imbedded in the present air traffic management (ATM) system. However, increased use of automation within any system is dependent on user acceptance. The present research sought to determine if the point at which an individual is no longer willing to accept or cooperate with automation can be manipulated. Forty participants underwent training on a computer-based air traffic control programme, followed by two ATM exercises (order counterbalanced), one with and one without the aid of automation. Results revealed after exposure to a task with automation assistance, user acceptance of high(er) levels of automation ('tipping point') decreased; suggesting it is indeed possible to alter automation acceptance. Practitioner Summary: This paper investigates whether the point at which a user of automation rejects automation (i.e. 'tipping point') is constant or can be manipulated. The results revealed after exposure to a task with automation assistance, user acceptance of high(er) levels of automation decreased; suggesting it is possible to alter automation acceptance.

  18. Synthetic Biomaterials to Rival Nature's Complexity-a Path Forward with Combinatorics, High-Throughput Discovery, and High-Content Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Douglas; Lee, Junmin; Kilian, Kristopher A

    2017-10-01

    Cells in tissue receive a host of soluble and insoluble signals in a context-dependent fashion, where integration of these cues through a complex network of signal transduction cascades will define a particular outcome. Biomaterials scientists and engineers are tasked with designing materials that can at least partially recreate this complex signaling milieu towards new materials for biomedical applications. In this progress report, recent advances in high throughput techniques and high content imaging approaches that are facilitating the discovery of efficacious biomaterials are described. From microarrays of synthetic polymers, peptides and full-length proteins, to designer cell culture systems that present multiple biophysical and biochemical cues in tandem, it is discussed how the integration of combinatorics with high content imaging and analysis is essential to extracting biologically meaningful information from large scale cellular screens to inform the design of next generation biomaterials. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  19. Development and implementation of a high-throughput compound screening assay for targeting disrupted ER calcium homeostasis in Alzheimer's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamran Honarnejad

    Full Text Available Disrupted intracellular calcium homeostasis is believed to occur early in the cascade of events leading to Alzheimer's disease (AD pathology. Particularly familial AD mutations linked to Presenilins result in exaggerated agonist-evoked calcium release from endoplasmic reticulum (ER. Here we report the development of a fully automated high-throughput calcium imaging assay utilizing a genetically-encoded FRET-based calcium indicator at single cell resolution for compound screening. The established high-throughput screening assay offers several advantages over conventional high-throughput calcium imaging technologies. We employed this assay for drug discovery in AD by screening compound libraries consisting of over 20,000 small molecules followed by structure-activity-relationship analysis. This led to the identification of Bepridil, a calcium channel antagonist drug in addition to four further lead structures capable of normalizing the potentiated FAD-PS1-induced calcium release from ER. Interestingly, it has recently been reported that Bepridil can reduce Aβ production by lowering BACE1 activity. Indeed, we also detected lowered Aβ, increased sAPPα and decreased sAPPβ fragment levels upon Bepridil treatment. The latter findings suggest that Bepridil may provide a multifactorial therapeutic modality for AD by simultaneously addressing multiple aspects of the disease.

  20. Hybrid quadrupole-orbitrap mass spectrometry analysis with accurate-mass database and parallel reaction monitoring for high-throughput screening and quantification of multi-xenobiotics in honey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yi; Zhang, Jinzhen; Jin, Yue; Wang, Lin; Zhao, Wen; Zhang, Wenwen; Zhai, Lifei; Zhang, Yaping; Zhang, Yongxin; Zhou, Jinhui

    2016-01-15

    This study reports a rapid, automated screening and quantification method for the determination of multi-xenobiotic residues in honey using ultra-high performance liquid chromatography-hybrid quadrupole-Orbitrap mass spectrometry (UHPLC-Q-Orbitrap) with a user-built accurate-mass database plus parallel reaction monitoring (PRM). The database contains multi-xenobiotic information including formulas, adduct types, theoretical exact mass and retention time, characteristic fragment ions, ion ratios, and mass accuracies. A simple sample preparation method was developed to reduce xenobiotic loss in the honey samples. The screening method was validated based on retention time deviation, mass accuracy via full scan-data-dependent MS/MS (full scan-ddMS2), multi-isotope ratio, characteristic ion ratio, sensitivity, and positive/negative switching performance between the spiked sample and corresponding standard solution. The quantification method based on the PRM mode is a promising new quantitative tool which we validated in terms of selectivity, linearity, recovery (accuracy), repeatability (precision), decision limit (CCα), detection capability (CCβ), matrix effects, and carry-over. The optimized methods proposed in this study enable the automated screening and quantification of 157 compounds in less than 15 min in honey. The results of this study, as they represent a convenient protocol for large-scale screening and quantification, also provide a research approach for analysis of various contaminants in other matrices. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Team performance in networked supervisory control of unmanned air vehicles: effects of automation, working memory, and communication content.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKendrick, Ryan; Shaw, Tyler; de Visser, Ewart; Saqer, Haneen; Kidwell, Brian; Parasuraman, Raja

    2014-05-01

    Assess team performance within a net-worked supervisory control setting while manipulating automated decision aids and monitoring team communication and working memory ability. Networked systems such as multi-unmanned air vehicle (UAV) supervision have complex properties that make prediction of human-system performance difficult. Automated decision aid can provide valuable information to operators, individual abilities can limit or facilitate team performance, and team communication patterns can alter how effectively individuals work together. We hypothesized that reliable automation, higher working memory capacity, and increased communication rates of task-relevant information would offset performance decrements attributed to high task load. Two-person teams performed a simulated air defense task with two levels of task load and three levels of automated aid reliability. Teams communicated and received decision aid messages via chat window text messages. Task Load x Automation effects were significant across all performance measures. Reliable automation limited the decline in team performance with increasing task load. Average team spatial working memory was a stronger predictor than other measures of team working memory. Frequency of team rapport and enemy location communications positively related to team performance, and word count was negatively related to team performance. Reliable decision aiding mitigated team performance decline during increased task load during multi-UAV supervisory control. Team spatial working memory, communication of spatial information, and team rapport predicted team success. An automated decision aid can improve team performance under high task load. Assessment of spatial working memory and the communication of task-relevant information can help in operator and team selection in supervisory control systems.

  2. Next frontier in agent-based complex automated negotiation

    CERN Document Server

    Ito, Takayuki; Zhang, Minjie; Robu, Valentin

    2015-01-01

    This book focuses on automated negotiations based on multi-agent systems. It is intended for researchers and students in various fields involving autonomous agents and multi-agent systems, such as e-commerce tools, decision-making and negotiation support systems, and collaboration tools. The contents will help them to understand the concept of automated negotiations, negotiation protocols, negotiating agents’ strategies, and the applications of those strategies. In this book, some negotiation protocols focusing on the multiple interdependent issues in negotiations are presented, making it possible to find high-quality solutions for the complex agents’ utility functions. This book is a compilation of the extended versions of the very best papers selected from the many that were presented at the International Workshop on Agent-Based Complex Automated Negotiations.

  3. In vivo robotics: the automation of neuroscience and other intact-system biological fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kodandaramaiah, Suhasa B; Boyden, Edward S; Forest, Craig R

    2013-12-01

    Robotic and automation technologies have played a huge role in in vitro biological science, having proved critical for scientific endeavors such as genome sequencing and high-throughput screening. Robotic and automation strategies are beginning to play a greater role in in vivo and in situ sciences, especially when it comes to the difficult in vivo experiments required for understanding the neural mechanisms of behavior and disease. In this perspective, we discuss the prospects for robotics and automation to influence neuroscientific and intact-system biology fields. We discuss how robotic innovations might be created to open up new frontiers in basic and applied neuroscience and present a concrete example with our recent automation of in vivo whole-cell patch clamp electrophysiology of neurons in the living mouse brain. © 2013 New York Academy of Sciences.

  4. Automated touch screen device for recording complex rodent behaviors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mabrouk, O.S.; Dripps, I.J.; Ramani, S.; Chang, C.; Han, J.L.; Rice, KC; Jutkiewicz, E.M.

    2016-01-01

    Background Monitoring mouse behavior is a critical step in the development of modern pharmacotherapies. New Method Here we describe the application of a novel method that utilizes a touch display computer (tablet) and software to detect, record, and report fine motor behaviors. A consumer-grade tablet device is placed in the bottom of a specially made acrylic cage allowing the animal to walk on the device (MouseTrapp). We describe its application in open field (for general locomotor studies) which measures step lengths and velocity. The device can perform light-dark (anxiety) tests by illuminating half of the screen and keeping the other half darkened. A divider is built into the lid of the device allowing the animal free access to either side. Results Treating mice with amphetamine and the delta opioid peptide receptor agonist SNC80 stimulated locomotor activity on the device. Amphetamine increased step velocity but not step length during its peak effect (40–70 min after treatment), thus indicating detection of subtle amphetamine-induced effects. Animals showed a preference (74% of time spent) for the darkened half compared to the illuminated side. Comparison with Existing Method Animals were videotaped within the chamber to compare quadrant crosses to detected motion on the device. The slope, duration and magnitude of quadrant crosses tightly correlated with overall locomotor activity as detected by Mousetrapp. Conclusions We suggest that modern touch display devices such as MouseTrapp will be an important step toward automation of behavioral analyses for characterizing phenotypes and drug effects. PMID:24952323

  5. New information on high risk breast screening

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Riedl, C.C.; Ponhold, L.; Gruber, R.; Pinker, K.; Helbich, T.H.

    2010-01-01

    Women with an elevated risk for breast cancer require intensified screening beginning at an early age. Such high risk screening differs considerably from screening in the general population. After an expert has evaluated the exact risk a breast MRI examination should be offered at least once a year and beginning latest at the age of 30 depending on the patients risk category. Complementary mammograms should not be performed before the age of 35. An additional ultrasound examination is no longer recommended. To ensure a high sensitivity and specificity high risk screening should be performed only at a nationally or regionally approved and audited service. Adequate knowledge about the phenotypical characteristics of familial breast cancer is essential. Besides the common malignant phenotypes, benign morphologies (round or oval shape and smooth margins) as well as a low prevalence of calcifications have been described. Using MRI benign contrast media kinetics as well as non-solid lesions with focal, regional and segmental enhancement can often be visualized. (orig.) [de

  6. Tiered High-Throughput Screening Approach to Identify ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    High-throughput screening (HTS) for potential thyroid–disrupting chemicals requires a system of assays to capture multiple molecular-initiating events (MIEs) that converge on perturbed thyroid hormone (TH) homeostasis. Screening for MIEs specific to TH-disrupting pathways is limited in the US EPA ToxCast screening assay portfolio. To fill one critical screening gap, the Amplex UltraRed-thyroperoxidase (AUR-TPO) assay was developed to identify chemicals that inhibit TPO, as decreased TPO activity reduces TH synthesis. The ToxCast Phase I and II chemical libraries, comprised of 1,074 unique chemicals, were initially screened using a single, high concentration to identify potential TPO inhibitors. Chemicals positive in the single concentration screen were retested in concentration-response. Due to high false positive rates typically observed with loss-of-signal assays such as AUR-TPO, we also employed two additional assays in parallel to identify possible sources of nonspecific assay signal loss, enabling stratification of roughly 300 putative TPO inhibitors based upon selective AUR-TPO activity. A cell-free luciferase inhibition assay was used to identify nonspecific enzyme inhibition among the putative TPO inhibitors, and a cytotoxicity assay using a human cell line was used to estimate the cellular tolerance limit. Additionally, the TPO inhibition activities of 150 chemicals were compared between the AUR-TPO and an orthogonal peroxidase oxidation assay using

  7. Content-driven analysis of an online community for smoking cessation: integration of qualitative techniques, automated text analysis, and affiliation networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myneni, Sahiti; Fujimoto, Kayo; Cobb, Nathan; Cohen, Trevor

    2015-06-01

    We identified content-specific patterns of network diffusion underlying smoking cessation in the context of online platforms, with the aim of generating targeted intervention strategies. QuitNet is an online social network for smoking cessation. We analyzed 16 492 de-identified peer-to-peer messages from 1423 members, posted between March 1 and April 30, 2007. Our mixed-methods approach comprised qualitative coding, automated text analysis, and affiliation network analysis to identify, visualize, and analyze content-specific communication patterns underlying smoking behavior. Themes we identified in QuitNet messages included relapse, QuitNet-specific traditions, and cravings. QuitNet members who were exposed to other abstinent members by exchanging content related to interpersonal themes (e.g., social support, traditions, progress) tended to abstain. Themes found in other types of content did not show significant correlation with abstinence. Modeling health-related affiliation networks through content-driven methods can enable the identification of specific content related to higher abstinence rates, which facilitates targeted health promotion.

  8. Application of ToxCast High-Throughput Screening and ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slide presentation at the SETAC annual meeting on High-Throughput Screening and Modeling Approaches to Identify Steroidogenesis Distruptors Slide presentation at the SETAC annual meeting on High-Throughput Screening and Modeling Approaches to Identify Steroidogenssis Distruptors

  9. A high-content subtractive screen for selecting small molecules affecting internalization of GPCRs

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Kwon, Y-J

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available was screened against seven agonist-induced GPCR internalization cell models as well as transferrin uptake in human embryonic kidney cells. Molecules acting on a single receptor were identified through excluding pan-specific compounds affecting housekeeping...

  10. High-throughput mouse genotyping using robotics automation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linask, Kaari L; Lo, Cecilia W

    2005-02-01

    The use of mouse models is rapidly expanding in biomedical research. This has dictated the need for the rapid genotyping of mutant mouse colonies for more efficient utilization of animal holding space. We have established a high-throughput protocol for mouse genotyping using two robotics workstations: a liquid-handling robot to assemble PCR and a microfluidics electrophoresis robot for PCR product analysis. This dual-robotics setup incurs lower start-up costs than a fully automated system while still minimizing human intervention. Essential to this automation scheme is the construction of a database containing customized scripts for programming the robotics workstations. Using these scripts and the robotics systems, multiple combinations of genotyping reactions can be assembled simultaneously, allowing even complex genotyping data to be generated rapidly with consistency and accuracy. A detailed protocol, database, scripts, and additional background information are available at http://dir.nhlbi.nih.gov/labs/ldb-chd/autogene/.

  11. Automated multi-lesion detection for referable diabetic retinopathy in indigenous health care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pires, Ramon; Carvalho, Tiago; Spurling, Geoffrey; Goldenstein, Siome; Wainer, Jacques; Luckie, Alan; Jelinek, Herbert F; Rocha, Anderson

    2015-01-01

    Diabetic Retinopathy (DR) is a complication of diabetes mellitus that affects more than one-quarter of the population with diabetes, and can lead to blindness if not discovered in time. An automated screening enables the identification of patients who need further medical attention. This study aimed to classify retinal images of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples utilizing an automated computer-based multi-lesion eye screening program for diabetic retinopathy. The multi-lesion classifier was trained on 1,014 images from the São Paulo Eye Hospital and tested on retinal images containing no DR-related lesion, single lesions, or multiple types of lesions from the Inala Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health care centre. The automated multi-lesion classifier has the potential to enhance the efficiency of clinical practice delivering diabetic retinopathy screening. Our program does not necessitate image samples for training from any specific ethnic group or population being assessed and is independent of image pre- or post-processing to identify retinal lesions. In this Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population, the program achieved 100% sensitivity and 88.9% specificity in identifying bright lesions, while detection of red lesions achieved a sensitivity of 67% and specificity of 95%. When both bright and red lesions were present, 100% sensitivity with 88.9% specificity was obtained. All results obtained with this automated screening program meet WHO standards for diabetic retinopathy screening.

  12. Multiplexing spheroid volume, resazurin and acid phosphatase viability assays for high-throughput screening of tumour spheroids and stem cell neurospheres.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Delyan P Ivanov

    Full Text Available Three-dimensional cell culture has many advantages over monolayer cultures, and spheroids have been hailed as the best current representation of small avascular tumours in vitro. However their adoption in regular screening programs has been hindered by uneven culture growth, poor reproducibility and lack of high-throughput analysis methods for 3D. The objective of this study was to develop a method for a quick and reliable anticancer drug screen in 3D for tumour and human foetal brain tissue in order to investigate drug effectiveness and selective cytotoxic effects. Commercially available ultra-low attachment 96-well round-bottom plates were employed to culture spheroids in a rapid, reproducible manner amenable to automation. A set of three mechanistically different methods for spheroid health assessment (Spheroid volume, metabolic activity and acid phosphatase enzyme activity were validated against cell numbers in healthy and drug-treated spheroids. An automated open-source ImageJ macro was developed to enable high-throughput volume measurements. Although spheroid volume determination was superior to the other assays, multiplexing it with resazurin reduction and phosphatase activity produced a richer picture of spheroid condition. The ability to distinguish between effects on malignant and the proliferating component of normal brain was tested using etoposide on UW228-3 medulloblastoma cell line and human neural stem cells. At levels below 10 µM etoposide exhibited higher toxicity towards proliferating stem cells, whereas at concentrations above 10 µM the tumour spheroids were affected to a greater extent. The high-throughput assay procedures use ready-made plates, open-source software and are compatible with standard plate readers, therefore offering high predictive power with substantial savings in time and money.

  13. Automated detection of fundus photographic red lesions in diabetic retinopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Michael; Godt, Jannik; Larsen, Nicolai; Lund-Andersen, Henrik; Sjølie, Anne Katrin; Agardh, Elisabet; Kalm, Helle; Grunkin, Michael; Owens, David R

    2003-02-01

    To compare a fundus image-analysis algorithm for automated detection of hemorrhages and microaneurysms with visual detection of retinopathy in patients with diabetes. Four hundred fundus photographs (35-mm color transparencies) were obtained in 200 eyes of 100 patients with diabetes who were randomly selected from the Welsh Community Diabetic Retinopathy Study. A gold standard reference was defined by classifying each patient as having or not having diabetic retinopathy based on overall visual grading of the digitized transparencies. A single-lesion visual grading was made independently, comprising meticulous outlining of all single lesions in all photographs and used to develop the automated red lesion detection system. A comparison of visual and automated single-lesion detection in replicating the overall visual grading was then performed. Automated red lesion detection demonstrated a specificity of 71.4% and a resulting sensitivity of 96.7% in detecting diabetic retinopathy when applied at a tentative threshold setting for use in diabetic retinopathy screening. The accuracy of 79% could be raised to 85% by adjustment of a single user-supplied parameter determining the balance between the screening priorities, for which a considerable range of options was demonstrated by the receiver-operating characteristic (area under the curve 90.3%). The agreement of automated lesion detection with overall visual grading (0.659) was comparable to the mean agreement of six ophthalmologists (0.648). Detection of diabetic retinopathy by automated detection of single fundus lesions can be achieved with a performance comparable to that of experienced ophthalmologists. The results warrant further investigation of automated fundus image analysis as a tool for diabetic retinopathy screening.

  14. Pilot opinions on high level flight deck automation issues: Toward the development of a design philosophy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tenney, Yvette J.; Rogers, William H.; Pew, Richard W.

    1995-01-01

    There has been much concern in recent years about the rapid increase in automation on commercial flight decks. The survey was composed of three major sections. The first section asked pilots to rate different automation components that exist on the latest commercial aircraft regarding their obtrusiveness and the attention and effort required in using them. The second section addressed general 'automation philosophy' issues. The third section focused on issues related to levels and amount of automation. The results indicate that pilots of advanced aircraft like their automation, use it, and would welcome more automation. However, they also believe that automation has many disadvantages, especially fully autonomous automation. They want their automation to be simple and reliable and to produce predictable results. The biggest needs for higher levels of automation were in pre-flight, communication, systems management, and task management functions, planning as well as response tasks, and high workload situations. There is an irony and a challenge in the implications of these findings. On the one hand pilots would like new automation to be simple and reliable, but they need it to support the most complex part of the job--managing and planning tasks in high workload situations.

  15. High throughput detection of Coxiella burnetii by real-time PCR with internal control system and automated DNA preparation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kramme Stefanie

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Coxiella burnetii is the causative agent of Q-fever, a widespread zoonosis. Due to its high environmental stability and infectivity it is regarded as a category B biological weapon agent. In domestic animals infection remains either asymptomatic or presents as infertility or abortion. Clinical presentation in humans can range from mild flu-like illness to acute pneumonia and hepatitis. Endocarditis represents the most common form of chronic Q-fever. In humans serology is the gold standard for diagnosis but is inadequate for early case detection. In order to serve as a diagnostic tool in an eventual biological weapon attack or in local epidemics we developed a real-time 5'nuclease based PCR assay with an internal control system. To facilitate high-throughput an automated extraction procedure was evaluated. Results To determine the minimum number of copies that are detectable at 95% chance probit analysis was used. Limit of detection in blood was 2,881 copies/ml [95%CI, 2,188–4,745 copies/ml] with a manual extraction procedure and 4,235 copies/ml [95%CI, 3,143–7,428 copies/ml] with a fully automated extraction procedure, respectively. To demonstrate clinical application a total of 72 specimens of animal origin were compared with respect to manual and automated extraction. A strong correlation between both methods was observed rendering both methods suitable. Testing of 247 follow up specimens of animal origin from a local Q-fever epidemic rendered real-time PCR more sensitive than conventional PCR. Conclusion A sensitive and thoroughly evaluated real-time PCR was established. Its high-throughput mode may show a useful approach to rapidly screen samples in local outbreaks for other organisms relevant for humans or animals. Compared to a conventional PCR assay sensitivity of real-time PCR was higher after testing samples from a local Q-fever outbreak.

  16. Preface to the special section on human factors and automation in vehicles: designing highly automated vehicles with the driver in mind.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merat, Natasha; Lee, John D

    2012-10-01

    This special section brings together diverse research regarding driver interaction with advanced automotive technology to guide design of increasingly automated vehicles. Rapidly evolving vehicle automation will likely change cars and trucks more in the next 5 years than the preceding 50, radically redefining what it means to drive. This special section includes 10 articles from European and North American researchers reporting simulator and naturalistic driving studies. Little research has considered the consequences of fully automated driving, with most focusing on lane-keeping and speed control systems individually. The studies reveal two underlying design philosophies: automate driving versus support driving. Results of several studies, consistent with previous research in other domains, suggest that the automate philosophy can delay driver responses to incidents in which the driver has to intervene and take control from the automation. Understanding how to orchestrate the transfer or sharing of control between the system and the driver, particularly in critical incidents, emerges as a central challenge. Designers should not assume that automation can substitute seamlessly for a human driver, nor can they assume that the driver can safely accommodate the limitations of automation. Designers, policy makers, and researchers must give careful consideration to what role the person should have in highly automated vehicles and how to support the driver if the driver is to be responsible for vehicle control. As in other domains, driving safety increasingly depends on the combined performance of the human and automation, and successful designs will depend on recognizing and supporting the new roles of the driver.

  17. Screening of HIV-1 Protease Using a Combination of an Ultra-High-Throughput Fluorescent-Based Assay and RapidFire Mass Spectrometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meng, Juncai; Lai, Ming-Tain; Munshi, Vandna; Grobler, Jay; McCauley, John; Zuck, Paul; Johnson, Eric N; Uebele, Victor N; Hermes, Jeffrey D; Adam, Gregory C

    2015-06-01

    HIV-1 protease (PR) represents one of the primary targets for developing antiviral agents for the treatment of HIV-infected patients. To identify novel PR inhibitors, a label-free, high-throughput mass spectrometry (HTMS) assay was developed using the RapidFire platform and applied as an orthogonal assay to confirm hits identified in a fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET)-based primary screen of > 1 million compounds. For substrate selection, a panel of peptide substrates derived from natural processing sites for PR was evaluated on the RapidFire platform. As a result, KVSLNFPIL, a new substrate measured to have a ~ 20- and 60-fold improvement in k cat/K m over the frequently used sequences SQNYPIVQ and SQNYPIV, respectively, was identified for the HTMS screen. About 17% of hits from the FRET-based primary screen were confirmed in the HTMS confirmatory assay including all 304 known PR inhibitors in the set, demonstrating that the HTMS assay is effective at triaging false-positives while capturing true hits. Hence, with a sampling rate of ~7 s per well, the RapidFire HTMS assay enables the high-throughput evaluation of peptide substrates and functions as an efficient tool for hits triage in the discovery of novel PR inhibitors. © 2015 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  18. Automated Fast Screening Method for Cocaine Identification in Seized Drug Samples Using a Portable Fourier Transform Infrared (FT-IR) Instrument.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mainali, Dipak; Seelenbinder, John

    2016-05-01

    Quick and presumptive identification of seized drug samples without destroying evidence is necessary for law enforcement officials to control the trafficking and abuse of drugs. This work reports an automated screening method to detect the presence of cocaine in seized samples using portable Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectrometers. The method is based on the identification of well-defined characteristic vibrational frequencies related to the functional group of the cocaine molecule and is fully automated through the use of an expert system. Traditionally, analysts look for key functional group bands in the infrared spectra and characterization of the molecules present is dependent on user interpretation. This implies the need for user expertise, especially in samples that likely are mixtures. As such, this approach is biased and also not suitable for non-experts. The method proposed in this work uses the well-established "center of gravity" peak picking mathematical algorithm and combines it with the conditional reporting feature in MicroLab software to provide an automated method that can be successfully employed by users with varied experience levels. The method reports the confidence level of cocaine present only when a certain number of cocaine related peaks are identified by the automated method. Unlike library search and chemometric methods that are dependent on the library database or the training set samples used to build the calibration model, the proposed method is relatively independent of adulterants and diluents present in the seized mixture. This automated method in combination with a portable FT-IR spectrometer provides law enforcement officials, criminal investigators, or forensic experts a quick field-based prescreening capability for the presence of cocaine in seized drug samples. © The Author(s) 2016.

  19. Advances in cervical screening technology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoler, M H

    2000-03-01

    The Pap smear unquestionably is a successful screening test for cervical cancer. However, recent advances in technology have raised questions regarding whether the conventional Pap smear is still the standard of care. This article relates issues of screening and cost-effectiveness to the state of the art in thin layer preparations, cytology automation, human papillomavirus screening, human papillomavirus vaccines, and other cervical screening adjuncts. Perhaps nowhere in medicine is clinical decision making being more strongly influenced by market and other external forces than in cervical cytopathology.

  20. Immense random colocalization, revealed by automated high content image cytometry, seriously questions FISH as gold standard for detecting EML4-ALK fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smuk, Gábor; Tornóczky, Tamás; Pajor, László; Chudoba, Ilse; Kajtár, Béla; Sárosi, Veronika; Pajor, Gábor

    2018-05-19

    EML4-ALK gene fusion (inv2(p21p23)) of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) predisposes to tyrosine kinase inhibitor treatment. One of the gold standard diagnostics is the dual color (DC) break-apart (BA) FISH technique, however, the unusual closeness of the involved genes has been suggested to raise likelihood of random co-localization (RCL) of signals. Although this is suspected to decrease sensitivity (often to as low as 40-70%), the exact level and effect of RCL has not been revealed thus far. Signal distances were analyzed to the 0.1 µm precision in more than 25,000 nuclei, via automated high content-image cytometry. Negative and positive controls were created using conventional DC BA-, and inv2(p21p23) mimicking probe-sets, respectively. Average distance between red and green signals was 9.72 pixels (px) (±5.14px) and 3.28px (±2.44px), in positives and negatives, respectively; overlap in distribution being 41%. Specificity and sensitivity of correctly determining ALK status was 97% and 29%, respectively. When investigating inv2(p21p23) with DC BA FISH, specificity is high, but seven out of ten aberrant nuclei are inevitably falsely classified as negative, due to the extreme level of RCL. Together with genetic heterogeneity and dilution effect of non-tumor cells in NSCLC, this immense analytical false negativity is the primary cause behind the often described low diagnostic sensitivity. These results convincingly suggest that if FISH is to remain a gold standard for detecting the therapy relevant inv(2), either a modified evaluation protocol, or a more reliable probe-design should be considered than the current DC BA one. © 2018 International Society for Advancement of Cytometry. © 2018 International Society for Advancement of Cytometry.

  1. Driver-centred vehicle automation: using network analysis for agent-based modelling of the driver in highly automated driving systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banks, Victoria A; Stanton, Neville A

    2016-11-01

    To the average driver, the concept of automation in driving infers that they can become completely 'hands and feet free'. This is a common misconception, however, one that has been shown through the application of Network Analysis to new Cruise Assist technologies that may feature on our roads by 2020. Through the adoption of a Systems Theoretic approach, this paper introduces the concept of driver-initiated automation which reflects the role of the driver in highly automated driving systems. Using a combination of traditional task analysis and the application of quantitative network metrics, this agent-based modelling paper shows how the role of the driver remains an integral part of the driving system implicating the need for designers to ensure they are provided with the tools necessary to remain actively in-the-loop despite giving increasing opportunities to delegate their control to the automated subsystems. Practitioner Summary: This paper describes and analyses a driver-initiated command and control system of automation using representations afforded by task and social networks to understand how drivers remain actively involved in the task. A network analysis of different driver commands suggests that such a strategy does maintain the driver in the control loop.

  2. Applications of ambient mass spectrometry in high-throughput screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Li-Ping; Feng, Bao-Sheng; Yang, Jian-Wang; Chang, Cui-Lan; Bai, Yu; Liu, Hu-Wei

    2013-06-07

    The development of rapid screening and identification techniques is of great importance for drug discovery, doping control, forensic identification, food safety and quality control. Ambient mass spectrometry (AMS) allows rapid and direct analysis of various samples in open air with little sample preparation. Recently, its applications in high-throughput screening have been in rapid progress. During the past decade, various ambient ionization techniques have been developed and applied in high-throughput screening. This review discusses typical applications of AMS, including DESI (desorption electrospray ionization), DART (direct analysis in real time), EESI (extractive electrospray ionization), etc., in high-throughput screening (HTS).

  3. Automation of a high-speed imaging setup for differential viscosity measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hurth, C.; Duane, B.; Whitfield, D.; Smith, S.; Nordquist, A.; Zenhausern, F.

    2013-12-01

    We present the automation of a setup previously used to assess the viscosity of pleural effusion samples and discriminate between transudates and exudates, an important first step in clinical diagnostics. The presented automation includes the design, testing, and characterization of a vacuum-actuated loading station that handles the 2 mm glass spheres used as sensors, as well as the engineering of electronic Printed Circuit Board (PCB) incorporating a microcontroller and their synchronization with a commercial high-speed camera operating at 10 000 fps. The hereby work therefore focuses on the instrumentation-related automation efforts as the general method and clinical application have been reported earlier [Hurth et al., J. Appl. Phys. 110, 034701 (2011)]. In addition, we validate the performance of the automated setup with the calibration for viscosity measurements using water/glycerol standard solutions and the determination of the viscosity of an "unknown" solution of hydroxyethyl cellulose.

  4. Automation of a high-speed imaging setup for differential viscosity measurements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hurth, C.; Duane, B.; Whitfield, D.; Smith, S.; Nordquist, A.; Zenhausern, F. [Center for Applied Nanobioscience and Medicine, The University of Arizona College of Medicine, 425 N 5th Street, Phoenix, Arizona 85004 (United States)

    2013-12-28

    We present the automation of a setup previously used to assess the viscosity of pleural effusion samples and discriminate between transudates and exudates, an important first step in clinical diagnostics. The presented automation includes the design, testing, and characterization of a vacuum-actuated loading station that handles the 2 mm glass spheres used as sensors, as well as the engineering of electronic Printed Circuit Board (PCB) incorporating a microcontroller and their synchronization with a commercial high-speed camera operating at 10 000 fps. The hereby work therefore focuses on the instrumentation-related automation efforts as the general method and clinical application have been reported earlier [Hurth et al., J. Appl. Phys. 110, 034701 (2011)]. In addition, we validate the performance of the automated setup with the calibration for viscosity measurements using water/glycerol standard solutions and the determination of the viscosity of an “unknown” solution of hydroxyethyl cellulose.

  5. High-throughput bioaffinity mass spectrometry for screening and identification of designer anabolic steroids in dietary supplements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aqai, Payam; Cevik, Ebru; Gerssen, Arjen; Haasnoot, Willem; Nielen, Michel W F

    2013-03-19

    A generic high-throughput bioaffinity liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (BioMS) approach was developed and applied for the screening and identification of known and unknown recombinant human sex hormone-binding globulin (rhSHBG)-binding designer steroids in dietary supplements. For screening, a semi-automated competitive inhibition binding assay was combined with fast ultrahigh-performance-LC-electrospray ionization-triple-quadrupole-MS (UPLC-QqQ-MS). 17β-Testosterone-D3 was used as the stable isotope label of which the binding to rhSHBG-coated paramagnetic microbeads was inhibited by any other binding (designer) steroid. The assay was performed in a 96-well plate and combined with the fast LC-MS, 96 measurements could be performed within 4 h. The concentration-dependent inhibition of the label by steroids in buffer and dietary supplements was demonstrated. Following an adjusted bioaffinity isolation procedure, suspect extracts were injected into a chip-UPLC(NanoTile)-Q-time-of-flight-MS system for full-scan accurate mass identification. Next to known steroids, 1-testosterone was identified in three of the supplements studied and the designer steroid tetrahydrogestrinone was identified in a spiked supplement. The generic steroid-binding assay can be used for high-throughput screening of androgens, estrogens, and gestagens in dietary supplements to fight doping. When combined with chip-UPLC-MS, it is a powerful tool for early warning of unknown emerging rhSHBG bioactive designer steroids in dietary supplements.

  6. Fully automated drug screening of dried blood spots using online LC-MS/MS analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefan Gaugler

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available A new and fully automated workflow for the cost effective drug screening of large populations based on the dried blood spot (DBS technology was introduced in this study. DBS were prepared by spotting 15 μL of whole blood, previously spiked with alprazolam, amphetamine, cocaine, codeine, diazepam, fentanyl, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD, 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphet-amine (MDMA, methadone, methamphetamine, morphine and oxycodone onto filter paper cards. The dried spots were scanned, spiked with deuterated standards and directly extracted. The extract was transferred online to an analytical LC column and then to the electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry system. All drugs were quantified at their cut-off level and good precision and correlation within the calibration range was obtained. The method was finally applied to DBS samples from two patients with back pain and codeine and oxycodone could be identified and quantified accurately below the level of misuse of 89.6 ng/mL and 39.6 ng/mL respectively.

  7. Identification of novel micropollutants in wastewater by a combination of suspect and nontarget screening

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hug, Christine; Ulrich, Nadin; Schulze, Tobias; Brack, Werner; Krauss, Martin

    2014-01-01

    To detect site-specific, suspected and formerly unknown contaminants in a wastewater treatment plant effluent, we established a screening procedure based on liquid chromatography–high resolution mass spectrometry (LC–HRMS) with stepwise identification schemes. Based on automated substructure searches a list of 2160 suspected site-specific and documented water contaminants was reduced to those amenable to LC–HRMS. After searching chromatograms for exact masses of suspects, presumably false positive detections were stepwise excluded by retention time prediction, the evaluation of isotope patterns, ionization behavior, and HRMS/MS spectra. In nontarget analysis, peaks for identification were selected based on distinctive isotope patterns and intensity. The stepwise identification of nontarget compounds was automated by a plausibility check of molecular formulas using the Seven Golden Rules, an exclusion of compounds with presumably low commercial importance and an automated HRMS/MS evaluation. Six suspected and five nontarget chemicals were identified, of which two have not been previously reported as environmental pollutants. -- Highlights: • A LC–HRMS-based suspect and nontarget screening was applied to wastewater. • Manual data processing to identify candidate structures was accelerated by automated software-based procedure. • Identification was supported by sophisticated analytical methods such as deuterium exchange. • Eleven site-specific and formerly unknown compounds were identified. • We provide a framework to extend analytical procedures from target to suspect and nontarget compounds. -- A screening procedure based on liquid chromatography–high resolution mass spectrometry (LC–HRMS) with a systematic data evaluation was established, which allowed detecting suspected and formerly unknown contaminants in wastewater

  8. Automated high-throughput flow-through real-time diagnostic system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regan, John Frederick

    2012-10-30

    An automated real-time flow-through system capable of processing multiple samples in an asynchronous, simultaneous, and parallel fashion for nucleic acid extraction and purification, followed by assay assembly, genetic amplification, multiplex detection, analysis, and decontamination. The system is able to hold and access an unlimited number of fluorescent reagents that may be used to screen samples for the presence of specific sequences. The apparatus works by associating extracted and purified sample with a series of reagent plugs that have been formed in a flow channel and delivered to a flow-through real-time amplification detector that has a multiplicity of optical windows, to which the sample-reagent plugs are placed in an operative position. The diagnostic apparatus includes sample multi-position valves, a master sample multi-position valve, a master reagent multi-position valve, reagent multi-position valves, and an optical amplification/detection system.

  9. Evaluation of the Lumipulse G TP-N Chemiluminescent Immunoassay as a Syphilis Screening Test.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz, Daniel A; Loeffelholz, Michael J

    2017-11-01

    A syphilis diagnosis is often aided by the detection of treponemal and nontreponemal antibodies. Automated treponemal antibody detection systems enable high-volume clinical laboratories to perform syphilis screening at a faster pace with lower labor costs. The Lumipulse G TP-N chemiluminescent immunoassay is an automated system that qualitatively detects IgG and IgM antibodies against Treponema pallidum antigens in human serum and plasma. To assess performance characteristics and workflow efficiency, the Lumipulse G TP-N assay was compared to the Bioplex 2200 Syphilis IgG multiplex flow immunoassay. Among the 4,134 routine and HIV samples tested by the two automated assays, the percentage of agreement was excellent at 99.0% (95% confidence interval [CI], 98.6% to 99.2%; κ, 0.89), with the Lumipulse G TP-N having a shorter time to first and subsequent results. All specimens with reactive syphilis screening results were further tested by rapid plasma reagin (RPR) and Treponema pallidum particle agglutination (TP·PA) testing ( n = 231). The results from the RPR-reactive samples ( n = 82) showed complete concordance with the two automated assays, while the TP·PA assay displayed some discrepancies. The positive percent agreement (PPA) and negative percent agreement (NPA) between the TP·PA test and the Lumipulse G TP-N test were 98.9% and 77.3%, respectively. The Bioplex 2200 Syphilis IgG immunoassay displayed a similar PPA (100%) but a substantially lower NPA (15.9%). Patient chart reviews of discrepant results suggested that the Lumipulse G TP-N assay produced 27 fewer falsely reactive results and can reduce the amount of additional confirmatory RPR and TP·PA testing needed. The analogous performance characteristics of the two automated systems indicate that the Lumipulse G TP-N assay is suitable for high-throughput syphilis screening. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  10. Phytochemical screening, total phenolic contents and biological evaluation of aerial parts of nepeta praetervisa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fareed, G.; Afza, N.; Mali, A.; Fareed, N.; Lateef, M.; Iqbal, L.; Mughal, U.R

    2013-01-01

    This study was designed to explore the phytochemical screening, total phenolic contents, radical scavenging potential and urease inhibitory activities in various fractions of the aerial parts of Nepeta praetervisa. Sub-fractions (n-hexane, chloroform, ethyl acetate, n-butanol, and aqueous) were prepared from the crude methanolic extract using partition chromatography. Phytochemical tests were performed and revealed the presence of various classes of secondary metabolites in various sub-fractions (Table-1). Total phenolic contents of all the fractions were determined using Folin-Ciocalteu (FC) reagent and the ethyl acetate sub-fraction was found to possess the highest level of phenolic contents (627.25 mg gallic acid equivalent (GAE)/g) as compared to the other fractions. The radical scavenging activity was determined at various concentrations ranging from 2.5 - 0.15 micro g /10 mu L by 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl radical (DPPH) method. At the lowest concentration level, the ethyl acetate sub-fraction showed maximum level of antioxidant activity (78%) compared to BHA used as standard. The decreasing order of activity was ethyl acetate>chloroform>aqueous>n-butanol>methanol>n-hexane. On the other hand when all these fractions were screened for urease inhibition activity using indophenols method, the ethyl acetate sub-fraction showed significant urease inhibitory activity (68 %) compared with the standard thiourea at the concentration of 50 mu g /10 mu L. The decreasing order of activity of various sub-fractions was ethyl acetate>chloroform>hexane>aqueous, while n-butanol sub- fraction was inactive. (author)

  11. Live demonstration: Screen printed, microwave based level sensor for automated drug delivery

    KAUST Repository

    Karimi, Muhammad Akram; Arsalan, Muhammad; Shamim, Atif

    2018-01-01

    Level sensors find numerous applications in many industries to automate the processes involving chemicals. Recently, some commercial ultrasound based level sensors are also being used to automate the drug delivery process [1]. Some of the most

  12. Perspectives on bioanalytical mass spectrometry and automation in drug discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janiszewski, John S; Liston, Theodore E; Cole, Mark J

    2008-11-01

    The use of high speed synthesis technologies has resulted in a steady increase in the number of new chemical entities active in the drug discovery research stream. Large organizations can have thousands of chemical entities in various stages of testing and evaluation across numerous projects on a weekly basis. Qualitative and quantitative measurements made using LC/MS are integrated throughout this process from early stage lead generation through candidate nomination. Nearly all analytical processes and procedures in modern research organizations are automated to some degree. This includes both hardware and software automation. In this review we discuss bioanalytical mass spectrometry and automation as components of the analytical chemistry infrastructure in pharma. Analytical chemists are presented as members of distinct groups with similar skillsets that build automated systems, manage test compounds, assays and reagents, and deliver data to project teams. The ADME-screening process in drug discovery is used as a model to highlight the relationships between analytical tasks in drug discovery. Emerging software and process automation tools are described that can potentially address gaps and link analytical chemistry related tasks. The role of analytical chemists and groups in modern 'industrialized' drug discovery is also discussed.

  13. Automated multi-lesion detection for referable diabetic retinopathy in indigenous health care.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramon Pires

    Full Text Available Diabetic Retinopathy (DR is a complication of diabetes mellitus that affects more than one-quarter of the population with diabetes, and can lead to blindness if not discovered in time. An automated screening enables the identification of patients who need further medical attention. This study aimed to classify retinal images of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples utilizing an automated computer-based multi-lesion eye screening program for diabetic retinopathy. The multi-lesion classifier was trained on 1,014 images from the São Paulo Eye Hospital and tested on retinal images containing no DR-related lesion, single lesions, or multiple types of lesions from the Inala Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health care centre. The automated multi-lesion classifier has the potential to enhance the efficiency of clinical practice delivering diabetic retinopathy screening. Our program does not necessitate image samples for training from any specific ethnic group or population being assessed and is independent of image pre- or post-processing to identify retinal lesions. In this Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population, the program achieved 100% sensitivity and 88.9% specificity in identifying bright lesions, while detection of red lesions achieved a sensitivity of 67% and specificity of 95%. When both bright and red lesions were present, 100% sensitivity with 88.9% specificity was obtained. All results obtained with this automated screening program meet WHO standards for diabetic retinopathy screening.

  14. Wise Crowd Content Assessment and Educational Rubrics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passonneau, Rebecca J.; Poddar, Ananya; Gite, Gaurav; Krivokapic, Alisa; Yang, Qian; Perin, Dolores

    2018-01-01

    Development of reliable rubrics for educational intervention studies that address reading and writing skills is labor-intensive, and could benefit from an automated approach. We compare a main ideas rubric used in a successful writing intervention study to a highly reliable wise-crowd content assessment method developed to evaluate…

  15. Improving the driver-automation interaction: an approach using automation uncertainty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beller, Johannes; Heesen, Matthias; Vollrath, Mark

    2013-12-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate whether communicating automation uncertainty improves the driver-automation interaction. A false system understanding of infallibility may provoke automation misuse and can lead to severe consequences in case of automation failure. The presentation of automation uncertainty may prevent this false system understanding and, as was shown by previous studies, may have numerous benefits. Few studies, however, have clearly shown the potential of communicating uncertainty information in driving. The current study fills this gap. We conducted a driving simulator experiment, varying the presented uncertainty information between participants (no uncertainty information vs. uncertainty information) and the automation reliability (high vs.low) within participants. Participants interacted with a highly automated driving system while engaging in secondary tasks and were required to cooperate with the automation to drive safely. Quantile regressions and multilevel modeling showed that the presentation of uncertainty information increases the time to collision in the case of automation failure. Furthermore, the data indicated improved situation awareness and better knowledge of fallibility for the experimental group. Consequently, the automation with the uncertainty symbol received higher trust ratings and increased acceptance. The presentation of automation uncertaintythrough a symbol improves overall driver-automation cooperation. Most automated systems in driving could benefit from displaying reliability information. This display might improve the acceptance of fallible systems and further enhances driver-automation cooperation.

  16. Digitising of ultrasonic pulse echo devices as a means for automation of ultrasonic testing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rosenberg, R.

    1989-01-01

    A universal multi-purpose test equipment - EPOCH 2002 - with a 12.5 cm picture tube and a digitally generated echo pulse representation with a format of 80x57 mm is introduced. The content of the screen and the equipment adjustment data can be passed on to external units via a video or RS 232 interface. These parameters favour the use of equipment in part-automated test systems, such as, for example, level monitoring with difficult geometries, continuous testing of shrinkage during profile extrusion and testing for cracks around bolts and rivets with a rotor scanner in aircraft construction. (orig./MM) [de

  17. Application of Fragment Ion Information as Further Evidence in Probabilistic Compound Screening Using Bayesian Statistics and Machine Learning: A Leap Toward Automation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woldegebriel, Michael; Zomer, Paul; Mol, Hans G J; Vivó-Truyols, Gabriel

    2016-08-02

    In this work, we introduce an automated, efficient, and elegant model to combine all pieces of evidence (e.g., expected retention times, peak shapes, isotope distributions, fragment-to-parent ratio) obtained from liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS/MS) data for screening purposes. Combining all these pieces of evidence requires a careful assessment of the uncertainties in the analytical system as well as all possible outcomes. To-date, the majority of the existing algorithms are highly dependent on user input parameters. Additionally, the screening process is tackled as a deterministic problem. In this work we present a Bayesian framework to deal with the combination of all these pieces of evidence. Contrary to conventional algorithms, the information is treated in a probabilistic way, and a final probability assessment of the presence/absence of a compound feature is computed. Additionally, all the necessary parameters except the chromatographic band broadening for the method are learned from the data in training and learning phase of the algorithm, avoiding the introduction of a large number of user-defined parameters. The proposed method was validated with a large data set and has shown improved sensitivity and specificity in comparison to a threshold-based commercial software package.

  18. High-throughput screening platform for natural product-based drug discovery against 3 neglected tropical diseases: human African trypanosomiasis, leishmaniasis, and Chagas disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Annang, F; Pérez-Moreno, G; García-Hernández, R; Cordon-Obras, C; Martín, J; Tormo, J R; Rodríguez, L; de Pedro, N; Gómez-Pérez, V; Valente, M; Reyes, F; Genilloud, O; Vicente, F; Castanys, S; Ruiz-Pérez, L M; Navarro, M; Gamarro, F; González-Pacanowska, D

    2015-01-01

    African trypanosomiasis, leishmaniasis, and Chagas disease are 3 neglected tropical diseases for which current therapeutic interventions are inadequate or toxic. There is an urgent need to find new lead compounds against these diseases. Most drug discovery strategies rely on high-throughput screening (HTS) of synthetic chemical libraries using phenotypic and target-based approaches. Combinatorial chemistry libraries contain hundreds of thousands of compounds; however, they lack the structural diversity required to find entirely novel chemotypes. Natural products, in contrast, are a highly underexplored pool of unique chemical diversity that can serve as excellent templates for the synthesis of novel, biologically active molecules. We report here a validated HTS platform for the screening of microbial extracts against the 3 diseases. We have used this platform in a pilot project to screen a subset (5976) of microbial extracts from the MEDINA Natural Products library. Tandem liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry showed that 48 extracts contain potentially new compounds that are currently undergoing de-replication for future isolation and characterization. Known active components included actinomycin D, bafilomycin B1, chromomycin A3, echinomycin, hygrolidin, and nonactins, among others. The report here is, to our knowledge, the first HTS of microbial natural product extracts against the above-mentioned kinetoplastid parasites. © 2014 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  19. Applicability Of A Semi-Automated Clinical Chemistry Analyzer In Determining The Antioxidant Concentrations Of Selected Plants

    OpenAIRE

    Allan L. Hilario; Phylis C. Rio; Geraldine Susan C. Tengco; Danilo M. Menorca

    2017-01-01

    Plants are rich sources of antioxidants that are protective against diseases associated to oxidative stress. There is a need for high throughput screening method that should be useful in determining the antioxidant concentration in plants. Such screening method should significantly simplify and speed up most antioxidant assays. This paper aimed at comparing the applicability of a semi-automated clinical chemistry analyzer Pointe Scientific MI USA with the traditional standard curve method and...

  20. High throughput protein production screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beernink, Peter T [Walnut Creek, CA; Coleman, Matthew A [Oakland, CA; Segelke, Brent W [San Ramon, CA

    2009-09-08

    Methods, compositions, and kits for the cell-free production and analysis of proteins are provided. The invention allows for the production of proteins from prokaryotic sequences or eukaryotic sequences, including human cDNAs using PCR and IVT methods and detecting the proteins through fluorescence or immunoblot techniques. This invention can be used to identify optimized PCR and WT conditions, codon usages and mutations. The methods are readily automated and can be used for high throughput analysis of protein expression levels, interactions, and functional states.

  1. Crowdsourcing and Automated Retinal Image Analysis for Diabetic Retinopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mudie, Lucy I; Wang, Xueyang; Friedman, David S; Brady, Christopher J

    2017-09-23

    As the number of people with diabetic retinopathy (DR) in the USA is expected to increase threefold by 2050, the need to reduce health care costs associated with screening for this treatable disease is ever present. Crowdsourcing and automated retinal image analysis (ARIA) are two areas where new technology has been applied to reduce costs in screening for DR. This paper reviews the current literature surrounding these new technologies. Crowdsourcing has high sensitivity for normal vs abnormal images; however, when multiple categories for severity of DR are added, specificity is reduced. ARIAs have higher sensitivity and specificity, and some commercial ARIA programs are already in use. Deep learning enhanced ARIAs appear to offer even more improvement in ARIA grading accuracy. The utilization of crowdsourcing and ARIAs may be a key to reducing the time and cost burden of processing images from DR screening.

  2. Screening concepts for the isolation of biosurfactant producing microorganisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walter, Vanessa; Syldatk, Christoph; Hausmann, Rudolf

    2010-01-01

    This chapter gives an overview of current methods for the isolation of biosurfactant producing microbes. The common screening methods for biosurfactants are presented. Sampling and isolation of bacteria are the basis for screening of biosurfactant producing microbes. Hydrocarbon-contaminated sites are the most promising for the isolation of biosurfactant producing microbes, but many strains have also been isolated from undisturbed sites. In subsequent steps the isolates have to be characterized in order to identify the strains which are interesting for a further investigation. Several techniques have been developed for identifying biosurfactant producing strains. Most of them are directly based on the surface or interfacial activity of the culture supernatant. Apart from that, some screening methods explore the hydrophobicity of the cell surface. This trait also gives an indication on biosurfactant production. In recent years automation and miniaturization have led to the development of high throughput methods for screening. High throughput screening (HTS) for analyzing large amounts of potential candidates or whole culture collections is reflected in the end. However, no new principals have been introduced by HTS methods.

  3. The Accutension Stetho, an automated auscultatory device to validate automated sphygmomanometer readings in individual patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alpert, Bruce S

    2018-04-06

    The aim of this report is to describe a new device that can validate, by automated auscultation, individual blood pressure (BP) readings taken by automated sphygmomanometers.The Accutension Stetho utilizes a smartphone application in conjunction with a specially designed stethoscope that interfaces directly into the smartphone via the earphone jack. The Korotkoff sounds are recorded by the application and are analyzed by the operator on the screen of the smartphone simultaneously with the images from the sphygmomanometer screen during BP estimation. Current auscultatory validation standards require at least 85 subjects and strict statistical criteria for passage. A device that passes can make no guarantee of accuracy on individual patients. The Accutension Stetho is an inexpensive smartphone/stethoscope kit combination that estimates precise BP values by auscultation to confirm the accuracy of an automated sphygmomanometer's readings on individual patients. This should be of great value for both professional and, in certain circumstances, self-measurement BP. Patients will avoid both unnecessary treatment and errors of underestimation of BP, in which the patient requires therapy. The Stetho's software has been validated in an independent ANSI/AAMI/ISO standard study. The Stetho has been shown to perform without difficulty in multiple deflation-based devices by many manufacturers.

  4. Automated measurement of office, home and ambulatory blood pressure in atrial fibrillation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kollias, Anastasios; Stergiou, George S

    2014-01-01

    1. Hypertension and atrial fibrillation (AF) often coexist and are strong risk factors for stroke. Current guidelines for blood pressure (BP) measurement in AF recommend repeated measurements using the auscultatory method, whereas the accuracy of the automated devices is regarded as questionable. This review presents the current evidence on the feasibility and accuracy of automated BP measurement in the presence of AF and the potential for automated detection of undiagnosed AF during such measurements. 2. Studies evaluating the use of automated BP monitors in AF are limited and have significant heterogeneity in methodology and protocols. Overall, the oscillometric method is feasible for static (office or home) and ambulatory use and appears to be more accurate for systolic than diastolic BP measurement. 3. Given that systolic hypertension is particularly common and important in the elderly, the automated BP measurement method may be acceptable for self-home and ambulatory monitoring, but not for professional office or clinic measurement. 4. An embedded algorithm for the detection of asymptomatic AF during routine automated BP measurement with high diagnostic accuracy has been developed and appears to be a useful screening tool for elderly hypertensives. © 2013 Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.

  5. Automated measurement of cell motility and proliferation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Goff Julie

    2005-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Time-lapse microscopic imaging provides a powerful approach for following changes in cell phenotype over time. Visible responses of whole cells can yield insight into functional changes that underlie physiological processes in health and disease. For example, features of cell motility accompany molecular changes that are central to the immune response, to carcinogenesis and metastasis, to wound healing and tissue regeneration, and to the myriad developmental processes that generate an organism. Previously reported image processing methods for motility analysis required custom viewing devices and manual interactions that may introduce bias, that slow throughput, and that constrain the scope of experiments in terms of the number of treatment variables, time period of observation, replication and statistical options. Here we describe a fully automated system in which images are acquired 24/7 from 384 well plates and are automatically processed to yield high-content motility and morphological data. Results We have applied this technology to study the effects of different extracellular matrix compounds on human osteoblast-like cell lines to explore functional changes that may underlie processes involved in bone formation and maintenance. We show dose-response and kinetic data for induction of increased motility by laminin and collagen type I without significant effects on growth rate. Differential motility response was evident within 4 hours of plating cells; long-term responses differed depending upon cell type and surface coating. Average velocities were increased approximately 0.1 um/min by ten-fold increases in laminin coating concentration in some cases. Comparison with manual tracking demonstrated the accuracy of the automated method and highlighted the comparative imprecision of human tracking for analysis of cell motility data. Quality statistics are reported that associate with stage noise, interference by non

  6. AUTOMATION OF GLASS TEMPERING FURNACE BY USING PLC

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdullah BÜYÜKYILDIZ

    2007-02-01

    Full Text Available In this study, a furnace which is used for observation of environments under high temperature, and also used for manufacturing of glasses which are resisted to high temperature has been designed and implemented. Automation of this system has been done by using PLC. Operating parameters of furnace such as materials entering, the furnace, the local temperature control of furnace, cooling control and materials outing have been sensed with Hall Effect Sensor. Furthermore, the observation of parameters of furnace on screen has been provided with SCADA software. Obtained products have been shown the system works successfully.

  7. Uncertainty and Motivation to Seek Information from Pharmacy Automated Communications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bones, Michelle; Nunlee, Martin

    2018-05-28

    Pharmacy personnel often answer telephones to respond to pharmacy customers (subjects) who received messages from automated systems. This research examines the communication process in terms of how users interact and engage with pharmacies after receiving automated messages. No study has directly addressed automated telephone calls and subjects' interactions. The purpose of this study is to test the interpersonal communication (IC) process of uncertainty in subjects in receipt of automated telephone calls ATCs from pharmacies. Subjects completed a survey of validated scales for Satisfaction (S); Relevance (R); Quality (Q); Need for Cognitive Closure (NFC). Relationships between S, R, Q, NFC, and subject preference to ATCs were analyzed to determine whether subjects contacting pharmacies display information seeking behavior. Results demonstrated that seeking information occurs if subjects: are dissatisfied with the content of the ATC; perceive that the Q of ATC is high and like receiving the ATC, or have a high NFC and do not like receiving ATCs. Other interactions presented complexities amongst uncertainty and tolerance of NFC within the IC process.

  8. Ethics, finance, and automation: a preliminary survey of problems in high frequency trading.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Michael; Kumiega, Andrew; Van Vliet, Ben

    2013-09-01

    All of finance is now automated, most notably high frequency trading. This paper examines the ethical implications of this fact. As automation is an interdisciplinary endeavor, we argue that the interfaces between the respective disciplines can lead to conflicting ethical perspectives; we also argue that existing disciplinary standards do not pay enough attention to the ethical problems automation generates. Conflicting perspectives undermine the protection those who rely on trading should have. Ethics in finance can be expanded to include organizational and industry-wide responsibilities to external market participants and society. As a starting point, quality management techniques can provide a foundation for a new cross-disciplinary ethical standard in the age of automation.

  9. Validity and cost-effectiveness of methods for screening of primary open angle glaucoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fröschl, Barbara

    2007-02-01

    Full Text Available Health political background: About 950,000 people are affected by glaucoma in Germany, about 50% of which are undiagnosed. The German Ophthalmological Society and the German Association of Ophthalmologists recommend a screening for glaucoma according to their guidelines. The Federal Joint Committee disapproved a glaucoma-screening program on expense of the compulsory health insurance in 2004. Scientific background: Primary open angle glaucoma is diagnosed by evaluation of the optic disc, the retinal fibre layer and the visual field. The main examinations are ophthalmoscopy, scanning laser polarimetry, confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscopy, retinal thickness analysis and optical coherence tomography. Scotomas are diagnosed by perimetry (standard automated perimetry, short wavelength automated perimetry and frequency doubling perimetry. The intraocular pressure is the most important treatable risk factor and is measured by (contact or non-contact tonometry. Research questions: The aim of this HTA-report is to investigate the diagnostic validity and cost effectiveness of diagnostic techniques or combinations of these methods with respect to the use in a screening setting in Germany. Methods: A systematic literature research was performed in 35 international databases and yielded 2602 articles. Overall 57 publications were included for assessment, according to predefined selection criteria. Results: The 55 medical articles deal mainly with frequency doubling perimetry, confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscopy and scanning laser polarimetry. Few articles cover short wavelength automated perimetry, tonometry and ophalmocopic evaluations by ophthalmologists. The quality of the papers is generally low, as far as the evidence in respect of screening is concerned. No single method exists with both, high sensitivity and high specificity for screening purpose. Data are also not sufficient to recommend combinations of methods. Only two economic models on cost

  10. High-throughput untargeted screening of veterinary drug residues and metabolites in tilapia using high resolution orbitrap mass spectrometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Wei; Chu, Xiaogang; Chang, James; Wang, Perry G; Chen, Ying; Zhang, Feng

    2017-03-08

    An analytical method was developed and validated for simultaneous analysis of one hundred and thirty-seven veterinary drug residues and metabolites from sixteen different classes in tilapia utilizing an improved fully non-targeted way of data acquisition with fragmentation. The automated on-line extraction procedure was achieved in a simple disposable pipet extraction. Ultrahigh-performance liquid chromatography and electrospray ionization quadrupole Orbitrap high-resolution mass spectrometry (UHPLC Q-Orbitrap) was used for the separation and detection of all the analytes. The methodology was validated by taking into consideration the guidelines specified in European SANCO/12571/2013 Guideline 2013 and Commission Decision 2002/657/EC. The extraction recoveries ranged from 81% to 111%. The limits of decision ranged from 0.01 to 2.73 μg kg -1 and the detection capabilities ranged from 0.01 to 4.73 μg kg -1 . The one hundred and thirty-seven compounds behave dynamic 0.1-500 μg kg -1 , with correlation coefficient >0.99. The fully non-targeted data acquisition way improves both sensitivity and selectivity for the fragments, which is beneficial for screening performance and identification capability. This validated method has been successfully applied on screening of veterinary drug residues and metabolites in muscle of tilapia, an important and intensively produced fish in aquaculture. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Immunochemical faecal occult blood test for colorectal cancer screening: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Syful Azlie, M F; Hassan, M R; Junainah, S; Rugayah, B

    2015-02-01

    A systematic review on the effectiveness and costeffectiveness of Immunochemical faecal occult IFOBT for CRC screening was carried out. A total of 450 relevant titles were identified, 41 abstracts were screened and 18 articles were included in the results. There was fair level of retrievable evidence to suggest that the sensitivity and specificity of IFOBT varies with the cut-off point of haemoglobin, whereas the diagnostic accuracy performance was influenced by high temperature and haemoglobin stability. A screening programme using IFOBT can be effective for prevention of advanced CRC and reduced mortality. There was also evidence to suggest that IFOBT is cost-effective in comparison with no screening, whereby a two-day faecal collection method was found to be costeffective as a means of screening for CRC. Based on the review, quantitative IFOBT method can be used in Malaysia as a screening test for CRC. The use of fully automated IFOBT assay would be highly desirable.

  12. Automated alignment of optical components for high-power diode lasers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brecher, C.; Pyschny, N.; Haag, S.; Guerrero Lule, V.

    2012-03-01

    Despite major progress in developing brilliant laser sources a huge potential for cost reductions can be found in simpler setups and automated assembly processes, especially for large volume applications. In this presentation, a concept for flexible automation in optics assembly is presented which is based on standard micro assembly systems with relatively large workspace and modular micromanipulators to enhance the system with additional degrees of freedom and a very high motion resolution. The core component is a compact flexure-based micromanipulator especially designed for the alignment of micro optical components which will be described in detail. The manipulator has been applied in different scenarios to develop and investigate automated alignment processes. This paper focuses on the automated alignment of fast axis collimation (FAC) lenses which is a crucial step during the production of diode lasers. The handling and positioning system, the measuring arrangement for process feedback during active alignment as well as the alignment strategy will be described. The fine alignment of the FAC lens is performed with the micromanipulator under concurrent analysis of the far and the near field intensity distribution. An optimization of the image processing chains for the alignment of a FAC in front of a diode bar led to cycle times of less than 30 seconds. An outlook on other applications and future work regarding the development of automated assembly processes as well as new ideas for flexible assembly systems with desktop robots will close the talk.

  13. Phytochemical screening, total phenolic, total flavonoids contents and antioxidant activity of cinchona ledgeriana leaves ethanol extract

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundowo, Andini; Artanti, Nina; Hanafi, M.; Minarti, Primahana, Gian

    2017-11-01

    C ledgeriana is a medicinal plant that contains alkaloids, especially on the barks for commercial production of quinine as antimalarial. The main alkaloids in this plant are cinchonine, cinchonidine, quinine and quinidine. Besides for antiamalarial this plant is also commonly used to treat whooping cough, influenza and dysentery. Compare to other medicinal plants, nowadays only very few studies were conducted in Cinchona species. Our current study aims to determine the content of phytochemical, total phenol and total flavonoids from C. ledgeriana leaves 70% ethanol extract. The extraction was performed by maceration method using 70% ethanol solvent and then fractionated into hexane, ethylacetate and butanol. Phytochemical screening was performed to determine the content of alkaloids, flavonoids, terpenoids, tannins and saponins. Total phenol and flavonoid contents of the extract were determined by Folin-Ciocalteu and alumunium chloride colorimetric methods using gallic acid and quercetin as standards. The antioxidant activity was determined by using 2, 2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical scavenging activity. The results of phytochemical screening showed that the 70% ethanol extract of C. ledgeriana leaves contained alkaloids, flavonoids, terpenoids, tannins and saponins. The total phenol and total flavonoids analysis showed that ethyl acetate fraction had the highest total phenol (40.23%) and total flavonoids (65.34%).

  14. Quantitative high-throughput screen identifies inhibitors of the Schistosoma mansoni redox cascade.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anton Simeonov

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Schistosomiasis is a tropical disease associated with high morbidity and mortality, currently affecting over 200 million people worldwide. Praziquantel is the only drug used to treat the disease, and with its increased use the probability of developing drug resistance has grown significantly. The Schistosoma parasites can survive for up to decades in the human host due in part to a unique set of antioxidant enzymes that continuously degrade the reactive oxygen species produced by the host's innate immune response. Two principal components of this defense system have been recently identified in S. mansoni as thioredoxin/glutathione reductase (TGR and peroxiredoxin (Prx and as such these enzymes present attractive new targets for anti-schistosomiasis drug development. Inhibition of TGR/Prx activity was screened in a dual-enzyme format with reducing equivalents being transferred from NADPH to glutathione via a TGR-catalyzed reaction and then to hydrogen peroxide via a Prx-catalyzed step. A fully automated quantitative high-throughput (qHTS experiment was performed against a collection of 71,028 compounds tested as 7- to 15-point concentration series at 5 microL reaction volume in 1536-well plate format. In order to generate a robust data set and to minimize the effect of compound autofluorescence, apparent reaction rates derived from a kinetic read were utilized instead of end-point measurements. Actives identified from the screen, along with previously untested analogues, were subjected to confirmatory experiments using the screening assay and subsequently against the individual targets in secondary assays. Several novel active series were identified which inhibited TGR at a range of potencies, with IC(50s ranging from micromolar to the assay response limit ( approximately 25 nM. This is, to our knowledge, the first report of a large-scale HTS to identify lead compounds for a helminthic disease, and provides a paradigm that can be used to jump

  15. Spectrophotometric Enzyme Assays for High-Throughput Screening

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Louis Reymond

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper reviews high-throughput screening enzyme assays developed in our laboratory over the last ten years. These enzyme assays were initially developed for the purpose of discovering catalytic antibodies by screening cell culture supernatants, but have proved generally useful for testing enzyme activities. Examples include TLC-based screening using acridone-labeled substrates, fluorogenic assays based on the β-elimination of umbelliferone or nitrophenol, and indirect assays such as the back-titration method with adrenaline and the copper-calcein fluorescence assay for aminoacids.

  16. A High-Throughput Mass Spectrometry Assay Coupled with Redox Activity Testing Reduces Artifacts and False Positives in Lysine Demethylase Screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wigle, Tim J; Swinger, Kerren K; Campbell, John E; Scholle, Michael D; Sherrill, John; Admirand, Elizabeth A; Boriack-Sjodin, P Ann; Kuntz, Kevin W; Chesworth, Richard; Moyer, Mikel P; Scott, Margaret Porter; Copeland, Robert A

    2015-07-01

    Demethylation of histones by lysine demethylases (KDMs) plays a critical role in controlling gene transcription. Aberrant demethylation may play a causal role in diseases such as cancer. Despite the biological significance of these enzymes, there are limited assay technologies for study of KDMs and few quality chemical probes available to interrogate their biology. In this report, we demonstrate the utility of self-assembled monolayer desorption/ionization (SAMDI) mass spectrometry for the investigation of quantitative KDM enzyme kinetics and for high-throughput screening for KDM inhibitors. SAMDI can be performed in 384-well format and rapidly allows reaction components to be purified prior to injection into a mass spectrometer, without a throughput-limiting liquid chromatography step. We developed sensitive and robust assays for KDM1A (LSD1, AOF2) and KDM4C (JMJD2C, GASC1) and screened 13,824 compounds against each enzyme. Hits were rapidly triaged using a redox assay to identify compounds that interfered with the catalytic oxidation chemistry used by the KDMs for the demethylation reaction. We find that overall this high-throughput mass spectrometry platform coupled with the elimination of redox active compounds leads to a hit rate that is manageable for follow-up work. © 2015 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  17. Screening of 33 Medicinal Plants for the Microelements Content

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ducu Sandu Ştef

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available The microelements content of 33 medicinal plants was analyzed. The analysed microelements were: Iron, copper, zinc, manganese, cobalt, chromium, nickel, cadmium and lead. Mineral contents were determinate by flame atomic absorption spectrometry (F-AAS with high resolution continuum source ContrAA 300 spectrometer. The contents in microelements for analysed samples were in range: 18.1 ppm (Symphytum officinale - 1.4 ppm (Rhamnus frangula, for Copper; 26,2 ppm (Valeriana officinalis – 4,3 ppm (Rhamnus frangula, for Zinc; 214 ppm. (Violae tricoloris herba - 18 ppm (Equisetum arvense, for Manganese; 826 ppm (Calendula officinalis - 23 ppm (Rhamnus frangula, for Iron. The microelements contents (Cu, Zn, Mn, Fe, Co, Cr, Ni, Cd and Pb have grouped the analyzed medicinal plants in two main clusters. First main cluster was formed by other two groups.

  18. High-content screening of Aspergillus niger with both increased production and high secretion rate of glucose oxidase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Xudong; Sun, Jingchun; Chu, Ju

    2018-01-01

    To develop a rapid, dual-parameter, plate-based screening process to improve production and secretion rate of glucose oxidase simultaneously in Aspergillus niger. A morphology engineering based on CaCO 3 was implemented, where the yield of GOD by A. niger was increased by up to 50%. Analysis of extracellular GOD activity was achieved in 96-well plates. There was a close negative correlation between the total GOD activity and its residual glucose of the fermentation broth. Based on this, a rapid, plate-based, qualitative analysis method of the total GOD activity was developed. Compared with the conventional analysis method using o-dianisidine, a correlation coefficient of -0.92 by statistical analysis was obtained. Using this dual-parameter screening method, we acquired a strain with GOD activity of 3126 U l -1 , which was 146% higher than the original strain. Its secretion rate of GOD was 83, 32% higher than the original strain.

  19. Proposal for automated transformations on single-photon multipath qudits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baldijão, R. D.; Borges, G. F.; Marques, B.; Solís-Prosser, M. A.; Neves, L.; Pádua, S.

    2017-09-01

    We propose a method for implementing automated state transformations on single-photon multipath qudits encoded in a one-dimensional transverse spatial domain. It relies on transferring the encoding from this domain to the orthogonal one by applying a spatial phase modulation with diffraction gratings, merging all the initial propagation paths by using a stable interferometric network, and filtering out the unwanted diffraction orders. The automation feature is attained by utilizing a programmable phase-only spatial light modulator (SLM) where properly designed diffraction gratings displayed on its screen will implement the desired transformations, including, among others, projections, permutations, and random operations. We discuss the losses in the process which is, in general, inherently nonunitary. Some examples of transformations are presented and, considering a realistic scenario, we analyze how they will be affected by the pixelated structure of the SLM screen. The method proposed here enables one to implement much more general transformations on multipath qudits than is possible with a SLM alone operating in the diagonal basis of which-path states. Therefore, it will extend the range of applicability for this encoding in high-dimensional quantum information and computing protocols as well as fundamental studies in quantum theory.

  20. Automated packaging platform for low-cost high-performance optical components manufacturing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ku, Robert T.

    2004-05-01

    Delivering high performance integrated optical components at low cost is critical to the continuing recovery and growth of the optical communications industry. In today's market, network equipment vendors need to provide their customers with new solutions that reduce operating expenses and enable new revenue generating IP services. They must depend on the availability of highly integrated optical modules exhibiting high performance, small package size, low power consumption, and most importantly, low cost. The cost of typical optical system hardware is dominated by linecards that are in turn cost-dominated by transmitters and receivers or transceivers and transponders. Cost effective packaging of optical components in these small size modules is becoming the biggest challenge to be addressed. For many traditional component suppliers in our industry, the combination of small size, high performance, and low cost appears to be in conflict and not feasible with conventional product design concepts and labor intensive manual assembly and test. With the advent of photonic integration, there are a variety of materials, optics, substrates, active/passive devices, and mechanical/RF piece parts to manage in manufacturing to achieve high performance at low cost. The use of automation has been demonstrated to surpass manual operation in cost (even with very low labor cost) as well as product uniformity and quality. In this paper, we will discuss the value of using an automated packaging platform.for the assembly and test of high performance active components, such as 2.5Gb/s and 10 Gb/s sources and receivers. Low cost, high performance manufacturing can best be achieved by leveraging a flexible packaging platform to address a multitude of laser and detector devices, integration of electronics and handle various package bodies and fiber configurations. This paper describes the operation and results of working robotic assemblers in the manufacture of a Laser Optical Subassembly

  1. Automated image-based assay for evaluation of HIV neutralization and cell-to-cell fusion inhibition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheik-Khalil, Enas; Bray, Mark-Anthony; Özkaya Şahin, Gülsen; Scarlatti, Gabriella; Jansson, Marianne; Carpenter, Anne E; Fenyö, Eva Maria

    2014-08-30

    Standardized techniques to detect HIV-neutralizing antibody responses are of great importance in the search for an HIV vaccine. Here, we present a high-throughput, high-content automated plaque reduction (APR) assay based on automated microscopy and image analysis that allows evaluation of neutralization and inhibition of cell-cell fusion within the same assay. Neutralization of virus particles is measured as a reduction in the number of fluorescent plaques, and inhibition of cell-cell fusion as a reduction in plaque area. We found neutralization strength to be a significant factor in the ability of virus to form syncytia. Further, we introduce the inhibitory concentration of plaque area reduction (ICpar) as an additional measure of antiviral activity, i.e. fusion inhibition. We present an automated image based high-throughput, high-content HIV plaque reduction assay. This allows, for the first time, simultaneous evaluation of neutralization and inhibition of cell-cell fusion within the same assay, by quantifying the reduction in number of plaques and mean plaque area, respectively. Inhibition of cell-to-cell fusion requires higher quantities of inhibitory reagent than inhibition of virus neutralization.

  2. Integration of an In Situ MALDI-Based High-Throughput Screening Process: A Case Study with Receptor Tyrosine Kinase c-MET.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beeman, Katrin; Baumgärtner, Jens; Laubenheimer, Manuel; Hergesell, Karlheinz; Hoffmann, Martin; Pehl, Ulrich; Fischer, Frank; Pieck, Jan-Carsten

    2017-12-01

    Mass spectrometry (MS) is known for its label-free detection of substrates and products from a variety of enzyme reactions. Recent hardware improvements have increased interest in the use of matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) MS for high-throughput drug discovery. Despite interest in this technology, several challenges remain and must be overcome before MALDI-MS can be integrated as an automated "in-line reader" for high-throughput drug discovery. Two such hurdles include in situ sample processing and deposition, as well as integration of MALDI-MS for enzymatic screening assays that usually contain high levels of MS-incompatible components. Here we adapt our c-MET kinase assay to optimize for MALDI-MS compatibility and test its feasibility for compound screening. The pros and cons of the Echo (Labcyte) as a transfer system for in situ MALDI-MS sample preparation are discussed. We demonstrate that this method generates robust data in a 1536-grid format. We use the MALDI-MS to directly measure the ratio of c-MET substrate and phosphorylated product to acquire IC50 curves and demonstrate that the pharmacology is unaffected. The resulting IC50 values correlate well between the common label-based capillary electrophoresis and the label-free MALDI-MS detection method. We predict that label-free MALDI-MS-based high-throughput screening will become increasingly important and more widely used for drug discovery.

  3. Internet-Based Cervical Cancer Screening Program

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Wilbur, David C; Crothers, Barbara A; Eichhorn, John H; Ro, Min S; Gelfand, Jeffrey A

    2008-01-01

    This project explores the combination of computerized automated primary screening of cervical cytology specimens in remote sites with interpretation of device-selected images transmitted via the Internet...

  4. Internet-Based Cervical Cytology Screening System

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Wilbur, David C; Crothers, Barbara A; Eichhorn, John H; Ro, Min S; Gelfand, Jeffrey A

    2007-01-01

    This project explores the combination of computerized automated primary screening of cervical cytology specimens in remote sites with interpretation of device-selected images transmitted via the Internet...

  5. Internet-Based Cervical Cytology Screening Program

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Wilbur, David C; Crothers, Barbara A; Eichhorn, John H; Ro, Min S; Gelfand, Jeffrey A

    2006-01-01

    This project explores the combination of computerized automated primary screening of cervical cytology specimens in remote sites with interpretation of device-selected images transmitted via the Internet...

  6. Design automation of switching mode high voltage power supply for nuclear instruments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    El-araby, S.M.S.

    1999-01-01

    This paper presents an automation procedure for the design of switching mode high voltage power supplies, using Pc programming facility. The procedure permits the selection of a ready made or designed ferrite transformer. This selection could be achieved according to the designer desire; as the program includes complete information about ready made ferrite transformer through complete database. The procedure is based on suggested template circuit. Micro-Cap IV simulation package is used to verify the desired high voltage power supply design. Simulation results agree quite well with suggested procedure's results. Design aspects and development needed to increase automation capabilities are also discussed

  7. Optimizing transformations for automated, high throughput analysis of flow cytometry data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finak, Greg; Perez, Juan-Manuel; Weng, Andrew; Gottardo, Raphael

    2010-11-04

    In a high throughput setting, effective flow cytometry data analysis depends heavily on proper data preprocessing. While usual preprocessing steps of quality assessment, outlier removal, normalization, and gating have received considerable scrutiny from the community, the influence of data transformation on the output of high throughput analysis has been largely overlooked. Flow cytometry measurements can vary over several orders of magnitude, cell populations can have variances that depend on their mean fluorescence intensities, and may exhibit heavily-skewed distributions. Consequently, the choice of data transformation can influence the output of automated gating. An appropriate data transformation aids in data visualization and gating of cell populations across the range of data. Experience shows that the choice of transformation is data specific. Our goal here is to compare the performance of different transformations applied to flow cytometry data in the context of automated gating in a high throughput, fully automated setting. We examine the most common transformations used in flow cytometry, including the generalized hyperbolic arcsine, biexponential, linlog, and generalized Box-Cox, all within the BioConductor flowCore framework that is widely used in high throughput, automated flow cytometry data analysis. All of these transformations have adjustable parameters whose effects upon the data are non-intuitive for most users. By making some modelling assumptions about the transformed data, we develop maximum likelihood criteria to optimize parameter choice for these different transformations. We compare the performance of parameter-optimized and default-parameter (in flowCore) data transformations on real and simulated data by measuring the variation in the locations of cell populations across samples, discovered via automated gating in both the scatter and fluorescence channels. We find that parameter-optimized transformations improve visualization, reduce

  8. Optimizing transformations for automated, high throughput analysis of flow cytometry data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weng Andrew

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In a high throughput setting, effective flow cytometry data analysis depends heavily on proper data preprocessing. While usual preprocessing steps of quality assessment, outlier removal, normalization, and gating have received considerable scrutiny from the community, the influence of data transformation on the output of high throughput analysis has been largely overlooked. Flow cytometry measurements can vary over several orders of magnitude, cell populations can have variances that depend on their mean fluorescence intensities, and may exhibit heavily-skewed distributions. Consequently, the choice of data transformation can influence the output of automated gating. An appropriate data transformation aids in data visualization and gating of cell populations across the range of data. Experience shows that the choice of transformation is data specific. Our goal here is to compare the performance of different transformations applied to flow cytometry data in the context of automated gating in a high throughput, fully automated setting. We examine the most common transformations used in flow cytometry, including the generalized hyperbolic arcsine, biexponential, linlog, and generalized Box-Cox, all within the BioConductor flowCore framework that is widely used in high throughput, automated flow cytometry data analysis. All of these transformations have adjustable parameters whose effects upon the data are non-intuitive for most users. By making some modelling assumptions about the transformed data, we develop maximum likelihood criteria to optimize parameter choice for these different transformations. Results We compare the performance of parameter-optimized and default-parameter (in flowCore data transformations on real and simulated data by measuring the variation in the locations of cell populations across samples, discovered via automated gating in both the scatter and fluorescence channels. We find that parameter

  9. Automated acquisition and analysis of small angle X-ray scattering data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Franke, Daniel; Kikhney, Alexey G.; Svergun, Dmitri I.

    2012-01-01

    Small Angle X-ray Scattering (SAXS) is a powerful tool in the study of biological macromolecules providing information about the shape, conformation, assembly and folding states in solution. Recent advances in robotic fluid handling make it possible to perform automated high throughput experiments including fast screening of solution conditions, measurement of structural responses to ligand binding, changes in temperature or chemical modifications. Here, an approach to full automation of SAXS data acquisition and data analysis is presented, which advances automated experiments to the level of a routine tool suitable for large scale structural studies. The approach links automated sample loading, primary data reduction and further processing, facilitating queuing of multiple samples for subsequent measurement and analysis and providing means of remote experiment control. The system was implemented and comprehensively tested in user operation at the BioSAXS beamlines X33 and P12 of EMBL at the DORIS and PETRA storage rings of DESY, Hamburg, respectively, but is also easily applicable to other SAXS stations due to its modular design.

  10. Readability, Suitability and Health Content Assessment of Cancer Screening Announcements in Municipal Newspapers in Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okuhara, Tsuyoshi; Ishikawa, Hirono; Okada, Hiroko; Kiuchi, Takahiro

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to assess the readability, suitability, and health content of cancer screening information in municipal newspapers in Japan. Suitability Assessment of Materials (SAM) and the framework of Health Belief Model (HBM) were used for assessment of municipal newspapers that were published in central Tokyo (23 wards) from January to December 2013. The mean domain SAM scores of content, literacy demand, and layout/typography were considered superior. The SAM scores of interaction with readers, an indication of the models of desirable actions, and elaboration to enhance readers' self-efficacy were low. According to the HBM coding, messages of medical/clinical severity, of social severity, of social benefits, and of barriers of fear were scarce. The articles were generally well written and suitable. However, learning stimulation/motivation was scarce and the HBM constructs were not fully addressed. Articles can be improved to motivate readers to obtain cancer screening by increasing interaction with readers, introducing models of desirable actions and devices to raise readers' self-efficacy, and providing statements of perceived barriers of fear for pain and time constraints, perceived severity, and social benefits and losses.

  11. High-Throughput Screening as a Supplemental Tool for the Development of Advanced Emission Control Catalysts: Methodological Approaches and Data Processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Sundermann

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available A high-throughput (HT screening platform developed at hte with the application focus on automotive catalysis is described. hte HT units are configured for performing steady-state testing, as well as dynamic tests with fast feed switches, such as lean/rich excursions for the evaluation of NOx storage capacity and efficiency of lean NOx traps (LNT, ammonia storage capacity for selective catalytic reduction (SCR, evaluation of oxygen storage capacity (OSC, as well as lambda sweep tests for screening of three-way catalysts (TWC. Even though catalysts are screened on a rather small scale (~100 mg powder, experience showed that dosing rather complex gas mixtures in concentrations close to that found in real exhaust for the given application is mandatory to generate relevant data. The objective of this work is to give additional insight into HT technology. In the industrial research laboratory, HT screening has matured to become a reliable approach for rapid screening of both reaction parameter spaces, as well as material properties relevant for exhaust gas catalyst development. Due to the speed of optimized screening involving 48 parallel reactors, automated handling of primary data is an imported requirement. Software for data reduction, like estimation of light-off temperature, needs to be robust and handle results for diverse sample libraries in an unattended fashion. In combination with the statistical design of experiment and multivariate data analysis, HT testing has become a valuable enhancement to automotive catalyst development.

  12. Automated Breast Ultrasonography (ABUS) in the Screening and Diagnostic Setting: Indications and Practical Use.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rella, Rossella; Belli, Paolo; Giuliani, Michela; Bufi, Enida; Carlino, Giorgio; Rinaldi, Pierluigi; Manfredi, Riccardo

    2018-03-16

    Automated breast ultrasonography (ABUS) is a new imaging technology for automatic breast scanning through ultrasound. It was first developed to overcome the limitation of operator dependency and lack of standardization and reproducibility of handheld ultrasound. ABUS provides a three-dimensional representation of breast tissue and allows images reformatting in three planes, and the generated coronal plane has been suggested to improve diagnostic accuracy. This technique has been first used in the screening setting to improve breast cancer detection, especially in mammographically dense breasts. In recent years, numerous studies also evaluated its use in the diagnostic setting: they showed its suitability for breast cancer staging, evaluation of tumor response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy, and second-look ultrasound after magnetic resonance imaging. The purpose of this article is to provide a comprehensive review of the current body of literature about the clinical performance of ABUS, summarize available evidence, and identify gaps in knowledge for future research. Copyright © 2018 The Association of University Radiologists. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Insect-derived cecropins display activity against Acinetobacter baumannii in a whole-animal high-throughput Caenorhabditis elegans model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayamani, Elamparithi; Rajamuthiah, Rajmohan; Larkins-Ford, Jonah; Fuchs, Beth Burgwyn; Conery, Annie L; Vilcinskas, Andreas; Ausubel, Frederick M; Mylonakis, Eleftherios

    2015-03-01

    The rise of multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii and a concomitant decrease in antibiotic treatment options warrants a search for new classes of antibacterial agents. We have found that A. baumannii is pathogenic and lethal to the model host organism Caenorhabditis elegans and have exploited this phenomenon to develop an automated, high-throughput, high-content screening assay in liquid culture that can be used to identify novel antibiotics effective against A. baumannii. The screening assay involves coincubating C. elegans with A. baumannii in 384-well plates containing potential antibacterial compounds. At the end of the incubation period, worms are stained with a dye that stains only dead animals, and images are acquired using automated microscopy and then analyzed using an automated image analysis program. This robust assay yields a Z' factor consistently greater than 0.7. In a pilot experiment to test the efficacy of the assay, we screened a small custom library of synthetic antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) that were synthesized using publicly available sequence data and/or transcriptomic data from immune-challenged insects. We identified cecropin A and 14 other cecropin or cecropin-like peptides that were able to enhance C. elegans survival in the presence of A. baumannii. Interestingly, one particular hit, BR003-cecropin A, a cationic peptide synthesized by the mosquito Aedes aegypti, showed antibiotic activity against a panel of Gram-negative bacteria and exhibited a low MIC (5 μg/ml) against A. baumannii. BR003-cecropin A causes membrane permeability in A. baumannii, which could be the underlying mechanism of its lethality. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  14. Automated high-performance cIMT measurement techniques using patented AtheroEdge™: a screening and home monitoring system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molinari, Filippo; Meiburger, Kristen M; Suri, Jasjit

    2011-01-01

    The evaluation of the carotid artery wall is fundamental for the assessment of cardiovascular risk. This paper presents the general architecture of an automatic strategy, which segments the lumen-intima and media-adventitia borders, classified under a class of Patented AtheroEdge™ systems (Global Biomedical Technologies, Inc, CA, USA). Guidelines to produce accurate and repeatable measurements of the intima-media thickness are provided and the problem of the different distance metrics one can adopt is confronted. We compared the results of a completely automatic algorithm that we developed with those of a semi-automatic algorithm, and showed final segmentation results for both techniques. The overall rationale is to provide user-independent high-performance techniques suitable for screening and remote monitoring.

  15. Driving Performance After Self-Regulated Control Transitions in Highly Automated Vehicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eriksson, Alexander; Stanton, Neville A

    2017-12-01

    This study aims to explore whether driver-paced, noncritical transitions of control may counteract some of the aftereffects observed in the contemporary literature, resulting in higher levels of vehicle control. Research into control transitions in highly automated driving has focused on urgent scenarios where drivers are given a relatively short time span to respond to a request to resume manual control, resulting in seemingly scrambled control when manual control is resumed. Twenty-six drivers drove two scenarios with an automated driving feature activated. Drivers were asked to read a newspaper or monitor the system and relinquish or resume control from the automation when prompted by vehicle systems. Driving performance in terms of lane positioning and steering behavior was assessed for 20 seconds post resuming control to capture the resulting level of control. It was found that lane positioning was virtually unaffected for the duration of the 20-second time span in both automated conditions compared to the manual baseline when drivers resumed manual control; however, significant increases in the standard deviation of steering input were found for both automated conditions compared to baseline. No significant differences were found between the two automated conditions. The results indicate that when drivers self-paced the transfer back to manual control they exhibit less of the detrimental effects observed in system-paced conditions. It was shown that self-paced transitions could reduce the risk of accidents near the edge of the operational design domain. Vehicle manufacturers must consider these benefits when designing contemporary systems.

  16. Tools for automating the imaging of zebrafish larvae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pulak, Rock

    2016-03-01

    The VAST BioImager system is a set of tools developed for zebrafish researchers who require the collection of images from a large number of 2-7 dpf zebrafish larvae. The VAST BioImager automates larval handling, positioning and orientation tasks. Color images at about 10 μm resolution are collected from the on-board camera of the system. If images of greater resolution and detail are required, this system is mounted on an upright microscope, such as a confocal or fluorescence microscope, to utilize their capabilities. The system loads a larvae, positions it in view of the camera, determines orientation using pattern recognition analysis, and then more precisely positions to user-defined orientation for optimal imaging of any desired tissue or organ system. Multiple images of the same larva can be collected. The specific part of each larva and the desired orientation and position is identified by the researcher and an experiment defining the settings and a series of steps can be saved and repeated for imaging of subsequent larvae. The system captures images, then ejects and loads another larva from either a bulk reservoir, a well of a 96 well plate using the LP Sampler, or individually targeted larvae from a Petri dish or other container using the VAST Pipettor. Alternative manual protocols for handling larvae for image collection are tedious and time consuming. The VAST BioImager automates these steps to allow for greater throughput of assays and screens requiring high-content image collection of zebrafish larvae such as might be used in drug discovery and toxicology studies. Copyright © 2015 The Author. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Recent advances in quantitative high throughput and high content data analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moutsatsos, Ioannis K; Parker, Christian N

    2016-01-01

    High throughput screening has become a basic technique with which to explore biological systems. Advances in technology, including increased screening capacity, as well as methods that generate multiparametric readouts, are driving the need for improvements in the analysis of data sets derived from such screens. This article covers the recent advances in the analysis of high throughput screening data sets from arrayed samples, as well as the recent advances in the analysis of cell-by-cell data sets derived from image or flow cytometry application. Screening multiple genomic reagents targeting any given gene creates additional challenges and so methods that prioritize individual gene targets have been developed. The article reviews many of the open source data analysis methods that are now available and which are helping to define a consensus on the best practices to use when analyzing screening data. As data sets become larger, and more complex, the need for easily accessible data analysis tools will continue to grow. The presentation of such complex data sets, to facilitate quality control monitoring and interpretation of the results will require the development of novel visualizations. In addition, advanced statistical and machine learning algorithms that can help identify patterns, correlations and the best features in massive data sets will be required. The ease of use for these tools will be important, as they will need to be used iteratively by laboratory scientists to improve the outcomes of complex analyses.

  18. 1366 Project Automate: Enabling Automation for <$0.10/W High-Efficiency Kerfless Wafers Manufactured in the US

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lorenz, Adam [1366 Technologies, Bedford, MA (United States)

    2017-05-10

    For photovoltaic (PV) manufacturing to thrive in the U.S., there must be an innovative core to the technology. Project Automate builds on 1366’s proprietary Direct Wafer® kerfless wafer technology and aims to unlock the cost and efficiency advantages of thin kerfless wafers. Direct Wafer is an innovative, U.S.-friendly (efficient, low-labor content) manufacturing process that addresses the main cost barrier limiting silicon PV cost-reductions – the 35-year-old grand challenge of manufacturing quality wafers (40% of the cost of modules) without the cost and waste of sawing. This simple, scalable process will allow 1366 to manufacture “drop-in” replacement wafers for the $10 billion silicon PV wafer market at 50% of the cost, 60% of the capital, and 30% of the electricity of conventional casting and sawing manufacturing processes. This SolarMat project developed the Direct Wafer processes’ unique capability to tailor the shape of wafers to simultaneously make thinner AND stronger wafers (with lower silicon usage) that enable high-efficiency cell architectures. By producing wafers with a unique target geometry including a thick border (which determines handling characteristics) and thin interior regions (which control light capture and electron transport and therefore determine efficiency), 1366 can simultaneously improve quality and lower cost (using less silicon).

  19. Automation Interfaces of the Orion GNC Executive Architecture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hart, Jeremy

    2009-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation describes Orion mission's automation Guidance, Navigation and Control (GNC) architecture and interfaces. The contents include: 1) Orion Background; 2) Shuttle/Orion Automation Comparison; 3) Orion Mission Sequencing; 4) Orion Mission Sequencing Display Concept; and 5) Status and Forward Plans.

  20. Screen printing technology applied to silicon solar cell fabrication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thornhill, J. W.; Sipperly, W. E.

    1980-01-01

    The process for producing space qualified solar cells in both the conventional and wraparound configuration using screen printing techniques was investigated. Process modifications were chosen that could be easily automated or mechanized. Work was accomplished to optimize the tradeoffs associated with gridline spacing, gridline definition and junction depth. An extensive search for possible front contact metallization was completed. The back surface field structures along with the screen printed back contacts were optimized to produce open circuit voltages of at least an average of 600 millivolts. After all intended modifications on the process sequence were accomplished, the cells were exhaustively tested. Electrical tests at AMO and 28 C were made before and after boiling water immersion, thermal shock, and storage under conditions of high temperature and high humidity.

  1. Comparison of subjective and fully automated methods for measuring mammographic density.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moshina, Nataliia; Roman, Marta; Sebuødegård, Sofie; Waade, Gunvor G; Ursin, Giske; Hofvind, Solveig

    2018-02-01

    Background Breast radiologists of the Norwegian Breast Cancer Screening Program subjectively classified mammographic density using a three-point scale between 1996 and 2012 and changed into the fourth edition of the BI-RADS classification since 2013. In 2015, an automated volumetric breast density assessment software was installed at two screening units. Purpose To compare volumetric breast density measurements from the automated method with two subjective methods: the three-point scale and the BI-RADS density classification. Material and Methods Information on subjective and automated density assessment was obtained from screening examinations of 3635 women recalled for further assessment due to positive screening mammography between 2007 and 2015. The score of the three-point scale (I = fatty; II = medium dense; III = dense) was available for 2310 women. The BI-RADS density score was provided for 1325 women. Mean volumetric breast density was estimated for each category of the subjective classifications. The automated software assigned volumetric breast density to four categories. The agreement between BI-RADS and volumetric breast density categories was assessed using weighted kappa (k w ). Results Mean volumetric breast density was 4.5%, 7.5%, and 13.4% for categories I, II, and III of the three-point scale, respectively, and 4.4%, 7.5%, 9.9%, and 13.9% for the BI-RADS density categories, respectively ( P for trend density categories was k w  = 0.5 (95% CI = 0.47-0.53; P density increased with increasing density category of the subjective classifications. The agreement between BI-RADS and volumetric breast density categories was moderate.

  2. High-throughput screening with micro-x-ray fluorescence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Havrilla, George J.; Miller, Thomasin C.

    2005-01-01

    Micro-x-ray fluorescence (MXRF) is a useful characterization tool for high-throughput screening of combinatorial libraries. Due to the increasing threat of use of chemical warfare (CW) agents both in military actions and against civilians by terrorist extremists, there is a strong push to improve existing methods and develop means for the detection of a broad spectrum of CW agents in a minimal amount of time to increase national security. This paper describes a combinatorial high-throughput screening technique for CW receptor discovery to aid in sensor development. MXRF can screen materials for elemental composition at the mesoscale level (tens to hundreds of micrometers). The key aspect of this work is the use of commercial MXRF instrumentation coupled with the inherent heteroatom elements within the target molecules of the combinatorial reaction to provide rapid and specific identification of lead species. The method is demonstrated by screening an 11-mer oligopeptide library for selective binding of the degradation products of the nerve agent VX. The identified oligopeptides can be used as selective molecular receptors for sensor development. The MXRF screening method is nondestructive, requires minimal sample preparation or special tags for analysis, and the screening time depends on the desired sensitivity

  3. High-throughput screening (HTS) and modeling of the retinoid ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Presentation at the Retinoids Review 2nd workshop in Brussels, Belgium on the application of high throughput screening and model to the retinoid system Presentation at the Retinoids Review 2nd workshop in Brussels, Belgium on the application of high throughput screening and model to the retinoid system

  4. Small cities face greater impact from automation

    OpenAIRE

    Frank, Morgan R.; Sun, Lijun; Cebrian, Manuel; Youn, Hyejin; Rahwan, Iyad

    2017-01-01

    The city has proven to be the most successful form of human agglomeration and provides wide employment opportunities for its dwellers. As advances in robotics and artificial intelligence revive concerns about the impact of automation on jobs, a question looms: How will automation affect employment in cities? Here, we provide a comparative picture of the impact of automation across U.S. urban areas. Small cities will undertake greater adjustments, such as worker displacement and job content su...

  5. Industrial radiography with phosphor screens

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Broadhead, P.

    1981-01-01

    An experimental system that comprises a film of low silver content and a pair of high resolution phosphor intensifying screens and a commercial industrial X-ray film of similar speed are compared for image quality. It is concluded that the use of phosphor screens offers an increase in image quality when the information is limited by the graininess or quantum mottle of a radiograph which is frequently the case in practical radiography. (author)

  6. Creation of a small high-throughput screening facility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flak, Tod

    2009-01-01

    The creation of a high-throughput screening facility within an organization is a difficult task, requiring a substantial investment of time, money, and organizational effort. Major issues to consider include the selection of equipment, the establishment of data analysis methodologies, and the formation of a group having the necessary competencies. If done properly, it is possible to build a screening system in incremental steps, adding new pieces of equipment and data analysis modules as the need grows. Based upon our experience with the creation of a small screening service, we present some guidelines to consider in planning a screening facility.

  7. Investing in the Future: Automation Marketplace 2009

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breeding, Marshall

    2009-01-01

    In a year where the general economy presented enormous challenges, libraries continued to make investments in automation, especially in products that help improve what and how they deliver to their end users. Access to electronic content remains a key driver. In response to anticipated needs for new approaches to library automation, many companies…

  8. Assessing Technologies for Information-Seeking on Prostate Cancer Screening by Low-Income Men

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susan W. McRoy

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: This paper presents a multipart investigation of the benefits and challenges in deploying automated question-answering as an alternative to web-based searching to provide information about prostate cancer screening for low-income men age 40 years and older. Methods: The study comprised: 1 a survey assessing current use of the Internet, mobile phones and texting; 2 a controlled observational study of both web-based searching and automated question-answering for information about prostate cancer; and 3 a formative field study in which subjects interacted with a health department nurse using text messages. Results: Survey results suggest the target population has greater access to, and familiarity with, cell phones and text messaging compared to the Internet and web-based searching. Participants were significantly more confident using a cell phone and preferred to get health information through text messaging. Participants in the controlled observational study accepted the text messaging system, with most indicating it answered their questions, was easy to use and was a favorable tool for information-seeking. The field study also demonstrated potential for automated question-answering and text messaging to help the target population access health information. Conclusions: A two-way text messaging system has great potential to promote health communication and health information distribution. Participant interest in this system was high and did not seem to be specific to prostate cancer screening, suggesting that information about other topics, such as high blood pressure screening, could be provided similarly. We believe more investigations should be focused on this area, especially on benefits for the low-income community.

  9. A Recommendation Algorithm for Automating Corollary Order Generation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klann, Jeffrey; Schadow, Gunther; McCoy, JM

    2009-01-01

    Manual development and maintenance of decision support content is time-consuming and expensive. We explore recommendation algorithms, e-commerce data-mining tools that use collective order history to suggest purchases, to assist with this. In particular, previous work shows corollary order suggestions are amenable to automated data-mining techniques. Here, an item-based collaborative filtering algorithm augmented with association rule interestingness measures mined suggestions from 866,445 orders made in an inpatient hospital in 2007, generating 584 potential corollary orders. Our expert physician panel evaluated the top 92 and agreed 75.3% were clinically meaningful. Also, at least one felt 47.9% would be directly relevant in guideline development. This automated generation of a rough-cut of corollary orders confirms prior indications about automated tools in building decision support content. It is an important step toward computerized augmentation to decision support development, which could increase development efficiency and content quality while automatically capturing local standards. PMID:20351875

  10. An RNA replication-center assay for high content image-based quantifications of human rhinovirus and coxsackievirus infections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lötzerich Mark

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Picornaviruses are common human and animal pathogens, including polio and rhinoviruses of the enterovirus family, and hepatits A or food-and-mouth disease viruses. There are no effective countermeasures against the vast majority of picornaviruses, with the exception of polio and hepatitis A vaccines. Human rhinoviruses (HRV are the most prevalent picornaviruses comprising more than one hundred serotypes. The existing and also emerging HRVs pose severe health risks for patients with asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Here, we developed a serotype-independent infection assay using a commercially available mouse monoclonal antibody (mabJ2 detecting double-strand RNA. Results Immunocytochemical staining for RNA replication centers using mabJ2 identified cells that were infected with either HRV1A, 2, 14, 16, 37 or coxsackievirus (CV B3, B4 or A21. MabJ2 labeled-cells were immunocytochemically positive for newly synthesized viral capsid proteins from HRV1A, 14, 16, 37 or CVB3, 4. We optimized the procedure for detection of virus replication in settings for high content screening with automated fluorescence microscopy and single cell analysis. Our data show that the infection signal was dependent on multiplicity, time and temperature of infection, and the mabJ2-positive cell numbers correlated with viral titres determined in single step growth curves. The mabJ2 infection assay was adapted to determine the efficacy of anti-viral compounds and small interfering RNAs (siRNAs blocking enterovirus infections. Conclusions We report a broadly applicable, rapid protocol to measure infection of cultured cells with enteroviruses at single cell resolution. This assay can be applied to a wide range of plus-sense RNA viruses, and hence allows comparative studies of viral infection biology without dedicated reagents or procedures. This protocol also allows to directly compare results from small compound or siRNA infection screens

  11. Retinal image quality assessment based on image clarity and content

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdel-Hamid, Lamiaa; El-Rafei, Ahmed; El-Ramly, Salwa; Michelson, Georg; Hornegger, Joachim

    2016-09-01

    Retinal image quality assessment (RIQA) is an essential step in automated screening systems to avoid misdiagnosis caused by processing poor quality retinal images. A no-reference transform-based RIQA algorithm is introduced that assesses images based on five clarity and content quality issues: sharpness, illumination, homogeneity, field definition, and content. Transform-based RIQA algorithms have the advantage of considering retinal structures while being computationally inexpensive. Wavelet-based features are proposed to evaluate the sharpness and overall illumination of the images. A retinal saturation channel is designed and used along with wavelet-based features for homogeneity assessment. The presented sharpness and illumination features are utilized to assure adequate field definition, whereas color information is used to exclude nonretinal images. Several publicly available datasets of varying quality grades are utilized to evaluate the feature sets resulting in area under the receiver operating characteristic curve above 0.99 for each of the individual feature sets. The overall quality is assessed by a classifier that uses the collective features as an input vector. The classification results show superior performance of the algorithm in comparison to other methods from literature. Moreover, the algorithm addresses efficiently and comprehensively various quality issues and is suitable for automatic screening systems.

  12. Mass screening in breast cancer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Strax, P.

    1977-01-01

    Some questions about mass screening in breast cancer are answered it being concluded that: 1. mass screening for the detection of early breast cancer is the only means with proven potential for lowering the death rate of the disease; 2. mammography is an importante - if not the most important modality in mass screening; 3. new film - screen combinations generally available are capable of producing mammograms of excelent quality with radiation doses down to .1 rad into the body of breast. The risk of malignant changes from such dosage - even when given periodically is negligeable. New equipment, to be available, shortly, will use the new film - screen combinations in an automated manner with must reduce cost in time, filme, personnel and processing - of more than 50%. This would make mass screening more practical. (M.A.) [pt

  13. Automated sample mounting and technical advance alignment system for biological crystallography at a synchrotron source

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Snell, Gyorgy; Cork, Carl; Nordmeyer, Robert; Cornell, Earl; Meigs, George; Yegian, Derek; Jaklevic, Joseph; Jin, Jian; Stevens, Raymond C.; Earnest, Thomas

    2004-01-01

    High-throughput data collection for macromolecular crystallography requires an automated sample mounting system for cryo-protected crystals that functions reliably when integrated into protein-crystallography beamlines at synchrotrons. Rapid mounting and dismounting of the samples increases the efficiency of the crystal screening and data collection processes, where many crystals can be tested for the quality of diffraction. The sample-mounting subsystem has random access to 112 samples, stored under liquid nitrogen. Results of extensive tests regarding the performance and reliability of the system are presented. To further increase throughput, we have also developed a sample transport/storage system based on 'puck-shaped' cassettes, which can hold sixteen samples each. Seven cassettes fit into a standard dry shipping Dewar. The capabilities of a robotic crystal mounting and alignment system with instrumentation control software and a relational database allows for automated screening and data collection to be developed

  14. Visible-to-near IR quantum dot-based hypermulticolor high-content screening of herbal medicines for the efficacy monitoring of hair growth promotion and hair loss inhibition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Min Jung; Lim, Chaeyun; Lee, Jun Young; Im, Kyung Ran; Yoon, Kyung-Sup; Song, Joon Myong

    2013-04-01

    There is a growing interest in alopecia prevention strategies, as the number of alopecia patients is increasing. We examine the efficacy of herbal medicine for hair growth promotion/hair loss inhibition in two cell lines via Western blot and high-content screening (HCS). Nine herbal extracts were obtained from three different herbal medicine mixtures using 3 different extraction methods. Five target proteins-IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor-1), TGF-β2 (transforming growth factor-β2), VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor), DKK-1 (Dickkopf-1), and Wnt5α-were observed for the assessment of hair growth promotion/hair loss inhibition efficacy. The efficacies of nine extracts were compared with minoxidil as control. Efficacy was defined as a rise in the expression levels of IGF-1, VEGF, and Wnt5α but a decrease in DKK-1 and TGF-β2. Intracellular concurrent imaging of these proteins was successfully achieved using HCS, employing visible-to-near infrared probing based on quantum-antibody conjugates and hypermulticolor imaging.

  15. Imaging characteristics of different mammographic screens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhn, H; Knüpfer, W

    1992-01-01

    A study of mammography systems with green-emitting screens was conducted to determine how the image quality parameters (apart from dose requirement), such as modulation transfer function (MTF) and Wiener spectrum (WS), depend on the dye content of the compound and coating weight of the screen. In addition, the contribution to total noise of the individual components, i.e., film, screen, and quantum noise, was studied. The quantities derived from MTF and WS, namely detective quantum efficiency (DQE) and noise equivalent quanta (NEQ), were also investigated in regard to their dose dependency. It can be demonstrated that the MTF of the screens becomes more favorable when the dye content is increased, while noise is not significantly affected. This suggests the use of a mammography screen capable of greater detail recognition, requiring at least double the dose of today's conventional systems with approximately 80 microGy system dose. On the other hand, the manufacture of a screen with about 60% of the dose of the conventional system is possible with very little loss in image quality. For the systems in common use today (80 microGy), quantum noise represents a considerable share of the total noise at low spatial frequencies, whereas in high spatial frequencies, the graininess of the film dominates quantum noise and screen structure.

  16. Large-scale Topographical Screen for Investigation of Physical Neural-Guidance Cues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Wei; Tang, Qing Yuan; Jadhav, Amol D.; Narang, Ankit; Qian, Wei Xian; Shi, Peng; Pang, Stella W.

    2015-03-01

    A combinatorial approach was used to present primary neurons with a large library of topographical features in the form of micropatterned substrate for high-throughput screening of physical neural-guidance cues that can effectively promote different aspects of neuronal development, including axon and dendritic outgrowth. Notably, the neuronal-guidance capability of specific features was automatically identified using a customized image processing software, thus significantly increasing the screening throughput with minimal subjective bias. Our results indicate that the anisotropic topographies promote axonal and in some cases dendritic extension relative to the isotropic topographies, while dendritic branching showed preference to plain substrates over the microscale features. The results from this work can be readily applied towards engineering novel biomaterials with precise surface topography that can serve as guidance conduits for neuro-regenerative applications. This novel topographical screening strategy combined with the automated processing capability can also be used for high-throughput screening of chemical or genetic regulatory factors in primary neurons.

  17. ESIM: Edge Similarity for Screen Content Image Quality Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ni, Zhangkai; Ma, Lin; Zeng, Huanqiang; Chen, Jing; Cai, Canhui; Ma, Kai-Kuang

    2017-10-01

    In this paper, an accurate full-reference image quality assessment (IQA) model developed for assessing screen content images (SCIs), called the edge similarity (ESIM), is proposed. It is inspired by the fact that the human visual system (HVS) is highly sensitive to edges that are often encountered in SCIs; therefore, essential edge features are extracted and exploited for conducting IQA for the SCIs. The key novelty of the proposed ESIM lies in the extraction and use of three salient edge features-i.e., edge contrast, edge width, and edge direction. The first two attributes are simultaneously generated from the input SCI based on a parametric edge model, while the last one is derived directly from the input SCI. The extraction of these three features will be performed for the reference SCI and the distorted SCI, individually. The degree of similarity measured for each above-mentioned edge attribute is then computed independently, followed by combining them together using our proposed edge-width pooling strategy to generate the final ESIM score. To conduct the performance evaluation of our proposed ESIM model, a new and the largest SCI database (denoted as SCID) is established in our work and made to the public for download. Our database contains 1800 distorted SCIs that are generated from 40 reference SCIs. For each SCI, nine distortion types are investigated, and five degradation levels are produced for each distortion type. Extensive simulation results have clearly shown that the proposed ESIM model is more consistent with the perception of the HVS on the evaluation of distorted SCIs than the multiple state-of-the-art IQA methods.

  18. Bead-based screening in chemical biology and drug discovery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Komnatnyy, Vitaly V.; Nielsen, Thomas Eiland; Qvortrup, Katrine

    2018-01-01

    libraries for early drug discovery. Among the various library forms, the one-bead-one-compound (OBOC) library, where each bead carries many copies of a single compound, holds the greatest potential for the rapid identification of novel hits against emerging drug targets. However, this potential has not yet...... been fully realized due to a number of technical obstacles. In this feature article, we review the progress that has been made towards bead-based library screening and applications to the discovery of bioactive compounds. We identify the key challenges of this approach and highlight key steps needed......High-throughput screening is an important component of the drug discovery process. The screening of libraries containing hundreds of thousands of compounds requires assays amanable to miniaturisation and automization. Combinatorial chemistry holds a unique promise to deliver structural diverse...

  19. Teachable, high-content analytics for live-cell, phase contrast movies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alworth, Samuel V; Watanabe, Hirotada; Lee, James S J

    2010-09-01

    CL-Quant is a new solution platform for broad, high-content, live-cell image analysis. Powered by novel machine learning technologies and teach-by-example interfaces, CL-Quant provides a platform for the rapid development and application of scalable, high-performance, and fully automated analytics for a broad range of live-cell microscopy imaging applications, including label-free phase contrast imaging. The authors used CL-Quant to teach off-the-shelf universal analytics, called standard recipes, for cell proliferation, wound healing, cell counting, and cell motility assays using phase contrast movies collected on the BioStation CT and BioStation IM platforms. Similar to application modules, standard recipes are intended to work robustly across a wide range of imaging conditions without requiring customization by the end user. The authors validated the performance of the standard recipes by comparing their performance with truth created manually, or by custom analytics optimized for each individual movie (and therefore yielding the best possible result for the image), and validated by independent review. The validation data show that the standard recipes' performance is comparable with the validated truth with low variation. The data validate that the CL-Quant standard recipes can provide robust results without customization for live-cell assays in broad cell types and laboratory settings.

  20. Takeover Time in Highly Automated Vehicles: Noncritical Transitions to and From Manual Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eriksson, Alexander; Stanton, Neville A

    2017-06-01

    The aim of this study was to review existing research into driver control transitions and to determine the time it takes drivers to resume control from a highly automated vehicle in noncritical scenarios. Contemporary research has moved from an inclusive design approach to adhering only to mean/median values when designing control transitions in automated driving. Research into control transitions in highly automated driving has focused on urgent scenarios where drivers are given a relatively short time span to respond to a request to resume manual control. We found a paucity in research into more frequent scenarios for control transitions, such as planned exits from highway systems. Twenty-six drivers drove two scenarios with an automated driving feature activated. Drivers were asked to read a newspaper, or to monitor the system, and to relinquish, or resume, control from the automation when prompted by vehicle systems. Significantly longer control transition times were found between driving with and without secondary tasks. Control transition times were substantially longer than those reported in the peer-reviewed literature. We found that drivers take longer to resume control when under no time pressure compared with that reported in the literature. Moreover, we found that drivers occupied by a secondary task exhibit larger variance and slower responses to requests to resume control. Workload scores implied optimal workload. Intra- and interindividual differences need to be accommodated by vehicle manufacturers and policy makers alike to ensure inclusive design of contemporary systems and safety during control transitions.

  1. Automated data collection based on RoboDiff at the ESRF beamline MASSIF-1

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nurizzo, Didier, E-mail: Didier.nurizzo@esrf.fr; Guichard, Nicolas; McSweeney, Sean; Theveneau, Pascal; Guijarro, Matias; Svensson, Olof; Mueller-Dieckmann, Christoph; Leonard, Gordon [ESRF, The European Synchrotron, 71, Avenue des Martyrs,CS 40220, 38043 Grenoble (France); Bowler, Matthew W. [EMBL Grenoble Outstation, 71 Avenue des Martyrs, CS90181, 38042 Grenoble Cedex 9 (France)

    2016-07-27

    The European Synchrotron Radiation Facility has a long standing history in the automation of experiments in Macromolecular Crystallography. MASSIF-1 (Massively Automated Sample Screening and evaluation Integrated Facility), a beamline constructed as part of the ESRF Upgrade Phase I program, has been open to the external user community since July 2014 and offers a unique completely automated data collection service to both academic and industrial structural biologists.

  2. Artificial intelligence techniques for automatic screening of amblyogenic factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Eenwyk, Jonathan; Agah, Arvin; Giangiacomo, Joseph; Cibis, Gerhard

    2008-01-01

    To develop a low-cost automated video system to effectively screen children aged 6 months to 6 years for amblyogenic factors. In 1994 one of the authors (G.C.) described video vision development assessment, a digitizable analog video-based system combining Brückner pupil red reflex imaging and eccentric photorefraction to screen young children for amblyogenic factors. The images were analyzed manually with this system. We automated the capture of digital video frames and pupil images and applied computer vision and artificial intelligence to analyze and interpret results. The artificial intelligence systems were evaluated by a tenfold testing method. The best system was the decision tree learning approach, which had an accuracy of 77%, compared to the "gold standard" specialist examination with a "refer/do not refer" decision. Criteria for referral were strabismus, including microtropia, and refractive errors and anisometropia considered to be amblyogenic. Eighty-two percent of strabismic individuals were correctly identified. High refractive errors were also correctly identified and referred 90% of the time, as well as significant anisometropia. The program was less correct in identifying more moderate refractive errors, below +5 and less than -7. Although we are pursuing a variety of avenues to improve the accuracy of the automated analysis, the program in its present form provides acceptable cost benefits for detecting ambylogenic factors in children aged 6 months to 6 years.

  3. Development of high-performance X-ray transparent crystallization plates for in situ protein crystal screening and analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Soliman, Ahmed S. M.; Warkentin, Matthew [Cornell University, Ithaca, New York (United States); Apker, Benjamin [MiTeGen LLC, Ithaca, New York (United States); Thorne, Robert E., E-mail: ret6@cornell.edu [Cornell University, Ithaca, New York (United States); MiTeGen LLC, Ithaca, New York (United States)

    2011-07-01

    An optically, UV and X-ray transparent crystallization plate suitable for in situ analysis has been developed. The plate uses contact line pinning rather than wells to confine the liquids. X-ray transparent crystallization plates based upon a novel drop-pinning technology provide a flexible, simple and inexpensive approach to protein crystallization and screening. The plates consist of open cells sealed top and bottom by thin optically, UV and X-ray transparent films. The plates do not need wells or depressions to contain liquids. Instead, protein drops and reservoir solution are held in place by rings with micrometre dimensions that are patterned onto the bottom film. These rings strongly pin the liquid contact lines, thereby improving drop shape and position uniformity, and thus crystallization reproducibility, and simplifying automated image analysis of drop contents. The same rings effectively pin solutions containing salts, proteins, cryoprotectants, oils, alcohols and detergents. Strong pinning by rings allows the plates to be rotated without liquid mixing to 90° for X-ray data collection or to be inverted for hanging-drop crystallization. The plates have the standard SBS format and are compatible with standard liquid-handling robots.

  4. [Comparison of screening performance between primary high-risk HPV screening and high-risk HPV screening plus liquid-based cytology cotesting in diagnosis of cervical precancerous or cancerous lesions].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, X L; Remila, Rezhake; Hu, S Y; Zhang, L; Xu, X Q; Chen, F; Pan, Q J; Zhang, X; Zhao, F H

    2018-05-06

    Objective: To evaluate and compare the screening performance of primary high-risk HPV(HR-HPV) screening and HR-HPV screening plus liquid-based cytology (LBC) cotesting in diagnosis of cervical cancer and precancerous lesions (CIN2+). Methods: We pooled 17 population-based cross-sectional studies which were conducted across China from 1999 to 2008. After obtaining informed consent, all women received liquid-based cytology(LBC)testing, HR-HPV DNA testing. Totally 28 777 women with complete LBC, HPV and biopsy results were included in the final analysis. Screening performance of primary HR-HPV DNA screening and HPV screening plus LBC co-testing in diagnosis of CIN2+ were calculated and compared among different age groups. Results: Among the whole population, the detection rates of primary HR-HPV screening and HR-HPV screening plus LBC co-testing are 3.05% (879 CIN2+) and 3.13%(900 CIN2+), respectively. The sensitivity were 96.4% and 98.7% (χ(2)=19.00, PHPV screening performed better than co-testing (AUC were 0.913 and 0.888; Z= 6.16, PHPV screening, co-testing showed significantly higher colposcopy referral rates (16.5% and 23.6%, respectively, χ(2)=132.00, PHPV screening in diagnosis of CIN2+, and was 12.5 (15.7%(288 cases) vs 1.3%(23 cases)) times as much as the detection rate of HR-HPV screening plus cytology contesting. Conclusion: Compared with primary HR-HPV screening, HR-HPV screening plus cytology co-testing does not show better results in the screening performance for CIN2+ detection, and the cost-effectiveness is not good enough, especially in younger age group.

  5. Screening of Six Medicinal Plant Extracts Obtained by Two Conventional Methods and Supercritical CO₂ Extraction Targeted on Coumarin Content, 2,2-Diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl Radical Scavenging Capacity and Total Phenols Content.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molnar, Maja; Jerković, Igor; Suknović, Dragica; Bilić Rajs, Blanka; Aladić, Krunoslav; Šubarić, Drago; Jokić, Stela

    2017-02-24

    Six medicinal plants Helichrysum italicum (Roth) G. Don, Angelica archangelica L., Lavandula officinalis L., Salvia officinalis L., Melilotus officinalis L., and Ruta graveolens L. were used. The aim of the study was to compare their extracts obtained by Soxhlet (hexane) extraction, maceration with ethanol (EtOH), and supercritical CO₂ extraction (SC-CO₂) targeted on coumarin content (by high performance liquid chromatography with ultraviolet detection, HPLC-UV), 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl radical (DPPH) scavenging capacity, and total phenols (TPs) content (by Folin-Ciocalteu assay). The highest extraction yields were obtained by EtOH, followed by hexane and SC-CO₂. The highest coumarin content (316.37 mg/100 g) was found in M. officinalis EtOH extracts, but its SC-CO₂ extraction yield was very low for further investigation. Coumarin was also found in SC-CO₂ extracts of S. officinalis , R. graveolens , A. archangelica , and L. officinalis . EtOH extracts of all plants exhibited the highest DPPH scavenging capacity. SC-CO₂ extracts exhibited antiradical capacity similar to hexane extracts, while S. officinalis SC-CO₂ extracts were the most potent (95.7%). EtOH extracts contained the most TPs (up to 132.1 mg gallic acid equivalents (GAE)/g from H. italicum ) in comparison to hexane or SC-CO₂ extracts. TPs content was highly correlated to the DPPH scavenging capacity of the extracts. The results indicate that for comprehensive screening of different medicinal plants, various extraction techniques should be used in order to get a better insight into their components content or antiradical capacity.

  6. Screening of subfertile men for testicular carcinoma in situ by an automated image analysis-based cytological test of the ejaculate

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Almstrup, K; Lippert, Marianne; Mogensen, Hanne O

    2011-01-01

    a slightly lower sensitivity (0.51), possibly because of obstruction. We conclude that this novel non-invasive test combining automated immunocytochemistry and advanced image analysis allows identification of TC at the CIS stage with a high specificity, but a negative test does not completely exclude CIS...... and detected in ejaculates with specific CIS markers. We have built a high throughput framework involving automated immunocytochemical staining, scanning microscopy and in silico image analysis allowing automated detection and grading of CIS-like stained objects in semen samples. In this study, 1175 ejaculates...... from 765 subfertile men were tested using this framework. In 5/765 (0.65%) cases, CIS-like cells were identified in the ejaculate. Three of these had bilateral testicular biopsies performed and CIS was histologically confirmed in two. In total, 63 bilateral testicular biopsy were performed...

  7. Computer-aided diagnostics of screening mammography using content-based image retrieval

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deserno, Thomas M.; Soiron, Michael; de Oliveira, Júlia E. E.; de A. Araújo, Arnaldo

    2012-03-01

    Breast cancer is one of the main causes of death among women in occidental countries. In the last years, screening mammography has been established worldwide for early detection of breast cancer, and computer-aided diagnostics (CAD) is being developed to assist physicians reading mammograms. A promising method for CAD is content-based image retrieval (CBIR). Recently, we have developed a classification scheme of suspicious tissue pattern based on the support vector machine (SVM). In this paper, we continue moving towards automatic CAD of screening mammography. The experiments are based on in total 10,509 radiographs that have been collected from different sources. From this, 3,375 images are provided with one and 430 radiographs with more than one chain code annotation of cancerous regions. In different experiments, this data is divided into 12 and 20 classes, distinguishing between four categories of tissue density, three categories of pathology and in the 20 class problem two categories of different types of lesions. Balancing the number of images in each class yields 233 and 45 images remaining in each of the 12 and 20 classes, respectively. Using a two-dimensional principal component analysis, features are extracted from small patches of 128 x 128 pixels and classified by means of a SVM. Overall, the accuracy of the raw classification was 61.6 % and 52.1 % for the 12 and the 20 class problem, respectively. The confusion matrices are assessed for detailed analysis. Furthermore, an implementation of a SVM-based CBIR system for CADx in screening mammography is presented. In conclusion, with a smarter patch extraction, the CBIR approach might reach precision rates that are helpful for the physicians. This, however, needs more comprehensive evaluation on clinical data.

  8. 20180311 - High Throughput Transcriptomics: From screening to pathways (SOT 2018)

    Science.gov (United States)

    The EPA ToxCast effort has screened thousands of chemicals across hundreds of high-throughput in vitro screening assays. The project is now leveraging high-throughput transcriptomic (HTTr) technologies to substantially expand its coverage of biological pathways. The first HTTr sc...

  9. Functional screen printed radio frequency identification tags on flexible substrates, facilitating low-cost and integrated point-of-care diagnostics

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Smith, Suzanne

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available This work explores the practical functionality of ultra-high frequency (UHF) radio frequency identification (RFID) tags screen printed onto various low-cost, flexible substrates. The need for integrated and automated low-cost point...

  10. Laboratory automation in a functional programming language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Runciman, Colin; Clare, Amanda; Harkness, Rob

    2014-12-01

    After some years of use in academic and research settings, functional languages are starting to enter the mainstream as an alternative to more conventional programming languages. This article explores one way to use Haskell, a functional programming language, in the development of control programs for laboratory automation systems. We give code for an example system, discuss some programming concepts that we need for this example, and demonstrate how the use of functional programming allows us to express and verify properties of the resulting code. © 2014 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  11. Automated Protocol for Large-Scale Modeling of Gene Expression Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Michelle Lynn; Calkins, David; Sherman, Woody

    2016-11-28

    With the continued rise of phenotypic- and genotypic-based screening projects, computational methods to analyze, process, and ultimately make predictions in this field take on growing importance. Here we show how automated machine learning workflows can produce models that are predictive of differential gene expression as a function of a compound structure using data from A673 cells as a proof of principle. In particular, we present predictive models with an average accuracy of greater than 70% across a highly diverse ∼1000 gene expression profile. In contrast to the usual in silico design paradigm, where one interrogates a particular target-based response, this work opens the opportunity for virtual screening and lead optimization for desired multitarget gene expression profiles.

  12. Automated classification of Acid Rock Drainage potential from Corescan drill core imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cracknell, M. J.; Jackson, L.; Parbhakar-Fox, A.; Savinova, K.

    2017-12-01

    Classification of the acid forming potential of waste rock is important for managing environmental hazards associated with mining operations. Current methods for the classification of acid rock drainage (ARD) potential usually involve labour intensive and subjective assessment of drill core and/or hand specimens. Manual methods are subject to operator bias, human error and the amount of material that can be assessed within a given time frame is limited. The automated classification of ARD potential documented here is based on the ARD Index developed by Parbhakar-Fox et al. (2011). This ARD Index involves the combination of five indicators: A - sulphide content; B - sulphide alteration; C - sulphide morphology; D - primary neutraliser content; and E - sulphide mineral association. Several components of the ARD Index require accurate identification of sulphide minerals. This is achieved by classifying Corescan Red-Green-Blue true colour images into the presence or absence of sulphide minerals using supervised classification. Subsequently, sulphide classification images are processed and combined with Corescan SWIR-based mineral classifications to obtain information on sulphide content, indices representing sulphide textures (disseminated versus massive and degree of veining), and spatially associated minerals. This information is combined to calculate ARD Index indicator values that feed into the classification of ARD potential. Automated ARD potential classifications of drill core samples associated with a porphyry Cu-Au deposit are compared to manually derived classifications and those obtained by standard static geochemical testing and X-ray diffractometry analyses. Results indicate a high degree of similarity between automated and manual ARD potential classifications. Major differences between approaches are observed in sulphide and neutraliser mineral percentages, likely due to the subjective nature of manual estimates of mineral content. The automated approach

  13. Automated assessment of aortic and main pulmonary arterial diameters using model-based blood vessel segmentation for predicting chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension in low-dose CT lung screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Hidenobu; Kawata, Yoshiki; Niki, Noboru; Sugiura, Toshihiko; Tanabe, Nobuhiro; Kusumoto, Masahiko; Eguchi, Kenji; Kaneko, Masahiro

    2018-02-01

    Chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH) is characterized by obstruction of the pulmonary vasculature by residual organized thrombi. A morphological abnormality inside mediastinum of CTEPH patient is enlargement of pulmonary artery. This paper presents an automated assessment of aortic and main pulmonary arterial diameters for predicting CTEPH in low-dose CT lung screening. The distinctive feature of our method is to segment aorta and main pulmonary artery using both of prior probability and vascular direction which were estimated from mediastinal vascular region using principal curvatures of four-dimensional hyper surface. The method was applied to two datasets, 64 lowdose CT scans of lung cancer screening and 19 normal-dose CT scans of CTEPH patients through the training phase with 121 low-dose CT scans. This paper demonstrates effectiveness of our method for predicting CTEPH in low-dose CT screening.

  14. Cryogenic Beam Screens for High-Energy Particle Accelerators

    CERN Document Server

    Baglin, V; Tavian, L; van Weelderen, R

    2013-01-01

    Applied superconductivity has become a key enabling technology for high-energy particle accelerators, thus making them large helium cryogenic systems operating at very low temperature. The circulation of high-intensity particle beams in these machines generates energy deposition in the first wall through different processes. For thermodynamic efficiency, it is advisable to intercept these beam-induced heat loads, which may be large in comparison with cryostat heat in-leaks, at higher temperature than that of the superconducting magnets of the accelerator, by means of beam screens located in the magnet apertures. Beam screens may also be used as part of the ultra-high vacuum system of the accelerator, by sheltering the gas molecules cryopumped on the beam pipe from impinging radiation and thus avoiding pressure runaway. Space being extremely tight in the magnet apertures, cooling of the long, slender beam screens also raises substantial problems in cryogenic heat transfer and fluid flow. We present sizing rule...

  15. Routine Self-administered, Touch-Screen Computer Based Suicidal Ideation Assessment Linked to Automated Response Team Notification in an HIV Primary Care Setting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, Sarah T.; Willig, James H.; Crane, Heidi M.; Ye, Jiatao; Aban, Inmaculada; Lober, William; Nevin, Christa R.; Batey, D. Scott; Mugavero, Michael J.; McCullumsmith, Cheryl; Wright, Charles; Kitahata, Mari; Raper, James L.; Saag, Micheal S.; Schumacher, Joseph E.

    2010-01-01

    Summary The implementation of routine computer-based screening for suicidal ideation and other psychosocial domains through standardized patient reported outcome instruments in two high volume urban HIV clinics is described. Factors associated with an increased risk of self-reported suicidal ideation were determined. Background HIV/AIDS continues to be associated with an under-recognized risk for suicidal ideation, attempted as well as completed suicide. Suicidal ideation represents an important predictor for subsequent attempted and completed suicide. We sought to implement routine screening of suicidal ideation and associated conditions using computerized patient reported outcome (PRO) assessments. Methods Two geographically distinct academic HIV primary care clinics enrolled patients attending scheduled visits from 12/2005 to 2/2009. Touch-screen-based, computerized PRO assessments were implemented into routine clinical care. Substance abuse (ASSIST), alcohol consumption (AUDIT-C), depression (PHQ-9) and anxiety (PHQ-A) were assessed. The PHQ-9 assesses the frequency of suicidal ideation in the preceding two weeks. A response of “nearly every day” triggered an automated page to pre-determined clinic personnel who completed more detailed self-harm assessments. Results Overall 1,216 (UAB= 740; UW= 476) patients completed initial PRO assessment during the study period. Patients were white (53%; n=646), predominantly males (79%; n=959) with a mean age of 44 (± 10). Among surveyed patients, 170 (14%) endorsed some level of suicidal ideation, while 33 (3%) admitted suicidal ideation nearly every day. In multivariable analysis, suicidal ideation risk was lower with advancing age (OR=0.74 per 10 years;95%CI=0.58-0.96) and was increased with current substance abuse (OR=1.88;95%CI=1.03-3.44) and more severe depression (OR=3.91 moderate;95%CI=2.12-7.22; OR=25.55 severe;95%CI=12.73-51.30). Discussion Suicidal ideation was associated with current substance abuse and

  16. Automated in vivo platform for the discovery of functional food treatments of hypercholesterolemia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert M Littleton

    Full Text Available The zebrafish is becoming an increasingly popular model system for both automated drug discovery and investigating hypercholesterolemia. Here we combine these aspects and for the first time develop an automated high-content confocal assay for treatments of hypercholesterolemia. We also create two algorithms for automated analysis of cardiodynamic data acquired by high-speed confocal microscopy. The first algorithm computes cardiac parameters solely from the frequency-domain representation of cardiodynamic data while the second uses both frequency- and time-domain data. The combined approach resulted in smaller differences relative to manual measurements. The methods are implemented to test the ability of a methanolic extract of the hawthorn plant (Crataegus laevigata to treat hypercholesterolemia and its peripheral cardiovascular effects. Results demonstrate the utility of these methods and suggest the extract has both antihypercholesterolemic and postitively inotropic properties.

  17. Server Interface Descriptions for Automated Testing of JavaScript Web Applications

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Casper Svenning; Møller, Anders; Su, Zhendong

    2013-01-01

    Automated testing of JavaScript web applications is complicated by the communication with servers. Specifically, it is difficult to test the JavaScript code in isolation from the server code and database contents. We present a practical solution to this problem. First, we demonstrate that formal...... server interface descriptions are useful in automated testing of JavaScript web applications for separating the concerns of the client and the server. Second, to support the construction of server interface descriptions for existing applications, we introduce an effective inference technique that learns...... communication patterns from sample data. By incorporating interface descriptions into the testing tool Artemis, our experimental results show that we increase the level of automation for high-coverage testing on a collection of JavaScript web applications that exchange JSON data between the clients and servers...

  18. Taking Over Control From Highly Automated Vehicles in Complex Traffic Situations: The Role of Traffic Density.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gold, Christian; Körber, Moritz; Lechner, David; Bengler, Klaus

    2016-06-01

    The aim of this study was to quantify the impact of traffic density and verbal tasks on takeover performance in highly automated driving. In highly automated vehicles, the driver has to occasionally take over vehicle control when approaching system limits. To ensure safety, the ability of the driver to regain control of the driving task under various driving situations and different driver states needs to be quantified. Seventy-two participants experienced takeover situations requiring an evasive maneuver on a three-lane highway with varying traffic density (zero, 10, and 20 vehicles per kilometer). In a between-subjects design, half of the participants were engaged in a verbal 20-Questions Task, representing speaking on the phone while driving in a highly automated vehicle. The presence of traffic in takeover situations led to longer takeover times and worse takeover quality in the form of shorter time to collision and more collisions. The 20-Questions Task did not influence takeover time but seemed to have minor effects on the takeover quality. For the design and evaluation of human-machine interaction in takeover situations of highly automated vehicles, the traffic state seems to play a major role, compared to the driver state, manipulated by the 20-Questions Task. The present results can be used by developers of highly automated systems to appropriately design human-machine interfaces and to assess the driver's time budget for regaining control. © 2016, Human Factors and Ergonomics Society.

  19. Toward reliable and repeatable automated STEM-EDS metrology with high throughput

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Zhenxin; Donald, Jason; Dutrow, Gavin; Roller, Justin; Ugurlu, Ozan; Verheijen, Martin; Bidiuk, Oleksii

    2018-03-01

    New materials and designs in complex 3D architectures in logic and memory devices have raised complexity in S/TEM metrology. In this paper, we report about a newly developed, automated, scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) based, energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (STEM-EDS) metrology method that addresses these challenges. Different methodologies toward repeatable and efficient, automated STEM-EDS metrology with high throughput are presented: we introduce the best known auto-EDS acquisition and quantification methods for robust and reliable metrology and present how electron exposure dose impacts the EDS metrology reproducibility, either due to poor signalto-noise ratio (SNR) at low dose or due to sample modifications at high dose conditions. Finally, we discuss the limitations of the STEM-EDS metrology technique and propose strategies to optimize the process both in terms of throughput and metrology reliability.

  20. Development of scalable high throughput fermentation approaches for physiological characterisation of yeast and filamentous fungi

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Knudsen, Peter Boldsen

    producing the heterologous model polyketide, 6-methylsalicylic acid (6-MSA). An automated methodology for high throughput screening focusing on growth rates, together with a fully automated method for quantitative physiological characterisation in microtiter plates, was established for yeast. Full...

  1. High intensification screen-film systems in thorax radiography: a clinical comparison

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schaefer, C.B.; Sokiranski, R.; Claussen, C.D.

    1995-01-01

    Objective: The quality of chest images was evaluated for a conventional screen-film system, a new asymmetric screen-film system, and a new uv screen-film system. Materials and Methods: 138 Chest radiographs (69 p.a., 69 lateral) obtained with three different high intensification screen-film combinations were compared. Film density and film contrast were measured. Three readers graded the image quality according to 16 criteria. Results: The asymmetric film-screen combination Insight HC showed the lowest film contrast, the best exposure range, and a elevated film density in the mediastinal area. The asymmetric screen-film system was ranked by all three observers as being substantially better in image quality. Conclusion: Compared to conventional screen-film systems, the new screen-film systems can improve the image quality of chest radiographs. Therefore, the new high intensification screen-film combinations can be used as a low cost alternative to the Amber technique and digital radiography. (orig.) [de

  2. SEMIAUTOMATED SOLID-PHASE EXTRACTION PROCEDURE FOR DRUG SCREENING IN BIOLOGICAL-FLUIDS USING THE ASPEC SYSTEM IN COMBINATION WITH CLEAN SCREEN DAU COLUMNS

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    CHEN, XH; FRANKE, JP; ENSING, K; WIJSBEEK, J; DEZEEUW, RA

    1993-01-01

    The use of a semi-automated solid-phase extraction system (ASPEC) for the screening of drugs in plasma and urine on a single mixed-mode column (Clean Screen DAU) is described. The processes of column preconditioning, sample application, column wash, pH adjustment and elution of the drugs were

  3. A distribution-free multi-factorial profiler for harvesting information from high-density screenings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Besseris, George J

    2013-01-01

    Data screening is an indispensable phase in initiating the scientific discovery process. Fractional factorial designs offer quick and economical options for engineering highly-dense structured datasets. Maximum information content is harvested when a selected fractional factorial scheme is driven to saturation while data gathering is suppressed to no replication. A novel multi-factorial profiler is presented that allows screening of saturated-unreplicated designs by decomposing the examined response to its constituent contributions. Partial effects are sliced off systematically from the investigated response to form individual contrasts using simple robust measures. By isolating each time the disturbance attributed solely to a single controlling factor, the Wilcoxon-Mann-Whitney rank stochastics are employed to assign significance. We demonstrate that the proposed profiler possesses its own self-checking mechanism for detecting a potential influence due to fluctuations attributed to the remaining unexplainable error. Main benefits of the method are: 1) easy to grasp, 2) well-explained test-power properties, 3) distribution-free, 4) sparsity-free, 5) calibration-free, 6) simulation-free, 7) easy to implement, and 8) expanded usability to any type and size of multi-factorial screening designs. The method is elucidated with a benchmarked profiling effort for a water filtration process.

  4. A distribution-free multi-factorial profiler for harvesting information from high-density screenings.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George J Besseris

    Full Text Available Data screening is an indispensable phase in initiating the scientific discovery process. Fractional factorial designs offer quick and economical options for engineering highly-dense structured datasets. Maximum information content is harvested when a selected fractional factorial scheme is driven to saturation while data gathering is suppressed to no replication. A novel multi-factorial profiler is presented that allows screening of saturated-unreplicated designs by decomposing the examined response to its constituent contributions. Partial effects are sliced off systematically from the investigated response to form individual contrasts using simple robust measures. By isolating each time the disturbance attributed solely to a single controlling factor, the Wilcoxon-Mann-Whitney rank stochastics are employed to assign significance. We demonstrate that the proposed profiler possesses its own self-checking mechanism for detecting a potential influence due to fluctuations attributed to the remaining unexplainable error. Main benefits of the method are: 1 easy to grasp, 2 well-explained test-power properties, 3 distribution-free, 4 sparsity-free, 5 calibration-free, 6 simulation-free, 7 easy to implement, and 8 expanded usability to any type and size of multi-factorial screening designs. The method is elucidated with a benchmarked profiling effort for a water filtration process.

  5. [Morphometry of pulmonary tissue: From manual to high throughput automation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sallon, C; Soulet, D; Tremblay, Y

    2017-12-01

    Weibel's research has shown that any alteration of the pulmonary structure has effects on function. This demonstration required a quantitative analysis of lung structures called morphometry. This is possible thanks to stereology, a set of methods based on principles of geometry and statistics. His work has helped to better understand the morphological harmony of the lung, which is essential for its proper functioning. An imbalance leads to pathophysiology such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in adults and bronchopulmonary dysplasia in neonates. It is by studying this imbalance that new therapeutic approaches can be developed. These advances are achievable only through morphometric analytical methods, which are increasingly precise and focused, in particular thanks to the high-throughput automation of these methods. This review makes a comparison between an automated method that we developed in the laboratory and semi-manual methods of morphometric analyzes. The automation of morphometric measurements is a fundamental asset in the study of pulmonary pathophysiology because it is an assurance of robustness, reproducibility and speed. This tool will thus contribute significantly to the acceleration of the race for the development of new drugs. Copyright © 2017 SPLF. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  6. Breast Cancer Screening and Social Media: a Content Analysis of Evidence Use and Guideline Opinions on Twitter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nastasi, Anthony; Bryant, Tyler; Canner, Joseph K; Dredze, Mark; Camp, Melissa S; Nagarajan, Neeraja

    2018-06-01

    There is ongoing debate regarding the best mammography screening practices. Twitter has become a powerful tool for disseminating medical news and fostering healthcare conversations; however, little work has been done examining these conversations in the context of how users are sharing evidence and discussing current guidelines for breast cancer screening. To characterize the Twitter conversation on mammography and assess the quality of evidence used as well as opinions regarding current screening guidelines, individual tweets using mammography-related hashtags were prospectively pulled from Twitter from 5 November 2015 to 11 December 2015. Content analysis was performed on the tweets by abstracting data related to user demographics, content, evidence use, and guideline opinions. Standard descriptive statistics were used to summarize the results. Comparisons were made by demographics, tweet type (testable claim, advice, personal experience, etc.), and user type (non-healthcare, physician, cancer specialist, etc.). The primary outcomes were how users are tweeting about breast cancer screening, the quality of evidence they are using, and their opinions regarding guidelines. The most frequent user type of the 1345 tweets was "non-healthcare" with 323 tweets (32.5%). Physicians had 1.87 times higher odds (95% CI, 0.69-5.07) of providing explicit support with a reference and 11.70 times higher odds (95% CI, 3.41-40.13) of posting a tweet likely to be supported by the scientific community compared to non-healthcare users. Only 2.9% of guideline tweets approved of the guidelines while 14.6% claimed to be confused by them. Non-healthcare users comprise a significant proportion of participants in mammography conversations, with tweets often containing claims that are false, not explicitly backed by scientific evidence, and in favor of alternative "natural" breast cancer prevention and treatment. Furthermore, users appear to have low approval and confusion regarding

  7. Automated lung nodule classification following automated nodule detection on CT: A serial approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Armato, Samuel G. III; Altman, Michael B.; Wilkie, Joel; Sone, Shusuke; Li, Feng; Doi, Kunio; Roy, Arunabha S.

    2003-01-01

    We have evaluated the performance of an automated classifier applied to the task of differentiating malignant and benign lung nodules in low-dose helical computed tomography (CT) scans acquired as part of a lung cancer screening program. The nodules classified in this manner were initially identified by our automated lung nodule detection method, so that the output of automated lung nodule detection was used as input to automated lung nodule classification. This study begins to narrow the distinction between the 'detection task' and the 'classification task'. Automated lung nodule detection is based on two- and three-dimensional analyses of the CT image data. Gray-level-thresholding techniques are used to identify initial lung nodule candidates, for which morphological and gray-level features are computed. A rule-based approach is applied to reduce the number of nodule candidates that correspond to non-nodules, and the features of remaining candidates are merged through linear discriminant analysis to obtain final detection results. Automated lung nodule classification merges the features of the lung nodule candidates identified by the detection algorithm that correspond to actual nodules through another linear discriminant classifier to distinguish between malignant and benign nodules. The automated classification method was applied to the computerized detection results obtained from a database of 393 low-dose thoracic CT scans containing 470 confirmed lung nodules (69 malignant and 401 benign nodules). Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis was used to evaluate the ability of the classifier to differentiate between nodule candidates that correspond to malignant nodules and nodule candidates that correspond to benign lesions. The area under the ROC curve for this classification task attained a value of 0.79 during a leave-one-out evaluation

  8. Automatic 1H-NMR Screening of Fatty Acid Composition in Edible Oils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Castejón

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available In this work, we introduce an NMR-based screening method for the fatty acid composition analysis of edible oils. We describe the evaluation and optimization needed for the automated analysis of vegetable oils by low-field NMR to obtain the fatty acid composition (FAC. To achieve this, two scripts, which automatically analyze and interpret the spectral data, were developed. The objective of this work was to drive forward the automated analysis of the FAC by NMR. Due to the fact that this protocol can be carried out at low field and that the complete process from sample preparation to printing the report only takes about 3 min, this approach is promising to become a fundamental technique for high-throughput screening. To demonstrate the applicability of this method, the fatty acid composition of extra virgin olive oils from various Spanish olive varieties (arbequina, cornicabra, hojiblanca, manzanilla, and picual was determined by 1H-NMR spectroscopy according to this protocol.

  9. High-throughput screening to identify inhibitors of lysine demethylases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gale, Molly; Yan, Qin

    2015-01-01

    Lysine demethylases (KDMs) are epigenetic regulators whose dysfunction is implicated in the pathology of many human diseases including various types of cancer, inflammation and X-linked intellectual disability. Particular demethylases have been identified as promising therapeutic targets, and tremendous efforts are being devoted toward developing suitable small-molecule inhibitors for clinical and research use. Several High-throughput screening strategies have been developed to screen for small-molecule inhibitors of KDMs, each with advantages and disadvantages in terms of time, cost, effort, reliability and sensitivity. In this Special Report, we review and evaluate the High-throughput screening methods utilized for discovery of novel small-molecule KDM inhibitors.

  10. An Automated Design Approach for High-Lift Systems incorporating Eccentric Beam Actuators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Steenhuizen, D.; Van Tooren, M.J.L.

    2010-01-01

    In order to asess the merit of novel high-lift structural concepts to the design of contemporary and future transport aircraft, a highly automated design routine is elaborated. The structure, purpose and evolution of this design routine is set-out with the use of Knowledge-Based Engineering

  11. Application of the H-Mode, a Design and Interaction Concept for Highly Automated Vehicles, to Aircraft

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodrich, Kenneth H.; Flemisch, Frank O.; Schutte, Paul C.; Williams, Ralph A.

    2006-01-01

    Driven by increased safety, efficiency, and airspace capacity, automation is playing an increasing role in aircraft operations. As aircraft become increasingly able to autonomously respond to a range of situations with performance surpassing human operators, we are compelled to look for new methods that help us understand their use and guide their design using new forms of automation and interaction. We propose a novel design metaphor to aid the conceptualization, design, and operation of highly-automated aircraft. Design metaphors transfer meaning from common experiences to less familiar applications or functions. A notable example is the "Desktop metaphor" for manipulating files on a computer. This paper describes a metaphor for highly automated vehicles known as the H-metaphor and a specific embodiment of the metaphor known as the H-mode as applied to aircraft. The fundamentals of the H-metaphor are reviewed followed by an overview of an exploratory usability study investigating human-automation interaction issues for a simple H-mode implementation. The envisioned application of the H-mode concept to aircraft is then described as are two planned evaluations.

  12. Screening of Six Medicinal Plant Extracts Obtained by Two Conventional Methods and Supercritical CO2 Extraction Targeted on Coumarin Content, 2,2-Diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl Radical Scavenging Capacity and Total Phenols Content

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maja Molnar

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Six medicinal plants Helichrysum italicum (Roth G. Don, Angelica archangelica L., Lavandula officinalis L., Salvia officinalis L., Melilotus officinalis L., and Ruta graveolens L. were used. The aim of the study was to compare their extracts obtained by Soxhlet (hexane extraction, maceration with ethanol (EtOH, and supercritical CO2 extraction (SC-CO2 targeted on coumarin content (by high performance liquid chromatography with ultraviolet detection, HPLC-UV, 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl radical (DPPH scavenging capacity, and total phenols (TPs content (by Folin–Ciocalteu assay. The highest extraction yields were obtained by EtOH, followed by hexane and SC-CO2. The highest coumarin content (316.37 mg/100 g was found in M. officinalis EtOH extracts, but its SC-CO2 extraction yield was very low for further investigation. Coumarin was also found in SC-CO2 extracts of S. officinalis, R. graveolens, A. archangelica, and L. officinalis. EtOH extracts of all plants exhibited the highest DPPH scavenging capacity. SC-CO2 extracts exhibited antiradical capacity similar to hexane extracts, while S. officinalis SC-CO2 extracts were the most potent (95.7%. EtOH extracts contained the most TPs (up to 132.1 mg gallic acid equivalents (GAE/g from H. italicum in comparison to hexane or SC-CO2 extracts. TPs content was highly correlated to the DPPH scavenging capacity of the extracts. The results indicate that for comprehensive screening of different medicinal plants, various extraction techniques should be used in order to get a better insight into their components content or antiradical capacity.

  13. A Novel High-Content Immunofluorescence Assay as a Tool to Identify at the Single Cell Level γ-Globin Inducing Compounds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Durlak

    Full Text Available The identification of drugs capable of reactivating γ-globin to ameliorate β-thalassemia and Sickle Cell anemia is still a challenge, as available γ-globin inducers still have limited clinical indications. High-throughput screenings (HTS aimed to identify new potentially therapeutic drugs require suitable first-step-screening methods combining the possibility to detect variation in the γ/β globin ratio with the robustness of a cell line. We took advantage of a K562 cell line variant expressing β-globin (β-K562 to set up a new multiplexed high-content immunofluorescence assay for the quantification of γ- and β-globin content at single-cell level. The assay was validated by using the known globin inducers hemin, hydroxyurea and butyric acid and further tested in a pilot screening that confirmed HDACs as targets for γ-globin induction (as proved by siRNA-mediated HDAC3 knockdown and by treatment with HDACs inhibitors entinostat and dacinostat and identified Heme-oxygenases as novel candidate targets for γ-globin induction. Indeed, Heme-oxygenase2 siRNA knockdown as well as its inhibition by Tin protoporphyrin-IX (TinPPIX greatly increased γ-globin expression. This result is particularly interesting as several metalloporphyrins have already been developed for clinical uses and could be tested (alone or in combination with other drugs to improve pharmacological γ-globin reactivation for the treatment of β-hemoglobinopathies.

  14. Evaluation of a semi-automated computer algorithm for measuring total fat and visceral fat content in lambs undergoing in vivo whole body computed tomography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenblatt, Alana J; Scrivani, Peter V; Boisclair, Yves R; Reeves, Anthony P; Ramos-Nieves, Jose M; Xie, Yiting; Erb, Hollis N

    2017-10-01

    Computed tomography (CT) is a suitable tool for measuring body fat, since it is non-destructive and can be used to differentiate metabolically active visceral fat from total body fat. Whole body analysis of body fat is likely to be more accurate than single CT slice estimates of body fat. The aim of this study was to assess the agreement between semi-automated computer analysis of whole body volumetric CT data and conventional proximate (chemical) analysis of body fat in lambs. Data were collected prospectively from 12 lambs that underwent duplicate whole body CT, followed by slaughter and carcass analysis by dissection and chemical analysis. Agreement between methods for quantification of total and visceral fat was assessed by Bland-Altman plot analysis. The repeatability of CT was assessed for these measures using the mean difference of duplicated measures. When compared to chemical analysis, CT systematically underestimated total and visceral fat contents by more than 10% of the mean fat weight. Therefore, carcass analysis and semi-automated CT computer measurements were not interchangeable for quantifying body fat content without the use of a correction factor. CT acquisition was repeatable, with a mean difference of repeated measures being close to zero. Therefore, uncorrected whole body CT might have an application for assessment of relative changes in fat content, especially in growing lambs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. The influence of highly automated driving on the self-perception of drivers in the context of Conduct-by-Wire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kauer, Michaela; Franz, Benjamin; Maier, Alexander; Bruder, Ralph

    2015-01-01

    Today, new driving paradigms are being introduced that aim to reduce the number of standalone driver assistance systems by combining these into one overarching system. This is done to reduce the demands on drivers but often leads to a higher degree of automation. Feasibility and driver behaviour are often the subject of studies, but this is contrasted by a lack of research into the influence of highly automated driving on the self-perception of drivers. This article begins to close this gap by investigating the influences of one highly automated driving concept--Conduct-by-Wire--on the self-perception of drivers via a combined driving simulator and interview study. The aim of this work is to identify changes in the role concept of drivers indicated by highly automated driving, to evaluate these changes from the drivers' point of view and to give suggestions of possible improvements to the design of highly automated vehicles.

  16. Receptor-based high-throughput screening and identification of estrogens in dietary supplements using bioaffinity liquid-chromatography ion mobility mass spectrometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aqai, Payam; Blesa, Natalia Gómez; Major, Hilary; Pedotti, Mattia; Varani, Luca; Ferrero, Valentina E V; Haasnoot, Willem; Nielen, Michel W F

    2013-11-01

    A high-throughput bioaffinity liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (BioMS) approach was developed and applied for the screening and identification of recombinant human estrogen receptor α (ERα) ligands in dietary supplements. For screening, a semi-automated mass spectrometric ligand binding assay was developed applying (13)C2, (15) N-tamoxifen as non-radioactive label and fast ultra-high-performance-liquid chromatography-electrospray ionisation-triple-quadrupole-MS (UPLC-QqQ-MS), operated in the single reaction monitoring mode, as a readout system. Binding of the label to ERα-coated paramagnetic microbeads was inhibited by competing estrogens in the sample extract yielding decreased levels of the label in UPLC-QqQ-MS. The label showed high ionisation efficiency in positive electrospray ionisation (ESI) mode, so the developed BioMS approach is able to screen for estrogens in dietary supplements despite their poor ionisation efficiency in both positive and negative ESI modes. The assay was performed in a 96-well plate, and all these wells could be measured within 3 h. Estrogens in suspect extracts were identified by full-scan accurate mass and collision-cross section (CCS) values from a UPLC-ion mobility-Q-time-of-flight-MS (UPLC-IM-Q-ToF-MS) equipped with a novel atmospheric pressure ionisation source. Thanks to the novel ion source, this instrument provided picogram sensitivity for estrogens in the negative ion mode and an additional identification point (experimental CCS values) next to retention time, accurate mass and tandem mass spectrometry data. The developed combination of bioaffinity screening with UPLC-QqQ-MS and identification with UPLC-IM-Q-ToF-MS provides an extremely powerful analytical tool for early warning of ERα bioactive compounds in dietary supplements as demonstrated by analysis of selected dietary supplements in which different estrogens were identified.

  17. Recent trends in laboratory automation in the pharmaceutical industry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rutherford, M L; Stinger, T

    2001-05-01

    The impact of robotics and automation on the pharmaceutical industry over the last two decades has been significant. In the last ten years, the emphasis of laboratory automation has shifted from the support of manufactured products and quality control of laboratory applications, to research and development. This shift has been the direct result of an increased emphasis on the identification, development and eventual marketing of innovative new products. In this article, we will briefly identify and discuss some of the current trends in laboratory automation in the pharmaceutical industry as they apply to research and development, including screening, sample management, combinatorial chemistry, ADME/Tox and pharmacokinetics.

  18. An Automated Method for High-Throughput Screening of Arabidopsis Rosette Growth in Multi-Well Plates and Its Validation in Stress Conditions

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    De Diego, N.; Fürst, T.; Humplík, Jan; Ugena, L.; Podlešáková, K.; Spíchal, L.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 8, OCT 4 (2017), č. článku 1702. ISSN 1664-462X R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1204 Institutional support: RVO:61389030 Keywords : salt stress * chlorophyll fluorescence * salinity tolerance * plant-responses * cold-tolerance * water-deficit * thaliana * selection * platform * reveals * high-throughput screening assay * Arabidopsis * multi-well plates * rosette growth * stress conditions Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology OBOR OECD: Plant sciences, botany Impact factor: 4.298, year: 2016

  19. Pediatric tuberculosis immigration screening in high-immigration, low-incidence countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarez, G G; Clark, M; Altpeter, E; Douglas, P; Jones, J; Paty, M-C; Posey, D L; Chemtob, D

    2010-12-01

    Tuberculosis (TB) screening in migrant children, including immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers, is an ongoing challenge in low TB incidence countries. Many children from high TB incidence countries harbor latent TB infection (LTBI), and some have active TB disease at the point of immigration into host nations. Young children who harbor LTBI have a high risk of progression to TB disease and are at a higher risk than adults of developing disseminated severe forms of TB with significant morbidity and mortality. Many countries have developed immigration TB screening programs to suit the needs of adults, but have not focused much attention on migrant children. To compare the TB immigration medical examination requirements in children in selected countries with high immigration and low TB incidence rates. Descriptive study of TB immigration screening programs for systematically selected countries. Of 18 eligible countries, 16 responded to the written survey and telephone interview. No two countries had the same approach to TB screening among migrant children. The optimal evidenced-based manner in which to screen migrant children requires further research.

  20. More comprehensive discussion of CRC screening associated with higher screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosen, David M; Feldstein, Adrianne C; Perrin, Nancy A; Rosales, A Gabriella; Smith, David H; Liles, Elizabeth G; Schneider, Jennifer L; Meyers, Ronald E; Elston-Lafata, Jennifer

    2013-04-01

    Examine association of comprehensiveness of colorectal cancer (CRC) screening discussion by primary care physicians (PCPs) with completion of CRC screening. Observational study in Kaiser Permanente Northwest, a group-model health maintenance organization. A total of 883 participants overdue for CRC screening received an automated telephone call (ATC) between April and June 2009 encouraging CRC screening. Between January and March 2010, participants completed a survey on PCPs' discussion of CRC screening and patient beliefs regarding screening. receipt of CRC screening (assessed by electronic medical record [EMR], 9 months after ATC). Primary independent variable: comprehensiveness of CRC screening discussion by PCPs (7-item scale). Secondary independent variables: perceived benefits of screening (4-item scale assessing respondents' agreement with benefits of timely screening) and primary care utilization (EMR; 9 months after ATC). The independent association of variables with CRC screening was assessed with logistic regression. Average scores for comprehensiveness of CRC discussion and perceived benefits were 0.4 (range 0-1) and 4.0 (range 1-5), respectively. A total of 28.2% (n = 249) completed screening, 84% of whom had survey assessments after their screening date. Of screeners, 95.2% completed the fecal immunochemical test. More comprehensive discussion of CRC screening was associated with increased screening (odds ratio [OR] = 1.51, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.03-2.21). Higher perceived benefits (OR = 1.46, 95% CI = 1.13-1.90) and 1 or more PCP visits (OR = 5.82, 95% CI = 3.87-8.74) were also associated with increased screening. More comprehensive discussion of CRC screening was independently associated with increased CRC screening. Primary care utilization was even more strongly associated with CRC screening, irrespective of discussion of CRC screening.

  1. High Throughput In Situ XAFS Screening of Catalysts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tsapatsaris, Nikolaos; Beesley, Angela M.; Weiher, Norbert; Tatton, Helen; Schroeder, Sven L. M.; Dent, Andy J.; Mosselmans, Frederick J. W.; Tromp, Moniek; Russu, Sergio; Evans, John; Harvey, Ian; Hayama, Shu

    2007-01-01

    We outline and demonstrate the feasibility of high-throughput (HT) in situ XAFS for synchrotron radiation studies. An XAS data acquisition and control system for the analysis of dynamic materials libraries under control of temperature and gaseous environments has been developed. The system is compatible with the 96-well industry standard and coupled to multi-stream quadrupole mass spectrometry (QMS) analysis of reactor effluents. An automated analytical workflow generates data quickly compared to traditional individual spectrum acquisition and analyses them in quasi-real time using an HT data analysis tool based on IFFEFIT. The system was used for the automated characterization of a library of 91 catalyst precursors containing ternary combinations of Cu, Pt, and Au on γ-Al2O3, and for the in situ characterization of Au catalysts supported on Al2O3 and TiO2

  2. An Automated Detection System for Microaneurysms That Is Effective across Different Racial Groups.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saleh, George Michael; Wawrzynski, James; Caputo, Silvestro; Peto, Tunde; Al Turk, Lutfiah Ismail; Wang, Su; Hu, Yin; Da Cruz, Lyndon; Smith, Phil; Tang, Hongying Lilian

    2016-01-01

    Patients without diabetic retinopathy (DR) represent a large proportion of the caseload seen by the DR screening service so reliable recognition of the absence of DR in digital fundus images (DFIs) is a prime focus of automated DR screening research. We investigate the use of a novel automated DR detection algorithm to assess retinal DFIs for absence of DR. A retrospective, masked, and controlled image-based study was undertaken. 17,850 DFIs of patients from six different countries were assessed for DR by the automated system and by human graders. The system's performance was compared across DFIs from the different countries/racial groups. The sensitivities for detection of DR by the automated system were Kenya 92.8%, Botswana 90.1%, Norway 93.5%, Mongolia 91.3%, China 91.9%, and UK 90.1%. The specificities were Kenya 82.7%, Botswana 83.2%, Norway 81.3%, Mongolia 82.5%, China 83.0%, and UK 79%. There was little variability in the calculated sensitivities and specificities across the six different countries involved in the study. These data suggest the possible scalability of an automated DR detection platform that enables rapid identification of patients without DR across a wide range of races.

  3. Subfamily logos: visualization of sequence deviations at alignment positions with high information content

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beitz Eric

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Recognition of relevant sequence deviations can be valuable for elucidating functional differences between protein subfamilies. Interesting residues at highly conserved positions can then be mutated and experimentally analyzed. However, identification of such sites is tedious because automated approaches are scarce. Results Subfamily logos visualize subfamily-specific sequence deviations. The display is similar to classical sequence logos but extends into the negative range. Positive, upright characters correspond to residues which are characteristic for the subfamily, negative, upside-down characters to residues typical for the remaining sequences. The symbol height is adjusted to the information content of the alignment position. Residues which are conserved throughout do not appear. Conclusion Subfamily logos provide an intuitive display of relevant sequence deviations. The method has proven to be valid using a set of 135 aligned aquaporin sequences in which established subfamily-specific positions were readily identified by the algorithm.

  4. The Effect of Information Analysis Automation Display Content on Human Judgment Performance in Noisy Environments

    OpenAIRE

    Bass, Ellen J.; Baumgart, Leigh A.; Shepley, Kathryn Klein

    2012-01-01

    Displaying both the strategy that information analysis automation employs to makes its judgments and variability in the task environment may improve human judgment performance, especially in cases where this variability impacts the judgment performance of the information analysis automation. This work investigated the contribution of providing either information analysis automation strategy information, task environment information, or both, on human judgment performance in a domain where noi...

  5. Identifying Relationships between High-Risk Sexual Behaviors and Screening Positive for Chlamydia and Gonorrhea in School-Wide Screening Events

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salerno, Jennifer; Darling-Fisher, Cindy; Hawkins, Nicole M.; Fraker, Elizabeth

    2013-01-01

    Background: This article describes a school-wide sexually transmitted infection (STI) screening to identify adolescent high-risk sexual behaviors, STI history/incidence, and presence of chlamydia and gonorrhea, and examines relationships between high-risk behaviors and screening positive for chlamydia and gonorrhea in an alternative high school…

  6. Calcium content and high calcium adaptation of plants in karst areas of southwestern Hunan, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Xiaocong; Deng, Xiangwen; Xiang, Wenhua; Lei, Pifeng; Ouyang, Shuai; Wen, Hongfang; Chen, Liang

    2018-05-01

    Rocky desertification is a major ecological problem of land degradation in karst areas. In these areas, the high soil calcium (Ca) content has become an important environmental factor that can affect the restoration of vegetation. Consequently, the screening of plant species that can adapt to high Ca soil environments is a critical step in vegetation restoration. In this study, three grades of rocky desertification sample areas were selected in karst areas of southwestern Hunan, China (LRD: light rocky desertification; MRD: moderate rocky desertification; and IRD: intense rocky desertification). Each grade of these sample areas had three sample plots in different slope positions, each of which had four small quadrats (one in rocky-side areas, three in non-rocky-side areas). We measured the Ca content of leaves, branches, and roots from 41 plant species, as well as soil total Ca (TCa) and exchangeable Ca (ECa) at depths of 0-15, 15-30, and 30-45 cm in each small quadrat. The results showed that the soil Ca2+ content in rocky-side areas was significantly higher than that in non-rocky-side areas (p desertification, in the order IRD > MRD > LRD. For all plant functional groups, the plant Ca content of aboveground parts was significantly higher than that of the belowground parts (p 1). The differences in Ca2+ content between the aboveground and belowground parts of the 17 dominant species were calculated, and their correlations with soil ECa content were analyzed. The results showed that these 17 species can be divided into three categories: Ca-indifferent plants, high-Ca plants, and low-Ca plants. These findings provide a vital theoretical basis and practical guide for vegetation restoration and ecosystem reconstruction in rocky desertification areas.

  7. Small cities face greater impact from automation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Lijun; Cebrian, Manuel; Rahwan, Iyad

    2018-01-01

    The city has proved to be the most successful form of human agglomeration and provides wide employment opportunities for its dwellers. As advances in robotics and artificial intelligence revive concerns about the impact of automation on jobs, a question looms: how will automation affect employment in cities? Here, we provide a comparative picture of the impact of automation across US urban areas. Small cities will undertake greater adjustments, such as worker displacement and job content substitutions. We demonstrate that large cities exhibit increased occupational and skill specialization due to increased abundance of managerial and technical professions. These occupations are not easily automatable, and, thus, reduce the potential impact of automation in large cities. Our results pass several robustness checks including potential errors in the estimation of occupational automation and subsampling of occupations. Our study provides the first empirical law connecting two societal forces: urban agglomeration and automation's impact on employment. PMID:29436514

  8. Small cities face greater impact from automation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, Morgan R; Sun, Lijun; Cebrian, Manuel; Youn, Hyejin; Rahwan, Iyad

    2018-02-01

    The city has proved to be the most successful form of human agglomeration and provides wide employment opportunities for its dwellers. As advances in robotics and artificial intelligence revive concerns about the impact of automation on jobs, a question looms: how will automation affect employment in cities? Here, we provide a comparative picture of the impact of automation across US urban areas. Small cities will undertake greater adjustments, such as worker displacement and job content substitutions. We demonstrate that large cities exhibit increased occupational and skill specialization due to increased abundance of managerial and technical professions. These occupations are not easily automatable, and, thus, reduce the potential impact of automation in large cities. Our results pass several robustness checks including potential errors in the estimation of occupational automation and subsampling of occupations. Our study provides the first empirical law connecting two societal forces: urban agglomeration and automation's impact on employment. © 2018 The Authors.

  9. Automation of a high risk medication regime algorithm in a home health care population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olson, Catherine H; Dierich, Mary; Westra, Bonnie L

    2014-10-01

    Create an automated algorithm for predicting elderly patients' medication-related risks for readmission and validate it by comparing results with a manual analysis of the same patient population. Outcome and Assessment Information Set (OASIS) and medication data were reused from a previous, manual study of 911 patients from 15 Medicare-certified home health care agencies. The medication data was converted into standardized drug codes using APIs managed by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), and then integrated in an automated algorithm that calculates patients' high risk medication regime scores (HRMRs). A comparison of the results between algorithm and manual process was conducted to determine how frequently the HRMR scores were derived which are predictive of readmission. HRMR scores are composed of polypharmacy (number of drugs), Potentially Inappropriate Medications (PIM) (drugs risky to the elderly), and Medication Regimen Complexity Index (MRCI) (complex dose forms, instructions or administration). The algorithm produced polypharmacy, PIM, and MRCI scores that matched with 99%, 87% and 99% of the scores, respectively, from the manual analysis. Imperfect match rates resulted from discrepancies in how drugs were classified and coded by the manual analysis vs. the automated algorithm. HRMR rules lack clarity, resulting in clinical judgments for manual coding that were difficult to replicate in the automated analysis. The high comparison rates for the three measures suggest that an automated clinical tool could use patients' medication records to predict their risks of avoidable readmissions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Mass spectrometric-based stable isotopic 2-aminobenzoic acid glycan mapping for rapid glycan screening of biotherapeutics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prien, Justin M; Prater, Bradley D; Qin, Qiang; Cockrill, Steven L

    2010-02-15

    Fast, sensitive, robust methods for "high-level" glycan screening are necessary during various stages of a biotherapeutic product's lifecycle, including clone selection, process changes, and quality control for lot release testing. Traditional glycan screening involves chromatographic or electrophoretic separation-based methods, and, although reproducible, these methods can be time-consuming. Even ultrahigh-performance chromatographic and microfluidic integrated LC/MS systems, which work on the tens of minute time scale, become lengthy when hundreds of samples are to be analyzed. Comparatively, a direct infusion mass spectrometry (MS)-based glycan screening method acquires data on a millisecond time scale, exhibits exquisite sensitivity and reproducibility, and is amenable to automated peak annotation. In addition, characterization of glycan species via sequential mass spectrometry can be performed simultaneously. Here, we demonstrate a quantitative high-throughput MS-based mapping approach using stable isotope 2-aminobenzoic acid (2-AA) for rapid "high-level" glycan screening.

  11. Artificial Intelligence Techniques for Automatic Screening of Amblyogenic Factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Eenwyk, Jonathan; Agah, Arvin; Giangiacomo, Joseph; Cibis, Gerhard

    2008-01-01

    Purpose To develop a low-cost automated video system to effectively screen children aged 6 months to 6 years for amblyogenic factors. Methods In 1994 one of the authors (G.C.) described video vision development assessment, a digitizable analog video-based system combining Brückner pupil red reflex imaging and eccentric photorefraction to screen young children for amblyogenic factors. The images were analyzed manually with this system. We automated the capture of digital video frames and pupil images and applied computer vision and artificial intelligence to analyze and interpret results. The artificial intelligence systems were evaluated by a tenfold testing method. Results The best system was the decision tree learning approach, which had an accuracy of 77%, compared to the “gold standard” specialist examination with a “refer/do not refer” decision. Criteria for referral were strabismus, including microtropia, and refractive errors and anisometropia considered to be amblyogenic. Eighty-two percent of strabismic individuals were correctly identified. High refractive errors were also correctly identified and referred 90% of the time, as well as significant anisometropia. The program was less correct in identifying more moderate refractive errors, below +5 and less than −7. Conclusions Although we are pursuing a variety of avenues to improve the accuracy of the automated analysis, the program in its present form provides acceptable cost benefits for detecting ambylogenic factors in children aged 6 months to 6 years. PMID:19277222

  12. A Data Analysis Pipeline Accounting for Artifacts in Tox21 Quantitative High-Throughput Screening Assays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsieh, Jui-Hua; Sedykh, Alexander; Huang, Ruili; Xia, Menghang; Tice, Raymond R

    2015-08-01

    A main goal of the U.S. Tox21 program is to profile a 10K-compound library for activity against a panel of stress-related and nuclear receptor signaling pathway assays using a quantitative high-throughput screening (qHTS) approach. However, assay artifacts, including nonreproducible signals and assay interference (e.g., autofluorescence), complicate compound activity interpretation. To address these issues, we have developed a data analysis pipeline that includes an updated signal noise-filtering/curation protocol and an assay interference flagging system. To better characterize various types of signals, we adopted a weighted version of the area under the curve (wAUC) to quantify the amount of activity across the tested concentration range in combination with the assay-dependent point-of-departure (POD) concentration. Based on the 32 Tox21 qHTS assays analyzed, we demonstrate that signal profiling using wAUC affords the best reproducibility (Pearson's r = 0.91) in comparison with the POD (0.82) only or the AC(50) (i.e., half-maximal activity concentration, 0.81). Among the activity artifacts characterized, cytotoxicity is the major confounding factor; on average, about 8% of Tox21 compounds are affected, whereas autofluorescence affects less than 0.5%. To facilitate data evaluation, we implemented two graphical user interface applications, allowing users to rapidly evaluate the in vitro activity of Tox21 compounds. © 2015 Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening.

  13. Effects of Non-Driving Related Task Modalities on Takeover Performance in Highly Automated Driving.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wandtner, Bernhard; Schömig, Nadja; Schmidt, Gerald

    2018-04-01

    Aim of the study was to evaluate the impact of different non-driving related tasks (NDR tasks) on takeover performance in highly automated driving. During highly automated driving, it is allowed to engage in NDR tasks temporarily. However, drivers must be able to take over control when reaching a system limit. There is evidence that the type of NDR task has an impact on takeover performance, but little is known about the specific task characteristics that account for performance decrements. Thirty participants drove in a simulator using a highly automated driving system. Each participant faced five critical takeover situations. Based on assumptions of Wickens's multiple resource theory, stimulus and response modalities of a prototypical NDR task were systematically manipulated. Additionally, in one experimental group, the task was locked out simultaneously with the takeover request. Task modalities had significant effects on several measures of takeover performance. A visual-manual texting task degraded performance the most, particularly when performed handheld. In contrast, takeover performance with an auditory-vocal task was comparable to a baseline without any task. Task lockout was associated with faster hands-on-wheel times but not altered brake response times. Results showed that NDR task modalities are relevant factors for takeover performance. An NDR task lockout was highly accepted by the drivers and showed moderate benefits for the first takeover reaction. Knowledge about the impact of NDR task characteristics is an enabler for adaptive takeover concepts. In addition, it might help regulators to make decisions on allowed NDR tasks during automated driving.

  14. Optimization of automation: I. Estimation method of cognitive automation rates reflecting the effects of automation on human operators in nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Seung Min; Kim, Jong Hyun; Seong, Poong Hyun

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • We propose an estimation method of the automation rate by taking the advantages of automation as the estimation measures. • We conduct the experiments to examine the validity of the suggested method. • The higher the cognitive automation rate is, the greater the decreased rate of the working time will be. • The usefulness of the suggested estimation method is proved by statistical analyses. - Abstract: Since automation was introduced in various industrial fields, the concept of the automation rate has been used to indicate the inclusion proportion of automation among all work processes or facilities. Expressions of the inclusion proportion of automation are predictable, as is the ability to express the degree of the enhancement of human performance. However, many researchers have found that a high automation rate does not guarantee high performance. Therefore, to reflect the effects of automation on human performance, this paper proposes a new estimation method of the automation rate that considers the effects of automation on human operators in nuclear power plants (NPPs). Automation in NPPs can be divided into two types: system automation and cognitive automation. Some general descriptions and characteristics of each type of automation are provided, and the advantages of automation are investigated. The advantages of each type of automation are used as measures of the estimation method of the automation rate. One advantage was found to be a reduction in the number of tasks, and another was a reduction in human cognitive task loads. The system and the cognitive automation rate were proposed as quantitative measures by taking advantage of the aforementioned benefits. To quantify the required human cognitive task loads and thus suggest the cognitive automation rate, Conant’s information-theory-based model was applied. The validity of the suggested method, especially as regards the cognitive automation rate, was proven by conducting

  15. High throughput sample processing and automated scoring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gunnar eBrunborg

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The comet assay is a sensitive and versatile method for assessing DNA damage in cells. In the traditional version of the assay, there are many manual steps involved and few samples can be treated in one experiment. High throughput modifications have been developed during recent years, and they are reviewed and discussed. These modifications include accelerated scoring of comets; other important elements that have been studied and adapted to high throughput are cultivation and manipulation of cells or tissues before and after exposure, and freezing of treated samples until comet analysis and scoring. High throughput methods save time and money but they are useful also for other reasons: large-scale experiments may be performed which are otherwise not practicable (e.g., analysis of many organs from exposed animals, and human biomonitoring studies, and automation gives more uniform sample treatment and less dependence on operator performance. The high throughput modifications now available vary largely in their versatility, capacity, complexity and costs. The bottleneck for further increase of throughput appears to be the scoring.

  16. Effect of high frequency content of uniform hazard response spectra on nuclear power plant structures, systems and components

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Usmani, A. [Amec Foster Wheeler, Toronto, ON (Canada); Baughman, P.D. [Paul D. Baughman Consulting, Exeter, NH (United States)

    2015-07-01

    The Uniform Hazard Spectrum (UHS) is developed from a probabilistic seismic hazard assessment and represents a response spectrum for which the amplitude at each frequency has a specified and uniform (equal) probability of exceedance. The high spectral acceleration at high frequencies in the UHS can result mainly from small non-damaging low energy earthquakes. Historically Canadian and U.S. nuclear power plants have been designed using the standard shape spectrum given in CSA N289.3 or USNRC Regulatory Guide 1.60, which have maximum spectral accelerations in the lower (2-10 Hz.) frequency range. The impact of the high frequency content of UHS on the nuclear power plant SSCs is required to be assessed. This paper briefly describes the methodologies used for screening and evaluation of the effects of UHS high frequency content on the nuclear power SSCs that have been designed using the CSA N289.3 standard shape spectrum. (author)

  17. Benchmarking Ligand-Based Virtual High-Throughput Screening with the PubChem Database

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariusz Butkiewicz

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available With the rapidly increasing availability of High-Throughput Screening (HTS data in the public domain, such as the PubChem database, methods for ligand-based computer-aided drug discovery (LB-CADD have the potential to accelerate and reduce the cost of probe development and drug discovery efforts in academia. We assemble nine data sets from realistic HTS campaigns representing major families of drug target proteins for benchmarking LB-CADD methods. Each data set is public domain through PubChem and carefully collated through confirmation screens validating active compounds. These data sets provide the foundation for benchmarking a new cheminformatics framework BCL::ChemInfo, which is freely available for non-commercial use. Quantitative structure activity relationship (QSAR models are built using Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs, Support Vector Machines (SVMs, Decision Trees (DTs, and Kohonen networks (KNs. Problem-specific descriptor optimization protocols are assessed including Sequential Feature Forward Selection (SFFS and various information content measures. Measures of predictive power and confidence are evaluated through cross-validation, and a consensus prediction scheme is tested that combines orthogonal machine learning algorithms into a single predictor. Enrichments ranging from 15 to 101 for a TPR cutoff of 25% are observed.

  18. Automated Identification of Diabetic Retinopathy Using Deep Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gargeya, Rishab; Leng, Theodore

    2017-07-01

    Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is one of the leading causes of preventable blindness globally. Performing retinal screening examinations on all diabetic patients is an unmet need, and there are many undiagnosed and untreated cases of DR. The objective of this study was to develop robust diagnostic technology to automate DR screening. Referral of eyes with DR to an ophthalmologist for further evaluation and treatment would aid in reducing the rate of vision loss, enabling timely and accurate diagnoses. We developed and evaluated a data-driven deep learning algorithm as a novel diagnostic tool for automated DR detection. The algorithm processed color fundus images and classified them as healthy (no retinopathy) or having DR, identifying relevant cases for medical referral. A total of 75 137 publicly available fundus images from diabetic patients were used to train and test an artificial intelligence model to differentiate healthy fundi from those with DR. A panel of retinal specialists determined the ground truth for our data set before experimentation. We also tested our model using the public MESSIDOR 2 and E-Ophtha databases for external validation. Information learned in our automated method was visualized readily through an automatically generated abnormality heatmap, highlighting subregions within each input fundus image for further clinical review. We used area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) as a metric to measure the precision-recall trade-off of our algorithm, reporting associated sensitivity and specificity metrics on the receiver operating characteristic curve. Our model achieved a 0.97 AUC with a 94% and 98% sensitivity and specificity, respectively, on 5-fold cross-validation using our local data set. Testing against the independent MESSIDOR 2 and E-Ophtha databases achieved a 0.94 and 0.95 AUC score, respectively. A fully data-driven artificial intelligence-based grading algorithm can be used to screen fundus photographs obtained

  19. A fully automated microfluidic femtosecond laser axotomy platform for nerve regeneration studies in C. elegans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gokce, Sertan Kutal; Guo, Samuel X; Ghorashian, Navid; Everett, W Neil; Jarrell, Travis; Kottek, Aubri; Bovik, Alan C; Ben-Yakar, Adela

    2014-01-01

    Femtosecond laser nanosurgery has been widely accepted as an axonal injury model, enabling nerve regeneration studies in the small model organism, Caenorhabditis elegans. To overcome the time limitations of manual worm handling techniques, automation and new immobilization technologies must be adopted to improve throughput in these studies. While new microfluidic immobilization techniques have been developed that promise to reduce the time required for axotomies, there is a need for automated procedures to minimize the required amount of human intervention and accelerate the axotomy processes crucial for high-throughput. Here, we report a fully automated microfluidic platform for performing laser axotomies of fluorescently tagged neurons in living Caenorhabditis elegans. The presented automation process reduces the time required to perform axotomies within individual worms to ∼17 s/worm, at least one order of magnitude faster than manual approaches. The full automation is achieved with a unique chip design and an operation sequence that is fully computer controlled and synchronized with efficient and accurate image processing algorithms. The microfluidic device includes a T-shaped architecture and three-dimensional microfluidic interconnects to serially transport, position, and immobilize worms. The image processing algorithms can identify and precisely position axons targeted for ablation. There were no statistically significant differences observed in reconnection probabilities between axotomies carried out with the automated system and those performed manually with anesthetics. The overall success rate of automated axotomies was 67.4±3.2% of the cases (236/350) at an average processing rate of 17.0±2.4 s. This fully automated platform establishes a promising methodology for prospective genome-wide screening of nerve regeneration in C. elegans in a truly high-throughput manner.

  20. Non-visit-based cancer screening using a novel population management system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atlas, Steven J; Zai, Adrian H; Ashburner, Jeffrey M; Chang, Yuchiao; Percac-Lima, Sanja; Levy, Douglas E; Chueh, Henry C; Grant, Richard W

    2014-01-01

    Advances in information technology (IT) now permit population-based preventive screening, but the best methods remain uncertain. We evaluated whether involving primary care providers (PCPs) in a visit-independent population management IT application led to more effective cancer screening. We conducted a cluster-randomized trial involving 18 primary care practice sites and 169 PCPs from June 15, 2011, to June 14, 2012. Participants included adults eligible for breast, cervical, and/or colorectal cancer screening. In practices randomized to the intervention group, PCPs reviewed real-time rosters of their patients overdue for screening and provided individualized contact (via a letter, practice delegate, or patient navigator) or deferred screening (temporarily or permanently). In practices randomized to the comparison group, overdue patients were automatically sent reminder letters and transferred to practice delegate lists for follow-up. Intervention patients without PCP action within 8 weeks defaulted to the automated control version. The primary outcome was adjusted average cancer screening completion rates over 1-year follow-up, accounting for clustering by physician or practice. Baseline cancer screening rates (80.8% vs 80.3%) were similar among patients in the intervention (n = 51,071) and comparison group (n = 52,799). Most intervention providers used the IT application (88 of 101, 87%) and users reviewed 7984 patients overdue for at least 1 cancer screening (73% sent reminder letter, 6% referred directly to a practice delegate or patient navigator, and 21% deferred screening). In addition, 6128 letters were automatically sent to patients in the intervention group (total of 12,002 letters vs 16,378 letters in comparison practices; P management IT application resulted in similar cancer screening rates compared with an automated reminder system, but fewer patients were sent reminder letters. This suggests that PCPs were able to identify and exclude from contact

  1. High content analysis platform for optimization of lipid mediated CRISPR-Cas9 delivery strategies in human cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steyer, Benjamin; Carlson-Stevermer, Jared; Angenent-Mari, Nicolas; Khalil, Andrew; Harkness, Ty; Saha, Krishanu

    2016-04-01

    Non-viral gene-editing of human cells using the CRISPR-Cas9 system requires optimized delivery of multiple components. Both the Cas9 endonuclease and a single guide RNA, that defines the genomic target, need to be present and co-localized within the nucleus for efficient gene-editing to occur. This work describes a new high-throughput screening platform for the optimization of CRISPR-Cas9 delivery strategies. By exploiting high content image analysis and microcontact printed plates, multi-parametric gene-editing outcome data from hundreds to thousands of isolated cell populations can be screened simultaneously. Employing this platform, we systematically screened four commercially available cationic lipid transfection materials with a range of RNAs encoding the CRISPR-Cas9 system. Analysis of Cas9 expression and editing of a fluorescent mCherry reporter transgene within human embryonic kidney cells was monitored over several days after transfection. Design of experiments analysis enabled rigorous evaluation of delivery materials and RNA concentration conditions. The results of this analysis indicated that the concentration and identity of transfection material have significantly greater effect on gene-editing than ratio or total amount of RNA. Cell subpopulation analysis on microcontact printed plates, further revealed that low cell number and high Cas9 expression, 24h after CRISPR-Cas9 delivery, were strong predictors of gene-editing outcomes. These results suggest design principles for the development of materials and transfection strategies with lipid-based materials. This platform could be applied to rapidly optimize materials for gene-editing in a variety of cell/tissue types in order to advance genomic medicine, regenerative biology and drug discovery. CRISPR-Cas9 is a new gene-editing technology for "genome surgery" that is anticipated to treat genetic diseases. This technology uses multiple components of the Cas9 system to cut out disease-causing mutations

  2. Calcium content and high calcium adaptation of plants in karst areas of southwestern Hunan, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    X. Wei

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Rocky desertification is a major ecological problem of land degradation in karst areas. In these areas, the high soil calcium (Ca content has become an important environmental factor that can affect the restoration of vegetation. Consequently, the screening of plant species that can adapt to high Ca soil environments is a critical step in vegetation restoration. In this study, three grades of rocky desertification sample areas were selected in karst areas of southwestern Hunan, China (LRD: light rocky desertification; MRD: moderate rocky desertification; and IRD: intense rocky desertification. Each grade of these sample areas had three sample plots in different slope positions, each of which had four small quadrats (one in rocky-side areas, three in non-rocky-side areas. We measured the Ca content of leaves, branches, and roots from 41 plant species, as well as soil total Ca (TCa and exchangeable Ca (ECa at depths of 0–15, 15–30, and 30–45 cm in each small quadrat. The results showed that the soil Ca2+ content in rocky-side areas was significantly higher than that in non-rocky-side areas (p < 0.05. The mean soil TCa and ECa content increased gradually along with the grade of rocky desertification, in the order IRD > MRD > LRD. For all plant functional groups, the plant Ca content of aboveground parts was significantly higher than that of the belowground parts (p < 0.05. The soil ECa content had significant effects on plant Ca content of the belowground parts but had no significant effects on plant Ca content of the aboveground parts. Of the 41 plant species that were sampled, 17 were found to be dominant (important value > 1. The differences in Ca2+ content between the aboveground and belowground parts of the 17 dominant species were calculated, and their correlations with soil ECa content were analyzed. The results showed that these 17 species can be divided into three categories: Ca-indifferent plants, high

  3. Critical Evaluation of Native Electrospray Ionization Mass Spectrometry for Fragment-Based Screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Göth, Melanie; Badock, Volker; Weiske, Jörg; Pagel, Kevin; Kuropka, Benno

    2017-08-08

    Fragment-based screening presents a promising alternative to high-throughput screening and has gained great attention in recent years. So far, only a few studies have discussed mass spectrometry as a screening technology for fragments. Herein, we report the application of native electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (MS) for screening defined sets of fragments against four different target proteins. Fragments were selected from a primary screening conducted with a thermal shift assay (TSA) and represented different binding categories. Our data indicated that, beside specific complex formation, many fragments show extensive multiple binding and also charge-state shifts. Both of these factors complicate automated data analysis and decrease the attractiveness of native MS as a primary screening tool for fragments. A comparison of the hits identified by native MS and TSA showed good agreement for two of the proteins. Furthermore, we discuss general challenges, including the determination of an optimal fragment concentration and the question of how to rank fragment hits according to their affinity. In conclusion, we consider native MS to be a highly valuable tool for the validation and deeper investigation of promising fragment hits rather than a method for primary screening. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  4. MRI screening for breast cancer in women at high risk; is the Australian breast MRI screening access program addressing the needs of women at high risk of breast cancer?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schenberg, Tess [Department of Medical Oncology, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Melbourne, Victoria (Australia); Familial Cancer Centre, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Melbourne, Victoria (Australia); Mitchell, Gillian [Familial Cancer Centre, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Melbourne, Victoria (Australia); Sir Peter MacCallum Department of Oncology, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria (Australia); Taylor, Donna [School of Surgery, University of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia (Australia); Department of Radiology, Royal Perth Hospital, Perth, Western Australia (Australia); BreastScreen Western Australia, Adelaide Terrace, Perth, Western Australia (Australia); Saunders, Christobel [School of Surgery, University of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia (Australia); Department of General Surgery, St John of God Hospital, Perth, Western Australia (Australia); Department of Medical Oncology, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Melbourne, Victoria (Australia)

    2015-09-15

    Breast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) screening of women under 50 years old at high familial risk of breast cancer was given interim funding by Medicare in 2009 on the basis that a review would be undertaken. An updated literature review has been undertaken by the Medical Services Advisory Committee but there has been no assessment of the quality of the screening or other screening outcomes. This review examines the evidence basis of breast MRI screening and how this fits within an Australian context with the purpose of informing future modifications to the provision of Medicare-funded breast MRI screening in Australia. Issues discussed will include selection of high-risk women, the options for MRI screening frequency and measuring the outcomes of screening.

  5. MRI screening for breast cancer in women at high risk; is the Australian breast MRI screening access program addressing the needs of women at high risk of breast cancer?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schenberg, Tess; Mitchell, Gillian; Taylor, Donna; Saunders, Christobel

    2015-01-01

    Breast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) screening of women under 50 years old at high familial risk of breast cancer was given interim funding by Medicare in 2009 on the basis that a review would be undertaken. An updated literature review has been undertaken by the Medical Services Advisory Committee but there has been no assessment of the quality of the screening or other screening outcomes. This review examines the evidence basis of breast MRI screening and how this fits within an Australian context with the purpose of informing future modifications to the provision of Medicare-funded breast MRI screening in Australia. Issues discussed will include selection of high-risk women, the options for MRI screening frequency and measuring the outcomes of screening

  6. The NIF DISCO Framework: facilitating automated integration of neuroscience content on the web.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marenco, Luis; Wang, Rixin; Shepherd, Gordon M; Miller, Perry L

    2010-06-01

    This paper describes the capabilities of DISCO, an extensible approach that supports integrative Web-based information dissemination. DISCO is a component of the Neuroscience Information Framework (NIF), an NIH Neuroscience Blueprint initiative that facilitates integrated access to diverse neuroscience resources via the Internet. DISCO facilitates the automated maintenance of several distinct capabilities using a collection of files 1) that are maintained locally by the developers of participating neuroscience resources and 2) that are "harvested" on a regular basis by a central DISCO server. This approach allows central NIF capabilities to be updated as each resource's content changes over time. DISCO currently supports the following capabilities: 1) resource descriptions, 2) "LinkOut" to a resource's data items from NCBI Entrez resources such as PubMed, 3) Web-based interoperation with a resource, 4) sharing a resource's lexicon and ontology, 5) sharing a resource's database schema, and 6) participation by the resource in neuroscience-related RSS news dissemination. The developers of a resource are free to choose which DISCO capabilities their resource will participate in. Although DISCO is used by NIF to facilitate neuroscience data integration, its capabilities have general applicability to other areas of research.

  7. Testing the tests--an empirical evaluation of screening tests for the detection of cognitive impairment in aviators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stokes, A F; Banich, M T; Elledge, V C

    1991-08-01

    The FAA has expressed concern that flight safety could be compromised by undetected cognitive impairment in pilots due to conditions such as substance abuse, mental illness, and neuropsychological problems. Interest has been shown in the possibility of adding a brief "mini-mental exam," or a simple automated test-battery to the standard flight medical to screen for such conditions. The research reported here involved the empirical evaluation of two "mini-mental exams," two paper-and-pencil test batteries, and a prototype version of an automated screening battery. Sensitivity, specificity, and positive predictive value were calculated for each sub-task in a discriminant study of 54 pilots and 62 individuals from a heterogeneous clinical population. Results suggest that the "mini-mental exams" are poor candidates for a screening test. The automated battery showed the best discrimination performance, in part because of the incorporation of dual-task tests of divided attention performance. These tests appear to be particularly sensitive to otherwise difficult-to-detect cognitive impairments of a mild or subtle nature. The use of an automated battery of tests as a screening instrument does appear to be feasible in principle, but the practical success of a screening program is heavily dependent upon the actual prevalence of cognitive impairment in the medical applicant population.

  8. Screening halogenated environmental contaminants in biota based on isotopic pattern and mass defect provided by high resolution mass spectrometry profiling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cariou, Ronan; Omer, Elsa; Léon, Alexis; Dervilly-Pinel, Gaud; Le Bizec, Bruno

    2016-01-01

    In the present work, we addressed the question of global seeking/screening organohalogenated compounds in a large panel of complex biological matrices, with a particular focus on unknown chemicals that may be considered as potential emerging hazards. A fishing strategy was developed based on untargeted profiling among full scan acquisition datasets provided by high resolution mass spectrometry. Since large datasets arise from such profiling, filtering useful information stands as a central question. In this way, we took advantage of the exact mass differences between Cl and Br isotopes. Indeed, our workflow involved an innovative Visual Basic for Applications script aiming at pairing features according to this mass difference, in order to point out potential organohalogenated clusters, preceded by an automated peak picking step based on the centWave function (xcms package of open access R programming environment). Then, H/Cl-scale mass defect plots were used to visualize the datasets before and after filtering. The filtering script was successfully applied to a dataset generated upon liquid chromatography coupled to ESI(−)-HRMS measurement from one eel muscle extract, allowing for realistic manual investigations of filtered clusters. Starting from 9789 initial obtained features, 1994 features were paired in 589 clusters. Hexabromocyclododecane, chlorinated paraffin series and various other compounds have been identified or tentatively identified, allowing thus broad screening of organohalogenated compounds in this extract. Although realistic, manual review of paired clusters remains time consuming and much effort should be devoted to automation. - Highlights: • We address the screening of halogenated compounds in large Full Scan HRMS datasets. • The workflow involves peak picking, pairing script and review of paired features. • The pairing script is based on exact mass differences between Cl and Br isotopes. • H/Cl scale mass defect plots are used to

  9. Screening halogenated environmental contaminants in biota based on isotopic pattern and mass defect provided by high resolution mass spectrometry profiling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cariou, Ronan, E-mail: laberca@oniris-nantes.fr; Omer, Elsa; Léon, Alexis; Dervilly-Pinel, Gaud; Le Bizec, Bruno

    2016-09-14

    In the present work, we addressed the question of global seeking/screening organohalogenated compounds in a large panel of complex biological matrices, with a particular focus on unknown chemicals that may be considered as potential emerging hazards. A fishing strategy was developed based on untargeted profiling among full scan acquisition datasets provided by high resolution mass spectrometry. Since large datasets arise from such profiling, filtering useful information stands as a central question. In this way, we took advantage of the exact mass differences between Cl and Br isotopes. Indeed, our workflow involved an innovative Visual Basic for Applications script aiming at pairing features according to this mass difference, in order to point out potential organohalogenated clusters, preceded by an automated peak picking step based on the centWave function (xcms package of open access R programming environment). Then, H/Cl-scale mass defect plots were used to visualize the datasets before and after filtering. The filtering script was successfully applied to a dataset generated upon liquid chromatography coupled to ESI(−)-HRMS measurement from one eel muscle extract, allowing for realistic manual investigations of filtered clusters. Starting from 9789 initial obtained features, 1994 features were paired in 589 clusters. Hexabromocyclododecane, chlorinated paraffin series and various other compounds have been identified or tentatively identified, allowing thus broad screening of organohalogenated compounds in this extract. Although realistic, manual review of paired clusters remains time consuming and much effort should be devoted to automation. - Highlights: • We address the screening of halogenated compounds in large Full Scan HRMS datasets. • The workflow involves peak picking, pairing script and review of paired features. • The pairing script is based on exact mass differences between Cl and Br isotopes. • H/Cl scale mass defect plots are used to

  10. Automatic detection of retinal anatomy to assist diabetic retinopathy screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleming, Alan D.; Goatman, Keith A.; Philip, Sam; Olson, John A.; Sharp, Peter F.

    2007-01-01

    Screening programmes for diabetic retinopathy are being introduced in the United Kingdom and elsewhere. These require large numbers of retinal images to be manually graded for the presence of disease. Automation of image grading would have a number of benefits. However, an important prerequisite for automation is the accurate location of the main anatomical features in the image, notably the optic disc and the fovea. The locations of these features are necessary so that lesion significance, image field of view and image clarity can be assessed. This paper describes methods for the robust location of the optic disc and fovea. The elliptical form of the major retinal blood vessels is used to obtain approximate locations, which are refined based on the circular edge of the optic disc and the local darkening at the fovea. The methods have been tested on 1056 sequential images from a retinal screening programme. Positional accuracy was better than 0.5 of a disc diameter in 98.4% of cases for optic disc location, and in 96.5% of cases for fovea location. The methods are sufficiently accurate to form an important and effective component of an automated image grading system for diabetic retinopathy screening.

  11. Automatic detection of retinal anatomy to assist diabetic retinopathy screening

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fleming, Alan D [Biomedical Physics, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, AB25 2ZD (United Kingdom); Goatman, Keith A [Biomedical Physics, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, AB25 2ZD (United Kingdom); Philip, Sam [Grampian Diabetes Retinal Screening Programme, Woolmanhill Hospital, Aberdeen, AB25 1LD (United Kingdom); Olson, John A [Grampian Diabetes Retinal Screening Programme, Woolmanhill Hospital, Aberdeen, AB25 1LD (United Kingdom); Sharp, Peter F [Biomedical Physics, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, AB25 2ZD (United Kingdom)

    2007-01-21

    Screening programmes for diabetic retinopathy are being introduced in the United Kingdom and elsewhere. These require large numbers of retinal images to be manually graded for the presence of disease. Automation of image grading would have a number of benefits. However, an important prerequisite for automation is the accurate location of the main anatomical features in the image, notably the optic disc and the fovea. The locations of these features are necessary so that lesion significance, image field of view and image clarity can be assessed. This paper describes methods for the robust location of the optic disc and fovea. The elliptical form of the major retinal blood vessels is used to obtain approximate locations, which are refined based on the circular edge of the optic disc and the local darkening at the fovea. The methods have been tested on 1056 sequential images from a retinal screening programme. Positional accuracy was better than 0.5 of a disc diameter in 98.4% of cases for optic disc location, and in 96.5% of cases for fovea location. The methods are sufficiently accurate to form an important and effective component of an automated image grading system for diabetic retinopathy screening.

  12. Automatic detection of retinal anatomy to assist diabetic retinopathy screening

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fleming, Alan D; Goatman, Keith A; Philip, Sam; Olson, John A; Sharp, Peter F

    2007-01-01

    Screening programmes for diabetic retinopathy are being introduced in the United Kingdom and elsewhere. These require large numbers of retinal images to be manually graded for the presence of disease. Automation of image grading would have a number of benefits. However, an important prerequisite for automation is the accurate location of the main anatomical features in the image, notably the optic disc and the fovea. The locations of these features are necessary so that lesion significance, image field of view and image clarity can be assessed. This paper describes methods for the robust location of the optic disc and fovea. The elliptical form of the major retinal blood vessels is used to obtain approximate locations, which are refined based on the circular edge of the optic disc and the local darkening at the fovea. The methods have been tested on 1056 sequential images from a retinal screening programme. Positional accuracy was better than 0.5 of a disc diameter in 98.4% of cases for optic disc location, and in 96.5% of cases for fovea location. The methods are sufficiently accurate to form an important and effective component of an automated image grading system for diabetic retinopathy screening

  13. Automatic detection of retinal anatomy to assist diabetic retinopathy screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleming, Alan D; Goatman, Keith A; Philip, Sam; Olson, John A; Sharp, Peter F

    2007-01-21

    Screening programmes for diabetic retinopathy are being introduced in the United Kingdom and elsewhere. These require large numbers of retinal images to be manually graded for the presence of disease. Automation of image grading would have a number of benefits. However, an important prerequisite for automation is the accurate location of the main anatomical features in the image, notably the optic disc and the fovea. The locations of these features are necessary so that lesion significance, image field of view and image clarity can be assessed. This paper describes methods for the robust location of the optic disc and fovea. The elliptical form of the major retinal blood vessels is used to obtain approximate locations, which are refined based on the circular edge of the optic disc and the local darkening at the fovea. The methods have been tested on 1056 sequential images from a retinal screening programme. Positional accuracy was better than 0.5 of a disc diameter in 98.4% of cases for optic disc location, and in 96.5% of cases for fovea location. The methods are sufficiently accurate to form an important and effective component of an automated image grading system for diabetic retinopathy screening.

  14. Detection and quantification of intracellular bacterial colonies by automated, high-throughput microscopy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ernstsen, Christina L; Login, Frédéric H; Jensen, Helene H

    2017-01-01

    To target bacterial pathogens that invade and proliferate inside host cells, it is necessary to design intervention strategies directed against bacterial attachment, cellular invasion and intracellular proliferation. We present an automated microscopy-based, fast, high-throughput method for analy...

  15. Supporting Control Room Operators in Highly Automated Future Power Networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chen, Minjiang; Catterson, Victoria; Syed, Mazheruddin

    2017-01-01

    Operating power systems is an extremely challenging task, not least because power systems have become highly interconnected, as well as the range of network issues that can occur. It is therefore a necessity to develop decision support systems and visualisation that can effectively support the hu...... the human operators for decisionmaking in the complex and dynamic environment of future highly automated power system. This paper aims to investigate the decision support functions associated with frequency deviation events for the proposed Web of Cells concept....

  16. Launch Control System Software Development System Automation Testing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Andrew

    2017-01-01

    The Spaceport Command and Control System (SCCS) is the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) launch control system for the Orion capsule and Space Launch System, the next generation manned rocket currently in development. This system requires high quality testing that will measure and test the capabilities of the system. For the past two years, the Exploration and Operations Division at Kennedy Space Center (KSC) has assigned a group including interns and full-time engineers to develop automated tests to save the project time and money. The team worked on automating the testing process for the SCCS GUI that would use streamed simulated data from the testing servers to produce data, plots, statuses, etc. to the GUI. The software used to develop automated tests included an automated testing framework and an automation library. The automated testing framework has a tabular-style syntax, which means the functionality of a line of code must have the appropriate number of tabs for the line to function as intended. The header section contains either paths to custom resources or the names of libraries being used. The automation library contains functionality to automate anything that appears on a desired screen with the use of image recognition software to detect and control GUI components. The data section contains any data values strictly created for the current testing file. The body section holds the tests that are being run. The function section can include any number of functions that may be used by the current testing file or any other file that resources it. The resources and body section are required for all test files; the data and function sections can be left empty if the data values and functions being used are from a resourced library or another file. To help equip the automation team with better tools, the Project Lead of the Automated Testing Team, Jason Kapusta, assigned the task to install and train an optical character recognition (OCR

  17. Applicability Of A Semi-Automated Clinical Chemistry Analyzer In Determining The Antioxidant Concentrations Of Selected Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allan L. Hilario

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Plants are rich sources of antioxidants that are protective against diseases associated to oxidative stress. There is a need for high throughput screening method that should be useful in determining the antioxidant concentration in plants. Such screening method should significantly simplify and speed up most antioxidant assays. This paper aimed at comparing the applicability of a semi-automated clinical chemistry analyzer Pointe Scientific MI USA with the traditional standard curve method and using a Vis spectrophotometer in performing the DPPH assay for antioxidant screening. Samples of crude aqueous leaf extract of kulitis Amaranthus viridis Linn and chayote Sechium edule Linn were screened for the Total Antioxidant Concentration TAC using the two methods. Results presented in mean SD amp956gdl were compared using unpaired Students t-test P0.05. All runs were done in triplicates. The mean TAC of A. viridis was 646.0 45.5 amp956gdl using the clinical chemistry analyzer and 581.9 19.4 amp956gdl using the standard curve-spectrophotometer. On the other hand the mean TAC of S. edule was 660.2 35.9 amp956gdl using the semi-automated clinical chemistry analyzer and 672.3 20.9 amp956gdl using the spectrophotometer. No significant differences were observed between the readings of the two methods for A. viridis P0.05 and S. edible P0.05. This implies that the clinical chemistry analyzer can be an alternative method in conducting the DPPH assay to determine the TAC in plants. This study presented the applicability of a semi-automated clinical chemistry analyzer in performing the DPPH assay. Further validation can be conducted by performing other antioxidant assays using this equipment.