WorldWideScience

Sample records for biological assessment

  1. Biology Reflective Assessment Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bayley, Cheryl Ann

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

  2. Biological Environmental Sampling Technologies Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-12-01

    modular set of aerosol detector, collector, and identifier components. Before the award, the JBTDS program office engaged its combat developers and...collection and identification processes are not integrated into one unit. Concern was also expressed regarding operation of the smartphone -based Biomeme one3...DESCRIPTION (JBTDS) The Joint Biological Tactical Detection System (JBTDS) will be employed as a modular set of capabilities (detector, collector, and

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  4. Skill Assessment in Ocean Biological Data Assimilation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregg, Watson W.; Friedrichs, Marjorie A. M.; Robinson, Allan R.; Rose, Kenneth A.; Schlitzer, Reiner; Thompson, Keith R.; Doney, Scott C.

    2008-01-01

    There is growing recognition that rigorous skill assessment is required to understand the ability of ocean biological models to represent ocean processes and distributions. Statistical analysis of model results with observations represents the most quantitative form of skill assessment, and this principle serves as well for data assimilation models. However, skill assessment for data assimilation requires special consideration. This is because there are three sets of information in the free-run model, data, and the assimilation model, which uses Data assimilation information from both the flee-run model and the data. Intercom parison of results among the three sets of information is important and useful for assessment, but is not conclusive since the three information sets are intertwined. An independent data set is necessary for an objective determination. Other useful measures of ocean biological data assimilation assessment include responses of unassimilated variables to the data assimilation, performance outside the prescribed region/time of interest, forecasting, and trend analysis. Examples of each approach from the literature are provided. A comprehensive list of ocean biological data assimilation and their applications of skill assessment, in both ecosystem/biogeochemical and fisheries efforts, is summarized.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-03-02

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

  6. Synthetic biology ethics: a deontological assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heavey, Patrick

    2013-10-01

    In this article I discuss the ethics of synthetic biology from a broadly deontological perspective, evaluating its morality in terms of the integrity of nature, the dignity of life and the relationship between God and his creation. Most ethical analyses to date have been largely consequentialist in nature; they reveal a dual use dilemma, showing that synbio has potential for great good and great evil, possibly more so than any step humanity has taken before. A deontological analysis may help to resolve this dilemma, by evaluating whether synbio is right or wrong in itself. I also assess whether deontology alone is a sufficient methodological paradigm for the proper evaluation of synbio ethics. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  7. Assessment procedures results of training in biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena A. Galkina

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The article describes the procedures for evaluating the results of training in biology. The mechanisms for monitoring the learning outcomes of a biology teacher are presented. Examples of algorithms for procedures for evaluating learning outcomes in biology are demonstrated.

  8. Assessing Probabilistic Risk Assessment Approaches for Insect Biological Control Introductions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufman, Leyla V; Wright, Mark G

    2017-07-07

    The introduction of biological control agents to new environments requires host specificity tests to estimate potential non-target impacts of a prospective agent. Currently, the approach is conservative, and is based on physiological host ranges determined under captive rearing conditions, without consideration for ecological factors that may influence realized host range. We use historical data and current field data from introduced parasitoids that attack an endemic Lepidoptera species in Hawaii to validate a probabilistic risk assessment (PRA) procedure for non-target impacts. We use data on known host range and habitat use in the place of origin of the parasitoids to determine whether contemporary levels of non-target parasitism could have been predicted using PRA. Our results show that reasonable predictions of potential non-target impacts may be made if comprehensive data are available from places of origin of biological control agents, but scant data produce poor predictions. Using apparent mortality data rather than marginal attack rate estimates in PRA resulted in over-estimates of predicted non-target impact. Incorporating ecological data into PRA models improved the predictive power of the risk assessments.

  9. Assessing Probabilistic Risk Assessment Approaches for Insect Biological Control Introductions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leyla V. Kaufman

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The introduction of biological control agents to new environments requires host specificity tests to estimate potential non-target impacts of a prospective agent. Currently, the approach is conservative, and is based on physiological host ranges determined under captive rearing conditions, without consideration for ecological factors that may influence realized host range. We use historical data and current field data from introduced parasitoids that attack an endemic Lepidoptera species in Hawaii to validate a probabilistic risk assessment (PRA procedure for non-target impacts. We use data on known host range and habitat use in the place of origin of the parasitoids to determine whether contemporary levels of non-target parasitism could have been predicted using PRA. Our results show that reasonable predictions of potential non-target impacts may be made if comprehensive data are available from places of origin of biological control agents, but scant data produce poor predictions. Using apparent mortality data rather than marginal attack rate estimates in PRA resulted in over-estimates of predicted non-target impact. Incorporating ecological data into PRA models improved the predictive power of the risk assessments.

  10. Assessment of variable application rates of biological amendment ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Assessment of variable application rates of biological amendment substances on establishment and growth characteristics of maize plants. ... Hence, a greenhouse experiment was conducted in 2008 to assess the effects of variable rates (50, 75 and 100% of the recommended rates) of industrial manufactured biological ...

  11. A Diagnostic Assessment for Introductory Molecular and Cell Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-01-01

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

  12. Mathematical modeling in biology: A critical assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    1998-01-01

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

  13. Mathematical modeling in biology: A critical assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buiatti, M.

    1998-01-01

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

  14. Scientific Opinion on Risk Assessment of Synthetic Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epstein, Michelle M; Vermeire, Theo

    2016-08-01

    In 2013, three Scientific Committees of the European Commission (EC) drafted Scientific Opinions on synthetic biology that provide an operational definition and address risk assessment methodology, safety aspects, environmental risks, knowledge gaps, and research priorities. These Opinions contribute to the international discussions on the risk governance for synthetic biology developments. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Bigheaded carps : a biological synopsis and environmental risk assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolar, Cindy S.; Chapman, Duane C.; Courtenay, Walter R.; Housel, Christine M.; Williams, James D.; Jennings, Dawn P.

    2007-01-01

    The book is a detailed risk assessment and biological synopsis of the bigheaded carps of the genus Hypophthalmichthys, which includes the bighead, silver, and largescale silver carps. It summarizes the scientific literature describing their biology, ecology, uses, ecological effects, and risks to the environment.

  16. The biological basis for environmental quality assessments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karpov, V.I.; Kudritsky, Y.K.; Georgievsky, A.B.

    1991-01-01

    A systematic approach is required to environmental quality assessments with regard to the Baltic regions in order to address the problem of pollution abatement. The proposed systematization of adaptive states stems from the general theory of adaptation. The various types of adaption are described. (AB)

  17. Assessment of a biological in situ remediation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wuerdemann, H.; Lund, N.C.; Gudehus, G.

    1995-01-01

    A field experiment using a bioventing technique has been conducted at the center of contamination at a former gasworks site for 3 years. The emphasis of this investigation is to determine the efficiency of in situ remediation. Due to an extremely heterogeneous distribution of contamination it was impossible to satisfactorily quantify the reduction of hydrocarbons. However, a comparison of highly contaminated soil samples shows a qualitative alteration. The analyses of pollutant composition reveal a significant decrease of low condensed PAHs up to anthracene. The relative increase of high condensed PAHs in the contaminant composition indicates a PAH degradation of 54%. Soil respiration is used to assess the course of remediation. Continuous monitoring of O 2 and CO 2 in the used air leads to an amount of about 2,400 kg of decomposed organics. Large-scale elution tests show a reduction of the sum parameters for the organic pollution of the flushing water of 80%. The PAHs have dropped about 97%. The Microtox test indicates a detoxification of 98%

  18. Assessing Probabilistic Risk Assessment Approaches for Insect Biological Control Introductions

    OpenAIRE

    Kaufman, Leyla V.; Wright, Mark G.

    2017-01-01

    The introduction of biological control agents to new environments requires host specificity tests to estimate potential non-target impacts of a prospective agent. Currently, the approach is conservative, and is based on physiological host ranges determined under captive rearing conditions, without consideration for ecological factors that may influence realized host range. We use historical data and current field data from introduced parasitoids that attack an endemic Lepidoptera species in H...

  19. Biological methods used to assess surface water quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Szczerbiñska Natalia

    2015-12-01

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

  20. Biological dosimetry: chromosomal aberration analysis for dose assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1986-01-01

    In view of the growing importance of chromosomal aberration analysis as a biological dosimeter, the present report provides a concise summary of the scientific background of the subject and a comprehensive source of information at the technical level. After a review of the basic principles of radiation dosimetry and radiation biology basic information on the biology of lymphocytes, the structure of chromosomes and the classification of chromosomal aberrations are presented. This is followed by a presentation of techniques for collecting blood, storing, transporting, culturing, making chromosomal preparations and scaring of aberrations. The physical and statistical parameters involved in dose assessment are discussed and examples of actual dose assessments taken from the scientific literature are given

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bramwell-Lalor, Sharon; Rainford, Marcia

    2015-01-01

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

  2. WORKSHOP ON APPLICATION OF STATISTICAL METHODS TO BIOLOGICALLY-BASED PHARMACOKINETIC MODELING FOR RISK ASSESSMENT

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biologically-based pharmacokinetic models are being increasingly used in the risk assessment of environmental chemicals. These models are based on biological, mathematical, statistical and engineering principles. Their potential uses in risk assessment include extrapolation betwe...

  3. Assessing Student Behaviors and Motivation for Actively Learning Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Michael Edward

    Vision and Change states that one of the major changes in the way we design biology courses should be a switch in approach from teacher-centered learning to student-centered learning and identifies active learning as a recommended methods. Studies show performance benefits for students taking courses that use active learning. What is unknown is why active learning is such an effective instructional tool and the limits of this instructional method’s ability to influence performance. This dissertation builds a case in three steps for why active learning is an effective instructional tool. In step one, I assessed the influence of different types of active learning (clickers, group activities, and whole class discussions) on student engagement behavior in one semester of two different introductory biology courses and found that active learning positively influenced student engagement behavior significantly more than lecture. For step two, I examined over four semesters whether student engagement behavior was a predictor of performance and found participation (engagement behavior) in the online (video watching) and in-class course activities (clicker participation) that I measure were significant predictors of performance. In the third, I assessed whether certain active learning satisfied the psychological needs that lead to students’ intrinsic motivation to participate in those activities when compared over two semesters and across two different institutions of higher learning. Findings from this last step show us that student’s perceptions of autonomy, competency, and relatedness in doing various types of active learning are significantly higher than lecture and consistent across two institutions of higher learning. Lastly, I tie everything together, discuss implications of the research, and address future directions for research on biology student motivation and behavior.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2008-02-04

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2007-04-01

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

  6. Biological indicators for the assessment of a radiation exposure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feinendegen, L.E.

    1980-01-01

    Measurement of the incidence of chromosomal aberrations in the peripheral lymphocytes, though a useful method of biological dosimetry, is techious, difficult to carry out, and time-consuming. It is most appropriate for an assessment of the probability of late damage of low doses up to 20 rad. The many attempts at using biochemical indicators for the absorbed dose have not had satisfactory results so far. Morphological changes especially of the peripheral blood cells and bone narrow cells are a sure sign of a radiolesion. However, there is the problem of quantitative measurement of these processes which has made it impossible so far to elaborate a useful biological dosimetry on this basis. Apart from the analysis of peripheral lymphocytes and leucocythes, there are three new approaches of potential value: 1. Analysis of up to 19 clinical and chemical parameters of the blood serum, - it gives a rough estimate of the probability of lethality of high prognostic value. 2. Observation of the peripheral reticulocyte count - a quick and rather uncomplicated method that does not require specific laboratories. 3. Measurement of the rate of incorporation of labelled iododeoxyuridine in bone narrow cells of radiation-exposed persons or in cell cultures in a medium containing serum of radiation-exposed persons; this method appears promising for the narrow dose range and also raises same questions concerning basic research into intercellular signal substances. (orig./MG) [de

  7. Assessment of biological leaf tissue using biospeckle laser imaging technique

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ansari, M. Z.; Mujeeb, A.; Nirala, A. K.

    2018-06-01

    We report on the application of an optical imaging technique, the biospeckle laser, as a potential tool to assess biological and medicinal plant leaves. The biospeckle laser technique is a non-invasive and non-destructive optical technique used to investigate biological objects. Just after their removal from plants, the torn leaves were used for biospeckle laser imaging. Quantitative evaluation of the biospeckle data using the inertia moment (IM) of the time history speckle pattern, showed that the IM can be utilized to provide a biospeckle signature to the plant leaves. It showed that leaves from different plants can have their own characteristic IM values. We further investigated the infected regions of the leaves that display a relatively lower biospeckle activity than the healthy tissue. It was easy to discriminate between the infected and healthy regions of the leaf tissue. The biospeckle technique can successfully be implemented as a potential tool for the taxonomy of quality leaves. Furthermore, the technique can help boost the quality of ayurvedic medicines.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pryakhin, E.A.; Tryapitsina, G.A.; Urutskoyev, L.I.; Akleyev, A.V.

    2006-01-01

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

  9. Can mixed assessment methods make biology classes more equitable?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cotner, Sehoya; Ballen, Cissy J

    2017-01-01

    Many factors have been proposed to explain the attrition of women in science, technology, engineering and math fields, among them the lower performance of women in introductory courses resulting from deficits in incoming preparation. We focus on the impact of mixed methods of assessment, which minimizes the impact of high-stakes exams and rewards other methods of assessment such as group participation, low-stakes quizzes and assignments, and in-class activities. We hypothesized that these mixed methods would benefit individuals who otherwise underperform on high-stakes tests. Here, we analyze gender-based performance trends in nine large (N > 1000 students) introductory biology courses in fall 2016. Females underperformed on exams compared to their male counterparts, a difference that does not exist with other methods of assessment that compose course grade. Further, we analyzed three case studies of courses that transitioned their grading schemes to either de-emphasize or emphasize exams as a proportion of total course grade. We demonstrate that the shift away from an exam emphasis consequently benefits female students, thereby closing gaps in overall performance. Further, the exam performance gap itself is reduced when the exams contribute less to overall course grade. We discuss testable predictions that follow from our hypothesis, and advocate for the use of mixed methods of assessments (possibly as part of an overall shift to active learning techniques). We conclude by challenging the student deficit model, and suggest a course deficit model as explanatory of these performance gaps, whereby the microclimate of the classroom can either raise or lower barriers to success for underrepresented groups in STEM.

  10. Can mixed assessment methods make biology classes more equitable?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sehoya Cotner

    Full Text Available Many factors have been proposed to explain the attrition of women in science, technology, engineering and math fields, among them the lower performance of women in introductory courses resulting from deficits in incoming preparation. We focus on the impact of mixed methods of assessment, which minimizes the impact of high-stakes exams and rewards other methods of assessment such as group participation, low-stakes quizzes and assignments, and in-class activities. We hypothesized that these mixed methods would benefit individuals who otherwise underperform on high-stakes tests. Here, we analyze gender-based performance trends in nine large (N > 1000 students introductory biology courses in fall 2016. Females underperformed on exams compared to their male counterparts, a difference that does not exist with other methods of assessment that compose course grade. Further, we analyzed three case studies of courses that transitioned their grading schemes to either de-emphasize or emphasize exams as a proportion of total course grade. We demonstrate that the shift away from an exam emphasis consequently benefits female students, thereby closing gaps in overall performance. Further, the exam performance gap itself is reduced when the exams contribute less to overall course grade. We discuss testable predictions that follow from our hypothesis, and advocate for the use of mixed methods of assessments (possibly as part of an overall shift to active learning techniques. We conclude by challenging the student deficit model, and suggest a course deficit model as explanatory of these performance gaps, whereby the microclimate of the classroom can either raise or lower barriers to success for underrepresented groups in STEM.

  11. Baseline requirements for assessment of mining impact using biological monitoring

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Humphrey, C.L.; Dostine, P.L.

    1995-01-01

    Biological monitoring programmes for environmental protection should provide for both early detection of possible adverse effects, and assessment of the ecological significance of these effects. Monitoring techniques are required that include responses sensitive to the impact, that can be subjected to rigorous statistical analysis and for which statistical power is high. Such issues in baseline research of 'what and how to measure?' and 'for how long?' have been the focus of a programme being developed to monitor and assess effects of mining operations on the essentially pristine, freshwater ecosystems of the Alligator Rivers Region (ARR) in tropical northern Australia. Application of the BACIP (Before, After, Control, Impact, Paired differences) design, utilizing a form of temporal replication, to univariate (single species) and multivariate (community) data is described. The BACIP design incorporates data from single control and impact sites. We argue for modification of the design for particular studies conducted in streams, to incorporate additional independent control sites from adjacent catchment. Inferential power, by way of (i) more confidently attributing cause to an observed change and (ii) providing information about the ecological significance of the change, will be enhanced using a modified BACIP design. In highly valued environments such as the ARR, monitoring programmes require application of statistical tests with high power to guarantee that an impact no greater than a prescribed amount has gone undetected. A minimum number of baseline years using the BACIP approach would therefore be required in order to achieve some desired level of statistical power. This paper describes the results of power analyses conducted on 2-5 years (depending upon the technique) of baseline data from streams of the ARR and discuss the implications of these results for management. 44 refs., 1 tab., 3 figs

  12. Methods for isolation and viability assessment of biological organisms

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-02-03

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

  13. Techniques to assess biological variation in destructive data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tijskens, L.M.M.; Schouten, R.E.; Jongbloed, G.; Konopacki, P.J.

    2018-01-01

    Variation is present in all measured data, due to variation between individuals (biological variation) and variation induced by the measuring system (technical variation). Biological variation present in experimental data is not the result of a random process but strictly subject to deterministic

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-07-08

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

  15. Biological dose assessment of 15 victims in Haerbin radiation accident

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, Jian-xiang; Huang, Min-yan; Ruan, Jian-lei; Bai, Yu-shu; Xu, Su

    2008-01-01

    unstable aberrations were analyzed and biological dose was assessed according to the dose-effect curves built by our lab member. For micronucleus analysis, blood were added cytochalasin-B after culturing 40 hours. The doses were assessed according to the dose-effect curves built by our lab member. According to a human lymphocyte chromosome aberration and micronucleus analysis, the estimated maximum irradiation dose of 3 exposed patients is lower than 2 Gy, equal to the dose of once uneven total-body irradiation. In vitro dose-response calibration curves for (60)Co gamma rays have been established for unstable chromosome aberrations in human peripheral blood lymphocytes. The observed dose-response data were fitted to a linear quadratic model. The calibration curve parameters were used to estimate the equivalent whole-body dose and dose to the irradiated region in partial body irradiation of cancer patients. The derived partial body doses and fractions of lymphocytes irradiated were in agreement with those estimated from the radiotherapy regimes. (author)

  16. 77 FR 46373 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Hemlock Woolly...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-08-03

    ...] Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Hemlock Woolly Adelgid AGENCY... States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of hemlock woolly adelgid... beetle from the western United States, into the eastern United States for use as a biological control...

  17. 75 FR 28232 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Hemlock Woolly...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-20

    ...] Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Hemlock Woolly Adelgid AGENCY..., into the continental United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of... biological control agent to reduce the severity of hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA) infestations. HWA, an...

  18. Assessing biological invasions in European Seas: Biological traits of the most widespread non-indigenous species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardeccia, Alice; Marchini, Agnese; Occhipinti-Ambrogi, Anna; Galil, Bella; Gollasch, Stephan; Minchin, Dan; Narščius, Aleksas; Olenin, Sergej; Ojaveer, Henn

    2018-02-01

    The biological traits of the sixty-eight most widespread multicellular non-indigenous species (MWNIS) in European Seas: Baltic Sea, Western European Margin of the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea were examined. Data for nine biological traits was analyzed, and a total of 41 separate categories were used to describe the biological and ecological functions of these NIS. Our findings show that high dispersal ability, high reproductive rate and ecological generalization are the biological traits commonly associated with MWNIS. The functional groups that describe most of the 68 MWNIS are: photoautotrophic, zoobenthic (both sessile and motile) and nektonic predatory species. However, these 'most widespread' species comprise a wide range of taxa and biological trait profiles; thereby a clear "identikit of a perfect invader" for marine and brackish environments is difficult to define. Some traits, for example: "life form", "feeding method" and "mobility", feature multiple behaviours and strategies. Even species introduced by a single pathway, e.g. vessels, feature diverse biological trait profiles. MWNIS likely to impact community organization, structure and diversity are often associated with brackish environments. For many traits ("life form", "sociability", "reproductive type", "reproductive frequency", "haploid and diploid dispersal" and "mobility"), the categories mostly expressed by the impact-causing MWNIS do not differ substantially from the whole set of MWNIS.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cross, S.

    1997-03-01

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

  20. Biological monitoring and assessment of rivers as a basis for identifying and prioritising river management options

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Roux, DJ

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available management objectives. This paper demonstrates how the results obtained with biological indices and system-specific knowledge, are combined to derive semi quantitative assessments of ecosystem condition. These assessments provide the basis for responding...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

    Researchers, instructors, and funding bodies in biology education are unanimous about the importance of developing students' competence in experimental design. Despite this, only limited measures are available for assessing such competence development, especially in the areas of molecular and cellular biology. Also, existing assessments do not…

  2. 76 FR 3076 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Air Potato

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-19

    ...] Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Air Potato AGENCY: Animal and... environmental assessment (EA) relative to the control of air potato (Dioscorea bulbifera). The EA considers the... States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of air potato infestations. We are...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Denise A.

    2014-01-01

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

  4. Structural and Biological Assessment of Zinc Doped Hydroxyapatite Nanoparticles

    OpenAIRE

    Popa , Cristina ,; Deniaud , Aurélien; Michaud-Soret , Isabelle; Guégan , Régis; Motelica-Heino , Mikael; Predoi , Daniela

    2016-01-01

    International audience; The aim of the current research work was to study the physicochemical and biological properties of synthesized zinc doped hydroxyapatite (ZnHAp) nanoparticles with Zn concentrations í µí±¥ Zn = 0 (HAp), í µí±¥ Zn = 0.07 (7ZnHAp), and í µí±¥ Zn = 0.1 (10ZnHAp) for potential use in biological applications. The morphology, size, compositions, and incorporation of zinc into hydroxyapatite were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), transmission electron micro...

  5. Dealing with immunogenicity of biologicals: assessment and clinical relevance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wolbink, Gerrit J.; Aarden, Lucien A.; Dijkmans, B. A. C.

    2009-01-01

    PURPOSE OF REVIEW: In the last decade, biologicals revolutionized rheumatology. An increasing number of patients benefit from biotherapeuticals. However, some patients do not respond to treatment and others lose their response after a certain time. Immunogenicity is one of the factors linked to

  6. An assessment of the biological and physico-chemical ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Physico-chemical parameters and biological (phytoplanktons and macrophytes) composition of Bindare and Hanwa streams in Zaria, Nigeria were studied for a period of three months (September to November 2008). The streams have catchments of varying land use patterns ranging from agricultural (farming and animal ...

  7. Development and Assessment of Service Learning Projects in General Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Felzien, Lisa; Salem, Laura

    2008-01-01

    Service learning involves providing service to the community while requiring students to meet learning goals in a specific course. A service learning project was implemented in a general biology course at Rockhurst University to involve students in promoting scientific education in conjunction with community partner educators. Students were…

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2004-01-01

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

  9. Assessment and biological treatment of effluent from textile industry

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    hope&shola

    (DS), odour and colour intensity prior to biological treatment with mixed culture of Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus ... bioremediation of TSS < 30 mg/l (99.5%), DS (99.6%) and SS (99.3%). Key words: ... (chemical, organic and thermal wastes), pesticides and fertilizers ... decolorisation by microorganism under anaerobic.

  10. Funding needed for assessments of weed biological control

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-01-01

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

  11. Assessing Student Behaviors and Motivation for Actively Learning Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Michael Edward

    2017-01-01

    Vision and Change states that one of the major changes in the way we design biology courses should be a switch in approach from teacher-centered learning to student-centered learning and identifies active learning as a recommended methods. Studies show performance benefits for students taking courses that use active learning. What is unknown is…

  12. Use of 15N methodology to assess biological nitrogen fixation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hardarson, G.

    1990-01-01

    One of the most important characteristics of legumes are their ability in symbiosis with Rhizobium bacteria to fix atmospheric nitrogen for growth. For proper management and a full realization of the benefits of this plant-microbial association, it is necessary to estimate how much nitrogen is fixed under different conditions in the field. It is only after this is known that various factors can be manipulated so as to increase the amount and proportion of N a plant derives from biological fixation. A suitable method for accurately measuring the amount of N crops derive from fixation is therefore an important requirement in any programme aimed at maximizing biological nitrogen fixation. There are several methods available to measure N 2 fixation (Bergersen, 1980) based on (1) increment in N yield and plant growth, (2) nitrogen balance (3) acetylene reduction and (4) the use of isotopes of N. Only isotopic methods will be illustrated here. 20 refs, 2 figs, 9 tabs

  13. A biologic approach to environmental assessment and epidemiology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Smith, Thomas J; Kriebel, David

    2010-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  15. Biology Needs a Modern Assessment System for Professional Productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  16. Structural and Biological Assessment of Zinc Doped Hydroxyapatite Nanoparticles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristina Liana Popa

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steffen, Benjamin; Hößle, Corinna

    2017-01-01

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

  18. Preliminary Chemical and Biological Assessment of Ogbe Creek ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    USER

    The study was aimed at assessing the quality of water from the Ogbe Creek ... indicated the impact of the perturbational stress on the organisms inhabiting the creek. ... experiences seasonal flooding which introduces a lot of detritus and ...

  19. Adding biological realism to assessments of landscape connectivity

    Science.gov (United States)

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

  20. DNA barcodes for assessment of the biological integrity of aquatic ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Water quality regulations and aquatic ecosystem monitoring increasingly rely on direct assessments of biological integrity. Because these aquatic “bioassessments” evaluate the incidence and abundance of sensitive aquatic species, they are able to measure cumulative ecosystem eff...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

  2. Artificial intelligence in molecular biology: a review and assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rawlings, C J; Fox, J P

    1994-06-29

    Over the past ten years, molecular biologists and computer scientists have experimented with various computational methods developed in artificial intelligence (AI). AI research has yielded a number of novel technologies, which are typified by an emphasis on symbolic (non-numerical) programming methods aimed at problems which are not amenable to classical algorithmic solutions. Prominent examples include knowledge-based and expert systems, qualitative simulation and artificial neural networks and other automated learning techniques. These methods have been applied to problems in data analysis, construction of advanced databases and modelling of biological systems. Practical results are now being obtained, notably in the recognition of active genes in genomic sequences, the assembly of physical and genetic maps and protein structure prediction. This paper outlines the principal methods, surveys the findings to date, and identifies the promising trends and current limitations.

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

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

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

  4. [Biosafety provision on handling pathogenic biological agents on the concept of biorisk assessment and management].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobrokhotskiĭ, O N; Kolombet, L V

    2010-01-01

    The paper shows it urgent to realize the concept of biological risk assessment and management on handling pathogenic biological agents (PBA). It gives a number of objective reasons that impede development of a methodology to assess laboratory biological risks. A concept of continuous improvement (a process approach) is proposed for use as a biorisk management tool for biosafety assurance when handling PBA. It is demonstrated that development of international cooperation urgently requires that national concepts and standards be harmonized with international regulatory documents on biosafety assurance on handling PBA.

  5. Phytochemical and biological assessment of medicinally important plant ochradenus arabicus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hussain, J.

    2014-01-01

    Jabal Al-Akhdar (Oman) is one of diverse floral region of Arabian Peninsula. Ochradenus arabicus, is an important medicinal plant to local people of the area. However, little is known about its potential role in biological activities against various emerging ailments. The collected plant samples were extracted with methanol and fractionated into n-hexane (JOAH), ethyl acetate (JOAE), chloroform (JOAC), n-butanol (JOAB) and water (JOAAQ). Various concentrations of these fractions were tested for their antimicrobial, anticancer, antioxidant, antidiabetic, phenolics, flavonoids, allopathic and nutrition quality properties. The results showed that fruits and leaves of O. arabicus have higher levels of carbohydrate, crude fats, fibres, proteins, moisture, ash and energy values. In phytotoxic activities, JOAAQ inhibited the lettuce seed germination and growth. The anticancer activities of fractions showed that JOAE, JOAB and JOAAQ are potent to reduce the cancer cell viability of HT29, HCT116, HepG2 and MCF-7 lines with a concentration of 1000 micro g/ml. JOAB showed a meagre activity of 12% in Glucosidase inhibition assay. The total phenolic and flavonoid contents were significantly higher in JOAE, which also resulted in higher DPPH radical scavenging activity as compared to other fractions and control. JOAE also exhibited higher antibacterial and antifungal activities. The results of current findings suggest that O. arabicus is a potential medicinal plants, which could be subjected to advance column chromatography for lead compounds using a bioassay guided approach. (author)

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Jan Cornelius

    2016-08-01

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

  7. Statistical issues in biological radiation dosimetry for risk assessment using stable chromosome aberrations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cologne, J.B.; Preston, D.L.

    1998-01-01

    Biological dosimeters are useful for epidemiologic risk assessment in populations exposed to catastrophic nuclear events and as a means of validating physical dosimetry in radiation workers. Application requires knowledge of the magnitude of uncertainty in the biological dose estimates and an understanding of potential statistical pitfalls arising from their use. This paper describes the statistical aspects of biological dosimetry in general and presents a detailed analysis in the specific case of dosimetry for risk assessment using stable chromosome aberration frequency. Biological dose estimates may be obtained from a dose-response curve, but negative estimates can result and adjustment must be made for regression bias due to imprecise estimation when the estimates are used in regression analyses. Posterior-mean estimates, derived as the mean of the distribution of true doses compatible with a given value of the biological endpoint, have several desirable properties: they are nonnegative, less sensitive to extreme skewness in the true dose distribution, and implicitly adjusted to avoid regression bias. The methods necessitate approximating the true-dose distribution in the population in which biological dosimetry is being applied, which calls for careful consideration of this distribution through other information. An important question addressed here is to what extent the methods are robust to misspecification of this distribution, because in many applications of biological dosimetry it cannot be characterized well. The findings suggest that dosimetry based solely on stable chromosome aberration frequency may be useful for population-based risk assessment

  8. PREDICTING LEVELS OF STRESS FROM BIOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT DATA: EMPIRICAL MODELS FROM THE EASTERN CORN BELT PLAINS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biological assessment is becoming an increasingly popular tool in the evaluation of stream ecosystem integrity. However, little progress has been made to date in developing tools to relate assessment results to specific stressors. This paper continues the investigation of the f...

  9. Examining portfolio-based assessment in an upper-level biology course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziegler, Brittany Ann

    Historically, students have been viewed as empty vessels and passive participants in the learning process but students actually are active forming their own conceptions. One way student learning is impacted is through assessment. Alternative assessment, which contrasts traditional assessment methods, takes into account how students learn by promoting engagement and construction of knowledge This dissertation explores portfolio-based assessment, a method of alternative assessment, which requires students to compose a purposeful collection of work demonstrating their knowledge in an upper-level biology course. The research objectives include characterizing and contributing to the understanding of portfolio-based assessment in higher education, examining reflection and inquiry portfolio components, determining student knowledge of biological concepts, and investigating student integrative thinking through the transformation of reflections into concept webs One main finding includes the majority of reflections categorized as naive or novice in quality. There was no difference in quality of reflections among biological topic. There was a relatively equal amount of high and low cognitive level questions. Students' knowledge of biological concepts significantly increased from the beginning to end of the course. Student written reflections were transformed into concept webs to allow for examination of student integrative thinking. Concepts, relationships, and interconnections in concept webs showed variation but declined by the end of the semester This study is one of the first examining portfolio-based assessment in an upper-level biology course We do not contend that this method of assessment is the only way to promote student learning but portfolio-based assessment may be a tool that can transform science education but currently the role of portfolio-based assessment in science education remains unclear. Additional research needs to be conducted before we will fully

  10. Research and engineering assessment of biological solubilization of phosphate

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    1993-03-01

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

  11. Biological and chemical assessments of zinc ageing in field soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Donner, Erica; Broos, Kris; Heemsbergen, Diane; Warne, Michael St. J.; McLaughlin, Mike J.; Hodson, Mark E.; Nortcliff, Stephen

    2010-01-01

    As zinc (Zn) is both an essential trace element and potential toxicant, the effects of Zn fixation in soil are of practical significance. Soil samples from four field sites amended with ZnSO 4 were used to investigate ageing of soluble Zn under field conditions over a 2-year period. Lability of Zn measured using 65 Zn radioisotope dilution showed a significant decrease over time and hence evidence of Zn fixation in three of the four soils. However, 0.01 M CaCl 2 extractions and toxicity measurements using a genetically modified lux-marked bacterial biosensor did not indicate a decrease in soluble/bioavailable Zn over time. This was attributed to the strong regulatory effect of abiotic properties such as pH on these latter measurements. These results also showed that Zn ageing occurred immediately after Zn spiking, emphasising the need to incubate freshly spiked soils before ecotoxicity assessments. - Ageing effects were detected in Zn-amended field soils using 65 Zn isotopic dilution as a measure of lability, but not with either CaCl 2 extractions or a lux-marked bacterial biosensor.

  12. Quantitative assessment of biological impact using transcriptomic data and mechanistic network models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thomson, Ty M.; Sewer, Alain; Martin, Florian; Belcastro, Vincenzo; Frushour, Brian P.; Gebel, Stephan; Park, Jennifer; Schlage, Walter K.; Talikka, Marja; Vasilyev, Dmitry M.; Westra, Jurjen W.; Hoeng, Julia; Peitsch, Manuel C.

    2013-01-01

    Exposure to biologically active substances such as therapeutic drugs or environmental toxicants can impact biological systems at various levels, affecting individual molecules, signaling pathways, and overall cellular processes. The ability to derive mechanistic insights from the resulting system responses requires the integration of experimental measures with a priori knowledge about the system and the interacting molecules therein. We developed a novel systems biology-based methodology that leverages mechanistic network models and transcriptomic data to quantitatively assess the biological impact of exposures to active substances. Hierarchically organized network models were first constructed to provide a coherent framework for investigating the impact of exposures at the molecular, pathway and process levels. We then validated our methodology using novel and previously published experiments. For both in vitro systems with simple exposure and in vivo systems with complex exposures, our methodology was able to recapitulate known biological responses matching expected or measured phenotypes. In addition, the quantitative results were in agreement with experimental endpoint data for many of the mechanistic effects that were assessed, providing further objective confirmation of the approach. We conclude that our methodology evaluates the biological impact of exposures in an objective, systematic, and quantifiable manner, enabling the computation of a systems-wide and pan-mechanistic biological impact measure for a given active substance or mixture. Our results suggest that various fields of human disease research, from drug development to consumer product testing and environmental impact analysis, could benefit from using this methodology. - Highlights: • The impact of biologically active substances is quantified at multiple levels. • The systems-level impact integrates the perturbations of individual networks. • The networks capture the relationships between

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carlson, Thomas J.; Richmond, Marshall C.

    2011-05-05

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

  14. ABSCISSA ASSESSMENT WITH ALGAE: A COMPARISON OF LOCAL AND LANDSCAPE IMPAIRMENT MEASURES FOR BIOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT USING BENTHIC DIATOMS

    Science.gov (United States)

    The development of rigorous biological assessments is dependent upon well-constructed abscissa, and various methods, both subjective and objective, exist to measure expected impairment at both the landscape and local scale. A new, landscape-scale method has recently been offered...

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Casini, Michele; Eero, Margit; Carlshamre, Sofia

    2016-01-01

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

  16. Optimized assessment and usage of biological waste; Optimierte Erfassung und Verwertung von Bioabfall

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kern, Michael; Raussen, Thomas (eds.)

    2013-07-01

    The booklet on the optimized assessment and usage of biological waste includes contributions on the following issues: implementation of the bio-waste assessment in the federal states; economy and ecology of bio-waste fermentation; practice forum biogas: new bio-waste fermentation plants in Germany; effects of legal reforms on the usage and processing of bio-waste; flexible electricity input and power-to-gas.

  17. Assessment of refinery effluents and receiving waters using biologically-based effect methods

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2012-01-01

    Within the EU it is apparent that the regulatory focus on the use of biologically-based effects methods in the assessment of refinery effluents and receiving waters has increased in the past decade. This has been reflected in a recent refinery survey which revealed an increased use of such methods for assessing the quality of refinery effluents and their receiving waters. This report provides an overview of recent techniques used for this purpose. Several case studies provided by CONCAWE member companies describe the application of biological methods to effluent discharge assessment and surface water monitoring. The case studies show that when biological methods are applied to refinery effluents and receiving waters they raise different questions compared with those obtained using physical and chemical methods. Although direct measurement of the toxicity of effluent and receiving to aquatic organisms is the most cited technique, more recent efforts include tests that also address the persistence of effluent toxicity once discharged into the receiving water. Similarly, ecological monitoring of receiving waters can identify effects of effluent inputs arising from species interactions and other secondary effects that would not always be apparent from the results of biological tests conducted on single aquatic organisms. In light of recent and proposed regulatory developments the objectives of this report are therefore to: Discuss the application of biologically-based effects methods (including ecological monitoring) to refinery discharges and receiving waters; Assess the implications of such methods for future regulation of refinery discharges; and Provide guidance on good practice that can be used by refineries and the downstream oil industry to carry out and interpret data obtained using biologically-based effects methods. While the emphasis is on the toxic effects of effluents, other properties will also be covered because of their interdependency in determining

  18. Assessment of refinery effluents and receiving waters using biologically-based effect methods

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2012-01-15

    Within the EU it is apparent that the regulatory focus on the use of biologically-based effects methods in the assessment of refinery effluents and receiving waters has increased in the past decade. This has been reflected in a recent refinery survey which revealed an increased use of such methods for assessing the quality of refinery effluents and their receiving waters. This report provides an overview of recent techniques used for this purpose. Several case studies provided by CONCAWE member companies describe the application of biological methods to effluent discharge assessment and surface water monitoring. The case studies show that when biological methods are applied to refinery effluents and receiving waters they raise different questions compared with those obtained using physical and chemical methods. Although direct measurement of the toxicity of effluent and receiving to aquatic organisms is the most cited technique, more recent efforts include tests that also address the persistence of effluent toxicity once discharged into the receiving water. Similarly, ecological monitoring of receiving waters can identify effects of effluent inputs arising from species interactions and other secondary effects that would not always be apparent from the results of biological tests conducted on single aquatic organisms. In light of recent and proposed regulatory developments the objectives of this report are therefore to: Discuss the application of biologically-based effects methods (including ecological monitoring) to refinery discharges and receiving waters; Assess the implications of such methods for future regulation of refinery discharges; and Provide guidance on good practice that can be used by refineries and the downstream oil industry to carry out and interpret data obtained using biologically-based effects methods. While the emphasis is on the toxic effects of effluents, other properties will also be covered because of their interdependency in determining

  19. Science and Biology Assessment in Hong Kong--Progress and Developments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, May Hung; Cheung, Wing Ming Francis

    2005-01-01

    A paper was published in JBE in 2001 which examined the background of the education reform launched in 2000 in Hong Kong, and reviewed existing practices as well as beliefs in science and biology assessment among secondary teachers in Hong Kong. The direction of the reform was to take the emphasis away from public examinations as the sole…

  20. Biological Activity Assessment in Mexican Tropical Soils with Different Hydrocarbon Contamination Histories

    OpenAIRE

    Riveroll-Larios, Jessica; Escalante-Espinosa, Erika; Fócil-Monterrubio, Reyna L.; Díaz-Ramírez, Ildefonso J.

    2015-01-01

    The use of soil health indicators linked to microbial activities, such as key enzymes and respirometric profiles, helps assess the natural attenuation potential of soils contaminated with hydrocarbons. In this study, the intrinsic physicochemical characteristics, biological activity and biodegradation potential were recorded for two soils with different contamination histories (>5 years and

  1. 76 FR 4859 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-27

    ... (Diaphorina citri Kuwayama). The environmental assessment considers the effects of, and alternatives to, the...) for the Biological Control of Asian Citrus Psyllid (Diaphorina citri Kuwayama) in the Continental...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Susanne C

    2011-02-15

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cary, Tawnya; Branchaw, Janet

    2017-01-01

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

  5. Assessment tools for urban catchments: developing biological indicators based on benthic macroinvertebrates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purcell, A.H.; Bressler, D.W.; Paul, M.J.; Barbour, M.T.; Rankin, E.T.; Carter, J.L.; Resh, V.H.

    2009-01-01

    Biological indicators, particularly benthic macroinvertebrates, are widely used and effective measures of the impact of urbanization on stream ecosystems. A multimetric biological index of urbanization was developed using a large benthic macroinvertebrate dataset (n = 1,835) from the Baltimore, Maryland, metropolitan area and then validated with datasets from Cleveland, Ohio (n = 79); San Jose, California (n = 85); and a different subset of the Baltimore data (n = 85). The biological metrics used to develop the multimetric index were selected using several criteria and were required to represent ecological attributes of macroinvertebrate assemblages including taxonomic composition and richness (number of taxa in the insect orders of Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera, and Trichoptera), functional feeding group (number of taxa designated as filterers), and habit (percent of individuals which cling to the substrate). Quantile regression was used to select metrics and characterize the relationship between the final biological index and an urban gradient (composed of population density, road density, and urban land use). Although more complex biological indices exist, this simplified multimetric index showed a consistent relationship between biological indicators and urban conditions (as measured by quantile regression) in three climatic regions of the United States and can serve as an assessment tool for environmental managers to prioritize urban stream sites for restoration and protection.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franchi, Federico; Rodriguez-Porcel, Martin

    2017-01-01

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

  7. 76 FR 8708 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-02-15

    ...] Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent... have been prepared by the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service relative to a proposed biological... review and analysis of environmental impacts associated with the proposed biological control program...

  8. 75 FR 28233 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Asian Citrus Psyllid

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-20

    ...] Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Asian Citrus Psyllid AGENCY... radiata, into the continental United States for use as a biological control agent to reduce the severity... of an alternative biological control agent, an encyrtid wasp, (Diaphorencyrtus aligarhensis). However...

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1996-03-01

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

  10. Biological Select Agents and Toxins: Risk-Based Assessment Management and Oversight.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Burnett, LouAnn Crawford; Brodsky, Benjamin H.

    2016-12-01

    Sandia National Laboratories' International Biological and Chemical Threat Reduction (SNL/IBCTR) conducted, on behalf of the Federal Select Agent Program (FSAP), a review of risk assessment in modern select agent laboratories. This review and analysis consisted of literature review, interviews of FSAP staff, entities regulated by FSAP, and deliberations of an expert panel. Additionally, SNL/IBCTR reviewed oversight mechanisms used by industries, US agencies, and other countries for high-consequence risks (e.g, nuclear, chemical, or biological materials, aviation, off-shore drilling, etc.) to determine if alternate oversight mechanisms existed that might be applicable to FSAP oversight of biological select agents and toxins. This report contains five findings, based on these reviews and analyses, with recommendations and suggested actions for FSAP to consider.

  11. Quantifying biological integrity by taxonomic completeness: its utility in regional and global assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkins, Charles P

    2006-08-01

    Water resources managers and conservation biologists need reliable, quantitative, and directly comparable methods for assessing the biological integrity of the world's aquatic ecosystems. Large-scale assessments are constrained by the lack of consistency in the indicators used to assess biological integrity and our current inability to translate between indicators. In theory, assessments based on estimates of taxonomic completeness, i.e., the proportion of expected taxa that were observed (observed/expected, O/E) are directly comparable to one another and should therefore allow regionally and globally consistent summaries of the biological integrity of freshwater ecosystems. However, we know little about the true comparability of O/E assessments derived from different data sets or how well O/E assessments perform relative to other indicators in use. I compared the performance (precision, bias, and sensitivity to stressors) of O/E assessments based on five different data sets with the performance of the indicators previously applied to these data (three multimetric indices, a biotic index, and a hybrid method used by the state of Maine). Analyses were based on data collected from U.S. stream ecosystems in North Carolina, the Mid-Atlantic Highlands, Maine, and Ohio. O/E assessments resulted in very similar estimates of mean regional conditions compared with most other indicators once these indicators' values were standardized relative to reference-site means. However, other indicators tended to be biased estimators of O/E, a consequence of differences in their response to natural environmental gradients and sensitivity to stressors. These results imply that, in some cases, it may be possible to compare assessments derived from different indicators by standardizing their values (a statistical approach to data harmonization). In situations where it is difficult to standardize or otherwise harmonize two or more indicators, O/E values can easily be derived from existing

  12. Non-ionizing radiations : physical characteristics, biological effects and health hazard assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Repacholi, M.H.

    1988-01-01

    The Workshop was a project of the International Non-Ionizing Radiation Committee of IRPA and comprised a series of educational lectures and demonstrations intended to give a comprehensive overview of non-ionizing electromagnetic radiation: physical characteristics, sources of concern, levels of exposure, mechanisms of interaction and reported effects of these fields and radiations with biological tissues, human studies, health risk assessment, national and international standards and guidelines, and protective measures

  13. METHODS OF ASSESSMENT OF THE RELATIVE BIOLOGICAL EFFECTIVENESS OF NEUTRONS IN NEUTRON THERAPY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. A. Lisin

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The relative biological effectiveness (RBE of fast neutrons is an important factor influencing the quality of neutron therapy therefore, the assessment of RBE is of great importance. Experimental and clinical studies as well as different mathematical and radiobiological models are used for assessing RBE. Research is conducted for neutron sources differing in the method of producing particles, energy and energy spectrum. Purpose: to find and analyze the dose-dependence of fast neutron RBE in neutron therapy using the U-120 cyclotron and NG-12I generator. Material and methods: The optimal method for assessing the relative biological effectiveness of neutrons for neutron therapy was described. To analyze the dependence of the RBE on neutron dose, the multi-target model of cell survival was applied. Results: The dependence of the RBE of neutrons produced from the U-120 cyclotron and NG-120 generator on the dose level was found for a single irradiation of biological objects. It was shown that the function of neutron dose was consistent with similar dependencies found by other authors in the experimental and clinical studies.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  15. Assessing isocyanate exposures in polyurethane industry sectors using biological and air monitoring methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Creely, K S; Hughson, G W; Cocker, J; Jones, K

    2006-08-01

    Isocyanates, as a chemical group, are considered to be the biggest cause of occupational asthma in the UK. Monitoring of airborne exposures to total isocyanate is costly, requiring considerable expertise, both in terms of sample collection and chemical analysis and cannot be used to assess the effectiveness of protection from wearing respiratory protective equipment (RPE). Biological monitoring by analysis of metabolites in urine can be a relatively simple and inexpensive way to assess exposure to isocyanates. It may also be a useful way to evaluate the effectiveness of control measures in place. In this study biological and inhalation monitoring were undertaken to assess exposure in a variety of workplaces in the non-motor vehicle repair sector. Companies selected to participate in the survey included only those judged to be using good working practices when using isocyanate formulations. This included companies that used isocyanates to produce moulded polyurethane products, insulation material and those involved in industrial painting. Air samples were collected by personal monitoring and were analysed for total isocyanate content. Urine samples were collected soon after exposure and analysed for the metabolites of different isocyanate species, allowing calculation of the total metabolite concentration. Details of the control measures used and observed contamination of exposed skin were also recorded. A total of 21 companies agreed to participate in the study, with exposure measurements being collected from 22 sites. The airborne isocyanate concentrations were generally very low (range 0.0005-0.066 mg m(-3)). A total of 50 of the 70 samples were polyurethane foam insulation (0.023 mg m(-3)). The most commonly detected isocyanate in the urine was hexamethylene diisocyanate, which was detected in 21 instances. The geometric mean total isocyanate metabolite concentration for the dataset was 0.29 micromol mol(-1) creatinine (range 0.05-12.64 micromol mol(-1

  16. Health effects of low-level ionising radiation: biological basis for risk assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Upton, A.C.

    1987-01-01

    The biological basis for risk assessment is discussed. The risks of carcinogenic effects, teratogenic effects, and genetic (heritable) effects are estimated to vary in proportion with the dose of radiation in the low-dose domain; however, the risks also appear to vary with the LET of the radiation, age at the time of irradiation, and other variables. Although the data suffice to place the risks in perspective with other hazards of modern life, further research to refine the reliability of the risk assessment is called for. (author)

  17. Current Methods Applied to Biomaterials - Characterization Approaches, Safety Assessment and Biological International Standards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Justine P R; Ortiz, H Ivan Melendez; Bucio, Emilio; Alves, Patricia Terra; Lima, Mayara Ingrid Sousa; Goulart, Luiz Ricardo; Mathor, Monica B; Varca, Gustavo H C; Lugao, Ademar B

    2018-04-10

    Safety and biocompatibility assessment of biomaterials are themes of constant concern as advanced materials enter the market as well as products manufactured by new techniques emerge. Within this context, this review provides an up-to-date approach on current methods for the characterization and safety assessment of biomaterials and biomedical devices from a physicalchemical to a biological perspective, including a description of the alternative methods in accordance with current and established international standards. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Eero, Margit; Hjelm, Joakim; Behrens, Jane

    2015-01-01

    The eastern Baltic (EB) cod (Gadus morhua) stock was depleted and overexploited for decades until the mid-2000s, when fishing mortality rapidly declined and biomass started to increase, as shown by stock assessments. These positive developments were partly assigned to effective management measures...... that the stock is in distress. In this study, we (i) summarize the knowledge of recent changes in cod biology and ecosystem conditions, (ii) describe the subsequent challenges for stock assessment, and (iii) highlight the key questions where answers are urgently needed to understand the present stock status...

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weir, Andrea B

    2008-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Florian

    2012-05-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    1988-08-29

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1988-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rawlusyk, Kevin James

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

  6. Characterization of Radiation Fields for Assessing Concrete Degradation in Biological Shields of NPPs

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-09-01

    Life extensions of nuclear power plants (NPPs) to 60 years of operation and the possibility of subsequent license renewal to 80 years have renewed interest in long-term material degradation in NPPs. Large irreplaceable sections of most nuclear generating stations are constructed from concrete, including safety-related structures such as biological shields and containment buildings; therefore, concrete degradation is being considered with particular focus on radiation-induced effects. Based on the projected neutron fluence values (E > 0.1 MeV) in the concrete biological shields of the US pressurized water reactor fleet and the currently available data on radiation effects on concrete, some decrease in mechanical properties of concrete cannot be ruled out during extended operation beyond 60 years. An expansion of the irradiated concrete database is desirable to ensure reliable risk assessment for extended operation of nuclear power plants.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    : Tools for the Assessment of Ecosystem Health, 2009-2011), which is part of the Baltic Sea BONUS+ Programme funded jointly by national funding agencies and FP7 ERA-NET+ of the European Commission. The BEAST project consists of three workpackages (WP) with the following main tasks: WP1- Field studies...... and experiments in selected sub-regions of the Baltic Sea, WP2 - Application and validation of methods in monitoring and assessment in the Baltic Sea, and WP3 - Developing tools for ecosystem health assessment in the Baltic Sea. BEAST research activities are focused in the sub-regions of Gulf of Bothnia, Gulf...... of Finland, Gulf of Riga, Gulf of Gdansk and the Belt Sea, most of which are characterised by scarce data on biological effects of hazardous substances. The data acquired will be combined with previous data (e.g. national monitoring activities, case studies, EU BEEP project) to reach the goals of WP2 and WP3...

  8. Benefits of a Biological Monitoring Program for Assessing Remediation Performance and Long-Term Stewardship - 12272

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peterson, Mark [Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee 37831 (United States)

    2012-07-01

    The Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program (BMAP) is a long-running program that was designed to evaluate biological conditions and trends in waters downstream of Department of Energy (DOE) facilities in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. BMAP monitoring has focused on aquatic pathways from sources to biota, which is consistent with the sites' clean water regulatory focus and the overall cleanup strategy which divided remediation areas into watershed administrative units. Specific programmatic goals include evaluating operational and legacy impacts to nearby streams and the effectiveness of implemented remediation strategies at the sites. The program is characterized by consistent, long-term sampling and analysis methods in a multidisciplinary and quantitative framework. Quantitative sampling has shown conclusively that at most Oak Ridge stream sites, fish and aquatic macro-invertebrate communities have improved considerably since the 1980s. Monitoring of mercury and PCBs in fish has shown that remedial and abatement actions have also improved stream conditions, although in some cases biological monitoring suggests further actions are needed. Follow-up investigations have been implemented by BMAP to identify sources or causes, consistent with an adaptive management approach. Biological monitoring results to date have not only been used to assess regulatory compliance, but have provided additional benefits in helping address other components of the DOE's mission, including facility operations, natural resource, and scientific goals. As a result the program has become a key measure of long-term trends in environmental conditions and of high value to the Oak Ridge environmental management community, regulators, and the public. Some of the BMAP lessons learned may be of value in the design, implementation, and application of other long-term monitoring and stewardship programs, and assist environmental managers in the assessment and prediction of the effectiveness of

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Doyle, Robert D; Byars, Bruce W

    2009-11-24

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

  10. The impact of biology on risk assessment -- Workshop of the National Research Council's board on radiation effects research. Meeting report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fry, R.J.M.; Grosovsky, A.; Hanawalt, P.C.; Ullrich, R.L.

    1997-01-01

    The linear, nonthreshold extrapolation from a dose-response relationship for ionizing radiation derived at higher doses to doses for which regulatory standards are proposed is being challenged by some scientists and defended by others. It appears that the risks associated with exposures to doses of interest are below the risks that can be measured with epidemiologic studies. Therefore, many have looked to biology to provide information relevant to risk assessment. The workshop reported here, ''The Impact of biology on Risk Assessment,'' was planned to address the need for further information by bringing together scientists who have been working in key fields of biology and others who have been contemplating the issues associated specifically with this question. The goals of the workshop were to summarize and review the status of the relevant biology, to determine how the reported biologic data might influence risk assessment, and to identify subjects on which more data is needed

  11. Development of tools for integrated monitoring and assessment of hazardous substances and their biological effects in the Baltic Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehtonen, Kari K; Sundelin, Brita; Lang, Thomas; Strand, Jakob

    2014-02-01

    The need to develop biological effects monitoring to facilitate a reliable assessment of hazardous substances has been emphasized in the Baltic Sea Action Plan of the Helsinki Commission. An integrated chemical-biological approach is vitally important for the understanding and proper assessment of anthropogenic pressures and their effects on the Baltic Sea. Such an approach is also necessary for prudent management aiming at safeguarding the sustainable use of ecosystem goods and Services. The BEAST project (Biological Effects of Anthropogenic Chemical Stress: Tools for the Assessment of Ecosystem Health) set out to address this topic within the BONUS Programme. BEAST generated a large amount of quality-assured data on several biological effects parameters (biomarkers) in various marine species in different sub-regions of the Baltic Sea. New indicators (biological response measurement methods) and management tools (integrated indices) with regard to the integrated monitoring approach were suggested.

  12. Biological indicators capable of assessing thermal treatment efficiency of hydrocarbon mixture-contaminated soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jiangang; Zhan, Xinhua; Zhou, Lixiang; Lin, Yusuo

    2010-08-01

    In China, there are many special sites for recycling and washing the used drums, which release a variety of C5-C40 hydrocarbon mixture into the soil around the site. The remediation of these contaminated sites by thermal treatment is adopted ubiquitously and needs to be assessed. Here we report the feasibility of biological indicators applied to assess thermal treatment efficiency in such contaminated soil. A series of biological indicators, including seed germination index (SGI), root elongation index (REI), plant growth height, biomass, carbon dioxide evolved (CDE), soil respiration inhibition (SRI) and soil enzymatic activities, were employed to monitor or assess hydrocarbon mixture removal in thermal treated soil. The results showed that residual hydrocarbon mixture content correlated strongly negatively with SGI for sesamum (Sesamum indicum L.), plant height, and biomass for ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) in the concentration ranges of 0-3990, 0-3170 and 0-2910 mg kg(-1), respectively. In contrast, REI for sesamum was positively correlated with residual hydrocarbon mixture content from 0 to 1860 mg kg(-1). In addition, both CDE and SRI demonstrated that 600 mg kg(-1) of residual hydrocarbon mixture content caused the highest amount of soil carbon dioxide emission and inhabitation of soil respiration. The results of soil enzymes indicated that 1000 mg kg(-1) of residual hydrocarbon mixture content was the threshold value of stimulating or inhibiting the activities of phosphatase and catalase, or completely destroying the activities of dehydrogenase, invertase, and urease. In conclusion, these biological indicators can be used as a meaningful complementation for traditional chemical content measurement in evaluating the environmental risk of the contaminated sites before and after thermal treatment. (c) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Assessing impacts on biological resources from Site Characterization Activities of the Yucca Mountain Project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Green, R.A.; Cox, M.K.; Doerr, T.B.; O'Farrell, T.P.; Ostler, W.K.; Rautenstrauch, K.R.; Wills, C.A.

    1991-01-01

    An integrated impact assessment program was developed to monitor the possible effects of Site Characterization Activities (SCA) on the biological resources of the Yucca Mountain area. The program uses control and treatment sites incorporating both spatial and temporal controls. The selection of biotic variables for monitoring was based on their relative importance in the ecosystem and their ability to provide information on potential impacts. All measures of biotic and abiotic variables will be made on the same sample plots to permit linking changes in variables to each other

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark T. Banik; Harold H. Burdsall

    1998-01-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    1999-01-01

    biological variation. The aim of the study was to assess (i) the analytical imprecision (CVA) and the average inherent intra- and interindividual biological variation (CVTI and CVG, respectively) for CA 125, CEA, and TPA in a group of healthy women; (ii) the significance of changes in serial results of each...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monika Beata Jakubus

    2015-04-01

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

  17. Human biological monitoring for exposure assessment in response to an incident involving hazardous materials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheepers, Paul T J; van Brederode, Nelly E; Bos, Peter M J; Nijhuis, Nicole J; van de Weerdt, Rik H J; van der Woude, Irene; Eggens, Martin L

    2014-12-15

    Biological monitoring in humans (HBM) is widely used in the field of occupational and environmental health. In the situation of an unexpected release of hazardous materials HBM may contribute to the medical support and treatment of exposed individuals from the general population or of emergency responders. Such exposure information may also be used to respond to individual concerns such as questions about a possible relationship between the chemicals released during the incident and health effects. In The Netherlands a guideline was prepared to support early decision-making about the possible use of HBM for exposure assessment during or as soon as possible following a chemical incident. The application of HBM in such an emergency setting is not much different from situations where HBM is normally used but there are some issues that need extra attention such as the choice of the biomarker, the biological media to be sampled, the time point at which biological samples should be collected, the ethics approval and technical implementation of the study protocol and the interpretation and communication of the study results. These issues addressed in the new guideline will support the use of HBM in the management of chemical disasters. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Montoro, A.; Almonacid, M.; Villaescusa, J.I.; Barquinero, J.F.; Rodriguez, P.; Barrios, L.; Verdu, G.; Ramos, M.

    2006-01-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2006-07-01

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

  20. Clarification of the Use of Biological Data and Information in the 2002 Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report Guidance

    Science.gov (United States)

    The memorandum modifies the 2002 Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report Guidance to provide clarity and promote consistency in the manner in which states use biological data and information in developing their 2002 submissions.

  1. Correlation of liquid chromatographic and biological assay for potency assessment of filgrastim and related impurities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skrlin, Ana; Kosor Krnic, Ela; Gosak, Darko; Prester, Berislav; Mrsa, Vladimir; Vuletic, Marko; Runac, Domagoj

    2010-11-02

    In vivo and in vitro potency assays have always been a critical tool for confirmation of protein activity. However, due to their complexity and time consuming procedures, it remains a challenge to find an alternative analytical approach that would enable their replacement with no impact on the quality of provided information. The goal of this research was to determine if a correlation between liquid chromatography assays and in vitro biological assay could be established for filgrastim (recombinant human granulocyte-colony stimulating factor, rhG-CSF) samples containing various amounts of related impurities. For that purpose, relevant filgrastim related impurities were purified to homogeneity and characterized by liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry. A significant correlation (R(2)>0.90) between the two types of assays was revealed. Potency of oxidized filgrastim was determined to be approximately 25% of filgrastim stated potency (1 x 10(8)IU/mg of protein). Formyl-methionine filgrastim had potency of 89% of the filgrastim stated potency, while filgrastim dimer had 67% of filgrastim stated potency. A mathematical model for the estimation of biological activity of filgrastim samples from chromatography data was established and a significant correlation between experimental potency values and potency values estimated by the mathematical model was obtained (R(2)=0.92). Based on these results a conclusion was made that reversed phase high performance liquid chromatography could be used as an alternative for the in vitro biological assay for potency assessment of filgrastim samples. Such an alternative model would enable substitution of a complex and time consuming biological assay with a robust and precise instrumental method in many practical cases. Copyright (c) 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Uncertainty of fast biological radiation dose assessment for emergency response scenarios.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ainsbury, Elizabeth A; Higueras, Manuel; Puig, Pedro; Einbeck, Jochen; Samaga, Daniel; Barquinero, Joan Francesc; Barrios, Lleonard; Brzozowska, Beata; Fattibene, Paola; Gregoire, Eric; Jaworska, Alicja; Lloyd, David; Oestreicher, Ursula; Romm, Horst; Rothkamm, Kai; Roy, Laurence; Sommer, Sylwester; Terzoudi, Georgia; Thierens, Hubert; Trompier, Francois; Vral, Anne; Woda, Clemens

    2017-01-01

    Reliable dose estimation is an important factor in appropriate dosimetric triage categorization of exposed individuals to support radiation emergency response. Following work done under the EU FP7 MULTIBIODOSE and RENEB projects, formal methods for defining uncertainties on biological dose estimates are compared using simulated and real data from recent exercises. The results demonstrate that a Bayesian method of uncertainty assessment is the most appropriate, even in the absence of detailed prior information. The relative accuracy and relevance of techniques for calculating uncertainty and combining assay results to produce single dose and uncertainty estimates is further discussed. Finally, it is demonstrated that whatever uncertainty estimation method is employed, ignoring the uncertainty on fast dose assessments can have an important impact on rapid biodosimetric categorization.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saha, Gouranga Chandra

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2001-03-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cid, N; Verkaik, I; García-Roger, E M; Rieradevall, M; Bonada, N; Sánchez-Montoya, M M; Gómez, R; Suárez, M L; Vidal-Abarca, M R; Demartini, D; Buffagni, A; Erba, S; Karaouzas, I; Skoulikidis, N; Prat, N

    2016-01-01

    Many streams in the Mediterranean Basin have temporary flow regimes. While timing for seasonal drought is predictable, they undergo strong inter-annual variability in flow intensity. This high hydrological variability and associated ecological responses challenge the ecological status assessment of temporary streams, particularly when setting reference conditions. This study examined the effects of flow connectivity in aquatic macroinvertebrates from seven reference temporary streams across the Mediterranean Basin where hydrological variability and flow conditions are well studied. We tested for the effect of flow cessation on two streamflow indices and on community composition, and, by performing random forest and classification tree analyses we identified important biological predictors for classifying the aquatic state either as flowing or disconnected pools. Flow cessation was critical for one of the streamflow indices studied and for community composition. Macroinvertebrate families found to be important for classifying the aquatic state were Hydrophilidae, Simuliidae, Hydropsychidae, Planorbiidae, Heptageniidae and Gerridae. For biological traits, trait categories associated to feeding habits, food, locomotion and substrate relation were the most important and provided more accurate predictions compared to taxonomy. A combination of selected metrics and associated thresholds based on the most important biological predictors (i.e. Bio-AS Tool) were proposed in order to assess the aquatic state in reference temporary streams, especially in the absence of hydrological data. Although further development is needed, the tool can be of particular interest for monitoring, restoration, and conservation purposes, representing an important step towards an adequate management of temporary rivers not only in the Mediterranean Basin but also in other regions vulnerable to the effects of climate change. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Bibliographical database of radiation biological dosimetry and risk assessment: Part 2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1990-09-01

    This is part 11 of a database constructed to support research in radiation biological dosimetry and risk assessment. Relevant publications were identified through detailed searches of national and international electronic databases and through our personal knowledge of the subject. Publications were numbered and key worded, and referenced in an electronic data-retrieval system that permits quick access through computerized searches on authors, key words, title, year, journal name, or publication number. Photocopies of the publications contained in the database are maintained in a file that is numerically arranged by our publication acquisition numbers. This volume contains 1048 additional entries, which are listed in alphabetical order by author. The computer software used for the database is a simple but sophisticated relational database program that permits quick information access, high flexibility, and the creation of customized reports. This program is inexpensive and is commercially available for the Macintosh and the IBM PC. Although the database entries were made using a Macintosh computer, we have the capability to convert the files into the IBM PC version. As of this date, the database cites 2260 publications. Citations in the database are from 200 different scientific journals. There are also references to 80 books and published symposia, and 158 reports. Information relevant to radiation biological dosimetry and risk assessment is widely distributed within the scientific literature, although a few journals clearly predominate. The journals publishing the largest number of relevant papers are Health Physics, with a total of 242 citations in the database, and Mutation Research, with 185 citations. Other journals with over 100 citations in the database, are Radiation Research, with 136, and International Journal of Radiation Biology, with 132

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashley David L

    2008-04-01

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

  8. Statistical assessment of crosstalk enrichment between gene groups in biological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCormack, Theodore; Frings, Oliver; Alexeyenko, Andrey; Sonnhammer, Erik L L

    2013-01-01

    Analyzing groups of functionally coupled genes or proteins in the context of global interaction networks has become an important aspect of bioinformatic investigations. Assessing the statistical significance of crosstalk enrichment between or within groups of genes can be a valuable tool for functional annotation of experimental gene sets. Here we present CrossTalkZ, a statistical method and software to assess the significance of crosstalk enrichment between pairs of gene or protein groups in large biological networks. We demonstrate that the standard z-score is generally an appropriate and unbiased statistic. We further evaluate the ability of four different methods to reliably recover crosstalk within known biological pathways. We conclude that the methods preserving the second-order topological network properties perform best. Finally, we show how CrossTalkZ can be used to annotate experimental gene sets using known pathway annotations and that its performance at this task is superior to gene enrichment analysis (GEA). CrossTalkZ (available at http://sonnhammer.sbc.su.se/download/software/CrossTalkZ/) is implemented in C++, easy to use, fast, accepts various input file formats, and produces a number of statistics. These include z-score, p-value, false discovery rate, and a test of normality for the null distributions.

  9. Biological assessment of aquatic pollution: a review, with emphasis on plants as biomonitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doust, J L; Schmidt, M; Doust, L L

    1994-05-01

    In a number of disciplines including ecology, ecotoxicology, water quality management, water resource management, fishery biology etc., there is significant interest in the testing of new materials, environmental samples (of water or sediments) and specific sites, in terms of their effects on biota. In the first instance, we consider various sources of aquatic pollution, sources typically associated with developed areas of the world. Historically, much water quality assessment has been performed by researchers with a background in chemistry or engineering, thus chemical analysis was a dominant form of assessment. However, chemical analyses, particularly of such materials as organochlorines and polyaromatic hydrocarbons can be expensive, and local environmental factors may cause the actual exposure of an organism to be little correlated with chemical concentrations in the surrounding water or sediments. To a large extent toxicity testing has proceeded independently of environmental quality assessment in situ, and the work has been done by different, and differently-trained researchers. Here we attempt to bring together the various forms of biological assessment of aquatic pollution, because in our opinion it is worth developing a coherent framework for the application of this powerful tool. Biotic assessment in its most primitive form involves the simple tracking of mortality in exposed organisms. However, in most natural environments it is extended, chronic exposure to contaminants that has the most wide-ranging and irreversible repercussions--thus measures of sub-lethal impairment are favoured. From an ecological standpoint, it is most valuable to assess ecological effects by direct study of in situ contaminant body burdens and impairment of growth and reproduction compared with 'clean' sites. A distinction is made here between bioindication and biomonitoring, and a case is made for including aquatic macrophytes (angiosperms) in studies of contaminant levels and

  10. Sediment contaminants and biological effects in southern California: Use of a multivariate statistical approach to assess biological impact

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maxon, C.L.; Barnett, A.M.; Diener, D.R.

    1997-01-01

    This study attempts to predict biological toxicity and benthic community impact in sediments collected from two southern California sites. Contaminant concentrations and grain size were evaluated as predictors using a two-step multivariate approach. The first step used principal component analysis (PCA) to describe contamination type and magnitude present at each site. Four dominant PC vectors, explaining 88% of the total variance, each corresponded to a unique physical and/or chemical signature. The four PC vectors, in decreasing order of importance, were: (1) high molecular weight polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), most likely from combusted or weathered petroleum; (2) low molecular weight alkylated PAH, primarily from weathered fuel product; (3) low molecular weight nonalkylated PAH, indicating a fresh petroleum-related origin; and (4) fine-grained sediments and metals. The second step used stepwise regression analysis to predict individual biological effects (dependent) variables using the four PC vectors as independent variables. Results showed that sediment grain size alone was the best predictor of amphipod mortality. Contaminant vectors showed discrete depositional areas independent of grain size. Neither contaminant concentrations nor PCA vectors were good predictors of biological effects, most likely due to the low concentrations in sediments

  11. The use of drawing as an alternative assessment tool in biology teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nugraha, I.

    2018-05-01

    Science required the recording of data to build knowledge. The act of drawing an illustration is one of the oldest methods to record the data in science. Illustration in science provides information that the written word cannot, hence the old adage “A picture is worth a thousand words” is very important for studying science. Drawings an illustration is not only valuable for artists but also for scientists because some aspects of science process skills can also be developed through drawing. In terms of science teaching, applying the act of drawing can also be used as an assessment tool. In this study, we assessed drawing of human internal organs of 38 student teachers who enrolled human physiology course and its correlation to their final exam achievement. Guidance of biological drawing was employed to assess the quality, labelling, and annotations of the drawing. The finding of this study showed that there was a positive correlation between the quality of drawing and final exam achievement. It is suggested that using the method of drawing in combination with written responses assessment would provide a more complete information about student’s understanding of human internal organs.

  12. Compression-based classification of biological sequences and structures via the Universal Similarity Metric: experimental assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manzini Giovanni

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Similarity of sequences is a key mathematical notion for Classification and Phylogenetic studies in Biology. It is currently primarily handled using alignments. However, the alignment methods seem inadequate for post-genomic studies since they do not scale well with data set size and they seem to be confined only to genomic and proteomic sequences. Therefore, alignment-free similarity measures are actively pursued. Among those, USM (Universal Similarity Metric has gained prominence. It is based on the deep theory of Kolmogorov Complexity and universality is its most novel striking feature. Since it can only be approximated via data compression, USM is a methodology rather than a formula quantifying the similarity of two strings. Three approximations of USM are available, namely UCD (Universal Compression Dissimilarity, NCD (Normalized Compression Dissimilarity and CD (Compression Dissimilarity. Their applicability and robustness is tested on various data sets yielding a first massive quantitative estimate that the USM methodology and its approximations are of value. Despite the rich theory developed around USM, its experimental assessment has limitations: only a few data compressors have been tested in conjunction with USM and mostly at a qualitative level, no comparison among UCD, NCD and CD is available and no comparison of USM with existing methods, both based on alignments and not, seems to be available. Results We experimentally test the USM methodology by using 25 compressors, all three of its known approximations and six data sets of relevance to Molecular Biology. This offers the first systematic and quantitative experimental assessment of this methodology, that naturally complements the many theoretical and the preliminary experimental results available. Moreover, we compare the USM methodology both with methods based on alignments and not. We may group our experiments into two sets. The first one, performed via ROC

  13. Compression-based classification of biological sequences and structures via the Universal Similarity Metric: experimental assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferragina, Paolo; Giancarlo, Raffaele; Greco, Valentina; Manzini, Giovanni; Valiente, Gabriel

    2007-07-13

    Similarity of sequences is a key mathematical notion for Classification and Phylogenetic studies in Biology. It is currently primarily handled using alignments. However, the alignment methods seem inadequate for post-genomic studies since they do not scale well with data set size and they seem to be confined only to genomic and proteomic sequences. Therefore, alignment-free similarity measures are actively pursued. Among those, USM (Universal Similarity Metric) has gained prominence. It is based on the deep theory of Kolmogorov Complexity and universality is its most novel striking feature. Since it can only be approximated via data compression, USM is a methodology rather than a formula quantifying the similarity of two strings. Three approximations of USM are available, namely UCD (Universal Compression Dissimilarity), NCD (Normalized Compression Dissimilarity) and CD (Compression Dissimilarity). Their applicability and robustness is tested on various data sets yielding a first massive quantitative estimate that the USM methodology and its approximations are of value. Despite the rich theory developed around USM, its experimental assessment has limitations: only a few data compressors have been tested in conjunction with USM and mostly at a qualitative level, no comparison among UCD, NCD and CD is available and no comparison of USM with existing methods, both based on alignments and not, seems to be available. We experimentally test the USM methodology by using 25 compressors, all three of its known approximations and six data sets of relevance to Molecular Biology. This offers the first systematic and quantitative experimental assessment of this methodology, that naturally complements the many theoretical and the preliminary experimental results available. Moreover, we compare the USM methodology both with methods based on alignments and not. We may group our experiments into two sets. The first one, performed via ROC (Receiver Operating Curve) analysis, aims at

  14. Silver nanoparticles in complex biological media: assessment of colloidal stability and protein corona formation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Argentiere, Simona, E-mail: simona.argentiere@fondazionefilarete.com; Cella, Claudia, E-mail: claudia.cella@unimi.it [Fondazione Filarete (Italy); Cesaria, Maura, E-mail: maura.cesaria@le.infn.it [Università del Salento, Dipartimento di Matematica e Fisica “Ennio De Giorgi” (Italy); Milani, Paolo, E-mail: paolo.milani@mi.infn.it; Lenardi, Cristina, E-mail: cristina.lenardi@mi.infn.it [Università degli Studi di Milano, CIMAINA and Dipartimento di Fisica (Italy)

    2016-08-15

    Engineered silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are among the most used nanomaterials in consumer products, therefore concerns are raised about their potential for adverse effects in humans and environment. Although an increasing number of studies in vitro and in vivo are being reported on the toxicity of AgNPs, most of them suffer from incomplete characterization of AgNPs in the tested biological media. As a consequence, the comparison of toxicological data is troublesome and the toxicity evaluation still remains an open critical issue. The development of a reliable protocol to evaluate interactions of AgNPs with surrounding proteins as well as to assess their colloidal stability is therefore required. In this regard, it is of importance not only to use multiple, easy-to-access and simple techniques but also to understand limitations of each characterization methods. In this work, the morphological and structural behaviour of AgNPs has been studied in two relevant biological media, namely 10 % FBS and MP. Three different techniques (Dynamic Light Scattering, Transmission Electron Microscopy, UV–Vis spectroscopy) were tested for their suitability in detecting AgNPs of three different sizes (10, 40 and 100 nm) coated with either citrate or polyvinylpyrrolidone. Results showed that UV–Vis spectroscopy is the most versatile and informative technique to gain information about interaction between AgNPs and surrounding proteins and to determine their colloidal stability in the tested biological media. These findings are expected to provide useful insights in characterizing AgNPs before performing any further in vitro/in vivo experiment.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cross, S.

    1998-12-31

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

  16. Assessment of the biological and chemical availability of the freshly spiked and aged DDE in soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Škulcová, L.; Neuwirthová, N.; Hofman, J.; Bielská, L.

    2016-01-01

    The study compared the ability of various chemical methods (XAD, β-hydroxypropylcyclodextrin - HPCD) and solid phase micro-extraction (SPME)) to mimic earthworm uptake from two similar soils containing either spiked or aged p,p´-DDE, thus representing two extreme scenarios with regard to the length of pollutant-soil contact time and the way of contamination. The extent of bioaccumulation was assessed at fixed exposure periods (10 and 21 days) and at equilibrium derived from uptake curves by multiple-point comparison or kinetic modeling. The decision on the best chemical predictor of biological uptake differed. The degree of bioaccumulation at equilibrium was best predicted by XAD while HPCD rather reflected the extent of accumulation derived after 21 days when, however, steady-state was not reached for spiked p,p´-DDE. SPME seemed to underestimate the uptake of aged p,p´-DDE, probably of the fraction taken up via soil particles. Thus, the degree of predictability seems to be associated with the capability of the chemical method to mimic the complex earthworm uptake via skin and intestinal tract as well as with the quality of biological data where the insufficient length of exposure period appears to be the major concern. - Highlights: • The uptake kinetics of spiked and aged p,p´-DDE to earthworms/samplers was measured. • Three chemical methods were used to predict earthworm uptake. • Equilibrium was not reached within the OECD recommended 21 days for spiked p,p´-DDE. • SPME seems to underestimate the uptake of aged p,p´-DDE. • The best predictor of earthworm uptake seems to be the XAD method. - Capsule: The poor prediction of biological uptake by chemical methods may result from the absence of kinetic measurements and application of short exposure periods.

  17. Computational Assessment of Pharmacokinetics and Biological Effects of Some Anabolic and Androgen Steroids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roman, Marin; Roman, Diana Larisa; Ostafe, Vasile; Ciorsac, Alecu; Isvoran, Adriana

    2018-02-05

    The aim of this study is to use computational approaches to predict the ADME-Tox profiles, pharmacokinetics, molecular targets, biological activity spectra and side/toxic effects of 31 anabolic and androgen steroids in humans. The following computational tools are used: (i) FAFDrugs4, SwissADME and admetSARfor obtaining the ADME-Tox profiles and for predicting pharmacokinetics;(ii) SwissTargetPrediction and PASS online for predicting the molecular targets and biological activities; (iii) PASS online, Toxtree, admetSAR and Endocrine Disruptomefor envisaging the specific toxicities; (iv) SwissDock to assess the interactions of investigated steroids with cytochromes involved in drugs metabolism. Investigated steroids usually reveal a high gastrointestinal absorption and a good oral bioavailability, may inhibit someof the human cytochromes involved in the metabolism of xenobiotics (CYP2C9 being the most affected) and reflect a good capacity for skin penetration. There are predicted numerous side effects of investigated steroids in humans: genotoxic carcinogenicity, hepatotoxicity, cardiovascular, hematotoxic and genitourinary effects, dermal irritations, endocrine disruption and reproductive dysfunction. These results are important to be known as an occupational exposure to anabolic and androgenic steroids at workplaces may occur and because there also is a deliberate human exposure to steroids for their performance enhancement and anti-aging properties.

  18. Mass balance to assess the efficiency of a mechanical-biological treatment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Araujo Morais, J. de; Ducom, G.; Achour, F.; Rouez, M.; Bayard, R.

    2008-01-01

    Using mechanical-biological treatment of residual municipal solid waste, it is possible to significantly lower landfill volume and gas and leachate emissions. Moreover, the landfill characteristics are improved. The performance of the Mende (France) mechanical-biological treatment plant is assessed via mass balances coupled with manual sorting according to the MODECOM TM methodology and biochemical methane potential after 90 days of incubation. The site includes mechanical sorting operations, a rotary sequential bioreactor, controlled aerobic stabilisation corridors, maturation platforms, and a sanitary landfill site for waste disposal in separated cells. Results showed that several steps could be improved: after a first sieving step, about 12% of the potentially biodegradable matter is landfilled directly without any treatment; mechanical disintegration of papers and cardboards in the rotary sequential bioreactor is insufficient and leads to a high proportion of papers and cardboards being landfilled without further treatment. Two fine fractions go through stabilisation and maturation steps. At the end of the maturation step, about 54% of the potentially biodegradable matter is degraded. The biochemical methane potential after 90 days of incubation is reduced by 81% for one of the two fine fractions and reduced by 88% for the other one. Considering the whole plant, there is a reduction of nearly 20% DM of the entering residual municipal solid waste

  19. Biological assessment of contaminated land using earthworm biomarkers in support of chemical analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hankard, Peter K.; Svendsen, Claus; Wright, Julian; Wienberg, Claire; Fishwick, Samantha K.; Spurgeon, David J.; Weeks, Jason M.

    2004-01-01

    Biological indicators can be used to assess polluted sites but their success depends on the availability of suitable assays. The aim of this study was to investigate the performance of two earthworm biomarkers, lysosomal membrane stability measured using the neutral red retention assay (NRR-T) and the total immune activity (TIA) assay, that have previously been established as responsive to chemical exposure. Responses of the two assays were measured following in situ exposure to complexly contaminated field soils at three industrial sites as well as urban and rural controls. The industrial sites were contaminated with a range of metal (cadmium, copper, lead, zinc, nickel and cobalt) and organic (including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) contaminants, but at concentrations below the 'New Dutch List' Intervention concentrations. Exposed earthworms accumulated both metals and organic compounds at the contaminated sites, indicating that there was significant exposure. No effect on earthworm survival was found at any of the sites. Biomarker measurements, however, indicated significant effects, with lower NRR-T and TIA found in the contaminated soils when compared to the two controls. The results demonstrate that a comparison of soil pollutant concentrations with guideline values would not have unequivocally identified chemical exposure and toxic effect for soil organisms living in these soils. However, the earthworm biomarkers successfully identified significant exposure and biological effects caused by the mixture of chemicals present

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-03-01

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

  1. Formative Assessment: Using Concept Cartoon, Pupils' Drawings, and Group Discussions to Tackle Children's Ideas about Biological Inheritance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chin, Christine; Teou, Lay-Yen

    2010-01-01

    This study was carried out in the context of formative assessment where assessment and learning were integrated to enhance both teaching and learning. The purpose of the study was to: (a) identify pupils' ideas about biological inheritance through the use of a concept cartoon, pupils' drawings and talk, and (b) devise scaffolding structures that…

  2. Assessing Impacts of Climate Change on Forests: The State of Biological Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale, V. H.; Rauscher, H. M.

    1993-04-06

    Models that address the impacts to forests of climate change are reviewed by four levels of biological organization: global, regional or landscape, community, and tree. The models are compared as to their ability to assess changes in greenhouse gas flux, land use, maps of forest type or species composition, forest resource productivity, forest health, biodiversity, and wildlife habitat. No one model can address all of these impacts, but landscape transition models and regional vegetation and land-use models consider the largest number of impacts. Developing landscape vegetation dynamics models of functional groups is suggested as a means to integrate the theory of both landscape ecology and individual tree responses to climate change. Risk assessment methodologies can be adapted to deal with the impacts of climate change at various spatial and temporal scales. Four areas of research development are identified: (1) linking socioeconomic and ecologic models, (2) interfacing forest models at different scales, (3) obtaining data on susceptibility of trees and forest to changes in climate and disturbance regimes, and (4) relating information from different scales.

  3. Biological assessment for the remedial action at the chemical plant area of the Weldon Spring site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hlohowskyj, I.; Dunn, C.P.

    1992-11-01

    The Weldon Spring site in St.Charles County, Missouri, became contaminated during the 1940s through the 1960s as a result of explosives production by the US Army and uranium and thorium processing by the predecessor agency of the US Department of Energy (DOE). The site is listed on the National Priorities List of the US Environmental Protection Agency, and DOE is responsible for its cleanup. Contaminants are present in soil, surface water, and aquatic sediments. Alternatives identified for site remediation are no action (included as baseline for comparison), treatment and disposal of the wastes at the Weldon Spring site, and on-site treatment followed by off-site disposal at either a commercial facility near Clive, Utah, or at DOE`s Hanford site near Richland, Washington. In accordance with the requirements of the Endangered Species Act, this biological assessment has been prepared to evaluate the potential effects of proposed remedial action alternatives on federal listed (endangered or threatened) and candidate species at the respective sites. The assessment includes consideration of the environmental setting at each site; the federal listed and candidate species that could occur at each site; the construction, excavation, and treatment activities under each alternative; and the amount of land area affected at each site.

  4. Indicative and complementary effects of human biological indicators for heavy metal exposure assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xing, Ruiya; Li, Yonghua; Zhang, Biao; Li, Hairong; Liao, Xiaoyong

    2017-10-01

    Although human biological indicators have been widely utilized for biomonitoring environmental pollutants in health exposure assessment, the relationship between internal and external exposure has not yet been adequately established. In this study, we collected and analyzed 61 rice, 56 pepper, and 58 soil samples, together with 107 hair, 107 blood, and 107 urine samples from residents living in selected intensive mining areas in China. Concentrations of most of the four elements considered (Pb, Cd, Hg, and Se) exceeded national standards, implying high exposure risk in the study areas. Regression analysis also revealed a correlation (0.33, P human hair (as well as in human blood); to some extent, Pb content in hair and blood could therefore be used to characterize external Pb exposure. The correlation between Hg in rice and in human hair (up to 0.5, P human hair for Hg exposure. A significant correlation was also noted between concentrations of some elements in different human samples, for example, between Hg in hair and blood (0.641, P assessing heavy metal exposure.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-04-01

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

  6. Biological assessment for the remedial action at the chemical plant area of the Weldon Spring site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hlohowskyj, I.; Dunn, C.P.

    1992-11-01

    The Weldon Spring site in St.Charles County, Missouri, became contaminated during the 1940s through the 1960s as a result of explosives production by the US Army and uranium and thorium processing by the predecessor agency of the US Department of Energy (DOE). The site is listed on the National Priorities List of the US Environmental Protection Agency, and DOE is responsible for its cleanup. Contaminants are present in soil, surface water, and aquatic sediments. Alternatives identified for site remediation are no action (included as baseline for comparison), treatment and disposal of the wastes at the Weldon Spring site, and on-site treatment followed by off-site disposal at either a commercial facility near Clive, Utah, or at DOE's Hanford site near Richland, Washington. In accordance with the requirements of the Endangered Species Act, this biological assessment has been prepared to evaluate the potential effects of proposed remedial action alternatives on federal listed (endangered or threatened) and candidate species at the respective sites. The assessment includes consideration of the environmental setting at each site; the federal listed and candidate species that could occur at each site; the construction, excavation, and treatment activities under each alternative; and the amount of land area affected at each site.

  7. 75 FR 69396 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Arundo donax

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-11-12

    ... Biological Control Agent for Arundo donax AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA. ACTION... alternatives to, the release of Arundo scale into the continental United States for use as a biological control... a biological control agent to reduce the severity of Arundo donax infestations. A. donax is a highly...

  8. 75 FR 64984 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment for a Biological Control Agent for Hawkweeds

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-21

    ... hawkweed gall wasp, Aulacidea subterminalis, into the continental United States as a biological control... United States for the biological control of hawkweeds (Hieracium pilosella, H. aurantiacum, H... control, and the use of biological control organisms. The use of herbicides, while effective, is limited...

  9. Horns Rev offshore wind farm. Environmental impact assessment of sea bottom and marine biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leonhard, S.B.

    2000-03-15

    An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of a planned 150 MW offshore wind farm at Horns Rev has been carried out for the marine biology and sea bottom in the area, and includes vegetation and benthic fauna. The study forms part of a total EIA of the planned offshore wind farm. This EIA study has been drawn up in accordance with the guidelines laid down by the Ministry of Environment and Energy in the publication, 'Guidelines for preparation of EIAstudies for offshore wind farms. Horns Rev is situated off Blaevands Huk, which is Denmark's most westerly point. It is a shallow reef with water depths between 2 and 9 metres and is primarily composed of sand, gravel and pebbles. The area designated for the wind farm lies directly south of Horns Rev and is dominated by sand with a median particle size of 0.3 mm. Along the edges, towards areas of greater depth, the particle size increases. There are areas of fine sand in the deepest area, and in isolated pockets within the proposed wind farm site. The sediment is characterised by a very low (<1%) organic matter content. On the basis of the expected impact from the establishment of the wind farm, it is not deemed necessary to carry out special programmes during the construction phase for monitoring of the environmental-biological conditions. A monitoring and control programme is recommended during the production phase in order to follow the copper concentration in bivalves, or alternatively to initiate recovery or elimination of the copper-laden waste. A control programme is recommended during the production phase in order to follow the establishment and succession of the fouling community on the wind turbine foundations and scour-protecting revetments. (BA)

  10. Environmental risk assessment for Neodryinus typhlocybae, biological control agent against Metcalfa pruinosa, for Austria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gudrun Strauss

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The potential environmental risks of Neodryinus typhlocybae, a parasitic wasp from North America, were evaluated with regard to its safe use as an exotic biocontrol agent for the planthopper Metcalfa pruinosa in Austria. Following an earlier host range study of N. typhlocybae conducted in the laboratory, the present study assessed the potential for establishment and spread as well as negative indirect effects on non-target organisms. The potential release sites in Austria were analysed for matching of the climatic requirements for establishment of N. typhlocybae. The two proposed release locations, Vienna and Graz, have a predominantly similar climate to the parasitoid’s region of origin, though the comparably cooler mean summer temperatures might result in a low emergence rate of the partial second generation. The natural spread potential of N. typhlocybae was reviewed and is considered to be sufficiently good for released individuals to reach nearby sites infested with M. pruinosa. However, a perceptible spreading of N. typhlocybae females only occurs a few years after release and seems to be strongly dependent on the host density. Gelis areator, a hyperparasitoid of N. typhlocybae known to occur in Austria, might have negative effects on the population of the beneficial organism. Advantages and disadvantages of chemical and biological control methods against M. pruinosa were evaluated. It is concluded that N. typhlocybae is very well suited as a biological control agent for M. pruinosa in Austria, as no adverse effects on non-target species are expected but its release offers advantages with regard to sustainable and environmentally friendly pest management.

  11. Horns Rev offshore wind farm. Environmental impact assessment of sea bottom and marine biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leonhard, S B

    2000-03-15

    An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of a planned 150 MW offshore wind farm at Horns Rev has been carried out for the marine biology and sea bottom in the area, and includes vegetation and benthic fauna. The study forms part of a total EIA of the planned offshore wind farm. This EIA study has been drawn up in accordance with the guidelines laid down by the Ministry of Environment and Energy in the publication, 'Guidelines for preparation of EIAstudies for offshore wind farms. Horns Rev is situated off Blaevands Huk, which is Denmark's most westerly point. It is a shallow reef with water depths between 2 and 9 metres and is primarily composed of sand, gravel and pebbles. The area designated for the wind farm lies directly south of Horns Rev and is dominated by sand with a median particle size of 0.3 mm. Along the edges, towards areas of greater depth, the particle size increases. There are areas of fine sand in the deepest area, and in isolated pockets within the proposed wind farm site. The sediment is characterised by a very low (<1%) organic matter content. On the basis of the expected impact from the establishment of the wind farm, it is not deemed necessary to carry out special programmes during the construction phase for monitoring of the environmental-biological conditions. A monitoring and control programme is recommended during the production phase in order to follow the copper concentration in bivalves, or alternatively to initiate recovery or elimination of the copper-laden waste. A control programme is recommended during the production phase in order to follow the establishment and succession of the fouling community on the wind turbine foundations and scour-protecting revetments. (BA)

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1997-01-01

    Air and biological monitoring were used for assessing external and internal chromium exposure among 116 stainless steel welders (SS welders) using manual metal arc (MMA), metal inert gas (MIG) and tungsten inert gas (TIG) welding processes (MMA: n = 57; MIG: n = 37; TIG: n = 22) and 30 mild steel welders (MS welders) using MMA and MIG welding processes (MMA: n = 14; MIG: n = 16). The levels of atmospheric total chromium were evaluated after personal air monitoring. The mean values for the different groups of SS welders were 201 micrograms/m3 (MMA) and 185 micrograms/m3 (MIG), 52 micrograms/m3 (TIG) and for MS welders 8.1 micrograms/m3 (MMA) and 7.3 micrograms/m3 (MIG). The curve of cumulative frequency distribution from biological monitoring among SS welders showed chromium geometric mean concentrations in whole blood of 3.6 micrograms/l (95th percentile = 19.9), in plasma of 3.3 micrograms/l (95th percentile = 21.0) and in urine samples of 6.2 micrograms/l (95th percentile = 58.0). Among MS welders, mean values in whole blood and plasma were rather more scattered (1.8 micrograms/l, 95th percentile = 9.3 and 1.3 micrograms/l, 95th percentile = 8.4, respectively) and in urine the value was 2.4 micrograms/l (95th percentile = 13.3). The analysis of variance of chromium concentrations in plasma previously showed a metal effect (F = 29.7, P process effect (F = 22.2, P process interaction (F = 1.3, P = 0.25). Concerning urinary chromium concentration, the analysis of variance also showed a metal effect (F = 30, P process effect (F = 72, P process interaction (F = 13.2, P = 0.0004). Throughout the study we noted any significant differences between smokers and non-smokers among welders. Taking in account the relationships between chromium concentrations in whole, plasma or urine and the different welding process. MMA-SS is definitely different from other processes because the biological values are clearly higher. These higher levels are due to the very significant

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-10-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  16. Biological Activity Assessment in Mexican Tropical Soils with Different Hydrocarbon Contamination Histories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riveroll-Larios, Jessica; Escalante-Espinosa, Erika; Fócil-Monterrubio, Reyna L; Díaz-Ramírez, Ildefonso J

    The use of soil health indicators linked to microbial activities, such as key enzymes and respirometric profiles, helps assess the natural attenuation potential of soils contaminated with hydrocarbons. In this study, the intrinsic physicochemical characteristics, biological activity and biodegradation potential were recorded for two soils with different contamination histories (>5 years and soil samples. Soil suspensions were tested as microbial inocula in biodegradation potential assays using contaminated perlite as an inert support. The basal respiratory rate of the recently contaminated soil was 15-38 mg C-CO 2  kg -1 h -1 , while the weathered soil presented a greater basal mineralisation capacity of 55-70 mg C-CO 2 kg -1 h -1 . The basal levels of lipase and dehydrogenase were significantly greater than those recorded in non-contaminated soils (551 ± 21 μg pNP g -1 ). Regarding the biodegradation potential assessment, the lipase (1000-3000 μg pNP g -1 of perlite) and dehydrogenase (~3000 μg INF g -1 of perlite) activities in the inoculum of the recently contaminated soil were greater than those recorded in the inoculum of the weathered soil. This was correlated with a high mineralisation rate (~30 mg C-CO 2 kg -1 h -1 ) in the recently contaminated soil and a reduction in hydrocarbon concentration (~30 %). The combination of an inert support and enzymatic and respirometric analyses made it possible to detect the different biodegradation capacities of the studied inocula and the natural attenuation potential of a recently contaminated soil at high hydrocarbon concentrations.

  17. Host cell proteins in biologics development: Identification, quantitation and risk assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xing; Hunter, Alan K; Mozier, Ned M

    2009-06-15

    Host cell proteins (HCPs) are those produced or encoded by the organisms and unrelated to the intended recombinant product. Some are necessary for growth, survival, and normal cellular processing whereas others may be non-essential, simply carried along as baggage. Like the recombinant product, HCPs may also be modified by the host with a number of post-translational modifications. Regardless of the utility, or lack thereof, HCPs are undesirable in the final drug substance. Though commonly present in small quantities (parts per million expressed as nanograms per milligrams of the intended recombinant protein) much effort and cost is expended by industry to remove them. The purpose of this review is to summarize what is of relevance in regards to the biology, the impact of genomics and proteomics on HCP evaluation, the regulatory expectations, analytical approaches, and various methodologies to remove HCPs with bioprocessing. Historical data, bioinformatics approaches and industrial case study examples are provided. Finally, a proposal for a risk assessment tool is provided which brings these facets together and proposes a means for manufacturers to classify and organize a control strategy leading to meaningful product specifications. 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. The use of aquatic macrophytes in monitoring and in assessment of biological integrity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stewart, P.M.; Scribailo, R.W.; Simon, T.P.; Gerhardt, A.

    1999-01-01

    Aquatic plant species, populations, and communities should be used as indicators of the aquatic environment, allowing detection of ecosystem response to different stressors. Plant tissues bioaccumulate and concentrate toxin levels higher than what is present in the sediments; and this appears to be related to organic matter content, acidification, and buffering capacity. The majority of toxicity studies, most of these with heavy metals, have been done with several Lemna species and Vallisneria americana. Organic chemicals reviewed include pesticides and herbicides, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, polychlorinated biphenyls, and other industrial contaminants. The use of aquatic plant communities as bioindicators of environmental quality was evaluated for specific characteristics and indices that may assess biological integrity. Indices such as the floristic quality index (FQI) and coefficient of conservatism (C) are pioneering efforts to describe the quality of natural areas and protect native biodiversity. Our case study in the Grand Calumet Lagoons found that 'least-impacted' sites had the greatest aquatic plant species richness, highest FQI and C values, and highest relative abundance. Lastly, we introduce the concepts necessary for the development of a plant index of biotic integrity. Development of reference conditions is essential to understanding aquatic plant community structure, function, individual health, condition, and abundance. Information on guild development and tolerance definition are also integral to the development of a multi-metric index.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  20. Assessment of Clarias gariepinus as a biological control agent against mosquito larvae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chala, Buze; Erko, Berhanu; Animut, Abebe; Degarege, Abraham; Petros, Beyene

    2016-05-31

    The emergence and spread of insecticide resistant mosquitoes renewed interest in investigating the use of larvivorous fish as a biological control agent. The potential of Clarias gariepinus fish in controlling Anopheles arabiensis and culicine larvae was assessed under laboratory and semi-field conditions. Small size (15-20 cm) C. gariepinus fish consumed greater number of mosquito larvae than the large size fish (25-40 cm) in the multivariate regression model (β = 13.36, 95 % CI = 4.57, 22.15). The Anopheles larvae consumed was greater in number than the culicines larvae consumed by the fish (β = 12.10, 95 % CI = 3.31, 20.89). The number of larvae consumed was greater during the night hours than during the light hours (β = 30.06, 95 % CI = 21.27, 38.85). Amount of supplementary fish food did not cause significant differences in the number of mosquito larvae consumed by the fish among different groups. C. gariepinus was observed to feed on mosquito larvae under laboratory and semi-field conditions. C. gariepinus fed on the larvae of An. arabiensis and culicines readily. Hence, it can be used as an alternative mosquito control agent in Ethiopia where the breeding habitats are small and localized.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2014-07-01

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

  2. A review of the known biological characteristics of the Great Meteor East site together with a sampling programme for a biological site assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roe, H.S.J.

    1985-01-01

    Existing biological information on GME is reviewed. In common with most other oceanic areas there is very little data available from depths below 2000m. There is virtually no direct benthic information and none at all on the midwater/benthic boundary layer. Existing data from a wider geographic area are relevant to GME but the applicability of such data varies according to the hydrography. A sampling programme is outlined which will allow a comprehensive quantitative and qualitative assessment of the midwater and benthic ecosystems. Particular attention will be paid to the interactions between benthic and midwater communities just above the sea floor. (author)

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-03-01

    The biological maturity status plays an important role in sports, since it influences the performance level and the talent selection in various types of sport. More mature athletes are favorably selected for regional and national squads. Therefore, the biological maturity status should be considered during the talent selection process. In this context, the relative age effect (RAE), which exists when the relative age quarter distribution of selected sports groups shows a biased distribution with an over-representation of athletes born in the first months after the specific cut-off-date for the competition categories, represents another problem in the talent development. From an ethical point of view, discrimination of young talented kids does exist: the relatively younger athletes have little to no chance of reaching the elite level, despite their talents and efforts. The causal mechanisms behind the RAE are still unclear and have to be assessed. In this context, the biological maturation seems to be a possible influential factor for the existence of a RAE in sport, which has to be examined. Several methods for estimating the biological maturity status exist; however, they are often expensive and not practicable. Consequently, the aim of the present study was to assess the concordance of a simple, yet accurate method of estimating biological maturation (prediction equation of age at peak height velocity, APHV) of Mirwald and co-workers, and the gold standard method of estimating skeletal age (SA, the x-ray of the left wrist). In total, 75 Austrian students (40♂, 35♀) aged 10 - 13 years, were examined. Thirty of the participants (17♂, 13♀) were students of a well-known Austrian ski boarding school, and 45 (23♂, 22♀) of a non-sportive secondary modern school of the same region. The participants included in the study had not experienced a rupture of the carpal bones of the left wrist. Parents and participants were informed of the study aims

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Journal of Biological Education, 2014

    2014-01-01

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

  5. Including a Service Learning Educational Research Project in a Biology Course-I: Assessing Community Awareness of Childhood Lead Poisoning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abu-Shakra, Amal; Saliim, Eric

    2012-01-01

    A university course project was developed and implemented in a biology course, focusing on environmental problems, to assess community awareness of childhood lead poisoning. A set of 385 questionnaires was generated and distributed in an urban community in North Carolina, USA. The completed questionnaires were sorted first into yes and no sets…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nixon, Brenda Chaumont

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertolotti, Janine Cecelia

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

  8. A comparative analysis of multiple-choice and student performance-task assessment in the high school biology classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cushing, Patrick Ryan

    This study compared the performance of high school students on laboratory assessments. Thirty-four high school students who were enrolled in the second semester of a regular biology class or had completed the biology course the previous semester participated in this study. They were randomly assigned to examinations of two formats, performance-task and traditional multiple-choice, from two content areas, using a compound light microscope and diffusion. Students were directed to think-aloud as they performed the assessments. Additional verbal data were obtained during interviews following the assessment. The tape-recorded narrative data were analyzed for type and diversity of knowledge and skill categories, and percentage of in-depth processing demonstrated. While overall mean scores on the assessments were low, elicited statements provided additional insight into student cognition. Results indicated that a greater diversity of knowledge and skill categories was elicited by the two microscope assessments and by the two performance-task assessments. In addition, statements demonstrating in-depth processing were coded most frequently in narratives elicited during clinical interviews following the diffusion performance-task assessment. This study calls for individual teachers to design authentic assessment practices and apply them to daily classroom routines. Authentic assessment should be an integral part of the learning process and not merely an end result. In addition, teachers are encouraged to explicitly identify and model, through think-aloud methods, desired cognitive behaviors in the classroom.

  9. Chelating impact assessment of biological ad chemical chelates on metal extraction from contaminated soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Manwar, S.; Iram, S.

    2014-01-01

    Soil contamination is the result of uncontrolled waste dumping and poor practices by humans. Of all the pollutants heavy metals are of particular concern due to their atmospheric deposition, leaching capacity and non-biodegradability. Heavy metal containing effluent is discharged into the agricultural fields and water bodies. This results in the accumulation of heavy metals in soil and the crops grown on that soil. Studies have revealed detrimental impacts on soil fertility and the poor health of animals and humans. Phytoextraction is widely researched for remediation of heavy metal contaminated soil. To enhance the effect of phytoextraction heavy metals have to be available to the plants in soluble form. In this study the potential of different chelating agents was assessed in solubilizing the heavy metals making easy for plants to uptake them. For this purpose efficient chemical and biological chelating agent had to be identified. Along with that an optimum dose and application time for chemical chelating agent was determined. Ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid (EDTA), Diethylene triamine pentaacetic acid (DTPA), Nitriloacetic acid (NTA) were applied to the soil, containing Pb, Cr, Cu and Cd, at different concentrations and application time. Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus flavus were incubated in soil for different time periods. In correspondence with findings of the study, Pb and Cr were best solubilized by 5mM EDTA. For Cd and Cu 5mM DTPA carried out efficient chelation. NTA showed relatively inadequate solubilisation, although for Cr it performed equal to EDTA. A. niger and A. flavus instead of solubilizing adsorbed the metals in their biomass. Adsorption was mainly carried out by A. niger. (author)

  10. Limitations of the scalp-hair biologic monitor in assessing selenium status in epidemiological investigations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morris, J.S.; Spate, V.L.; Crane, S.B.; Alejandra Gudino

    2012-01-01

    Scalp hair is routinely used to assess exposure to toxic trace elements and nutritional status of some required trace elements. The advantages and disadvantages of hair as a biologic monitor have been comprehensively discussed in the literature for many years. Among the concerns is distinguishing between exogenous and endogenous contributions. Nested in this issue is the longitudinal distribution of a trace element along the hair strand. The typical observation for many elements of interest is that the element concentration increases from the root end to the distal end; and this is attributed to continuing contamination from exogenous sources. In this study we used neutron activation analysis to measure 14 trace elements in 6 mm segments of full-length scalp hair from three healthy members of the same household having light-urban environmental exposure. To extend the data set for selenium, we included three adult female subjects with longer than average scalp hair. From these trace-element concentrations we calculated the root-to-distal end ratios as a profile diagnostic of trace-element distributions. Ratios fall into three diagnostic categories, >1, ∼1, and 1, Zn and S have R ∼ 1, and the remaining 11 elements all have R I > Hg ∼ Au ∼ Mg ∼ Mn ∼ Sb ∼ Ca > Cu > Al ∼ Ag. R Se is greater than 1 and increases with hair length (P 0.02) corresponding to a continuous longitudinal loss of Se in stark and puzzling contrast to the other elements measured. An analogous loss of Se in the nail monitor was not observed leading us to conclude that the nail is less prone to misclassification of selenium status in epidemiological studies. (author)

  11. Preliminary assessment of the interaction of introduced biological agents with biofilms in water distribution systems.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sinclair, Michael B.; Caldwell, Sara; Jones, Howland D. T.; Altman, Susan Jeanne; Souza, Caroline Ann; McGrath, Lucas K.

    2005-12-01

    Basic research is needed to better understand the potential risk of dangerous biological agents that are unintentionally or intentionally introduced into a water distribution system. We report on our capabilities to conduct such studies and our preliminary investigations. In 2004, the Biofilms Laboratory was initiated for the purpose of conducting applied research related to biofilms with a focus on application, application testing and system-scale research. Capabilities within the laboratory are the ability to grow biofilms formed from known bacteria or biofilms from drinking water. Biofilms can be grown quickly in drip-flow reactors or under conditions more analogous to drinking-water distribution systems in annular reactors. Biofilms can be assessed through standard microbiological techniques (i .e, aerobic plate counts) or with various visualization techniques including epifluorescent and confocal laser scanning microscopy and confocal fluorescence hyperspectral imaging with multivariate analysis. We have demonstrated the ability to grow reproducible Pseudomonas fluorescens biofilms in the annular reactor with plate counts on the order of 10{sup 5} and 10{sup 6} CFU/cm{sup 2}. Stationary phase growth is typically reached 5 to 10 days after inoculation. We have also conducted a series of pathogen-introduction experiments, where we have observed that both polystyrene microspheres and Bacillus cereus (as a surrogate for B. anthracis) stay incorporated in the biofilms for the duration of our experiments, which lasted as long as 36 days. These results indicated that biofilms may act as a safe harbor for bio-pathogens in drinking water systems, making it difficult to decontaminate the systems.

  12. A combined chemical and biological assessment of industrial contamination in an estuarine system in Kerala, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dsikowitzky, Larissa; Nordhaus, Inga; Sujatha, C H; Akhil, P S; Soman, Kunjupilai; Schwarzbauer, Jan

    2014-07-01

    The Cochin Backwaters in India are part of the Vembanad-Kol system, which is a protected wetland and one of the largest estuarine ecosystems in South Asia. The backwaters are a major supplier of fisheries resources and are developed as tourist destination. Periyar River discharges into the northern arm of the system and receives effluents from chemical, petrochemical and metal processing industries which release huge amounts of wastewaters after little treatment. We investigated water and sediment contamination in the industrial vicinity and at one station further away including organic and inorganic contaminants. In total 83 organic contaminants were found, e.g. well known priority pollutants such as endosulfan, hexachlorobenzene, DDT, hexachlorocyclohexane and their metabolites, which likely stem from the industrial manufacturing of organochlorine pesticides. Furthermore, several benzothiazole, dibenzylamine and dicyclohexylamine derivatives were detected, which indicated inputs from rubber producing facilities. Several of these compounds have not been reported as environmental contaminants so far. A comparison of organic contaminant and trace hazardous element concentrations in sediments with reported sediment quality guidelines revealed that adverse effects on benthic species are likely at all stations. The chemical assessment was combined with an investigation of macrobenthic diversity and community composition. Benthic organisms were completely lacking at the site with the highest trace hazardous element concentrations. Highest species numbers, diversity indices and abundances were recorded at the station with the greatest distance to the industrial area. Filter feeders were nearly completely lacking, probably leading to an impairment of the filter function in this area. This study shows that a combination of chemical and biological methods is an innovative approach to achieve a comprehensive characterization of industrial contamination, to evaluate

  13. Instream Biological Assessment of NPDES Point Source Discharges at the Savannah River Site, 2000

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Specht, W.L.

    2001-01-01

    The Savannah River Site (SRS) currently has 31 NPDES outfalls that have been permitted by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) to discharge to SRS streams and the Savannah River. In order to determine the cumulative impacts of these discharges to the receiving streams, a study plan was developed to perform in-stream assessments of the fish assemblages, macroinvertebrate assemblages, and habitats of the receiving streams. These studies were designed to detect biological impacts due to point source discharges. Sampling was initially conducted between November 1997 and July 1998 and was repeated in the summer and fall of 2000. A total of 18 locations were sampled (Table 1, Figure 1). Sampling locations for fish and macroinvertebrates were generally the same. However, different locations were sampled for fish (Road A-2) and macroinvertebrates (Road C) in the lower portion of Upper Three Runs, to avoid interference with ongoing fisheries studies at Road C. Also, fish were sampled in Fourmile Branch at Road 4 rather than at Road F because the stream at Road F was too narrow and shallow to support many fish. Sampling locations and parameters are detailed in Sections 2 and 3 of this report. In general, sampling locations were selected that would permit comparisons upstream and downstream of NPDES outfalls. In instances where this approach was not feasible because effluents discharge into the headwaters of a stream, appropriate unimpacted reference were used for comparison purposes. This report summarizes the results of the sampling that was conducted in 2000 and also compares these data to the data that were collected in 1997 and 1998

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O.V. Martyniuk

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: to assess students’ health condition by indicators of adaptation potential, biological age and express-assessment. Material: in the research 47 first and second year girl students participated, who belonged to main health group. Results: we distributed the girl students into three groups: 14.89% of them were included in group with “safe” health condition; 34.04% - in group of “third state”; 51.06% were related to group with “ dangerous” health condition. We established that dangerous level was characterized by energy potential of below middle and low level. It is accompanied by accelerated processes of organism’s age destructions and tension of regulation mechanisms. Conclusions: the received results permit to further develop and generalize the data of students’ health’s assessment by indicators of adaptation potentials, biological age and physical health’s condition.

  15. Interpreting stress responses during routine toxicity studies: a review of the biology, impact, and assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Everds, Nancy E; Snyder, Paul W; Bailey, Keith L; Bolon, Brad; Creasy, Dianne M; Foley, George L; Rosol, Thomas J; Sellers, Teresa

    2013-01-01

    Stress often occurs during toxicity studies. The perception of sensory stimuli as stressful primarily results in catecholamine release and activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis to increase serum glucocorticoid concentrations. Downstream effects of these neuroendocrine signals may include decreased total body weights or body weight gain; food consumption and activity; altered organ weights (e.g., thymus, spleen, adrenal); lymphocyte depletion in thymus and spleen; altered circulating leukocyte counts (e.g., increased neutrophils with decreased lymphocytes and eosinophils); and altered reproductive functions. Typically, only some of these findings occur in a given study. Stress responses should be interpreted as secondary (indirect) rather than primary (direct) test article-related findings. Determining whether effects are the result of stress requires a weight-of-evidence approach. The evaluation and interpretation of routinely collected data (standard in-life, clinical pathology, and anatomic pathology endpoints) are appropriate and generally sufficient to assess whether or not changes are secondary to stress. The impact of possible stress-induced effects on data interpretation can partially be mitigated by toxicity study designs that use appropriate control groups (e.g., cohorts treated with vehicle and subjected to the same procedures as those dosed with test article), housing that minimizes isolation and offers environmental enrichment, and experimental procedures that minimize stress and sampling and analytical bias. This article is a comprehensive overview of the biological aspects of the stress response, beginning with a Summary (Section 1) and an Introduction (Section 2) that describes the historical and conventional methods used to characterize acute and chronic stress responses. These sections are followed by reviews of the primary systems and parameters that regulate and/or are influenced by stress, with an emphasis on parameters

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strayer, Richard; Garland, Jay; Janine, Captain

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lazar Bireescu

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The main objective of sustainable agriculture is the protection of environment and natural vegetal and soil resources. Accordingly, the objective of this research was to assess the impact of technological systems by minimum tillage on soil biological activity, using the Pedo-Biological Diagnosis of Soil Resources. Our research was conducted on haplic chernozem from Experimental Station of UASVM of Iasi, Romania, during the seasonal dynamic, to the soybean crop, on unfertilized and fertilized agrofond, using moderate mineral doses (N80P80 as average of 2009–2010 period, under minimum tillage (2x disk, paraplow, chisel compared to conventional (plugging at 20 cm and 30 cm. In the case of soil works with chisel and paraplow without return of furrow, the Pedo-Biological Diagnosis highlights an increase of soil physiological potential, in the both variants (unfertilized and fertilized, unlike the method of alternating the depth of plugging that proved to be ineffective.

  18. Integrative assessment of Evolutionary theory acceptance and knowledge levels of Biology undergraduate students from a Brazilian university

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tavares, Gustavo Medina; Bobrowski, Vera Lucia

    2018-03-01

    The integrative role that Evolutionary theory plays within Biology is recognised by most scientific authors, as well as in governmental education policies, including Brazilian policies. However, teaching and learning evolution seems problematic in many countries, and Brazil is among those. Many factors may affect teachers' and students' perceptions towards evolution, and studies can help to reveal those factors. We used a conceptual questionnaire, the Measure of Acceptance of the Theory of Evolution (MATE) instrument, and a Knowledge test to assess (1) the level of acceptance and understanding of 23 undergraduate Biology students nearing the end of their course, (2) other factors that could affect these levels, including course structure, and (3) the most difficult topics regarding evolutionary biology. The results of this study showed that the students, on average, had a 'Very High Acceptance' (89.91) and a 'Very Low Knowledge' (59.42%) of Evolutionary theory, and also indicated a moderate positive correlation between the two (r = 0.66, p = .001). The most difficult topics were related to the definition of evolution and dating techniques. We believe that the present study provides evidence for policymakers to reformulate current school and university curricula in order to improve the teachers' acceptance and understanding of evolution and other biological concepts, consequently, helping students reduce their misconceptions related to evolutionary biology.

  19. [The safety of biologics : a risk-benefit assessment of treating rheumatoid arthritis with biologics based on registry data on mortality].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sander, O

    2010-11-01

    The aim of this study is a risk-benefit assessment of treating rheumatoid arthritis with biologics based on registry data on mortality.UK, Sweden and Spain have published evaluable data on mortality. A parallel control group was conducted in the UK. Sweden and Spain used an historical cohort for comparison.Central registries supported British and Swedish research by sending details on all deaths. The variety of possible confounders prevents direct comparisons of the registers and safe predictions for individual patients.The death rate in TNF-inhibitor-treated patients is higher than in the general population but lower than in the control groups with RA. Thus comorbidities are not balanced, the weighted mortality rate scaled down the difference between exposed patients and controls. When TNF-inhibitors are given for the usual indication, mortality is reduced compared to conventional therapy.

  20. Human exposure to radiation following the release of radioactivity from a reactor accident: a quantitative assessment of the biological consequences

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, H.; Stather, J.W.

    1976-11-01

    The objective of this review is to provide a biological basis upon which to assess the consequences of the exposure of a population to radioactivity released after a reactor accident. Depending upon the radiation dose, both early and late somatic damage could occur in the exposed population and hereditary effects may occur in their descendants. The development of dose-effect relationships has been based upon the limited amount of information available on humans, supplemented by data obtained from experiments on animals. (author)

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frederiksen, C.B.; Lomholt, Anne Fog; Lottenburger, Tine

    2008-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases-1 (TIMP-1) measurements in plasma may be useful for the early detection and prognosis of colorectal cancer (CRC). Data on analytical performance and normal intra- and interindividual biological variation are required in order to interpret...... the utility of TIMP-1 in CRC. The aim of this study was to establish the biological and analytical variation of plasma TIMP-1 in volunteers. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Three separate studies were undertaken. 1: Plasma was collected from 23 volunteers 6 times within a 3-week period, first in September 2004 (round...

  2. SYMBIOSIS: development, implementation, and assessment of a model curriculum across biology and mathematics at the introductory level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Depelteau, Audrey M; Joplin, Karl H; Govett, Aimee; Miller, Hugh A; Seier, Edith

    2010-01-01

    "It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power." Alan Cohen (Used by permission. All rights reserved. For more information on Alan Cohen's books and programs, see (www.alancohen.com.) With the support of the East Tennessee State University (ETSU) administration and a grant from Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the departments of Biological Sciences, Mathematics and Statistics, and Curriculum and Instruction have developed a biology-math integrated curriculum. An interdisciplinary faculty team, charged with teaching the 18 curriculum modules, designed this three-semester curriculum, known as SYMBIOSIS. This curriculum was piloted to two student cohorts during the developmental stage. The positive feedback and assessment results of this project have given us the foundation to implement the SYMBIOSIS curriculum as a replacement for the standard biology majors curriculum at the introductory level. This article addresses the history and development of the curriculum, previous assessment results and current assessment protocol, and the future of ETSU's approach to implementing the SYMBIOSIS curriculum.

  3. The Biological Rhythms Interview of Assessment in Neuropsychiatry in patients with bipolar disorder: correlation with affective temperaments and schizotypy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ewa Dopierala

    Full Text Available Objective: To assess the relationship of biological rhythms, evaluated by the Biological Rhythms Interview of Assessment in Neuropsychiatry (BRIAN, with affective temperaments and schizotypy. Methods: The BRIAN assessment, along with the Temperament Evaluation of Memphis, Pisa, Paris, and San Diego-Autoquestionnaire (TEMPS-A and the Oxford-Liverpool Inventory for Feelings and Experiences (O-LIFE, was administered to 54 patients with remitted bipolar disorder (BD and 54 healthy control (HC subjects. Results: The TEMPS-A cyclothymic temperament correlated positively and the hyperthymic temperament correlated negatively with BRIAN scores in both the BD and HC groups, although the correlation was stronger in BD subjects. Depressive temperament was associated with BRIAN scores in BD but not in HC; conversely, the irritable temperament was associated with BRIAN scores in HC, but not in BD. Several positive correlations between BRIAN scores and the schizotypal dimensions of the O-LIFE were observed in both BD and HC subjects, especially with cognitive disorganization and less so with unusual experiences and impulsive nonconformity. A correlation with introversion/anhedonia was found only in BD subjects. Conclusion: Cyclothymic and depressive temperaments predispose to disturbances of biological rhythms in BD, while a hyperthymic temperament can be protective. Similar predispositions were also found for all schizotypal dimensions, mostly for cognitive disorganization.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2007-11-01

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

  5. Using consumption rate to assess potential predators for biological control of white perch

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gosch N.J.C.

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Control of undesirable fishes is important in aquatic systems, and using predation as a tool for biological control is an attractive option to fishery biologists. However, determining the appropriate predators for biological control is critical for success. The objective of this study was to evaluate the utility of consumption rate as an index to determine the most effective predators for biological control of an invasive fish. Consumption rate values were calculated for nine potential predators that prey on white perch Morone americana in Branched Oak and Pawnee reservoirs, Nebraska. The consumption rate index provided a unique and insightful means of determining the potential effectiveness of each predator species in controlling white perch. Cumulative frequency distributions facilitated interpretation by providing a graphical presentation of consumption rates by all individuals within each predator species. Largemouth bass Micropterus salmoides, walleye Sander vitreus and sauger S. canadensis were the most efficient white perch predators in both reservoirs; however, previous attempts to increase biomass of these predators have failed suggesting that successful biological control is unlikely using existing predator species in these Nebraska reservoirs.

  6. Assessment of Student Learning Associated with Tree Thinking in an Undergraduate Introductory Organismal Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

    Phylogenetic trees provide visual representations of ancestor-descendant relationships, a core concept of evolutionary theory. We introduced "tree thinking" into our introductory organismal biology course (freshman/sophomore majors) to help teach organismal diversity within an evolutionary framework. Our instructional strategy consisted…

  7. Assessing risks and benefits of floral supplements in conservation biological control

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Winkler, K.; Wackers, F.L.; Termorshuizen, A.J.; Lenteren, van J.C.

    2010-01-01

    The use of flowering field margins is often proposed as a method to support biological control in agro-ecosystems. In addition to beneficial insects, many herbivores depend on floral food as well. The indiscriminate use of flowering species in field margins can therefore lead to higher pest numbers.

  8. Is 'class effect' relevant when assessing the benefit/risk profile of a biologic agent?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sterry, W.; Kerkhof, P.C.M. van de

    2012-01-01

    Psoriasis is a chronic, genetically predisposed skin disorder, characterised by thickened scaly plaques. Although no therapy is recognised as curative, therapies aimed at symptom control include biologic agents that are generally designed to block molecular activation of cellular pathways of a

  9. Students' Use of Optional Online Reviews and Its Relationship to Summative Assessment Outcomes in Introductory Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carpenter, Shana K.; Rahman, Shuhebur; Lund, Terry J. S.; Armstrong, Patrick I.; Lamm, Monica H.; Reason, Robert D.; Coffman, Clark R.

    2017-01-01

    Retrieval practice has been shown to produce significant enhancements in student learning of course information, but the extent to which students make use of retrieval to learn information on their own is unclear. In the current study, students in a large introductory biology course were provided with optional online review questions that could be…

  10. An in vivo model to assess magnesium alloys and their biological effect on human bone marrow stromal cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshizawa, Sayuri; Chaya, Amy; Verdelis, Kostas; Bilodeau, Elizabeth A; Sfeir, Charles

    2015-12-01

    Magnesium (Mg) alloys have many unique qualities which make them ideal candidates for bone fixation devices, including biocompatibility and degradation in vivo. Despite a rise in Mg alloy production and research, there remains no standardized system to assess their degradation or biological effect on human stem cells in vivo. In this study, we developed a novel in vivo model to assess Mg alloys for craniofacial and orthopedic applications. Our model consists of a collagen sponge seeded with human bone marrow stromal cells (hBMSCs) around a central Mg alloy rod. These scaffolds were implanted subcutaneously in mice and analyzed after eight weeks. Alloy degradation and biological effect were determined by microcomputed tomography (microCT), histological staining, and immunohistochemistry (IHC). MicroCT showed greater volume loss for pure Mg compared to AZ31 after eight weeks in vivo. Histological analysis showed that hBMSCs were retained around the Mg implants after 8 weeks. Furthermore, immunohistochemistry showed the expression of dentin matrix protein 1 and osteopontin around both pure Mg and AZ31 with implanted hBMSCs. In addition, histological sections showed a thin mineral layer around all degrading alloys at the alloy-tissue interface. In conclusion, our data show that degrading pure Mg and AZ31 implants are cytocompatible and do not inhibit the osteogenic property of hBMSCs in vivo. These results demonstrate that this model can be used to efficiently assess the biological effect of corroding Mg alloys in vivo. Importantly, this model may be modified to accommodate additional cell types and clinical applications. Magnesium (Mg) alloys have been investigated as ideal candidates for bone fixation devices due to high biocompatibility and degradation in vivo, and there is a growing need of establishing an efficient in vivo material screening system. In this study, we assessed degradation rate and biological effect of Mg alloys by transplanting Mg alloy rod with

  11. An integrated assessment of pollution and biological effects in flounder, mussels and sediment in the southern Baltic Sea coastal area.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dabrowska, Henryka; Kopko, Orest; Lehtonen, Kari K; Lang, Thomas; Waszak, Ilona; Balode, Maija; Strode, Evita

    2017-02-01

    Organic and metal contaminants and biological effects were investigated in flounder, mussels, and sediments in the southern Baltic Sea coastal area in order to assess environmental quality status in that area. Four sites were selected, including two within the Gulf of Gdańsk (GoG). In biota and sediment at each site, DDTs dominated over PCBs and PBDEs were the least abundant among organic contaminants. Their concentrations decreased progressively outward from GoG. Among metal contaminants, the levels of Hg, Pb, and Cd were elevated in GoG. Biomarkers in flounder, EROD activity and DNA SB, showed moderate positive correlations with organic and metal contaminants. In flounder, the integrated biomarker index (IBR/n) presented a spatial trend coherent with chemical pollution index (CPI), but there was no clear spatial correspondence between IBR/n and CPI in mussels nor between sediment toxicity index (STI) and sediment CPI. The integrated assessment of contaminant and biological effect data against available assessment criteria indicated that in biota, the contaminant assessment thresholds were most often exceeded by CB-118, heptachlor, PBDE, and Hg (in the GoG sediments by p,p'-DDT, Hg and Cd), while of the biological determinants, the threshold was breeched by AChE activity in mussels in GoG. Applying the ICES/OSPAR traffic-light approach showed that of the 50 parameters assessed at each site, there were 18% of determinants in the red color category in the two GoG sites and 8% of determinants in the two sites outside GoG, which indicated that none of the four investigated sites attained good environmental status (GES).

  12. Practice makes pretty good: assessment of primary literature reading abilities across multiple large-enrollment biology laboratory courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Brian K; Kadandale, Pavan; He, Wenliang; Murata, Paige M N; Latif, Yama; Warschauer, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Primary literature is essential for scientific communication and is commonly utilized in undergraduate biology education. Despite this, there is often little time spent training our students how to critically analyze a paper. To address this, we introduced a primary literature module in multiple upper-division laboratory courses. In this module, instructors conduct classroom discussions that dissect a paper as researchers do. While previous work has identified classroom interventions that improve primary literature comprehension within a single course, our goal was to determine whether including a scientific paper module in our classes could produce long-term benefits. On the basis of performance in an assessment exam, we found that our module resulted in longitudinal gains, including increased comprehension and critical-thinking abilities in subsequent lab courses. These learning gains were specific to courses utilizing our module, as no longitudinal gains were seen in students who had taken other upper-division labs that lacked extensive primary literature discussion. In addition, we assessed whether performance on our assessment correlated with a variety of factors, including grade point average, course performance, research background, and self-reported confidence in understanding of the article. Furthermore, all of the study conclusions are independent of biology disciplines, as we observe similar trends within each course. © 2014 B. K. Sato et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2014 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  13. A "weight of evidence" approach for the integration of environmental "triad" data to assess ecological risk and biological vulnerability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dagnino, Alessandro; Sforzini, Susanna; Dondero, Francesco; Fenoglio, Stefano; Bona, Elisa; Jensen, John; Viarengo, Aldo

    2008-07-01

    A new Expert Decision Support System (EDSS) that can integrate Triad data for assessing environmental risk and biological vulnerability at contaminated sites has been developed. Starting with ecosystem relevance, the EDSS assigns different weights to the results obtained from Triad disciplines. The following parameters have been employed: 1) chemical soil analyses (revealing the presence of potentially dangerous substances), 2) ecotoxicological bioassays (utilizing classical endpoints such as survival and reproduction rates), 3) biomarkers (showing sublethal pollutant effects), and 4) ecological parameters (assessing changes in community structure and functions). For each Triad discipline, the EDSS compares the data obtained at the studied field sites with reference values and calculates different 0-1 indexes (e.g., Chemical Risk Index, Ecotoxicological Risk Index, and Ecological Risk Index). The EDSS output consists of 3 indexes: 1) Environmental Risk index (EnvRI), quantifying the levels of biological damage at population-community level, 2) Biological Vulnerability Index (BVI), assessing the potential threats to biological equilibriums, and 3) Genotoxicity Index (GTI), screening genotoxicity effects. The EDSS has been applied in the integration of a battery of Triad data obtained during the European Union-funded Life Intervention in the Fraschetta Area (LINFA) project, which has been carried out in order to estimate the potential risk from soils of a highly anthropized area (Alessandria, Italy) mainly impacted by deposition of atmospheric pollutants. Results obtained during 4 seasonal sampling campaigns (2004-2005) show maximum values of EnvRI in sites A and B (characterized by industrial releases) and lower levels in site D (affected by vehicular traffic emissions). All 3 potentially polluted sites have shown high levels of BVI and GTI, suggesting a general change from reference conditions (site C).

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziegler, Brittany Ann

    2012-01-01

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

  15. Assessing environmental quality status by integrating chemical and biological effect data: The Cartagena coastal zone as a case.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-Gómez, Concepción; Fernández, Beatriz; Robinson, Craig D; Campillo, J Antonio; León, Víctor M; Benedicto, José; Hylland, Ketil; Vethaak, A Dick

    2017-03-01

    Cartagena coastal zone (W Mediterranean) was chosen for a practical case study to investigate the suitability of an integrated indicator framework for marine monitoring and assessment of chemicals and their effects, which was developed by ICES and OSPAR. Red mullet (Mullus barbatus) and the Mediterranean mussel (Mytilus galloprovincialis) were selected as target species. Concentrations of contaminants in sediment and biota, and contaminant-related biomarkers were analysed. To assess environmental quality in the Cartagena coastal zone with respect to chemical pollution, data were assessed using available assessment criteria, and then integrated for different environmental matrices. A qualitative scoring method was used to rank the overall assessments into selected categories and to evaluate the confidence level of the final integrated assessment. The ICES/OSPAR integrated assessment framework, originally designed for the North Atlantic, was found to be applicable for Mediterranean species and environmental matrices. Further development of assessment criteria of chemical and biological parameters in sediments and target species from the Mediterranean will, however, be required before this framework can be fully applied for determining Good Environmental Status (GES) of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive in these regions. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Assessing Cross-disciplinary Efficiency of Soil Amendments for Agro-biologically, Economically, and Ecologically Integrated Soil Health Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Preventive and/or manipulative practices will be needed to maintain soil's biological, physiochemical, nutritional, and structural health in natural, managed, and disturbed ecosystems as a foundation for food security and global ecosystem sustainability. While there is a substantial body of interdisciplinary science on understanding function and structure of soil ecosystems, key gaps must be bridged in assessing integrated agro-biological, ecological, economical, and environmental efficiency of soil manipulation practices in time and space across ecosystems. This presentation discusses the application of a fertilizer use efficiency (FUE) model for assessing agronomic, economic, ecological, environmental, and nematode (pest) management efficiency of soil amendments. FUE is defined as increase in host productivity and/or decrease in plant-parasitic nematode population density in response to a given fertilizer treatment. Using the effects of nutrient amendment on Heterodera glycines population density and normalized difference vegetative index (indicator of physiological activities) of a soybean cultivar ‘CX 252’, how the FUE model recognizes variable responses and separates nutrient deficiency and toxicity from nematode parasitism as well as suitability of treatments designed to achieve desired biological and physiochemical soil health conditions is demonstrated. As part of bridging gaps between agricultural and ecological approaches to integrated understanding and management of soil health, modifications of the FUE model for analyzing the relationships amongst nematode community structure, soil parameters (eg. pH, nutrients, %OM), and plant response to soil amendment is discussed. PMID:22736840

  17. Assessment of the effects of student response systems on student learning and attitudes over a broad range of biology courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2007-01-01

    With the advent of wireless technology, new tools are available that are intended to enhance students' learning and attitudes. To assess the effectiveness of wireless student response systems in the biology curriculum at New Mexico State University, a combined study of student attitudes and performance was undertaken. A survey of students in six biology courses showed that strong majorities of students had favorable overall impressions of the use of student response systems and also thought that the technology improved their interest in the course, attendance, and understanding of course content. Students in lower-division courses had more strongly positive overall impressions than did students in upper-division courses. To assess the effects of the response systems on student learning, the number of in-class questions was varied within each course throughout the semester. Students' performance was compared on exam questions derived from lectures with low, medium, or high numbers of in-class questions. Increased use of the response systems in lecture had a positive influence on students' performance on exam questions across all six biology courses. Students not only have favorable opinions about the use of student response systems, increased use of these systems increases student learning.

  18. Automated quantitative assessment of proteins' biological function in protein knowledge bases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayr, Gabriele; Lepperdinger, Günter; Lackner, Peter

    2008-01-01

    Primary protein sequence data are archived in databases together with information regarding corresponding biological functions. In this respect, UniProt/Swiss-Prot is currently the most comprehensive collection and it is routinely cross-examined when trying to unravel the biological role of hypothetical proteins. Bioscientists frequently extract single entries and further evaluate those on a subjective basis. In lieu of a standardized procedure for scoring the existing knowledge regarding individual proteins, we here report about a computer-assisted method, which we applied to score the present knowledge about any given Swiss-Prot entry. Applying this quantitative score allows the comparison of proteins with respect to their sequence yet highlights the comprehension of functional data. pfs analysis may be also applied for quality control of individual entries or for database management in order to rank entry listings.

  19. Automated Quantitative Assessment of Proteins' Biological Function in Protein Knowledge Bases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriele Mayr

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Primary protein sequence data are archived in databases together with information regarding corresponding biological functions. In this respect, UniProt/Swiss-Prot is currently the most comprehensive collection and it is routinely cross-examined when trying to unravel the biological role of hypothetical proteins. Bioscientists frequently extract single entries and further evaluate those on a subjective basis. In lieu of a standardized procedure for scoring the existing knowledge regarding individual proteins, we here report about a computer-assisted method, which we applied to score the present knowledge about any given Swiss-Prot entry. Applying this quantitative score allows the comparison of proteins with respect to their sequence yet highlights the comprehension of functional data. pfs analysis may be also applied for quality control of individual entries or for database management in order to rank entry listings.

  20. Epidemiologic studies of occupational pesticide exposure and cancer: regulatory risk assessments and biologic plausibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acquavella, John; Doe, John; Tomenson, John; Chester, Graham; Cowell, John; Bloemen, Louis

    2003-01-01

    Epidemiologic studies frequently show associations between self-reported use of specific pesticides and human cancers. These findings have engendered debate largely on methodologic grounds. However, biologic plausibility is a more fundamental issue that has received only superficial attention. The purpose of this commentary is to review briefly the toxicology and exposure data that are developed as part of the pesticide regulatory process and to discuss the applicability of this data to epidemiologic research. The authors also provide a generic example of how worker pesticide exposures might be estimated and compared to relevant toxicologic dose levels. This example provides guidance for better characterization of exposure and for consideration of biologic plausibility in epidemiologic studies of pesticides.

  1. Step by Step: Biology Undergraduates' Problem-Solving Procedures during Multiple-Choice Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prevost, Luanna B; Lemons, Paula P

    2016-01-01

    This study uses the theoretical framework of domain-specific problem solving to explore the procedures students use to solve multiple-choice problems about biology concepts. We designed several multiple-choice problems and administered them on four exams. We trained students to produce written descriptions of how they solved the problem, and this allowed us to systematically investigate their problem-solving procedures. We identified a range of procedures and organized them as domain general, domain specific, or hybrid. We also identified domain-general and domain-specific errors made by students during problem solving. We found that students use domain-general and hybrid procedures more frequently when solving lower-order problems than higher-order problems, while they use domain-specific procedures more frequently when solving higher-order problems. Additionally, the more domain-specific procedures students used, the higher the likelihood that they would answer the problem correctly, up to five procedures. However, if students used just one domain-general procedure, they were as likely to answer the problem correctly as if they had used two to five domain-general procedures. Our findings provide a categorization scheme and framework for additional research on biology problem solving and suggest several important implications for researchers and instructors. © 2016 L. B. Prevost and P. P. Lemons. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  2. Assessing sub-Saharan Erythrina for efficacy: traditional uses, biological activities and phytochemistry.

    OpenAIRE

    Kone , Witabouna Mamidou; Solange , Kakou-Ngazoa E; Dosso , Mireille

    2011-01-01

    International audience; The genus Erythrina comprises more than 100 species, widely distributed in tropical and subtropical areas. In Africa, 31 wild species and 14 cultivated species have been described. In sub-Saharan Africa, Erythrina species are used to treat frequent parasitic and microbial diseases, inflammation, cancer, wounds. The rationale of these traditional uses in African traditional medicine was established by screening several species for biological activities. Promising activi...

  3. Preparing Biology Graduate Teaching Assistants for Their Roles as Instructors: An Assessment of Institutional Approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schussler, Elisabeth E; Read, Quentin; Marbach-Ad, Gili; Miller, Kristen; Ferzli, Miriam

    2015-01-01

    The inconsistency of professional development (PD) in teaching for graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) is a widespread problem in higher education. Although GTAs serve an important role in retention of undergraduate science majors and in promotion of scientific literacy in nonmajors, they often lack preparation and ongoing support for teaching. Given the recent national focus on instructional quality in introductory courses, our goal was to use an online survey to identify current practices of teaching PD for biology GTAs and compare these results with the last national survey on this topic. In responses from 71 participant institutions, 96% reported some mandatory teaching preparation for biology GTAs; however, 52% of these programs required 10 or fewer hours per year. Respondents wanted to change their programs to include more pedagogical information and teaching observations with feedback to their GTAs. Programmatic self-ratings of satisfaction with GTA PD were positively correlated with the number of topics discussed during PD. Although more schools are requiring GTA PD for teaching compared with the last national survey, the lack of program breadth at many schools warrants a national conversation with regard to recent calls for improving undergraduate instruction. © 2015 E. E. Schussler et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2015 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  4. Biological assessment of the advanced turbine design at Wanapum Dam, 2005

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dauble, D. D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Deng, Z. D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Richmond, M. C. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Moursund, R. A. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Carlson, T. J. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Rakowski, C. L. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Duncan, J. P. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2007-08-01

    Three studies were conducted to evaluate the biological performance of an advanced design turbine installed at Unit 8 of Wanapum Dam on the Columbia River in 2005 versus a conventional Kaplan turbine, Unit 9. The studies included an evaluation of blade-strike using deterministic and probabilistic models, integrated analysis of the response of the Sensor Fish to sever hydraulic events within the turbine system, and a novel dye technique to measure injury to juvenile salmonids in the field.

  5. The choice of a biological model in assessing internal dose equivalent

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Parodo, A.; Erre, N.

    1977-01-01

    Many are the biological models related to kinetic behavior of radioactive materials within the organism, or in an organ. This is true particularly for the metabolic kinetics of bone-seekers radionuclides described differently by various authors: as a consequence, different forms of the retention function have been used in calculating internal dose equivalent. In our opinion, the retention functions expressed as linear combinations of exponential terms with negative exponents are preferable. In fact, they can be obtained by coherent compartmental analysis and allow a mathematical formalism fairly well definite and easily adaptable to computers. Moreover, it is possible to make use of graphs and monograms already published. The role of the biological model in internal dosimetry, referred to the reliability of the quantitative informations on the kinetic behavior of the radionuclides in the organism and, therefrom, to the accuracy of the doses calculated, is discussed. By comparing the results obtained with different biological models, one finds that the choice of a model is less important than the choice of the value of the appropriate parameters

  6. Physics must join with biology in better assessing risk from low-dose irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feinendegen, L. E.; Neumann, R. D.

    2005-01-01

    This review summarises the complex response of mammalian cells and tissues to low doses of ionising radiation. This thesis encompasses induction of DNA damage, and adaptive protection against both renewed damage and against propagation of damage from the basic level of biological organisation to the clinical expression of detriment. The induction of DNA damage at low radiation doses apparently is proportional to absorbed dose at the physical/chemical level. However, any propagation of such damage to higher levels of biological organisation inherently follows a sigmoid function. Moreover, low-dose-induced inhibition of damage propagation is not linear, but instead follows a dose-effect function typical for adaptive protection, after an initial rapid rise it disappears at doses higher than ∼0.1-0.2 Gy to cells. The particular biological response duality at low radiation doses precludes the validity of the linear-no-threshold hypothesis in the attempt to relate absorbed dose to cancer. In fact, theory and observation support not only a lower cancer incidence than expected from the linear-no-threshold hypothesis, but also a reduction of spontaneously occurring cancer, a hormetic response, in the healthy individual. (authors)

  7. Sensor Fusion and Autonomy as a Powerful Combination for Biological Assessment in the Marine Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark A. Moline

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The ocean environment and the physical and biological processes that govern dynamics are complex. Sampling the ocean to better understand these processes is difficult given the temporal and spatial domains and sampling tools available. Biological systems are especially difficult as organisms possess behavior, operate at horizontal scales smaller than traditional shipboard sampling allows, and are often disturbed by the sampling platforms themselves. Sensors that measure biological processes have also generally not kept pace with the development of physical counterparts as their requirements are as complex as the target organisms. Here, we attempt to address this challenge by advocating the need for sensor-platform combinations to integrate and process data in real-time and develop data products that are useful in increasing sampling efficiencies. Too often, the data of interest is only garnered after post-processing after a sampling effort and the opportunity to use that information to guide sampling is lost. Here we demonstrate a new autonomous platform, where data are collected, analyzed, and data products are output in real-time to inform autonomous decision-making. This integrated capability allows for enhanced and informed sampling towards improving our understanding of the marine environment.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couch, Brian A; Knight, Jennifer K

    2015-12-01

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

  9. Supporting Treatment Decisions in Patients with Differentiated Thyroid Carcinoma (DTC) under Radioiodine-131 Therapy: Role of Biological Dosimetry Assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fadel, A.M.; Chebel, G.M.; Di Giorgio, M.; Vallerga, M.B.; Taja, M.R.; Radl, A.; Bubniak, R.V.; Oneto, A.

    2010-01-01

    Radioiodine-131 therapy is applied in patients with differentiated thyroid carcinoma (DTC), within the therapeutic scheme following thyroidectomy, for the ablation of thyroid remnants and treatment of metastatic disease. Several approaches for the selection of a therapeutic dose were applied. The aim of this therapy is to achieve a lethal dose in the tumor tissue, without exceeding the dose of tolerance in healthy tissues (doses greater than 2 Gy in bone marrow could lead to myelotoxicity). In this work, the treatment protocol used incorporates the assessment by biological dosimetry (BD) for estimating doses to whole body and bone marrow, to tailor patient's treatment. Biological Dosimetry prospective studies conducted on samples from patients with cumulative activities, before and after each therapeutic administration, allows to evaluate DNA damage and repair capacity in peripheral blood lymphocytes. (authors)

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-11-15

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

  11. Depressive symptoms, depression, and the effect of biologic therapy among patients in Psoriasis Longitudinal Assessment and Registry (PSOLAR).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strober, Bruce; Gooderham, Melinda; de Jong, Elke M G J; Kimball, Alexa B; Langley, Richard G; Lakdawala, Nikita; Goyal, Kavitha; Lawson, Fabio; Langholff, Wayne; Hopkins, Lori; Fakharzadeh, Steve; Srivastava, Bhaskar; Menter, Alan

    2018-01-01

    Patients with psoriasis are at an increased risk for depression. However, the impact of treatment on this risk is unclear. Evaluate the incidence and impact of treatment on depression among patients with moderate-to-severe psoriasis. We defined a study population within the Psoriasis Longitudinal Assessment and Registry and measured the incidence of depressive symptoms (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale-Depression score ≥8) and adverse events (AEs) of depression within cohorts receiving biologics, conventional systemic therapies, or phototherapy. Patients were evaluated at approximately 6-month intervals. Multivariate modeling determined the impact of treatment on risk. The incidence rates of depressive symptoms were 3.01 per 100 patient-years (PYs) (95% confidence interval [CI], 2.73-3.32), 5.85 per 100 PYs (95% CI, 4.29-7.97), and 5.70 per 100 PYs (95% CI, 4.58-7.10) for biologics, phototherapy, and conventional therapy, respectively. Compared with conventional therapy, biologics reduced the risk for depressive symptoms (hazard ratio, 0.76; 95% CI, 0.59-0.98), whereas phototherapy did not (hazard ratio, 1.05; 95% CI, 0.71-1.54). The incidence rates for AEs of depression were 0.21 per 100 PYs (95% CI, 0.15-0.31) for biologics, 0.55 per 100 PYs (95% CI, 0.21-1.47) for phototherapy, and 0.14 per 100 PYs (95% CI, 0.03-0.55) for conventional therapy; the fact that there were too few events (37 AEs) precluded modeling. Incomplete capture of depression and confounders in the patients on registry. Compared with conventional therapy, biologics appear to be associated with a lower incidence of depressive symptoms among patients with psoriasis. Copyright © 2017 American Academy of Dermatology, Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. The Development and Application of Affective Assessment in an Upper-Level Cell Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kitchen, Elizabeth; Reeve, Suzanne; Bell, John D.; Sudweeks, Richard R.; Bradshaw, William S.

    2007-01-01

    This study exemplifies how faculty members can develop instruments to assess affective responses of students to the specific features of the courses they teach. Means for assessing three types of affective responses are demonstrated: (a) student attitudes towards courses with differing instructional objectives and methodologies, (b) student…

  13. Assessing Student Understanding of the "New Biology": Development and Evaluation of a Criterion-Referenced Genomics and Bioinformatics Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Chad Edward

    Over the past decade, hundreds of studies have introduced genomics and bioinformatics (GB) curricula and laboratory activities at the undergraduate level. While these publications have facilitated the teaching and learning of cutting-edge content, there has yet to be an evaluation of these assessment tools to determine if they are meeting the quality control benchmarks set forth by the educational research community. An analysis of these assessment tools indicated that valid and reliable inferences about student learning. To remedy this situation the development of a robust GB assessment aligned with the quality control benchmarks was undertaken in order to ensure evidence-based evaluation of student learning outcomes. Content validity is a central piece of construct validity, and it must be used to guide instrument and item development. This study reports on: (1) the correspondence of content validity evidence gathered from independent sources; (2) the process of item development using this evidence; (3) the results from a pilot administration of the assessment; (4) the subsequent modification of the assessment based on the pilot administration results and; (5) the results from the second administration of the assessment. Twenty-nine different subtopics within GB (Appendix B: Genomics and Bioinformatics Expert Survey) were developed based on preliminary GB textbook analyses. These subtopics were analyzed using two methods designed to gather content validity evidence: (1) a survey of GB experts (n=61) and (2) a detailed content analyses of GB textbooks (n=6). By including only the subtopics that were shown to have robust support across these sources, 22 GB subtopics were established for inclusion in the assessment. An expert panel subsequently developed, evaluated, and revised two multiple-choice items to align with each of the 22 subtopics, producing a final item pool of 44 items. These items were piloted with student samples of varying content exposure levels

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2001-01-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2007-07-15

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zorita, Izaskun; Apraiz, Itxaso; Ortiz-Zarragoitia, Maren; Orbea, Amaia; Cancio, Ibon; Soto, Manu; Marigomez, Ionan; Cajaraville, Miren P.

    2007-01-01

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

  17. Biological functioning of PAH-polluted and thermal desorption-treated soils assessed by fauna and microbial bioindicators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cébron, Aurélie; Cortet, Jérôme; Criquet, Stéven; Biaz, Asmaa; Calvert, Virgile; Caupert, Cécile; Pernin, Céline; Leyval, Corinne

    2011-11-01

    A large number of soil bioindicators were used to assess biological diversity and activity in soil polluted with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and the same soil after thermal desorption (TD) treatment. Abundance and biodiversity of bacteria, fungi, protozoa, nematodes and microarthropods, as well as functional parameters such as enzymatic activities and soil respiration, were assessed during a two year period of in situ monitoring. We investigated the influence of vegetation (spontaneous vegetation and Medicago sativa) and TD treatment on biological functioning. Multivariate analysis was performed to analyze the whole data set. A principal response curve (PRC) technique was used to evaluate the different treatments (various vegetation and contaminated vs. TD soil) contrasted with control (bare) soil over time. Our results indicated the value of using a number of complementary bioindicators, describing both diversity and functions, to assess the influence of vegetation on soil and discriminate polluted from thermal desorption (TD)-treated soil. Plants had an influence on the abundance and activity of all organisms examined in our study, favoring the whole trophic chain development. However, although TD-treated soil had a high abundance and diversity of microorganisms and fauna, enzymatic activities were weak because of the strong physical and chemical modifications of this soil. Copyright © 2011 Institut Pasteur. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  18. The impact of biology on risk assessment -- Workshop of the National Research Council`s board on radiation effects research. Meeting report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fry, R.J.M. [Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States); Grosovsky, A. [Univ. of California, Riverside, CA (United States); Hanawalt, P.C. [Stanford Univ., CA (United States). Dept. of Biological Sciences; Jostes, R.F. [National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC (United States). Board on Radiation Effects Research; Little, J.B. [Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA (United States). Dept. of Cancer Biology; Morgan, W.F. [Univ. of California, San Francisco, CA (United States). Dept. of Radiation Oncology; Oleinick, N.L. [Case Western Reserve Univ., Cleveland, OH (United States); Ullrich, R.L. [Univ. of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX (United States). Dept. of Radiation Therapy

    1997-12-31

    The linear, nonthreshold extrapolation from a dose-response relationship for ionizing radiation derived at higher doses to doses for which regulatory standards are proposed is being challenged by some scientists and defended by others. It appears that the risks associated with exposures to doses of interest are below the risks that can be measured with epidemiologic studies. Therefore, many have looked to biology to provide information relevant to risk assessment. The workshop reported here, ``The Impact of biology on Risk Assessment,`` was planned to address the need for further information by bringing together scientists who have been working in key fields of biology and others who have been contemplating the issues associated specifically with this question. The goals of the workshop were to summarize and review the status of the relevant biology, to determine how the reported biologic data might influence risk assessment, and to identify subjects on which more data is needed.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-01-01

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

  20. Recellularization of rat liver: An in vitro model for assessing human drug metabolism and liver biology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew J Robertson

    Full Text Available Liver-like organoids that recapitulate the complex functions of the whole liver by combining cells, scaffolds, and mechanical or chemical cues are becoming important models for studying liver biology and drug metabolism. The advantages of growing cells in three-dimensional constructs include enhanced cell-cell and cell-extracellular matrix interactions and preserved cellular phenotype including, prevention of de-differentiation. In the current study, biomimetic liver constructs were made via perfusion decellularization of rat liver, with the goal of maintaining the native composition and structure of the extracellular matrix. We optimized our decellularization process to produce liver scaffolds in which immunogenic residual DNA was removed but glycosaminoglycans were maintained. When the constructs were recellularized with rat or human liver cells, the cells remained viable, capable of proliferation, and functional for 28 days. Specifically, the cells continued to express cytochrome P450 genes and maintained their ability to metabolize a model drug, midazolam. Microarray analysis showed an upregulation of genes involved in liver regeneration and fibrosis. In conclusion, these liver constructs have the potential to be used as test beds for studying liver biology and drug metabolism.

  1. General guidelines for safe and expeditious international transport of samples subjected to biological dosimetry assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Giorgio, Marina; Radl, Analía; Taja, María R; Bubniak, Ruth; Deminge, Mayra; Sapienza, Carla; Vázquez, Marina; Baciu, Florian; Kenny, Pat

    2014-06-01

    It has been observed that victims of accidental overexposures show better chance of survival if they receive medical treatment early. The increased risk of scenarios involving mass casualties has stimulated the scientific community to develop tools that would help the medical doctors to treat victims. The biological dosimetry has become a routine test to estimate the dose, supplementing physical and clinical dosimetry. In case of radiation emergencies, in order to provide timely and effectively biological dosimetry assistance it is essential to guarantee an adequate transport of blood samples in principal, for providing support to countries that do not have biodosimetry laboratories. The objective of the present paper is to provide general guidelines, summarised in 10 points, for timely and proper receiving and sending of blood samples under National and International regulations, for safe and expeditious international transport. These guidelines cover the classification, packaging, marking, labelling, refrigeration and documentation requirements for the international shipping of blood samples and pellets, to provide assistance missions with a tool that would contribute with the preparedness for an effective biodosimetric response in cases of radiological or nuclear emergencies. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  2. Preparing Biology Graduate Teaching Assistants for Their Roles as Instructors: An Assessment of Institutional Approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schussler, Elisabeth E.; Read, Quentin; Marbach-Ad, Gili; Miller, Kristen; Ferzli, Miriam

    2015-01-01

    The inconsistency of professional development (PD) in teaching for graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) is a widespread problem in higher education. Although GTAs serve an important role in retention of undergraduate science majors and in promotion of scientific literacy in nonmajors, they often lack preparation and ongoing support for teaching. Given the recent national focus on instructional quality in introductory courses, our goal was to use an online survey to identify current practices of teaching PD for biology GTAs and compare these results with the last national survey on this topic. In responses from 71 participant institutions, 96% reported some mandatory teaching preparation for biology GTAs; however, 52% of these programs required 10 or fewer hours per year. Respondents wanted to change their programs to include more pedagogical information and teaching observations with feedback to their GTAs. Programmatic self-ratings of satisfaction with GTA PD were positively correlated with the number of topics discussed during PD. Although more schools are requiring GTA PD for teaching compared with the last national survey, the lack of program breadth at many schools warrants a national conversation with regard to recent calls for improving undergraduate instruction. PMID:26231562

  3. Step by Step: Biology Undergraduates’ Problem-Solving Procedures during Multiple-Choice Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prevost, Luanna B.; Lemons, Paula P.

    2016-01-01

    This study uses the theoretical framework of domain-specific problem solving to explore the procedures students use to solve multiple-choice problems about biology concepts. We designed several multiple-choice problems and administered them on four exams. We trained students to produce written descriptions of how they solved the problem, and this allowed us to systematically investigate their problem-solving procedures. We identified a range of procedures and organized them as domain general, domain specific, or hybrid. We also identified domain-general and domain-specific errors made by students during problem solving. We found that students use domain-general and hybrid procedures more frequently when solving lower-order problems than higher-order problems, while they use domain-specific procedures more frequently when solving higher-order problems. Additionally, the more domain-specific procedures students used, the higher the likelihood that they would answer the problem correctly, up to five procedures. However, if students used just one domain-general procedure, they were as likely to answer the problem correctly as if they had used two to five domain-general procedures. Our findings provide a categorization scheme and framework for additional research on biology problem solving and suggest several important implications for researchers and instructors. PMID:27909021

  4. Integrated Ecological River Health Assessments, Based on Water Chemistry, Physical Habitat Quality and Biological Integrity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji Yoon Kim

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available This study evaluated integrative river ecosystem health using stressor-based models of physical habitat health, chemical water health, and biological health of fish and identified multiple-stressor indicators influencing the ecosystem health. Integrated health responses (IHRs, based on star-plot approach, were calculated from qualitative habitat evaluation index (QHEI, nutrient pollution index (NPI, and index of biological integrity (IBI in four different longitudinal regions (Groups I–IV. For the calculations of IHRs values, multi-metric QHEI, NPI, and IBI models were developed and their criteria for the diagnosis of the health were determined. The longitudinal patterns of the river were analyzed by a self-organizing map (SOM model and the key major stressors in the river were identified by principal component analysis (PCA. Our model scores of integrated health responses (IHRs suggested that mid-stream and downstream regions were impaired, and the key stressors were closely associated with nutrient enrichment (N and P and organic matter pollutions from domestic wastewater disposal plants and urban sewage. This modeling approach of IHRs may be used as an effective tool for evaluations of integrative ecological river health..

  5. Assessing the impact of Melendez-Diaz on the investigation and prosecution of biological weapons incidents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahr, Elizabeth L; Katz, Rebecca

    2009-12-01

    In June 2009, the U.S. Supreme Court asserted in Melendez-Diaz v Massachusetts that the admission of a laboratory analyst's certificate to validate forensic evidence against a defendant violated the defendant's Sixth Amendment Confrontation Clause rights. The Court stated that if a prosecution wished to use forensic science evidence against a defendant, the plaintiff must ensure that an actual lab analyst could testify live before the court as to the nature of the laboratory certificate being presented against the defendant, in order to uphold a defendant's constitutional right to confront the adverse witnesses against him or her. The opinion itself, as well as dicta in both the majority and the dissenting opinions, has potential implications for the success of any future prosecutions of alleged biological weapons use involving microbial forensics. Not only does the Melendez-Diaz opinion create an added burden on laboratory investigators, but the case called into question the reliability of the use of forensic science in the courtroom. Analysts and policymakers should be aware of this ruling and any potential impact the Court may have on the ability to successfully prosecute a biological weapons use event.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  7. Students’ Use of Optional Online Reviews and Its Relationship to Summative Assessment Outcomes in Introductory Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carpenter, Shana K.; Rahman, Shuhebur; Lund, Terry J. S.; Armstrong, Patrick I.; Lamm, Monica H.; Reason, Robert D.; Coffman, Clark R.

    2017-01-01

    Retrieval practice has been shown to produce significant enhancements in student learning of course information, but the extent to which students make use of retrieval to learn information on their own is unclear. In the current study, students in a large introductory biology course were provided with optional online review questions that could be accessed as Test questions (requiring students to answer the questions before receiving feedback) or as Read questions (providing students with the question and correct answer up-front). Students more often chose to access the questions as Test compared with Read, and students who used the Test questions scored significantly higher on subsequent exams compared with students who used Read questions or did not access the questions at all. Following an in-class presentation of superior exam performance following use of the Test questions, student use of Test questions increased significantly for the remainder of the term. These results suggest that practice questions can be an effective tool for enhancing student achievement in biology and that informing students about performance-based outcomes coincides with increased use of retrieval practice. PMID:28408408

  8. Assessing therapeutic relevance of biologically interesting, ampholytic substances based on their physicochemical and spectral characteristics with chemometric tools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Judycka, U.; Jagiello, K.; Bober, L.; Błażejowski, J.; Puzyn, T.

    2018-06-01

    Chemometric tools were applied to investigate the biological behaviour of ampholytic substances in relation to their physicochemical and spectral properties. Results of the Principal Component Analysis suggest that size of molecules and their electronic and spectral characteristics are the key properties required to predict therapeutic relevance of the compounds examined. These properties were used for developing the structure-activity classification model. The classification model allows assessing the therapeutic behaviour of ampholytic substances on the basis of solely values of descriptors that can be obtained computationally. Thus, the prediction is possible without necessity of carrying out time-consuming and expensive laboratory tests, which is its main advantage.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    This paper reports a full assessment of results from ICON, an international workshop on marine integrated contaminant monitoring, encompassing different matrices (sediment, fish, mussels, gastropods), areas (Iceland, North Sea, Baltic, Wadden Sea, Seine estuary and the western Mediterranean) and

  10. Macroinvertebrate-based assessment of biological condition at selected sites in the Eagle River watershed, Colorado, 2000-07

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zuellig, Robert E.; Bruce, James F.; Healy, Brian D.; Williams, Cory A.

    2010-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with the Colorado River Water Conservation District, Eagle County, Eagle River Water and Sanitation District, Upper Eagle Regional Water Authority, Colorado Department of Transportation, City of Aurora, Town of Eagle, Town of Gypsum, Town of Minturn, Town of Vail, Vail Resorts, Colorado Springs Utilities, Denver Water, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service (FS), compiled macroinvertebrate (73 sites, 124 samples) data previously collected in the Eagle River watershed from selected USGS and FS studies, 2000-07. These data were analyzed to assess the biological condition (that is, biologically ?degraded? or ?good?) at selected sites in the Eagle River watershed and determine if site class (for example, urban or undeveloped) described biological condition. An independently developed predictive model was applied to calculate a site-specific measure of taxonomic completeness for macroinvertebrate communities, where taxonomic completeness was expressed as the ratio of observed (O) taxa to those expected (E) to occur at each site. Macroinvertebrate communities were considered degraded at sites were O/E values were less than 0.80, indicating that at least 20 percent of expected taxa were not observed. Sites were classified into one of four classes (undeveloped, adjacent road or highway or both, mixed, urban) using a combination of riparian land-cover characteristics, examination of topographic maps and aerial imagery, screening for exceedances in water-quality standards, and best professional judgment. Analysis of variance was used to determine if site class accounted for variability in mean macroinvertebrate O/E values. Finally, macroinvertebrate taxa observed more or less frequently than expected at urban sites were indentified. This study represents the first standardized assessment of biological condition of selected sites distributed across the Eagle River watershed. Of the 73 sites evaluated, just over

  11. Immunogenicity of biologically-derived therapeutics: assessment and interpretation of nonclinical safety studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ponce, Rafael; Abad, Leslie; Amaravadi, Lakshmi; Gelzleichter, Thomas; Gore, Elizabeth; Green, James; Gupta, Shalini; Herzyk, Danuta; Hurst, Christopher; Ivens, Inge A; Kawabata, Thomas; Maier, Curtis; Mounho, Barbara; Rup, Bonita; Shankar, Gopi; Smith, Holly; Thomas, Peter; Wierda, Dan

    2009-07-01

    An evaluation of potential antibody formation to biologic therapeutics during the course of nonclinical safety studies and its impact on the toxicity profile is expected under current regulatory guidance and is accepted standard practice. However, approaches for incorporating this information in the interpretation of nonclinical safety studies are not clearly established. Described here are the immunological basis of anti-drug antibody formation to biopharmaceuticals (immunogenicity) in laboratory animals, and approaches for generating and interpreting immunogenicity data from nonclinical safety studies of biotechnology-derived therapeutics to support their progression to clinical evaluation. We subscribe that immunogenicity testing strategies should be adapted to the specific needs of each therapeutic development program, and data generated from such analyses should be integrated with available clinical and anatomic pathology, pharmacokinetic, and pharmacodynamic data to properly interpret nonclinical studies.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2015-01-01

    marine ecosystem (LME), five climate zones, and site-generic. The XFs obtained range from 0.45 (Central Arctic Ocean) to 15.9kgO2kgN-1 (Baltic Sea). While LME resolution is recommended, aggregated PE or XF per climate zone can be adopted, but not global aggregation due to high variability. The XF......Emissions of nitrogen (N) from anthropogenic sources enrich marine waters and promote planktonic growth. This newly synthesised organic carbon is eventually exported to benthic waters where aerobic respiration by heterotrophic bacteria results in the consumption of dissolved oxygen (DO......). This pathway is typical of marine eutrophication. A model is proposed to mechanistically estimate the response of coastal marine ecosystems to N inputs. It addresses the biological processes of nutrient-limited primary production (PP), metazoan consumption, and bacterial degradation, in four distinct sinking...

  13. Towards the Identification of an In Vitro Tool for Assessing the Biological Behavior of Aerosol Supplied Nanomaterials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luisana Di Cristo

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Nanoparticles (NP-based inhalation systems for drug delivery can be administered in liquid form, by nebulization or using pressurized metered dose inhalers, and in solid form by means of dry powder inhalers. However, NP delivery to the lungs has many challenges including the formulation instability due to particle-particle interactions and subsequent aggregation, causing poor deposition in the small distal airways and subsequent alveolar macrophages activity, which could lead to inflammation. This work aims at providing an in vitro experimental design for investigating the correlation between the physico-chemical properties of NP, and their biological behavior, when they are used as NP-based inhalation treatments, comparing two different exposure systems. By means of an aerosol drug delivery nebulizer, human lung cells cultured at air–liquid interface (ALI were exposed to two titanium dioxide NP (NM-100 and NM-101, obtained from the JRC repository. In parallel, ALI cultures were exposed to NP suspension by direct inoculation, i.e., by adding the NP suspensions on the apical side of the cell cultures with a pipette. The formulation stability of NP, measured as hydrodynamic size distributions, the cell viability, cell monolayer integrity, cell morphology and pro-inflammatory cytokines secretion were investigated. Our results demonstrated that the formulation stability of NM-100 and NM-101 was strongly dependent on the aggregation phenomena that occur in the conditions adopted for the biological experiments. Interestingly, comparable biological data between the two exposure methods used were observed, suggesting that the conventional exposure coupled to ALI culturing conditions offers a relevant in vitro tool for assessing the correlation between the physico-chemical properties of NP and their biological behavior, when NP are used as drug delivery systems.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-04-01

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

  15. CLINICAL AND FUNCTIONAL ASSESSMENT OF THE BIOLOGICAL PROSTHESIS “ASPIRE” FOR SURGICAL CORRECTION OF MITRAL VALVE DISEASE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. G. Esin

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Aim: To assess clinical and functional efficacy of implanted biological prosthesis “ASPIRE” (manufactured by Vascutek for correction of mitral valve disease.Materials and methods: From October 2008 to December 2013, biological prostheses “ASPIRE” (Vascutek were implanted to 34 patients with mitral valve disease (mean age 63.59 ± 4.96 years, 79.4% female. From these, 24 patients had mitral stenosis and 10 patients had mitral insufficiency. 73.5% of all patients had heart failure Strazhesko-Vasilenko IIA grade and 85.3% of patients had chronic heart failure NYHA III. Isolated mitral valve replacement was performed only in 8 (23.5% of patients. In 22 (64.7% of cases mitral valve replacement was combined with tricuspid valvuloplasty in various modifications. Duration of cardiopulmonary bypass and of aortic clamping was 88.09 ± 25.95 and 65.68 ± 25.51 minutes, respectively. Before and after surgery all patients underwent echocardiographic assessment and clinical assessment of their general status.Results: In-hospital mortality was 5.88% (n = 2 and was related to multiorgan failure in the early postoperative period. All 32 (94.12% surviving patients improved with decrease or complete disappearance of heart failure. Postoperative complications were typical for cardiac surgery. There were no episodes of embolism, structural dysfunction, thrombosis of the prosthesis and endocarditis of the prosthesis in the early postoperative period. Pressure gradients across prosthetic valves were not high and corresponded to good clinical and hemodynamic results in the early postoperative period.Conclusion: Taking into account good immediate results of mitral valve replacement, as well as no need in lifelong anticoagulation in patients with multiple concomitant disorders, implantation of the biological prosthesis “ASPIRE” (Vascutek could become a procedure of choice for correction of valve abnormalities in patients above 65 years. For more comprehensive

  16. Biological effects of static magnetic fields: a selective review with emphasis on risk assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Easterly, C.E.

    1982-04-01

    Rather than focusing on literature per se, the current study determines the status of magnetic field information that is applicable to risk assessment. Hence, an attempt is made to identify both the literature that is useful to the goal of risk assessment and a framework within which risk assessment methodologies can be derived. From this selected review, it is concluded that three areas exist for which adequate information can be found to begin modelling: disease induction, reproduction and development, and cardiovascular response. The first two are supported by a combination of positive and negative findings and the last by a calculational technique which utilizes the physically well-known principle of flow retardation for a conducting fluid moving through a magnetic field

  17. Biological effects of static magnetic fields: a selective review with emphasis on risk assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Easterly, C. E.

    1982-04-01

    Rather than focusing on literature per se, the current study determines the status of magnetic field information that is applicable to risk assessment. Hence, an attempt is made to identify both the literature that is useful to the goal of risk assessment and a framework within which risk assessment methodologies can be derived. From this selected review, it is concluded that three areas exist for which adequate information can be found to begin modelling: disease induction, reproduction and development, and cardiovascular response. The first two are supported by a combination of positive and negative findings and the last by a calculational technique which utilizes the physically well-known principle of flow retardation for a conducting fluid moving through a magnetic field.

  18. Research toward the development of a biologically based dose response assessment for inorganic arsenic carcinogenicity: A progress report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Clewell, Harvey J.; Thomas, Russell S.; Gentry, P. Robinan; Crump, Kenny S.; Kenyon, Elaina M.; El-Masri, Hisham A.; Yager, Janice W.

    2007-01-01

    Cancer risk assessments for inorganic arsenic have been based on human epidemiological data, assuming a linear dose response below the range of observation of tumors. Part of the reason for the continued use of the linear approach in arsenic risk assessments is the lack of an adequate biologically based dose response (BBDR) model that could provide a quantitative basis for an alternative nonlinear approach. This paper describes elements of an ongoing collaborative research effort between the CIIT Centers for Health Research, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, ENVIRON International, and EPRI to develop BBDR modeling approaches that could be used to inform a nonlinear cancer dose response assessment for inorganic arsenic. These efforts are focused on: (1) the refinement of physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) models of the kinetics of inorganic arsenic and its metabolites in the mouse and human; (2) the investigation of mathematical solutions for multi-stage cancer models involving multiple pathways of cell transformation; (3) the review and evaluation of the literature on the dose response for the genomic effects of arsenic; and (4) the collection of data on the dose response for genomic changes in the urinary bladder (a human target tissue for arsenic carcinogenesis) associated with in vivo drinking water exposures in the mouse as well as in vitro exposures of both mouse and human cells. An approach is proposed for conducting a biologically based margin of exposure risk assessment for inorganic arsenic using the in vitro dose response for the expression of genes associated with the obligatory precursor events for arsenic tumorigenesis

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagler, Ron; Wagler, Amy

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Eero, Margit; Hjelm, Joakim; Behrens, Jane

    2015-01-01

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

  2. The Inquiry Matrix: A Tool for Assessing and Planning Inquiry in Biology and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grady, Julie

    2010-01-01

    One way to advance inquiry in the classroom is to establish a systematic strategy for reflecting on our practice and our students' readiness to engage in increasingly complex scientific reasoning. The Matrix for Assessing and Planning Scientific Inquiry (MAPSI) is a tool that promotes this valuable reflection so that we, as teachers, are better…

  3. A technical review and assessment of the BEIR V [Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation V] report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1990-03-01

    This report was prepared by the DOE BEIR V Technical Review Committee (TRC) to provide a technical review and assessment of the National Research Council's Bilogical Effects of Ionizing Radiation (BEIR) Committee's Report entitled ''Health Effects of Exposure to Low Levels of Ionizing Radiation'' (BEIR V). This report contains seven sections. The first section serves as an introduction and reviews the charge to the TRC. The second section is a chapter-by- chapter summary of the BEIR V Report. The third section is a summary of the risk estimates and conclusions of the BEIR V Committee for genetic effects, cancer induction, and in utero effects. The fourth section is a summary and analysis of the new scientific information used by the BEIR V Committee in developing its risk recommendations and conclusions. The fifth section is an assessment of the scientific information and methods used by the BEIR V Committee in developing their risk estimates and conclusions and an analysis of the key assumptions underlying the use of these risk estimates in risk assessment. The sixth section is the TRC'S assessment of the regulatory implications of the BEIR V risk estimates and conclusions for DOE nuclear operations. The seventh and final section is the TRC'S recommended actions for DOE's consideration concerning the BEIR V Report risk estimates and conclusions. 23 refs., 5 tabs

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  5. [Assessment of biological corrosion of ferroconcrete of ground-based industrial structures].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rozhanskaia, A M; Piliashenko-Novokhatnyĭ, A I; Purish, L M; Durcheva, V N; Kozlova, I A

    2001-01-01

    One of the objects of a nuclear plant built in 1983 and put in 15-years long dead storage with the purpose to estimate the degree of contamination by rust-hazardous microorganisms of ferroconcrete structures and to predict their biocorrosion state after putting in operation was a subject of microbiological investigation. The everywhere distribution of sulphur cycle bacteria (thionic and sulphate-reducing bacteria) on the surface and in the bulk of concrete structures, their confineness to corrosion products of concrete and bars of the investigated building have been shown. It has been demonstrated that sulphate-reducing bacteria were the most distributed group in all the sampling points. An indirect estimation of participation degree of the microbial communities in the processes of ferroconcrete biological damages has been carried out as based on the accumulation intensity of aggressive gaseous metabolites--carbon dioxide and hydrogen. Probability of deterioration of biocorrosion situation under the full-scale operation of the object has been substantiated.

  6. Application of Fourier transform infrared ellipsometry to assess the concentration of biological molecules

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Caurel, Enric; Drevillon, Bernard; De Martino, Antonello; Schwartz, Laurent

    2002-12-01

    Spectroscopic ellipsometry is a noninvasive optical characterization technique mainly used in the semiconductor field to characterize bare substrates and thin films. In particular, it allows the gathering of information concerning the physical structure of the sample, such as roughness and film thickness, as well as its optical response. In the mid-infrared (IR) range each molecule exhibits a characteristic absorption fingerprint, which makes this technique chemically selective. Phase-modulated IR ellipsometry does not require a baseline correction procedure or suppression of atmospheric CO2 and water-vapor absorption bands, thus greatly reducing the subjectivity in data analysis. We have found that ellipsometric measurements of thin films, such as the solid residuals left on a plane surface after evaporation of a liquid drop containing a given compound in solution, are particularly favorable for dosing purposes because the intensity of IR absorptions shows a linear behavior along a wide range of solution concentrations of the given compound. Our aim is to illustrate with a concrete example and to justify theoretically the linearity experimentally found between radiation absorption and molecule concentration. For the example, we prepared aqueous solutions of glycogen, a molecule of huge biological importance currently tested in biochemical analyses, at concentrations ranging from 1 mg/l to 1 g/l, which correspond to those found in physiological conditions. The results of this example are promising for the application of ellipsometry for dosing purposes in biochemistry and biomedicine.

  7. Assessing sub-Saharan Erythrina for efficacy: traditional uses, biological activities and phytochemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kone, Witabouna Mamidou; Solange, Kakou-Ngazoa E; Dosso, Mireille

    2011-05-15

    The genus Erythrina comprises more than 100 species, widely distributed in tropical and subtropical areas. In Africa, 31 wild species and 14 cultivated species have been described. In sub-Saharan Africa, Erythrina species are used to treat frequent parasitic and microbial diseases, inflammation, cancer, wounds. The rationale of these traditional uses in African traditional medicine was established by screening several species for biological activities. Promising activities were found against bacteria, parasites (Plasmodium), human and phytopathogenic fungi, some of which were multidrug resistant (MDR) micro organisms. Some species also exhibited antioxidant, anti-inflammatory activities and enzymes inhibitory properties. Most of the species chemically investigated were reported to contain flavanones, prenylated isoflavones, isoflavanones and pterocarpans. Some phytochemicals (vogelin B, vogelin C, isowightcone, abyssinin II, derrone) were the active principles as antibacterials, antifungals, antiplasmodials and inhibitors of enzyme borne diseases (PTP1B, HIV protease, DGAT). This review highlights the important role of Erythrina species as sources of lead compounds or new class of phytotherapeutic agents for fighting against major public health (MDR infections, cancer, diabetes, obesity) in sub-Saharan Africa.

  8. Assessment of DDT levels in selected environmental media and biological samples from Mexico and Central America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Maldonado, Iván N; Trejo, Antonio; Ruepert, Clemens; Jovel, Reyna del Carmen; Méndez, Mónica Patricia; Ferrari, Mirtha; Saballos-Sobalvarro, Emilio; Alexander, Carlos; Yáñez-Estrada, Leticia; Lopez, Dania; Henao, Samuel; Pinto, Emilio R; Díaz-Barriga, Fernando

    2010-03-01

    Taking into account the environmental persistence and the toxicity of DDT, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) organized a surveillance program in Mesoamerica which included the detection of residual DDT in environmental (soil) and biological samples (fish tissue and children's blood). This program was carried out in communities from Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama. This paper presents the first report of that program. As expected, the results show that the levels for [summation operator] DDT in soil (outdoor or indoor) and fish samples in the majority of the locations studied are below guidelines. However, in some locations, we found children with high concentrations of DDT as in Mexico (mean level 50.2 ng/mL). Furthermore, in some communities and for some matrices, the DDT/DDE quotient is higher than one and this may reflect a recent DDT exposure. Therefore, more efforts are needed to avoid exposure and to prevent the reintroduction of DDT into the region. In this regard it is important to know that under the surveillance of PAHO and with the support of UNEP, a regional program in Mesoamerica for the collection and disposal of DDT and other POPs stockpiles is in progress. Copyright (c) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Synthesis and biological assessment of novel acylhydrazone derivatives of 2-methyl-1,4-naphthoquinone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamal Bouhadir

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Naphthoquinones are medicinally important molecules with a diverse array of biological properties such as antimicrobial, antifungal, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, anti-artherosclerotic and anticarcinogenic activities. In this study, we report the simple and direct preparation of a new group of novel menadione-hydrazone conjugates by reaction of 2-methyl-1,4-naphthoquinones with several aliphatic, aromatic and nucleobase hydrazides. The menadione-hydrazone conjugates were produced in excellent yields and characterized by IR, NMR and HRMS. The menadione derivatives were tested for their anticancer effects against human colon cancer HCT116 and human breast cancer MCF-7 cell lines. Interestingly, the molecules displayed disparate activities against both cell lines; the menadione hydrazones derived from the lipophilic myristic hydrazide and stearic hydrazide exhibited the most potent activity against HCT116 cell lines with IC50 of 89 and 64 μM. The most effective compounds against MCF-7 cells were the lauric hydrazide and benzoic hydrazide-derived menadione hydrazones with IC50 of 56 µM.

  10. Biological methods for assessment of budbreak in apple trees for modeling dormancy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rafael Anzanello

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available A biological method was developed to evaluate the dormancy state of apple buds under controlled conditions. Cuttings (20-25 cm long of ‘Castel Gala’ and ‘Royal Gala’ were sampled during the winter period, evaluating different cold and heat regimes to induce budbreak. Contrasts were tested in plant material processing (single node x intact cuttings, cold storage method to break dormancy in incubator chambers (planted in pots with floral foam x wrapped in plastic film, vertically or horizontally and budbreak method in plant growth chambers (base immersed in water x planted in floral foam. Intact cuttings stored vertically in the cold represented better the natural interactions between buds than single node cuttings. Budbreak of lateral buds was strongly influenced by apical dominance. Wrapping cuttings in plastic film optimized internal space usage in the incubators and the number of evaluated buds, compared to planting cuttings in pots. During the warm period in the growth chambers, intact cuttings on floral foam resulted in better bud preservation and survival throughout the evaluation period, compared to cuttings with bases immersed in water. The most suitable conditions to evaluate dormancy evolution in apple buds used plastic-wrapped intact cuttings stored vertically during the cold period, with budbreak evaluation in the warm period after planting the cuttings in floral foam. Standardization of methodology helps to obtain better results in the development of physiological models of dormancy.

  11. Assessment of workers' exposure to microorganisms when using biological degreasing stations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villeneuve, Carol-Anne; Marchand, Geneviève; Gardette, Marie; Lavoie, Jacques; Neesham-Grenon, Eve; Bégin, Denis; Debia, Maximilien

    2018-06-01

    Biological degreasing stations (BDSs) are used by mechanics. These BDSs use a water-based solution with a microbial degradation process. Occupational exposure during the use of BDSs has not been reported and few studies have identified the bacteria present. The objectives were to measure the concentration of microorganisms during BDSs' use and monitor the bacterial community in the liquid over time. Five mechanical workshops were studied. Six 30-min samples were taken at each workshop over one year. Bioaerosols in the ambient air samples were collected with Andersen impactors near the BDS Bioaerosols in the workers' breathing zone (WBZ) were collected on filters. Fresh bio-degreasing fluids were collected from unopened containers, and used bio-degreasing fluids were collected in the BDS. The results show that the use of BDSs does not seem to increase bioaerosols concentrations in the WBZ (concentrations lower than 480 CFU/m 3 ) and that the bacterial communities (mainly yeasts, Bacillus subtilis and Pseudomonas aeruginosa) in the bio-degreasing fluids change through time and differ from the original community (B. subtilis). This study established that workers using BDSs were exposed to low levels of bioaerosols. No respiratory protection is recommended based on bioaerosols concentrations, but gloves and strict personal hygiene practices are essential. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. The Assessment of Biological and Pollution Index of Estuaries Around Port of Tanjung Emas Semarang

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tjahjono, A.; Wahyuni, O.; Purwantini, S.

    2018-02-01

    Estuary is a place of accumulation of the population’s actitivites produced by domestic, industry or agriculture. This research was conducted to three of estuary of the rivers around the waters of Port of Tanjung Emas Semarang (PTES). They were estuaries of Baru river, Banjir Kanal Timur (BKT) and Siangker in west monsoon from October to December 2015. The purpose of this research was to analyze pollution index, the abundance of microorganisms either phytoplankton or zooplankton, the content of heavy metal in sediment and sea water, biological index that included diversity (H), uniformity (e), dominance (D), Saprobik Index (SI), and the Total of Saprobik Index (TSI) in the waters either HTL (High Tide Level) or LTL (Low Tide Level). The concentration of heavy metal in both sea water and sediments were analyzed by using Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (AAS). The result obtained from 12 parameters which were tested showed that the three waters can be categorized at heavily polluted condition at each value from 12.52 to 24.98. The concentration of heavy metal at sea water during HTW and LTW ranging from Cd is around 0.033 and 0. 048 mg/kg, Cu 0.047 and 0.07 mg/kg, Pb 0.48 and 0.71 mg/kg, and Zn 0.043 and 0.057 mg/kg. The saprobity value index based on the existence of phytoplankton or zooplankton was ranging of Oligosaprobik at low pollution or has not been polluted yet.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2009-01-01

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

  14. Biological impact assessment of thermal discharges in the vicinity of Madras Atomic Power Station, Kalpakkam, India

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shahul Hameed, P.; Syed Mohamed, H.E.; Krishnamoorthy, R.

    2007-01-01

    Madras Atomic Power Station (MAPS), Kalpakkam uses seawater as tertiary coolant at the rate of 35m 3 /sec employing a once through type of circuit. The discharged water travels as a canal and mixes with seawater at the mixing zone. The present study investigated the impact of the discharged thermal effluent on the physical chemical and biological quality of the receiving seawater body. The thermal plume is shore attached and extended up to 300 m from the shore and registered a ΔT of 3-4 degC. The shore attached thermal plume adversely affected the density and distribution of macro benthic animals. The benthos are absent in the mixing zone and their density decreased about 500 m on either side of the mixing zone. The natural shift in the mixing zone provides opportunities for the recolonization of macro benthos. The thermal tolerance study revealed that the experimental fish species Mugil cephalus and Alepeus djidapa did not show any mortality or loss of equilibrium at ΔT 5 degC (33 degC) and ΔT 7 degC (35 degC) and the maximum ΔT recorded at the impact area is 6 degC. The gradual increase in temperature as found in the plume favors the fishes to escape the acute thermal exposures. (author)

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Specht, W.L.

    2000-01-01

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

  16. Assessment of a new biological complex efficacy on dysseborrhea, inflammation, and Propionibacterium acnes proliferation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trompezinski S

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Sandra Trompezinski,1 Sophie Weber,1 Benoît Cadars,2 Florence Larue,1 Nathalie Ardiet,1 Marlène Chavagnac-Bonneville,2 Michèle Sayag,2 Eric Jourdan2 1NAOS, Aix-en Provence, 2Direction Scientifique Bioderma (NAOS, Lyon, France Introduction: Acne vulgaris is a common chronic inflammatory disease of the pilosebaceous unit triggered by Propionibacterium acnes. A bakuchiol, Ginkgo biloba extract, and mannitol (BGM complex has been developed to provide patients with acne with a specific dermocosmetic to be used adjunctively with conventional treatments. Objective: The aim of these studies was to assess the antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidative potential of BGM complex and its individual compounds as well as its impact on sebum composition. Methods: The antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidative potential of BGM complex and its compounds was assessed through in vitro, ex vivo, and clinical studies. The clinical benefit of BGM complex formulated in a cream was assessed in subjects prone to acne through sebum composition analysis and photometric assessments. Results: Results from the studies showed that the BGM complex has significant antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidative properties. At similar concentrations, bakuchiol has up to twice the antioxidative potential than vitamin E. In subjects, BGM complex regulated the sebum composition in acne patients by increasing the level of sapienic and linolenic acid and reducing the level of oleic acid. The reduced number of porphyrins on the skin surface showed that it is also effective against P. acnes. Conclusion: BGM complex provides a complete adjunctive care in patients with acne by targeting etiopathogenic factors of acne: dysseborrhea, inflammation, and P. acnes proliferation. Keywords: acne, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidation, cosmetics, sebum

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Specht, W.L.

    2000-02-28

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

  18. Comprehensive Biological Monitoring to Assess Isocyanates and Solvents Exposure in the NSW Australia Motor Vehicle Repair Industry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Jimmy; Cantrell, Phillip; Nand, Aklesh

    2017-10-01

    of water-based paints in the industry, resulting in lower than expected isocyanate and solvent metabolite levels detected in this more recent study. Further, the completion of sample context form, along with spot urine collection in relation to the isocyanate exposure monitoring work details will provide crucial information to interpret the biological analysis results. The development of new biomarkers of isocyanate oligomer-derived triamines should be incorporated in the assessment of isocyanate exposure in the MVR industry to provide a more complete picture of isocyanate exposure. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Occupational Hygiene Society.

  19. Readability assessment of package inserts of biological medicinal products from the European medicines agency website.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piñero-López, Ma Ángeles; Modamio, Pilar; Lastra, Cecilia F; Mariño, Eduardo L

    2014-07-01

    Package inserts that accompany medicines are a common source of information aimed at patients and should match patient abilities in terms of readability. Our objective was to determine the degree of readability of the package inserts for biological medicinal products commercially available in 2007 and compare them with the readability of the same package inserts in 2010. A total of 33 package inserts were selected and classified into five groups according to the type of medicine: monoclonal antibody-based products, cytokines, therapeutic enzymes, recombinant blood factors and other blood-related products, and recombinant hormones. The package inserts were downloaded from the European Medicines Agency website in 2007 and 2010. Readability was evaluated for the entire text of five of the six sections of the package inserts and for the 'Annex' when there was one. Three readability formulas were used: SMOG (Simple Measure of Gobbledygook) grade, Flesh-Kincaid grade level, and Szigriszt's perspicuity index. No significant differences were found between the readability results for the 2007 package inserts and those from 2010 according to any of the three readability indices studied (p>0.05). However, there were significant differences (preadability scores of the sections of the package inserts in both 2007 and 2010. The readability of the package inserts was above the recommended sixth grade reading level (ages 11-12) and may lead to difficulties of understanding for people with limited literacy. All the sections should be easy to read and, therefore, the readability of the medicine package inserts studied should be improved.

  20. In Vivo toxicological assessment of biologically synthesized silver nanoparticles in adult Zebrafish (Danio rerio)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Krishnaraj, Chandran, E-mail: krishnarajbio@gmail.com [Department of Food Science & Technology, College of Agriculture & Life Sciences, Chonbuk National University, Jeonju 561-756 (Korea, Republic of); Harper, Stacey L. [Department of Environmental and Molecular Toxicology, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331 (United States); Yun, Soon-Il, E-mail: siyun@jbnu.ac.kr [Department of Food Science & Technology, College of Agriculture & Life Sciences, Chonbuk National University, Jeonju 561-756 (Korea, Republic of)

    2016-01-15

    Highlights: • Synthesis of AgNPs achieved using Malva crispa Linn., leaves extract. • 96 h LC{sub 50} concentration of AgNPs was observed at 142.2 μg/l in adult zebrafish. • Cytological changes and intrahepatic localization of AgNPs were demonstrated in tissues. • Presence of micronuclei and nuclear abnormalities were observed. • The mRNA expression of stress and immune response related genes were analyzed. - Abstract: The present study examines the deleterious effect of biologically synthesized silver nanoparticles in adult zebrafish. Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) used in the study were synthesized by treating AgNO{sub 3} with aqueous leaves extract of Malva crispa Linn., a medicinal herb as source of reductants. LC{sub 50} concentration of AgNPs at 96 h was observed as 142.2 μg/l. In order to explore the underlying toxicity mechanisms of AgNPs, half of the LC{sub 50} concentration (71.1 μg/l) was exposed to adult zebrafish for 14 days. Cytological changes and intrahepatic localization of AgNPs were observed in gills and liver tissues respectively, and the results concluded a possible sign for oxidative stress. In addition to oxidative stress the genotoxic effect was observed in peripheral blood cells like presence of micronuclei, nuclear abnormalities and also loss in cell contact with irregular shape was observed in liver parenchyma cells. Hence to confirm the oxidative stress and genotoxic effects the mRNA expression of stress related (MTF-1, HSP70) and immune response related (TLR4, NFKB, IL1B, CEBP, TRF, TLR22) genes were analyzed in liver tissues and the results clearly concluded that the plant extract mediated synthesis of AgNPs leads to oxidative stress and immunotoxicity in adult zebrafish.

  1. Thermal stability of hepatitis E virus assessed by a molecular biological approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Appel Bernd

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Hepatitis E virus (HEV is a pathogen of emerging concern in industrialized countries. The consumption of wild boar meat has been identified as one risk factor for autochthonous HEV infections. Only limited information is available about thermal stability of HEV, mainly due to the lack of rapid and efficient cell culture systems for measurement of HEV infectivity. Methods A molecular biological method was implemented in order to distinguish disassembled from intact viral particles using RNase treatment followed by quantitative real-time RT-PCR. The method was applied to a wild boar liver suspension containing HEV genotype 3. Results Time-course analyses indicated that the decline of protected RNA could be described by a biphasic model with an initial decrease followed by a stationary phase. The stationary phase was reached after 1 hour at 4°C, 3 days at 22°C and 7 days at 37°C with log reductions of 0.34, 0.45 and 1.24, respectively. Protected RNA was detectable until the end of the experiments at day 50 or 70. Heat exposure for 1 minute resulted in a log reduction of 0.48 at 70°C and increased with higher temperatures to 3.67 at 95°C. Although HEV infectivity titration by inoculation of the liver suspension onto three cell lines did not succeed, the results of the RNase-based method are in accordance with published cell culture-based data. Conclusions Measurement of intact viral particles using the RNase-based method may provide data on the stability of RNA viruses when cell culture-based infectivity titrations are not efficient or not available. The method enables processing of large sample numbers and may be suitable to estimate stability of HEV in different types of food.

  2. Assessing biological and chemical signatures related to nutrient removal by floating islands in stormwater mesocosms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Ni-Bin; Islam, Kamrul; Marimon, Zachary; Wanielista, Martin P

    2012-07-01

    Aquatic floating plants on BioHaven mats were tested for their potential use as a Best Management Practice to be incorporated within existing stormwater detention ponds. Plants were analyzed for their capability to remove nutrient-pollution in parallel with the study of ecological dynamics. Experiments were carried out in cylindrical mesocosms of 5 m diameter and 1.2 m height, above-ground pools with a water volume of 14 m(3). The design parameters tested were for 5% and 10% vegetated floating island coverage of the mesocosm, both with and without shoreline plants called littoral zone. This littoral shelf was 0.5 m thick, graded at a downward slope of 1:5 toward the center using loamy soil with low organic matter content, excavated from below turf grass. Endemic plant species were chosen for the experimental location in central Florida based on a wetland identification manual by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to ensure the study was not compromised by unique climate requirements of the plants. Nutrient and aquatic chemical conditions such as pH, dissolved oxygen, temperature, turbidity, and chlorophyll a were monitored to understand their relationships to the general wetland ecosystem. Real-time polymerase chain reaction analysis identified the microbial activity near the rhizospheric zone. Logistical placement considerations were made using spatial sampling across the horizontal plane of the mesocosms, beneath and around the root zone, to determine if nutrients tend to aggregate around the floating island. This study concluded that the application of floating islands as a stormwater technology can remove nutrients through plant uptake and biological activity. The most cost-effective size in the outdoor mesocosms was 5% surface area coverage of the mat. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Impact assessment of proposed ski areas: A GIS approach integrating biological, physical and landscape indicators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Geneletti, Davide

    2008-01-01

    Ski centres are characterized by significant environmental impacts that occur during both the construction and the operation phase. In Trentino, a well-known ski destination located in northern Italy, new ski areas were identified by planning tools without conducting a formal assessment of their effects on the environment. This paper presents a study to assess and compare the impacts of the proposed ski areas within two valleys strongly linked to winter tourism: the Fiemme and Fassa Valleys. The method is based on the computation of spatial indicators using a Geographical Information System (GIS) to predict and quantify critical impacts, such as ecosystem loss and fragmentation, soil erosion, geomorphologic hazards, interference with flora and fauna, and visibility. Subsequently, multicriteria analysis was applied to generate composite indices, and to rank ski areas according to their overall suitability. Finally, sensitivity analyses allowed to test the stability of the results. The study concluded that two of the proposed ski areas are located in highly unsuitable environment, and the relevant plan provisions should be revised

  4. Statistical Assessment of Solvent Mixture Models Used for Separation of Biological Active Compounds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorentz Jäntschi

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Two mathematical models with seven and six parameters have been created for use as methods for identification of the optimum mobile phase in chromatographic separations. A series of chromatographic response functions were proposed and implemented in order to assess and validate the models. The assessment was performed on a set of androstane isomers. Pearson, Spearman, Kendall tau-a,b,c and Goodman-Kruskal correlation coefficients were used in order to identify and to quantify the link and its nature (quantitative, categorical, semi-quantitative, both quantitative and categorical between experimental values and the values estimated by the mathematical models. The study revealed that the six parameter model is valid and reliable for five chromatographic response factors (retardation factor, retardation factor ordered ascending by the chromatographic peak, resolution of pairs of compound, resolution matrix of successive chromatographic peaks, and quality factor. Furthermore, the model could be used as an instrument in analysis of the quality of experimental data. The results obtained by applying the model with six parameters for deviations of rank sums suggest that the data of the experiment no. 8 are questionable.

  5. Application of expert-notice dialogue (END) method to assess students’ science communication ability on biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sriyati, S.; Amelia, D. N.; Soniyana, G. T.

    2018-05-01

    Student’s science communication ability can be assessed by the Expert-Notice Dialogue (END) method which focusing on verbal explanations using graphs or images as a tool. This study aims to apply the END method to assess students’ science communication ability. The study was conducted in two high schools with each sample of one class at each school (A and B). The number of experts in class A is 8 students and 7 in class B, the number of notice in class A 24 students and 30 in class B. The material chosen for explanation by expert is Ecosystem in class A and plant classification in class B. Research instruments are rubric of science communication ability, observation rubric, notice concept test and notice questionnaire. The implementation recorded with a video camera and then transcribed based on rubric science communication ability. The results showed that the average of science communication ability in class A and B was 60% and 61.8%, respectively, in enough categories. Mastery of the notice concept is in good category with 79.10 averages in class A and 94.64 in class B. Through the questionnaire notice it is known that the END method generally helps notice in understanding the concept.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ogunlaja, O.O.; Parker, W.J.

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2015-05-01

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

  8. A microbiology-based multi-parametric approach towards assessing biological stability in drinking water distribution networks

    KAUST Repository

    Lautenschlä ger, Karin; Hwang, Chiachi; Liu, Wentso; Boon, Nico; Kö ster, Oliver; Vrouwenvelder, Johannes S.; Egli, Thomas; Hammes, Frederik A.

    2013-01-01

    and sensitive tool to assess and evaluate biological stability and microbial processes in drinking water distribution systems. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

  9. A microbiology-based multi-parametric approach towards assessing biological stability in drinking water distribution networks

    KAUST Repository

    Lautenschläger, Karin

    2013-06-01

    and sensitive tool to assess and evaluate biological stability and microbial processes in drinking water distribution systems. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-11-01

    A banding scheme theory has been proposed to assess the potency/toxicity of biologics and assist with decisions regarding the introduction of new biologic products into existing manufacturing facilities. The current work was conducted to provide a practical example of how this scheme could be applied. Information was identified for representatives from the following four proposed bands: Band A (lethal toxins); Band B (toxins and apoptosis signals); Band C (cytokines and growth factors); and Band D (antibodies, antibody fragments, scaffold molecules, and insulins). The potency/toxicity of the representative substances was confirmed as follows: Band A, low nanogram quantities exert lethal effects; Band B, repeated administration of microgram quantities is tolerated in humans; Band C, endogenous substances and recombinant versions administered to patients in low (interferons), intermediate (growth factors), and high (interleukins) microgram doses, often on a chronic basis; and Band D, endogenous substances present or produced in the body in milligram quantities per day (insulin, collagen) or protein therapeutics administered in milligram quantities per dose (mAbs). This work confirms that substances in Bands A, B, C, and D represent very high, high, medium, and low concern with regard to risk of cross-contamination in manufacturing facilities, thus supporting the proposed banding scheme. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. An Integrated Workflow To Assess Technical and Biological Variability of Cell Population Frequencies in Human Peripheral Blood by Flow Cytometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burel, Julie G; Qian, Yu; Lindestam Arlehamn, Cecilia; Weiskopf, Daniela; Zapardiel-Gonzalo, Jose; Taplitz, Randy; Gilman, Robert H; Saito, Mayuko; de Silva, Aruna D; Vijayanand, Pandurangan; Scheuermann, Richard H; Sette, Alessandro; Peters, Bjoern

    2017-02-15

    In the context of large-scale human system immunology studies, controlling for technical and biological variability is crucial to ensure that experimental data support research conclusions. In this study, we report on a universal workflow to evaluate both technical and biological variation in multiparameter flow cytometry, applied to the development of a 10-color panel to identify all major cell populations and T cell subsets in cryopreserved PBMC. Replicate runs from a control donation and comparison of different gating strategies assessed the technical variability associated with each cell population and permitted the calculation of a quality control score. Applying our panel to a large collection of PBMC samples, we found that most cell populations showed low intraindividual variability over time. In contrast, certain subpopulations such as CD56 T cells and Temra CD4 T cells were associated with high interindividual variability. Age but not gender had a significant effect on the frequency of several populations, with a drastic decrease in naive T cells observed in older donors. Ethnicity also influenced a significant proportion of immune cell population frequencies, emphasizing the need to account for these covariates in immune profiling studies. We also exemplify the usefulness of our workflow by identifying a novel cell-subset signature of latent tuberculosis infection. Thus, our study provides a universal workflow to establish and evaluate any flow cytometry panel in systems immunology studies. Copyright © 2017 by The American Association of Immunologists, Inc.

  12. Minimal information: an urgent need to assess the functional reliability of recombinant proteins used in biological experiments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Marco Ario

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Structural characterization of proteins used in biological experiments is largely neglected. In most publications, the information available is totally insufficient to judge the functionality of the proteins used and, therefore, the significance of identified protein-protein interactions (was the interaction specific or due to unspecific binding of misfolded protein regions? or reliability of kinetic and thermodynamic data (how much protein was in its native form?. As a consequence, the results of single experiments might not only become questionable, but the whole reliability of systems biology, built on these fundaments, would be weakened. The introduction of Minimal Information concerning purified proteins to add as metadata to the main body of a manuscript would render straightforward the assessment of their functional and structural qualities and, consequently, of results obtained using these proteins. Furthermore, accepted standards for protein annotation would simplify data comparison and exchange. This article has been envisaged as a proposal for aggregating scientists who share the opinion that the scientific community needs a platform for Minimum Information for Protein Functionality Evaluation (MIPFE.

  13. Assessment of pollution in road runoff using a Bufo viridis biological assay

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dorchin, A.; Shanas, U.

    2010-01-01

    Road runoff is a major source of environmental pollution, significantly threatening nearby aquatic habitats. Chemical analyses indicate high pollutant concentrations in the road's 'first flush', but bioassays are more advantageous for addressing the cumulative effects of the numerous pollutants within the runoff. We used Bufo viridis embryos and larvae to assess the toxicity of road runoff from two major highways in Israel. We show, for the first time, that exposure to midseason runoff not only has an adverse effect on growth and development rates of B. viridis larvae but can also lead to increased rates of morphological deformations. Seasonal first flushes, despite having higher metal concentrations, did not adversely affect the toad larvae, apparently due to a counter effect of organic matter that potentially served as a supplementary energy resource. Road runoff can be a major cause for a qualitative decrease in the quality of aquatic habitats threatening amphibians in Israel. - Highway runoff has detrimental effects on the development of B. viridis larvae.

  14. Environmental biodosimetry: a biologically relevant tool for ecological risk assessment and biomonitoring

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ulsh, B. E-mail: ulshb@mcmaster.ca; Hinton, T.G.; Congdon, J.D.; Dugan, L.C.; Whicker, F.W.; Bedford, J.S

    2003-07-01

    Biodosimetry, the estimation of received doses by determining the frequency of radiation-induced chromosome aberrations, is widely applied in humans acutely exposed as a result of accidents or for clinical purposes, but biodosimetric techniques have not been utilized in organisms chronically exposed to radionuclides in contaminated environments. The application of biodosimetry to environmental exposure scenarios could greatly improve the accuracy, and reduce the uncertainties, of ecological risk assessments and biomonitoring studies, because no assumptions are required regarding external exposure rates and the movement of organisms into and out of contaminated areas. Furthermore, unlike residue analyses of environmental media environmental biodosimetry provides a genetically relevant biomarker of cumulative lifetime exposure. Symmetrical chromosome translocations can impact reproductive success, and could therefore prove to be ecologically relevant as well. We describe our experience in studying aberrations in the yellow-bellied slider turtle as an example of environmental biodosimetry.

  15. Assessment of pollution in road runoff using a Bufo viridis biological assay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorchin, A; Shanas, U

    2010-12-01

    Road runoff is a major source of environmental pollution, significantly threatening nearby aquatic habitats. Chemical analyses indicate high pollutant concentrations in the road's "first flush", but bioassays are more advantageous for addressing the cumulative effects of the numerous pollutants within the runoff. We used Bufo viridis embryos and larvae to assess the toxicity of road runoff from two major highways in Israel. We show, for the first time, that exposure to midseason runoff not only has an adverse effect on growth and development rates of B. viridis larvae but can also lead to increased rates of morphological deformations. Seasonal first flushes, despite having higher metal concentrations, did not adversely affect the toad larvae, apparently due to a counter effect of organic matter that potentially served as a supplementary energy resource. Road runoff can be a major cause for a qualitative decrease in the quality of aquatic habitats threatening amphibians in Israel. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Assessing twenty-first century skills through a teacher created video game for high school biology students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Annetta, Leonard A.; Cheng, Meng-Tzu; Holmes, Shawn

    2010-07-01

    As twenty-first century skills become a greater focus in K-12 education, an infusion of technology that meets the needs of today's students is paramount. This study looks at the design and creation of a Multiplayer Educational Gaming Application (MEGA) for high school biology students. The quasi-experimental, qualitative design assessed the twenty-first century skills of digital age literacy, inventive thinking, high productivity, and effective communication techniques of the students exposed to a MEGA. Three factors, as they pertained to these skills, emerged from classroom observations. Interaction with the teacher, discussion with peers, and engagement/time-on-task while playing the MEGA suggested that students playing an educational video game exhibited all of the projected twenty-first century skills while being engrossed in the embedded science content.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2006-09-19

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

  18. An Evaluation of Two Different Methods of Assessing Independent Investigations in an Operational Pre-University Level Examination in Biology in England.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Chris

    1998-01-01

    Explored aspects of assessment of extended investigation ("project") practiced in the operational examinations of The University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate (UCLES) for the perspective of construct validity. Samples of the 1993 (n=333) and 1996 (n=259) biology test results reveal two methods of assessing the project. (MAK)

  19. Role of serum eosinophil cationic protein as a biological marker to assess the severity of bronchial asthma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Begum, A.; Sattar, H.; Miah, R.A.; Saleh, A.A.; Hassan, R.; Salam, A

    2012-01-01

    Objective: The study was carried out to evaluate the role of serum eosinophil cationic protein (ECP) as a biological marker for the diagnosis and to assess the severity of bronchial asthma. Methodology: This observational cross-sectional study was conducted among 70 bronchial asthma patients and 45 disease controls (tuberculosis-15, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease-15, interstitial lung disease-15) enrolled from patients attending the outpatient department of the National Institute of Disease of the Chest and Hospital (NIDCH), Dhaka, Bangladesh during July 2010 to June 2011. Global Initiative of Asthma Management and Prevention (GINA) criteria were followed for selection of both atopic and non-atopic patients with intermittent or persistent (mild, moderate and severe) asthma. Serum level of eosinophil cationic protein (ECP), IgE, forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV 1% predicted) and circulatory eosinophil (CE) count were estimated. Results: Mean serum ECP level (28.8 +- 42.9 vs. 6.82 +- 3.5 ng/mL; P<0.001), IgE level (383.59 - 225.3 vs. 135 +- 131.8 IU/mL; P<0.001) and percent circulatory eosinophil count (9.95 +- 3.7 vs. 5.95 +- 1.4; P<0.024) were all found significantly raised among asthma patients than disease controls but % FEV1 was equivocal. All grades of persistent asthma patients had significantly (P<0.025 and P<0.002) higher mean ECP level than intermittent cases but serum IgE level and CE count did not differ significantly. FEV1 % predicted correlated well among moderate and severe persistent asthma but was equivocal for intermittent and mild persistent cases. Conclusion: This study has reinforced that serum eosinophil cationic protein is a dependable biological marker with more discriminatory power over other indicators for bronchial asthma and to assess its severity. (author)

  20. A Comparative Assessment of Biological Effects and Chemical Profile of Italian Asphodeline lutea Extracts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dora Melucci

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The present study aims to highlight the therapeutic potential of Asphodeline lutea (AL, a wild edible plant of the Mediterranean diet. Roots, aerial parts, and flowers of AL at two different phenological stages were collected from three locations in Italy. The inhibitory activities of extracts on strategic enzymes linked to human diseases were assessed. The antioxidant properties were evaluated in vitro, using six standard bioassays. The phenolic and anthraquinone profiles were also established using HPLC-PDA. Zinc, cadmium, lead, and copper contents were also determined. All the samples inhibited acetylcholinesterase (from 1.51 to 2.20 mg GALAEs/g extract, tyrosinase (from 7.50 to 25.3 mg KAEs/g extract, and α-amylase (from 0.37 to 0.51 mmol ACAEs/g extract. Aloe-emodin and physcion were present in all parts, while rhein was not detected. The phenolic profile and the heavy metals composition of specimens gathered from three different regions of Italy were different. It can be argued that samples collected near the street can contain higher concentrations of heavy metals. The experimental data confirm that the A. lutea species could be considered as a potential source of bioactive metabolites, and its consumption could play a positive and safe role in human health maintenance.

  1. Transforming Biology Assessment with Machine Learning: Automated Scoring of Written Evolutionary Explanations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nehm, Ross H.; Ha, Minsu; Mayfield, Elijah

    2012-02-01

    This study explored the use of machine learning to automatically evaluate the accuracy of students' written explanations of evolutionary change. Performance of the Summarization Integrated Development Environment (SIDE) program was compared to human expert scoring using a corpus of 2,260 evolutionary explanations written by 565 undergraduate students in response to two different evolution instruments (the EGALT-F and EGALT-P) that contained prompts that differed in various surface features (such as species and traits). We tested human-SIDE scoring correspondence under a series of different training and testing conditions, using Kappa inter-rater agreement values of greater than 0.80 as a performance benchmark. In addition, we examined the effects of response length on scoring success; that is, whether SIDE scoring models functioned with comparable success on short and long responses. We found that SIDE performance was most effective when scoring models were built and tested at the individual item level and that performance degraded when suites of items or entire instruments were used to build and test scoring models. Overall, SIDE was found to be a powerful and cost-effective tool for assessing student knowledge and performance in a complex science domain.

  2. Biological assessment for rare and endangered plant species: Related to CERCLA characterization activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sackschewsky, M.R.

    1992-04-01

    Environmental characterization in support of hazardous, radioactive, and mixed waste cleanup (in accordance with the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980) can involve a large number of both nonintrusive and intrusive activities. Many of these activities could have a detrimental impact on listed plant species. These impacts can be minimized by following simple conservation policies while conducting the various field activities. For instance, frequent off-road vehicular traffic and have a severe impact on native habitats and, therefore, should be kept to a minimum. Personnel performing the field activities should be trained to preserve, respect, and minimize their impact on native habitat while performing work in the field. In addition, areas where sampling is planned should be surveyed for the presence of listed plant species before the initiation of the field activities. Extremely distributed areas could be exempted from this requirement provided adequate habitat assessments have been performed by qualified personnel. Twelve special status plant species are known to survive on or very near the Hanford Site. None of these species currently are listed as Federal Threatened or Endangered Species. However, four local species currently are candidates for federal protection. These species are the Northern Wormwood (Artemisia campestris ssp. borealis var. wormskioldii), Persistantsepal Yellowcress (Rorippa columbiae), Hoover's Desert Parsley (Lomatium tuberosum), and Columbia Milkvetch (Astragalus columbianus)

  3. Omics Meets Biology: Application to the Design and Preclinical Assessment of Antivenoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan J. Calvete

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Snakebite envenoming represents a neglected tropical disease that has a heavy public health impact worldwide, mostly affecting poor people involved in agricultural activities in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Oceania. A key issue that complicates the treatment of snakebite envenomings is the poor availability of the only validated treatment for this disease, antivenoms. Antivenoms can be an efficacious treatment for snakebite envenoming, provided they are safe, effective, affordable, accessible and administered appropriately. The shortage of antivenoms in various regions, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa and some parts of Asia, can be significantly alleviated by optimizing the use of current antivenoms and by the generation of novel polyspecific antivenoms having a wide spectrum of efficacy. Complementing preclinical testing of antivenom efficacy using in vivo and in vitro functional neutralization assays, developments in venomics and antivenomics are likely to revolutionize the design and preclinical assessment of antivenoms by being able to test new antivenom preparations and to predict their paraspecific neutralization to the level of species-specific toxins.

  4. Physicochemical characterization of spray-dried PLGA/PEG microspheres, and preliminary assessment of biological response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Javiya, Curie; Jonnalagadda, Sriramakamal

    2016-09-01

    The use of spray-drying to prepare blended PLGA:PEG microspheres with lower immune detection. To study physical properties, polymer miscibility and alveolar macrophage response for blended PLGA:PEG microspheres prepared by a laboratory-scale spray-drying process. Microspheres were prepared by spray-drying 0-20% w/w ratios of PLGA 65:35 and PEG 3350 in dichloromethane. Particle size and morphology was studied using scanning electron microscopy. Polymer miscibility and residual solvent levels evaluated by thermal analysis (differential scanning calorimetry - DSC and thermogravimetric analysis - TGA). Immunogenicity was assessed in vitro by response of rat alveolar macrophages (NR8383) by the MTT-based cell viability assay and reactive oxygen species (ROS) detection. The spray dried particles were spherical, with a size range of about 2-3 µm and a yield of 16-60%. Highest yield was obtained at 1% PEG concentration. Thermal analysis showed a melting peak at 59 °C (enthalpy: 170.61 J/g) and a degradation-onset of 180 °C for PEG 3350. PLGA 65:35 was amorphous, with a Tg of 43 °C. Blended PLGA:PEG microspheres showed a delayed degradation-onset of 280 °C, and PEG enthalpy-loss corresponding to 15% miscibility of PEG in PLGA. NR8383 viability studies and ROS detection upon exposure to these cells suggested that blended PLGA:PEG microspheres containing 1 and 5% PEG are optimal in controling cell proliferation and activation. This research establishes the feasibility of using a spray-drying process to prepare spherical particles (2-3 µm) of molecularly-blended PLGA 65:35 and PEG 3350. A PEG concentration of 1-5% was optimal to maximize process yield, with minimal potential for immune detection.

  5. Assessing the Extent of Sediment Contamination Around Creosote-treated Pilings Through Chemical and Biological Analyses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stefansson, E. S.

    2008-12-01

    Creosote is a common wood preservative used to treat marine structures, such as docks and bulkheads. Treated dock pilings continually leach polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and other creosote compounds into the surrounding water and sediment. Over time, these compounds can accumulate in marine sediments, reaching much greater concentrations than those in seawater. The purpose of this study was to assess the extent of creosote contamination in sediments, at a series of distances from treated pilings. Three pilings were randomly selected from a railroad trestle in Fidalgo Bay, WA and sediment samples were collected at four distances from each: 0 meters, 0.5 meters, 1 meter, and 2 meters. Samples were used to conduct two bioassays: an amphipod bioassay (Rhepoxynius abronius) and a sand dollar embryo bioassay. Grain size and PAH content (using a fluorometric method) were also measured. Five samples in the amphipod bioassay showed significantly lower effective survival than the reference sediment. These consisted of samples closest to the piling at 0 and 0.5 meters. One 0 m sample in the sand dollar embryo bioassay also showed a significantly lower percentage of normal embryos than the reference sediment. Overall, results strongly suggest that creosote-contaminated sediments, particularly those closest to treated pilings, can negatively affect both amphipods and echinoderm embryos. Although chemical data were somewhat ambiguous, 0 m samples had the highest levels of PAHs, which corresponded to the lowest average survival in both bioassays. Relatively high levels of PAHs were found as far as 2 meters away from pilings. Therefore, we cannot say how far chemical contamination can spread from creosote-treated pilings, and at what distance this contamination can still affect marine organisms. These results, as well as future research, are essential to the success of proposed piling removal projects. In addition to creosote-treated pilings, contaminated sediments must

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2012-05-01

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

  7. Molecular biology methods in assessing radiation-induced hereditary risks in humans

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kiuru, A.

    2004-12-01

    Effort to predict the genetic consequences for humans of exposure to ionising radiation has been one of the most important issues of human genetics over the past 60 years. To date, there has been little experimental knowledge on the genetic risks of human exposure to ionising radiation. Radiation-induced deleterious hereditary effects have not been detected in human populations - not even among the offspring of atomic bomb survivors in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. This does not mean deleterious hereditary effects do not exist in humans, but rather that they are small and/or difficult to detect because the normal incidence of inherited abnormalities is quite high in the human population. Thus, assessment of radiation-induced hereditary risks in humans has been based on the common knowledge of human heredity and on animal experiments. However, recent data have suggested that hyper-variable tandem repeat minisatellite loci provide a useful and sensitive experimental approach for monitoring radiation-induced germline mutations in humans. In order to investigate the feasibility of the minisatellite mutation screening system in assessing radiation-induced hereditary risks in humans, we examined the amount of hereditary minisatellite mutations among the offspring of Estonian Chernobyl cleanup workers. The men studied received a median radiation dose of 109 mSv while working on the cleanup activities after the Chernobyl accident. We compared the minisatellite mutation rates of 155 children born to 147 Estonian Chernobyl cleanup workers after the accident to those of their 148 siblings born prior to it. In addition, 44 Estonian families, where the father had not been exposed to radiation, composed an additional control group. In all of these families, the paternity of the children was ascertained by using 5 minisatellite loci (APOB, HRAS, MCOB19, MCT118, and YNZ-22) in PCR-based analyses. Other 8 minisatellite loci (B6.7, CEB1, CEB15, CEB25, CEB36, MS1, MS31, and MS32) were used

  8. Looking at biological community level to improve ecotoxicological assessment of freshwater sediments: report on a first French-Swiss workshop.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pesce, Stéphane; Perceval, Olivier; Bonnineau, Chloé; Casado-Martinez, Carmen; Dabrin, Aymeric; Lyautey, Emilie; Naffrechoux, Emmanuel; Ferrari, Benoit J D

    2018-01-01

    The first French-Swiss workshop on ecotoxicology of freshwater sediment communities was co-organized by the French Research Institute of Science and Technology for Environment and Agriculture (Irstea) and the Swiss Centre for Applied Ecotoxicology (Ecotox Centre EAWAG-EPFL) in Villié-Morgon (Beaujolais Region, France) on April 27-28, 2017. The workshop brought together scientists working in different fields of expertise (ecotoxicologists, ecologists, environmental chemists…), environmental stakeholder groups and managers, as well as economic players (start-ups and consultancies) to better connect research needs of potential end-users with research outputs. The objectives of this workshop were (i) to establish the state of the art of research in the characterization of sediment contamination and in the evaluation of the effects on sediment-associated biological communities and ecosystem functioning and (ii) to give an overview of the French and Swiss regulations dealing with the assessment of contaminated sediments in freshwater ecosystems. The ultimate goal was to collectively identify research needs and knowledge gaps, as well as to highlight ways to improve the ecotoxicological assessment of sediments in freshwater environments by further considering the structure and functions of associated microbial and invertebrate communities.

  9. Quantum Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Sergi

    2009-06-01

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

  10. Assessing the status of biological control as a management tool for suppression of invasive alien plants in South Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Zachariades, Costas; Paterson, Iain D.; Strathie, Lorraine W.; Hill, Martin P.; van Wilgen, Brian W.

    2017-01-01

    Background: Biological control of invasive alien plants (IAPs) using introduced natural enemies contributes significantly to sustained, cost-effective management of natural resources in South Africa. The status of, and prospects for, biological control is therefore integral to National Status Reports (NSRs) on Biological Invasions, the first of which is due in 2017. Objectives: Our aim was to evaluate the status of, and prospects for, biological control of IAPs in South Africa. We discuss...

  11. 76 FR 13597 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-03-14

    ... Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent for Hawkweeds AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection... States as a biological control agent to reduce the severity of infestations of hawkweeds (Hieracium spp..., into the continental United States for the biological control of hawkweeds (Hieracium pilosella, H...

  12. Functional genomics to assess biological responses to marine pollution at physiological and evolutionary timescales: toward a vision of predictive ecotoxicology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reid, Noah M; Whitehead, Andrew

    2016-09-01

    Marine pollution is ubiquitous, and is one of the key factors influencing contemporary marine biodiversity worldwide. To protect marine biodiversity, how do we surveil, document and predict the short- and long-term impacts of pollutants on at-risk species? Modern genomics tools offer high-throughput, information-rich and increasingly cost-effective approaches for characterizing biological responses to environmental stress, and are important tools within an increasing sophisticated kit for surveiling and assessing impacts of pollutants on marine species. Through the lens of recent research in marine killifish, we illustrate how genomics tools may be useful for screening chemicals and pollutants for biological activity and to reveal specific mechanisms of action. The high dimensionality of transcriptomic responses enables their usage as highly specific fingerprints of exposure, and these fingerprints can be used to diagnose environmental problems. We also emphasize that molecular pathways recruited to respond at physiological timescales are the same pathways that may be targets for natural selection during chronic exposure to pollutants. Gene complement and sequence variation in those pathways can be related to variation in sensitivity to environmental pollutants within and among species. Furthermore, allelic variation associated with evolved tolerance in those pathways could be tracked to estimate the pace of environmental health decline and recovery. We finish by integrating these paradigms into a vision of how genomics approaches could anchor a modernized framework for advancing the predictive capacity of environmental and ecotoxicological science. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  13. Physical-chemical characterization and biological assessment of simple and lithium-doped biological-derived hydroxyapatite thin films for a new generation of metallic implants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popescu, A. C.; Florian, P. E.; Stan, G. E.; Popescu-Pelin, G.; Zgura, I.; Enculescu, M.; Oktar, F. N.; Trusca, R.; Sima, L. E.; Roseanu, A.; Duta, L.

    2018-05-01

    We report on the synthesis by PLD of simple and lithium-doped biological-origin hydroxyapatite (HA) films. The role of doping reagents (Li2CO3, Li3PO4) on the morphology, structure, chemical composition, bonding strength and cytocompatibility of the films was investigated. SEM investigations of the films evidenced a surface morphology consisting of particles with mean diameters of (5-7) μm. GIXRD analyses demonstrated that the synthesized structures consisted of HA phase only, with different degrees of crystallinity, mainly influenced by the doping reagent type. After only three days of immersion in simulated body fluid, FTIR spectra showed a remarkable growth of a biomimetic apatitic film, indicative of a high biomineralization capacity of the coatings. EDS analyses revealed a quasi-stoichiometric target-to-substrate transfer, the values inferred for the Ca/P ratio corresponding to a biological apatite. All synthesized structures displayed a hydrophilic behavior, suitable for attachment of osteoblast cells. In vitro cell viability tests showed that the presence of Li2CO3 and Li3PO4 as doping reagents promoted the hMSC growth on film surfaces. Taking into consideration these enhanced characteristics, corroborated with a low fabrication cost generated by sustainable resources, one should consider the lithium-doped biological-derived materials as promising prospective solutions for a next generation of coated implants with rapid osteointegration.

  14. A microbiology-based multi-parametric approach towards assessing biological stability in drinking water distribution networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lautenschlager, Karin; Hwang, Chiachi; Liu, Wen-Tso; Boon, Nico; Köster, Oliver; Vrouwenvelder, Hans; Egli, Thomas; Hammes, Frederik

    2013-06-01

    provides a powerful and sensitive tool to assess and evaluate biological stability and microbial processes in drinking water distribution systems. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Technical Assessment: Synthetic Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-01

    Pfizer, Bausch & Lomb, Coca - Cola , and other Fortune 500 companies 8 Data estimated by the... financial prize for ideas to drive forward the production of a sensor relying on synthetic organisms that can detect exposure to 500 specific chemicals

  16. Comparison Between Water Quality Index (WQI) and Biological Water Quality Index (BWQI) for Water Quality Assessment: Case Study of Melana River, Johor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nor Zaiha Arman; Mohd Ismid Mohd Said; Shamila Azman; Muhammad Hazim Mat Hussin

    2013-01-01

    A study of water quality in Melana River, Johor was carried out in three consecutive months (March - May 2012). This study aims to determine the comparative results through biological monitoring as well as conventional method (physical and chemical analysis). Assessment is carried out through collection and identification of the biological indicator which comprises of macro benthos based on Biological Water Quality Index (BWQI). Comparison was done based on two methods namely invertebrate analysis and also laboratory analysis. For invertebrate analysis, Melana River consist of three types of Family groups namely Nymphs, Larvae and Molluscs. The result for Water Quality Index (WQI) and also Biological Water Quality Index (BWQI) analysis showed that the level of Melana River is polluted and classified in Class III. This study shows that even though different methods were used, the similar results were obtained for both rivers and can be applied to any river to identify their level of cleanliness. (author)

  17. Alcohol intoxication at Swedish football matches: A study using biological sampling to assess blood alcohol concentration levels among spectators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalie Durbeej

    Full Text Available Alcohol use and alcohol-related problems, including accidents, vandalism and violence, at sporting events are of increased concern in Sweden and other countries. The relationship between alcohol use and violence has been established and can be explained by the level of intoxication. Given the occurrence of alcohol use and alcohol-related problems at sporting events, research has assessed intoxication levels measured through biological sampling among spectators. This cross-sectional study aimed to assess the level of alcohol intoxication among spectators at football matches in the Swedish Premier Football League. Spectators were randomly selected and invited to participate in the study. Alcohol intoxication was measured with a breath analyser for Blood Alcohol Concentration levels, and data on gender, age, and recent alcohol use were gathered through a face-to-face interview. Blood Alcohol Concentration samples from 4420 spectators were collected. Almost half (46.8% had a positive Blood Alcohol Concentration level, with a mean value of 0.063%, while 8.9% had a Blood Alcohol Concentration level ≥ 0.1%, with a mean value of 0.135%. Factors that predicted a higher Blood Alcohol Concentration level included male gender (p = 0.005, lower age (p < 0.001, attending a local derby (p < 0.001, alcohol use prior to having entered the arena (p < 0.001, attending a weekend match (p < 0.001, and being a spectator at supporter sections (p < 0.001. About half of all spectators at football matches in the Swedish Premier Football League drink alcohol in conjunction with the match. Approximately one tenth have a high level of alcohol intoxication.

  18. Uncertainty assessment of a model for biological nitrogen and phosphorus removal: Application to a large wastewater treatment plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mannina, Giorgio; Cosenza, Alida; Viviani, Gaspare

    In the last few years, the use of mathematical models in WasteWater Treatment Plant (WWTP) processes has become a common way to predict WWTP behaviour. However, mathematical models generally demand advanced input for their implementation that must be evaluated by an extensive data-gathering campaign, which cannot always be carried out. This fact, together with the intrinsic complexity of the model structure, leads to model results that may be very uncertain. Quantification of the uncertainty is imperative. However, despite the importance of uncertainty quantification, only few studies have been carried out in the wastewater treatment field, and those studies only included a few of the sources of model uncertainty. Seeking the development of the area, the paper presents the uncertainty assessment of a mathematical model simulating biological nitrogen and phosphorus removal. The uncertainty assessment was conducted according to the Generalised Likelihood Uncertainty Estimation (GLUE) methodology that has been scarcely applied in wastewater field. The model was based on activated-sludge models 1 (ASM) and 2 (ASM2). Different approaches can be used for uncertainty analysis. The GLUE methodology requires a large number of Monte Carlo simulations in which a random sampling of individual parameters drawn from probability distributions is used to determine a set of parameter values. Using this approach, model reliability was evaluated based on its capacity to globally limit the uncertainty. The method was applied to a large full-scale WWTP for which quantity and quality data was gathered. The analysis enabled to gain useful insights for WWTP modelling identifying the crucial aspects where higher uncertainty rely and where therefore, more efforts should be provided in terms of both data gathering and modelling practises.

  19. Validation of an Instrument for Assessing Conceptual Change with Respect to the Theory of Evolution by Secondary Biology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goff, Kevin David

    This pilot study evaluated the validity of a new quantitative, closed-response instrument for assessing student conceptual change regarding the theory of evolution. The instrument has two distinguishing design features. First, it is designed not only to gauge student mastery of the scientific model of evolution, but also to elicit a trio of deeply intuitive tendencies that are known to compromise many students' understanding: the projection of intentional agency, teleological directionality, and immutable essences onto biological phenomena. Second, in addition to a section of conventional multiple choice questions, the instrument contains a series of items where students may simultaneously endorse both scientifically normative propositions and intuitively appealing yet unscientific propositions, without having to choose between them. These features allow for the hypothesized possibility that the three intuitions are partly innate, themselves products of cognitive evolution in our hominin ancestors, and thus may continue to inform students' thinking even after instruction and conceptual change. The test was piloted with 340 high school students from diverse schools and communities. Confirmatory factor analysis and other statistical methods provided evidence that the instrument already has strong potential for validly distinguishing students who hold a correct scientific understanding from those who do not, but that revision and retesting are needed to render it valid for gauging students' adherence to intuitive misconceptions. Ultimately the instrument holds promise as a tool for classroom intervention studies by conceptual change researchers, for diagnostic testing and data gathering by instructional leaders, and for provoking classroom dialogue and debate by science teachers.

  20. The value of DCE-MRI in assessing histopathological and molecular biological features in induced rat epithelial ovarian carcinomas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Su Juan; Qiao, Tian Kui; Qiang, Jin Wei; Cai, Song Qi; Li, Ruo Kun

    2017-09-26

    To investigate dynamic contrast enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (DCE-MRI) for assessing histopathological and molecular biological features in induced rat epithelial ovarian carcinomas (EOCs). 7,12-dimethylbenz[A]anthracene (DMBA) was applied to induce EOCs in situ in 46 SD rats. Conventional MRI and DCE-MRI were performed to evaluate the morphology and perfusion features of the tumors, including the time-signal intensity curve (TIC), volume transfer constant (K trans ), rate constant (K ep ), extravascular extracellular space volume ratio (V e ) and initial area under the curve (IAUC). DCE-MRI parameters were correlated with histological grade, microvascular density (MVD), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and fraction of Ki67-positive cells and the serum level of cancer antigen 125 (CA125). Thirty-five of the 46 rats developed EOCs. DCE-MRI showed type III TIC more frequently than type II (29/35 vs. 6/35, p values showed significant differences in different histological grades in overall and pairwise comparisons except for IAUC in grade 2 vs. grade 3 (all p values among the three grade groups (p > 0.05). K trans , K ep and IAUC values were positively correlated with MVD, VEGF and Ki67 expression (all p  0.05). TIC types and perfusion parameters of DCE-MRI can reflect tumor grade, angiogenesis and cell proliferation to some extent, thereby helping treatment planning and predicting prognosis.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon van Mourik

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Multi-parameter models in systems biology are typically ‘sloppy’: some parameters or combinations of parameters may be hard to estimate from data, whereas others are not. One might expect that parameter uncertainty automatically leads to uncertain predictions, but this is not the case. We illustrate this by showing that the prediction uncertainty of each of six sloppy models varies enormously among different predictions. Statistical approximations of parameter uncertainty may lead to dramatic errors in prediction uncertainty estimation. We argue that prediction uncertainty assessment must therefore be performed on a per-prediction basis using a full computational uncertainty analysis. In practice this is feasible by providing a model with a sample or ensemble representing the distribution of its parameters. Within a Bayesian framework, such a sample may be generated by a Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC algorithm that infers the parameter distribution based on experimental data. Matlab code for generating the sample (with the Differential Evolution Markov Chain sampler and the subsequent uncertainty analysis using such a sample, is supplied as Supplemental Information.

  2. Characterization of a multiculture in-vitro cell exposure chamber for assessing the biological impact of diesel engine exhaust

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Asimakopoulou, Akrivi; Daskalos, Manos; Chasapidis, Leonidas; Akritidis, Theofilaktos; Vlachos, Nickolaos D; Papaioannou, Eleni; Konstandopoulos, Athanasios G

    2011-01-01

    In order to study the various health influencing parameters related to particulate as well as to gas-phase pollutants emitted by Diesel engine exhaust, there is an urgent need for appropriate sampling devices and methods for cell exposure studies and associated biological and toxicological tests. In a previous paper [1], a specific concept for a cell culture exposure chamber was introduced to allow the uniform exposure of cell cultures to diesel aerosols. In the present work, this cell culture exposure chamber is evaluated and characterized with state-of-the-art nanoparticles measurement instrumentation to assess the local deposition of soot aggregates on the cell cultures and any losses due to particle deposition on the cell culture exposure chamber walls, and in addition an upgraded Multiculture Exposure Chamber (MEC) for in vitro continuous flow cell exposure tests is introduced with improved, compared to the previous version, features. Analysis and design of the MEC employs CFD and true to geometry representations of soot particle aggregates.

  3. Assessment of temporal and spatial evolution of bacterial communities in a biological sand filter mesocosm treating winery wastewater.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramond, J-B; Welz, P J; Tuffin, M I; Burton, S G; Cowan, D A

    2013-07-01

    To assess the impact of winery wastewater (WW) on biological sand filter (BSF) bacterial community structures, and to evaluate whether BSFs can constitute alternative and valuable treatment- processes to remediate WW. During 112 days, WW was used to contaminate a BSF mesocosm (length 173 cm/width 106 cm/depth 30 cm). The effect of WW on bacterial communities of four BSF microenvironments (surface/deep, inlet/outlet) was investigated using terminal-restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP). BSF achieved high Na (95·1%), complete Cl and almost complete chemical oxygen demand (COD) (98·0%) and phenolic (99·2%) removals. T-RFLP analysis combined with anosim revealed that WW significantly modified the surface and deep BSF bacterial communities. BSF provided high COD, phenolic and salt removals throughout the experiment. WW-selected bacterial communities were thus able to tolerate and/or degrade WW, suggesting that community composition does not alter BSF performances. However, biomass increased significantly in the WW-impacted surface sediments, which could later lead to system clogging and should thus be monitored. BSFs constitute alternatives to constructed wetlands to treat agri effluents such as WW. To our knowledge, this study is the first unravelling the responses of BSF bacterial communities to contamination and suggests that WW-selected BSF communities maintained high removal performances. Journal of Applied Microbiology © 2013 The Society for Applied Microbiology.

  4. Biological basis of detoxication

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Caldwell, John; Jakoby, William B

    1983-01-01

    This volume considers that premise that most of the major patterns of biological conversion of foreign compounds are known and may have predictive value in assessing the biological course for novel compounds...

  5. SU-G-TeP3-07: On the Development of Mechano-Biological Assessment of Leukemia Cells Using Optical Tweezers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brost, E; Brooks, J; Piepenburg, J; Watanabe, Y; Hui, S [Therapeutic Radiology and Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN (United States); Chakraborty, S; Das, T [Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems Department of New Materials and Biosystems Department of Mechanical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur (India); Green, A [Department of Physics, University of Saint Thomas, Saint Paul, MN (United States)

    2016-06-15

    Purpose: Patients with BCR-ABL (Ph +ve) acute lymphoblastic leukemia are at very high risk of relapse and mortality. In line with the NIH mission to understand the physical and biological processes, we seek to report mechano-biological method to assessment and distinguish treated/untreated leukemia cells. Methods: BCR-ABL leukemia cell populations and silica microspheres were trapped in a 100x magnification optical trapping system (λ=660 nm, 70 mW). Light refracted through the trapped sample was collected in the back focal plane by a quadrant detector to measure the positions of individual cells. The sample was driven at a known frequency and amplitude with a flexure translation stage, and the target’s response was recorded. The measured response was calibrated using the known driving parameters, and information about cell movements due to mechano-biological effects was extracted. Two leukemia cell populations were tested: a control group and a group treated with 2 Gy. Results: The mechano-biological movements of 10 microspheres, control cells, and treated cells were tracked over a ∼30 minute window at 1 minute intervals. The microsphere population did not see significant change in mechano-biological movements over the testing interval and remained constant. The control cell population saw a two-fold rise in activity that peaked around 1200 seconds, then dropped off sharply. The treated cell population saw a two-fold rise in activity that peaked at 400 seconds, and dropped off slowly. Conclusion: The investigated technique allows for direct measurement the movements of a trapped object due to mechano-biological effects such as thermal and extracellular motion. When testing microspheres, the mechano-biological activity remained constant over time due to the lack of biological factors. In both the control and treated cell populations, the mechano-biological activity was increased, possibly due to mitochondrial activation. This extra activity decreased over time

  6. Assessment of beta-emitter radionuclides in biological samples using liquid scintillation counting. Application to the study of internal doses in molecular and cellular biology techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sierra, I.; Delgado, A.; Navarro, T.; Macias, M. T.

    2007-01-01

    The radioisotopic techniques used in Molecular and Cellular Biology involve external and internal irradiation risk. It is necessary to control the possible internal contamination associated to the development of these techniques. The internal contamination risk can be due to physical and chemical properties of the labelled compounds, aerosols generated during the performance technique. The aim of this work was to estimate the possible intake of specific beta emitters during the technique development and to propose the required criterions to perform Individual Monitoring. The most representative radioisotopic techniques were selected attending their potential risk of internal contamination. Techniques were analysed applying IAEA methodology according to the used activity in each technique. It was necessary to identify the worker groups that would require individual monitoring on the base of their specific risk. Different measurement procedures were applied to study the possible intake in group risk and more than 160 persons were measured by in vitro bioassay. (Author) 96 refs

  7. SYMBIOSIS: Development, Implementation, and Assessment of a Model Curriculum across Biology and Mathematics at the Introductory Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Depelteau, Audrey M.; Joplin, Karl H.; Govett, Aimee; Miller, Hugh A., III; Seier, Edith

    2010-01-01

    With the support of the East Tennessee State University (ETSU) administration and a grant from Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the departments of Biological Sciences, Mathematics and Statistics, and Curriculum and Instruction have developed a biology-math integrated curriculum. An interdisciplinary faculty team, charged with teaching the 18…

  8. Teaching cell biology in the large-enrollment classroom: methods to promote analytical thinking and assessment of their effectiveness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kitchen, Elizabeth; Bell, John D; Reeve, Suzanne; Sudweeks, Richard R; Bradshaw, William S

    2003-01-01

    A large-enrollment, undergraduate cellular biology lecture course is described whose primary goal is to help students acquire skill in the interpretation of experimental data. The premise is that this kind of analytical reasoning is not intuitive for most people and, in the absence of hands-on laboratory experience, will not readily develop unless instructional methods and examinations specifically designed to foster it are employed. Promoting scientific thinking forces changes in the roles of both teacher and student. We describe didactic strategies that include directed practice of data analysis in a workshop format, active learning through verbal and written communication, visualization of abstractions diagrammatically, and the use of ancillary small-group mentoring sessions with faculty. The implications for a teacher in reducing the breadth and depth of coverage, becoming coach instead of lecturer, and helping students to diagnose cognitive weaknesses are discussed. In order to determine the efficacy of these strategies, we have carefully monitored student performance and have demonstrated a large gain in a pre- and posttest comparison of scores on identical problems, improved test scores on several successive midterm examinations when the statistical analysis accounts for the relative difficulty of the problems, and higher scores in comparison to students in a control course whose objective was information transfer, not acquisition of reasoning skills. A novel analytical index (student mobility profile) is described that demonstrates that this improvement was not random, but a systematic outcome of the teaching/learning strategies employed. An assessment of attitudes showed that, in spite of finding it difficult, students endorse this approach to learning, but also favor curricular changes that would introduce an analytical emphasis earlier in their training.

  9. Molecular biology based assessment of green tea effects on oxidative stress and cardiac remodelling in dialysis patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calo, Lorenzo A; Vertolli, Ugo; Davis, Paul A; Maso, Lucia Dal; Pagnin, Elisa; Ravarotto, Verdiana; Maiolino, Giuseppe; Lupia, Mario; Seccia, Teresa M; Rossi, Gian Paolo

    2014-06-01

    Cardiovascular disease, the most common cause for morbidity and mortality in end-stage renal disease (ESRD), has prompted the exploration of multiple approaches to improve outcomes. Cardiovascular risk factors such as oxidative stress (OxSt) and cardiac remodelling are common in ESRD and dialysis patients. Green tea (GT) is well recognized as reducing OxSt. This 6 months study evaluated in 20 ESRD patients under chronic dialysis, the effect of GT treatment (1 g/day as commercially available capsule) on cellular and plasma OxSt and proliferation related markers using a molecular biology approach. Mononuclear cell p22(phox), Haeme Oxygenase (HO)-1 protein expression, and phosphorylated ERK1/2 status were evaluated in dialysis patients at baseline, after 3 and 6 months of GT treatment by Western blot analysis and plasma oxLDL by ELISA. Cardiac remodelling was assessed by echocardiographic left ventricular (LV) mass determination at baseline and at the end of the study. GT treatment reduced p22(phox) and pERK1/2 from baseline while HO-1 increased. At baseline, LV mass correlated with both p22(phox) and oxLDL. GT treatment decreased LV mass from baseline, which correlated with oxLDL. 9 patients had LV hypertrophy at baseline, which, at 6 months, was normalized in 5 and reduced in 3, showing a parallel decrease of p22(phox), pERK1/2, oxLDL and increase of HO-1. Treatment with GT decreased the expression of OxSt-related proteins tightly associated with cardiovascular disease and decreased LV mass. It appears highly likely that the addition of GT can provide a benefit in terms of cardiovascular protection in dialysis patients. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd and European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2005-09-01

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kawai, Nobuyuki; Miyake, Keisuke; Okada, Masaki; Tamiya, Takashi; Maeda, Yukito; Yamamoto, Yuka; Nishiyama, Yoshihiro; Kudomi, Nobuyuki

    2011-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Mary A.

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-12-15

    Spent coffee grounds (SCG) and charred spent coffee grounds (SCG-char) have been widely used to adsorb or to amend heavy metals that contaminate water or soil and their success is usually assessed by chemical analysis. In this work, the effects of SCG and SCG-char on metal-contaminated water and soil were evaluated using chemical and biological assessments; a phytotoxicity test using bok choy (Brassica campestris L. ssp. chinensis Jusl.) was conducted for the biological assessment. When SCG and SCG-char were applied to acid mine drainage, the heavy metal concentrations were decreased and the pH was increased. However, for SCG, the phytotoxicity increased because a massive amount of dissolved organic carbon was released from SCG. In contrast, SCG-char did not exhibit this phenomenon because any easily released organic matter was removed during pyrolysis. While the bioavailable heavy metal content decreased in soils treated with SCG or SCG-char, the phytotoxicity only rose after SCG treatment. According to our statistical methodology, bioavailable Pb, Cu and As, as well as the electrical conductivity representing an increase in organic content, affected the phytotoxicity of soil. Therefore, applying SCG during environment remediation requires careful biological assessments and evaluations of the efficiency of this remediation technology. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Sol-gel TiO2 colloidal suspensions and nanostructured thin films: structural and biological assessments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quartapelle Procopio, Elsa; Colombo, Valentina; Santo, Nadia; Sironi, Angelo; Lenardi, Cristina; Maggioni, Daniela

    2018-02-01

    The role of substrate topography in phenotype expression of in vitro cultured cells has been widely assessed. However, the production of the nanostructured interface via the deposition of sol-gel synthesized nanoparticles (NPs) has not yet been fully exploited. This is also evidenced by the limited number of studies correlating the morphological, structural and chemical properties of the grown thin films with those of the sol-gel ‘brick’ within the framework of the bottom-up approach. Our work intends to go beyond this drawback presenting an accurate investigation of sol-gel TiO2 NPs shaped as spheres and rods. They have been fully characterized by complementary analytical techniques both suspended in apolar solvents, by dynamic light scattering (DLS) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and after deposition on substrates (solid state configuration) by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and powder x-ray diffraction (PXRD). In the case of suspended anisotropic rods, the experimental DLS data, analyzed by the Tirado-Garcia de la Torre model, present the following ranges of dimensions: 4-5 nm diameter (∅) and 11-15 nm length (L). These results are in good agreement with that obtained by the two solid state techniques, namely 3.8(9) nm ∅ and 13.8(2.5) nm L from TEM and 5.6(1) ∅ and 13.3(1) nm L from PXRD data. To prove the suitability of the supported sol-gel NPs for biological issues, spheres and rods have been separately deposited on coverslips. The cell response has been ascertained by evaluating the adhesion of the epithelial cell line Madin-Darby canine kidney. The cellular analysis showed that titania films promote cell adhesion as well clustering organization, which is a distinguishing feature of this type of cell line. Thus, the use of nanostructured substrates via sol-gel could be considered a good candidate for cell culture with the further advantages of likely scalability and interfaceability with many different materials usable as supports.

  15. Sol-gel TiO2 colloidal suspensions and nanostructured thin films: structural and biological assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Procopio, Elsa Quartapelle; Colombo, Valentina; Santo, Nadia; Sironi, Angelo; Lenardi, Cristina; Maggioni, Daniela

    2018-02-02

    The role of substrate topography in phenotype expression of in vitro cultured cells has been widely assessed. However, the production of the nanostructured interface via the deposition of sol-gel synthesized nanoparticles (NPs) has not yet been fully exploited. This is also evidenced by the limited number of studies correlating the morphological, structural and chemical properties of the grown thin films with those of the sol-gel 'brick' within the framework of the bottom-up approach. Our work intends to go beyond this drawback presenting an accurate investigation of sol-gel TiO 2 NPs shaped as spheres and rods. They have been fully characterized by complementary analytical techniques both suspended in apolar solvents, by dynamic light scattering (DLS) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and after deposition on substrates (solid state configuration) by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and powder x-ray diffraction (PXRD). In the case of suspended anisotropic rods, the experimental DLS data, analyzed by the Tirado-Garcia de la Torre model, present the following ranges of dimensions: 4-5 nm diameter (∅) and 11-15 nm length (L). These results are in good agreement with that obtained by the two solid state techniques, namely 3.8(9) nm ∅ and 13.8(2.5) nm L from TEM and 5.6(1) ∅ and 13.3(1) nm L from PXRD data. To prove the suitability of the supported sol-gel NPs for biological issues, spheres and rods have been separately deposited on coverslips. The cell response has been ascertained by evaluating the adhesion of the epithelial cell line Madin-Darby canine kidney. The cellular analysis showed that titania films promote cell adhesion as well clustering organization, which is a distinguishing feature of this type of cell line. Thus, the use of nanostructured substrates via sol-gel could be considered a good candidate for cell culture with the further advantages of likely scalability and interfaceability with many different materials usable as supports.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Correard F

    2014-11-01

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

  17. Biological assessment of neonicotinoids imidacloprid and its major metabolites for potentially human health using globular proteins as a model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Fei; Peng, Wei

    2015-06-01

    The assessment of biological activities of imidacloprid and its two major metabolites, namely 6-chloronicotinic acid and 2-imidazolidone for nontarget organism, by employing essentially functional biomacromolecules, albumin and hemoglobin as a potentially model with the use of circular dichroism (CD), fluorescence, extrinsic 8-anilino-1-naphthalenesulfonic acid (ANS) fluorescence as well as molecular modeling is the theme of this work. By dint of CD spectra and synchronous fluorescence, it was clear that the orderly weak interactions between amino acid residues within globular proteins were disturbed by imidacloprid, and this event led to marginally alterations or self-regulations of protein conformation so as to lodge imidacloprid more tightly. Both steady state and time-resolved fluorescence suggested that the fluorescence of Trp residues in proteins was quenched after the presence of imidacloprid, corresponding to noncovalent protein-imidacloprid complexes formation and, the reaction belongs to moderate association (K=1.888/1.614×10(4)M(-1) for albumin/hemoglobin-imidacloprid, respectively), hydrogen bonds and π stacking performed a vital role in stabilizing the complexes, as derived from thermodynamic analysis and molecular modeling. With the aid of hydrophobic ANS experiments, subdomain IIA and α1β2 interface of albumin and hemoglobin, respectively, were found to be preserved high-affinity for imidacloprid. These results ties in with the subsequently molecular modeling laying imidacloprid in the Sudlow's site I and close to Trp-213 residue on albumin, while settling down B/Trp-37 residue nearby in hemoglobin, and these conclusions further confirmed by site-directed mutagenesis and molecular dynamics simulation. But, at the same time, several crucial noncovalent bonds came from other amino acid residues, e.g. Arg-194 and Arg-198 (albumin) and B/Arg-40, B/Asp-99 and B/Asn-102 (hemoglobin) cannot be ignored completely. Based on the comparative studies of

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

    The increasing emphasis on the assessment and monitoring of marine ecosystems has revealed the need to use appropriate biological indicators for these areas. Enzyme activities and histopathology are increasingly being used as indicators of environmental stress since they provide a definite biological end-point of pollutant exposure. As part of an ecotoxicological assessment of Mersin Bay, EROD enzyme activity and histopathological response in selected organs and tissues of two species of fish, Mullus barbatus (red mullet) and Liza ramada (thinlip grey mullet), captured from area were examined. Pollutant (Organochlorines (OC), alkylphenols (APs) and BPA) levels and biomarker responses in tissue samples were evaluated together for their potential to alter the metabolism and cellular aspects in liver and gonad. Elevated induction of EROD activity and histopathological alterations in contaminated samples from Mersin Bay was observed compared to reference site indicating the exposure to potential pollutants. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. “Biotecnological War” - A Conceptual And Perceptual Assessment Tool For Teaching Biotechnology And Protein Chemistry For Undergraduate Students In Biological Sciences.

    OpenAIRE

    C. R. C. Cruz et al.

    2017-01-01

    "Biotecnological War" board game, a conceptual and perceptual assessment tool for biotechnology and protein chemistry teaching for undergraduate students in biological sciences and related areas. It is a proposal initially conceived as an alternative complementary tool for biochemistry teaching of proteins and peptides, challenging students, aiming to review concepts transmitted in classroom, stimulating diverse student’s abilities, such as their creativity, competitiveness and resource manag...

  20. An Assessment of Weight-Length Relationships for Muskellunge,Northern Pike, and Chain Pickerel In Carlander's Handbook of Freshwater Fishery Biology

    OpenAIRE

    Daviscourt, Joshua; Huertas, Joshua; Courtney, Michael

    2011-01-01

    Carlander's Handbook of Freshwater Fishery Biology (1969) contains life history data from many species of freshwater fish found in North America. It has been cited over 1200 times and used to produce standard-weight curves for some species. Recent work (Cole-Fletcher et al. 2011) suggests Carlander (1969) contains numerous errors in listed weight-length equations. This paper assesses the weight-length relationships listed in Carlander for muskellunge, northern pike, and chain pickerel by comp...

  1. [The use of biological age on mental work capacity model in accelerated aging assessment of professional lorry-drivers].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bashkireva, A S

    2012-01-01

    The studies of biological age, aging rate, mental work capacity in professional drivers were conducted. The examination revealed peculiarities of system organization of functions determining the mental work capacity levels. Dynamics of the aging process of professional driver's organism in relation with calendar age and driving experience were shown using the biological age model. The results point at the premature decrease of the mental work capacity in professional drivers. It was proved, that premature age-related changes of physiologic and psychophysiologic indices in drivers are just "risk indicators", while long driving experience is a real risk factor, accelerating the aging process. The "risk group" with manifestations of accelerating aging was observed in 40-49-year old drivers with 15-19 years of professional experience. The expediency of using the following methods for the age rate estimation according to biologic age indices and necessity of prophylactic measures for premature and accelerated aging prevention among working population was demonstrated.

  2. An ecologically-based method for selecting ecological indicators for assessing risks to biological diversity from genetically-engineered plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andow, D. A.; Lövei, Gabor L; Arpaia, Salvatore

    2013-01-01

    into ecological functional groups and selecting those that deliver the identified environmental values. (3) All of the species or ecosystem processes related to the selected functional groups are identified and (4) multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) is used to rank the indicator endpoint entities, which may...... adverse effects to biological diversity. The approach starts by (1) identifying the local environmental values so the ERA addresses specific concerns associated with local biological diversity. The model simplifies the indicator endpoint selection problem by (2) classifying biological diversity...... be species or ecological processes. MCDA focuses on those species and processes that are critical for the identified ecological functions and are likely to be highly exposed to the GE organism. The highest ranked indicator entities are selected for the next step. (5) Relevant risk hypotheses are identified...

  3. The biological assessment of flora and fauna as standards for changes in the near-shore ocean environment: a study of Barbers Point Harbor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hokama, Y; Wachi, K M; Shiraki, A; Goo, C; Ebesu, J S

    2001-02-01

    The biological assessments of the flora and fauna in the near-shore ocean environment, specifically Barbers Point Harbor (BPH), demonstrate the usefulness of these biological analyses for evaluation of the changes occurring following man-made excavation for expansion of the harbor. The study included identification and enumeration of macroalgae and dinoflagellates and analyses of herbivores and carnivores in four areas within the perimeter of the harbor and the north and south entrances into the harbor. Numbers of macroalgae varied between 1994 and 1999 surveys, with significant decrease in numbers in stations C, D and E. Stations A and B were similar between 1994 and 1999 with a slight increase in 1999. The significant differences were shown with the appearance of Gambierdiscus toxicus (G toxicus) in 1999 among the algae in stations A and B. Assessment of herbivores and carnivores with the immunological membrane immunobead assay using monoclonal antibody to ciguatoxin and related polyethers demonstrated an increase in fish toxicity among the herbivore from 1994-1999 (22% increase) with a decrease (22%) in non-toxic fish. This was also demonstrated in the carnivores, but to a lesser degree. It is suggested that the biological analyses of the flora and the fauna of the near-shore ocean environment are appropriate to assess the changes that occur from natural and man-made alterations.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feltham, Nicola F.; Downs, Colleen T.

    2002-02-01

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

  5. Integrative Assessment of Evolutionary Theory Acceptance and Knowledge Levels of Biology Undergraduate Students from a Brazilian University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tavares, Gustavo Medina; Bobrowski, Vera Lucia

    2018-01-01

    The integrative role that Evolutionary theory plays within Biology is recognised by most scientific authors, as well as in governmental education policies, including Brazilian policies. However, teaching and learning evolution seems problematic in many countries, and Brazil is among those. Many factors may affect teachers' and students'…

  6. Assessment of radiation safety awareness and attitude toward biological effect of radiation for employees in nuclear workplace

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Youngchuay, U.; Jetawattana, S.; Toeypho, V.; Eso, J.

    2016-01-01

    This study demonstrated a potential relevance of data pertaining to the interaction of awareness in radiation biology and their attitude towards radiation hazards. The obtained information is useful in ascertaining the effectiveness of the ongoing radiation safety program and will be further used to determine the relationships between the radiation effective dose and cytogenetic approach in these groups of workers. (author)

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-01-01

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

  8. ASSESSMENT OF THE RESPONSE OF PATIENTS WITH CROHN'S DISEASE TO BIOLOGICAL THERAPY USING NEW NON-INVASIVE MARKERS: lactoferrin and calprotectin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Islaine Martins NOGUEIRA

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Context The use of fecal markers to monitor Crohn's disease is crucial for assessing the response to treatment. Objective To assess the inflammatory activity of Crohn's disease by comparing fecal markers (calprotectin and lactoferrin, colonoscopy combined with biopsy, and the Crohn's disease activity index (CDAI, as well as serum markers, before treatment with infliximab, after the end of induction, and after the end of maintenance. Methods Seventeen patients were included who had been previously diagnosed with Crohn's disease and were using conventional treatment but required the introduction of biological therapy with infliximab. Each patient underwent a colonoscopy with biopsy, serum, and fecal (calprotectin and lactoferrin tests to assess inflammatory activity, and CDAI assessments before treatment with infliximab, after induction (week 8, and after maintenance (week 32. Results The calprotectin levels exhibited significant reductions (P = 0.04 between the assessment before treatment with infliximab and the end of induction, which did not occur after the end of the maintenance phase. Lactoferrin remained positive throughout the three phases of the study. Regarding the histological assessment, a significant difference was found only between the assessment before treatment and after the end of maintenance (P = 0.036, and 60% of the patients exhibited histological improvements after the completion of the follow-up period. The CDAI exhibited a significant difference between the assessment before treatment with infliximab and after induction, as well as before treatment and after maintenance (P<0.01. Conclusion Calprotectin and lactoferrin are not useful for monitoring inflammatory activity in Crohn's disease patients who are subjected to biological therapy.

  9. Effect of biological and chemical oxidation on the removal of estrogenic compounds (NP and BPA) from wastewater: an integrated assessment procedure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertanza, Giorgio; Pedrazzani, Roberta; Dal Grande, Mario; Papa, Matteo; Zambarda, Valerio; Montani, Claudia; Steimberg, Nathalie; Mazzoleni, Giovanna; Di Lorenzo, Diego

    2011-04-01

    A major source of the wide presence of EDCs (Endocrine Disrupting Compounds) in water bodies is represented by direct/indirect discharge of sewage. Recent scientific literature reports data about their trace concentration in water, sediments and aquatic organisms, as well as removal efficiencies of different wastewater treatment schemes. Despite the availability of a huge amount of data, some doubts still persist due to the difficulty in evaluating synergistic effects of trace pollutants in complex matrices. In this paper, an integrated assessment procedure was used, based on chemical and biological analyses, in order to compare the performance of two full scale biological wastewater treatment plants (either equipped with conventional settling tanks or with an ultrafiltration membrane unit) and tertiary ozonation (pilot scale). Nonylphenol and bisphenol A were chosen as model EDCs, together with the parent compounds mono- and di-ethoxylated nonylphenol (quantified by means of GC-MS). Water estrogenic activity was evaluated by applying the human breast cancer MCF-7 based reporter gene assay. Process parameters (e.g., sludge age, temperature) and conventional pollutants (e.g., COD, suspended solids) were also measured during monitoring campaigns. Conventional activated sludge achieved satisfactory removal of both analytes and estrogenicity. A further reduction of biological activity was exerted by MBR (Membrane Biological Reactor) as well as ozonation; the latter contributed also to decrease EDC concentrations. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Assessment of uranium and selenium speciation in human and bacterial biological models to probe changes in their structural environment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Avoscan, L.; Milgram, S.; Untereiner, G.; Collins, R.; Khodja, H.; Carriere, M.; Gouget, B. [Lab. Pierre Sue, CEA-CNRS UMR 9956, CEA/Saclay, Gif-sur-Yvette (France); Coves, J. [Inst. de Biologie Structurale - J.-P. Ebel, Lab. des Proteines Membranaires, Grenoble (France); Hazemann, J.L. [Lab. de Geophysique Interne et Tectonopbysique, UMR CNRS/Univ. Joseph Fourier, Saint-Martin-D' Heres (France)

    2009-07-01

    This study illustrates the potential of physicochemical techniques to speciate uranium (U) and selenium (Se) in biological samples. Speciation, defined he0re as the study of structural environment, of both toxic elements, was characterized at several levels in biological media and directly in human cells or bacteria once the metal(loid)s were internalized. External speciation that is extracellular speciation in culture media was predicted by thermodynamic equilibrium computer modelling using the JChess software and validated by spectroscopic measurements (XANES and EXAFS). Internal speciation that is intracellular speciation in eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells was studied in vitro with a soil bacterium Cupriavidus metallidurans CH34 and ROS 17/2.8 osteoblasts, human cells responsible for bone formation. XANES, EXAFS, HPLC-ICP-MS and SDS-PAGE coupled to particle induced X-ray emission (PIXE) permitted the identification and quantification of complexes formed with organic or inorganic molecules and/or larger proteins. (orig.)

  11. Assessment of uranium and selenium speciation in human and bacterial biological models to probe changes in their structural environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Avoscan, L.; Milgram, S.; Untereiner, G.; Collins, R.; Khodja, H.; Carriere, M.; Gouget, B.; Coves, J.; Hazemann, J.L.

    2009-01-01

    This study illustrates the potential of physicochemical techniques to speciate uranium (U) and selenium (Se) in biological samples. Speciation, defined he0re as the study of structural environment, of both toxic elements, was characterized at several levels in biological media and directly in human cells or bacteria once the metal(loid)s were internalized. External speciation that is extracellular speciation in culture media was predicted by thermodynamic equilibrium computer modelling using the JChess software and validated by spectroscopic measurements (XANES and EXAFS). Internal speciation that is intracellular speciation in eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells was studied in vitro with a soil bacterium Cupriavidus metallidurans CH34 and ROS 17/2.8 osteoblasts, human cells responsible for bone formation. XANES, EXAFS, HPLC-ICP-MS and SDS-PAGE coupled to particle induced X-ray emission (PIXE) permitted the identification and quantification of complexes formed with organic or inorganic molecules and/or larger proteins. (orig.)

  12. Meta-cognition about biological sex and gender-stereotypic physical appearance: consequences for the assessment of leadership competence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sczesny, Sabine; Kühnen, Ulrich

    2004-01-01

    Previous findings are inconsistent with regard to whether men are judged as being more or less competent leaders than women. However, masculine-relative to feminine-looking persons seem to be judged consistently as more competent leaders. Can this different impact of biological sex and physical appearance be due to the disparate availability of meta-cognitive knowledge about both sources? The results of Study 1 indicated that individuals possess meta-cognitive knowledge about a possible biasing influence of persons' biological sex, but not for their physical appearance. In Study 2, participants judged the leadership competence of a male versus female stimulus person with either masculine or feminine physical appearance. In addition, the available cognitive capacity was manipulated. When high capacity was available, participants corrected for the influence of stimulus persons' sex, but they fell prey to this influence under cognitive load. However, the effect of physical appearance was not moderated by cognitive capacity.

  13. Assessing the effect of selection with deltamethrin on biological parameters and detoxifying enzymes in Aedes aegypti (L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarez-Gonzalez, Leslie C; Briceño, Arelis; Ponce-Garcia, Gustavo; Villanueva-Segura, O Karina; Davila-Barboza, Jesus A; Lopez-Monroy, Beatriz; Gutierrez-Rodriguez, Selene M; Contreras-Perera, Yamili; Rodriguez-Sanchez, Iram P; Flores, Adriana E

    2017-11-01

    Resistance to insecticides through one or several mechanisms has a cost for an insect in various parameters of its biological cycle. The present study evaluated the effect of deltamethrin on detoxifying enzymes and biological parameters in a population of Aedes aegypti selected for 15 generations. The enzyme activities of alpha- and beta-esterases, mixed-function oxidases and glutathione-S-transferases were determined during selection, along with biological parameters. Overexpression of mixed-function oxidases as a mechanism of metabolic resistance to deltamethrin was found. There were decreases in percentages of eggs hatching, pupation and age-specific survival and in total survival at the end of the selection (F 16 ). Although age-specific fecundity was not affected by selection with deltamethrin, total fertility, together with lower survival, significantly affected gross reproduction rate, gradually decreasing due to deltamethrin selection. Similarly, net reproductive rate and intrinsic growth rate were affected by selection. Alterations in life parameters could be due to the accumulation of noxious effects or deleterious genes related to detoxifying enzymes, specifically those coding for mixed-function oxidases, along with the presence of recessive alleles of the V1016I and F1534C mutations, associating deltamethrin resistance with fitness cost in Ae. aegypti. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry.

  14. Non-enzymatic lipid oxidation products in biological systems: assessment of the metabolites from polyunsaturated fatty acids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vigor, Claire; Bertrand-Michel, Justine; Pinot, Edith; Oger, Camille; Vercauteren, Joseph; Le Faouder, Pauline; Galano, Jean-Marie; Lee, Jetty Chung-Yung; Durand, Thierry

    2014-08-01

    Metabolites of non-enzymatic lipid peroxidation of polyunsaturated fatty acids notably omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids have become important biomarkers of lipid products. Especially the arachidonic acid-derived F2-isoprostanes are the classic in vivo biomarker for oxidative stress in biological systems. In recent years other isoprostanes from eicosapentaenoic, docosahexaenoic, adrenic and α-linolenic acids have been evaluated, namely F3-isoprostanes, F4-neuroprostanes, F2-dihomo-isoprostanes and F1-phytoprostanes, respectively. These have been gaining interest as complementary specific biomarkers in human diseases. Refined extraction methods, robust analysis and elucidation of chemical structures have improved the sensitivity of detection in biological tissues and fluids. Previously the main reliable instrumentation for measurement was gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS), but now the use of liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) and immunological techniques is gaining much attention. In this review, the types of prostanoids generated from non-enzymatic lipid peroxidation of some important omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids and biological samples that have been determined by GC-MS and LC-MS/MS are discussed. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  15. Experimental strategies to assess the biological ramifications of multiple drivers of global ocean change-A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyd, Philip W; Collins, Sinead; Dupont, Sam; Fabricius, Katharina; Gattuso, Jean-Pierre; Havenhand, Jonathan; Hutchins, David A; Riebesell, Ulf; Rintoul, Max S; Vichi, Marcello; Biswas, Haimanti; Ciotti, Aurea; Gao, Kunshan; Gehlen, Marion; Hurd, Catriona L; Kurihara, Haruko; McGraw, Christina M; Navarro, Jorge M; Nilsson, Göran E; Passow, Uta; Pörtner, Hans-Otto

    2018-06-01

    Marine life is controlled by multiple physical and chemical drivers and by diverse ecological processes. Many of these oceanic properties are being altered by climate change and other anthropogenic pressures. Hence, identifying the influences of multifaceted ocean change, from local to global scales, is a complex task. To guide policy-making and make projections of the future of the marine biosphere, it is essential to understand biological responses at physiological, evolutionary and ecological levels. Here, we contrast and compare different approaches to multiple driver experiments that aim to elucidate biological responses to a complex matrix of ocean global change. We present the benefits and the challenges of each approach with a focus on marine research, and guidelines to navigate through these different categories to help identify strategies that might best address research questions in fundamental physiology, experimental evolutionary biology and community ecology. Our review reveals that the field of multiple driver research is being pulled in complementary directions: the need for reductionist approaches to obtain process-oriented, mechanistic understanding and a requirement to quantify responses to projected future scenarios of ocean change. We conclude the review with recommendations on how best to align different experimental approaches to contribute fundamental information needed for science-based policy formulation. © 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Uusitalo

    2016-09-01

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

  17. Assessing the effectiveness of synthetic and biologic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs in psoriatic arthritis – a systematic review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kingsley GH

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Gabrielle H Kingsley, David L Scott Rheumatology Unit, Kings College London, London, UK Background: Psoriatic arthritis is an inflammatory arthritis the primary manifestations of which are locomotor and skin disease. Although a number of guidelines have been published citing strategies for reducing disease progression, the evidence base for disease-modifying agents is unclear. This forms the focus of this systematic review. Methods: The systematic review was undertaken according to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses 2009 checklist. We selected randomized controlled trials (RCTs that looked at the impact of interventions with disease-modifying agents, either synthetic drugs or biologics on musculoskeletal outcomes, notably American College of Rheumatology 20 percent responders. Results were analyzed using Review Manager 5.1.6 (Cochrane Collaboration, Oxford, UK. Whilst our primary focus was on published trials, we also looked at new trials presented in abstract form in 2013–2014 that were not yet published to avoid omitting important and up-to-date information on developing treatments. Results: Our in-depth analysis included 28 trials overall enrolling 5,177 patients published between the 1980s and now as well as limited analysis of some studies in abstract form as described earlier. The most frequently available locomotor outcome measure was the American College of Rheumatology 20 percent responders. The risk ratio for achieving an American College of Rheumatology 20 percent responders response was positive in favor of treatment (risk ratio 2.30; 95% confidence interval 1.78–2.96; however, there was evidence of considerable heterogeneity between trials. Overall randomized controlled trials of established synthetic disease-modifying agents were largely negative (methotrexate, ciclosporin and sulfasalazine though leflunomide showed a small positive effect. A new synthetic agent, apremilast, did show a

  18. Context matters: volunteer bias, small sample size, and the value of comparison groups in the assessment of research-based undergraduate introductory biology lab courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownell, Sara E; Kloser, Matthew J; Fukami, Tadashi; Shavelson, Richard J

    2013-01-01

    The shift from cookbook to authentic research-based lab courses in undergraduate biology necessitates the need for evaluation and assessment of these novel courses. Although the biology education community has made progress in this area, it is important that we interpret the effectiveness of these courses with caution and remain mindful of inherent limitations to our study designs that may impact internal and external validity. The specific context of a research study can have a dramatic impact on the conclusions. We present a case study of our own three-year investigation of the impact of a research-based introductory lab course, highlighting how volunteer students, a lack of a comparison group, and small sample sizes can be limitations of a study design that can affect the interpretation of the effectiveness of a course.

  19. Context Matters: Volunteer Bias, Small Sample Size, and the Value of Comparison Groups in the Assessment of Research-Based Undergraduate Introductory Biology Lab Courses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara E. Brownell

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The shift from cookbook to authentic research-based lab courses in undergraduate biology necessitates the need for evaluation and assessment of these novel courses. Although the biology education community has made progress in this area, it is important that we interpret the effectiveness of these courses with caution and remain mindful of inherent limitations to our study designs that may impact internal and external validity. The specific context of a research study can have a dramatic impact on the conclusions. We present a case study of our own three-year investigation of the impact of a research-based introductory lab course, highlighting how volunteer students, a lack of a comparison group, and small sample sizes can be limitations of a study design that can affect the interpretation of the effectiveness of a course.

  20. An Assessment of the Spatial and Temporal Variability of Biological Responses to Municipal Wastewater Effluent in Rainbow Darter (Etheostoma caeruleum) Collected along an Urban Gradient

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bragg, Leslie M.; Tetreault, Gerald R.; Bahamonde, Paulina A.; Tanna, Rajiv N.; Bennett, Charles J.; McMaster, Mark E.; Servos, Mark R.

    2016-01-01

    Municipal wastewater effluent (MWWE) and its constituents, such as chemicals of emerging concern, pose a potential threat to the sustainability of fish populations by disrupting key endocrine functions in aquatic organisms. While studies have demonstrated changes in biological markers of exposure of aquatic organisms to groups of chemicals of emerging concern, the variability of these markers over time has not been sufficiently described in wild fish species. The aim of this study was to assess the spatial and temporal variability of biological markers in response to MWWE exposure and to test the consistency of these responses between seasons and among years. Rainbow darter (Etheostoma caeruleum) were collected in spring and fall seasons over a 5-year period in the Grand River, Ontario, Canada. In addition to surface water chemistry (nutrients and selected pharmaceuticals), measures were taken across levels of biological organization in rainbow darter. The measurements of hormone production, gonad development, and intersex severity were temporally consistent and suggested impaired reproduction in male fish collected downstream of MWWE outfalls. In contrast, ovarian development and hormone production in females appeared to be influenced more by urbanization than MWWE. Measures of gene expression and somatic indices were highly variable between sites and years, respectively, and were inconclusive in terms of the impacts of MWWE overall. Robust biomonitoring programs must consider these factors in both the design and interpretation of results, especially when spatial and temporal sampling of biological endpoints is limited. Assessing the effects of contaminants and other stressors on fish in watersheds would be greatly enhanced by an approach that considers natural variability in the endpoints being measured. PMID:27776151

  1. An Assessment of the Spatial and Temporal Variability of Biological Responses to Municipal Wastewater Effluent in Rainbow Darter (Etheostoma caeruleum Collected along an Urban Gradient.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meghan L M Fuzzen

    Full Text Available Municipal wastewater effluent (MWWE and its constituents, such as chemicals of emerging concern, pose a potential threat to the sustainability of fish populations by disrupting key endocrine functions in aquatic organisms. While studies have demonstrated changes in biological markers of exposure of aquatic organisms to groups of chemicals of emerging concern, the variability of these markers over time has not been sufficiently described in wild fish species. The aim of this study was to assess the spatial and temporal variability of biological markers in response to MWWE exposure and to test the consistency of these responses between seasons and among years. Rainbow darter (Etheostoma caeruleum were collected in spring and fall seasons over a 5-year period in the Grand River, Ontario, Canada. In addition to surface water chemistry (nutrients and selected pharmaceuticals, measures were taken across levels of biological organization in rainbow darter. The measurements of hormone production, gonad development, and intersex severity were temporally consistent and suggested impaired reproduction in male fish collected downstream of MWWE outfalls. In contrast, ovarian development and hormone production in females appeared to be influenced more by urbanization than MWWE. Measures of gene expression and somatic indices were highly variable between sites and years, respectively, and were inconclusive in terms of the impacts of MWWE overall. Robust biomonitoring programs must consider these factors in both the design and interpretation of results, especially when spatial and temporal sampling of biological endpoints is limited. Assessing the effects of contaminants and other stressors on fish in watersheds would be greatly enhanced by an approach that considers natural variability in the endpoints being measured.

  2. BIOLOGICAL RESPONSES OF THE SEA URCHIN, ARBACIA PUNTULATA, TO LEAD CONTAMINATION FOR AN ESTUARINE ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    Science.gov (United States)

    An estuarine ecological risk assessment for the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard (PNS) Kittery, ME, was conducted utilizing the U.S. EPA's Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment (ERA). As part of the analysis phase of the ERA, laboratory studies were conducted to develop quantitative ...

  3. A diatom-based biological condition gradient (BCG) approach for assessing impairment and developing nutrient criteria for streams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hausmann, Sonja; Charles, Donald F; Gerritsen, Jeroen; Belton, Thomas J

    2016-08-15

    Over-enrichment leading to excess algal growth is a major problem in rivers and streams. Regulations to protect streams typically incorporate nutrient criteria, concentrations of phosphorus and nitrogen that should not be exceeded in order to protect biological communities. A major challenge has been to develop an approach for both categorizing streams based on their biological conditions and determining scientifically defensible nutrient criteria to protect the biotic integrity of streams in those categories. To address this challenge, we applied the Biological Condition Gradient (BCG) approach to stream diatom assemblages to develop a system for categorizing sites by level of impairment, and then examined the related nutrient concentrations to identify potential nutrient criteria. The six levels of the BCG represent a range of ecological conditions from natural (1) to highly disturbed (6). A group of diatom experts developed a set of rules and a model to assign sites to these levels based on their diatom assemblages. To identify potential numeric nutrient criteria, we explored the relation of assigned BCG levels to nutrient concentrations, other anthropogenic stressors, and possible confounding variables using data for stream sites in New Jersey (n=42) and in surrounding Mid-Atlantic states, USA (n=1443). In both data sets, BCG levels correlated most strongly with total phosphorus and the percentage of forest in the watershed, but were independent of pH. We applied Threshold Indicator Taxa Analysis (TITAN) to determine change-points in the diatom assemblages along the BCG gradient. In both data sets, statistically significant diatom changes occurred between BCG levels 3 and 4. Sites with BCG levels 1 to 3 were dominated by species that grow attached to surfaces, while sites with BCG scores of 4 and above were characterized by motile diatoms. The diatom change-point corresponded with a total phosphorus concentration of about 50μg/L. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B

  4. A New Method for Post-introduction Risk Assessment of Biological Invasions Among Introduced Shrubs in Developing Countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seburanga, J L; Bizuru, E; Mwavu, E N; Kampungu, K G; Gatesire, T; Kaplin, B A

    2016-03-01

    Risk-assessment methods are useful in collecting data that can help decision making to prevent the introduction of new species that have the potential of invading as well as in management of established taxa. Not only the complexity and unaffordability of available pre-introduction risk-assessment models make them rarely or inconsistently applied in the least-developed countries, but also there is lack of tools to assess the status of already introduced plant species. In this study, an affordable and rapid method of assessment of invasiveness among introduced plant species was developed and tested in Rwanda. This method defines three invasion stages (potential, effective, and suppressive invaders) and four levels of risk assessment: post-introduction assessment of species inherent invasive potential (Level 1), post-establishment assessment of species capacity of regeneration (Level 2), post-naturalization assessment of species range of occurrence and ability for long-distance dispersal (Level 3), and post-naturalization assessment of species ability to outcompete other plants in the community and transform the landscape (Level 4). A review of invasive species in Rwanda was developed through desk review, examination of herbarium records, and vegetation surveys. This method should be applicable in other countries that lack the means for a more conventional scientific investigation or under any circumstance where a quick and inexpensive assessment is needed. The method could be useful to environmental managers for timely intervention with strategies specific to different stages of invasion (post-introduction, post-establishment, or post-naturalization) and allocate resources accordingly.

  5. Biological Agents

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... E-Tools Safety and Health Topics / Biological Agents Biological Agents This page requires that javascript be enabled ... 202) 693-2300 if additional assistance is required. Biological Agents Menu Overview In Focus: Ebola Frederick A. ...

  6. Active biomonitoring in freshwater environments: early warning signals from biomarkers in assessing biological effects of diffuse sources of pollutants

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Wepener, V

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available in non-fat dried milk contain- ing 0.02% sodium azide then incubated in HSP 70 primary antibody for 20 h. The membrane was washed three times in phosphate buffer saline and once in Tris buffer saline for 10 min each then incubated in non-fat azide free... biomarker response assessment of the system. A concomitant laboratory- based WET assessment of the raw water was conducted to assess the toxicity of the water at the selected sam- pling sites using standard algal, invertebrate and fish bioassays. 2. Material...

  7. Biological assessment of marine resources for the Republic of the Maldives, Indian Ocean, August, 2001 (NODC Accession 0000670)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — In August 2001, biologists from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service were asked to conduct an assessment of the national...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sriram, Jayanthi Sanjeevi

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

  9. Assessment of radiation damage - the need for a multi-parametric and integrative approach with the help of both clinical and biological dosimetry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meineke, Viktor

    2008-01-01

    Full text: Accidental exposure to ionising radiation leads to a damage on different levels of the biological organization of the organism. Depending on exposure conditions, such as nature of radiation, time and affected organs and organ systems, the clinical endpoint of radiation damage and the resulting acute and chronic radiation syndromes may vary to a great extent. Exposure situations range from pure localised radiation scenarios and partial body exposures up to whole body exposures. Therefore clinical pictures vary from localized radiation injuries up to the extreme situation of a radiation-induced multi-organ involvement and failure requiring immediate, intensive and interdisciplinary medical treatment. These total different and complex clinical situations not only show up most different clinical diagnostic and therapeutic aspects but necessarily due to different levels of the underlying biological damage, biological indicators of effects may vary to a wide extent. This fact means that an exact assessment of the extent of radiation damage within individual patients can only be performed when taking into consideration both clinical signs and symptoms as well as different biological indicators. Among the clinical indicators, routine laboratory parameters such as blood counts and the documentation of clinical signs and symptoms (such as the METREPOL system) are the key parameters, whereas the dicentric assay, the gold standard for biological dosimetry, but also methods under development such as the gamma-H2Ax focus assay or the estimation of variations of gene expression have to be taken into account. Each method provides best results in different situations, or in other words, there are methods that work better in a specific exposure condition or at a given time of examination (e.g. time after exposure) than others. Some methods show up results immediately, others require days to weeks until results are available for clinical decision making. Therefore to

  10. Use of dispersion modelling for Environmental Impact Assessment of biological air pollution from composting: Progress, problems and prospects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douglas, P; Hayes, E T; Williams, W B; Tyrrel, S F; Kinnersley, R P; Walsh, K; O'Driscoll, M; Longhurst, P J; Pollard, S J T; Drew, G H

    2017-12-01

    With the increase in composting asa sustainable waste management option, biological air pollution (bioaerosols) from composting facilities have become a cause of increasing concern due to their potential health impacts. Estimating community exposure to bioaerosols is problematic due to limitations in current monitoring methods. Atmospheric dispersion modelling can be used to estimate exposure concentrations, however several issues arise from the lack of appropriate bioaerosol data to use as inputs into models, and the complexity of the emission sources at composting facilities. This paper analyses current progress in using dispersion models for bioaerosols, examines the remaining problems and provides recommendations for future prospects in this area. A key finding is the urgent need for guidance for model users to ensure consistent bioaerosol modelling practices. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  11. Can an attribution assessment be made for Yellow Rain? Systematic reanalysis in a chemical-and-biological-weapons use investigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katz, Rebecca; Singer, Burton

    2007-03-01

    In intelligence investigations, such as those into reports of chemical- or biological-weapons (CBW) use, evidence may be difficult to assemble and, once assembled, to weigh. We propose a methodology for such investigations and then apply it to a large body of recently declassified evidence to determine the extent to which an attribution can now be made in the Yellow Rain case. Our analysis strongly supports the hypothesis that CBW were used in Southeast Asia and Afghanistan in the late 1970s and early 1980s, although a definitive judgment cannot be made. The proposed methodology, while resource-intensive, allows evidence to be assembled and analyzed in a transparent manner so that assumptions and rationale for decisions can be challenged by external critics. We conclude with a discussion of future research directions, emphasizing the use of evolving information-extraction (IE) technologies, a sub-field of artificial intelligence (AI).

  12. Integrating chemical and biological status assessment: Assembling lines of evidence for the evaluation of river ecosystem risk

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Munoz Gracia, Isabel; Sabater, Sergi

    2014-01-01

    This paper describes various approaches to evaluating ecological risk in rivers affected by multiple chemical stressors, with emphasis on biofilm and invertebrate community responses. Metrics should be considered as different lines of evidence that, when weighted, form an advanced weight of evidence approach to establishing the environmental risk on a basin scale. Combination of field surveys to obtain observational data of communities, in situ experiments, toxicological sediment tests and a good chemical description of the medium (water and sediment) helps give an integrative view of the chemical and biological state of a river ecosystem. The greater and more distinct the variables used, the greater is our ability to identify the effects of major stressors impairing communities. Weight of evidence is an integrative methodology for tackling the challenge of determining causal relations and applying this knowledge in the decision-making processes of river management.

  13. Alpha-particle autoradiography in CR-39: a technique for quantitative assessment of alpha-emitters in biological tissue

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fews, A.P.; Henshaw, D.L.

    1983-01-01

    The techniques for α-particle autoradiography based on the plastic nuclear track detector CR-39, previously reported, have been developed considerably. The techniques are applied to α-autoradiography of human lung tissue in particular but are applicable to any biological tissue. The most important developments are: (i) Improvements in the manufacture and pre-etching of the plastic. (ii) High resolution α-particle spectroscopy in CR-39 plastic based on the analysis of the structure of the etched track. (iii) Calculation of the effective thickness of tissue sampled by the plastic. (iv) A deconvolution analysis which takes the distributions of track length and dip angle in the plastic and determines the α-particle range spectrum and distribution of tissue activity with height above the plastic surface. (v) The analysis of radon diffusion in tissue to determine the mean radon diffusion distance in tissue and plastic. (author)

  14. Plastic pollution in the Labrador Sea: An assessment using the seabird northern fulmar Fulmarus glacialis as a biological monitoring species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avery-Gomm, Stephanie; Provencher, Jennifer F; Liboiron, Max; Poon, Florence E; Smith, Paul A

    2018-02-01

    Plastic is now one among one of the most pervasive pollutants on the planet, and ocean circulation models predict that the Arctic will become another accumulation zone. As solutions to address marine plastic emerge, is essential that baselines are available to monitor progress towards targets. The northern fulmar (Fulmarus glacialis), a widely-distributed seabird species, has been used as a biological monitor for plastic pollution in the North Sea, and could be a useful monitoring species elsewhere. We quantified plastic ingested by northern fulmars from the southeastern Canadian waters of the Labrador Sea with the objective of establishing a standardized baseline for future comparisons. Over two years we sampled 70 fulmars and found that 79% had ingested plastic, with an average of 11.6 pieces or 0.151g per bird. Overall, 34% of all fulmars exceeded the Ecological Quality Objective for marine litter, having ingested >0.1g of plastic. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Integrated assessment of PAH contamination in the Czech Rivers using a combination of chemical and biological monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blahova, Jana; Divisova, Lenka; Kodes, Vit; Leontovycova, Drahomira; Mach, Samuel; Ocelka, Tomas; Svobodova, Zdenka

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) pollution of selected rivers in the Czech Republic. Integrated evaluation was carried out using combination of chemical and biological monitoring, in which we measured content of 1-hydroxypyrene (1-OHP) in chub bile and priority PAH in water samples obtained by exposing the semipermeable membrane devices at each location. The concentrations of 1-OHP in bile samples and sum of priority PAH in water sampler ranged from 6.8 ng mg protein(-1) to 106.6 ng mg protein(-1) and from 5.2 ng L(-1) to 173.9 ng L(-1), respectively. The highest levels of biliary metabolite and PAH in water were measured at the Odra River (the Bohumín site), which is located in relatively heavily industrialized and polluted region. Statistically significant positive correlation between biliary 1-OHP and sum of PAH in water was also obtained (P < 0.01, r s = 0.806).

  16. Critical assessment of the performance of electronic moisture analyzers for small amounts of environmental samples and biological reference materials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krachler, M

    2001-12-01

    Two electronic moisture analyzers were critically evaluated with regard to their suitability for determining moisture in small amounts (environmental matrices such as leaves, needles, soil, peat, sediments, and sewage sludge, as well as various biological reference materials. To this end, several homogeneous bulk materials were prepared which were subsequently employed for the development and optimization of all analytical procedures. The key features of the moisture analyzers included a halogen or ceramic heater and an integrated balance with a resolution of 0.1 mg, which is an essential prerequisite for obtaining precise results. Oven drying of the bulk materials in a conventional oven at 105 degrees C until constant mass served as reference method. A heating temperature of 65degrees C was found to provide accurate and precise results for almost all matrices investigated. To further improve the accuracy and precision, other critical parameters such as handling of sample pans, standby temperature, and measurement delay were optimized. Because of its ponderous heating behavior, the performance of the ceramic radiator was inferior to that of the halogen heater, which produced moisture results comparable to those obtained by oven drying. The developed drying procedures were successfully applied to the fast moisture analysis (1.4-6.3 min) of certified biological reference materials of similar provenance to the investigated the bulk materials. Moisture results for 200 mg aliquots ranged from 1.4 to 7.8% and good agreement was obtained between the recommended drying procedure for the reference materials and the electronic moisture analyzers with absolute uncertainties amounting to 0.1% and 0.2-0.3%, respectively.

  17. Considerations on the Assessment and Use of Cycling Performance Metrics and their Integration in the Athlete's Biological Passport

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paolo Menaspà

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Over the past few decades the possibility to capture real-time data from road cyclists has drastically improved. Given the increasing pressure for improved transparency and openness, there has been an increase in publication of cyclists' physiological and performance data. Recently, it has been suggested that the use of such performance biometrics may be used to strengthen the sensitivity and applicability of the Athlete Biological Passport (ABP and aid in the fight against doping. This is an interesting concept which has merit, although there are several important factors that need to be considered. These factors include accuracy of the data collected and validity (and reliability of the subsequent performance modeling. In order to guarantee high quality standards, the implementation of well-structured Quality-Systems within sporting organizations should be considered, and external certifications may be required. Various modeling techniques have been developed, many of which are based on fundamental intensity/time relationships. These models have increased our understanding of performance but are currently limited in their application, for example due to the largely unaccounted effects of environmental factors such as, heat and altitude. In conclusion, in order to use power data as a performance biometric to be integrated in the biological passport, a number of actions must be taken to ensure accuracy of the data and better understand road cycling performance in the field. This article aims to outline considerations in the quantification of cycling performance, also presenting an alternative method (i.e., monitoring race results to allow for determination of unusual performance improvements.

  18. A study of the ionizing radiation effect on some chemical changes in irradiated soy-bean flour, and its biological value assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tencheva, S.; Katsareva, Ts.

    1985-01-01

    The results of the assessment of a number of chemical indicators are presented, namely: formation of free radicals in defatted soy-bean flour irradiated with 10 kGy using EPR-spectrometry, alteration in the residual lipid fraction, estimated by the UV spectrometry and TB test. Assessment of the biological value of protein is done on the basis of the protein efficiency coefficient (PEC). For the purpose two kinds of synthetic diets, including 10% soy-bean protein, are employed. Growing rats of the Wistar line (body weight 55 g) are used in the experiment. The amino acid profile of irradiated and non-irradiated soy-bean flour is also outlined. The obtained results indicate that the amount of free radicals, found in soy-bean flour irradiated with dose 10 kGy,is approximately 11 times larger than in flour irradiated with 5 kGy. Changes in the UV spectrum of the lipid fraction are likewise disclosed

  19. Compilation and assessment of microwave bioeffects. Final report. A selective review of the literature on biological effects of microwaves in relation to the Satellite Power System (SPS)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Justesen, D.R.; Ragan, H.A.; Rogers, L.E.; Guy, A.W.; Hjeresen, D.L.; Hinds, W.T.; Phillips, R.D.

    1978-05-01

    One of many alternate sources of electrical energy that are being considered by the Department of Energy is a microwave-mediated Satellite Power System (SPS). Once inserted into geosynchronous orbit at an altitude of more than 40,000 kilometers, a satellite would collect then convert the sun's energy to 2450-MHz microwaves, which would be beamed to the Earth's surface, where a rectifying antenna (rectenna) would convert the microwaves to electrical current suitable for industrial and domestic use. The expanse of each rectenna (about 10 by 13 kilometers), the power density of the continuous-wave microwave beam (approx. 23 mW/cm/sup 2/ at center, with fall off to 1 mW/cm/sup 2/ or less at the periphery of the rectenna), and the possibility that 20 or more satellite systems will eventually be operating, creates two sets of interrelated problems for biological/ecological assessment. These are 1) the effects of microwave fields of higher intensity on airborne biota (including human beings in aircraft) that may traffic the area above the rectenna and 2) the effects of virtually perpetual fields of much lower intensity on all forms of life at and beyond the rectennae's zone of exclusion. In this review, the scientific literature is examined, not only for biological effects that are pertinent to assessment of SPS, but for hiatuses of knowledge that will have to be filled before SPS can be vouched for operational safety.

  20. Increasing URM Undergraduate Student Success through Assessment-Driven Interventions: A Multiyear Study Using Freshman-Level General Biology as a Model System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carmichael, Mary C.; St. Clair, Candace; Edwards, Andrea M.; Barrett, Peter; McFerrin, Harris; Davenport, Ian; Awad, Mohamed; Kundu, Anup; Ireland, Shubha Kale

    2016-01-01

    Xavier University of Louisiana leads the nation in awarding BS degrees in the biological sciences to African-American students. In this multiyear study with ∼5500 participants, data-driven interventions were adopted to improve student academic performance in a freshman-level general biology course. The three hour-long exams were common and administered concurrently to all students. New exam questions were developed using Bloom’s taxonomy, and exam results were analyzed statistically with validated assessment tools. All but the comprehensive final exam were returned to students for self-evaluation and remediation. Among other approaches, course rigor was monitored by using an identical set of 60 questions on the final exam across 10 semesters. Analysis of the identical sets of 60 final exam questions revealed that overall averages increased from 72.9% (2010) to 83.5% (2015). Regression analysis demonstrated a statistically significant correlation between high-risk students and their averages on the 60 questions. Additional analysis demonstrated statistically significant improvements for at least one letter grade from midterm to final and a 20% increase in the course pass rates over time, also for the high-risk population. These results support the hypothesis that our data-driven interventions and assessment techniques are successful in improving student retention, particularly for our academically at-risk students. PMID:27543637

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  2. Assessment of biological effects of pollutants in a hyper eutrophic tropical water body, Lake Beira, Sri Lanka using multiple biomarker responses of resident fish, Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pathiratne, Asoka; Pathiratne, K A S; De Seram, P K C

    2010-08-01

    Biomarkers measured at the molecular and cellular level in fish have been proposed as sensitive "early warning" tools for biological effect measurements in environmental quality assessments. Lake Beira is a hypertrophic urban water body with a complex mixture of pollutants including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and Microcystins. In this study, a suite of biomarker responses viz. biliary fluorescent aromatic compounds (FACs), hepatic ethoxyresorufin O-deethylase (EROD) and glutathione S-transferase (GST), brain and muscle cholinesterases (ChE), serum sorbitol dehydrogenase (SDH), and liver histology of Oreochromis niloticus, the dominant fish inhabiting this tropical Lake were evaluated to assess the pollution exposure and biological effects. Some fish sampled in the dry periods demonstrated prominent structural abnormalities in the liver and concomitant increase in serum SDH and reduction in hepatic GST activities in comparison to the control fish and the fish sampled in the rainy periods. The resident fish with apparently normal liver demonstrated induction of hepatic EROD and GST activities and increase in biliary FACs irrespective of the sampling period indicating bioavailability of PAHs. Muscle ChE activities of the resident fish were depressed significantly indicating exposure to anticholinesterase substances. The results revealed that fish populations residing in this Lake is under threat due to the pollution stress. Hepatic abnormalities in the fish may be mainly associated with the pollution stress due to recurrent exposure to PAHs and toxigenic Microcystis blooms in the Lake.

  3. INCORPORATION OF DNA BARCODES INTO ASSESSMENTS OF THE BIOLOGICAL INTEGRITY OF AQUATIC ECOSYSTEMS: PRECISION, ACCURACY AND COST

    Science.gov (United States)

    Historically, water quality assessments in the United States primarily focused on water chemistry assays at or near discharge sources. As it has become clear that waters also can be highly impaired from dispersed (i.e., non-point source) chemicals and non-chemical impacts, direc...

  4. EFSA Panel on Biological Hazards; Scientific Opinion on a Quantitative Microbiological Risk Assessment of Salmonella in slaughter and breeder pigs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hald, Tine

    This Quantitative Microbiological Risk Assessment (QMRA) represents a major step forward in terms of modelling Salmonella in pigs from farm to consumption as it takes into account the variability between and within EU Member States (MSs). Around 10-20% of human Salmonella infections in EU may...

  5. Adverse Outcome Pathways (AOPs) in Human Systems Biology: Gas-Phase Probes for Assessing In Vitro Enzyme System Perturbations

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Air, Climate, and Energy (ACE) and Chemical Safety for Sustainability (CSS) programs at the U.S. EnvironmentalProtection Agency (EPA) encompass broad-based research that includes assessment of the health and environmentalimpacts of anthropogenic and manufactured chemicals. On...

  6. EFSA Panel on Biological Hazards (BIOHAZ); Scientific Opinion on VTEC-seropathotype and scientific criteria regarding pathogenicity assessment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hald, Tine; Baggesen, Dorte Lau

    of verocytotoxins alone or genes encoding such verocytotoxins does not provide a sound scientific basis on which to assess risk to the consumer because there is no single or combination of marker(s) that fully define a ‘pathogenic’ VTEC. Strains positive for verocytotoxin 2 gene(vtx2)- and eae (intimin production...

  7. Assessing environmental quality status by integrating chemical and biological effect data : The Cartagena coastal zone as a case

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martínez-Gómez, Concepción; Fernández, Beatriz; Robinson, Craig D.; Campillo, J. Antonio; León, Víctor M.; Benedicto, José; Hylland, Ketil; Vethaak, A. Dick

    Cartagena coastal zone (W Mediterranean) was chosen for a practical case study to investigate the suitability of an integrated indicator framework for marine monitoring and assessment of chemicals and their effects, which was developed by ICES and OSPAR. Red mullet (Mullus barbatus) and the

  8. Corrosion of bare carbon steel as a passive sensor to assess moisture availability for biological activity in Atacama Desert soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cáceres, Luis; Davila, Alfonso F; Soliz, Alvaro; Saldivia, Jessica

    2018-02-28

    Here we consider that the corrosion of polished bared metal coupons can be used as a passive sensor to detect or identify the lower limit of water availability suitable for biological activity in Atacama Desert soils or solid substrates. For this purpose, carbon steel coupons were deposited at selected sites along a west-east transect and removed at predetermined times for morphological inspection. The advantage of this procedure is that the attributes of the oxide layer (corrosion extent, morphology and oxide phases) can be considered as a fingerprint of the atmospheric moisture history at a given time interval. Two types of coupons were used, long rectangular shaped ones that were half-buried in a vertical position, and square shaped ones that were deposited on the soil surface. The morphological attributes observed by SEM inspection were found to correlate to the so-called humectation time which is determined from local meteorological parameters. The main finding was that the decreasing trend of atmospheric moisture along the transect was closely related to corrosion behaviour and water soil penetration. For instance, at the coastal site oxide phases formed on the coupon surface rapidly evolve into well-crystallized species, while at the driest inland site Lomas Bayas only amorphous oxide was observed on the coupons.

  9. Improving data analysis in herpetology: Using Akaike's information criterion (AIC) to assess the strength of biological hypotheses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazerolle, M.J.

    2006-01-01

    In ecology, researchers frequently use observational studies to explain a given pattern, such as the number of individuals in a habitat patch, with a large number of explanatory (i.e., independent) variables. To elucidate such relationships, ecologists have long relied on hypothesis testing to include or exclude variables in regression models, although the conclusions often depend on the approach used (e.g., forward, backward, stepwise selection). Though better tools have surfaced in the mid 1970's, they are still underutilized in certain fields, particularly in herpetology. This is the case of the Akaike information criterion (AIC) which is remarkably superior in model selection (i.e., variable selection) than hypothesis-based approaches. It is simple to compute and easy to understand, but more importantly, for a given data set, it provides a measure of the strength of evidence for each model that represents a plausible biological hypothesis relative to the entire set of models considered. Using this approach, one can then compute a weighted average of the estimate and standard error for any given variable of interest across all the models considered. This procedure, termed model-averaging or multimodel inference, yields precise and robust estimates. In this paper, I illustrate the use of the AIC in model selection and inference, as well as the interpretation of results analysed in this framework with two real herpetological data sets. The AIC and measures derived from it is should be routinely adopted by herpetologists. ?? Koninklijke Brill NV 2006.

  10. Integrated Assessment of PAH Contamination in the Czech Rivers Using a Combination of Chemical and Biological Monitoring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jana Blahova

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH pollution of selected rivers in the Czech Republic. Integrated evaluation was carried out using combination of chemical and biological monitoring, in which we measured content of 1-hydroxypyrene (1-OHP in chub bile and priority PAH in water samples obtained by exposing the semipermeable membrane devices at each location. The concentrations of 1-OHP in bile samples and sum of priority PAH in water sampler ranged from 6.8 ng mg protein−1 to 106.6 ng mg protein−1 and from 5.2 ng L−1 to 173.9 ng L−1, respectively. The highest levels of biliary metabolite and PAH in water were measured at the Odra River (the Bohumín site, which is located in relatively heavily industrialized and polluted region. Statistically significant positive correlation between biliary 1-OHP and sum of PAH in water was also obtained (P<0.01, rs=0.806.

  11. Radiation dose response of normal lung assessed by Cone Beam CT - A potential tool for biologically adaptive radiation therapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bertelsen, Anders; Schytte, Tine; Bentzen, Soren M.; Hansen, Olfred; Nielsen, Morten; Brink, Carsten

    2011-01-01

    Background: Density changes of healthy lung tissue during radiotherapy as observed by Cone Beam CT (CBCT) might be an early indicator of patient specific lung toxicity. This study investigates the time course of CBCT density changes and tests for a possible correlation with locally delivered dose. Methods: A total of 665 CBCTs in 65 lung cancer patients treated with IMRT/VMAT to 60 or 66 Gy in 2 Gy fractions were analyzed. For each patient, CBCT lung density changes during the treatment course were related to the locally delivered dose. Results: A dose response is observed for the patient population at the end of the treatment course. However, the observed dose response is highly variable among patients. Density changes at 10th and 20th fraction are clearly correlated to those observed at the end of the treatment course. Conclusions: CBCT density changes in healthy lung tissue during radiotherapy correlate with the locally delivered dose and can be detected relatively early during the treatment. If these density changes are correlated to subsequent clinical toxicity this assay could form the basis for biological adaptive radiotherapy.

  12. Indoor air pollution evaluation with emphasize on HDI and biological assessment of HDA in the polyurethane factories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirmohammadi, Mirtaghi; Hakimi Ibrahim, M; Ahmad, Anees; Kadir, Mohd Omar Abdul; Mohammadyan, M; Mirashrafi, S B

    2010-06-01

    Today, many raw materials used in factories may have a dangerous effect on the physiological system of workers. One of them which is widely used in the polyurethane factories is diisocyanates. These compounds are widely used in surface coatings, polyurethane foams, adhesives, resins, elastomers, binders, and sealants. Exposure to diisocyanates causes irritation to the skin, mucous membranes, eyes, and respiratory tract. Hexamethylene diamine (HDA) is metabolite of hexamethylene diisocyanate (HDI). It is an excretory material by worker's urine who is exposed to HDI. Around 100 air samples were collected from five defined factories by midget impinger which contained dimethyl sulfoxide absorbent as a solvent and tryptamine as reagent. Samples were analyzed by high-performance liquid chromatography with EC\\UV detector using NIOSH 5522 method of sampling. Also, 50 urine samples collected from workers were also analyzed using William's biological analysis method. The concentration of HDI into all air samples were more than 88 microg/m(3), and they have shown high concentration of pollutant in the workplaces in comparison with NIOSH standard, and all of the workers' urine were contaminated by HDA. The correlation and regression test were used to obtain statistical model for HDI and HDA, which is useful for the prediction of diisocyanates pollution situation in the polyurethane factories.

  13. Corrosion of Bare Carbon Steel as a Passive Sensor to Assess Moisture Availability for Biological Activity in Atacama Desert Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caceres, Luis; Davila, Alfonso F.; Soliz, Alvaro; Saldivia, Jessica

    2018-01-01

    In this work we suggest the corrosion of polished bared metal coupons as a passive sensor to detect or identify the lower limit of water availability that could be suitable for biological activity in the Atacama Desert on soil or solid substrates. For this purpose, carbon steel coupons were deposited in selected sites along a west-east transect and removed at predetermined times for morphological inspection. The advantage of this procedure is that the attributes of the oxide layer (corrosion extent, morphology and oxide phases) can be considered as a fingerprint of the atmospheric moisture history at a given time interval. Two types of coupons were used, a long rectangular shape that are half-buried in a vertical position, and square shape that are deposited on the soil surface. The morphological attributes observed by SEM inspection is correlated to the so-called humectation time which is determined from local meteorological parameters. The main result is that the decreasing trend of atmospheric moisture along the transect is closely related to corrosion behavior and water soil penetration. For instance, while in the coastal site oxide phases formed on the coupon surface rapidly evolve to well- crystallized species, in the driest inland site Lomas Bayas only amorphous oxide is observed.

  14. Assessing effects of the entomopathogenic fungus Metarhizium brunneum on soil microbial communities in Agriotes spp. biological pest control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayerhofer, Johanna; Eckard, Sonja; Hartmann, Martin; Grabenweger, Giselher; Widmer, Franco; Leuchtmann, Adrian; Enkerli, Jürg

    2017-10-01

    The release of large quantities of microorganisms to soil for purposes such as pest control or plant growth promotion may affect the indigenous soil microbial communities. In our study, we investigated potential effects of Metarhizium brunneum ART2825 on soil fungi and prokaryota in bulk soil using high-throughput sequencing of ribosomal markers. Different formulations of this strain, and combinations of the fungus with garlic as efficacy-enhancing agent, were tested over 4 months in a pot and a field experiment carried out for biological control of Agriotes spp. in potatoes. A biocontrol effect was observed only in the pot experiment, i.e. the application of FCBK resulted in 77% efficacy. Colony counts combined with genotyping and marker sequence abundance confirmed the successful establishment of the applied strain. Only the formulated applied strain caused small shifts in fungal communities in the pot experiment. Treatment effects were in the same range as the effects caused by barley kernels, the carrier of the FCBK formulation and temporal effects. Garlic treatments and time affected prokaryotic communities. In the field experiment, only spatial differences affected fungal and prokaryotic communities. Our findings suggest that M. brunneum may not adversely affect soil microbial communities. © FEMS 2017.

  15. Structural and functional biological assessment of aggregate dredging intensity on the Belgian part of the North Sea

    OpenAIRE

    De Backer, A.; Hillewaert, H.; Van Hoey, G.; Wittoeck, J.; Hostens, K.

    2014-01-01

    Marine aggregate dredging in the Belgian part of the North Sea (BPNS) is restricted to four dedicated concession zones. Within these zones, there are areas under different dredging pressure, but with the advantage that these are situated within a similar habitat (cfr. similar sediment characteristics) . As such, this study assessed how different degrees of dredging pressure executed on a similar sandy habitat affect the benthic ecosystem. Possible responses of the macrobenthos on the dredging...

  16. Elimination of pharmaceutical residues in biologically pre-treated hospital wastewater using advanced UV irradiation technology: A comparative assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koehler, C., E-mail: christian.koehler@tudor.lu [Public Research Centre Henri Tudor/Resource Centre for Environmental Technologies, 66 rue de Luxembourg, BP 144, L-4002 Esch-sur-Alzette (Luxembourg); Venditti, S.; Igos, E.; Klepiszewski, K.; Benetto, E.; Cornelissen, A. [Public Research Centre Henri Tudor/Resource Centre for Environmental Technologies, 66 rue de Luxembourg, BP 144, L-4002 Esch-sur-Alzette (Luxembourg)

    2012-11-15

    UV irradiation technology as a membrane bioreactor (MBR) post-treatment was investigated and assessed. Both UV low pressure (LP) and medium pressure (MP) lamps were examined. The technology was installed in a pilot plant treating hospital wastewater to provide the study with adequate field data. The effect of the UV irradiation was enhanced with varying dosages of H{sub 2}O{sub 2} to establish an advanced oxidation process (AOP). The efficiency of the pharmaceutical removal process was assessed by examining 14 micropollutants (antibiotics, analgesics, anticonvulsants, beta-blockers, cytostatics and X-ray contrast media) which are typically released by hospitals and detected with liquid chromatography coupled tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). While the MBR treatment generally showed only a low degradation capacity for persistent pharmaceuticals, much better degradation was obtained by applying UV irradiation and H{sub 2}O{sub 2} as AOP. The 'conventional' cost-benefit analysis of the different technology options taking into account both electrical energy consumption and pharmaceutical removal efficiency, revealed clearly better performance of low pressure UV lamps as AOP. However, a holistic comparison between the different scenarios was carried out by evaluating their environmental impacts using the life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology. Decisive advantages were highlighted to include this approach in the decision making process.

  17. Elimination of pharmaceutical residues in biologically pre-treated hospital wastewater using advanced UV irradiation technology: A comparative assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Köhler, C.; Venditti, S.; Igos, E.; Klepiszewski, K.; Benetto, E.; Cornelissen, A.

    2012-01-01

    UV irradiation technology as a membrane bioreactor (MBR) post-treatment was investigated and assessed. Both UV low pressure (LP) and medium pressure (MP) lamps were examined. The technology was installed in a pilot plant treating hospital wastewater to provide the study with adequate field data. The effect of the UV irradiation was enhanced with varying dosages of H 2 O 2 to establish an advanced oxidation process (AOP). The efficiency of the pharmaceutical removal process was assessed by examining 14 micropollutants (antibiotics, analgesics, anticonvulsants, beta-blockers, cytostatics and X-ray contrast media) which are typically released by hospitals and detected with liquid chromatography coupled tandem mass spectrometry (LC–MS/MS). While the MBR treatment generally showed only a low degradation capacity for persistent pharmaceuticals, much better degradation was obtained by applying UV irradiation and H 2 O 2 as AOP. The “conventional” cost-benefit analysis of the different technology options taking into account both electrical energy consumption and pharmaceutical removal efficiency, revealed clearly better performance of low pressure UV lamps as AOP. However, a holistic comparison between the different scenarios was carried out by evaluating their environmental impacts using the life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology. Decisive advantages were highlighted to include this approach in the decision making process.

  18. Elimination of pharmaceutical residues in biologically pre-treated hospital wastewater using advanced UV irradiation technology: a comparative assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Köhler, C; Venditti, S; Igos, E; Klepiszewski, K; Benetto, E; Cornelissen, A

    2012-11-15

    UV irradiation technology as a membrane bioreactor (MBR) post-treatment was investigated and assessed. Both UV low pressure (LP) and medium pressure (MP) lamps were examined. The technology was installed in a pilot plant treating hospital wastewater to provide the study with adequate field data. The effect of the UV irradiation was enhanced with varying dosages of H2O2 to establish an advanced oxidation process (AOP). The efficiency of the pharmaceutical removal process was assessed by examining 14 micropollutants (antibiotics, analgesics, anticonvulsants, beta-blockers, cytostatics and X-ray contrast media) which are typically released by hospitals and detected with liquid chromatography coupled tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). While the MBR treatment generally showed only a low degradation capacity for persistent pharmaceuticals, much better degradation was obtained by applying UV irradiation and H2O2 as AOP. The "conventional" cost-benefit analysis of the different technology options taking into account both electrical energy consumption and pharmaceutical removal efficiency, revealed clearly better performance of low pressure UV lamps as AOP. However, a holistic comparison between the different scenarios was carried out by evaluating their environmental impacts using the life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology. Decisive advantages were highlighted to include this approach in the decision making process. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Fishery Biology Database (AGDBS)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Basic biological data are the foundation on which all assessments of fisheries resources are built. These include parameters such as the size and age composition of...

  20. Using a biological aerated filter to treat mixed water-borne volatile organic compounds and assessing its emissions

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHENG Wen-Hsi

    2009-01-01

    A biological aerated filter (BAF) was evaluated as a fixed-biofilm processes to remove water-borne volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from a multiple layer ceramic capacitor (MLCC) manufacturing plant in southern Taiwan.The components of VOC were identified to be toluene,1,2,4-trimethylbenzene,1,3,5-trimethylbenzene,bromodichloromethane and isopropanol (IPA).The full-scale BAF was constructed of two separate reactors in series,respectively using 10-cm and 15-cm diameter polypropylene balls as the packing materials and a successful preliminary bench-scale experiment was performed to feasibility.Performance results show that the BAF removed over 90% chemical oxygen demand (COD) from the influent with (1188 ± 605) mg/L of COD.A total organic loading of 2.76 kg biochemical oxygen demand (BOD)/(m~3 packing·d) was determined for the packed bed,in which the flow pattern approached that of a mixed flow.A limited VOC concentration of (0.97 ± 0.29) ppmv (as methane) was emitted from the BAF system.Moreover,the emission rate of VOC was calculated using the proposed formula,based on an air-water mass equilibrium relationship,and compared to the simulated results obtained using the Water 9 model.Both estimation approaches of calculation and model simulation using Water 9 evaluating VOC emissions reveal that 0.1% IPA (0.0031-0.0037 kg/d) was aerated into a gaseous phase,and 30% to 40% (0.006-0.008 kg/d) of the toluene was aerated.

  1. Assessing instructor intervention upon the perceptions, attitudes, and anxieties of community college biology students toward cooperative learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gafford, Kenneth Allen

    The differences between two experimental groups using cooperative learning activities were examined during the initial eight weeks of a biology course. While both groups participated in the same cooperative learning activities, only one group received deliberate instructor interventions. These interventions were designed to help students think positively about working in cooperative learning groups while alleviating anxiety toward cooperative learning. Initially, all students were uncomfortable and reported trouble staying focused during cooperative learning. The final quantitative results indicated that the group who received the interventions had more positive perceptions toward cooperative learning but their attitudes and anxiety levels showed no significant difference from the non-intervention group; advantages occurred specifically for thinking on task, student engagement, perceptions of task importance, and best levels of challenge and skill. Intervention participants had a higher mean score on the class exam administered during the eight-week study but it was not significantly different. Qualitative data revealed that the intervention participants experienced greater overall consequence, mainly in the areas of engagement, believed skill, and self-worth. According to flow theory, when students are actively engaged, the probability of distraction by fears and unrelated ideas is reduced, for instance, how they are perceived by others. These findings corroborate constructivist theories, particularly the ones relative to students working in cooperative groups. Researchers should continue to use appropriate methods to further explore how students of various abilities and developmental levels are affected by their perceptions, attitudes, and anxieties relative to different instructional contexts. Given the highly contextual nature of students' learning and motivation, researchers need to examine a number of meaningful questions by comparing students' perceptions

  2. Use of a silver ion selective electrode to assess mechanisms responsible for biological effects of silver nanoparticles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koch, Marcus; Kiefer, Silke; Cavelius, Christian; Kraegeloh, Annette

    2012-01-01

    For a detailed analysis of the biological effects of silver nanoparticles, discrimination between effects related to the nano-scale size of the particles and effects of released silver ions is required. Silver ions are either present in the initial particle dispersion or released by the nanoparticles over time. The aim of this study is to monitor the free silver ion activity {Ag + } in the presence of silver nanoparticles using a silver ion selective electrode. Therefore, silver in the form of silver nanoparticles, 4.2 ± 1.4 nm and 2–30 nm in size, or silver nitrate was added to cell culture media in the absence or presence of A549 cells as a model for human type II alveolar epithelial cells. The free silver ion activity measured after the addition of silver nanoparticles was determined by the initial ionic silver content. The p {Ag + } values indicated that the cell culture media decrease the free silver ion activity due to binding of silver ions by constituents of the media. In the presence of A549 cells, the free silver ion activity was further reduced. The morphology of A549 cells, cultivated in DME medium containing 9.1% (v/v) FBS, was affected by adding AgNO 3 at concentrations of ≥30 μM after 24 h. In comparison, silver nanoparticles up to a concentration of 200 μM Ag did not affect cellular morphology. Our experiments indicate that the effect of silver nanoparticles is mainly mediated by silver ions. An effect of silver on cellular morphology was observed at p {Ag + } ≤ 9.2.

  3. Seawater detection and biological assessments regarding transmission of the oyster parasite Mikrocytos mackini using qPCR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polinski, Mark P; Meyer, Gary R; Lowe, Geoffrey J; Abbott, Cathryn L

    2017-10-18

    Mikrocytos mackini is an intracellular parasite of oysters and causative agent of Denman Island disease in Pacific oysters Crassostrea gigas. Although M. mackini has been investigated for decades, its natural mode of transmission, mechanism for host entry, and environmental stability are largely unknown. We explored these biological characteristics of M. mackini using a recently described quantitative PCR (qPCR) assay. We detected M. mackini in the flow-through tank water of experimentally infected oysters and during disease remission in host tissues following 6 wk of elevated water temperature. Waterborne exposure of oysters to M. mackini further confirmed the potential for extracellular seawater transmission of this parasite and also identified host gill to have the highest early and continued prevalence for M. mackini DNA compared to stomach, mantle, labial palps, or adductor muscle samples. However, infections following waterborne challenge were slow to develop despite a substantial exposure (>106 M. mackini l-1 for 24 h), and further investigation demonstrated that M. mackini occurrence and infectivity severely declined following extracellular seawater incubation of more than 24 h. This study demonstrates a potential for using qPCR to monitor M. mackini in wild or farmed oyster populations during periods of disease remission or from environmental seawater samples. This work also suggests that gill tissues may provide a primary site for waterborne entry and possibly shedding of M. mackini in oysters. Further, although extracellular seawater transmission of M. mackini was possible, poor environmental stability and infection efficiency likely restricts the geographic transmission of M. mackini between oysters in natural environs and may help to explain localized areas of infection.

  4. Three-dimensional image technology in forensic anthropology: Assessing the validity of biological profiles derived from CT-3D images of the skeleton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia de Leon Valenzuela, Maria Julia

    This project explores the reliability of building a biological profile for an unknown individual based on three-dimensional (3D) images of the individual's skeleton. 3D imaging technology has been widely researched for medical and engineering applications, and it is increasingly being used as a tool for anthropological inquiry. While the question of whether a biological profile can be derived from 3D images of a skeleton with the same accuracy as achieved when using dry bones has been explored, bigger sample sizes, a standardized scanning protocol and more interobserver error data are needed before 3D methods can become widely and confidently used in forensic anthropology. 3D images of Computed Tomography (CT) scans were obtained from 130 innominate bones from Boston University's skeletal collection (School of Medicine). For each bone, both 3D images and original bones were assessed using the Phenice and Suchey-Brooks methods. Statistical analysis was used to determine the agreement between 3D image assessment versus traditional assessment. A pool of six individuals with varying experience in the field of forensic anthropology scored a subsample (n = 20) to explore interobserver error. While a high agreement was found for age and sex estimation for specimens scored by the author, the interobserver study shows that observers found it difficult to apply standard methods to 3D images. Higher levels of experience did not result in higher agreement between observers, as would be expected. Thus, a need for training in 3D visualization before applying anthropological methods to 3D bones is suggested. Future research should explore interobserver error using a larger sample size in order to test the hypothesis that training in 3D visualization will result in a higher agreement between scores. The need for the development of a standard scanning protocol focusing on the optimization of 3D image resolution is highlighted. Applications for this research include the possibility

  5. Clinical value of Pro-GRP and T lymphocyte subpopulation for the assessment of immune functions of lung cancer patients after DC-CIK biological therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Lijie; Wang, Jing; Chang, Dandan; Lv, Dandan; Li, Haina; Zhang, Heping

    2018-02-01

    The present study investigated the aptness of assessing the levels of progastrin-releasing peptide (Pro-GRP) in addition to the T lymphocyte subpopulation in lung cancer patients prior to and after therapy for determining immune function. A total of 45 patients with lung cancer were recruited and stratified in to a non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and an SCLC group. Prior to and after treatment by combined biological therapy comprising chemotherapy or chemoradiotherapy followed by three cycles of retransformation of autologous dendritic cells-cytokine-induced killer cells (DC-CIK), the peripheral blood was assessed for populations of CD3 + , CD4 + , CD8 + and regulatory T cells (Treg) by flow cytometry, and for the levels of pro-GRP, carcinoembryonic antigen, neuron-specific enolase and Cyfra 21-1. The results revealed that in NSCLC patients, CD8 + T lymphocytes and Treg populations were decreased, and that CD3 + and CD4 + T lymphocytes as well as the CD4 + /CD8 + ratio were increased after therapy; in SCLC patients, CD3 + , CD4 + and CD8 + T lymphocytes were increased, while Treg cells were decreased after treatment compared with those at baseline. In each group, Pro-GRP was decreased compared with that prior to treatment, and in the SCLC group only, an obvious negative correlation was identified between Pro-GRP and the T lymphocyte subpopulation. Furthermore, a significant correlation between Pro-GRP and Tregs was identified in each group. In conclusion, the present study revealed that the immune function of the patients was improved after biological therapy. The results suggested a significant correlation between Pro-GRP and the T lymphocyte subpopulation in SCLC patients. Detection of Pro-GRP may assist the early clinical diagnosis of SCLC and may also be used to assess the immune regulatory function of patients along with the T lymphocyte subpopulation. Biological therapy with retransformed autologous DC-CIK was indicated to enhance the specific elimination

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2008-05-15

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

  7. Assessing the spatial pattern of a river water quality in southern Brazil by multivariate analysis of biological and chemical indicators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. B. B. Cassanego

    Full Text Available Abstract This study assessed the genotoxicity and chemical quality of the Rio dos Sinos, southern Brazil. During two years, bimonthly, cuttings of Tradescantia pallida var. purpurea with flower buds were exposed to river water samples from Caraá, Santo Antônio da Patrulha, Taquara and Campo Bom, which are municipalities located in the upper, middle and lower stretches of the Rio dos Sinos basin. Simultaneously, chemical parameters were analyzed, rainfall data were surveyed and negative (distilled water and positive (0.1% formaldehyde controls were made. Micronuclei (MCN frequencies were determined in tetrads of pollen grain mother cells. From the upper stretch toward the lower, there was an increase in the frequency of MCN and in concentrations of chemical parameters. Cadmium, lead, copper, total chromium and zinc were present at the four sites and a concentration gradient was not demonstrated along the river. The multivariate analysis revealed that two principal components exist, which accounted for 62.3% of the observed variances. Although genotoxicity was observed in Santo Antônio da Patrulha, the water presented higher mean values for most of the assessed parameters, in the lower stretch, where urbanization and industrialization are greater. The spatial and temporal pattern of water quality observed reinforces the importance of considering the environmental factors and their effects on organisms in an integrated way in watercourse monitoring programs.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zorita, Izaskun; Ortiz-Zarragoitia, Maren; Apraiz, Itxaso; Cancio, Ibon; Orbea, Amaia; Soto, Manu; Marigomez, Ionan; Cajaraville, Miren P.

    2008-01-01

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

  9. Assessing the Possibility of Biological Complexity on Other Worlds, with an Estimate of the Occurrence of Complex Life in the Milky Way Galaxy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louis N. Irwin

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Rational speculation about biological evolution on other worlds is one of the outstanding challenges in astrobiology. With the growing confirmation that multiplanetary systems abound in the universe, the prospect that life occurs redundantly throughout the cosmos is gaining widespread support. Given the enormous number of possible abodes for life likely to be discovered on an ongoing basis, the prospect that life could have evolved into complex, macro-organismic communities in at least some cases merits consideration. Toward that end, we here propose a Biological Complexity Index (BCI, designed to provide a quantitative estimate of the relative probability that complex, macro-organismic life forms could have emerged on other worlds. The BCI ranks planets and moons by basic, first-order characteristics detectable with available technology. By our calculation only 11 (~1.7% of the extrasolar planets known to date have a BCI above that of Europa; but by extrapolation, the total of such planets could exceed 100 million in our galaxy alone. This is the first quantitative assessment of the plausibility of complex life throughout the universe based on empirical data. It supports the view that the evolution of complex life on other worlds is rare in frequency but large in absolute number.

  10. Designing and conducting tabletop exercises to assess public health preparedness for manmade and naturally occurring biological threats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dausey David J

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Since 2001, state and local health departments in the United States (US have accelerated efforts to prepare for high-impact public health emergencies. One component of these activities has been the development and conduct of exercise programs to assess capabilities, train staff and build relationships. This paper summarizes lessons learned from tabletop exercises about public health emergency preparedness and about the process of developing, conducting, and evaluating them. Methods We developed, conducted, and evaluated 31 tabletop exercises in partnership with state and local health departments throughout the US from 2003 to 2006. Participant self evaluations, after action reports, and tabletop exercise evaluation forms were used to identify aspects of the exercises themselves, as well as public health emergency responses that participants found more or less challenging, and to highlight lessons learned about tabletop exercise design. Results Designing the exercises involved substantial collaboration with representatives from participating health departments to assure that the scenarios were credible, focused attention on local preparedness needs and priorities, and were logistically feasible to implement. During execution of the exercises, nearly all health departments struggled with a common set of challenges relating to disease surveillance, epidemiologic investigations, communications, command and control, and health care surge capacity. In contrast, performance strengths were more varied across participating sites, reflecting specific attributes of individual health departments or communities, experience with actual public health emergencies, or the emphasis of prior preparedness efforts. Conclusion The design, conduct, and evaluation of the tabletop exercises described in this report benefited from collaborative planning that involved stakeholders from participating health departments and exercise developers and

  11. Nonclinical Safety Assessment of Anti-Factor D: Key Strategies and Challenges for the Nonclinical Development of Intravitreal Biologics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bantseev, Vladimir; Erickson, Rebecca; Leipold, Douglas; Amaya, Caroline; Miller, Paul E; Booler, Helen; Thackaberry, Evan A

    The nonclinical toxicology program described here was designed to characterize the safety profile of anti-factor D (AFD; FCFD4514S, lampalizumab) to support intravitreal (ITV) administration in patients with geographic atrophy (GA). The toxicity of AFD was assessed in a single-dose and 6-month repeat-dose study in monkeys at doses up to 10 mg/eye. Toxicity was assessed by clinical ophthalmic examinations, intraocular pressure measurements, ocular photography, electroretinography, fluorescein angiography, optical coherence tomography, and anatomic pathology. Systemic exposure to AFD generally increased with the increase in dose level. The increases in mean maximal concentration and area under the curve values were roughly dose proportional. No accumulation of AFD was observed following 10 doses, and drug exposures were not affected by anti-drug antibodies. AFD was locally and systemically well tolerated in monkeys following ITV doses of up to 10 mg/eye. Ocular effects associated with AFD were limited to transient, reversible, dose-related, aqueous cell responses and injection-related, mild, vitreal cell responses. In the 6-month repeat-dose study, 2 monkeys had a nonspecific immune response to AFD that resulted in severe ocular inflammation, attributed to administration of a heterologous (humanized) protein. The comprehensive toxicology program in monkeys described here was designed to evaluate the safety profile of AFD and to support multiple ITV injections in the clinic. Administration of a heterologous (humanized) protein presents a challenge, and immunogenicity in nonclinical species is not predictive of immunogenicity in humans. Taken together, the results of the nonclinical program described here support the use of AFD in patients with GA.

  12. Modern Biology

    OpenAIRE

    ALEKSIC, Branko

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this course is to learn the philosophy, principles, and techniques of modern biology. The course is particularly designed for those who have not learned biology previously or whose major is other than biology, and who may think that they do not need to know any biology at all. The topics are covered in a rather general, overview manner, but certain level of diligence in grasping concepts and memorizing the terminology is expected.

  13. Removal of Antibiotics in Biological Wastewater Treatment Systems—A Critical Assessment Using the Activated Sludge Modeling Framework for Xenobiotics (ASM-X)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Polesel, Fabio; Andersen, Henrik Rasmus; Trapp, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    Many scientific studies present removal efficiencies for pharmaceuticals in laboratory-, pilot-, and full-scale wastewater treatment plants, based on observations that may be impacted by theoretical and methodological approaches used. In this Critical Review, we evaluated factors influencing...... observed removal efficiencies of three antibiotics (sulfamethoxazole, ciprofloxacin, tetracycline) in pilot- and full-scale biological treatment systems. Factors assessed include (i) retransformation to parent pharmaceuticals from e.g., conjugated metabolites and analogues, (ii) solid retention time (SRT......), (iii) fractions sorbed onto solids, and (iv) dynamics in influent and effluent loading. A recently developed methodology was used, relying on the comparison of removal efficiency predictions (obtained with the Activated Sludge Model for Xenobiotics (ASM-X)) with representative measured data from...

  14. Hydrologic, water-quality, and biological assessment of Laguna de las Salinas, Ponce, Puerto Rico, January 2003-September 2004

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soler-López, Luis R.; Gómez-Gómez, Fernando; Rodríguez-Martínez, Jesús

    2005-01-01

    The Laguna de Las Salinas is a shallow, 35-hectare, hypersaline lagoon (depth less than 1 meter) in the municipio of Ponce, located on the southern coastal plain of Puerto Rico. Hydrologic, water-quality, and biological data in the lagoon were collected between January 2003 and September 2004 to establish baseline conditions. During the study period, rainfall was about 1,130 millimeters, with much of the rain recorded during three distinct intense events. The lagoon is connected to the sea by a shallow, narrow channel. Subtle tidal changes, combined with low rainfall and high evaporation rates, kept the lagoon at salinities above that of the sea throughout most of the study. Water-quality properties measured on-site (temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, specific conductance, and Secchi disk transparency) exhibited temporal rather than spatial variations and distribution. Although all physical parameters were in compliance with current regulatory standards for Puerto Rico, hyperthermic and hypoxic conditions were recorded during isolated occasions. Nutrient concentrations were relatively low and in compliance with current regulatory standards (less than 5.0 and 1.0 milligrams per liter for total nitrogen and total phosphorus, respectively). The average total nitrogen concentration was 1.9 milligrams per liter and the average total phosphorus concentration was 0.4 milligram per liter. Total organic carbon concentrations ranged from 12.0 to 19.0 milligrams per liter. Chlorophyll a was the predominant form of photosynthetic pigment in the water. The average chlorophyll a concentration was 13.4 micrograms per liter. Chlorophyll b was detected (detection limits 0.10 microgram per liter) only twice during the study. About 90 percent of the primary productivity in the Laguna de Las Salinas was generated by periphyton such as algal mats and macrophytes such as seagrasses. Of the average net productivity of 13.6 grams of oxygen per cubic meter per day derived from the diel

  15. In-vitro Cell Exposure Studies for the Assessment of Nanoparticle Toxicity in the Lung - A Dialogue between Aerosol Science and Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hanns-Rudolf, Paur; Cassee, Flemming R.; Teeguarden, Justin G.; Fissan, Heinz; Diabate, Silvia; Aufderheide, M.; Kreyling, Wolfgang G.; Hanninen, Otto; Kasper, G.; Riediker, Michael; Rothen-Rutishauser, Barbara; Schmid, Otmar

    2011-10-01

    The rapid introduction of engineered nanostructured materials into numerous industrial and consumer products will result in enhanced exposure to engineered nanoparticles. Workplace exposure has been identified as the most likely source of uncontrolled inhalation of engineered aerosolized nanoparticles, but release of engineered nanoparticles may occur at any stage of the lifecycle of consumer products. The dynamic development of new nanomaterials with possibly unknown toxicological effects poses a challenge for the assessment of nanoparticle induced toxicity and safety. In this consensus document from a workshop on in-vitro cell systems for nanotoxicity testing an overview is given of the main issues concerning inhalation exposure to nanoparticles, lung physiology, nanoparticle-related biological mechanisms, in-vitro cell exposure systems for nanoparticles and social aspects of nanotechnology. The workshop participants recognized the large potential of in-vitro cell exposure systems for reliable, high-throughput screening of nanotoxicity. For the investigation of pulmonary nanotoxicity, a strong preference was expressed for air-liquid interface (ALI) cell exposure systems (rather than submerged cell exposure systems) as they closely resemble in-vivo conditions in the lungs and they allow for unaltered and dosimetrically accurate delivery of aerosolized nanoparticles to the cells. The members of the workshop believe that further advances in in-vitro cell exposure studies would be greatly facilitated by a more active role of the aerosol scientists. The technical know-how for developing and running ALI in-vitro exposure systems is available in the aerosol community and at the same time biologists/toxicologists are required for proper assessment of the biological impact of nanoparticles.

  16. In-vitro Cell Exposure Studies for the Assessment of Nanoparticle Toxicity in the Lung - A Dialogue between Aerosol Science and Biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hanns-Rudolf, Paur; Cassee, Flemming R.; Teeguarden, Justin G.; Fissan, Heinz; Diabate, Silvia; Aufderheide, M.; Kreyling, Wolfgang G.; Hanninen, Otto; Kasper, G.; Riediker, Michael; Rothen-Rutishauser, Barbara; Schmid, Otmar

    2011-01-01

    The rapid introduction of engineered nanostructured materials into numerous industrial and consumer products will result in enhanced exposure to engineered nanoparticles. Workplace exposure has been identified as the most likely source of uncontrolled inhalation of engineered aerosolized nanoparticles, but release of engineered nanoparticles may occur at any stage of the lifecycle of consumer products. The dynamic development of new nanomaterials with possibly unknown toxicological effects poses a challenge for the assessment of nanoparticle induced toxicity and safety. In this consensus document from a workshop on in-vitro cell systems for nanotoxicity testing an overview is given of the main issues concerning inhalation exposure to nanoparticles, lung physiology, nanoparticle-related biological mechanisms, in-vitro cell exposure systems for nanoparticles and social aspects of nanotechnology. The workshop participants recognized the large potential of in-vitro cell exposure systems for reliable, high-throughput screening of nanotoxicity. For the investigation of pulmonary nanotoxicity, a strong preference was expressed for air-liquid interface (ALI) cell exposure systems (rather than submerged cell exposure systems) as they closely resemble in-vivo conditions in the lungs and they allow for unaltered and dosimetrically accurate delivery of aerosolized nanoparticles to the cells. The members of the workshop believe that further advances in in-vitro cell exposure studies would be greatly facilitated by a more active role of the aerosol scientists. The technical know-how for developing and running ALI in-vitro exposure systems is available in the aerosol community and at the same time biologists/toxicologists are required for proper assessment of the biological impact of nanoparticles.

  17. Comparative assessment of phthalate removal and risk in biological wastewater treatment systems of developing countries and small communities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gani, Khalid Muzamil, E-mail: khalidmzml@gmail.com; Kazmi, Absar Ahmad, E-mail: absarakazmi@yahoo.com

    2016-11-01

    Phthalates are widely used in plastic and personnel care products. Being non-steroid endocrine disrupting compounds, their exposure have toxic effects on aquatic life and human health. The aim of this study was a comparative assessment of their fate and risk in full scale wastewater treatment along with influence of seasonal variations. Four priority phthalates, Diethylphthalate (DEP), Dibutylphthalate (DBP), Benzylbutyl phthalate (BBP) and Diethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP) were chosen for this study and wastewater treatment plants investigated were designed as nutrient removal based sequencing batch reactor (SBR), conventional activated sludge process (ASP) and up flow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) with polishing pond. Results showed that the main removal mechanism of phthalates was biotransformation with removal contribution of 74% in SBR, 65% in conventional ASP and 37% in UASB. Overall removal of phthalates was maximum in the treatment combination of UASB and pond (83%) followed by SBR (80%) and conventional ASP (74%). Seasonal influences on occurrence, removal and risk of these phthalates were also studied. The concentration of DEP, DBP and DEHP in untreated wastewater increased by 2, 7 and 2 μg/L, respectively in summer. However in sludge, only large molecular weight phthalates BBP and DEHP increased in winter by 3 mg/kg and 12 mg/kg, respectively. Seasonal variations in removal of phthalates were discrepant in each process with better removal during summer. Risk assessment of phthalates to aquatic life showed that there is no potential risk of DEP, DBP and BBP from effluents of treatment plants however risk quotient of DEHP was in the range of 27–73 in both seasons which indicate probable risk to aquatic organisms. Phthalate risk to human beings estimated by daily intake of phthalates was in the range of 0.3 ± 0.1 to 20 ± 0.7 ng/kg/d and far below their respective reference dosages, demonstrating the potential of these treatment plants to reduce the risk

  18. Comparative assessment of phthalate removal and risk in biological wastewater treatment systems of developing countries and small communities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gani, Khalid Muzamil; Kazmi, Absar Ahmad

    2016-01-01

    Phthalates are widely used in plastic and personnel care products. Being non-steroid endocrine disrupting compounds, their exposure have toxic effects on aquatic life and human health. The aim of this study was a comparative assessment of their fate and risk in full scale wastewater treatment along with influence of seasonal variations. Four priority phthalates, Diethylphthalate (DEP), Dibutylphthalate (DBP), Benzylbutyl phthalate (BBP) and Diethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP) were chosen for this study and wastewater treatment plants investigated were designed as nutrient removal based sequencing batch reactor (SBR), conventional activated sludge process (ASP) and up flow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) with polishing pond. Results showed that the main removal mechanism of phthalates was biotransformation with removal contribution of 74% in SBR, 65% in conventional ASP and 37% in UASB. Overall removal of phthalates was maximum in the treatment combination of UASB and pond (83%) followed by SBR (80%) and conventional ASP (74%). Seasonal influences on occurrence, removal and risk of these phthalates were also studied. The concentration of DEP, DBP and DEHP in untreated wastewater increased by 2, 7 and 2 μg/L, respectively in summer. However in sludge, only large molecular weight phthalates BBP and DEHP increased in winter by 3 mg/kg and 12 mg/kg, respectively. Seasonal variations in removal of phthalates were discrepant in each process with better removal during summer. Risk assessment of phthalates to aquatic life showed that there is no potential risk of DEP, DBP and BBP from effluents of treatment plants however risk quotient of DEHP was in the range of 27–73 in both seasons which indicate probable risk to aquatic organisms. Phthalate risk to human beings estimated by daily intake of phthalates was in the range of 0.3 ± 0.1 to 20 ± 0.7 ng/kg/d and far below their respective reference dosages, demonstrating the potential of these treatment plants to reduce the risk

  19. An assessment of biological processes close to the sea bed in a slope region and its significance to the assessment of sea bed disposal of radioactive waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hargreaves, P.M.; Ellis, C.J.; Angel, M.V.

    1984-01-01

    Vertical profiles of planktonic and micronektonic biomass observed close to the sea bed along a transect running up the continental slope on the southern flank of the Porcupine Seabight (to the southwest of Ireland) showed that a doubling in biomass concentration occurs from 100 to 10m above the sea bed. Comparison with biomass concentrations at two deep water stations, one in the Seabight and the other in the Rockall Trough, showed that there was a consistent increase in standing crop close to the sea bed over the slope. Supplementary data were collected on the northern flank of the Seabight. Analysis of both taxonomic groups and individual species showed that some taxa were more abundant near the sea floor and extended their vertical ranges to greater depths over the slope than over deep water, other taxa were unaffected. The implications to the problem of assessing the safety of sea bed disposal of high level radioactive waste are summarised. (author)

  20. Biological Assessment of a Calcium Silicate Incorporated Hydroxyapatite-Gelatin Nanocomposite: A Comparison to Decellularized Bone Matrix

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dong Joon Lee

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Our laboratory utilized biomimicry to develop a synthetic bone scaffold based on hydroxyapatite-gelatin-calcium silicate (HGCS. Here, we evaluated the potential of HGCS scaffold in bone formation in vivo using the rat calvarial critical-sized defect (CSD. Twelve Sprague-Dawley rats were randomized to four groups: control (defect only, decellularized bone matrix (DECBM, and HGCS with and without multipotent adult progenitor cells (MAPCs. DECBM was prepared by removing all the cells using SDS and NH4OH. After 12 weeks, the CSD specimens were harvested to evaluate radiographical, histological, and histomorphometrical outcomes. The in vitro osteogenic effects of the materials were studied by focal adhesion, MTS, and alizarin red. Micro-CT analysis indicated that the DECBM and the HGCS scaffold groups developed greater radiopaque areas than the other groups. Bone regeneration, assessed using histological analysis and fluorochrome labeling, was the highest in the HGCS scaffold seeded with MAPCs. The DECBM group showed limited osteoinductivity, causing a gap between the implant and host tissue. The group grafted with HGCS+MAPCs resulting in twice as much new bone formation seems to indicate a role for effective bone regeneration. In conclusion, the novel HGCS scaffold could improve bone regeneration and is a promising carrier for stem cell-mediated bone regeneration.

  1. Assessment of biological effects resulting from large scale applications of coal power plant wastes in building technology in Poland

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pensko, J.; Geisler, J.

    1980-01-01

    Some of the building materials commonly used in Poland contain natural radioactive elements and some contain radioactive industrial wastes. It has been shown that these building materials could induce additional annual doses to the inhabitants of the order of 0.4 mGy gamma radiation to the whole body and about 13 mSv alpha radiation to the critical tissues of the respiratory tract. On the basis of these dosimetric data and demographic and forecasting data, the number of severe genetic effects and cancer deaths caused by the additional radiation doses in dwellings were assessed for the population of Poland for the period 1951-2010. It was estimated that additional somatic effects in six consecutive decades will result in approximately 31,200 cancer deaths, including about 26,300 deaths caused by lung cancer. The expected number of severe genetic effects resulting from additional doses of ionizing radiation absorbed by parents indoors will amount to about 260 cases in the first generation and about 7500 cases in succeeding generations. (H.K.)

  2. Simulation to aid in interpreting biological relevance and setting of population-level protection goals for risk assessment of pesticides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Topping, Christopher John; Luttik, Robert

    2017-10-01

    Specific protection goals (SPGs) comprise an explicit expression of the environmental components that need protection and the maximum impacts that can be tolerated. SPGs are set by risk managers and are typically based on protecting populations or functions. However, the measurable endpoints available to risk managers, at least for vertebrates, are typically laboratory tests. We demonstrate, using the example of eggshell thinning in skylarks, how simulation can be used to place laboratory endpoints in context of population-level effects as an aid to setting the SPGs. We develop explanatory scenarios investigating the impact of different assumptions of eggshell thinning on skylark population size, density and distribution in 10 Danish landscapes, chosen to represent the range of typical Danish agricultural conditions. Landscape and timing of application of the pesticide were found to be the most critical factors to consider in the impact assessment. Consequently, a regulatory scenario of monoculture spring barley with an early spray treatment eliciting the eggshell thinning effect was applied using concentrations eliciting effects of zero to 100% in steps of 5%. Setting the SPGs requires balancing scientific, social and political realities. However, the provision of clear and detailed options such as those from comprehensive simulation results can inform the decision process by improving transparency and by putting the more abstract testing data into the context of real-world impacts. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

    Two species of Trichogramma wasps were assessed for their effectiveness against yellow stem borer Scirpophaga incertulas. A laboratory cage test with T. japonicum and T. chilonis showed that both species parasitized yellow stem borer egg masses at 60.0% ± 9.13% and 40.7% ± 7.11%, respectively, with egg parasitism rates of 15.8% ± 22.2% for T. japonicum and 2.8% ± 5.0% for T. chilonis. Once the host eggs were parasitized, emergence rates were high for both species (95.7% ± 0.12% for T. japonicum and 100% for T. chilonis). In paddy field trials, the two Trichogramma species were released at three densities (50,000/ha, 100,000/ha and 200,000/ha) in Southwestern China. Egg mass parasitism was 9% ± 7.7% for T. japonicum and 15% ± 14.1% for T. chilonis, and again only a relatively small fraction of eggs was successfully parasitized. No clear conclusion could be drawn on the most efficient release rate as no significant differences were found among the three release rates. A comparison of field-collected T. japonicum with T. japonicum and T. chilonis mass reared on Corcyra cephalonica showed significantly larger body size and ovipositor length in field-collected wasps, suggesting potentially higher effectiveness on yellow stem borer eggs after at least one generation on the target host. Factors contributing to the low field parasitism rates are discussed. PMID:28208706

  4. A Critical Assessment of the Microorganisms Proposed to be Important to Enhanced Biological Phosphorus Removal in Full-Scale Wastewater Treatment Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stokholm-Bjerregaard, Mikkel; McIlroy, Simon J; Nierychlo, Marta; Karst, Søren M; Albertsen, Mads; Nielsen, Per H

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the microbiology of phosphorus (P) removal is considered essential to knowledge-based optimization of enhanced biological P removal (EBPR) systems. Biological P removal is achieved in these systems by promoting the growth of organisms collectively known as the polyphosphate accumulating organisms (PAOs). Also considered important to EBPR are the glycogen accumulating organisms (GAOs), which are theorized to compete with the PAOs for resources at the expense of P removal efficiency. Numerous studies have sought to identify the PAOs and their GAOs competitors, with several candidates proposed for each over the last few decades. The current study collectively assessed the abundance and diversity of all proposed PAOs and GAOs in 18 Danish full-scale wastewater treatment plants with well-working biological nutrient removal over a period of 9 years using 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing. The microbial community structure in all plants was relatively stable over time. Evidence for the role of the proposed PAOs and GAOs in EBPR varies and is critically assessed, in light of their calculated amplicon abundances, to indicate which of these are important in full-scale systems. Bacteria from the genus Tetrasphaera were the most abundant of the PAOs. The " Candidatus Accumulibacter" PAOs were in much lower abundance and appear to be biased by the amplicon-based method applied. The genera Dechloromonas, Microlunatus , and Tessaracoccus were identified as abundant putative PAO that require further research attention. Interestingly, the actinobacterial Micropruina and sbr-gs28 phylotypes were among the most abundant of the putative GAOs. Members of the genera Defluviicoccus, Propionivibrio , the family Competibacteraceae, and the spb280 group were also relatively abundant in some plants. Despite observed high abundances of GAOs (periodically exceeding 20% of the amplicon reads), P removal performance was maintained, indicating that these organisms were not

  5. A Critical Assessment of the Microorganisms Proposed to be Important to Enhanced Biological Phosphorus Removal in Full-Scale Wastewater Treatment Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Per H. Nielsen

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the microbiology of phosphorus (P removal is considered essential to knowledge-based optimization of enhanced biological P removal (EBPR systems. Biological P removal is achieved in these systems by promoting the growth of organisms collectively known as the polyphosphate accumulating organisms (PAOs. Also considered important to EBPR are the glycogen accumulating organisms (GAOs, which are theorized to compete with the PAOs for resources at the expense of P removal efficiency. Numerous studies have sought to identify the PAOs and their GAOs competitors, with several candidates proposed for each over the last few decades. The current study collectively assessed the abundance and diversity of all proposed PAOs and GAOs in 18 Danish full-scale wastewater treatment plants with well-working biological nutrient removal over a period of 9 years using 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing. The microbial community structure in all plants was relatively stable over time. Evidence for the role of the proposed PAOs and GAOs in EBPR varies and is critically assessed, in light of their calculated amplicon abundances, to indicate which of these are important in full-scale systems. Bacteria from the genus Tetrasphaera were the most abundant of the PAOs. The “Candidatus Accumulibacter” PAOs were in much lower abundance and appear to be biased by the amplicon-based method applied. The genera Dechloromonas, Microlunatus, and Tessaracoccus were identified as abundant putative PAO that require further research attention. Interestingly, the actinobacterial Micropruina and sbr-gs28 phylotypes were among the most abundant of the putative GAOs. Members of the genera Defluviicoccus, Propionivibrio, the family Competibacteraceae, and the spb280 group were also relatively abundant in some plants. Despite observed high abundances of GAOs (periodically exceeding 20% of the amplicon reads, P removal performance was maintained, indicating that these organisms

  6. Biological assessment and streambed-sediment chemistry of streams in the Indianapolis metropolitan area, Indiana, 2003–2008

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voelker, David C.

    2012-01-01

    During 2003–2008, the U.S. Geological Survey sampled 13 sites in the Indianapolis metropolitan area in Indiana for benthic invertebrates, fish communities, and streambed-sediment chemistry. Data from seven White River sites and six tributary sites complement surface-water chemistry data collected by the Indianapolis Department of Public Works. The information is being used to assess changes in water quality in conjunction with the City's programs to reduce combined sewer overflows and other point and nonpoint sources of pollution in the Indianapolis area. During the study, 233 benthic-invertebrate taxa were identified from which the Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera, and Trichoptera (EPT) Index, the Hilsenhoff Biotic Index (HBI), and the Invertebrate Community Index (ICI) were calculated. EPT index scores ranged from 2 to 16 on the White River and from 2 to 17 on the tributaries. EPT index scores indicate that these pollution-intolerant taxa are more prevalent upstream from and away from the combined-sewer areas of Indianapolis. HBI scores from sites on the White River ranged from 4.67 (good) to 9.55 (very poor), whereas on the tributaries, scores ranged from 4.21 (very good) to 8.14 (poor). Lower HBI scores suggest that less organic pollution was present and, like the EPT scores, indicate better conditions where combined-sewer overflows (CSOs) are not present. Similarly, ICI scores indicated better conditions upstream from the CSO outfalls on the White River. White River scores ranged from 12 to 46, where higher ICI scores indicate better conditions in the benthic-invertebrate community. ICI scores at the tributary sites ranged from 12 to 52, with the highest scores on streams without CSOs.

  7. Mathematical biology

    CERN Document Server

    Murray, James D

    1993-01-01

    The book is a textbook (with many exercises) giving an in-depth account of the practical use of mathematical modelling in the biomedical sciences. The mathematical level required is generally not high and the emphasis is on what is required to solve the real biological problem. The subject matter is drawn, e.g. from population biology, reaction kinetics, biological oscillators and switches, Belousov-Zhabotinskii reaction, reaction-diffusion theory, biological wave phenomena, central pattern generators, neural models, spread of epidemics, mechanochemical theory of biological pattern formation and importance in evolution. Most of the models are based on real biological problems and the predictions and explanations offered as a direct result of mathematical analysis of the models are important aspects of the book. The aim is to provide a thorough training in practical mathematical biology and to show how exciting and novel mathematical challenges arise from a genuine interdisciplinary involvement with the biosci...

  8. A novel hybrid tobacco product that delivers a tobacco flavour note with vapour aerosol (Part 2): In vitro biological assessment and comparison with different tobacco-heating products.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breheny, Damien; Adamson, Jason; Azzopardi, David; Baxter, Andrew; Bishop, Emma; Carr, Tony; Crooks, Ian; Hewitt, Katherine; Jaunky, Tomasz; Larard, Sophie; Lowe, Frazer; Oke, Oluwatobiloba; Taylor, Mark; Santopietro, Simone; Thorne, David; Zainuddin, Benjamin; Gaça, Marianna; Liu, Chuan; Murphy, James; Proctor, Christopher

    2017-08-01

    This study assessed the toxicological and biological responses of aerosols from a novel hybrid tobacco product. Toxicological responses from the hybrid tobacco product were compared to those from a commercially available Tobacco Heating Product (c-THP), a prototype THP (p-THP) and a 3R4F reference cigarette, using in vitro test methods which were outlined as part of a framework to substantiate the risk reduction potential of novel tobacco and nicotine products. Exposure matrices used included total particulate matter (TPM), whole aerosol (WA), and aqueous aerosol extracts (AqE) obtained after machine-puffing the test products under the Health Canada Intense smoking regime. Levels of carbonyls and nicotine in these matrices were measured to understand the aerosol dosimetry of the products. The hybrid tobacco product tested negative across the in vitro assays including mutagenicity, genotoxicity, cytotoxicity, tumour promotion, oxidative stress and endothelial dysfunction. All the THPs tested demonstrated significantly reduced responses in these in vitro assays when compared to 3R4F. The findings suggest these products have the potential for reduced health risks. Further pre-clinical and clinical assessments are required to substantiate the risk reduction of these novel products at individual and population levels. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  9. Biological assessment of aquaculture effects on effluent-receiving streams in Ghana using structural and functional composition of fish and macroinvertebrate assemblages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ansah, Yaw Boamah; Frimpong, Emmanuel A; Amisah, Stephen

    2012-07-01

    Biological assessment of aquatic ecosystems is widely employed as an alternative or complement to chemical and toxicity testing due to numerous advantages of using biota to determine ecosystem condition. These advantages, especially to developing countries, include the relatively low cost and technical requirements. This study was conducted to determine the biological impacts of aquaculture operations on effluent-receiving streams in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. We collected water, fish and benthic macroinvertebrate samples from 12 aquaculture effluent-receiving streams upstream and downstream of fish farms and 12 reference streams between May and August of 2009, and then calculated structural and functional metrics for biotic assemblages. Fish species with non-guarding mode of reproduction were more abundant in reference streams than downstream (P = 0.0214) and upstream (P = 0.0251), and sand-detritus spawning fish were less predominant in reference stream than upstream (P = 0.0222) and marginally less in downstream locations (P = 0.0539). A possible subsidy-stress response of macroinvertebrate family richness and abundance was also observed, with nutrient (nitrogen) augmentation from aquaculture and other farming activities likely. Generally, there were no, or only marginal differences among locations downstream and upstream of fish farms and in reference streams in terms of several other biotic metrics considered. Therefore, the scale of impact in the future will depend not only on the management of nutrient augmentation from pond effluents, but also on the consideration of nutrient discharges from other industries like fruit and vegetable farming within the study area.

  10. Assessment of multi-chemical pollution in aquatic ecosystems using toxic units: compound prioritization, mixture characterization and relationships with biological descriptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ginebreda, Antoni; Kuzmanovic, Maja; Guasch, Helena; de Alda, Miren López; López-Doval, Julio C; Muñoz, Isabel; Ricart, Marta; Romaní, Anna M; Sabater, Sergi; Barceló, Damià

    2014-01-15

    Chemical pollution is typically characterized by exposure to multiple rather than to single or a limited number of compounds. Parent compounds, transformation products and other non-targeted compounds yield mixtures whose composition can only be partially identified by monitoring, while a substantial proportion remains unknown. In this context, risk assessment based on the application of additive ecotoxicity models, such as concentration addition (CA), is rendered somewhat misleading. Here, we show that ecotoxicity risk information can be better understood upon consideration of the probabilistic distribution of risk among the different compounds. Toxic units of the compounds identified in a sample fit a lognormal probability distribution. The parameters characterizing this distribution (mean and standard deviation) provide information which can be tentatively interpreted as a measure of the toxic load and its apportionment among the constituents in the mixture (here interpreted as mixture complexity). Furthermore, they provide information for compound prioritization tailored to each site and enable prediction of some of the functional and structural biological variables associated with the receiving ecosystem. The proposed approach was tested in the Llobregat River basin (NE Spain) using exposure and toxicity data (algae and Daphnia) corresponding to 29 pharmaceuticals and 22 pesticides, and 5 structural and functional biological descriptors related to benthic macroinvertebrates (diversity, biomass) and biofilm metrics (diatom quality, chlorophyll-a content and photosynthetic capacity). Aggregated toxic units based on Daphnia and algae bioassays provided a good indication of the pollution pattern of the Llobregat River basin. Relative contribution of pesticides and pharmaceuticals to total toxic load was variable and highly site dependent, the latter group tending to increase its contribution in urban areas. Contaminated sites' toxic load was typically dominated by

  11. Generation and biological assessment of recombinant avian metapneumovirus subgroup C (aMPV-C) viruses containing different length of the G gene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Qingzhong; Estevez, Carlos; Song, Minxun; Kapczynski, Darrell; Zsak, Laszlo

    2010-02-01

    Genetic variation in length of the G gene among different avian metapneumovirus subgroup C (aMPV-C) isolates has been reported. However, its biological significance in virus replication, pathogenicity and immunity is unknown. In this study, we developed a reverse genetics system for aMPV-C and generated two Colorado (CO) strain-based recombinant viruses containing either the full-length G gene derived from a Canadian goose isolate or a C-terminally truncated G gene of the CO strain. The truncated short G (sG) gene encoded 252 amino acids (aa), which is 333 aa shorter than the full-length G (585 aa). The biological properties of these two recombinant G variants were assessed in Vero cells and in specific-pathogen-free (SPF) turkeys. In Vero cells, the short G variant displayed a similar level of growth dynamics and virus titers as the parental aMPV-CO strain, whereas the full-length G variant replicated less efficiently than the sG variant during the first 72 h post-infection. Both of the G variants induced typical cytopathic effects (CPE) that were indistinguishable from those seen with the parental aMPV-CO infection. In SPF turkeys, both of the G variants were attenuated and caused little or no disease signs, but the full-length G variant appeared to grow more readily in tracheal tissue than the sG variant during the first 5 days post-infection. Both G variants were immunogenic and induced a slightly different level of antibody response. These results demonstrated that the large portion (333 aa) of the extracellular domain of the viral attachment protein is not essential for virus viability in vitro and in vivo, but may play a role in enhancing virus attachment specificity and immunity in a natural host. (c) 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. The Biology of the Triatomine Bugs Native to South Central Texas and Assessment of the Risk They Pose for Autochthonous Chagas Disease Exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wozniak, Edward J; Lawrence, Gena; Gorchakov, Rodion; Alamgir, Hasanat; Dotson, Ellen; Sissel, Blake; Sarkar, Sahotra; Murray, Kristy O

    2015-10-01

    Triatomine bugs are a group of hematophagous arthropods that can serve as biological vectors for Trypanosoma cruzi , the etiological agent of American trypanosomiasis (Chagas disease). Because of differences in the biology and feeding habits among triatomine species, some are more likely than others to be involved in zoonotic and/or human-to-human transmission cycles of T. cruzi . In an attempt to assess the risk for Chagas disease exposure in south-central Texas, human habitations across Texas Health Service Region 8 (HSR 8) and surrounding counties were surveyed for triatomines to characterize the geographic distribution, species-specific biology, and T. cruzi -infection prevalence better. Between May 2010 and August 2013, a total of 545 triatomines representing all 5 known indigenous species (Triatoma gerstaeckeri, Triatoma indictiva, Triatoma lecticularia, Triatoma sanguisuga, and Triatoma protracta woodi) were collected from 59 sites across the region. Triatoma gerstaeckeri was the species most commonly found in domestic and peridomestic ecotopes across Texas HSR 8, representing over 80% of the triatomines collected. Adult T. gerstaeckeri exhibited a seasonal dispersal pattern that began in late April, peaked in mid-May, and then continued into August. On homes with available crevices in the exterior walls, adult T. gerstaeckeri were observed emerging from or entering these protective microhabitats, suggesting possible opportunistic colonization of some exterior walls compartments. Laboratory testing of triatomine hindgut contents for T. cruzi by PCR demonstrated the adult T. gerstaeckeri-infection prevalence across Texas HSR 8 to be 64%. Monitoring peridomestic adult T. gerstaeckeri over the seasonal dispersal peak demonstrated statistically significant increases in both their T. cruzi -infection prevalence (P < 0.01) and tendency to invade human dwellings (P < 0.01) in the later aspect of the emergence peak. In addition to the adult insects, variably sized

  13. The impact of breast cancer biological subtyping on tumor size assessment by ultrasound and mammography - a retrospective multicenter cohort study of 6543 primary breast cancer patients

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stein, Roland Gregor; Wollschläger, Daniel; Kreienberg, Rolf; Janni, Wolfgang; Wischnewsky, Manfred; Diessner, Joachim; Stüber, Tanja; Bartmann, Catharina; Krockenberger, Mathias; Wischhusen, Jörg; Wöckel, Achim; Blettner, Maria; Schwentner, Lukas

    2016-01-01

    Mammography and ultrasound are the gold standard imaging techniques for preoperative assessment and for monitoring the efficacy of neoadjuvant chemotherapy in breast cancer. Maximum accuracy in predicting pathological tumor size non-invasively is critical for individualized therapy and surgical planning. We therefore aimed to assess the accuracy of tumor size measurement by ultrasound and mammography in a multicentered health services research study. We retrospectively analyzed data from 6543 patients with unifocal, unilateral primary breast cancer. The maximum tumor diameter was measured by ultrasound and/or mammographic imaging. All measurements were compared to final tumor diameter determined by postoperative histopathological examination. We compared the precision of each imaging method across different patient subgroups as well as the method-specific accuracy in each patient subgroup. Overall, the correlation with histology was 0.61 for mammography and 0.60 for ultrasound. Both correlations were higher in pT2 cancers than in pT1 and pT3. Ultrasound as well as mammography revealed a significantly higher correlation with histology in invasive ductal compared to lobular cancers (p < 0.01). For invasive lobular cancers, the mammography showed better correlation with histology than ultrasound (p = 0.01), whereas there was no such advantage for invasive ductal cancers. Ultrasound was significantly superior for HR negative cancers (p < 0.001). HER2/neu positive cancers were also more precisely assessed by ultrasound (p < 0.001). The size of HER2/neu negative cancers could be more accurately predicted by mammography (p < 0.001). This multicentered health services research approach demonstrates that predicting tumor size by mammography and ultrasound provides accurate results. Biological tumor features do, however, affect the diagnostic precision

  14. Biological therapeutics

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Greenstein, Ben; Brook, Daniel A

    2011-01-01

    This introductory textbook covers all the main categories of biological medicines, including vaccines, hormonal preparations, drugs for rheumatoid arthritis and other connective tissue diseases, drugs...

  15. Giant Constrictors: Biological and Management Profiles and an Establishment Risk Assessment for Nine Large Species of Pythons, Anacondas, and the Boa Constrictor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, Robert N.; Rodda, Gordon H.

    2009-01-01

    Giant Constrictors: Biological and Management Profiles and an Establishment Risk Assessment for Nine Large Species of Pythons, Anacondas, and the Boa Constrictor, estimates the ecological risks associated with colonization of the United States by nine large constrictors. The nine include the world's four largest snake species (Green Anaconda, Eunectes murinus; Indian or Burmese Python, Python molurus; Northern African Python, Python sebae; and Reticulated Python, Broghammerus reticulatus), the Boa Constrictor (Boa constrictor), and four species that are ecologically or visually similar to one of the above (Southern African Python, Python natalensis; Yellow Anaconda, Eunectes notaeus; DeSchauensee's Anaconda, Eunectes deschauenseei; and Beni Anaconda, Eunectes beniensis). At present, the only probable pathway by which these species would become established in the United States is the pet trade. Although importation for the pet trade involves some risk that these animals could become established as exotic or invasive species, it does not guarantee such establishment. Federal regulators have the task of appraising the importation risks and balancing those risks against economic, social, and ecological benefits associated with the importation. The risk assessment quantifies only the ecological risks, recognizing that ecosystem processes are complex and only poorly understood. The risk assessment enumerates the types of economic impacts that may be experienced, but leaves quantification of economic costs to subsequent studies. Primary factors considered in judging the risk of establishment were: (1) history of establishment in other countries, (2) number of each species in commerce, (3) suitability of U.S. climates for each species, and (4) natural history traits, such as reproductive rate and dispersal ability, that influence the probability of establishment, spread, and impact. In addition, the risk assessment reviews all management tools for control of invasive giant

  16. Is synthetic biology mechanical biology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holm, Sune

    2015-12-01

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

  17. Towards a biological geriatric assessment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  18. Computational biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hartmann, Lars Røeboe; Jones, Neil; Simonsen, Jakob Grue

    2011-01-01

    Computation via biological devices has been the subject of close scrutiny since von Neumann’s early work some 60 years ago. In spite of the many relevant works in this field, the notion of programming biological devices seems to be, at best, ill-defined. While many devices are claimed or proved t...

  19. Mesoscopic biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    In this paper we present a qualitative outlook of mesoscopic biology where the typical length scale is of the order of nanometers and the energy scales comparable to thermal energy. Novel biomolecular machines, governed by coded information at the level of DNA and proteins, operate at these length scales in biological ...

  20. Using biological and physico-chemical test methods to assess the role of concrete mixture design in resistance to microbially induced corrosion

    Science.gov (United States)

    House, Mitchell Wayne

    Concrete is the most widely used material for construction of wastewater collection, storage, and treatment infrastructure. The chemical and physical characteristics of hydrated portland cement make it susceptible to degradation under highly acidic conditions. As a result, some concrete wastewater infrastructure may be susceptible to a multi-stage degradation process known as microbially induced corrosion, or MIC. MIC begins with the production of aqueous hydrogen sulfide (H2S(aq)) by anaerobic sulfate reducing bacteria present below the waterline. H2S(aq) partitions to the gas phase where it is oxidized to sulfuric acid by the aerobic sulfur oxidizing bacteria Thiobacillus that resides on concrete surfaces above the waterline. Sulfuric acid then attacks the cement paste portion of the concrete matrix through decalcification of calcium hydroxide and calcium silica hydrate coupled with the formation of expansive corrosion products. The attack proceeds inward resulting in reduced service life and potential failure of the concrete structure. There are several challenges associated with assessing a concrete's susceptibility to MIC. First, no standard laboratory tests exist to assess concrete resistance to MIC. Straightforward reproduction of MIC in the laboratory is complicated by the use of microorganisms and hydrogen sulfide gas. Physico-chemical tests simulating MIC by immersing concrete specimens in sulfuric acid offer a convenient alternative, but do not accurately capture the damage mechanisms associated with biological corrosion. Comparison of results between research studies is difficult due to discrepancies that can arise in experimental methods even if current ASTM standards are followed. This thesis presents two experimental methods to evaluate concrete resistance to MIC: one biological and one physico-chemical. Efforts are made to address the critical aspects of each testing method currently absent in the literature. The first method presented is a new test

  1. A review of biological processes within oceanic water columns relevant to the assessment of the safety of disposal of waste, notably radioactive isotopes on or within the sea bed

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Angel, M.V.

    1985-01-01

    Pelagic biological processes and their connotations in the assessment of possible dispersal mechanisms of contaminants released on the deep oceanic seabed are reviewed. Biological gradients tend to be from the surface down so the search is for processes which run counter to these general gradients. Observed profiles of standing crop of both plankton and micronekton show that below 2000 m biological activity would have to be exceptionally dynamic to have an influence that will even approach within an order of magnitude of the dispersive effect of physical mixing. Examination of all forms of known migration mechanisms fails to reveal such dynamic activity. Nor have any critical pathways been identified within the present or foreseeable pattern of exploitation of the oceans. However, a major gap in knowledge is whether the pattern of these biological processes changes substantially in the region of continental slopes. (author)

  2. The status of and future research into Myalgic Encephalomyelitis and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: the need of accurate diagnosis, objective assessment, and acknowledging biological and clinical subgroups

    Science.gov (United States)

    Twisk, Frank N. M.

    2014-01-01

    Although Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) are used interchangeably, the diagnostic criteria define two distinct clinical entities. Cognitive impairment, (muscle) weakness, circulatory disturbances, marked variability of symptoms, and, above all, post-exertional malaise: a long-lasting increase of symptoms after a minor exertion, are distinctive symptoms of ME. This latter phenomenon separates ME, a neuro-immune illness, from chronic fatigue (syndrome), other disorders and deconditioning. The introduction of the label, but more importantly the diagnostic criteria for CFS have generated much confusion, mostly because chronic fatigue is a subjective and ambiguous notion. CFS was redefined in 1994 into unexplained (persistent or relapsing) chronic fatigue, accompanied by at least four out of eight symptoms, e.g., headaches and unrefreshing sleep. Most of the research into ME and/or CFS in the last decades was based upon the multivalent CFS criteria, which define a heterogeneous patient group. Due to the fact that fatigue and other symptoms are non-discriminative, subjective experiences, research has been hampered. Various authors have questioned the physiological nature of the symptoms and qualified ME/CFS as somatization. However, various typical symptoms can be assessed objectively using standardized methods. Despite subjective and unclear criteria and measures, research has observed specific abnormalities in ME/CFS repetitively, e.g., immunological abnormalities, oxidative and nitrosative stress, neurological anomalies, circulatory deficits and mitochondrial dysfunction. However, to improve future research standards and patient care, it is crucial that patients with post-exertional malaise (ME) and patients without this odd phenomenon are acknowledged as separate clinical entities that the diagnosis of ME and CFS in research and clinical practice is based upon accurate criteria and an objective assessment of characteristic symptoms

  3. A preliminary assessment of the effectiveness of the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor for protecting potential Baird's tapir (Tapirus bairdii) habitat in Southern Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendoza, Eduardo; Fuller, Trevon L; Thomassen, Henri A; Buermann, Wolfgang; Ramírez-Mejía, Diana; Smith, Thomas B

    2013-03-01

    Baird's tapir (Tapirus bairdii) is one of the most emblematic mammals of Mesoamerica, but like other large-bodied animals, it is facing an increasing risk of extinction due primarily to habitat loss. Mexico's 'ortion of the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor (MBC-M) is located in one of the main strongholds for Bairds tapir. To assess the MBC-M's effectiveness for tapir conservation, we estimated the distribution of the species' potential habitat by applying 2 modelling approaches (random forest and Maxent) to a set of uncorrelated environmental variables and a 157-point presence dataset. We calculated the extent of tapir habitat in within the MBC-M and modelled new corridors and conservation areas, which we compared to the MBC-M. Moreover, we assessed deforestation patterns in the region. Twenty-seven percent of highly suitable tapir habitat occurred in protected areas, 15% in corridors and 58.3% was outside the MBC-M and associated reserves. The spatial configuration of the MBC-M was partially concordant with the modelled set of conservation areas and corridors. The main dissimilarity was that the modelled corridors traversed forests in Belize and Guatemala to connect conservation areas. Analyses of deforestation since 1993 and human population density in the vicinity of the MBC-M indicated that future conservation efforts should give particular attention to the Montes Azules-El Triunfo Corridor due to greater habitat threat. The MBC-M has a great potential to play a prominent role in the conservation of tapir habitat but there is an urgent need to implement management plans that reinforce and complement this conservation initiative. © 2012 Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd, ISZS and IOZ/CAS.

  4. Removal of Antibiotics in Biological Wastewater Treatment Systems-A Critical Assessment Using the Activated Sludge Modeling Framework for Xenobiotics (ASM-X).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polesel, Fabio; Andersen, Henrik R; Trapp, Stefan; Plósz, Benedek Gy

    2016-10-04

    Many scientific studies present removal efficiencies for pharmaceuticals in laboratory-, pilot-, and full-scale wastewater treatment plants, based on observations that may be impacted by theoretical and methodological approaches used. In this Critical Review, we evaluated factors influencing observed removal efficiencies of three antibiotics (sulfamethoxazole, ciprofloxacin, tetracycline) in pilot- and full-scale biological treatment systems. Factors assessed include (i) retransformation to parent pharmaceuticals from e.g., conjugated metabolites and analogues, (ii) solid retention time (SRT), (iii) fractions sorbed onto solids, and (iv) dynamics in influent and effluent loading. A recently developed methodology was used, relying on the comparison of removal efficiency predictions (obtained with the Activated Sludge Model for Xenobiotics (ASM-X)) with representative measured data from literature. By applying this methodology, we demonstrated that (a) the elimination of sulfamethoxazole may be significantly underestimated when not considering retransformation from conjugated metabolites, depending on the type (urban or hospital) and size of upstream catchments; (b) operation at extended SRT may enhance antibiotic removal, as shown for sulfamethoxazole; (c) not accounting for fractions sorbed in influent and effluent solids may cause slight underestimation of ciprofloxacin removal efficiency. Using tetracycline as example substance, we ultimately evaluated implications of effluent dynamics and retransformation on environmental exposure and risk prediction.

  5. The use of wavelength-selective plastic cladding materials in horticulture: understanding of crop and fungal responses through the assessment of biological spectral weighting functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Nigel D; Jacobson, Rob J; Taylor, Anna; Wargent, Jason J; Moore, Jason P

    2005-01-01

    Plant responses to light spectral quality can be exploited to deliver a range of agronomically desirable end points in protected crops. This can be achieved using plastics with specific spectral properties as crop covers. We have studied the responses of a range of crops to plastics that have either (a) increased transmission of UV compared with standard horticultural covers, (b) decreased transmission of UV or (c) increased the ratio of red (R) : far-red (FR) radiation. Both the UV-transparent and R : FR increasing films reduced leaf area and biomass, offering potential alternatives to chemical growth regulators. The UV-opaque film increased growth, but while this may be useful in some crops, there were trade-offs with elements of quality, such as pigmentation and taste. UV manipulation may also influence disease control. Increasing UV inhibited not only the pathogenic fungus Botrytis cinerea but also the disease biocontrol agent Trichoderma harzianum. Unlike B. cinerea, T. harzianum was highly sensitive to UV-A radiation. These fungal responses and those for plant growth in the growth room and the field under different plastics are analyzed in terms of alternative biological spectral weighting functions (BSWF). The role of BSWF in assessing general patterns of response to UV modification in horticulture is also discussed.

  6. Chemical and biological assessment of Cd-polluted sediment for land use: The effect of stabilization using chitosan-coated zeolite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Jia; Zeng, Guangming

    2018-04-15

    Disposal of dredged sediment contaminated with heavy metals on site or in landfills inevitably causes leaching of metals that generate new environmental problems. In this study, we investigated the effectiveness of stabilizing heavy metal Cd in sediment taken from Dongting Lake, China, using a chitosan-coated zeolite, and assessed the feasibility of reusing the stabilized sediment in river bank soil based on chemical and biological analyses. Results showed that the addition of chitosan-coated zeolite significantly reduced acid-exchangeable Cd by 8% in the dredged sediment and 7% in a sediment-soil mixture. Cadmium leachability was greatly reduced in the amended sediment or sediment-soil mixture. Toxicity bioassay using Eisenia fetida showed the mortality rate of worms reduced by 16% in sediment-soil mixture with a Cd concentration of 550 mg/kg and by 17% under a Cd concentration of 250 mg/kg, both with the addition of modified zeolite. Moreover, assimilation of Cd in the earthworms was decreased by a maximum of 36 mg/kg in the sediment-soil mixture with zeolite amendment. These results indicate that the reuse of Cd-contaminated sediment following chitosan-coated zeolite modification is a feasible option for treating the dredged sediment, and could thus benefit both aquatic and terrestrial systems. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-08-25

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

  8. The occurrence and spatial-temporal distribution of tetrabromobisphenol A in the coastal intertidal zone of Qingdao in China, with a focus on toxicity assessment by biological monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Wen-Jing; Zhu, Li-Yan; Jiang, Tian-Tian; Han, Cui

    2017-10-01

    Tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) is a widely used flame retardant that has increasingly been found as contaminant in aquatic environments. The main goal of this study was to evaluate the pollution level of TBBPA at six locations around Qingdao and assess its biotoxicity through a two-generation toxicity study looking at a copepod species. In the chemical monitoring, the concentration of TBBPA in seawater samples ranged from nd to 1.8 μg/L. Next, the biological indicator monitoring used 1.8 μg/L as the middle exposure concentration to perform quantitative evaluations of the influence of TBBPA on the demographic traits of Pseudodiaptomus inopinus. The results showed that copepods became more sensitive to TBBPA exposure even in environmental concentration (1.8 μg/L) as the generations developed. The detrimental effects of TBBPA further increased naupliar mortality and impaired copepodite development to adulthood. This study demonstrated that the water pollution condition of TBBPA was measured at all 6 sampling locations of Qingdao. Therefore, the present results call for a decreased discharge of TBBPA into the marine environment to avoid impairing copepod reproduction and development. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Review on Invasive Tree of Heaven (Ailanthus altissima (Mill.) Swingle) Conflicting Values: Assessment of Its Ecosystem Services and Potential Biological Threat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sladonja, Barbara; Sušek, Marta; Guillermic, Julia

    2015-10-01

    Globally, invasions by alien plants are rapidly increasing in extent and severity, leading to large-scale ecosystem degradation. One of the most widespread invasive alien plant species in Europe and North America, Tree of Heaven (Ailanthus altissima (Mill.) Swingle) was introduced intentionally for use as an ornamental plant in the 18th century. Since then, it has spread and is now frequently found in a number of countries. Today, Tree of Heaven is considered one of the worst invasive plant species in Europe and is also listed as invasive in North America and many other countries. Millennium Ecosystem Assessment is one of many systems trying to list and categorize biological services to humans and to provide a tool for identifying services delivered by natural ecosystems. Invasive species have generally caused degradation of the services, have a major impact on the environment, and are threatening biodiversity and reducing overall species abundance and diversity. On the other hand, some invasive species can provide services useful to human well-being. In the present review A. altissima impacts on ecosystems are identified and positive influences on some ecosystem services are weighed against the negative effects on the environment and human health. The aim of the present review is to resume the general knowledge of A. altissima, group available references on distribution and ecology according to countries, compare ecosystem services provided or enhanced by A. altissima presence and the negative effects it causes, identify gaps in current knowledge, and give recommendations for future lines of research.

  10. Biological desulfurisation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arena, B.J. [UOP LLC (United States); Benschop, A.; Janssen, A. [Paques Natural Solutions (Netherlands); Kijlstra, S. [Shell Global Solutions (Netherlands)

    2001-03-01

    This article focuses on the biological THIOPAQ process for removing hydrogen sulphide from refinery gases and recovering elemental sulphur. Details are given of the process which absorbs hydrogen sulphide-containing gas in alkaline solution prior to oxidation of the dissolved sulphur to elemental sulphur in a THIOPAQ aerobic biological reactor, with regeneration of the caustic solution. Sulphur handling options including sulphur wash, the drying of the sulphur cake, and sulphur smelting by pressure liquefaction are described. Agricultural applications of the biologically recovered sulphur, and application of the THIOPAQ process to sulphur recovery are discussed.

  11. Determination of the dose of gamma radiation sterilization for assessment of biological parameters of male Ceratitis capitada (Diptera: Tephritidae), tsl - Vienna 8 strain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rocha, Aline Cristina Pereira da

    2011-01-01

    The Vienna-8, tsl (temperature sensitive lethal) strain of Ceratitis capitata, by presenting mutations that facilitate the mass rearing and release only of sterile males in the field, has been used in (Sterile Insect Technique) programmes. The objective of this study was to determine the radiation dose that provides the highest level of sterility for Vienna-8, tsl males assessing their biological parameters that indicate the quality of sterile males to be released. Brown pupae (males) of the tsl strain were obtained from the mass rearing of the Food Irradiation and Radio entomology laboratory of CENA/USP, and they were irradiated (with gamma radiation - 60 Co) 24 hours before the emergence at rates of 0, 30, 60, 90 and 120 Gy. The determination of the sterilizing dose was based on fertility of sexually mature females of the bisexual strain and not irradiated, mated with males of different treatments. Eggs were collected daily during 6 days, were counted and it was possible to estimate fecundity, and assess the hatching rate. The emergence and flight ability were determined by following the protocol of quality control manual for FAO/IAEA/USDA (2003). To assess the longevity under nutritional stress, the insects were kept a period of 48 h after emergence in the absence of water and food, and after this period, mortality was recorded. The size of the testes (left and right) was obtained by dissecting irradiated and non-irradiated males at the eighth day of life, and measure the testes in an ocular micrometer, considering the maximum length and width of each sample. To determine the sperm number was necessary to dissect the males and break their testicles. No difference was observed in emergence rate, flight ability and longevity of irradiated and non-irradiated males, nor in the fecundity of females mated with males of different treatments. The sterilizing dose that resulted in lower fertility of females was 120 Gy, with 1.5% hatching. Considering the parameters of

  12. Systems Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    IAS Admin

    study and understand the function of biological systems, particu- larly, the response of such .... understand the organisation and behaviour of prokaryotic sys- tems. ... relationship of the structure of a target molecule to its ability to bind a certain ...

  13. Increasing URM Undergraduate Student Success through Assessment-Driven Interventions: A Multiyear Study Using Freshman-Level General Biology as a Model System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carmichael, Mary C.; St. Clair, Candace; Edwards, Andrea M.; Barrett, Peter; McFerrin, Harris; Davenport, Ian; Awad, Mohamed; Kundu, Anup; Ireland, Shubha Kale

    2016-01-01

    Xavier University of Louisiana leads the nation in awarding BS degrees in the biological sciences to African-American students. In this multiyear study with ~5500 participants, data-driven interventions were adopted to improve student academic performance in a freshman-level general biology course. The three hour-long exams were common and…

  14. Compilation and assessment of microwave bioeffects. Final report. A selective review of the literature on biological effects of microwaves in relation to the satellite power system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Justesen, D. R.; Ragan, H. A.; Rogers, L. E.; Guy, A. W.; Hjeresen, D. L.; Hinds, W. T.

    1978-05-01

    Potential biological and ecological problems are the focus of a review of the world's scientific literature on biological effects of microwave radiation. The emphasis is on recently reported data and on the 2450-MHz continuous-wave (CW) radiation that is envisioned for a Satellite Power System (SPS).

  15. Original Research doi:10.4102/http://www.indieskriflig.org.za ids.v48i2.722 An exploration of synthetic biology: A preliminary Christian ethical assessment of the advantages and disadvantages of synthetic biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Riaan A.L. Rheeder

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available On 20 May 2010, the Venter Institute in America announced that they have fully synthesised the genome of the organism Mycoplasma mycoides whilst in vitro by using a computer connected to a machine that synthesises genes. Thereafter, the genome was placed back into the casing of another organism (Mycoplasma capricolum and it was reported that the synthesised organism and the genome functioned normally. This synthesised organism was reconstructed to function as a minute little factory with the aim of producing and secreting fuel and medicine − something that is not the natural function of this organism. There are certain potential dangers inherent in this kind of technology. Scientists fear that this technology may contaminate or infect humans, animals or the environment, and that it can as such be extremely harmful, or even lead to the destruction of humans. Other scientists are concerned that terrorists can use this technology to kill innocent citizens. Some ethicists are of the opinion that the consequences of synthetic biology is currently unpredictable and that it is therefore risky. In opposition to the potential dangers, one has to mention that synthetic biology indeed can result in far-reaching positive outcomes such as the manufacturing of biofuel and medication. Most scientists and ethicists are of the opinion that the potential dangers involved in synthetic biology should be evaluated in light of the fact that genetic manipulation has not caused any biological devastation over the last 30 years. From a Christian point of departure, the opinion is currently that synthetic biology is not an irresponsible science and technology.

  16. A timeless biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tozzi, Arturo; Peters, James F; Chafin, Clifford; De Falco, Domenico; Torday, John S

    2018-05-01

    Contrary to claims that physics is timeless while biology is time-dependent, we take the opposite standpoint: physical systems' dynamics are constrained by the arrow of time, while living assemblies are time-independent. Indeed, the concepts of "constraints" and "displacements" shed new light on the role of continuous time flow in life evolution, allowing us to sketch a physical gauge theory for biological systems in long timescales. In the very short timescales of biological systems' individual lives, time looks like "frozen" and "fixed", so that the second law of thermodynamics is momentarily wrecked. The global symmetries (standing for biological constrained trajectories, i.e. the energetic gradient flows dictated by the second law of thermodynamics in long timescales) are broken by local "displacements" where time is held constant, i.e., modifications occurring in living systems. Such displacements stand for brief local forces, able to temporarily "break" the cosmic increase in entropy. The force able to restore the symmetries (called "gauge field") stands for the very long timescales of biological evolution. Therefore, at the very low speeds of life evolution, time is no longer one of the four phase space coordinates of a spacetime Universe: it becomes just a gauge field superimposed to three-dimensional biological systems. We discuss the implications in biology: when assessing living beings, the underrated role of isolated "spatial" modifications needs to be emphasized, living apart the evolutionary role of time. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Quantitative complete tooth variation among east Asians and Native Americans: developmental biology as a tool for the assessment of human divergence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shields, E D

    1996-01-01

    The quantification of total tooth structure derived from X-rays of Vietnamese, Southern Chinese, Mongolians, Western Eskimos, and Peruvian pre-Inca (Huari Empire) populations was used to examine dental divergence and the morphogenetics of change. Multivariate derived distances between the samples helped identify a quasicontinuous web of ethnic groups with two binary clusters ensconced within the web. One cluster was composed of Mongolians, Western Eskimos, and pre-Inca, and the other group consisted of the Southern Chinese and Vietnamese. Mongolians entered the quasicontinuum from a divergent angle (externally influenced) from that of the Southeast Asians. The Chinese and pre-Inca formed the polar samples of the distance superstructure. The pre-Inca sample was the most isolated, its closest neighbor being the Western Eskimos. Univariate and multivariate analyses suggested that the pre-Inca, whose ancestors arrived in America perhaps approximately 30,000 years ago, was the least derived sample. Clearly, microevolutionary change occurred among the samples, but the dental phenotype was resistant to environmental developmental perturbations. An assessment of dental divergence and developmental biology suggested that the overall dental phenotype is a complex multigenic morphological character, and that the observed variation evolved through total genomic drift. The quantified dental phenotype is greater than its highly multigenic algorithm and its development homeostasis is tightly controlled, or canalized, by the deterministic organization of a complex nonlinear epigenetic milieu. The overall dental phenotype quantified here was selectively neutral and a good character to help reconstruct the sequence of human evolution, but if the outlying homeostatic threshold was or will be exceeded in antecedents and descendants, respectively, evolutionary saltation occurs.

  18. Biological assessment of the effects of construction and operation of a depleted uranium hexafluoride conversion facility at the Paducah, Kentucky, site.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Van Lonkhuyzen, R.

    2005-09-09

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Depleted Uranium Hexafluoride (DUF{sub 6}) Management Program evaluated alternatives for managing its inventory of DUF{sub 6} and issued the ''Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement for Alternative Strategies for the Long-Term Management and Use of Depleted Uranium Hexafluoride'' (DUF{sub 6} PEIS) in April 1999 (DOE 1999). The DUF{sub 6} inventory is stored in cylinders at three DOE sites: Paducah, Kentucky; Portsmouth, Ohio; and East Tennessee Technology Park (ETTP), near Oak Ridge, Tennessee. In the Record of Decision for the DUF{sub 6} PEIS, DOE stated its decision to promptly convert the DUF6 inventory to a more stable chemical form. Subsequently, the U.S. Congress passed, and the President signed, the ''2002 Supplemental Appropriations Act for Further Recovery from and Response to Terrorist Attacks on the United States'' (Public Law No. 107-206). This law stipulated in part that, within 30 days of enactment, DOE must award a contract for the design, construction, and operation of a DUF{sub 6} conversion plant at the Department's Paducah, Kentucky, and Portsmouth, Ohio, sites, and for the shipment of DUF{sub 6} cylinders stored at ETTP to the Portsmouth site for conversion. This biological assessment (BA) has been prepared by DOE, pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) and the Endangered Species Act of 1974, to evaluate potential impacts to federally listed species from the construction and operation of a conversion facility at the DOE Paducah site.

  19. “Biotecnological War” - A Conceptual And Perceptual Assessment Tool For Teaching Biotechnology And Protein Chemistry For Undergraduate Students In Biological Sciences.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. R. C. Cruz et al.

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available "Biotecnological War" board game, a conceptual and perceptual assessment tool for biotechnology and protein chemistry teaching for undergraduate students in biological sciences and related areas. It is a proposal initially conceived as an alternative complementary tool for biochemistry teaching of proteins and peptides, challenging students, aiming to review concepts transmitted in classroom, stimulating diverse student’s abilities, such as their creativity, competitiveness and resource management. OBJECTIVES. Correlate biochemistry importance of proteins and peptides with the development of new products. MATERIAL AND METHODS. Firstly, theoretical-practical classes were given with seminars to be presented by the groups, including topics that will be addressed in game. Groups of 5 students, with previously viewed themes drawn a goal to be achieved. There are two drawn goals variations: Academic or Commercial. Board is divided into provinces, which must be bought with an initial resource to complete the goal. Before the beginning each group will have 15 minutes to plan their actions. The objective is to develop the entire objective drawn with appropriate methodology, having at least 1 territory in each province. RESULTS. This game proved to be an excellent tool for complementary evaluation of students, which stimulated teamwork and a strong competitive spirit within classroom, which allowed to analyze students' perception regarding the protein subject and team work. On the other hand, for teacher and students participating in compulsory traineeship program this game demonstrated new ways to approach complex subjects in biochemistry using creativity with the development of new activities such as this board game. CONCLUSION: Overall, students had a good impression of “Biotecnological war” game since it helped to secure and administer the protein and peptides biochemical subject in a competitive and team work way.

  20. Assessing the Feasibility and Risks of Using Wave-Driven Upwelling Pumps to Enhance the Biological Sequestration of Carbon in Open Oceans

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, A.; Bjorkman, K.; Grabowski, E.; Letelier, R. M.; Poulos, S.; Watkins, B.; Karl, D. M.

    2008-12-01

    In 1976, John D. Isaacs proposed to use wave energy to pump cold and nutrient-rich deep water into the sunlit surface layers. The motivation for this endeavor has taken many forms over the years, from energy production to fueling aquaculture to the more recent suggestion that artificial upwelling could be used to stimulate primary productivity and anthropogenic carbon sequestration in oligotrophic regions of the ocean. However, the potential for biological carbon sequestration in response to upwelling will depend on the concentration of nutrients relative to that of dissolved inorganic carbon in the water being upwelled and on the response of the marine microbial assemblage to this nutrient enrichment. In June 2008, we tested a commercially available wave pump in the vicinity of Station ALOHA, north of Oahu, Hawaii in order to assess the logistics of at-sea deployment and the survivability of the equipment in the open ocean. Our engineering test was also designed to evaluate a recently published hypothesis (Karl and Letelier, 2008, Marine Ecology Progress Series) that upwelling of water containing excess phosphate relative to nitrogen compared to the canonical "Redfield" molar ratio of 16N:1P, would generate a two-phased phytoplankton bloom and enhance carbon sequestration. In this presentation, we analyze the results of this field test within the context of pelagic biogeochemical cycles. Furthermore, we discuss the deployment of a 300m wave pump, efforts to sample a biochemical response, the engineering challenges faced and the practical and ethical implications of these results for future experiments aimed at stimulating the growth of phytoplankton in oligotrophic regions.

  1. Are UV photolysis and UV/H2O2 process efficient to treat estrogens in waters? Chemical and biological assessment at pilot scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cédat, Bruno; de Brauer, Christine; Métivier, Hélène; Dumont, Nathalie; Tutundjan, Renaud

    2016-09-01

    In this study, UV based treatments were implemented at pilot scale to assess their ability to remove hormones from treated wastewater, especially with the view to equip small and medium size Wastewater Treatment Plants (WTPs). To this end, the degradation of a mixture of estrogenic hormones (Estrone (E1), β-Estradiol (E2), and 17α-Ethinyl Estradiol (EE2)) in waters by UV photolysis and UV/H2O2 process was investigated in real conditions. A particular attention was paid at designing a well validated laboratory scale pilot in order to optimise oxidant concentrations and UV fluence. A Low pressure lamp (254 nm) was used in a flow through commercial reactor. The effects of water matrices (drinking water and treated wastewater) and H2O2 concentrations (10, 40, and 90 mg/L) on the pilot efficiency were first determined. Only E1 could be partially degraded by UV photolysis whereas hormones were all well removed by UV/H2O2 process in both matrices. The second part of the study focused on a chemical and biological assessment of UV photolysis and UV/H2O2 process (30 and 50 mg/L). Degradation rate constants of hormones as well as changes in estrogenic activity (YES bioassay) and toxicity (Vibrio fischeri) were followed at the same time. UV photolysis could not remove neither estrogens nor estrogenic activity at relevant UV fluence in waters. However 80% of initial estrogenic compounds and estrogenic activity could be removed from treated wastewater by combining UV fluence of 423 and 520 mJ/cm(2) with 50 and 30 mg/L of H2O2, respectively. No high estrogenic or toxic by-products were detected by the two bioassays following UV photolysis or UV/H2O2 process. Operating costs were estimated for a full scale pilot. H2O2 was the major cost. By combining the appropriate concentration of H2O2 and UV fluence, it could be possible to design a cost effective treatment for treating estrogens in small and medium size WTPs. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    KAUST Repository

    Prest, E. I.

    2016-01-06

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

  3. Water pollution biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mason, C.F. [University of Essex, Colchester (United Kingdom). Dept. of Biology

    1996-12-31

    Chapter 4 of this book describes the effects of major types of pollutants on aquatic life. These are: organic pollution, eutrophication, acidification, toxic chemicals, oil, and radioactivity. The review includes an description of some of the methods of assessing the biological impacts of pollution. 50 refs., 8 figs., 3 tabs.

  4. [Biological agents].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amano, Koichi

    2009-03-01

    There are two types of biological agents for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA); monoclonal antibodies and recombinant proteins. Among the latter, etanercept, a recombinant fusion protein of soluble TNF receptor and IgG was approved in 2005 in Japan. The post-marketing surveillance of 13,894 RA patients revealed the efficacy and safety profiles of etanercept in the Japanese population, as well as overseas studies. Abatacept, a recombinant fusion protein of CTLA4 and IgG, is another biological agent for RA. Two clinical trials disclosed the efficacy of abatacept for difficult-to-treat patients: the AIM for MTX-resistant cases and the ATTAIN for patients who are resistant to anti-TNF. The ATTEST trial suggested abatacept might have more acceptable safety profile than infliximab. These biologics are also promising for the treatment of RA for not only relieving clinical symptoms and signs but retarding structural damage.

  5. Biological preconcentrator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manginell, Ronald P [Albuquerque, NM; Bunker, Bruce C [Albuquerque, NM; Huber, Dale L [Albuquerque, NM

    2008-09-09

    A biological preconcentrator comprises a stimulus-responsive active film on a stimulus-producing microfabricated platform. The active film can comprise a thermally switchable polymer film that can be used to selectively absorb and desorb proteins from a protein mixture. The biological microfabricated platform can comprise a thin membrane suspended on a substrate with an integral resistive heater and/or thermoelectric cooler for thermal switching of the active polymer film disposed on the membrane. The active polymer film can comprise hydrogel-like polymers, such as poly(ethylene oxide) or poly(n-isopropylacrylamide), that are tethered to the membrane. The biological preconcentrator can be fabricated with semiconductor materials and technologies.

  6. Environmental assessment of the south Texas outer continental shelf : biological investigations from 01 January 1961 to 01 December 1975 (NODC Accession 7600741)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Biological and chemical data were collected using net, buoy, and bottle casts from the GUS III and LONGHORN in the Gulf of Mexico from 01 January 1961 to 01 December...

  7. Biological, oceanographic and meteorological data collected as part of the Outer Continental Shelf Environmental Assessment Program (OCSEAP) from 1946-01-01 to 1990-10-11

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This collection contains physical, biological, chemical and meteorological data collected from various platforms by various organizations. Data were collected as...

  8. Managing biological diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samson, Fred B.; Knopf, Fritz L.

    1993-01-01

    Biological diversity is the variety of life and accompanying ecological processes (Off. Technol. Assess. 1987, Wilcove and Samson 1987, Keystone 1991). Conservation of biological diversity is a major environmental issue (Wilson 1988, Counc. Environ. Quality 1991). The health and future of the earth's ecological systems (Lubchenco et al. 1991), global climate change (Botkin 1990), and an ever-increasing rate in loss of species, communities, and ecological systems (Myers 1990) are among issues drawing biological diversity to the mainstream of conservation worldwide (Int. Union Conserv. Nat. and Nat. Resour. [IUCN] et al. 1991). The legal mandate for conserving biological diversity is now in place (Carlson 1988, Doremus 1991). More than 19 federal laws govern the use of biological resources in the United States (Rein 1991). The proposed National Biological Diversity Conservation and Environmental Research Act (H.R. 585 and S.58) notes the need for a national biological diversity policy, would create a national center for biological diversity research, and recommends a federal interagency strategy for ecosystem conservation. There are, however, hard choices ahead for the conservation of biological diversity, and biologists are grappling with how to set priorities in research and management (Roberts 1988). We sense disillusion among field biologists and managers relative to how to operationally approach the seemingly overwhelming charge of conserving biological diversity. Biologists also need to respond to critics like Hunt (1991) who suggest a tree farm has more biological diversity than an equal area of old-growth forest. At present, science has played only a minor role in the conservation of biological diversity (Weston 1992) with no unified approach available to evaluate strategies and programs that address the quality and quantity of biological diversity (Murphy 1990, Erwin 1992). Although actions to conserve biological diversity need to be clearly defined by

  9. Environmental biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tschumi, P.A.

    1981-01-01

    Environmental biology illustrates the functioning of ecosystems and the dynamics of populations with many examples from limnology and terrestrial ecology. On this basis, present environmental problems are analyzed. The present environmental crisis is seen as a result of the failure to observe ecological laws. (orig.) [de

  10. Biological timekeeping

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lloyd, David

    2016-01-01

    , the networks that connect differenttime domains and the oscillations, rhythms and biological clocks that coordinate andsynchronise the complexity of the living state.“It is the pattern maintained by this homeostasis, which is the touchstone ofour personal identity. Our tissues change as we live: the food we...

  11. Scaffolded biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minelli, Alessandro

    2016-09-01

    Descriptions and interpretations of the natural world are dominated by dichotomies such as organism vs. environment, nature vs. nurture, genetic vs. epigenetic, but in the last couple of decades strong dissatisfaction with those partitions has been repeatedly voiced and a number of alternative perspectives have been suggested, from perspectives such as Dawkins' extended phenotype, Turner's extended organism, Oyama's Developmental Systems Theory and Odling-Smee's niche construction theory. Last in time is the description of biological phenomena in terms of hybrids between an organism (scaffolded system) and a living or non-living scaffold, forming unit systems to study processes such as reproduction and development. As scaffold, eventually, we can define any resource used by the biological system, especially in development and reproduction, without incorporating it as happens in the case of resources fueling metabolism. Addressing biological systems as functionally scaffolded systems may help pointing to functional relationships that can impart temporal marking to the developmental process and thus explain its irreversibility; revisiting the boundary between development and metabolism and also regeneration phenomena, by suggesting a conceptual framework within which to investigate phenomena of regular hypermorphic regeneration such as characteristic of deer antlers; fixing a periodization of development in terms of the times at which a scaffolding relationship begins or is terminated; and promoting plant galls to legitimate study objects of developmental biology.

  12. Biological digestion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rosevear, A.

    1988-01-01

    This paper discusses the biological degradation of non-radioactive organic material occurring in radioactive wastes. The biochemical steps are often performed using microbes or isolated enzymes in combination with chemical steps and the aim is to oxidise the carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen and sulphur to their respective oxides. (U.K.)

  13. Marine Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dewees, Christopher M.; Hooper, Jon K.

    1976-01-01

    A variety of informational material for a course in marine biology or oceanology at the secondary level is presented. Among the topics discussed are: food webs and pyramids, planktonic blooms, marine life, plankton nets, food chains, phytoplankton, zooplankton, larval plankton and filter feeders. (BT)

  14. Water-Quality and Biological Assessment of the Iowa River and Tributaries Within and Contiguous to the Meskwaki Settlement of the Sac and Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa, 2006-07

    Science.gov (United States)

    Littin, Gregory R.; McVay, Jason C.

    2009-01-01

    In cooperation with the Sac and Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa (Meskwaki Nation), the U.S. Geological Survey conducted a 2-year baseline assessment of the chemical and biological quality of streams within the Meskwaki Settlement in central Iowa. The Meskwaki Nation is a federally recognized tribe that wishes to establish water-quality standards to safeguard the integrity of surface waters and aquatic biota within the settlement for the health and welfare of the tribal community. The settlement is drained by the Iowa River and four tributaries (Onion, Cattail, Raven, and Bennett Creeks). Water-quality samples were collected at three sites on the Iowa River, two sites on Onion Creek, and one site each on Cattail, Raven, and Bennett Creeks from April 2006 through July 2007. Biological and habitat assessments were conducted at all three sites on the Iowa River and the downstream-most site on Onion Creek from June through August 2007. Analysis of physical properties, major ions, nutrients, trace compounds, bacteria, and total suspended solids in water, and trace metals and organic compounds in streambed sediment provided information about the effects of anthropogenic (human related) activities on the water quality of settlement streams. Analysis of biological samples collected during the summer of 2007, including fish community, benthic macroinvertebrates, and periphyton samples, as well as physical habitat characteristics, provided information on the effects of water quality on the condition of the aquatic environment. The majority of surface water sampled within the settlement was predominately a calcium bicarbonate type. Nitrates (nitrate plus nitrite as nitrogen) exceeded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (USEPA) primary drinking-water Maximum Contaminant Level of 10 ug/L in 19 of 36 samples from sites on the Iowa River and Raven and Bennett Creeks but not in samples from Onion and Cattail Creeks. None of the samples analyzed for pesticides, trace

  15. Biological radioprotector

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stefanescu, Ioan; Titescu, Gheorghe; Tamaian, Radu; Haulica, Ion; Bild, Walther

    2002-01-01

    According to the patent description, the biological radioprotector is deuterium depleted water, DDW, produced by vacuum distillation with an isotopic content lower than natural value. It appears as such or in a mixture with natural water and carbon dioxide. It can be used for preventing and reducing the ionizing radiation effects upon humans or animal organisms, exposed therapeutically, professionally or accidentally to radiation. The most significant advantage of using DDW as biological radioprotector results from its way of administration. Indeed no one of the radioprotectors currently used today can be orally administrated, what reduces the patients' compliance to prophylactic administrations. The biological radioprotector is an unnoxious product obtained from natural water, which can be administrated as food additive instead of drinking water. Dose modification factor is according to initial estimates around 1.9, what is a remarkable feature when one takes into account that the product is toxicity-free and side effect-free and can be administrated prophylactically as a food additive. A net radioprotective action of the deuterium depletion was evidenced experimentally in laboratory animals (rats) hydrated with DDW of 30 ppm D/(D+H) concentration as compared with normally hydrated control animals. Knowing the effects of irradiation and mechanisms of the acute radiation disease as well as the effects of administration of radiomimetic chemicals upon cellular lines of fast cell division, it appears that the effects of administrating DDW result from stimulation of the immunity system. In conclusion, the biological radioprotector DDW presents the following advantages: - it is obtained from natural products without toxicity; - it is easy to be administrated as a food additive, replacing the drinking water; - besides radioprotective effects, the product has also immunostimulative and antitumoral effects

  16. Assessing Biological Response to Bevacizumab Using 18F-Fluoromisonidazole PET/MR Imaging in a Patient with Recurrent Anaplastic Astrocytoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramon F. Barajas

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available We present our initial experience in using single modality fluoromisonidazole (FMISO PET/MR imaging to noninvasively evaluate the biological effects induced by bevacizumab therapy in a patient treated for recurrent high grade glioma. In this index patient, bevacizumab therapy resulted in the development of nonenhancing tumor characterized by reduced diffusion and markedly decreased FMISO uptake in the setting of maintained CBF and CBV. These observations suggest that the dynamic biological interplay between tissue hypoxia and vascular normalization occurring within treated recurrent high grade glioma can be captured utilizing FMISO PET/MR imaging.

  17. Marine biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thurman, H.V.; Webber, H.H.

    1984-01-01

    This book discusses both taxonomic and ecological topics on marine biology. Full coverage of marine organisms of all five kingdoms is provided, along with interesting and thorough discussion of all major marine habitats. Organization into six major parts allows flexibility. It also provides insight into important topics such as disposal of nuclear waste at sea, the idea that life began on the ocean floor, and how whales, krill, and people interact. A full-color photo chapter reviews questions, and exercises. The contents are: an overview marine biology: fundamental concepts/investigating life in the ocean; the physical ocean, the ocean floor, the nature of water, the nature and motion of ocean water; general ecology, conditions for life in the sea, biological productivity and energy transfer; marine organisms; monera, protista, mycota and metaphyta; the smaller marine animals, the large animals marine habitats, the intertidal zone/benthos of the continental shelf, the photic zone, the deep ocean, the ocean under stress, marine pollution, appendix a: the metric system and conversion factors/ appendix b: prefixes and suffixes/ appendix c: taxonomic classification of common marine organisms, and glossary, and index

  18. Structural Biology Fact Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... NIGMS NIGMS Home > Science Education > Structural Biology Structural Biology Tagline (Optional) Middle/Main Content Area PDF Version (688 KB) Other Fact Sheets What is structural biology? Structural biology is the study of how biological ...

  19. Assessing non-target effects and host feeding of the exotic parasitoid Apanteles taragamae, a potential biological control agent of the cowpea pod borer Maruca vitrata

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dannon, A.E.; Tamo, M.; Huis, van A.; Dicke, M.

    2012-01-01

    Apanteles taragamae Viereck is a larval parasitoid introduced in Benin for classical biological control of the cowpea pod borer Maruca vitrata Fabricius. In the laboratory, we evaluated the effects of A. taragamae on non-target herbivore species, and on another parasitoid of M. vitrata, i.e. the

  20. Multidisciplinary Assessment and Treatment of Self-Injurious Behavior in Autism Spectrum Disorder and Intellectual Disability: Integration of Psychological and Biological Theory and Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minshawi, Noha F.; Hurwitz, Sarah; Morriss, Danielle; McDougle, Christopher J.

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this review is to consider the psychological (largely behavioral) and biological [neurochemical, medical (including genetic), and pharmacological] theories and approaches that contribute to current thinking about the etiology and treatment of self-injurious behavior (SIB) in individuals with autism spectrum disorder and/or…

  1. Engineering assessment and feasibility study of Chattanooga Shale as a future source of uranium. [Preliminary mining; data on soils, meteorology, water resources, and biological resources

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1978-06-01

    This volume contains five appendixes: Chattanooga Shale preliminary mining study, soils data, meteorologic data, water resources data, and biological resource data. The area around DeKalb County in Tennessee is the most likely site for commercial development for recovery of uranium. (DLC)

  2. Economic assessment of the contribution of biological control to the management of invasive alien plants and to the protection of ecosystem services in South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    De Lange, Willem J

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available This study is a first attempt at a holistic economic evaluation of South African endeavours to manage invasive alien plants using biological control. The author’s focus was on the delivery of ecosystem services from habitats that are invaded...

  3. The effect of sanitary landfill leachate aging on the biological treatment and assessment of photoelectrooxidation as a pre-treatment process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Müller, Gabriel Timm [Universidade Estadual do Rio Grande do Sul (UERGS), R. Gal. João Manoel, 50, CEP 90010-030 Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Giacobbo, Alexandre [Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Av. Bento Gonçalves, 9500, Setor 4, Prédio 74, CEP 91501-970 Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Santos Chiaramonte, Edson Abel dos [Universidade Estadual do Rio Grande do Sul (UERGS), R. Gal. João Manoel, 50, CEP 90010-030 Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Rodrigues, Marco Antônio Siqueira [Universidade FEEVALE, ICET, RS 239, 2755, CEP 93352-000 Novo Hamburgo, RS (Brazil); Meneguzzi, Alvaro [Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Av. Bento Gonçalves, 9500, Setor 4, Prédio 74, CEP 91501-970 Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Bernardes, Andréa Moura, E-mail: amb@ufrgs.br [Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Av. Bento Gonçalves, 9500, Setor 4, Prédio 74, CEP 91501-970 Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil)

    2015-02-15

    Highlights: • Photoelectrooxidation (PEO) emerges as a new technology for leachate treatment. • Aging of sanitary landfills acts on leachate composition and biodegradability. • PEO is applied as leachate pretreatment before the biological processes. • PEO produced significant changes in the leachate matrix, easing biological process. - Abstract: The sanitary landfill leachate is a dark liquid, of highly variable composition, with recalcitrant features that hamper conventional biological treatment. The physical–chemical characteristics of the leachate along the landfill aging, as well as their effects on the efficiency of the conventional treatment, were evaluated at this paper. The feasibility of photoelectrooxidation process as an alternative technique for treatment of landfill leachates was also determined. Photoelectrooxidation experiments were conducted in a bench-scale reactor. Analysis of the raw leachate revealed many critical parameters demonstrating that the recalcitrance of leachate tends to increase with time, directly influencing the decline in efficiency of the conventional treatment currently employed. The effects of current density and lamp power were investigated. Using a 400 W power lamp and a current density of 31.5 mA cm{sup −2}, 53% and 61% efficiency for the removal of ammoniacal nitrogen and chemical oxygen demand were respectively achieved by applying photoelectrooxidation process. With the removal of these pollutants, downstream biological treatment should be improved. These results demonstrate that photoelectrooxidation is a feasible technique for the treatment of sanitary landfill leachate, even considering this effluent’s high resistance to treatment.

  4. The effect of sanitary landfill leachate aging on the biological treatment and assessment of photoelectrooxidation as a pre-treatment process

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Müller, Gabriel Timm; Giacobbo, Alexandre; Santos Chiaramonte, Edson Abel dos; Rodrigues, Marco Antônio Siqueira; Meneguzzi, Alvaro; Bernardes, Andréa Moura

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • Photoelectrooxidation (PEO) emerges as a new technology for leachate treatment. • Aging of sanitary landfills acts on leachate composition and biodegradability. • PEO is applied as leachate pretreatment before the biological processes. • PEO produced significant changes in the leachate matrix, easing biological process. - Abstract: The sanitary landfill leachate is a dark liquid, of highly variable composition, with recalcitrant features that hamper conventional biological treatment. The physical–chemical characteristics of the leachate along the landfill aging, as well as their effects on the efficiency of the conventional treatment, were evaluated at this paper. The feasibility of photoelectrooxidation process as an alternative technique for treatment of landfill leachates was also determined. Photoelectrooxidation experiments were conducted in a bench-scale reactor. Analysis of the raw leachate revealed many critical parameters demonstrating that the recalcitrance of leachate tends to increase with time, directly influencing the decline in efficiency of the conventional treatment currently employed. The effects of current density and lamp power were investigated. Using a 400 W power lamp and a current density of 31.5 mA cm −2 , 53% and 61% efficiency for the removal of ammoniacal nitrogen and chemical oxygen demand were respectively achieved by applying photoelectrooxidation process. With the removal of these pollutants, downstream biological treatment should be improved. These results demonstrate that photoelectrooxidation is a feasible technique for the treatment of sanitary landfill leachate, even considering this effluent’s high resistance to treatment

  5. Biological assessment of recombinant avian metapneumovirus subgroup C (aMPV-C) viruses containing different length of the G gene in cultured cells and SPF turkeys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Genetic variation in length of the glycoprotein (G) gene among different avian metapneumovirus subgroup C (aMPV-C) isolates has been reported. However, its biological significance in virus replication and pathogenicity is unknown. In this study, we generated two Colorado (CO) strain-based recombinan...

  6. Paleoreconstruction by biological markers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Seifert, W K; Moldowan, J M

    1981-06-01

    During diagenesis and conversion of the original lipid fraction of biological systems to petroleum hydrocarbons, the following four basic events needed for paleoreconstruction may be monitored by biological markers: (1) sourcing, (2) maturation, (3) migration and (4) biodegradation. Actual cases of applying biological markers to petroleum exploration problems in different parts of the world are demonstrated. Cretaceous- and Phosphoria-sourced oils in the Wyoming Thrust Belt can be distinguished from one another by high quality source fingerprinting of biomarker terpanes using gas chromatography mass spectrometry. Identification of recently discovered biological markers, head-to-head isoprenoids, allows source differentiation between some oils from Sumatra. The degree of crude oil maturation in basins from California, Alaska, Russia, Wyoming and Louisiana can be assessed by specific biomarker ratios (20S/20R sterane epimers). Field evidence from such interpretation is augmented by laboratory pyrolysis of the rock. Extensive migration is documented by biomarkers in several oils. Biological marker results are consistent with the geological setting and add a dimension in assisting the petroleum explorationist towar paleoreconstruction.

  7. Biological assessment of the effects of construction and operation of a depleted uranium hexafluoride conversion facility at the Portsmouth, Ohio,site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Van Lonkhuyzen, R.

    2005-01-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Depleted Uranium Hexafluoride (DUF 6 ) Management Program evaluated alternatives for managing its inventory of DUF 6 and issued the ''Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement for Alternative Strategies for the Long-Term Management and Use of Depleted Uranium Hexafluoride'' (DUF 6 PEIS) in April 1999 (DOE 1999). The DUF 6 inventory is stored in cylinders at three DOE sites: Paducah, Kentucky; Portsmouth, Ohio; and East Tennessee Technology Park (ETTP), near Oak Ridge, Tennessee. In the Record of Decision for the DUF 6 PEIS, DOE stated its decision to promptly convert the DUF 6 inventory to a more stable chemical form. Subsequently, the U.S. Congress passed, and the President signed, the ''2002 Supplemental Appropriations Act for Further Recovery from and Response to Terrorist Attacks on the United States'' (Public Law No. 107-206). This law stipulated in part that, within 30 days of enactment, DOE must award a contract for the design, construction, and operation of a DUF 6 conversion plant at the Department's Paducah, Kentucky, and Portsmouth, Ohio, sites, and for the shipment of DUF 6 cylinders stored at ETTP to the Portsmouth site for conversion. This biological assessment (BA) has been prepared by DOE, pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 and the Endangered Species Act of 1974, to evaluate potential impacts to federally listed species from the construction and operation of a conversion facility at the DOE Portsmouth site. The Indiana bat is known to occur in the area of the Portsmouth site and may potentially occur on the site during spring or summer. Evaluations of the Portsmouth site indicated that most of the site was found to have poor summer habitat for the Indiana bat because of the small size, isolation, and insufficient maturity of the few woodlands on the site. Potential summer habitat for the Indiana bat was identified outside the developed area bounded by Perimeter Road, within the corridors

  8. Biology Branch

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baldwin, W F

    1974-12-31

    Progress is reported on the following studies in biochemistry and molecular biology: study of long pyrimidine polynucleotides in DNA; isolation of thymine dimers from Schizosaccharomyces pombe; thermal stability of high molecular weight RNA; nucleases of Micrococcus radiodurans; effect of ionizing radiation on M. radiodurans cell walls and cell membranes; chemical modification of nucleotides; exonucleases of M. radiodurans; and enzymatic basis of repair of radioinduced damage in M. radiodurans. Genetics, development, and population studies include repair pathways and mutation induction in yeast; induction of pure mutant clones in yeast; radiosensitivity of bacteriophage T4; polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of bacteriophage T4; radiation genetics of Dahibominus; and radiation studies on bitting flies. (HLW)

  9. Synthetic biology and occupational risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, John; Murashov, Vladimir; Schulte, Paul

    2017-03-01

    Synthetic biology is an emerging interdisciplinary field of biotechnology that involves applying the principles of engineering and chemical design to biological systems. Biosafety professionals have done an excellent job in addressing research laboratory safety as synthetic biology and gene editing have emerged from the larger field of biotechnology. Despite these efforts, risks posed by synthetic biology are of increasing concern as research procedures scale up to industrial processes in the larger bioeconomy. A greater number and variety of workers will be exposed to commercial synthetic biology risks in the future, including risks to a variety of workers from the use of lentiviral vectors as gene transfer devices. There is a need to review and enhance current protection measures in the field of synthetic biology, whether in experimental laboratories where new advances are being researched, in health care settings where treatments using viral vectors as gene delivery systems are increasingly being used, or in the industrial bioeconomy. Enhanced worker protection measures should include increased injury and illness surveillance of the synthetic biology workforce; proactive risk assessment and management of synthetic biology products; research on the relative effectiveness of extrinsic and intrinsic biocontainment methods; specific safety guidance for synthetic biology industrial processes; determination of appropriate medical mitigation measures for lentiviral vector exposure incidents; and greater awareness and involvement in synthetic biology safety by the general occupational safety and health community as well as by government occupational safety and health research and regulatory agencies.

  10. Biological biomaterials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jorge-Herrero, E. [Servicio de Cirugia Experimental. Clinica Puerta de Hierro, Madrid (Spain)

    1997-05-01

    There are a number of situations in which substances of biological origin are employed as biomaterials. Most of them are macromolecules derived from isolated connective tissue or the connective tissue itself in membrane form, in both cases, the tissue can be used in its natural form or be chemically treated. In other cases, certain blood vessels can be chemically pretreated and used as vascular prostheses. Proteins such as albumin, collagen and fibrinogen are employed to coat vascular prostheses. Certain polysaccharides have also been tested for use in controlled drug release systems. Likewise, a number of tissues, such as dura mater, bovine pericardium, procine valves and human valves, are used in the preparation of cardiac prostheses. We also use veins from animals or humans in arterial replacement. In none of these cases are the tissues employed dissimilar to the native tissues as they have been chemically modified, becoming a new bio material with different physical and biochemical properties. In short, we find that natural products are being utilized as biomaterials and must be considered as such; thus, it is necessary to study both their chemicobiological and physicomechanical properties. In the present report, we review the current applications, problems and future prospects of some of these biological biomaterials. (Author) 84 refs.

  11. "I Forgot I Wasn't Saving the World": the Use of Formative and Summative Assessment in Instructional Video Games for Undergraduate Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lookadoo, Kathryn L.; Bostwick, Eryn N.; Ralston, Ryan; Elizondo, Francisco Javier; Wilson, Scott; Shaw, Tarren J.; Jensen, Matthew L.

    2017-12-01

    This study examined the role of formative and summative assessment in instructional video games on student learning and engagement. A 2 (formative feedback: present vs absent) × 2 (summative feedback: present vs absent) factorial design with an offset control (recorded lecture) was conducted to explore the impacts of assessment in video games. A total of 172 undergraduates were randomly assigned to one of four instructional video game conditions or the control. Results found that knowledge significantly increased from the pretest for players in all game conditions. Participants in summative assessment conditions learned more than players without summative assessment. In terms of engagement outcomes, formative assessment conditions did not significantly produce better learning engagement outcomes than conditions without formative assessment. However, summative assessment conditions were associated with higher temporal disassociation than non-summative conditions. Implications for future instructional video game development and testing are discussed in the paper.

  12. Development of the Biology Card Sorting Task to Measure Conceptual Expertise in Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

    There are widespread aspirations to focus undergraduate biology education on teaching students to think conceptually like biologists; however, there is a dearth of assessment tools designed to measure progress from novice to expert biological conceptual thinking. We present the development of a novel assessment tool, the Biology Card Sorting Task,…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-03-17

    scrub and slash pine flatwoods. J. Herpetology 25:317-321. Brode, E.E. 1959. Notes on the behavior of Gopherus polyphemus. Herpetologica 15:101-102...Gopherus polyphemus, in northeastern Florida. J. Herpetology 30:14-18. Dale, V.H., S.C. Beyeler, and B. Jackson. 2002. Understory vegetation...Interior, National Biological Survey. Diemer, J.E. 1992. Demography of the tortoise Gopherus polyphemus in Northern Florida. J. Herpetology 26:281-289

  14. Comparative physical, chemical and biological assessment of simple and titanium-doped ovine dentine-derived hydroxyapatite coatings fabricated by pulsed laser deposition

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Duta, L.; Mihailescu, N.; Popescu, A.C.; Luculescu, C.R. [National Institute for Lasers, Plasma and Radiation Physics, 077125 Magurele (Romania); Mihailescu, I.N., E-mail: ion.mihailescu@inflpr.ro [National Institute for Lasers, Plasma and Radiation Physics, 077125 Magurele (Romania); Çetin, G.; Gunduz, O. [Department of Bioengineering, Faculty of Engineering, Marmara University, 34722 Istanbul (Turkey); Oktar, F.N. [Department of Bioengineering, Faculty of Engineering, Marmara University, 34722 Istanbul (Turkey); Department of Medical Imaging Techniques, Vocational School of Health Services, Marmara University, 34668 Istanbul (Turkey); Nanotechnology and Biomaterials Application & Research Centre, Marmara University, 34722 Istanbul (Turkey); Popa, A.C. [National Institute of Materials Physics, 077125 Magurele (Romania); Army Centre for Medical Research, 010195 Bucharest (Romania); Kuncser, A.; Besleaga, C. [National Institute of Materials Physics, 077125 Magurele (Romania); Stan, G.E., E-mail: george_stan@infim.ro [National Institute of Materials Physics, 077125 Magurele (Romania)

    2017-08-15

    Highlights: • Pulsed laser deposition of Ti doped hydroxyapatite films of biological origin. • Downgrade of films’ crystallinity and increase of roughness induced by Ti doping. • Bonding strength values superior to minimum value imposed by ISO standards. • Excellent biocompatibility in hMSC cultures of Ti doped structures. • Ti doped hydroxyapatite films as feasible materials for implantology applications. - Abstract: We report on the synthesis by Pulsed Laser Deposition of simple and Ti doped hydroxyapatite thin films of biological (ovine dentine) origin. Detailed physical, chemical, mechanical and biological investigations were performed. Morphological examination of films showed a surface composed of spheroidal particulates, of micronic size. Compositional analyses pointed to the presence of typical natural doping elements of bone, along with a slight non-stoichiometry of the deposited films. Structural investigations proved the monophasic hydroxyapatite nature of both simple and Ti doped films. Ti doping of biological hydroxyapatite induced an overall downgrade of the films crystallinity together with an increase of the films roughness. It is to be emphasized that bonding strength values measured at film/Ti substrate interface were superior to the minimum value imposed by International Standards regulating the load-bearing implant coatings. In vitro tests on Ti doped structures, compared to simple ones, revealed excellent biocompatibility in human mesenchymal stem cell cultures, a higher proliferation rate and a good cytocompatibility. The obtained results aim to elucidate the overall positive role of Ti doping on the hydroxyapatite films performance, and demonstrate the possibility to use this novel type of coatings as feasible materials for future implantology applications.

  15. Relative Biological Effectiveness Variation Along Monoenergetic and Modulated Bragg Peaks of a 62-MeV Therapeutic Proton Beam: A Preclinical Assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chaudhary, Pankaj; Marshall, Thomas I.; Perozziello, Francesca M.; Manti, Lorenzo; Currell, Frederick J.; Hanton, Fiona; McMahon, Stephen J.; Kavanagh, Joy N.; Cirrone, Giuseppe Antonio Pablo; Romano, Francesco; Prise, Kevin M.; Schettino, Giuseppe

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: The biological optimization of proton therapy can be achieved only through a detailed evaluation of relative biological effectiveness (RBE) variations along the full range of the Bragg curve. The clinically used RBE value of 1.1 represents a broad average, which disregards the steep rise of linear energy transfer (LET) at the distal end of the spread-out Bragg peak (SOBP). With particular attention to the key endpoint of cell survival, our work presents a comparative investigation of cell killing RBE variations along monoenergetic (pristine) and modulated (SOBP) beams using human normal and radioresistant cells with the aim to investigate the RBE dependence on LET and intrinsic radiosensitvity. Methods and Materials: Human fibroblasts (AG01522) and glioma (U87) cells were irradiated at 6 depth positions along pristine and modulated 62-MeV proton beams at the INFN-LNS (Catania, Italy). Cell killing RBE variations were measured using standard clonogenic assays and were further validated using Monte Carlo simulations and the local effect model (LEM). Results: We observed significant cell killing RBE variations along the proton beam path, particularly in the distal region showing strong dose dependence. Experimental RBE values were in excellent agreement with the LEM predicted values, indicating dose-averaged LET as a suitable predictor of proton biological effectiveness. Data were also used to validate a parameterized RBE model. Conclusions: The predicted biological dose delivered to a tumor region, based on the variable RBE inferred from the data, varies significantly with respect to the clinically used constant RBE of 1.1. The significant RBE increase at the distal end suggests also a potential to enhance optimization of treatment modalities such as LET painting of hypoxic tumors. The study highlights the limitation of adoption of a constant RBE for proton therapy and suggests approaches for fast implementation of RBE models in treatment planning

  16. Comparative physical, chemical and biological assessment of simple and titanium-doped ovine dentine-derived hydroxyapatite coatings fabricated by pulsed laser deposition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duta, L.; Mihailescu, N.; Popescu, A.C.; Luculescu, C.R.; Mihailescu, I.N.; Çetin, G.; Gunduz, O.; Oktar, F.N.; Popa, A.C.; Kuncser, A.; Besleaga, C.; Stan, G.E.

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • Pulsed laser deposition of Ti doped hydroxyapatite films of biological origin. • Downgrade of films’ crystallinity and increase of roughness induced by Ti doping. • Bonding strength values superior to minimum value imposed by ISO standards. • Excellent biocompatibility in hMSC cultures of Ti doped structures. • Ti doped hydroxyapatite films as feasible materials for implantology applications. - Abstract: We report on the synthesis by Pulsed Laser Deposition of simple and Ti doped hydroxyapatite thin films of biological (ovine dentine) origin. Detailed physical, chemical, mechanical and biological investigations were performed. Morphological examination of films showed a surface composed of spheroidal particulates, of micronic size. Compositional analyses pointed to the presence of typical natural doping elements of bone, along with a slight non-stoichiometry of the deposited films. Structural investigations proved the monophasic hydroxyapatite nature of both simple and Ti doped films. Ti doping of biological hydroxyapatite induced an overall downgrade of the films crystallinity together with an increase of the films roughness. It is to be emphasized that bonding strength values measured at film/Ti substrate interface were superior to the minimum value imposed by International Standards regulating the load-bearing implant coatings. In vitro tests on Ti doped structures, compared to simple ones, revealed excellent biocompatibility in human mesenchymal stem cell cultures, a higher proliferation rate and a good cytocompatibility. The obtained results aim to elucidate the overall positive role of Ti doping on the hydroxyapatite films performance, and demonstrate the possibility to use this novel type of coatings as feasible materials for future implantology applications.

  17. Preliminary assessment of geologic materials to minimize biological intrusion of low-level waste trench covers and plans for the future

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hakonson, T.E.; White, G.C.; Gladney, E.S.; Muller, M.

    1981-01-01

    The long-term integrity of low-level waste shallow land burial sites is dependent on the interaction of physical, chemical, and biological factors that modify the waste containment system. Past research on low-level waste shallow land burial methods has emphasized physical (i.e., water infiltration, soil erosion) and chemical (radionuclide leaching) processes that can cause radionuclide transport from a waste site. Preliminary results demonstrate that a sandy backfill material offers little resistance to root and animal intrusion through the cover profile. However, bentonite clay, cobble, and cobble-gravel combinations do reduce plant root and animal intrusion through cover profiles compared with sandy backfill soil. However, bentonite clay barrier systems appear to be degraded by plant roots through time. Desiccation of the clay barrier by invading plant roots may limit the usefulness of bentonite clay as a moisture and/or biological carrier unless due consideration is given to this interaction. Future experiments are described that further examine the effect of plant roots on clay barrier systems and that determine the effectiveness of proposed biological barriers on larger scales and under various stress conditions

  18. Comparative physical, chemical and biological assessment of simple and titanium-doped ovine dentine-derived hydroxyapatite coatings fabricated by pulsed laser deposition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duta, L.; Mihailescu, N.; Popescu, A. C.; Luculescu, C. R.; Mihailescu, I. N.; Çetin, G.; Gunduz, O.; Oktar, F. N.; Popa, A. C.; Kuncser, A.; Besleaga, C.; Stan, G. E.

    2017-08-01

    We report on the synthesis by Pulsed Laser Deposition of simple and Ti doped hydroxyapatite thin films of biological (ovine dentine) origin. Detailed physical, chemical, mechanical and biological investigations were performed. Morphological examination of films showed a surface composed of spheroidal particulates, of micronic size. Compositional analyses pointed to the presence of typical natural doping elements of bone, along with a slight non-stoichiometry of the deposited films. Structural investigations proved the monophasic hydroxyapatite nature of both simple and Ti doped films. Ti doping of biological hydroxyapatite induced an overall downgrade of the films crystallinity together with an increase of the films roughness. It is to be emphasized that bonding strength values measured at film/Ti substrate interface were superior to the minimum value imposed by International Standards regulating the load-bearing implant coatings. In vitro tests on Ti doped structures, compared to simple ones, revealed excellent biocompatibility in human mesenchymal stem cell cultures, a higher proliferation rate and a good cytocompatibility. The obtained results aim to elucidate the overall positive role of Ti doping on the hydroxyapatite films performance, and demonstrate the possibility to use this novel type of coatings as feasible materials for future implantology applications.

  19. Biological effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Trott, K.R.

    1973-01-01

    Following an introduction into the field of cellular radiation effect considering the most important experimental results, the biological significance of the colony formation ability is brought out. The inactivation concept of stem cells does not only prove to be good, according to the present results, in the interpretation of the pathogenesis of acute radiation effects on moult tissue, it also enables chronicle radiation injuries to be interpreted through changes in the fibrous part of the organs. Radiation therapy of tumours can also be explained to a large extent by the radiation effect on the unlimited reproductiveness of tumour cells. The more or less similar dose effect curves for healthy and tumour tissue in practice lead to intermittent irradiation. The dependence of the intermittent doses and intervals on factors such as Elkind recovery, synchronisation, redistribution, reoxygenation, repopulation and regeneration are reviewed. (ORU/LH) [de

  20. Agreement between the DAS28-CRP assessed with 3 and 4 variables in patients with rheumatoid arthritis treated with biological agents in the daily clinic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, Ole Rintek

    2013-01-01

    The Disease Activity Score-28-C-reactive Protein 4 [DAS28-CRP(4)] composite measure for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is based on 4 variables: tender and swollen joint counts, CRP, and patient global assessment. DAS28-CRP(3) includes only 3 variables, because patient global assessment has been omitted...

  1. DEVELOPING STANDARDS FOR ASSESSING ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICAL, PHYSICAL, AND BIOLOGICAL STRESSORS THROUGH ASTM COMMITTEE E47: A PAST FOUNDATION OF PROVEN STANDARDS, A FUTURE OF GREAT POTENTIAL AND OPPORTUNITY

    Science.gov (United States)

    Development of standards associated with assessing the bioavailability of contaminants in sediment will be used as a case study for how standards have been developed through Committee E47. In 1987, Committee E47 established Subcommittee E47.03 on Sediment Assessment and Toxicity....

  2. Creating biological nanomaterials using synthetic biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rice, MaryJoe K; Ruder, Warren C

    2014-01-01

    Synthetic biology is a new discipline that combines science and engineering approaches to precisely control biological networks. These signaling networks are especially important in fields such as biomedicine and biochemical engineering. Additionally, biological networks can also be critical to the production of naturally occurring biological nanomaterials, and as a result, synthetic biology holds tremendous potential in creating new materials. This review introduces the field of synthetic biology, discusses how biological systems naturally produce materials, and then presents examples and strategies for incorporating synthetic biology approaches in the development of new materials. In particular, strategies for using synthetic biology to produce both organic and inorganic nanomaterials are discussed. Ultimately, synthetic biology holds the potential to dramatically impact biological materials science with significant potential applications in medical systems. (review)

  3. Creating biological nanomaterials using synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, MaryJoe K; Ruder, Warren C

    2014-02-01

    Synthetic biology is a new discipline that combines science and engineering approaches to precisely control biological networks. These signaling networks are especially important in fields such as biomedicine and biochemical engineering. Additionally, biological networks can also be critical to the production of naturally occurring biological nanomaterials, and as a result, synthetic biology holds tremendous potential in creating new materials. This review introduces the field of synthetic biology, discusses how biological systems naturally produce materials, and then presents examples and strategies for incorporating synthetic biology approaches in the development of new materials. In particular, strategies for using synthetic biology to produce both organic and inorganic nanomaterials are discussed. Ultimately, synthetic biology holds the potential to dramatically impact biological materials science with significant potential applications in medical systems.

  4. Biophysics and systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noble, Denis

    2010-03-13

    Biophysics at the systems level, as distinct from molecular biophysics, acquired its most famous paradigm in the work of Hodgkin and Huxley, who integrated their equations for the nerve impulse in 1952. Their approach has since been extended to other organs of the body, notably including the heart. The modern field of computational biology has expanded rapidly during the first decade of the twenty-first century and, through its contribution to what is now called systems biology, it is set to revise many of the fundamental principles of biology, including the relations between genotypes and phenotypes. Evolutionary theory, in particular, will require re-assessment. To succeed in this, computational and systems biology will need to develop the theoretical framework required to deal with multilevel interactions. While computational power is necessary, and is forthcoming, it is not sufficient. We will also require mathematical insight, perhaps of a nature we have not yet identified. This article is therefore also a challenge to mathematicians to develop such insights.

  5. Application of translocation, γ-H2AX, and Sam68 as a biological indicators for the assessment of radiation exposure in nuclear power plant workers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Kwang Hee; Park, Hyung Sun; Nam, Seon Young [Korea Hydro Nuclear Power Co., Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    2014-05-15

    This study showed that confirmation of the initial dose estimated by dicentric analysis is provided by the subsequent FISH analysis for translocation frequency and provides further evidence for the valid use of FISH as a retrospective biological dosimeter. The IAEA manual on cytogenetic dosimetry recommends a halftime value of 3 y to correct for the decrease of dicentrics in case of delayed sampling based on the patient data of Buckton. Support for this comes from the cytogenetic follow up of an individual exposed to tritium, which also indicated a decline in dicentrics with a half-time of ∼3 y. Naturally, the RBE of tritium, as well as other kinds of ionizing radiation, depends on the dose, exposure conditions, and studied parameters. The information about the RBE of tritium that is most important from an applied standpoint is that associated with the range of low doses. In our study, the dose dependence of tritium RBE was not identified because of very low dose Tritium (< 1mSv). However, The strong smooth relationship between translocation yield and age is shown in Table 2. The translocation yields reported here are only slightly lower than already published. The implication is that the increase of yield with age could be due to environmental factors, to a natural aging process or both. In addition, we confirmed that γ-H2AX and Sam68 associated with DNA damage and apoptosis, can be new biological indicators for radiation exposure. Radiation workers are exposed to ionizing radiation from various sources. Ionizing radiation produces several types of DNA lesion, including DNA base alterations, DNA. DNA cross-links, and single- and double-strand breaks. As a protocol for biological dosimetry recommended by IAEA (2001), the analysis of solid stained dicentric chromosomes has been used since the mid 1960s. The intervening years have seen great improvements bringing the technique to a point where dicentric analysis has become a routine component of the radiological

  6. Biological Sexing of a 4000-Year-Old Egyptian Mummy Head to Assess the Potential of Nuclear DNA Recovery from the Most Damaged and Limited Forensic Specimens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loreille, Odile; Ratnayake, Shashikala; Bazinet, Adam L; Stockwell, Timothy B; Sommer, Daniel D; Rohland, Nadin; Mallick, Swapan; Johnson, Philip L F; Skoglund, Pontus; Onorato, Anthony J; Bergman, Nicholas H; Reich, David; Irwin, Jodi A

    2018-03-01

    High throughput sequencing (HTS) has been used for a number of years in the field of paleogenomics to facilitate the recovery of small DNA fragments from ancient specimens. Recently, these techniques have also been applied in forensics, where they have been used for the recovery of mitochondrial DNA sequences from samples where traditional PCR-based assays fail because of the very short length of endogenous DNA molecules. Here, we describe the biological sexing of a ~4000-year-old Egyptian mummy using shotgun sequencing and two established methods of biological sex determination (R X and R Y ), by way of mitochondrial genome analysis as a means of sequence data authentication. This particular case of historical interest increases the potential utility of HTS techniques for forensic purposes by demonstrating that data from the more discriminatory nuclear genome can be recovered from the most damaged specimens, even in cases where mitochondrial DNA cannot be recovered with current PCR-based forensic technologies. Although additional work remains to be done before nuclear DNA recovered via these methods can be used routinely in operational casework for individual identification purposes, these results indicate substantial promise for the retrieval of probative individually identifying DNA data from the most limited and degraded forensic specimens.

  7. Biological Sexing of a 4000-Year-Old Egyptian Mummy Head to Assess the Potential of Nuclear DNA Recovery from the Most Damaged and Limited Forensic Specimens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Odile Loreille

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available High throughput sequencing (HTS has been used for a number of years in the field of paleogenomics to facilitate the recovery of small DNA fragments from ancient specimens. Recently, these techniques have also been applied in forensics, where they have been used for the recovery of mitochondrial DNA sequences from samples where traditional PCR-based assays fail because of the very short length of endogenous DNA molecules. Here, we describe the biological sexing of a ~4000-year-old Egyptian mummy using shotgun sequencing and two established methods of biological sex determination (RX and RY, by way of mitochondrial genome analysis as a means of sequence data authentication. This particular case of historical interest increases the potential utility of HTS techniques for forensic purposes by demonstrating that data from the more discriminatory nuclear genome can be recovered from the most damaged specimens, even in cases where mitochondrial DNA cannot be recovered with current PCR-based forensic technologies. Although additional work remains to be done before nuclear DNA recovered via these methods can be used routinely in operational casework for individual identification purposes, these results indicate substantial promise for the retrieval of probative individually identifying DNA data from the most limited and degraded forensic specimens.

  8. Synthesis and Biological Assessment of Racemic Benzochromenopyrimidinimines as Antioxidant, Cholinesterase, and Aβ1-42 Aggregation Inhibitors for Alzheimer's Disease Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dgachi, Youssef; Ismaili, Lhassane; Knez, Damijan; Benchekroun, Mohamed; Martin, Hélène; Szałaj, Natalia; Wehle, Sarah; Bautista-Aguilera, Oscar M; Luzet, Vincent; Bonnet, Alexandre; Malawska, Barbara; Gobec, Stanislav; Chioua, Mourad; Decker, Michael; Chabchoub, Fakher; Marco-Conte