Sample records for biologically inspired process

  1. Advances in isothermal amplification: novel strategies inspired by biological processes. (United States)

    Li, Jia; Macdonald, Joanne


    Nucleic acid amplification is an essential process in biological systems. The in vitro adoption of this process has resulted in powerful techniques that underpin modern molecular biology. The most common tool is polymerase chain reaction (PCR). However, the requirement for a thermal cycler has somewhat limited applications of this classic nucleic acid amplification technique. Isothermal amplification, on the other hand, obviates the use of a thermal cycler because reactions occur at a single temperature. Isothermal amplification methods are diverse, but all have been developed from an understanding of natural nucleic acid amplification processes. Here we review current isothermal amplification methods as classified by their enzymatic mechanisms. We compare their advantages, disadvantages, efficiencies, and applications. Finally, we mention some new developments associated with this technology, and consider future possibilities in molecular engineering and recombinant technologies that may develop from an appreciation of the molecular biology of natural systems.

  2. Proceedings Fourth Workshop on Membrane Computing and Biologically Inspired Process Calculi 2010

    CERN Document Server

    Ciobanu, Gabriel; 10.4204/EPTCS.40


    The 4th Workshop on Membrane Computing and Biologically Inspired Process Calculi (MeCBIC 2010) is organized in Jena as a satellite event of the Eleventh International Conference on Membrane Computing (CMC11). Biological membranes play a fundamental role in the complex reactions which take place in cells of living organisms. The importance of this role has been considered in two different types of formalisms introduced recently. Membrane systems were introduced as a class of distributed parallel computing devices inspired by the observation that any biological system is a complex hierarchical structure, with a flow of biochemical substances and information that underlies their functioning. The modeling and analysis of biological systems has also attracted considerable interest of the process algebra research community. Thus the notions of membranes and compartments have been explicitly represented in a family of calculi, such as ambients and brane calculi. A cross fertilization of these two research areas has ...

  3. A Biologically-Inspired Neural Network Architecture for Image Processing (United States)


    findings, in accord with other research cited here, were obtained from cortical measurements or, 15 adult cats and 12 kittens , all anesthetized ( models on a Cray computer. Furthermore, care should be taken to avoid exceeding machine memory capacity when running intensive processes

  4. Biologically inspired large scale chemical sensor arrays and embedded data processing (United States)

    Marco, S.; Gutiérrez-Gálvez, A.; Lansner, A.; Martinez, D.; Rospars, J. P.; Beccherelli, R.; Perera, A.; Pearce, T.; Vershure, P.; Persaud, K.


    Biological olfaction outperforms chemical instrumentation in specificity, response time, detection limit, coding capacity, time stability, robustness, size, power consumption, and portability. This biological function provides outstanding performance due, to a large extent, to the unique architecture of the olfactory pathway, which combines a high degree of redundancy, an efficient combinatorial coding along with unmatched chemical information processing mechanisms. The last decade has witnessed important advances in the understanding of the computational primitives underlying the functioning of the olfactory system. EU Funded Project NEUROCHEM (Bio-ICT-FET- 216916) has developed novel computing paradigms and biologically motivated artefacts for chemical sensing taking inspiration from the biological olfactory pathway. To demonstrate this approach, a biomimetic demonstrator has been built featuring a large scale sensor array (65K elements) in conducting polymer technology mimicking the olfactory receptor neuron layer, and abstracted biomimetic algorithms have been implemented in an embedded system that interfaces the chemical sensors. The embedded system integrates computational models of the main anatomic building blocks in the olfactory pathway: the olfactory bulb, and olfactory cortex in vertebrates (alternatively, antennal lobe and mushroom bodies in the insect). For implementation in the embedded processor an abstraction phase has been carried out in which their processing capabilities are captured by algorithmic solutions. Finally, the algorithmic models are tested with an odour robot with navigation capabilities in mixed chemical plumes

  5. A Biologically Inspired Classifier

    CERN Document Server

    Bagnoli, Franco


    We present a method for measuring the distance among records based on the correlations of data stored in the corresponding database entries. The original method (F. Bagnoli, A. Berrones and F. Franci. Physica A 332 (2004) 509-518) was formulated in the context of opinion formation. The opinions expressed over a set of topic originate a ``knowledge network'' among individuals, where two individuals are nearer the more similar their expressed opinions are. Assuming that individuals' opinions are stored in a database, the authors show that it is possible to anticipate an opinion using the correlations in the database. This corresponds to approximating the overlap between the tastes of two individuals with the correlations of their expressed opinions. In this paper we extend this model to nonlinear matching functions, inspired by biological problems such as microarray (probe-sample pairing). We investigate numerically the error between the correlation and the overlap matrix for eight sequences of reference with r...

  6. dNSP: a biologically inspired dynamic Neural network approach to Signal Processing. (United States)

    Cano-Izquierdo, José Manuel; Ibarrola, Julio; Pinzolas, Miguel; Almonacid, Miguel


    The arriving order of data is one of the intrinsic properties of a signal. Therefore, techniques dealing with this temporal relation are required for identification and signal processing tasks. To perform a classification of the signal according with its temporal characteristics, it would be useful to find a feature vector in which the temporal attributes were embedded. The correlation and power density spectrum functions are suitable tools to manage this issue. These functions are usually defined with statistical formulation. On the other hand, in biology there can be found numerous processes in which signals are processed to give a feature vector; for example, the processing of sound by the auditory system. In this work, the dNSP (dynamic Neural Signal Processing) architecture is proposed. This architecture allows representing a time-varying signal by a spatial (thus statical) vector. Inspired by the aforementioned biological processes, the dNSP performs frequency decomposition using an analogical parallel algorithm carried out by simple processing units. The architecture has been developed under the paradigm of a multilayer neural network, where the different layers are composed by units whose activation functions have been extracted from the theory of Neural Dynamic [Grossberg, S. (1988). Nonlinear neural networks principles, mechanisms and architectures. Neural Networks, 1, 17-61]. A theoretical study of the behavior of the dynamic equations of the units and their relationship with some statistical functions allows establishing a parallelism between the unit activations and correlation and power density spectrum functions. To test the capabilities of the proposed approach, several testbeds have been employed, i.e. the frequencial study of mathematical functions. As a possible application of the architecture, a highly interesting problem in the field of automatic control is addressed: the recognition of a controlled DC motor operating state.

  7. From biologically-inspired physics to physics-inspired biology From biologically-inspired physics to physics-inspired biology (United States)

    Kornyshev, Alexei A.


    The conference 'From DNA-Inspired Physics to Physics-Inspired Biology' (1-5 June 2009, International Center for Theoretical Physics, Trieste, Italy) that myself and two former presidents of the American Biophysical Society—Wilma Olson (Rutgers University) and Adrian Parsegian (NIH), with the support of an ICTP team (Ralf Gebauer (Local Organizer) and Doreen Sauleek (Conference Secretary)), have organized was intended to establish stronger links between the biology and physics communities on the DNA front. The relationships between them were never easy. In 1997, Adrian published a paper in Physics Today ('Harness the Hubris') summarizing his thoughts about the main obstacles for a successful collaboration. The bottom line of that article was that physicists must seriously learn biology before exploring it and even having an interpreter, a friend or co-worker, who will be cooperating with you and translating the problems of biology into a physical language, may not be enough. He started his story with a joke about a physicist asking a biologist: 'I want to study the brain. Tell me something about it!' Biologist: 'First, the brain consists of two parts, and..' Physicist: 'Stop. You have told me too much.' Adrian listed a few direct avenues where physicists' contributions may be particularly welcome. This gentle and elegantly written paper caused, however, a stormy reaction from Bob Austin (Princeton), published together with Adrian's notes, accusing Adrian of forbidding physicists to attack big questions in biology straightaway. Twelve years have passed and many new developments have taken place in the biologist-physicist interaction. This was something I addressed in my opening conference speech, with my position lying somewhere inbetween Parsegian's and Austin's, which is briefly outlined here. I will first recall certain precepts or 'dogmas' that fly in the air like Valkyries, poisoning those relationships. Since the early seventies when I was a first year Ph

  8. Biology-inspired AMO physics (United States)

    Mathur, Deepak


    This Topical Review presents an overview of increasingly robust interconnects that are being established between atomic, molecular and optical (AMO) physics and the life sciences. AMO physics, outgrowing its historical role as a facilitator—a provider of optical methodologies, for instance—now seeks to partner biology in its quest to link systems-level descriptions of biological entities to insights based on molecular processes. Of course, perspectives differ when AMO physicists and biologists consider various processes. For instance, while AMO physicists link molecular properties and dynamics to potential energy surfaces, these have to give way to energy landscapes in considerations of protein dynamics. But there are similarities also: tunnelling and non-adiabatic transitions occur both in protein dynamics and in molecular dynamics. We bring to the fore some such differences and similarities; we consider imaging techniques based on AMO concepts, like 4D fluorescence microscopy which allows access to the dynamics of cellular processes, multiphoton microscopy which offers a built-in confocality, and microscopy with femtosecond laser beams to saturate the suppression of fluorescence in spatially controlled fashion so as to circumvent the diffraction limit. Beyond imaging, AMO physics contributes with optical traps that probe the mechanical and dynamical properties of single ‘live’ cells, highlighting differences between healthy and diseased cells. Trap methodologies have also begun to probe the dynamics governing of neural stem cells adhering to each other to form neurospheres and, with squeezed light to probe sub-diffusive motion of yeast cells. Strong field science contributes not only by providing a source of energetic electrons and γ-rays via laser-plasma accelerations schemes, but also via filamentation and supercontinuum generation, enabling mainstream collision physics into play in diverse processes like DNA damage induced by low-energy collisions to

  9. Biologically Inspired Purification and Dispersion of SWCNTs (United States)

    Feeback, Daniel L.; Clarke, Mark S.; Nikolaev, Pavel


    A biologically inspired method has been developed for (1) separating single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) from other materials (principally, amorphous carbon and metal catalysts) in raw production batches and (2) dispersing the SWCNTs as individual particles (in contradistinction to ropes and bundles) in suspension, as required for a number of applications. Prior methods of purification and dispersal of SWCNTs involve, variously, harsh physical processes (e.g., sonication) or harsh chemical processes (e.g., acid reflux). These processes do not completely remove the undesired materials and do not disperse bundles and ropes into individual suspended SWCNTs. Moreover, these processes cut long SWCNTs into shorter pieces, yielding typical nanotube lengths between 150 and 250 nm. In contrast, the present method does not involve harsh physical or chemical processes. The method involves the use of biologically derived dispersal agents (BDDAs) in an aqueous solution that is mechanically homogenized (but not sonicated) and centrifuged. The dense solid material remaining after centrifugation is resuspended by vortexing in distilled water, yielding an aqueous suspension of individual, separated SWCNTs having lengths from about 10 to about 15 microns.

  10. Biologically inspired technologies in NASA's morphing project (United States)

    McGowan, Anna-Maria R.; Cox, David E.; Lazos, Barry S.; Waszak, Martin R.; Raney, David L.; Siochi, Emilie J.; Pao, S. Paul


    For centuries, biology has provided fertile ground for hypothesis, discovery, and inspiration. Time-tested methods used in nature are being used as a basis for several research studies conducted at the NASA Langley Research Center as a part of Morphing Project, which develops and assesses breakthrough vehicle technologies. These studies range from low drag airfoil design guided by marine and avian morphologies to soaring techniques inspired by birds and the study of small flexible wing vehicles. Biology often suggests unconventional yet effective approaches such as non-planar wings, dynamic soaring, exploiting aeroelastic effects, collaborative control, flapping, and fibrous active materials. These approaches and other novel technologies for future flight vehicles are being studied in NASA's Morphing Project. This paper will discuss recent findings in the aeronautics-based, biologically-inspired research in the project.

  11. Biologically Inspired Intercellular Slot Synchronization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Tyrrell


    Full Text Available The present article develops a decentralized interbase station slot synchronization algorithm suitable for cellular mobile communication systems. The proposed cellular firefly synchronization (CelFSync algorithm is derived from the theory of pulse-coupled oscillators, common to describe synchronization phenomena in biological systems, such as the spontaneous synchronization of fireflies. In order to maintain synchronization among base stations (BSs, even when there is no direct link between adjacent BSs, some selected user terminals (UTs participate in the network synchronization process. Synchronization emerges by exchanging two distinct synchronization words, one transmitted by BSs and the other by active UTs, without any a priori assumption on the initial timing misalignments of BSs and UTs. In large-scale networks with inter-BS site distances up to a few kilometers, propagation delays severely affect the attainable timing accuracy of CelFSync. We show that by an appropriate combination of CelFSync with the timing advance procedure, which aligns uplink transmission of UTs to arrive simultaneously at the BS, a timing accuracy within a fraction of the inter-BS propagation delay is retained.

  12. Biologically inspired self-organizing networks

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Naoki WAKAMIYA; Kenji LEIBNITZ; Masayuki MURATA


    Information networks are becoming more and more complex to accommodate a continuously increasing amount of traffic and networked devices, as well as having to cope with a growing diversity of operating environments and applications. Therefore, it is foreseeable that future information networks will frequently face unexpected problems, some of which could lead to the complete collapse of a network. To tackle this problem, recent attempts have been made to design novel network architectures which achieve a high level of scalability, adaptability, and robustness by taking inspiration from self-organizing biological systems. The objective of this paper is to discuss biologically inspired networking technologies.

  13. How physics can inspire biology (United States)

    Kornyshev, Alexei


    In July 1997 Adrian Parsegian, a biophysicist at the National Institutes of Health in the US and a former president of the Biophysical Society, published an article in Physics Today in which he outlined his thoughts about the main obstacles to a happy marriage between physics and biology. Parsegian started his article with a joke about a physicist talking to his biology-trained friend.

  14. Biologically Inspired Micro-Flight Research (United States)

    Raney, David L.; Waszak, Martin R.


    Natural fliers demonstrate a diverse array of flight capabilities, many of which are poorly understood. NASA has established a research project to explore and exploit flight technologies inspired by biological systems. One part of this project focuses on dynamic modeling and control of micro aerial vehicles that incorporate flexible wing structures inspired by natural fliers such as insects, hummingbirds and bats. With a vast number of potential civil and military applications, micro aerial vehicles represent an emerging sector of the aerospace market. This paper describes an ongoing research activity in which mechanization and control concepts for biologically inspired micro aerial vehicles are being explored. Research activities focusing on a flexible fixed- wing micro aerial vehicle design and a flapping-based micro aerial vehicle concept are presented.

  15. A Biologically Inspired CMOS Image Sensor

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sarkar, M.


    Biological systems are a source of inspiration in the development of small autonomous sensor nodes. The two major types of optical vision systems found in nature are the single aperture human eye and the compound eye of insects. The latter are among the most compact and smallest vision sensors. The

  16. Biology-Inspired Autonomous Control (United States)


    of, and perhaps will not be tolerated in, manmade critical systems. Although this paper does not directly address questions of ethics associated...political, ethical , and moral issues associated with the use of autonomous systems in warfare will be debated long after the technology hurdles to...accessible discussion on the interplay of biochemistry, genetics and embryology in animal evolution; Wagner, 2005 describes biological concepts of

  17. A biologically inspired MANET architecture (United States)

    Kershenbaum, Aaron; Pappas, Vasileios; Lee, Kang-Won; Lio, Pietro; Sadler, Brian; Verma, Dinesh


    Mobile Ad-Hoc Networks (MANETs), that do not rely on pre-existing infrastructure and that can adapt rapidly to changes in their environment, are coming into increasingly wide use in military applications. At the same time, the large computing power and memory available today even for small, mobile devices, allows us to build extremely large, sophisticated and complex networks. Such networks, however, and the software controlling them are potentially vulnerable to catastrophic failures because of their size and complexity. Biological networks have many of these same characteristics and are potentially subject to the same problems. But in successful organisms, these biological networks do in fact function well so that the organism can survive. In this paper, we present a MANET architecture developed based on a feature, called homeostasis, widely observed in biological networks but not ordinarily seen in computer networks. This feature allows the network to switch to an alternate mode of operation under stress or attack and then return to the original mode of operation after the problem has been resolved. We explore the potential benefits such an architecture has, principally in terms of the ability to survive radical changes in its environment using an illustrative example.

  18. Biology-inspired Architecture for Situation Management (United States)

    Jones, Kennie H.; Lodding, Kenneth N.; Olariu, Stephan; Wilson, Larry; Xin, Chunsheng


    Situation Management is a rapidly developing science combining new techniques for data collection with advanced methods of data fusion to facilitate the process leading to correct decisions prescribing action. Current research focuses on reducing increasing amounts of diverse data to knowledge used by decision makers and on reducing time between observations, decisions and actions. No new technology is more promising for increasing the diversity and fidelity of observations than sensor networks. However, current research on sensor networks concentrates on a centralized network architecture. We believe this trend will not realize the full potential of situation management. We propose a new architecture modeled after biological ecosystems where motes are autonomous and intelligent, yet cooperate with local neighborhoods. Providing a layered approach, they sense and act independently when possible, and cooperate with neighborhoods when necessary. The combination of their local actions results in global effects. While situation management research is currently dominated by military applications, advances envisioned for industrial and business applications have similar requirements. NASA has requirements for intelligent and autonomous systems in future missions that can benefit from advances in situation management. We describe requirements for the Integrated Vehicle Health Management program where our biology-inspired architecture provides a layered approach and decisions can be made at the proper level to improve safety, reduce costs, and improve efficiency in making diagnostic and prognostic assessments of the structural integrity, aerodynamic characteristics, and operation of aircraft.

  19. Additive manufacturing of biologically-inspired materials. (United States)

    Studart, André R


    Additive manufacturing (AM) technologies offer an attractive pathway towards the fabrication of functional materials featuring complex heterogeneous architectures inspired by biological systems. In this paper, recent research on the use of AM approaches to program the local chemical composition, structure and properties of biologically-inspired materials is reviewed. A variety of structural motifs found in biological composites have been successfully emulated in synthetic systems using inkjet-based, direct-writing, stereolithography and slip casting technologies. The replication in synthetic systems of design principles underlying such structural motifs has enabled the fabrication of lightweight cellular materials, strong and tough composites, soft robots and autonomously shaping structures with unprecedented properties and functionalities. Pushing the current limits of AM technologies in future research should bring us closer to the manufacturing capabilities of living organisms, opening the way for the digital fabrication of advanced materials with superior performance, lower environmental impact and new functionalities.

  20. Biologically inspired coupled antenna beampattern design

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Akcakaya, Murat; Nehorai, Arye, E-mail: makcak2@ese.wustl.ed, E-mail: nehorai@ese.wustl.ed [Department of Electrical and Systems Engineering, Washington University in St Louis, St Louis, MO 63130 (United States)


    We propose to design a small-size transmission-coupled antenna array, and corresponding radiation pattern, having high performance inspired by the female Ormia ochracea's coupled ears. For reproduction purposes, the female Ormia is able to locate male crickets' call accurately despite the small distance between its ears compared with the incoming wavelength. This phenomenon has been explained by the mechanical coupling between the Ormia's ears, which has been modeled by a pair of differential equations. In this paper, we first solve these differential equations governing the Ormia ochracea's ear response, and convert the response to the pre-specified radio frequencies. We then apply the converted response of the biological coupling in the array factor of a uniform linear array composed of finite-length dipole antennas, and also include the undesired electromagnetic coupling due to the proximity of the elements. Moreover, we propose an algorithm to optimally choose the biologically inspired coupling for maximum array performance. In our numerical examples, we compute the radiation intensity of the designed system for binomial and uniform ordinary end-fire arrays, and demonstrate the improvement in the half-power beamwidth, sidelobe suppression and directivity of the radiation pattern due to the biologically inspired coupling.

  1. A Biologically Inspired CMOS Image Sensor

    CERN Document Server

    Sarkar, Mukul


    Biological systems are a source of inspiration in the development of small autonomous sensor nodes. The two major types of optical vision systems found in nature are the single aperture human eye and the compound eye of insects. The latter are among the most compact and smallest vision sensors. The eye is a compound of individual lenses with their own photoreceptor arrays.  The visual system of insects allows them to fly with a limited intelligence and brain processing power. A CMOS image sensor replicating the perception of vision in insects is discussed and designed in this book for industrial (machine vision) and medical applications. The CMOS metal layer is used to create an embedded micro-polarizer able to sense polarization information. This polarization information is shown to be useful in applications like real time material classification and autonomous agent navigation. Further the sensor is equipped with in pixel analog and digital memories which allow variation of the dynamic range and in-pixel b...

  2. Biologically inspired robots as artificial inspectors (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph


    Imagine an inspector conducting an NDE on an aircraft where you notice something is different about him - he is not real but rather he is a robot. Your first reaction would probably be to say 'it's unbelievable but he looks real' just as you would react to an artificial flower that is a good imitation. This science fiction scenario could become a reality at the trend in the development of biologically inspired technologies, and terms like artificial intelligence, artificial muscles, artificial vision and numerous others are increasingly becoming common engineering tools. For many years, the trend has been to automate processes in order to increase the efficiency of performing redundant tasks where various systems have been developed to deal with specific production line requirements. Realizing that some parts are too complex or delicate to handle in small quantities with a simple automatic system, robotic mechanisms were developed. Aircraft inspection has benefitted from this evolving technology where manipulators and crawlers are developed for rapid and reliable inspection. Advancement in robotics towards making them autonomous and possibly look like human, can potentially address the need to inspect structures that are beyond the capability of today's technology with configuration that are not predetermined. The operation of these robots may take place at harsh or hazardous environments that are too dangerous for human presence. Making such robots is becoming increasingly feasible and in this paper the state of the art will be reviewed.

  3. Biologically inspired autonomouse system; Seibutsugata jiritsu system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yuta, S. [Tsukuba Univ., Ibaraki (Japan)


    The intelligence robot was begun to try to make up a machine to imitate the human intelligent actions as a model of human thoughts. However, robots created with the results of traditional artificial intelligence based on the logical knowledge impression and logic judgement have been found to be unable to realize the usual actions conducted by humans and animals even though having superior brains or remembrances. Research on `The biological inspired autonomous robots` in the intelligence robots, aims to peruse a method to realize on a machine not for high class intelligence capable to execute logical thoughts down by human but for intelligence corresponding to ability response to environment autonomously and to live in a given environment which is had even by animals except human being. Here is examined on the non-human biological type robot and its intelligence under a center of research on the biological inspired autonomous system in the intelligence robots, and is outlined on their research field. 2 refs., 1 fig.

  4. Biologically Inspired Flagella-Templated Silica Nanotubes (United States)

    Jo, Wonjin

    The desire and need for various types of nanostructures have been met with challenges of feasibility, reproducibility, and long fabrication time. To work towards improved bottom-up methods of nanofabrication, bacterial flagella are particularly attractive bio-templates for nanotubes due to their tubular structures and small inner and outer diameters. In this work, flagella isolated from Salmonella typhimurium are used as bio-templates to fabricate silica mineralized nanotubes. The process involves as well-controlled hydrolysis and condensation reaction with aminopropyltriethoxysilane (APTES), followed by the addition of tetraethoxysilane (TEOS). By controlling the concentration of TEOS and the reaction time, a simple and precise method is developed for creating silica-mineralized flagella nanotubes (SMFNs) with various thicknesses of the silica layer. In addition, the SMFNs are further modified to multifunctional nanotubes by coating metal nanoparticles (NPs) or metal oxide NPs such as gold, palladium, and iron oxide. The metallized SMFNs are achieved through reactions including reductive metallization or oxidative hydrolysis. The results from these studies provide evidence for the complete coating of SMFNs with uniform metal NP sizes and high surface area coverage. The metallized SMFNs are found to be electrically conductive along their network structures. The current-voltage characteristics show remarkably improved electrical conductivities depending on the types of metal NPs loading and SMFN networks concentration. The biologically inspired SMFNs with metal loading will allow have controlled electrical properties that can lead to the potential of creating unique and precise nanoelectronic materials. Lastly, the randomly entangled SMFNs are characterized to demonstrate their capabilities for hydrophilic and hydrophobic surface applications.

  5. Biological Inspiration in Human Centred Robotics

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    HU Huo-sheng; LIU Jin-dong; Calderon Carlos A


    Human centred robotics (HCR) concerns with the development of various kinds of intelligent systems and robots that will be used in environments coexisting with humans. These systems and robots will be interactive and useful assistants/companions for people in different ages, situations, activities and environments in order to improve the quality of life. This paper presents the autors' current research work toward the development of advanced theory and technologies for HCR applications, based on inspiration from biological systems. More specifically, both bio-mimetic system modelling and robot learning by imitation are discussed respectively, and some preliminary results are demonstrated.

  6. Sensory architectures for biologically inspired autonomous robotics. (United States)

    Higgins, C M


    Engineers have a lot to gain from studying biology. The study of biological neural systems alone provides numerous examples of computational systems that are far more complex than any man-made system and perform real-time sensory and motor tasks in a manner that humbles the most advanced artificial systems. Despite the evolutionary genesis of these systems and the vast apparent differences between species, there are common design strategies employed by biological systems that span taxa, and engineers would do well to emulate these strategies. However, biologically-inspired computational architectures, which are continuous-time and parallel in nature, do not map well onto conventional processors, which are discrete-time and serial in operation. Rather, an implementation technology that is capable of directly realizing the layered parallel structure and nonlinear elements employed by neurobiology is required for power- and space-efficient implementation. Custom neuromorphic hardware meets these criteria and yields low-power dedicated sensory systems that are small, light, and ideal for autonomous robot applications. As examples of how this technology is applied, this article describes both a low-level neuromorphic hardware emulation of an elementary visual motion detector, and a large-scale, system-level spatial motion integration system.

  7. Biologically inspired emotion recognition from speech (United States)

    Caponetti, Laura; Buscicchio, Cosimo Alessandro; Castellano, Giovanna


    Emotion recognition has become a fundamental task in human-computer interaction systems. In this article, we propose an emotion recognition approach based on biologically inspired methods. Specifically, emotion classification is performed using a long short-term memory (LSTM) recurrent neural network which is able to recognize long-range dependencies between successive temporal patterns. We propose to represent data using features derived from two different models: mel-frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCC) and the Lyon cochlear model. In the experimental phase, results obtained from the LSTM network and the two different feature sets are compared, showing that features derived from the Lyon cochlear model give better recognition results in comparison with those obtained with the traditional MFCC representation.

  8. Biologically inspired emotion recognition from speech

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Buscicchio Cosimo


    Full Text Available Abstract Emotion recognition has become a fundamental task in human-computer interaction systems. In this article, we propose an emotion recognition approach based on biologically inspired methods. Specifically, emotion classification is performed using a long short-term memory (LSTM recurrent neural network which is able to recognize long-range dependencies between successive temporal patterns. We propose to represent data using features derived from two different models: mel-frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCC and the Lyon cochlear model. In the experimental phase, results obtained from the LSTM network and the two different feature sets are compared, showing that features derived from the Lyon cochlear model give better recognition results in comparison with those obtained with the traditional MFCC representation.

  9. Synthetic biology, inspired by synthetic chemistry. (United States)

    Malinova, V; Nallani, M; Meier, W P; Sinner, E K


    The topic synthetic biology appears still as an 'empty basket to be filled'. However, there is already plenty of claims and visions, as well as convincing research strategies about the theme of synthetic biology. First of all, synthetic biology seems to be about the engineering of biology - about bottom-up and top-down approaches, compromising complexity versus stability of artificial architectures, relevant in biology. Synthetic biology accounts for heterogeneous approaches towards minimal and even artificial life, the engineering of biochemical pathways on the organismic level, the modelling of molecular processes and finally, the combination of synthetic with nature-derived materials and architectural concepts, such as a cellular membrane. Still, synthetic biology is a discipline, which embraces interdisciplinary attempts in order to have a profound, scientific base to enable the re-design of nature and to compose architectures and processes with man-made matter. We like to give an overview about the developments in the field of synthetic biology, regarding polymer-based analogs of cellular membranes and what questions can be answered by applying synthetic polymer science towards the smallest unit in life, namely a cell.

  10. Bits from Brains for Biologically-Inspired Computing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael eWibral


    Full Text Available Inspiration for artificial biologically-inspired computing is often drawn from neural systems. This article shows how to analyze neural systems using information theory with the aim of obtaining constraints that help to identify the algorithms run by neural systems and the information they represent. Algorithms and representations identified this way may then guide the design of biologically inspired computing systems. The material covered includes the necessary introduction to information theory and to the estimation of information theoretic quantities from neural recordings. We then show how to analyze the information encoded in a system about its environment, and also discuss recent methodological developments on the question of how much information each agent carries about the environment either uniquely, or redundantly or synergistically together with others. Last, we introduce the framework of local information dynamics, where information processing is partitioned into component processes of information storage, transfer, and modification -- locally in space and time. We close by discussing example applications of these measures to neural data and other complex systems.

  11. Dynamical Systems and Control Theory Inspired by Molecular Biology (United States)


    in both bacterial and eukaryotic signaling pathways. A common theme in the systems biology literature is that certain systems whose output variables...AFRL-OSR-VA-TR-2014-0282 DYNAMICAL SYSTEMS AND CONTROL THEORY INSPIRED BY MOLECULAR BIOLOGY Eduardo Sontag RUTGERS THE STATE UNIVERSITY OF NEW JERSEY...Standard Form 298 (Re . 8-98) v Prescribed by ANSI Std. Z39.18 DYNAMICAL SYSTEMS AND CONTROL THEORY INSPIRED BY MOLECULAR BIOLOGY AFOSR FA9550-11-1-0247

  12. Complex biological and bio-inspired systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ecke, Robert E [Los Alamos National Laboratory


    The understanding and characterization ofthe fundamental processes of the function of biological systems underpins many of the important challenges facing American society, from the pathology of infectious disease and the efficacy ofvaccines, to the development of materials that mimic biological functionality and deliver exceptional and novel structural and dynamic properties. These problems are fundamentally complex, involving many interacting components and poorly understood bio-chemical kinetics. We use the basic science of statistical physics, kinetic theory, cellular bio-chemistry, soft-matter physics, and information science to develop cell level models and explore the use ofbiomimetic materials. This project seeks to determine how cell level processes, such as response to mechanical stresses, chemical constituents and related gradients, and other cell signaling mechanisms, integrate and combine to create a functioning organism. The research focuses on the basic physical processes that take place at different levels ofthe biological organism: the basic role of molecular and chemical interactions are investigated, the dynamics of the DNA-molecule and its phylogenetic role are examined and the regulatory networks of complex biochemical processes are modeled. These efforts may lead to early warning algorithms ofpathogen outbreaks, new bio-sensors to detect hazards from pathomic viruses to chemical contaminants. Other potential applications include the development of efficient bio-fuel alternative-energy processes and the exploration ofnovel materials for energy usages. Finally, we use the notion of 'coarse-graining,' which is a method for averaging over less important degrees of freedom to develop computational models to predict cell function and systems-level response to disease, chemical stress, or biological pathomic agents. This project supports Energy Security, Threat Reduction, and the missions of the DOE Office of Science through its efforts to

  13. Biologically inspired highly efficient buoyancy engine (United States)

    Akle, Barbar; Habchi, Wassim; Abdelnour, Rita; Blottman, John, III; Leo, Donald


    Undersea distributed networked sensor systems require a miniaturization of platforms and a means of both spatial and temporal persistence. One aspect of this system is the necessity to modulate sensor depth for optimal positioning and station-keeping. Current approaches involve pneumatic bladders or electrolysis; both require mechanical subsystems and consume significant power. These are not suitable for the miniaturization of sensor platforms. Presented in this study is a novel biologically inspired method that relies on ionic motion and osmotic pressures to displace a volume of water from the ocean into and out of the proposed buoyancy engine. At a constant device volume, the displaced water will alter buoyancy leading to either sinking or floating. The engine is composed of an enclosure sided on the ocean's end by a Nafion ionomer and by a flexible membrane separating the water from a gas enclosure. Two electrodes are placed one inside the enclosure and the other attached to the engine on the outside. The semi-permeable membrane Nafion allows water motion in and out of the enclosure while blocking anions from being transferred. The two electrodes generate local concentration changes of ions upon the application of an electrical field; these changes lead to osmotic pressures and hence the transfer of water through the semi-permeable membrane. Some aquatic organisms such as pelagic crustacean perform this buoyancy control using an exchange of ions through their tissue to modulate its density relative to the ambient sea water. In this paper, the authors provide an experimental proof of concept of this buoyancy engine. The efficiency of changing the engine's buoyancy is calculated and optimized as a function of electrode surface area. For example electrodes made of a 3mm diameter Ag/AgCl proved to transfer approximately 4mm3 of water consuming 4 Joules of electrical energy. The speed of displacement is optimized as a function of the surface area of the Nafion

  14. Self-organization, embodiment, and biologically inspired robotics. (United States)

    Pfeifer, Rolf; Lungarella, Max; Iida, Fumiya


    Robotics researchers increasingly agree that ideas from biology and self-organization can strongly benefit the design of autonomous robots. Biological organisms have evolved to perform and survive in a world characterized by rapid changes, high uncertainty, indefinite richness, and limited availability of information. Industrial robots, in contrast, operate in highly controlled environments with no or very little uncertainty. Although many challenges remain, concepts from biologically inspired (bio-inspired) robotics will eventually enable researchers to engineer machines for the real world that possess at least some of the desirable properties of biological organisms, such as adaptivity, robustness, versatility, and agility.

  15. Platensimycin and platencin: Inspirations for chemistry, biology, enzymology, and medicine. (United States)

    Rudolf, Jeffrey D; Dong, Liao-Bin; Shen, Ben


    Natural products have served as the main source of drugs and drug leads, and natural products produced by microorganisms are one of the most prevalent sources of clinical antibiotics. Their unparalleled structural and chemical diversities provide a basis to investigate fundamental biological processes while providing access to a tremendous amount of chemical space. There is a pressing need for novel antibiotics with new mode of actions to combat the growing challenge of multidrug resistant pathogens. This review begins with the pioneering discovery and biological activities of platensimycin (PTM) and platencin (PTN), two antibacterial natural products isolated from Streptomyces platensis. The elucidation of their unique biochemical mode of action, structure-activity relationships, and pharmacokinetics is presented to highlight key aspects of their biological activities. It then presents an overview of how microbial genomics has impacted the field of PTM and PTN and revealed paradigm-shifting discoveries in terpenoid biosynthesis, fatty acid metabolism, and antibiotic and antidiabetic therapies. It concludes with a discussion covering the future perspectives of PTM and PTN in regard to natural products discovery, bacterial diterpenoid biosynthesis, and the pharmaceutical promise of PTM and PTN as antibiotics and for the treatment of metabolic disorders. PTM and PTN have inspired new discoveries in chemistry, biology, enzymology, and medicine and will undoubtedly continue to do so.

  16. Patented Biologically-inspired Technological Innovations: A Twenty Year View

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Richard H. C. Bonser


    Publication rate of patents can be a useful measure of innovation and productivity in fields of science and technology. To assess the growth in industrially-important research, I conducted an appraisal of patents published between 1985 and 2005 on online databases using keywords chosen to select technologies arising as a result of biological inspiration. Whilst the total number of patents increased over the period examined, those with biomimetic content had increased faster as a proportion of total patent publications. Logistic regression analysis reveals that we may be a little over half way through an initial innovation cycle inspired by biological systems.

  17. Biologically inspired LED lens from cuticular nanostructures of firefly lantern. (United States)

    Kim, Jae-Jun; Lee, Youngseop; Kim, Ha Gon; Choi, Ki-Ju; Kweon, Hee-Seok; Park, Seongchong; Jeong, Ki-Hun


    Cuticular nanostructures found in insects effectively manage light for light polarization, structural color, or optical index matching within an ultrathin natural scale. These nanostructures are mainly dedicated to manage incoming light and recently inspired many imaging and display applications. A bioluminescent organ, such as a firefly lantern, helps to out-couple light from the body in a highly efficient fashion for delivering strong optical signals in sexual communication. However, the cuticular nanostructures, except the light-producing reactions, have not been well investigated for physical principles and engineering biomimetics. Here we report a unique observation of high-transmission nanostructures on a firefly lantern and its biological inspiration for highly efficient LED illumination. Both numerical and experimental results clearly reveal high transmission through the nanostructures inspired from the lantern cuticle. The nanostructures on an LED lens surface were fabricated by using a large-area nanotemplating and reconfigurable nanomolding with heat-induced shear thinning. The biologically inspired LED lens, distinct from a smooth surface lens, substantially increases light transmission over visible ranges, comparable to conventional antireflection coating. This biological inspiration can offer new opportunities for increasing the light extraction efficiency of high-power LED packages.

  18. The scientific study of inspiration in the creative process: Challenges and opportunities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victoria C. Oleynick


    Full Text Available Inspiration is a motivational state that compels individuals to bring ideas into fruition. Creators have long argued that inspiration is important to the creative process, but until recently, scientists have not investigated this claim. In this article, we review challenges to the study of creative inspiration, as well as solutions to these challenges afforded by theoretical and empirical work on inspiration over the past decade. First, we discuss the problem of definitional ambiguity, which has been addressed through an integrative process of construct conceptualization. Second, we discuss the challenge of how to operationalize inspiration. This challenge has been overcome by the development and validation of the Inspiration Scale, which may be used to assess trait or state inspiration. Third, we address ambiguity regarding how inspiration differs from related concepts (creativity, insight, positive affect by discussing discriminant validity. Next, we discuss the preconception that inspiration is less important than perspiration (effort, and we review empirical evidence that inspiration and effort both play important—but different—roles in the creative process. Finally, with many challenges overcome, we argue that the foundation is now set for a new generation of research focused on neural underpinnings. We discuss potential challenges to and opportunities for the neuroscientific study of inspiration. A better understanding of the biological basis of inspiration will illuminate the process through which creative ideas fire the soul, such that individuals are compelled to transform ideas into products and solutions that may benefit society.

  19. Biologically-Inspired Water Propulsion System

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Andrzej Sioma


    Most propulsion systems of vehicles travelling in the aquatic environment are equipped with propellers.Observations of nature,however,show that the absolute majority of organisms travel through water using wave motion,paddling or using water jet power.Inspired by these observations of nature,an innovative propulsion system working in aquatic environment was developed.This paper presents the design of the water propulsion system.Particular attention was paid to the use of paddling techniques and water jet power.A group of organisms that use those mechanisms to travel through water was selected and analysed.The results of research were used in the design of a propulsion system modelled simultaneously on two methods of movement in the aquatic environment.A method for modelling a propulsion system using a combination of the two solutions and the result were described.A conceptual design and a prototype constructed based on the solution were presented.With respect to the solution developed,studies and analyses of selected parameters of the prototype were described.

  20. A Biologically-Inspired Symmetric Bidirectional Switch (United States)

    Song, Kahye; Chang, Shyr-Shea; Roper, Marcus; Kim, Hyejeong; Lee, Sang Joon


    Stimuli-sensitive hydrogels have been intensively studied because of their potential applications in drug delivery, cell culture, and actuator design. Although hydrogels with directed unidirectional response, i.e. capable of bending actuated by different chemical components reaction in response to several stimuli including water and electric fields, these hydrogels are capable of being actuated in one direction only by the stimulus. By contrast the challenge of building a device that is capable of responding to the same cue (in this case a temperature gradient) to bend in either direction remains unmet. Here, inspired by the structure of pine cone scales, we design a temperature-sensitive hydrogel with bending directed an imposed fishing line. The layers with same PNIPAAm always shrinks in response to the heat. Even the layers made with different chemical property, bends away from a warm surface, whether the warm surface is applied at its upper or lower boundary. To design the bending hydrogel we exploited the coupled responses of the hydrogel; a fishing line intercalating structure and change its construction. In addition to revealing a new capability of stimulus sensitive hydrogels, our study gives insight into the structural features of pine cone bending. PMID:28068391

  1. Biologically Inspired Robots to Assist Areonauts on the Martian Surface (United States)

    Scott, G. P.; Saaj, C. M.

    Long before humans set foot on the surface of Mars, significant exploration of the surface will have been completed. Orbital spacecraft have certainly helped provide information about the surface to date, but significant advances are made through surface-based exploration. Not only does this include the Viking landers of years past, but also current and next generation mobile robots traversing the surface with scientific experiments for humans to better learn about this mostly unexplored environment. Many robotic vehicles have been proposed in recent years to assist astronauts on planetary surfaces. Only a few of these vehicles, or some aspects therein, have been inspired from biological creatures. With regards to the vehicle's locomotion system, looking into biologically inspired concepts is incredibly important because of the expectation of these astronauts exploring more complex terrain than current wheeled robotic explorers have yet traversed. This paper will review a number of robotic systems designed to assist Mars areonauts (astronauts specifically exploring Mars) before proposing a multi-purpose legged microrover assistant. This vehicle has a biologically inspired locomotion system which provides the capability to follow the areonauts over the most complex Martian terrain, or even traverse areas too complex for the areonaut to negotiate, in order to perform on-the-spot scientific experimentation as needed. The results of the biologically inspired vehicle's capability to traverse Mars terrain, both with regards to tractive capability in soil and ability to access more hostile terrain than its wheeled or tracked counterparts, will also be presented.

  2. A Project-Based Biologically-Inspired Robotics Module (United States)

    Crowder, R. M.; Zauner, K.-P.


    The design of any robotic system requires input from engineers from a variety of technical fields. This paper describes a project-based module, "Biologically-Inspired Robotics," that is offered to Electronics and Computer Science students at the University of Southampton, U.K. The overall objective of the module is for student groups to…

  3. Biologically Inspired Optimization of Building District Heating Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leiming Shang


    Full Text Available In this paper we show that a biologically inspired model can be successfully applied to problems of building optimal district heating network. The model is based on physiological observations of the true slime mold Physarumpolycephalum, but can also be used for path-finding in the complicated networks of mazes and road maps. A strategy of optimally building heating distribution network was guided by the model and a well-tuned ant colony algorithm and genetic algorithm. The results indicate that although there are not large-scale efficiency savings to be made, the biologically inspired amoeboid movement model is capable of finding results of equal or better optimality than a comparable ant colony algorithm and genetic algorithm.

  4. Semiconductor Devices Inspired By and Integrated With Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rogers, John [University of Illinois


    Biology is curved, soft and elastic; silicon wafers are not. Semiconductor technologies that can bridge this gap in form and mechanics will create new opportunities in devices that adopt biologically inspired designs or require intimate integration with the human body. This talk describes the development of ideas for electronics that offer the performance of state-of-the-art, wafer- based systems but with the mechanical properties of a rubber band. We explain the underlying materials science and mechanics of these approaches, and illustrate their use in (1) bio- integrated, ‘tissue-like’ electronics with unique capabilities for mapping cardiac and neural electrophysiology, and (2) bio-inspired, ‘eyeball’ cameras with exceptional imaging properties enabled by curvilinear, Petzval designs.

  5. Artificial heartbeat: design and fabrication of a biologically inspired pump. (United States)

    Walters, Peter; Lewis, Amy; Stinchcombe, Andrew; Stephenson, Robert; Ieropoulos, Ioannis


    We present a biologically inspired actuator exhibiting a novel pumping action. The design of the 'artificial heartbeat' actuator is inspired by physical principles derived from the structure and function of the human heart. The actuator employs NiTi artificial muscles and is powered by electrical energy generated by microbial fuel cells (MFCs). We describe the design and fabrication of the actuator and report the results of tests conducted to characterize its performance. This is the first artificial muscle-driven pump to be powered by MFCs fed on human urine. Results are presented in terms of the peak pumping pressure generated by the actuator, as well as for the volume of fluid transferred, when the actuator was powered by energy stored in a capacitor bank, which was charged by 24 MFCs fed on urine. The results demonstrate the potential for the artificial heartbeat actuator to be employed as a fluid circulation pump in future generations of MFC-powered robots ('EcoBots') that extract energy from organic waste. We also envisage that the actuator could in the future form part of a bio-robotic artwork or 'bio-automaton' that could help increase public awareness of research in robotics, bio-energy and biologically inspired design.

  6. Editorial:Mechanics of biological and bio-inspired materials%Editorial: Mechanics of biological and bio-inspired materials

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Baohua Jia


    The field of mechanics of biological and bio-inspired materials underwent an exciting development over the past several years,which made it stand at the cutting edge of both engineering mechanics and biomechanics.As an intriguing interdisciplinary research field,it aims at elucidating the fundamental principles in nature's design of strong,multi-functional and smart Materials by focusing on the assembly,deformation,stability and failure of the materials.These principles should have wide applications in not only material sciences and mechanical engineering but also biomedical engineering.For instance,the knowledge in Mechanical principles of biological materials is very helpful for addressing some major challenges in material sciences and engineering.They also have the potential to provide quantitative understanding about how forces and deformation affect human being's health,diseases and treatment at tissue,cellular and molecular levels.This special subject on "mechanics of biological and bio-inspired materials" collects a few studies on recent development by leading scientists in this field.The biological materials or systems in these studies include cell,cytoskeleton (e.g.,microtubulus,intermediate filaments),lipid molecules and composite system of lipid and nanoparticle,tissue,and biological attachment systems,etc.

  7. Biologically-inspired Learning in Pulsed Neural Networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lehmann, Torsten; Woodburn, Robin


    Self-learning chips to implement many popular ANN (artificial neural network) algorithms are very difficult to design. We explain why this is so and say what lessons previous work teaches us in the design of self-learning systems. We offer a contribution to the `biologically-inspired' approach......, explaining what we mean by this term and providing an example of a robust, self-learning design that can solve simple classical-conditioning tasks. We give details of the design of individual circuits to perform component functions, which can then be combined into a network to solve the task. We argue...

  8. 7th World Congress on Nature and Biologically Inspired Computing

    CERN Document Server

    Engelbrecht, Andries; Abraham, Ajith; Plessis, Mathys; Snášel, Václav; Muda, Azah


    World Congress on Nature and Biologically Inspired Computing (NaBIC) is organized to discuss the state-of-the-art as well as to address various issues with respect to Nurturing Intelligent Computing Towards Advancement of Machine Intelligence. This Volume contains the papers presented in the Seventh World Congress (NaBIC’15) held in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa during December 01-03, 2015. The 39 papers presented in this Volume were carefully reviewed and selected. The Volume would be a valuable reference to researchers, students and practitioners in the computational intelligence field.

  9. Kirigami artificial muscles with complex biologically inspired morphologies (United States)

    Sareh, Sina; Rossiter, Jonathan


    In this paper we present bio-inspired smart structures which exploit the actuation of flexible ionic polymer composites and the kirigami design principle. Kirigami design is used to convert planar actuators into active 3D structures capable of large out-of-plane displacement and that replicate biological mechanisms. Here we present the burstbot, a fluid control and propulsion mechanism based on the atrioventricular cuspid valve, and the vortibot, a spiral actuator based on Vorticella campanula, a ciliate protozoa. Models derived from biological counterparts are used as a platform for design optimization and actuator performance measurement. The symmetric and asymmetric fluid interactions of the burstbot are investigated and the effectiveness in fluid transport applications is demonstrated. The vortibot actuator is geometrically optimized as a camera positioner capable of 360° scanning. Experimental results for a one-turn spiral actuator show complex actuation derived from a single degree of freedom control signal.

  10. An efficient biologically-inspired photocell enhanced by quantum coherence

    CERN Document Server

    Creatore, C; Emmott, S; Chin, A W


    Artificially reproducing the biological light reactions responsible for the remarkably efficient photon-to-charge conversion in photosynthetic complexes represents a new direction for the future development of photovoltaic devices. Here, we develop such a paradigm and present a model photocell based on the nanoscale architecture of photosynthetic reaction centres that explicitly harnesses the quantum mechanical effects recently discovered in photosynthetic complexes. Quantum interference of photon absorption/emission induced by the dipole-dipole interaction between molecular excited states guarantees an enhanced light-to-current conversion and power generation for a wide range of realistic parameters, opening a promising new route for designing artificial light-harvesting devices inspired by biological photosynthesis and quantum technologies.

  11. Bio-inspired motion estimation – From modelling to evaluation, can biology be a source of inspiration?


    Tlapale, Émilien; Kornprobst, Pierre; Masson, Guillaume; Faugeras, Olivier; Bouecke, Jan,; Neumann, Heiko


    We propose a bio-inspired approach to motion estimation based on recent neuroscience findings concerning the motion pathway. Our goal is to identify the key biological features in order to reach a good compromise between bio-inspiration and computational efficiency. Here we choose the neural field formalism which provides a sound mathematical framework to describe the model at a macroscopic scale. Within this framework we define the cortical activity as coupled integro-differential equations ...

  12. Basic science through engineering? Synthetic modeling and the idea of biology-inspired engineering. (United States)

    Knuuttila, Tarja; Loettgers, Andrea


    Synthetic biology is often understood in terms of the pursuit for well-characterized biological parts to create synthetic wholes. Accordingly, it has typically been conceived of as an engineering dominated and application oriented field. We argue that the relationship of synthetic biology to engineering is far more nuanced than that and involves a sophisticated epistemic dimension, as shown by the recent practice of synthetic modeling. Synthetic models are engineered genetic networks that are implanted in a natural cell environment. Their construction is typically combined with experiments on model organisms as well as mathematical modeling and simulation. What is especially interesting about this combinational modeling practice is that, apart from greater integration between these different epistemic activities, it has also led to the questioning of some central assumptions and notions on which synthetic biology is based. As a result synthetic biology is in the process of becoming more "biology inspired."

  13. Adaptive Fuzzy-Lyapunov Controller Using Biologically Inspired Swarm Intelligence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alejandro Carrasco Elizalde


    Full Text Available The collective behaviour of swarms produces smarter actions than those achieved by a single individual. Colonies of ants, flocks of birds and fish schools are examples of swarms interacting with their environment to achieve a common goal. This cooperative biological intelligence is the inspiration for an adaptive fuzzy controller developed in this paper. Swarm intelligence is used to adjust the parameters of the membership functions used in the adaptive fuzzy controller. The rules of the controller are designed using a computing-with-words approach called Fuzzy-Lyapunov synthesis to improve the stability and robustness of an adaptive fuzzy controller. Computing-with-words provides a powerful tool to manipulate numbers and symbols, like words in a natural language.

  14. Biologically Inspired Self-Stabilizing Control for Bipedal Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Woosung Yang


    Full Text Available Despite recent major advances in computational power and control algorithms, the stable and robust control of a bipedal robot is still a challenging issue due to the complexity and high nonlinearity of robot dynamics. To address the issue an efficient and powerful alternative based on a biologically inspired control framework employing neural oscillators is proposed and tested. In a numerical test the virtual force controller combined with the neural oscillator of a humanoid robot generated rhythmic control signals and stable bipedal locomotion when coupled with proper impedance components. The entrainment nature inherent to neural oscillators also achieved stable and robust walking even in the presence of unexpected disturbances, in that the centre of mass (COM was successfully kept in phase with the zero moment point (ZMP input trajectory. The efficiency of the proposed control scheme is discussed alongside simulation results.

  15. Biologically Inspired Target Recognition in Radar Sensor Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liang Qilian


    Full Text Available One of the great mysteries of the brain is cognitive control. How can the interactions between millions of neurons result in behavior that is coordinated and appears willful and voluntary? There is consensus that it depends on the prefrontal cortex (PFC. Many PFC areas receive converging inputs from at least two sensory modalities. Inspired by human's innate ability to process and integrate information from disparate, network-based sources, we apply human-inspired information integration mechanisms to target detection in cognitive radar sensor network. Humans' information integration mechanisms have been modelled using maximum-likelihood estimation (MLE or soft-max approaches. In this paper, we apply these two algorithms to cognitive radar sensor networks target detection. Discrete-cosine-transform (DCT is used to process the integrated data from MLE or soft-max. We apply fuzzy logic system (FLS to automatic target detection based on the AC power values from DCT. Simulation results show that our MLE-DCT-FLS and soft-max-DCT-FLS approaches perform very well in the radar sensor network target detection, whereas the existing 2D construction algorithm does not work in this study.

  16. Trusted computation through biologically inspired processes (United States)

    Anderson, Gustave W.


    Due to supply chain threats it is no longer a reasonable assumption that traditional protections alone will provide sufficient security for enterprise systems. The proposed cognitive trust model architecture extends the state-of-the-art in enterprise anti-exploitation technologies by providing collective immunity through backup and cross-checking, proactive health monitoring and adaptive/autonomic threat response, and network resource diversity.

  17. Recent Developments in the Application of Biologically Inspired Computation to Chemical Sensing (United States)

    Marco, S.; Gutierrez-Gálvez, A.


    Biological olfaction outperforms chemical instrumentation in specificity, response time, detection limit, coding capacity, time stability, robustness, size, power consumption, and portability. This biological function provides outstanding performance due, to a large extent, to the unique architecture of the olfactory pathway, which combines a high degree of redundancy, an efficient combinatorial coding along with unmatched chemical information processing mechanisms. The last decade has witnessed important advances in the understanding of the computational primitives underlying the functioning of the olfactory system. In this work, the state of the art concerning biologically inspired computation for chemical sensing will be reviewed. Instead of reviewing the whole body of computational neuroscience of olfaction, we restrict this review to the application of models to the processing of real chemical sensor data.

  18. Branching processes in biology

    CERN Document Server

    Kimmel, Marek


    This book provides a theoretical background of branching processes and discusses their biological applications. Branching processes are a well-developed and powerful set of tools in the field of applied probability. The range of applications considered includes molecular biology, cellular biology, human evolution and medicine. The branching processes discussed include Galton-Watson, Markov, Bellman-Harris, Multitype, and General Processes. As an aid to understanding specific examples, two introductory chapters, and two glossaries are included that provide background material in mathematics and in biology. The book will be of interest to scientists who work in quantitative modeling of biological systems, particularly probabilists, mathematical biologists, biostatisticians, cell biologists, molecular biologists, and bioinformaticians. The authors are a mathematician and cell biologist who have collaborated for more than a decade in the field of branching processes in biology for this new edition. This second ex...

  19. Holarchical Systems and Emotional Holons : Biologically-Inspired System Designs for Control of Autonomous Aerial Vehicles (United States)

    Ippolito, Corey; Plice, Laura; Pisanich, Greg


    The BEES (Bio-inspired Engineering for Exploration Systems) for Mars project at NASA Ames Research Center has the goal of developing bio-inspired flight control strategies to enable aerial explorers for Mars scientific investigations. This paper presents a summary of our ongoing research into biologically inspired system designs for control of unmanned autonomous aerial vehicle communities for Mars exploration. First, we present cooperative design considerations for robotic explorers based on the holarchical nature of biological systems and communities. Second, an outline of an architecture for cognitive decision making and control of individual robotic explorers is presented, modeled after the emotional nervous system of cognitive biological systems. Keywords: Holarchy, Biologically Inspired, Emotional UAV Flight Control

  20. Adaptation of sensor morphology: an integrative view of perception from biologically inspired robotics perspective. (United States)

    Iida, Fumiya; Nurzaman, Surya G


    Sensor morphology, the morphology of a sensing mechanism which plays a role of shaping the desired response from physical stimuli from surroundings to generate signals usable as sensory information, is one of the key common aspects of sensing processes. This paper presents a structured review of researches on bioinspired sensor morphology implemented in robotic systems, and discusses the fundamental design principles. Based on literature review, we propose two key arguments: first, owing to its synthetic nature, biologically inspired robotics approach is a unique and powerful methodology to understand the role of sensor morphology and how it can evolve and adapt to its task and environment. Second, a consideration of an integrative view of perception by looking into multidisciplinary and overarching mechanisms of sensor morphology adaptation across biology and engineering enables us to extract relevant design principles that are important to extend our understanding of the unfinished concepts in sensing and perception.

  1. Classification of biological cells using bio-inspired descriptors


    Bel Haj Ali, Wafa; Giampaglia, Dario; Barlaud, Michel; Piro, Paolo; Nock, Richard; Pourcher, Thierry


    International audience; This paper proposes a novel automated approach for the categorization of cells in fluorescence microscopy images. Our supervised classification method aims at recognizing patterns of unlabeled cells based on an annotated dataset. First, the cell images need to be indexed by encoding them in a feature space. For this purpose, we propose tailored bio-inspired features relying on the distribution of contrast information. Then, a supervised learning algorithm is proposed f...

  2. A new landing impact attenuation seat in manned spacecraft biologically-inspired by felids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu Hui


    Full Text Available When manned spacecraft comes back to the earth, it relies on the impact attenuation seat to protect astronauts from injuries during landing phase. Hence, the seat needs to transfer impact load, as small as possible, to the crew. However, there is little room left for traditional seat to improve further. Herein, a new seat system biologically-inspired by felids’ landing is proposed. Firstly, a series of experiments was carried out on cats and tigers, in which they were trained to jump down voluntarily from different heights. Based on the ground reaction forces combined with kinematics, the experiment indicated that felids’ landing after self-initial jump was a multi-step impact attenuation process and the new seat was inspired by this. Then the construction and work process of new seat were redesigned to realize the multi-step impact attenuation. The dynamic response of traditional and new seat is analyzed under the identical conditions and the results show that the new concept seat can significantly weaken the occupant overload in two directions compared with that of traditional seat. As a consequence, the risk of injury evaluated for spinal and head is also lowered, meaning a higher level of protection which is especially beneficial to the debilitated astronaut.

  3. Inspiring Integration in College Students Reading Multiple Biology Texts (United States)

    Firetto, Carla


    Introductory biology courses typically present topics on related biological systems across separate chapters and lectures. A complete foundational understanding requires that students understand how these biological systems are related. Unfortunately, spontaneous generation of these connections is rare for novice learners. These experiments focus…

  4. Thermo-fluidic devices and materials inspired from mass and energy transport phenomena in biological system

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jian XIAO; Jing LIU


    Mass and energy transport consists of one of the most significant physiological processes in nature, which guarantees many amazing biological phenomena and activ-ities. Borrowing such idea, many state-of-the-art thermo-fluidic devices and materials such as artificial kidneys, carrier erythrocyte, blood substitutes and so on have been successfully invented. Besides, new emerging technologies are still being developed. This paper is dedicated to present-ing a relatively complete review of the typical devices and materials in clinical use inspired by biological mass and energy transport mechanisms. Particularly, these artificial thermo-fluidic devices and materials will be categorized into organ transplantation, drug delivery, nutrient transport, micro operation, and power supply. Potential approaches for innovating conventional technologies were discussed, corresponding biological phenomena and physical mechan-isms were interpreted, future promising mass-and-energy-transport-based bionic devices were suggested, and prospects along this direction were pointed out. It is expected that many artificial devices based on biological mass and energy transport principle will appear to better improve vari-ous fields related to human life in the near future.

  5. A Biologically Inspired Cooperative Multi-Robot Control Architecture (United States)

    Howsman, Tom; Craft, Mike; ONeil, Daniel; Howell, Joe T. (Technical Monitor)


    A prototype cooperative multi-robot control architecture suitable for the eventual construction of large space structures has been developed. In nature, there are numerous examples of complex architectures constructed by relatively simple insects, such as termites and wasps, which cooperatively assemble their nests. The prototype control architecture emulates this biological model. Actions of each of the autonomous robotic construction agents are only indirectly coordinated, thus mimicking the distributed construction processes of various social insects. The robotic construction agents perform their primary duties stigmergically i.e., without direct inter-agent communication and without a preprogrammed global blueprint of the final design. Communication and coordination between individual agents occurs indirectly through the sensed modifications that each agent makes to the structure. The global stigmergic building algorithm prototyped during the initial research assumes that the robotic builders only perceive the current state of the structure under construction. Simulation studies have established that an idealized form of the proposed architecture was indeed capable of producing representative large space structures with autonomous robots. This paper will explore the construction simulations in order to illustrate the multi-robot control architecture.

  6. Mechanization and Control Concepts for Biologically Inspired Micro Aerial Vehicles (United States)

    Raney, David L.; Slominski, Eric C.


    It is possible that MAV designs of the future will exploit flapping flight in order to perform missions that require extreme agility, such as rapid flight beneath a forest canopy or within the confines of a building. Many of nature's most agile flyers generate flapping motions through resonant excitation of an aeroelastically tailored structure: muscle tissue is used to excite a vibratory mode of their flexible wing structure that creates propulsion and lift. A number of MAV concepts have been proposed that would operate in a similar fashion. This paper describes an ongoing research activity in which mechanization and control concepts with application to resonant flapping MAVs are being explored. Structural approaches, mechanical design, sensing and wingbeat control concepts inspired by hummingbirds, bats and insects are examined. Experimental results from a testbed capable of generating vibratory wingbeat patterns that approximately match those exhibited by hummingbirds in hover, cruise, and reverse flight are presented.

  7. Biologically-Inspired Adaptive Obstacle Negotiation Behavior of Hexapod Robots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Goldschmidt, Dennis; Wörgötter, Florentin; Manoonpong, Poramate


    Neurobiological studies have shown that insects are able to adapt leg movements and posture for obstacle negotiation in changing environments. Moreover, the distance to an obstacle where an insect begins to climb is found to be a major parameter for successful obstacle negotiation. Inspired...... by these findings, we present an adaptive neural control mechanism for obstacle negotiation behavior in hexapod robots. It combines locomotion control, backbone joint control, local leg reflexes, and neural learning. While the first three components generate locomotion including walking and climbing, the neural...... learning mechanism allows the robot to adapt its behavior for obstacle negotiation with respect to changing conditions, e.g., variable obstacle heights and different walking gaits. By successfully learning the association of an early, predictive signal (conditioned stimulus, CS) and a late, reflex signal...

  8. Biologically inspired force enhancement for maritime propulsion and maneuvering

    CERN Document Server

    Weymouth, G D


    The move to high performance applications greatly increases the demand to produce large instantaneous fluid forces for high-speed maneuvering and improved power efficiency for sustained propulsion. Animals achieve remarkable feats of maneuvering and efficiency by changing their body shape to generate unsteady fluid forces. Inspired by this, we have studied a range of immersed bodies which drastically change their shape to produce fluid forces. These include relatively simple shape- changes, such as quickly changing the angle of attack of a foil to induce emergency stops and the use of tandem flapping foils to generate three times the average propulsive force of a single flapping foil. They also include more unconventional shape-changes such as high-speed retracting foil sections to power roll and dive maneuvers and the use of soft robotics to rapidly shrink the frontal area of an ellipsoid to power 68% efficient fast-start maneuvers or even completely cancel the drag force with 91% quasi-propulsive efficiency...

  9. Biologically-Inspired Adaptive Obstacle Negotiation Behavior of Hexapod Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dennis eGoldschmidt


    Full Text Available Neurobiological studies have shown that insects are able to adapt leg movements and posture for obstacle negotiation in changing environments. Moreover, the distance to an obstacle where an insect begins to climb is found to be a major parameter for successful obstacle negotiation. Inspired by these findings, we present an adaptive neural control mechanism for obstacle negotiation behavior in hexapod robots. It combines locomotion control, backbone joint control, local leg reflexes, and neural learning. While the first three components generate locomotion including walking and climbing, the neural learning mechanism allows the robot to adapt its behavior for obstacle negotiation with respect to changing conditions, e.g., variable obstacle heights and different walking gaits. By successfully learning the association of an early, predictive signal (conditioned stimulus, CS and a late, reflex signal (unconditioned stimulus, UCS, both provided by ultrasonic sensors at the front of the robot, the robot can autonomously find an appropriate distance from an obstacle to initiate climbing. The adaptive neural control was developed and tested first on a physical robot simulation, and was then successfully transferred to a real hexapod robot, called AMOS II. The results show that the robot can efficiently negotiate obstacles with a height up to 85% of the robot's leg length in simulation and 75% in a real environment.

  10. A design methodology for biologically inspired dry fibrillar adhesives (United States)

    Aksak, Burak

    Realization of the unique aspects of gecko adhesion and incorporating these aspects into a comprehensive design methodology is essential to enable fabrication of application oriented gecko-inspired dry fibrillar adhesives. To address the need for such a design methodology, we propose a fibrillar adhesion model that evaluates the effect of fiber dimensions and material on adhesive performance of fiber arrays. A fibrillar adhesion model is developed to predict the adhesive characteristics of an array of fibrillar structures, and quantify the effect of fiber length, radius, spacing, and material. Photolithography techniques were utilized to fabricate elastomer microfiber arrays. Fibers that are fabricated from stiff SU-8 photoresist are used to fabricate a flexible negative mold that facilitates fabrication of fiber arrays from various elastomers with high yield. The tips of the cylindrical fibers are modified to mushroom-like tip shapes. Adhesive strengths in excess of 100 kPa is obtained with mushroom tipped elastomer microfibers. Vertically aligned carbon nanofibers (VACNFs) are utilized as enhanced friction materials by partially embedding inside soft polyurethanes. Friction coefficients up to 1 were repeatedly obtained from the resulting VACNF composite structures. A novel fabrication method is used to attach Poly(n-butyl acrylate) (PBA) molecular brush-like structures on the surface of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS). These brushes are grown on unstructured PDMS and PDMS fibers with mushroom tips. Pull-off force is enhanced by up to 7 times with PBA brush grafted micro-fiber arrays over unstructured PDMS substrate. Adhesion model, initially developed for curved smooth surfaces, is extended to self-affine fractal surfaces to better reflect the adhesion performance of fiber arrays on natural surfaces. Developed adhesion model for fiber arrays is used in an optimization scheme which estimates optimal design parameters to obtain maximum adhesive strength on a given

  11. Dynamical Systems and Control Theory Inspired by Molecular Biology (United States)


    is odd) steady states, there never are more than 2n − 1 steady states, that for parameters near the standard Michaelis - Menten quasi-steady state...conditions, there are at most n + 1 steady states and that for parameters far from the standard Michaelis - Menten quasi-steady state conditions, there is at...moments for certain stochastic kinetics : We have recently started research into stochastic aspects in systems biology. Deterministic mod- els

  12. Biologically Inspired Object Localization for a Modular Mobile Robotic System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zlatogor Minchev


    Full Text Available The paper considers a general model of real biological creatures' antennae, which is practically implemented and tested, over a real element of a mobile modular robotic system - the robot MR1. The last could be utilized in solving of the most classical problem in Robotics - Object Localization. The functionality of the represented sensor system is described in a new and original manner by utilizing the tool of Generalized Nets - a new likelihood for description, modelling and simulation of different objects from the Artificial Intelligence area including Robotics.

  13. Biological inspiration in optics and photonics: harnessing nature's light manipulation strategies for multifunctional optical materials (Conference Presentation) (United States)

    Kolle, Mathias; Sandt, Joseph D.; Nagelberg, Sara N.; Zarzar, Lauren D.; Kreysing, Moritz; Vukusic, Peter


    The precise control of light-matter interactions is crucial for the majority of known biological organisms in their struggle to survive. Many species have evolved unique methods to manipulate light in their environment using a variety of physical effects including pigment-induced, spectrally selective absorption or light interference in photonic structures that consist of micro- and nano-periodic material morphologies. In their optical performance, many of the known biological photonic systems are subject to selection criteria not unlike the requirements faced in the development of novel optical technology. For this reason, biological light manipulation strategies provide inspiration for the creation of tunable, stimuli-responsive, adaptive material platforms that will contribute to the development of multifunctional surfaces and innovative optical technology. Biomimetic and bio-inspired approaches for the manufacture of photonic systems rely on self-assembly and bottom-up growth techniques often combined with conventional top-down manufacturing. In this regard, we can benefit in several ways from highly sophisticated material solutions that have convergently evolved in various organisms. We explore design concepts found in biological photonic architectures, seek to understand the mechanisms underlying morphogenesis of bio-optical systems, aim to devise viable manufacturing strategies that can benefit from insight in biological formation processes and the use of established synthetic routines alike, and ultimately strive to realize new photonic materials with tailor-made optical properties. This talk is focused on the identification of biological role model photonic architectures, a brief discussion of recently developed bio-inspired photonic structures, including mechano-sensitive color-tunable photonic fibers and reconfigurable fluid micro-lenses. Potentially, early-stage results in studying and harnessing the structure-forming capabilities of living cells that

  14. Writing Inspired (United States)

    Tischhauser, Karen


    Students need inspiration to write. Assigning is not teaching. In order to inspire students to write fiction worth reading, teachers must take them through the process of writing. Physical objects inspire good writing with depth. In this article, the reader will be taken through the process of inspiring young writers through the use of boxes.…

  15. Biologically Inspired Model for Visual Cognition Achieving Unsupervised Episodic and Semantic Feature Learning. (United States)

    Qiao, Hong; Li, Yinlin; Li, Fengfu; Xi, Xuanyang; Wu, Wei


    Recently, many biologically inspired visual computational models have been proposed. The design of these models follows the related biological mechanisms and structures, and these models provide new solutions for visual recognition tasks. In this paper, based on the recent biological evidence, we propose a framework to mimic the active and dynamic learning and recognition process of the primate visual cortex. From principle point of view, the main contributions are that the framework can achieve unsupervised learning of episodic features (including key components and their spatial relations) and semantic features (semantic descriptions of the key components), which support higher level cognition of an object. From performance point of view, the advantages of the framework are as follows: 1) learning episodic features without supervision-for a class of objects without a prior knowledge, the key components, their spatial relations and cover regions can be learned automatically through a deep neural network (DNN); 2) learning semantic features based on episodic features-within the cover regions of the key components, the semantic geometrical values of these components can be computed based on contour detection; 3) forming the general knowledge of a class of objects-the general knowledge of a class of objects can be formed, mainly including the key components, their spatial relations and average semantic values, which is a concise description of the class; and 4) achieving higher level cognition and dynamic updating-for a test image, the model can achieve classification and subclass semantic descriptions. And the test samples with high confidence are selected to dynamically update the whole model. Experiments are conducted on face images, and a good performance is achieved in each layer of the DNN and the semantic description learning process. Furthermore, the model can be generalized to recognition tasks of other objects with learning ability.

  16. The berkeley wavelet transform: a biologically inspired orthogonal wavelet transform. (United States)

    Willmore, Ben; Prenger, Ryan J; Wu, Michael C-K; Gallant, Jack L


    We describe the Berkeley wavelet transform (BWT), a two-dimensional triadic wavelet transform. The BWT comprises four pairs of mother wavelets at four orientations. Within each pair, one wavelet has odd symmetry, and the other has even symmetry. By translation and scaling of the whole set (plus a single constant term), the wavelets form a complete, orthonormal basis in two dimensions. The BWT shares many characteristics with the receptive fields of neurons in mammalian primary visual cortex (V1). Like these receptive fields, BWT wavelets are localized in space, tuned in spatial frequency and orientation, and form a set that is approximately scale invariant. The wavelets also have spatial frequency and orientation bandwidths that are comparable with biological values. Although the classical Gabor wavelet model is a more accurate description of the receptive fields of individual V1 neurons, the BWT has some interesting advantages. It is a complete, orthonormal basis and is therefore inexpensive to compute, manipulate, and invert. These properties make the BWT useful in situations where computational power or experimental data are limited, such as estimation of the spatiotemporal receptive fields of neurons.

  17. Chemical biology--identification of small molecule modulators of cellular activity by natural product inspired synthesis. (United States)

    Hübel, Katja; Lessmann, Torben; Waldmann, Herbert


    The aim of this tutorial review is to introduce the reader to the concept, synthesis and application of natural product-inspired compound collections as an important field in chemical biology. This review will discuss how potentially interesting scaffolds can be identified (structural classification of natural products), synthesized in an appropriate manner (including stereoselective transformations for solid phase-bound compounds) and tested in biological assays (cell-based screening as well as biochemical in vitro assays). These approaches will provide the opportunity to identify new and interesting compounds as well as new targets for chemical biology and medicinal chemistry research.

  18. From Here to Autonomicity: Self-Managing Agents and the Biological Metaphors that Inspire Them (United States)

    Sterritt, Roy; Hinchey, Mike


    We seek inspiration for self-managing systems from (obviously, pre-existing) biological mechanisms. Autonomic Computing (AC), a self-managing systems initiative based on the biological metaphor of the autonomic nervous system, is increasingly gaining momentum as the way forward for integrating and designing reliable systems, while agent technologies have been identified as a key enabler for engineering autonomicity in systems. This paper looks at other biological metaphors such as reflex and healing, heart- beat monitors, pulse monitors and apoptosis for assisting in the realization of autonomicity.

  19. Biologically inspired binaural hearing aid algorithms: Design principles and effectiveness (United States)

    Feng, Albert


    Despite rapid advances in the sophistication of hearing aid technology and microelectronics, listening in noise remains problematic for people with hearing impairment. To solve this problem two algorithms were designed for use in binaural hearing aid systems. The signal processing strategies are based on principles in auditory physiology and psychophysics: (a) the location/extraction (L/E) binaural computational scheme determines the directions of source locations and cancels noise by applying a simple subtraction method over every frequency band; and (b) the frequency-domain minimum-variance (FMV) scheme extracts a target sound from a known direction amidst multiple interfering sound sources. Both algorithms were evaluated using standard metrics such as signal-to-noise-ratio gain and articulation index. Results were compared with those from conventional adaptive beam-forming algorithms. In free-field tests with multiple interfering sound sources our algorithms performed better than conventional algorithms. Preliminary intelligibility and speech reception results in multitalker environments showed gains for every listener with normal or impaired hearing when the signals were processed in real time with the FMV binaural hearing aid algorithm. [Work supported by NIH-NIDCD Grant No. R21DC04840 and the Beckman Institute.

  20. Exploring Creativity in the Bio-Inspired Design Process

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Anggakara, K.; Aksdal, T.; Onarheim, Balder


    The growing interest in the of field bio-inspired design has been driven by the acknowledgement that inspiration from nature can serve as a valuable source of innovation. As an emerging approach, there has been a focus on building a principled methodology to address the challenges that arise...

  1. Biologically inspired control of humanoid robot arms robust and adaptive approaches

    CERN Document Server

    Spiers, Adam; Herrmann, Guido


    This book investigates a biologically inspired method of robot arm control, developed with the objective of synthesising human-like motion dynamically, using nonlinear, robust and adaptive control techniques in practical robot systems. The control method caters to a rising interest in humanoid robots and the need for appropriate control schemes to match these systems. Unlike the classic kinematic schemes used in industrial manipulators, the dynamic approaches proposed here promote human-like motion with better exploitation of the robot’s physical structure. This also benefits human-robot interaction. The control schemes proposed in this book are inspired by a wealth of human-motion literature that indicates the drivers of motion to be dynamic, model-based and optimal. Such considerations lend themselves nicely to achievement via nonlinear control techniques without the necessity for extensive and complex biological models. The operational-space method of robot control forms the basis of many of the techniqu...

  2. Biologically Inspired Model for Inference of 3D Shape from Texture. (United States)

    Gomez, Olman; Neumann, Heiko


    A biologically inspired model architecture for inferring 3D shape from texture is proposed. The model is hierarchically organized into modules roughly corresponding to visual cortical areas in the ventral stream. Initial orientation selective filtering decomposes the input into low-level orientation and spatial frequency representations. Grouping of spatially anisotropic orientation responses builds sketch-like representations of surface shape. Gradients in orientation fields and subsequent integration infers local surface geometry and globally consistent 3D depth. From the distributions in orientation responses summed in frequency, an estimate of the tilt and slant of the local surface can be obtained. The model suggests how 3D shape can be inferred from texture patterns and their image appearance in a hierarchically organized processing cascade along the cortical ventral stream. The proposed model integrates oriented texture gradient information that is encoded in distributed maps of orientation-frequency representations. The texture energy gradient information is defined by changes in the grouped summed normalized orientation-frequency response activity extracted from the textured object image. This activity is integrated by directed fields to generate a 3D shape representation of a complex object with depth ordering proportional to the fields output, with higher activity denoting larger distance in relative depth away from the viewer.

  3. Biologically inspired design framework for Robot in Dynamic Environments using Framsticks

    CERN Document Server

    S., Raja Mohamed


    Robot design complexity is increasing day by day especially in automated industries. In this paper we propose biologically inspired design framework for robots in dynamic world on the basis of Co-Evolution, Virtual Ecology, Life time learning which are derived from biological creatures. We have created a virtual khepera robot in Framsticks and tested its operational credibility in terms hardware and software components by applying the above suggested techniques. Monitoring complex and non complex behaviors in different environments and obtaining the parameters that influence software and hardware design of the robot that influence anticipated and unanticipated failures, control programs of robot generation are the major concerns of our techniques.

  4. Thermodynamics of Biological Processes (United States)

    Garcia, Hernan G.; Kondev, Jane; Orme, Nigel; Theriot, Julie A.; Phillips, Rob


    There is a long and rich tradition of using ideas from both equilibrium thermodynamics and its microscopic partner theory of equilibrium statistical mechanics. In this chapter, we provide some background on the origins of the seemingly unreasonable effectiveness of ideas from both thermodynamics and statistical mechanics in biology. After making a description of these foundational issues, we turn to a series of case studies primarily focused on binding that are intended to illustrate the broad biological reach of equilibrium thinking in biology. These case studies include ligand-gated ion channels, thermodynamic models of transcription, and recent applications to the problem of bacterial chemotaxis. As part of the description of these case studies, we explore a number of different uses of the famed Monod–Wyman–Changeux (MWC) model as a generic tool for providing a mathematical characterization of two-state systems. These case studies should provide a template for tailoring equilibrium ideas to other problems of biological interest. PMID:21333788

  5. Signal processing inspired from the olfactory bulb for electronic noses (United States)

    Jing, Ya-Qi; Meng, Qing-Hao; Qi, Pei-Feng; Zeng, Ming; Liu, Ying-Jie


    A bio-inspired signal processing method is proposed for electronic noses (e-noses). The proposed method contains an olfactory bulb model and a feature generation step. The structure of the olfactory bulb model is similar to the anatomical structure of mammals’ olfactory bulb. It consists of olfactory receptor neurons, mitral cells, granule cells, periglomerular cells, and short axon cells. This model uses gas sensors’ original response curves and transforms them to neuron spiking series no matter what kind the response curve is. This largely simplifies the follow-up feature generation step. Recurrence quantification analysis is employed to perform feature generation and the five most important features are selected. Finally, in order to verify the performance of the proposed method, seven kinds of Chinese liquors are tested and three classification methods are used to classify them. The experimental results demonstrate that the proposed method has a higher classification rate (99.05%) and also a steadier performance with the change of sensor number and types than the classic one.

  6. BiLBIQ A Biologically Inspired Robot with Walking and Rolling Locomotion

    CERN Document Server

    King, Ralf Simon


    The book ‘BiLBIQ: A biologically inspired Robot with walking and rolling locomotion’ deals with implementing a locomotion behavior observed in the biological archetype Cebrennus villosus to a robot prototype whose structural design needs to be developed.   The biological sample is investigated as far as possible and compared to other evolutional solutions within the framework of nature’s inventions. Current achievements in robotics are examined and evaluated for their relation and relevance to the robot prototype in question. An overview of what is state of the art in actuation ensures the choice of the hardware available and most suitable for this project. Through a constant consideration of the achievement of two fundamentally different ways of locomotion with one and the same structure, a robot design is developed and constructed taking hardware constraints into account. The development of a special leg structure that needs to resemble and replace body elements of the biological archetype is a speci...

  7. Recovery Management in All Optical Networks Using Biologically-Inspired Complex Adaptive System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Inadyuti Dutt


    Full Text Available All-Optical Networks have the ability to display varied advantages like performance efficiency, throughput etc but their efficiency depends on their survivability as they are attack prone. These attacks can be categorised as active or passive because they try to access information within the network or alter the information in the network. The attack once detected has to be recovered by formulating back-up or alternative paths. The proposed heuristic uses biologically inspired Complex Adaptive System, inspired by Natural Immune System. The study shows that natural immune system exhibit unique behaviour of detecting foreign bodies in our body and removing them on their first occurrences. This phenomenon is being utilised in the proposed heuristic for recovery management in All-optical Network

  8. Mathematical modeling of biological processes

    CERN Document Server

    Friedman, Avner


    This book on mathematical modeling of biological processes includes a wide selection of biological topics that demonstrate the power of mathematics and computational codes in setting up biological processes with a rigorous and predictive framework. Topics include: enzyme dynamics, spread of disease, harvesting bacteria, competition among live species, neuronal oscillations, transport of neurofilaments in axon, cancer and cancer therapy, and granulomas. Complete with a description of the biological background and biological question that requires the use of mathematics, this book is developed for graduate students and advanced undergraduate students with only basic knowledge of ordinary differential equations and partial differential equations; background in biology is not required. Students will gain knowledge on how to program with MATLAB without previous programming experience and how to use codes in order to test biological hypothesis.

  9. Biologically-inspired On-chip Learning in Pulsed Neural Networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lehmann, Torsten; Woodburn, Robin


    Self-learning chips to implement many popular ANN (artificial neural network) algorithms are very difficult to design. We explain why this is so and say what lessons previous work teaches us in the design of self-learning systems. We offer a contribution to the "biologically-inspired" approach......, explaining what we mean by this term and providing an example of a robust, self-learning design that can solve simple classical-conditioning tasks, We give details of the design of individual circuits to perform component functions, which can then be combined into a network to solve the task. We argue...

  10. Real-Time Biologically Inspired Action Recognition from Key Poses Using a Neuromorphic Architecture (United States)

    Layher, Georg; Brosch, Tobias; Neumann, Heiko


    Intelligent agents, such as robots, have to serve a multitude of autonomous functions. Examples are, e.g., collision avoidance, navigation and route planning, active sensing of its environment, or the interaction and non-verbal communication with people in the extended reach space. Here, we focus on the recognition of the action of a human agent based on a biologically inspired visual architecture of analyzing articulated movements. The proposed processing architecture builds upon coarsely segregated streams of sensory processing along different pathways which separately process form and motion information (Layher et al., 2014). Action recognition is performed in an event-based scheme by identifying representations of characteristic pose configurations (key poses) in an image sequence. In line with perceptual studies, key poses are selected unsupervised utilizing a feature-driven criterion which combines extrema in the motion energy with the horizontal and the vertical extendedness of a body shape. Per class representations of key pose frames are learned using a deep convolutional neural network consisting of 15 convolutional layers. The network is trained using the energy-efficient deep neuromorphic networks (Eedn) framework (Esser et al., 2016), which realizes the mapping of the trained synaptic weights onto the IBM Neurosynaptic System platform (Merolla et al., 2014). After the mapping, the trained network achieves real-time capabilities for processing input streams and classify input images at about 1,000 frames per second while the computational stages only consume about 70 mW of energy (without spike transduction). Particularly regarding mobile robotic systems, a low energy profile might be crucial in a variety of application scenarios. Cross-validation results are reported for two different datasets and compared to state-of-the-art action recognition approaches. The results demonstrate, that (I) the presented approach is on par with other key pose based

  11. Soft Robotics: Biological Inspiration, State of the Art, and Future Research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deepak Trivedi


    Full Text Available Traditional robots have rigid underlying structures that limit their ability to interact with their environment. For example, conventional robot manipulators have rigid links and can manipulate objects using only their specialised end effectors. These robots often encounter difficulties operating in unstructured and highly congested environments. A variety of animals and plants exhibit complex movement with soft structures devoid of rigid components. Muscular hydrostats (e.g. octopus arms and elephant trunks are almost entirely composed of muscle and connective tissue and plant cells can change shape when pressurised by osmosis. Researchers have been inspired by biology to design and build soft robots. With a soft structure and redundant degrees of freedom, these robots can be used for delicate tasks in cluttered and/or unstructured environments. This paper discusses the novel capabilities of soft robots, describes examples from nature that provide biological inspiration, surveys the state of the art and outlines existing challenges in soft robot design, modelling, fabrication and control.

  12. [Total synthesis of biologically active alkaloids using bio-inspired indole oxidation]. (United States)

    Ishikawa, Hayato


    Many tryptophan-based dimeric diketopiperazine (DKP) alkaloids including WIN 64821 and ditryptophenaline, which exhibit fascinating biological activities, have been isolated from fungi. These alkaloids possess a unique architecture; therefore several total syntheses of these compounds have been accomplished via bio-inspired reactions. Despite these elegant strategies, we were convinced that a more direct bio-inspired solution for the preparation of tryptophan-based DKP alkaloids was possible because in a true biosynthesis, direct dimerization of tryptophan occurs in aqueous media without incorporation of a protecting group on the substrates. Thus we developed direct bio-inspired dimerization reactions in aqueous, acidic media, along with a novel biomimetic pathway, to provide C2-symmetric and non-symmetric dimeric compounds from commercially available amine-free tryptophan derivatives using Mn(OAc)3, VOF3, and V2O5 as one-electron oxidants. In addition, concise two-pot or three-step syntheses of the naturally occurring dimeric DKP alkaloids (+)-WIN 64821, (-)-ditryptophenaline, and (+)-naseseazine B were accomplished with total yields of 20%, 13%, and 20%, respectively. The present synthesis has several noteworthy features: 1) the tryptophan-based C2-symmetric and non-symmetric dimeric key intermediates can be prepared on a multigram scale in one step; 2) the developed oxidation reaction was carried out in aqueous, acidic solution without deactivation of the metal oxidants; 3) protection of the primary amine can be avoided by salt formation in aqueous acid; 4) for the total two-pot operation, the reaction media are environmentally friendly water and ethanol; 5) satisfactory total yields are obtained compared with previously reported syntheses.

  13. Maneuvering control and configuration adaptation of a biologically inspired morphing aircraft (United States)

    Abdulrahim, Mujahid

    Natural flight as a source of inspiration for aircraft design was prominent with early aircraft but became marginalized as aircraft became larger and faster. With recent interest in small unmanned air vehicles, biological inspiration is a possible technology to enhance mission performance of aircraft that are dimensionally similar to gliding birds. Serial wing joints, loosely modeling the avian skeletal structure, are used in the current study to allow significant reconfiguration of the wing shape. The wings are reconfigured to optimize aerodynamic performance and maneuvering metrics related to specific mission tasks. Wing shapes for each mission are determined and related to the seagulls, falcons, albatrosses, and non-migratory African swallows on which the aircraft are based. Variable wing geometry changes the vehicle dynamics, affording versatility in flight behavior but also requiring appropriate compensation to maintain stability and controllability. Time-varying compensation is in the form of a baseline controller which adapts to both the variable vehicle dynamics and to the changing mission requirements. Wing shape is adapted in flight to minimize a cost function which represents energy, temporal, and spatial efficiency. An optimal control architecture unifies the control and adaptation tasks.

  14. A biologically inspired meta-control navigation system for the Psikharpax rat robot. (United States)

    Caluwaerts, K; Staffa, M; N'Guyen, S; Grand, C; Dollé, L; Favre-Félix, A; Girard, B; Khamassi, M


    A biologically inspired navigation system for the mobile rat-like robot named Psikharpax is presented, allowing for self-localization and autonomous navigation in an initially unknown environment. The ability of parts of the model (e.g. the strategy selection mechanism) to reproduce rat behavioral data in various maze tasks has been validated before in simulations. But the capacity of the model to work on a real robot platform had not been tested. This paper presents our work on the implementation on the Psikharpax robot of two independent navigation strategies (a place-based planning strategy and a cue-guided taxon strategy) and a strategy selection meta-controller. We show how our robot can memorize which was the optimal strategy in each situation, by means of a reinforcement learning algorithm. Moreover, a context detector enables the controller to quickly adapt to changes in the environment-recognized as new contexts-and to restore previously acquired strategy preferences when a previously experienced context is recognized. This produces adaptivity closer to rat behavioral performance and constitutes a computational proposition of the role of the rat prefrontal cortex in strategy shifting. Moreover, such a brain-inspired meta-controller may provide an advancement for learning architectures in robotics.

  15. Actions, Observations, and Decision-Making: Biologically Inspired Strategies for Autonomous Aerial Vehicles (United States)

    Pisanich, Greg; Ippolito, Corey; Plice, Laura; Young, Larry A.; Lau, Benton


    This paper details the development and demonstration of an autonomous aerial vehicle embodying search and find mission planning and execution srrategies inspired by foraging behaviors found in biology. It begins by describing key characteristics required by an aeria! explorer to support science and planetary exploration goals, and illustrates these through a hypothetical mission profile. It next outlines a conceptual bio- inspired search and find autonomy architecture that implements observations, decisions, and actions through an "ecology" of producer, consumer, and decomposer agents. Moving from concepts to development activities, it then presents the results of mission representative UAV aerial surveys at a Mars analog site. It next describes hardware and software enhancements made to a commercial small fixed-wing UAV system, which inc!nde a ncw dpvelopnent architecture that also provides hardware in the loop simulation capability. After presenting the results of simulated and actual flights of bioinspired flight algorithms, it concludes with a discussion of future development to include an expansion of system capabilities and field science support.

  16. Survey of locomotion control of legged robots inspired by biological concept

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WU QiDi; LIU ChengJu; ZHANG JiaQi; CHEN QiJun


    Compared with wheeled mobile robots, legged robots can easily step over obstacles and walk through rugged ground. They have more flexible bodies and therefore, can deal with complex environment. Nev-ertheless, some other issues make the locomotion control of legged robots a much complicated task, such as the redundant degree of freedoms and balance keeping. From literatures, locomotion control has been solved mainly based on programming mechanism. To use this method, walking trajectories for each leg and the gaits have to be designed, and the adaptability to an unknown environment cannot be guaranteed. From another aspect, studying and simulating animals' walking mechanism for engi-neering application is an efficient way to break the bottleneck of locomotion control for legged robots. This has attracted more and more attentions. Inspired by central pattern generator (CPG), a control method has been proved to be a successful attempt within this scope. In this paper, we will review the biological mechanism, the existence evidences, and the network properties of CPG. From the en-gineering perspective, we will introduce the engineering simulation of CPG, the property analysis, and the research progress of CPG inspired control method in locomotion control of legged robots. Then, in our research, we will further discuss on existing problems, hot issues, and future research directions in this field.

  17. Soft robotic arm inspired by the octopus: I. From biological functions to artificial requirements. (United States)

    Margheri, L; Laschi, C; Mazzolai, B


    Octopuses are molluscs that belong to the group Cephalopoda. They lack joints and rigid links, and as a result, their arms possess virtually limitless freedom of movement. These flexible appendages exhibit peculiar biomechanical features such as stiffness control, compliance, and high flexibility and dexterity. Studying the capabilities of the octopus arm is a complex task that presents a challenge for both biologists and roboticists, the latter of whom draw inspiration from the octopus in designing novel technologies within soft robotics. With this idea in mind, in this study, we used new, purposively developed methods of analysing the octopus arm in vivo to create new biologically inspired design concepts. Our measurements showed that the octopus arm can elongate by 70% in tandem with a 23% diameter reduction and exhibits an average pulling force of 40 N. The arm also exhibited a 20% mean shortening at a rate of 17.1 mm s(-1) and a longitudinal stiffening rate as high as 2 N (mm s)(-1). Using histology and ultrasounds, we investigated the functional morphology of the internal tissues, including the sinusoidal arrangement of the nerve cord and the local insertion points of the longitudinal and transverse muscle fibres. The resulting information was used to create novel design principles and specifications that can in turn be used in developing a new soft robotic arm.

  18. Stochastic processes in cell biology

    CERN Document Server

    Bressloff, Paul C


    This book develops the theory of continuous and discrete stochastic processes within the context of cell biology.  A wide range of biological topics are covered including normal and anomalous diffusion in complex cellular environments, stochastic ion channels and excitable systems, stochastic calcium signaling, molecular motors, intracellular transport, signal transduction, bacterial chemotaxis, robustness in gene networks, genetic switches and oscillators, cell polarization, polymerization, cellular length control, and branching processes. The book also provides a pedagogical introduction to the theory of stochastic process – Fokker Planck equations, stochastic differential equations, master equations and jump Markov processes, diffusion approximations and the system size expansion, first passage time problems, stochastic hybrid systems, reaction-diffusion equations, exclusion processes, WKB methods, martingales and branching processes, stochastic calculus, and numerical methods.   This text is primarily...

  19. Mechanism Interpretation of the Biological Brain Cooling and Its Inspiration on Bionic Engineering

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xu Xue; Jing Liu


    The brain is one of the most important organs in a biological body which can only work in a relatively stable temperature range. However, many environmental factors in biosphere would cause cerebral temperature fluctuations. To sustain and regulate the brain temperature, many mechanisms of biological brain cooling have been evolved, including Selective Brain Cooling (SBC), cooling through surface water evaporation, respiration, behavior response and using special anatomical appendages. This article is dedicated to present a summarization and systematic interpretation on brain cooling strategies developed in animals by classifying and comparatively analyzing each typical biological brain cooling mechanism from the perspective of bio-heat transfer. Meanwhile, inspirations from such cooling in nature were proposed for developing advanced bionic engineering technologies especially with two focuses on therapeutic hypothermia and computer chip cooling areas. It is expected that many innovations can be achieved along this way to find out new cooling methodologies for a wide variety of industrial applications which will be highly efficient, energy saving, flexible or even intelligent.

  20. Biologically Inspired Electronic, Photovoltaic and Microfluidic Devices Based on Aqueous Soft Matter (United States)

    Koo, Hyung Jun

    Hydrogels are a water-based soft material where three dimensional networks of hydrophilic polymer retain large amounts of water. We developed hydrogel based devices with new functionalities inspired by materials, structures and processes in nature. The advantages, such as softness, biocompatibility and high ionic conductivity, could enable hydrogels to be novel materials for biomimetic devices operated by ionic current. Moreover, microfluidic patterns are easily embedded in moldable hydrogels and allow for unique convective/diffusive transport mechanism in porous gel to be used for uniform delivery of reagent solution. We first developed and characterized a device with unidirectional ionic current flow across a SiO2/Gel junction, which showed highly efficient rectification of the ionic current by non-linear conductivity of SiO2 films. Addition of polyelectrolytes and salt to the gel layer significantly improved the performance of the new diode device because of the enhanced gel conductance. A soft matter based diode composed of hydrogel and liquid metal (eutectic gallium indium, EGaIn) was also presented. The ability to control the thickness, and thus resistivity, of an insulating oxide skin on the metal enables the current rectification. The effect of ionic conductivity and pH on the formation of the insulating oxide was investigated in a simple model system with liquid metal/electrolyte solution or hydrogel/Pt interfaces. Finally, we present a diode composed entirely of soft materials by replacing the platinum electrode with a second liquid metal electrode. A new type of hydrogel-based photovoltaic systems (HGPVs) was constructed. Two photosensitive ionized molecules embedded in aqueous gel served as photoactive species. The HGPVs showed performance comparable with or higher than those of some other biomimetic or ionic photovoltaic systems reported recently. We suggest a provisional mechanism of the device operation, based on a synergetic effect of the two dye

  1. Molecular Processes in Biological Thermosensation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. Digel


    Full Text Available Since thermal gradients are almost everywhere, thermosensation could represent one of the oldest sensory transduction processes that evolved in organisms. There are many examples of temperature changes affecting the physiology of living cells. Almost all classes of biological macromolecules in a cell (nucleic acids, lipids, proteins can present a target of the temperature-related stimuli. This review discusses some features of different classes of temperature-sensing molecules as well as molecular and biological processes that involve thermosensation. Biochemical, structural, and thermodynamic approaches are applied in the paper to organize the existing knowledge on molecular mechanisms of thermosensation. Special attention is paid to the fact that thermosensitive function cannot be assigned to any particular functional group or spatial structure but is rather of universal nature. For instance, the complex of thermodynamic, structural, and functional features of hemoglobin family proteins suggests their possible accessory role as “molecular thermometers”.

  2. A biologically inspired neural network model to transformation invariant object recognition (United States)

    Iftekharuddin, Khan M.; Li, Yaqin; Siddiqui, Faraz


    Transformation invariant image recognition has been an active research area due to its widespread applications in a variety of fields such as military operations, robotics, medical practices, geographic scene analysis, and many others. The primary goal for this research is detection of objects in the presence of image transformations such as changes in resolution, rotation, translation, scale and occlusion. We investigate a biologically-inspired neural network (NN) model for such transformation-invariant object recognition. In a classical training-testing setup for NN, the performance is largely dependent on the range of transformation or orientation involved in training. However, an even more serious dilemma is that there may not be enough training data available for successful learning or even no training data at all. To alleviate this problem, a biologically inspired reinforcement learning (RL) approach is proposed. In this paper, the RL approach is explored for object recognition with different types of transformations such as changes in scale, size, resolution and rotation. The RL is implemented in an adaptive critic design (ACD) framework, which approximates the neuro-dynamic programming of an action network and a critic network, respectively. Two ACD algorithms such as Heuristic Dynamic Programming (HDP) and Dual Heuristic dynamic Programming (DHP) are investigated to obtain transformation invariant object recognition. The two learning algorithms are evaluated statistically using simulated transformations in images as well as with a large-scale UMIST face database with pose variations. In the face database authentication case, the 90° out-of-plane rotation of faces from 20 different subjects in the UMIST database is used. Our simulations show promising results for both designs for transformation-invariant object recognition and authentication of faces. Comparing the two algorithms, DHP outperforms HDP in learning capability, as DHP takes fewer steps to

  3. The DCA:SOMe Comparison A comparative study between two biologically-inspired algorithms

    CERN Document Server

    Greensmith, Julie; Aickelin, Uwe


    The Dendritic Cell Algorithm (DCA) is an immune-inspired algorithm, developed for the purpose of anomaly detection. The algorithm performs multi-sensor data fusion and correlation which results in a 'context aware' detection system. Previous applications of the DCA have included the detection of potentially malicious port scanning activity, where it has produced high rates of true positives and low rates of false positives. In this work we aim to compare the performance of the DCA and of a Self-Organizing Map (SOM) when applied to the detection of SYN port scans, through experimental analysis. A SOM is an ideal candidate for comparison as it shares similarities with the DCA in terms of the data fusion method employed. It is shown that the results of the two systems are comparable, and both produce false positives for the same processes. This shows that the DCA can produce anomaly detection results to the same standard as an established technique.

  4. 16th International Conference on Hybrid Intelligent Systems and the 8th World Congress on Nature and Biologically Inspired Computing

    CERN Document Server

    Haqiq, Abdelkrim; Alimi, Adel; Mezzour, Ghita; Rokbani, Nizar; Muda, Azah


    This book presents the latest research in hybrid intelligent systems. It includes 57 carefully selected papers from the 16th International Conference on Hybrid Intelligent Systems (HIS 2016) and the 8th World Congress on Nature and Biologically Inspired Computing (NaBIC 2016), held on November 21–23, 2016 in Marrakech, Morocco. HIS - NaBIC 2016 was jointly organized by the Machine Intelligence Research Labs (MIR Labs), USA; Hassan 1st University, Settat, Morocco and University of Sfax, Tunisia. Hybridization of intelligent systems is a promising research field in modern artificial/computational intelligence and is concerned with the development of the next generation of intelligent systems. The conference’s main aim is to inspire further exploration of the intriguing potential of hybrid intelligent systems and bio-inspired computing. As such, the book is a valuable resource for practicing engineers /scientists and researchers working in the field of computational intelligence and artificial intelligence.

  5. Honeybees as a model for the study of visually guided flight, navigation, and biologically inspired robotics. (United States)

    Srinivasan, Mandyam V


    Research over the past century has revealed the impressive capacities of the honeybee, Apis mellifera, in relation to visual perception, flight guidance, navigation, and learning and memory. These observations, coupled with the relative ease with which these creatures can be trained, and the relative simplicity of their nervous systems, have made honeybees an attractive model in which to pursue general principles of sensorimotor function in a variety of contexts, many of which pertain not just to honeybees, but several other animal species, including humans. This review begins by describing the principles of visual guidance that underlie perception of the world in three dimensions, obstacle avoidance, control of flight speed, and orchestrating smooth landings. We then consider how navigation over long distances is accomplished, with particular reference to how bees use information from the celestial compass to determine their flight bearing, and information from the movement of the environment in their eyes to gauge how far they have flown. Finally, we illustrate how some of the principles gleaned from these studies are now being used to design novel, biologically inspired algorithms for the guidance of unmanned aerial vehicles.

  6. Task-Oriented Parameter Tuning Based on Priority Condition for Biologically Inspired Robot Application

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaesung Kwon


    Full Text Available This work gives a biologically inspired control scheme for controlling a robotic system. Novel adaptive behaviors are observed from humans or animals even in unexpected disturbances or environment changes. This is why they have neural oscillator networks in the spinal cord to yield rhythmic-motor primitives robustly under a changing task. Hence, this work focuses on rhythmic arm movements that can be accomplished in terms of employing a control approach based on an artificial neural oscillator model. The main challenge is to determine various parameters for applying a neural feedback to robotic systems with performing a desired behavior and self-maintaining the entrainment effect. Hence, this work proposes a task-oriented parameter tuning algorithm based on the simulated annealing (SA. This work also illustrates how to technically implement the proposed control scheme exploiting a virtual force and neural feedback. With parameters tuned, it is verified in simulations that a 3-DOF planar robotic arm traces a given trajectory precisely, adapting to uneven external disturbances.

  7. Biologically inspired robotic inspectors: the engineering reality and future outlook (Keynote address) (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph


    Human errors have long been recognized as a major factor in the reliability of nondestructive evaluation results. To minimize such errors, there is an increasing reliance on automatic inspection tools that allow faster and consistent tests. Crawlers and various manipulation devices are commonly used to perform variety of inspection procedures that include C-scan with contour following capability to rapidly inspect complex structures. The emergence of robots has been the result of the need to deal with parts that are too complex to handle by a simple automatic system. Economical factors are continuing to hamper the wide use of robotics for inspection applications however technology advances are increasingly changing this paradigm. Autonomous robots, which may look like human, can potentially address the need to inspect structures with configuration that are not predetermined. The operation of such robots that mimic biology may take place at harsh or hazardous environments that are too dangerous for human presence. Biomimetic technologies such as artificial intelligence, artificial muscles, artificial vision and numerous others are increasingly becoming common engineering tools. Inspired by science fiction, making biomimetic robots is increasingly becoming an engineering reality and in this paper the state-of-the-art will be reviewed and the outlook for the future will be discussed.

  8. Design of a biologically inspired lower limb exoskeleton for human gait rehabilitation (United States)

    Lyu, Mingxing; Chen, Weihai; Ding, Xilun; Wang, Jianhua; Bai, Shaoping; Ren, Huichao


    This paper proposes a novel bionic model of the human leg according to the theory of physiology. Based on this model, we present a biologically inspired 3-degree of freedom (DOF) lower limb exoskeleton for human gait rehabilitation, showing that the lower limb exoskeleton is fully compatible with the human knee joint. The exoskeleton has a hybrid serial-parallel kinematic structure consisting of a 1-DOF hip joint module and a 2-DOF knee joint module in the sagittal plane. A planar 2-DOF parallel mechanism is introduced in the design to fully accommodate the motion of the human knee joint, which features not only rotation but also relative sliding. Therefore, the design is consistent with the requirements of bionics. The forward and inverse kinematic analysis is studied and the workspace of the exoskeleton is analyzed. The structural parameters are optimized to obtain a larger workspace. The results using MATLAB-ADAMS co-simulation are shown in this paper to demonstrate the feasibility of our design. A prototype of the exoskeleton is also developed and an experiment performed to verify the kinematic analysis. Compared with existing lower limb exoskeletons, the designed mechanism has a large workspace, while allowing knee joint rotation and small amount of sliding.

  9. Game Inspired Tool Support for e-Learning Processes (United States)

    Charles, Marie-Therese; Bustard, David; Black, Michaela


    Student engagement is crucial to the success of e-learning but is often difficult to achieve in practice. One significant factor is the quality of the learning content; also important, however, is the suitability of the process through which that material is studied. In recent years much research has been devoted to improving e-learning content…

  10. Myoelectric control of artificial limb inspired by quantum information processing (United States)

    Siomau, Michael; Jiang, Ning


    Precise and elegant coordination of a prosthesis across many degrees of freedom represents a significant challenge to efficient rehabilitation of people with limb deficiency. Processing the electrical neural signals collected from the surface of the remnant muscles of the stump is a common way to initiate and control the different movements available to the artificial limb. Based on the assumption that there are distinguishable and repeatable signal patterns among different types of muscular activation, the problem of prosthesis control reduces to one of pattern recognition. Widely accepted classical methods for pattern recognition, however, cannot provide simultaneous and proportional control of the artificial limb. Here we show that, in principle, quantum information processing of the neural signals allows us to overcome the above-mentioned difficulties, suggesting a very simple scheme for myoelectric control of artificial limb with advanced functionalities.

  11. a Markov-Process Inspired CA Model of Highway Traffic (United States)

    Wang, Fa; Li, Li; Hu, Jian-Ming; Ji, Yan; Ma, Rui; Jiang, Rui

    To provide a more accurate description of the driving behaviors especially in car-following, namely a Markov-Gap cellular automata model is proposed in this paper. It views the variation of the gap between two consequent vehicles as a Markov process whose stationary distribution corresponds to the observed gap distribution. This new model provides a microscopic simulation explanation for the governing interaction forces (potentials) between the queuing vehicles, which cannot be directly measurable for traffic flow applications. The agreement between empirical observations and simulation results suggests the soundness of this new approach.

  12. Training mechanical engineering students to utilize biological inspiration during product development. (United States)

    Bruck, Hugh A; Gershon, Alan L; Golden, Ira; Gupta, Satyandra K; Gyger, Lawrence S; Magrab, Edward B; Spranklin, Brent W


    The use of bio-inspiration for the development of new products and devices requires new educational tools for students consisting of appropriate design and manufacturing technologies, as well as curriculum. At the University of Maryland, new educational tools have been developed that introduce bio-inspired product realization to undergraduate mechanical engineering students. These tools include the development of a bio-inspired design repository, a concurrent fabrication and assembly manufacturing technology, a series of undergraduate curriculum modules and a new senior elective in the bio-inspired robotics area. This paper first presents an overview of the two new design and manufacturing technologies that enable students to realize bio-inspired products, and describes how these technologies are integrated into the undergraduate educational experience. Then, the undergraduate curriculum modules are presented, which provide students with the fundamental design and manufacturing principles needed to support bio-inspired product and device development. Finally, an elective bio-inspired robotics project course is present, which provides undergraduates with the opportunity to demonstrate the application of the knowledge acquired through the curriculum modules in their senior year using the new design and manufacturing technologies.

  13. Bio-inspired Artificial Intelligence: А Generalized Net Model of the Regularization Process in MLP

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stanimir Surchev


    Full Text Available Many objects and processes inspired by the nature have been recreated by the scientists. The inspiration to create a Multilayer Neural Network came from human brain as member of the group. It possesses complicated structure and it is difficult to recreate, because of the existence of too many processes that require different solving methods. The aim of the following paper is to describe one of the methods that improve learning process of Artificial Neural Network. The proposed generalized net method presents Regularization process in Multilayer Neural Network. The purpose of verification is to protect the neural network from overfitting. The regularization is commonly used in neural network training process. Many methods of verification are present, the subject of interest is the one known as Regularization. It contains function in order to set weights and biases with smaller values to protect from overfitting.

  14. Using parallel evolutionary development for a biologically-inspired computer vision system for mobile robots. (United States)

    Wright, Cameron H G; Barrett, Steven F; Pack, Daniel J


    We describe a new approach to attacking the problem of robust computer vision for mobile robots. The overall strategy is to mimic the biological evolution of animal vision systems. Our basic imaging sensor is based upon the eye of the common house fly, Musca domestica. The computational algorithms are a mix of traditional image processing, subspace techniques, and multilayer neural networks.

  15. Fixed-wing MAV attitude stability in atmospheric turbulence-Part 2: Investigating biologically-inspired sensors (United States)

    Mohamed, A.; Watkins, S.; Clothier, R.; Abdulrahim, M.; Massey, K.; Sabatini, R.


    Challenges associated with flight control of agile fixed-wing Micro Air Vehicles (MAVs) operating in complex environments is significantly different to any larger scale vehicle. The micro-scale of MAVs can make them particularly sensitive to atmospheric disturbances thus limiting their operation. As described in Part 1, current conventional reactive attitude sensing systems lack the necessary response times for attitude control in high turbulence environments. This paper reviews in greater detail novel and emerging biologically inspired sensors, which can sense the disturbances before a perturbation is induced. A number of biological mechanoreceptors used by flying animals are explored for their utility in MAVs. Man-made attempts of replicating mechanoreceptors have thus been reviewed. Bio-inspired flow and pressure-based sensors were found to be the most promising for complementing or replacing current inertial-based reactive attitude sensors. Achieving practical implementations that meet the size, weight and power constraints of MAVs remains a significant challenge. Biological systems were found to rely on multiple sensors, potentially implying a number of research opportunities in the exploration of heterogeneous bio-inspired sensing solutions.

  16. Integrating biologically inspired nanomaterials and table-top stereolithography for 3D printed biomimetic osteochondral scaffolds. (United States)

    Castro, Nathan J; O'Brien, Joseph; Zhang, Lijie Grace


    The osteochondral interface of an arthritic joint is notoriously difficult to regenerate due to its extremely poor regenerative capacity and complex stratified architecture. Native osteochondral tissue extracellular matrix is composed of numerous nanoscale organic and inorganic constituents. Although various tissue engineering strategies exist in addressing osteochondral defects, limitations persist with regards to tissue scaffolding which exhibit biomimetic cues at the nano to micro scale. In an effort to address this, the current work focused on 3D printing biomimetic nanocomposite scaffolds for improved osteochondral tissue regeneration. For this purpose, two biologically-inspired nanomaterials have been synthesized consisting of (1) osteoconductive nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite (nHA) (primary inorganic component of bone) and (2) core-shell poly(lactic-co-glycolic) acid (PLGA) nanospheres encapsulated with chondrogenic transforming growth-factor β1 (TGF-β1) for sustained delivery. Then, a novel table-top stereolithography 3D printer and the nano-ink (i.e., nHA + nanosphere + hydrogel) were employed to fabricate a porous and highly interconnected osteochondral scaffold with hierarchical nano-to-micro structure and spatiotemporal bioactive factor gradients. Our results showed that human bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cell adhesion, proliferation, and osteochondral differentiation were greatly improved in the biomimetic graded 3D printed osteochondral construct in vitro. The current work served to illustrate the efficacy of the nano-ink and current 3D printing technology for efficient fabrication of a novel nanocomposite hydrogel scaffold. In addition, tissue-specific growth factors illustrated a synergistic effect leading to increased cell adhesion and directed stem cell differentiation.

  17. Integrating biologically inspired nanomaterials and table-top stereolithography for 3D printed biomimetic osteochondral scaffolds (United States)

    Castro, Nathan J.; O'Brien, Joseph; Zhang, Lijie Grace


    The osteochondral interface of an arthritic joint is notoriously difficult to regenerate due to its extremely poor regenerative capacity and complex stratified architecture. Native osteochondral tissue extracellular matrix is composed of numerous nanoscale organic and inorganic constituents. Although various tissue engineering strategies exist in addressing osteochondral defects, limitations persist with regards to tissue scaffolding which exhibit biomimetic cues at the nano to micro scale. In an effort to address this, the current work focused on 3D printing biomimetic nanocomposite scaffolds for improved osteochondral tissue regeneration. For this purpose, two biologically-inspired nanomaterials have been synthesized consisting of (1) osteoconductive nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite (nHA) (primary inorganic component of bone) and (2) core-shell poly(lactic-co-glycolic) acid (PLGA) nanospheres encapsulated with chondrogenic transforming growth-factor β1 (TGF-β1) for sustained delivery. Then, a novel table-top stereolithography 3D printer and the nano-ink (i.e., nHA + nanosphere + hydrogel) were employed to fabricate a porous and highly interconnected osteochondral scaffold with hierarchical nano-to-micro structure and spatiotemporal bioactive factor gradients. Our results showed that human bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cell adhesion, proliferation, and osteochondral differentiation were greatly improved in the biomimetic graded 3D printed osteochondral construct in vitro. The current work served to illustrate the efficacy of the nano-ink and current 3D printing technology for efficient fabrication of a novel nanocomposite hydrogel scaffold. In addition, tissue-specific growth factors illustrated a synergistic effect leading to increased cell adhesion and directed stem cell differentiation.

  18. Introductory Biology Textbooks Under-Represent Scientific Process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dara B. Duncan


    Full Text Available Attrition of undergraduates from Biology majors is a long-standing problem. Introductory courses that fail to engage students or spark their curiosity by emphasizing the open-ended and creative nature of biological investigation and discovery could contribute to student detachment from the field. Our hypothesis was that introductory biology books devote relatively few figures to illustration of the design and interpretation of experiments or field studies, thereby de-emphasizing the scientific process.To investigate this possibility, we examined figures in six Introductory Biology textbooks published in 2008. On average, multistep scientific investigations were presented in fewer than 5% of the hundreds of figures in each book. Devoting such a small percentage of figures to the processes by which discoveries are made discourages an emphasis on scientific thinking. We suggest that by increasing significantly the illustration of scientific investigations, textbooks could support undergraduates’ early interest in biology, stimulate the development of design and analytical skills, and inspire some students to participate in investigations of their own.

  19. A biologically inspired attachable, self-standing nanofibrous membrane for versatile use in oil-water separation (United States)

    Tenjimbayashi, Mizuki; Sasaki, Kaichi; Matsubayashi, Takeshi; Abe, Jyunichiro; Manabe, Kengo; Nishioka, Sachiko; Shiratori, Seimei


    Uloborus walckenaerius spider webs provided the inspiration for attachable, self-standing nanofibre sheets. The developed product adds selective wettability against oil-water mixtures to both 2D and 3D materials by attaching or covering them, leading to successful separation through a facile, scalable and low-cost process.Uloborus walckenaerius spider webs provided the inspiration for attachable, self-standing nanofibre sheets. The developed product adds selective wettability against oil-water mixtures to both 2D and 3D materials by attaching or covering them, leading to successful separation through a facile, scalable and low-cost process. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: Experimental section, designing procedure, cost, cross sectional SEM, influence of NFs-S components to wettability, thickness, fibre diameter and flexibility, surface tension vs. contact angle, SEM images after extraction of oil, characteristics of testing oil, large scale-fabrication of NFs-S. See DOI: 10.1039/c6nr03349k

  20. Biologically inspired information theory: Adaptation through construction of external reality models by living systems. (United States)

    Nakajima, Toshiyuki


    Higher animals act in the world using their external reality models to cope with the uncertain environment. Organisms that have not developed such information-processing organs may also have external reality models built in the form of their biochemical, physiological, and behavioral structures, acquired by natural selection through successful models constructed internally. Organisms subject to illusions would fail to survive in the material universe. How can organisms, or living systems in general, determine the external reality from within? This paper starts with a phenomenological model, in which the self constitutes a reality model developed through the mental processing of phenomena. Then, the it-from-bit concept is formalized using a simple mathematical model. For this formalization, my previous work on an algorithmic process is employed to constitute symbols referring to the external reality, called the inverse causality, with additional improvements to the previous work. Finally, as an extension of this model, the cognizers system model is employed to describe the self as one of many material entities in a world, each of which acts as a subject by responding to the surrounding entities. This model is used to propose a conceptual framework of information theory that can deal with both the qualitative (semantic) and quantitative aspects of the information involved in biological processes.

  1. How can selection of biologically inspired features improve the performance of a robust object recognition model?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masoud Ghodrati

    Full Text Available Humans can effectively and swiftly recognize objects in complex natural scenes. This outstanding ability has motivated many computational object recognition models. Most of these models try to emulate the behavior of this remarkable system. The human visual system hierarchically recognizes objects in several processing stages. Along these stages a set of features with increasing complexity is extracted by different parts of visual system. Elementary features like bars and edges are processed in earlier levels of visual pathway and as far as one goes upper in this pathway more complex features will be spotted. It is an important interrogation in the field of visual processing to see which features of an object are selected and represented by the visual cortex. To address this issue, we extended a hierarchical model, which is motivated by biology, for different object recognition tasks. In this model, a set of object parts, named patches, extracted in the intermediate stages. These object parts are used for training procedure in the model and have an important role in object recognition. These patches are selected indiscriminately from different positions of an image and this can lead to the extraction of non-discriminating patches which eventually may reduce the performance. In the proposed model we used an evolutionary algorithm approach to select a set of informative patches. Our reported results indicate that these patches are more informative than usual random patches. We demonstrate the strength of the proposed model on a range of object recognition tasks. The proposed model outperforms the original model in diverse object recognition tasks. It can be seen from the experiments that selected features are generally particular parts of target images. Our results suggest that selected features which are parts of target objects provide an efficient set for robust object recognition.

  2. How can selection of biologically inspired features improve the performance of a robust object recognition model? (United States)

    Ghodrati, Masoud; Khaligh-Razavi, Seyed-Mahdi; Ebrahimpour, Reza; Rajaei, Karim; Pooyan, Mohammad


    Humans can effectively and swiftly recognize objects in complex natural scenes. This outstanding ability has motivated many computational object recognition models. Most of these models try to emulate the behavior of this remarkable system. The human visual system hierarchically recognizes objects in several processing stages. Along these stages a set of features with increasing complexity is extracted by different parts of visual system. Elementary features like bars and edges are processed in earlier levels of visual pathway and as far as one goes upper in this pathway more complex features will be spotted. It is an important interrogation in the field of visual processing to see which features of an object are selected and represented by the visual cortex. To address this issue, we extended a hierarchical model, which is motivated by biology, for different object recognition tasks. In this model, a set of object parts, named patches, extracted in the intermediate stages. These object parts are used for training procedure in the model and have an important role in object recognition. These patches are selected indiscriminately from different positions of an image and this can lead to the extraction of non-discriminating patches which eventually may reduce the performance. In the proposed model we used an evolutionary algorithm approach to select a set of informative patches. Our reported results indicate that these patches are more informative than usual random patches. We demonstrate the strength of the proposed model on a range of object recognition tasks. The proposed model outperforms the original model in diverse object recognition tasks. It can be seen from the experiments that selected features are generally particular parts of target images. Our results suggest that selected features which are parts of target objects provide an efficient set for robust object recognition.

  3. Performance improvement of IPMC flow sensors with a biologically-inspired cupula structure (United States)

    Lei, Hong; Sharif, Montassar Aidi; Paley, Derek A.; McHenry, Matthew J.; Tan, Xiaobo


    Ionic polymer-metal composites (IPMCs) have inherent underwater sensing and actuation properties. They can be used as sensors to collect flow information. Inspired by the hair-cell mediated receptor in the lateral line system of fish, the impact of a flexible, cupula-like structure on the performance of IPMC flow sensors is experimentally explored. The fabrication method to create a silicone-capped IPMC sensor is reported. Experiments are conducted to compare the sensing performance of the IPMC flow sensor before and after the PDMS coating under the periodic flow stimulus generated by a dipole source in still water and the laminar flow stimulus generated in a flow tank. Experimental results show that the performance of IPMC flow sensors is significantly improved under the stimulus of both periodic flow and laminar flow by the proposed silicone-capping.

  4. The role of mechanics in biological and bio-inspired systems. (United States)

    Egan, Paul; Sinko, Robert; LeDuc, Philip R; Keten, Sinan


    Natural systems frequently exploit intricate multiscale and multiphasic structures to achieve functionalities beyond those of man-made systems. Although understanding the chemical make-up of these systems is essential, the passive and active mechanics within biological systems are crucial when considering the many natural systems that achieve advanced properties, such as high strength-to-weight ratios and stimuli-responsive adaptability. Discovering how and why biological systems attain these desirable mechanical functionalities often reveals principles that inform new synthetic designs based on biological systems. Such approaches have traditionally found success in medical applications, and are now informing breakthroughs in diverse frontiers of science and engineering.

  5. Computational intelligence in multi-feature visual pattern recognition hand posture and face recognition using biologically inspired approaches

    CERN Document Server

    Pisharady, Pramod Kumar; Poh, Loh Ai


    This book presents a collection of computational intelligence algorithms that addresses issues in visual pattern recognition such as high computational complexity, abundance of pattern features, sensitivity to size and shape variations and poor performance against complex backgrounds. The book has 3 parts. Part 1 describes various research issues in the field with a survey of the related literature. Part 2 presents computational intelligence based algorithms for feature selection and classification. The algorithms are discriminative and fast. The main application area considered is hand posture recognition. The book also discusses utility of these algorithms in other visual as well as non-visual pattern recognition tasks including face recognition, general object recognition and cancer / tumor classification. Part 3 presents biologically inspired algorithms for feature extraction. The visual cortex model based features discussed have invariance with respect to appearance and size of the hand, and provide good...

  6. Real-Time Illumination Invariant Face Detection Using Biologically Inspired Feature Set and BP Neural Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reza Azad


    Full Text Available In recent years, face detection has been thoroughly studied due to its wide potential applications, including face recognition, human-computer interaction, video surveillance, etc.In this paper, a new and illumination invariant face detection method, based on features inspired by the human's visual cortexand applying BP neural network on the extracted featureset is proposed.A feature set is extracted from face and non-face images, by means of a feed-forward model, which contains a view and illumination invariant C2 features from all images in the dataset. Then, these C2 feature vector which derived from a cortex-like mechanism passed to a BP neural network. In the result part, the proposed approach is applied on FEI and Wild face detection databases and high accuracy rate is achieved. In addition, experimental results have demonstrated our proposed face detector outperforms the most of the successful face detection algorithms in the literature and gives the first best result on all tested challenging face detection databases.

  7. Pose-Independent Face Recognition Using Biologically Inspired Feature Set and Mixture of Experts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reza Azad


    Full Text Available Automatic face recognition system has received significant attention during the last decades due to its wide range of applications, such as security, human-computer interaction, visual surveillance, and so on. In this paper, a new and efficient face recognition method, based on features inspired by the human’s visual cortex and applying mixture of experts’ architecture on the extracted feature set is proposed. A feature set is extracted by means of a feed-forward model, which contains a view and illumination invariant C2 features from all images in the data set. Then, these C2 feature vector which derived from a cortex-like mechanism passed to a mixture of multilayer perceptron neural networks. In the result part, the proposed approach is applied on ORL and Yale databases and the accuracy rate achieved 99.75% and 100% respectively. In addition, experimental results have demonstrated our method robust in successful recognition of human faces even with variant lighting and poses.

  8. Biology-inspired microphysiological system approaches to solve the prediction dilemma of substance testing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Marx, Uwe; Andersson, Tommy B; Bahinski, Anthony; Beilmann, Mario; Beken, Sonja; Cassee, Flemming R; Cirit, Murat; Daneshian, Mardas; Fitzpatrick, Susan; Frey, Olivier; Gaertner, Claudia; Giese, Christoph; Griffith, Linda; Hartung, Thomas; Heringa, Minne B; Hoeng, Julia; de Jong, Wim H; Kojima, Hajime; Kuehnl, Jochen; Leist, Marcel; Luch, Andreas; Maschmeyer, Ilka; Sakharov, Dmitry; Sips, Adrienne J A M; Steger-Hartmann, Thomas; Tagle, Danilo A; Tonevitsky, Alexander; Tralau, Tewes; Tsyb, Sergej; van de Stolpe, Anja; Vandebriel, Rob; Vulto, Paul; Wang, Jufeng; Wiest, Joachim; Rodenburg, Marleen; Roth, Adrian


    The recent advent of microphysiological systems - microfluidic biomimetic devices that aspire to emulate the biology of human tissues, organs and circulation in vitro - is envisaged to enable a global paradigm shift in drug development. An extraordinary US governmental initiative and various dedicat

  9. Design and characterization of a biologically inspired quasi-passive prosthetic ankle-foot. (United States)

    Mooney, Luke M; Lai, Cara H; Rouse, Elliott J


    By design, commonly worn energy storage and release (ESR) prosthetic feet cannot provide biologically realistic ankle joint torque and angle profiles during walking. Additionally, their anthropomorphic, cantilever architecture causes their mechanical stiffness to decrease throughout the stance phase of walking, opposing the known trend of the biological ankle. In this study, the design of a quasi-passive pneumatic ankle-foot prosthesis is detailed that is able to replicate the biological ankle's torque and angle profiles during walking. The prosthetic ankle is comprised of a pneumatic piston, bending spring and solenoid valve. The mechanical properties of the pneumatic ankle prosthesis are characterized using a materials testing machine and the properties are compared to those from a common, passive ESR prosthetic foot. The characterization spanned a range of ankle equilibrium pressures and testing locations beneath the foot, analogous to the location of center of pressure within the stance phase of walking. The pneumatic ankle prosthesis was shown to provide biologically appropriate trends and magnitudes of torque, angle and stiffness behavior, when compared to the passive ESR prosthetic foot. Future work will focus on the development of a control system for the quasi-passive device and clinical testing of the pneumatic ankle to demonstrate efficacy.

  10. Comprehending process diagrams in biology education

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kragten, M.


    Students in secondary Science education seem to have difficulties with comprehending diagrams. Process diagrams are an important type of representation in Biology for explaining processes like protein synthesis, compound cycles, etc. In this thesis, we aimed at getting deeper insight into students’

  11. Impact of Game-Inspired Infographics on User Engagement and Information Processing in an eHealth Program (United States)

    Qian, Xiaokun; Deal, Allison M; Ribisl, Kurt M; Linnan, Laura A; Tate, Deborah F


    Background Online interventions providing individual health behavior assessment should deliver feedback in a way that is both understandable and engaging. This study focused on the potential for infographics inspired by the aesthetics of game design to contribute to these goals. Objective We conducted formative research to test game-inspired infographics against more traditional displays (eg, text-only, column chart) for conveying a behavioral goal and an individual’s behavior relative to the goal. We explored the extent to which the display type would influence levels of engagement and information processing. Methods Between-participants experiments compared game-inspired infographics with traditional formats in terms of outcomes related to information processing (eg, comprehension, cognitive load) and engagement (eg, attitudes toward the information, emotional tone). We randomly assigned participants (N=1162) to an experiment in 1 of 6 modules (tobacco use, alcohol use, vegetable consumption, fruit consumption, physical activity, and weight management). Results In the tobacco module, a game-inspired format (scorecard) was compared with text-only; there were no differences in attitudes and emotional tone, but the scorecard outperformed text-only on comprehension (P=.004) and decreased cognitive load (P=.006). For the other behaviors, we tested 2 game-inspired formats (scorecard, progress bar) and a traditional column chart; there were no differences in comprehension, but the progress bar outperformed the other formats on attitudes and emotional tone (P<.001 for all contrasts). Conclusions Across modules, a game-inspired infographic showed potential to outperform a traditional format for some study outcomes while not underperforming on other outcomes. Overall, findings support the use of game-inspired infographics in behavioral assessment feedback to enhance comprehension and engagement, which may lead to greater behavior change. PMID:27658469

  12. Biological System Behaviours and Natural-inspired Methods and Their Applications to Supply Chain Management


    Fan, Xuemei; Zhang, Shujun; Hapeshi, Kevin; Ynag, Y


    People have learnt from biological system behaviours and structures to design and develop a number of different kinds of optimisation algorithms that have been widely used in both theoretical study and practical applications in engineering and business management. An efficient supply chain is very important for companies to survive in global competitive market. An effective SCM (supply chain management) is the key for implement an efficient supply chain. Though there have been considerable am...

  13. Biologically-inspired synthetic dry adhesives for wall-climbing robots (United States)

    Murphy, Michael P.

    Animals such as insects, spiders, and lizards are capable of clinging to and climbing on a variety of surfaces, from rough stone to smooth silicon. Hairy microscale arrays of structures on their feet conform to surface roughness to create millions of points of contact, creating a large overall contact area. Weak intermolecular forces (van der Waals forces) between each fiber tip and the surface sum to large overall forces due to the high number of contacts. In this work we present the fabrication, characterization, and demonstration of synthetic polyurethane fibrillar adhesives inspired by these animals. Angled polymer micro-fiber arrays are fabricated and characterized. A tip modification technique is presented which enables fabrication of fibers with flat mushroom shaped tips which greatly increase the adhesion of the fibers, up to 5N/cm 2 (normal direction), and with a magnitude within the range of geckos (10 N/cm2) in the shear direction on smooth surfaces. We present a fabrication technique to create fibers with angled flat mushroom-shaped tips which replicate the directional characteristics of geckos, gripping in one direction (within the range of gecko adhesion) and releasing easily in the other. Multilevel hierarchical structures with specialized tips for roughness adaptation are also presented. Fiber hierarchies from the millimeter scale to the sub-micron scale are demonstrated, including three-level fiber fabrication with specialized tips. Hierarchical structures demonstrate up to 5 times the adhesion of an unstructured sample, and requiring up to 10 times the detachment energy. Finally, an agile, wireless, palm-sized wall climbing robot which uses the synthetic fibrillar dry adhesives to climb is presented. Waalbot , named after the van der Waals forces it uses to climb, exploits the attachment and detachment characteristics of the developed dry adhesives, capabilities include climbing smooth surfaces such as glass in any orientation on any surface slope

  14. Biologically inspired kinematic synergies enable linear balance control of a humanoid robot. (United States)

    Hauser, Helmut; Neumann, Gerhard; Ijspeert, Auke J; Maass, Wolfgang


    Despite many efforts, balance control of humanoid robots in the presence of unforeseen external or internal forces has remained an unsolved problem. The difficulty of this problem is a consequence of the high dimensionality of the action space of a humanoid robot, due to its large number of degrees of freedom (joints), and of non-linearities in its kinematic chains. Biped biological organisms face similar difficulties, but have nevertheless solved this problem. Experimental data reveal that many biological organisms reduce the high dimensionality of their action space by generating movements through linear superposition of a rather small number of stereotypical combinations of simultaneous movements of many joints, to which we refer as kinematic synergies in this paper. We show that by constructing two suitable non-linear kinematic synergies for the lower part of the body of a humanoid robot, balance control can in fact be reduced to a linear control problem, at least in the case of relatively slow movements. We demonstrate for a variety of tasks that the humanoid robot HOAP-2 acquires through this approach the capability to balance dynamically against unforeseen disturbances that may arise from external forces or from manipulating unknown loads.

  15. To Explore the Effect of Sub Consciousness on Sudden Moments of Inspiration (SMI) in the Sketching Process of Industrial Design (United States)

    Wu, Qun; Wang, Yecheng


    The purpose of this study is to identify the occurrence of Sudden Moments of Inspiration (SMI) in the sketching process of industrial design through experiments to explain the effect of sub consciousness on SMI. There are a pre-experiment and a formal experiment. In the formal experiment, nine undergraduates majoring in industrial design with same…

  16. Biologically Inspired Design Principles for Scalable, Robust, Adaptive, Decentralized Search and Automated Response (RADAR)

    CERN Document Server

    Moses, Melanie


    Distributed search problems are ubiquitous in Artificial Life (ALife). Many distributed search problems require identifying a rare and previously unseen event and producing a rapid response. This challenge amounts to finding and removing an unknown needle in a very large haystack. Traditional computational search models are unlikely to find, nonetheless, appropriately respond to, novel events, particularly given data distributed across multiple platforms in a variety of formats and sources with variable and unknown reliability. Biological systems have evolved solutions to distributed search and response under uncertainty. Immune systems and ant colonies efficiently scale up massively parallel search with automated response in highly dynamic environments, and both do so using distributed coordination without centralized control. These properties are relevant to ALife, where distributed, autonomous, robust and adaptive control is needed to design robot swarms, mobile computing networks, computer security system...

  17. Hyper-Morphology: Experimentations with bio-inspired design processes for adaptive spatial re-use

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Biloria, N.; Chang, J.R.


    Hyper-Morphology is an on-going research outlining a bottom-up evolutionary design process based on autonomous cellular building components. The research interfaces critical operational traits of the natural world (Evolutionary Development Biology, Embryology and Cellular Differentiation) with Evolu

  18. Biology-inspired microphysiological system approaches to solve the prediction dilemma of substance testing. (United States)

    Marx, Uwe; Andersson, Tommy B; Bahinski, Anthony; Beilmann, Mario; Beken, Sonja; Cassee, Flemming R; Cirit, Murat; Daneshian, Mardas; Fitzpatrick, Susan; Frey, Olivier; Gaertner, Claudia; Giese, Christoph; Griffith, Linda; Hartung, Thomas; Heringa, Minne B; Hoeng, Julia; de Jong, Wim H; Kojima, Hajime; Kuehnl, Jochen; Leist, Marcel; Luch, Andreas; Maschmeyer, Ilka; Sakharov, Dmitry; Sips, Adrienne J A M; Steger-Hartmann, Thomas; Tagle, Danilo A; Tonevitsky, Alexander; Tralau, Tewes; Tsyb, Sergej; van de Stolpe, Anja; Vandebriel, Rob; Vulto, Paul; Wang, Jufeng; Wiest, Joachim; Rodenburg, Marleen; Roth, Adrian


    The recent advent of microphysiological systems - microfluidic biomimetic devices that aspire to emulate the biology of human tissues, organs and circulation in vitro - is envisaged to enable a global paradigm shift in drug development. An extraordinary US governmental initiative and various dedicated research programs in Europe and Asia have led recently to the first cutting-edge achievements of human single-organ and multi-organ engineering based on microphysiological systems. The expectation is that test systems established on this basis would model various disease stages, and predict toxicity, immunogenicity, ADME profiles and treatment efficacy prior to clinical testing. Consequently, this technology could significantly affect the way drug substances are developed in the future. Furthermore, microphysiological system-based assays may revolutionize our current global programs of prioritization of hazard characterization for any new substances to be used, for example, in agriculture, food, ecosystems or cosmetics, thus, replacing laboratory animal models used currently. Thirty-six experts from academia, industry and regulatory bodies present here the results of an intensive workshop (held in June 2015, Berlin, Germany). They review the status quo of microphysiological systems available today against industry needs, and assess the broad variety of approaches with fit-for-purpose potential in the drug development cycle. Feasible technical solutions to reach the next levels of human biology in vitro are proposed. Furthermore, key organ-on-a-chip case studies, as well as various national and international programs are highlighted. Finally, a roadmap into the future is outlined, to allow for more predictive and regulatory-accepted substance testing on a global scale.

  19. Image processing and computing in structural biology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jiang, Linhua


    With the help of modern techniques of imaging processing and computing, image data obtained by electron cryo-microscopy of biomolecules can be reconstructed to three-dimensional biological models at sub-nanometer resolution. These models allow answering urgent problems in life science, for instance,

  20. Biologically Inspired Visual Model With Preliminary Cognition and Active Attention Adjustment. (United States)

    Qiao, Hong; Xi, Xuanyang; Li, Yinlin; Wu, Wei; Li, Fengfu


    Recently, many computational models have been proposed to simulate visual cognition process. For example, the hierarchical Max-Pooling (HMAX) model was proposed according to the hierarchical and bottom-up structure of V1 to V4 in the ventral pathway of primate visual cortex, which could achieve position- and scale-tolerant recognition. In our previous work, we have introduced memory and association into the HMAX model to simulate visual cognition process. In this paper, we improve our theoretical framework by mimicking a more elaborate structure and function of the primate visual cortex. We will mainly focus on the new formation of memory and association in visual processing under different circumstances as well as preliminary cognition and active adjustment in the inferior temporal cortex, which are absent in the HMAX model. The main contributions of this paper are: 1) in the memory and association part, we apply deep convolutional neural networks to extract various episodic features of the objects since people use different features for object recognition. Moreover, to achieve a fast and robust recognition in the retrieval and association process, different types of features are stored in separated clusters and the feature binding of the same object is stimulated in a loop discharge manner and 2) in the preliminary cognition and active adjustment part, we introduce preliminary cognition to classify different types of objects since distinct neural circuits in a human brain are used for identification of various types of objects. Furthermore, active cognition adjustment of occlusion and orientation is implemented to the model to mimic the top-down effect in human cognition process. Finally, our model is evaluated on two face databases CAS-PEAL-R1 and AR. The results demonstrate that our model exhibits its efficiency on visual recognition process with much lower memory storage requirement and a better performance compared with the traditional purely computational

  1. A Parallel Supercomputer Implementation of a Biological Inspired Neural Network and its use for Pattern Recognition (United States)

    de Ladurantaye, Vincent; Lavoie, Jean; Bergeron, Jocelyn; Parenteau, Maxime; Lu, Huizhong; Pichevar, Ramin; Rouat, Jean


    A parallel implementation of a large spiking neural network is proposed and evaluated. The neural network implements the binding by synchrony process using the Oscillatory Dynamic Link Matcher (ODLM). Scalability, speed and performance are compared for 2 implementations: Message Passing Interface (MPI) and Compute Unified Device Architecture (CUDA) running on clusters of multicore supercomputers and NVIDIA graphical processing units respectively. A global spiking list that represents at each instant the state of the neural network is described. This list indexes each neuron that fires during the current simulation time so that the influence of their spikes are simultaneously processed on all computing units. Our implementation shows a good scalability for very large networks. A complex and large spiking neural network has been implemented in parallel with success, thus paving the road towards real-life applications based on networks of spiking neurons. MPI offers a better scalability than CUDA, while the CUDA implementation on a GeForce GTX 285 gives the best cost to performance ratio. When running the neural network on the GTX 285, the processing speed is comparable to the MPI implementation on RQCHP's Mammouth parallel with 64 notes (128 cores).

  2. Biologically Inspired Modular Neural Control for a Leg-Wheel Hybrid Robot

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Manoonpong, Poramate; Wörgötter, Florentin; Laksanacharoen, Pudit


    processing and state memorization. Its outputs drive two front wheels while the rear wheel is controlled through a velocity regulating network (VRN) module. In parallel, a neural oscillator network module serves as a central pattern generator (CPG) controls leg movements for sidestepping. Stepping directions...

  3. A biologically inspired modular structure to control the sit-to-stand transfer of a biped robot. (United States)

    Andani, M Emadi; Bahrami, F; Maralani, P Jabedar


    In this study, a biologically inspired control structure to control the sit-to-stand (STS) transfer from a chair is developed and simulated. STS movement is consisted of two main phases. First phase of the movement is before leaving the seat (seat-off moment). In this phase seat reactions forces act on the body parts which are in contact with the seat. The second phase is after seat-off, where the only external forces acting on the body are ground reaction forces. A proper control algorithm of the STS transfer needs to consider switching between these two phases, which correspond to two different dynamical structures. The control structure developed and discussed in this work is based on the MOSAIC structure, proposed first by Wolpert and Kawato [1]. Original MOSAIC structure has a modular architecture which is based on multiple pairs of forward and inverse models of the dynamical system to be controlled, and each module is trained separately to learn one part of a given task. The number of effective modules is predetermined. We have developed a new method to train all modules simultaneously. This method is based on reinforcement and cooperative competitive learning, and the number of effective modules is determined automatically. In this study, the simulation was begun with four modules. Our results showed that only two modules out of four were selected to control the STS task. Responsibility of controlling the task was switched between the two modules around the seat-off moment.

  4. Dynamics Analysis of Fluid-Structure Interaction for a Biologically-inspired Biped Robot Running on Water

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linsen Xu


    Full Text Available A kinematics analysis of a biologically-inspired biped robot is carried out, and the trajectory of the robot foot is understood. For calculating the pressure distribution across a robot foot before touching the surface of water, the compression flow of air and the depression motion of the water surface are considered. The pressure model after touching the water surface has been built according to the theory of rigid body planar motion. The multi-material ALE algorithm is applied to emulate the course of the foot slapping water. The simulation results indicate that the model of the bionic robot can satisfy the water-running function. The real prototype of the robot is manufactured to test its function of running on water. When the biped robot is running on water, the average force generated by the propulsion mechanism is about 1.3N. The experimental results show that the propulsion system can satisfy the requirement of biped robot running on water.

  5. GPU Implementation of Real-Time Biologically Inspired Face Detection using CUDA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elham Askary


    Full Text Available In this paper massively parallel real-time face detection based on a visual attention and cortex-like mechanism of cognitive vision system is presented. As a first step, we use saliency map model to select salient face regions and HMAX C1 model to extract features from salient input image and then apply mixture of expert neural network to classify multi-view faces from nonface images. The saliency map model is a complex concept for bottom-up attention selection that includes many processes to find face regions in a visual science. Parallel real-time implementation on Graphics Processing Unit (GPU provides a solution for this kind of computationally intensive image processing. By implementing saliency map and HMAX C1 model on a multi-GPU platform using CUDA programming with memory bandwidth, we achieve good performance compared to recent CPU. Running on NVIDIA Geforce 8800 (GTX graphics card at resolution 640×480 detection rate of 97% is achieved. In addition, we evaluate our results using a height speed camera with other parallel methods on face detection application.

  6. Biological Sludge Stabilization; Fenton and Ozonation Processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miranzadeh M.B.1 PhD,


    Full Text Available Aims In biological wastewater treatment processes, a large amount of sludge is produced. Stabilization of sludge is essential before disposal because of the risks to human health and environment. Therefore, selecting an appropriate process for stabilization this sludge may efficiently decrease risks. The aim of this study was to examine the compound efficiency of the advanced Fenton and ozonation oxidation processes in stabilization of biological sludge. Instrument & Methods This experimental study was conducted on raw sludge taken from Kashan University of Medical Sciences’ Wastewater Treatment Plant in Iran during 2014. Fenton and ozonation oxidation processes were used for sludge stabilization. H2O2 and Fe2+ concentration, along with their mutual interaction, were measured using repeated measures model. Then the effects of pH and time reaction on reduction efficiency of volatile solids (VS were examined. Findings The maximum removal efficiencies in Fenton process at pH=3 and in ozonation process in pH=7 were obtained 85.1% and 92.9%, respectively. By increasing the reaction time from 30 to 90min, VS reduction efficiency in Fenton and ozonation processes increased and then reduced after 60min. The maximum reduction efficiencies of VS were obtained at 3000mg/l H2O2 concentration, So that the optimum ratio of Fe2+/H2O2 for sludge stabilization was 1000/3000mg/l with the efficiency of 91.5%. Conclusion Ozonation process efficiency in stabilizing biological wastewater sludge is higher than that of Fenton process.

  7. Biologically-inspired robust and adaptive multi-sensor fusion and active control (United States)

    Khosla, Deepak; Dow, Paul A.; Huber, David J.


    In this paper, we describe a method and system for robust and efficient goal-oriented active control of a machine (e.g., robot) based on processing, hierarchical spatial understanding, representation and memory of multimodal sensory inputs. This work assumes that a high-level plan or goal is known a priori or is provided by an operator interface, which translates into an overall perceptual processing strategy for the machine. Its analogy to the human brain is the download of plans and decisions from the pre-frontal cortex into various perceptual working memories as a perceptual plan that then guides the sensory data collection and processing. For example, a goal might be to look for specific colored objects in a scene while also looking for specific sound sources. This paper combines three key ideas and methods into a single closed-loop active control system. (1) Use high-level plan or goal to determine and prioritize spatial locations or waypoints (targets) in multimodal sensory space; (2) collect/store information about these spatial locations at the appropriate hierarchy and representation in a spatial working memory. This includes invariant learning of these spatial representations and how to convert between them; and (3) execute actions based on ordered retrieval of these spatial locations from hierarchical spatial working memory and using the "right" level of representation that can efficiently translate into motor actions. In its most specific form, the active control is described for a vision system (such as a pantilt- zoom camera system mounted on a robotic head and neck unit) which finds and then fixates on high saliency visual objects. We also describe the approach where the goal is to turn towards and sequentially foveate on salient multimodal cues that include both visual and auditory inputs.

  8. Modeling biology with HDL languages: a first step toward a genetic design automation tool inspired from microelectronics. (United States)

    Gendrault, Yves; Madec, Morgan; Lallement, Christophe; Haiech, Jacques


    Nowadays, synthetic biology is a hot research topic. Each day, progresses are made to improve the complexity of artificial biological functions in order to tend to complex biodevices and biosystems. Up to now, these systems are handmade by bioengineers, which require strong technical skills and leads to nonreusable development. Besides, scientific fields that share the same design approach, such as microelectronics, have already overcome several issues and designers succeed in building extremely complex systems with many evolved functions. On the other hand, in systems engineering and more specifically in microelectronics, the development of the domain has been promoted by both the improvement of technological processes and electronic design automation tools. The work presented in this paper paves the way for the adaptation of microelectronics design tools to synthetic biology. Considering the similarities and differences between the synthetic biology and microelectronics, the milestones of this adaptation are described. The first one concerns the modeling of biological mechanisms. To do so, a new formalism is proposed, based on an extension of the generalized Kirchhoff laws to biology. This way, a description of all biological mechanisms can be made with languages widely used in microelectronics. Our approach is therefore successfully validated on specific examples drawn from the literature.

  9. Biologically inspired growth of hydroxyapatite crystals on bio-organics-defined scaffolds

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Chunrong, E-mail: [Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Fujian University of Technology, Fuzhou 350108 (China); Li, Yuli; Nan, Kaihui [Eye Hospital, Wenzhou Medical College, Wenzhou 325027 (China)


    Graphical abstract: Petal-like crystals were observed to form on the surface of the BG/COL/ChS scaffolds. Highlights: ► Porous scaffolds were prepared using bioglass, collagen and chondroitin sulfate. ► Highly oriented HA crystals were grown on scaffolds using simulated body fluids ► The microstructure and orientation of HA were explained by molecular configuration. - Abstract: Several bio-organics-defined composite scaffolds were prepared using 58s-bioglass (BG), collagen (Col) and chondroitin sulfate (ChS). These scaffolds possess highly porous structure. X-ray diffraction of these scaffolds strongly indicated that hydroxyapatite (HA) crystals formed on their surfaces in simulated body fluids within 3 d, and similar formation process of crystals could be obtained on BG/Col and BG/Col/ChS scaffolds. The morphology and structure of the crystals were further examined by scanning electron microscopy. The results obtained indicate that an apatite with petal-like structure similar to that found on BG/Col scaffolds can be produced on BG/Col/ChS scaffolds through biomimetic synthesis, while that on BG/ChS scaffolds took place differently. The differences could be explained by self-assembly processes and the different macromolecular configurations of the Col and ChS fibrils which self-assemble spontaneously into their fibers. On the other hand, the bio-organics-defined composites have good cell biocompability. The results may be applicable to develop tailored biomaterials for peculiar bone substitute.

  10. Unnatural killer cells to prevent bloodborne metastasis: inspiration from biology and engineering. (United States)

    Mitchell, Michael J; King, Michael R


    Metastasis contributes to over 90% of cancer-related deaths. Many types of cancer metastasize via the bloodstream, where circulating tumor cells (CTCs) originating from the primary tumor can undergo selectin-mediated adhesion with the blood vessel wall and subsequently transmigrate to anatomically distant organs. In an effort to neutralize CTCs with the potential to form metastases, a new therapeutic approach has been developed in which circulating leukocytes are functionalized to target and kill cancer cells in the bloodstream. This approach mimics the cytotoxic activity of natural killer cells and the chemical engineering concept of a fluidized bed reactor, which increases the surface area for surface-catalyzed reactions. The resulting 'unnatural killer cells', proven effective in vitro with human blood and also in the living mouse, holds promise in neutralizing CTCs to interrupt the metastasis process.

  11. Writer-Reader Contagion of Inspiration and Related States: Conditional Process Analyses Within a Cross-Classified Writer × Reader Framework. (United States)

    Thrash, Todd M; Maruskin, Laura A; Moldovan, Emil G; Oleynick, Victoria C; Belzak, Will C


    A longstanding tradition in the humanities holds that a writer's inspiration is infectious, but this thesis has not been tested. We hypothesized that (a) inspiration is infectious, such that inspired writers are more inspiring to the average reader; (b) contagion is mediated by the insightfulness of the text; and (c) contagion is moderated by readers' openness to experience, such that open readers are more prone to contagion. To test these hypotheses, a sample of 195 student writers, each of whom wrote 1 poem, was crossed with a sample of 220 student readers, who read all poems. Data were available for 36,020 cells of the resulting Writer × Reader matrix. Our analytic approach integrated cross-classified multilevel modeling with conditional process analysis. As hypothesized, writers who were more inspired elicited higher levels of inspiration in the average reader. Inspiration contagion was mediated by the insightfulness and pleasantness of the text and was partially suppressed by originality. Inspiration contagion was moderated by reader openness. Moderated mediation analyses indicated that open readers were prone to contagion because they were tolerant of the originality and sublimity of inspired writing. Additional analyses differentiated contagion of inspiration from contagion of its covariates (awe, positive affect), documented effects of writer inspiration on reader enthrallment (awe, chills), and showed that writer effort is a poor predictor of reader states. The infectiousness of inspiration-through poetry, if not also through scripture and academic writing-suggests that a given instance of inspiration may have far-reaching cultural implications, including dissemination of innovations and ideologies. (PsycINFO Database Record

  12. On the Optimum Architecture of the Biologically Inspired Hierarchical Temporal Memory Model Applied to the Hand-Written Digit Recognition (United States)

    Štolc, Svorad; Bajla, Ivan


    In the paper we describe basic functions of the Hierarchical Temporal Memory (HTM) network based on a novel biologically inspired model of the large-scale structure of the mammalian neocortex. The focus of this paper is in a systematic exploration of possibilities how to optimize important controlling parameters of the HTM model applied to the classification of hand-written digits from the USPS database. The statistical properties of this database are analyzed using the permutation test which employs a randomization distribution of the training and testing data. Based on a notion of the homogeneous usage of input image pixels, a methodology of the HTM parameter optimization is proposed. In order to study effects of two substantial parameters of the architecture: the patch size and the overlap in more details, we have restricted ourselves to the single-level HTM networks. A novel method for construction of the training sequences by ordering series of the static images is developed. A novel method for estimation of the parameter maxDist based on the box counting method is proposed. The parameter sigma of the inference Gaussian is optimized on the basis of the maximization of the belief distribution entropy. Both optimization algorithms can be equally applied to the multi-level HTM networks as well. The influences of the parameters transitionMemory and requestedGroupCount on the HTM network performance have been explored. Altogether, we have investigated 2736 different HTM network configurations. The obtained classification accuracy results have been benchmarked with the published results of several conventional classifiers.

  13. Stochastic Simulation of Process Calculi for Biology

    CERN Document Server

    Phillips, Andrew; Paulevé, Loïc; 10.4204/EPTCS.40.1


    Biological systems typically involve large numbers of components with complex, highly parallel interactions and intrinsic stochasticity. To model this complexity, numerous programming languages based on process calculi have been developed, many of which are expressive enough to generate unbounded numbers of molecular species and reactions. As a result of this expressiveness, such calculi cannot rely on standard reaction-based simulation methods, which require fixed numbers of species and reactions. Rather than implementing custom stochastic simulation algorithms for each process calculus, we propose to use a generic abstract machine that can be instantiated to a range of process calculi and a range of reaction-based simulation algorithms. The abstract machine functions as a just-in-time compiler, which dynamically updates the set of possible reactions and chooses the next reaction in an iterative cycle. In this short paper we give a brief summary of the generic abstract machine, and show how it can be instant...

  14. Stochastic transport processes in discrete biological systems

    CERN Document Server

    Frehland, Eckart


    These notes are in part based on a course for advanced students in the applications of stochastic processes held in 1978 at the University of Konstanz. These notes contain the results of re­ cent studies on the stochastic description of ion transport through biological membranes. In particular, they serve as an introduction to an unified theory of fluctuations in complex biological transport systems. We emphasize that the subject of this volume is not to introduce the mathematics of stochastic processes but to present a field of theoretical biophysics in which stochastic methods are important. In the last years the study of membrane noise has become an important method in biophysics. Valuable information on the ion transport mechanisms in membranes can be obtained from noise analysis. A number of different processes such as the opening and closing of ion channels have been shown to be sources of the measured current or voltage fluctuations. Bio­ logical 'transport systems can be complex. For example, the tr...

  15. Diffusion processes and related topics in biology

    CERN Document Server

    Ricciardi, Luigi M


    These notes are based on a one-quarter course given at the Department of Biophysics and Theoretical Biology of the University of Chicago in 1916. The course was directed to graduate students in the Division of Biological Sciences with interests in population biology and neurobiology. Only a slight acquaintance with probability and differential equations is required of the reader. Exercises are interwoven with the text to encourage the reader to play a more active role and thus facilitate his digestion of the material. One aim of these notes is to provide a heuristic approach, using as little mathematics as possible, to certain aspects of the theory of stochastic processes that are being increasingly employed in some of the population biol­ ogy and neurobiology literature. While the subject may be classical, the nov­ elty here lies in the approach and point of view, particularly in the applica­ tions such as the approach to the neuronal firing problem and its related dif­ fusion approximations. It is a ple...

  16. Rotating Biological Contractors (RBC's). Instructor's Guide. Biological Treatment Process Control. (United States)

    Zickefoose, Charles S.

    This two-lesson unit on rotating biological contactors (RBC's) is designed to be used with students who have had some experience in wastewater treatment and a basic understanding of biological treatment. The first lesson provides information on the concepts and components of RBC treatment systems. The second lesson focuses on design operation and…

  17. Modeling delayed processes in biological systems (United States)

    Feng, Jingchen; Sevier, Stuart A.; Huang, Bin; Jia, Dongya; Levine, Herbert


    Delayed processes are ubiquitous in biological systems and are often characterized by delay differential equations (DDEs) and their extension to include stochastic effects. DDEs do not explicitly incorporate intermediate states associated with a delayed process but instead use an estimated average delay time. In an effort to examine the validity of this approach, we study systems with significant delays by explicitly incorporating intermediate steps. We show that such explicit models often yield significantly different equilibrium distributions and transition times as compared to DDEs with deterministic delay values. Additionally, different explicit models with qualitatively different dynamics can give rise to the same DDEs revealing important ambiguities. We also show that DDE-based predictions of oscillatory behavior may fail for the corresponding explicit model.

  18. Inspired Responses (United States)

    Steele, Carol Frederick


    In terms of teacher quality, Steele believes the best teachers have reached a stage she terms inspired, and that teachers move progressively through the stages of unaware, aware, and capable until the most reflective teachers finally reach the inspired level. Inspired teachers have a wide repertoire of teaching and class management techniques and…

  19. Image processing and recognition for biological images. (United States)

    Uchida, Seiichi


    This paper reviews image processing and pattern recognition techniques, which will be useful to analyze bioimages. Although this paper does not provide their technical details, it will be possible to grasp their main tasks and typical tools to handle the tasks. Image processing is a large research area to improve the visibility of an input image and acquire some valuable information from it. As the main tasks of image processing, this paper introduces gray-level transformation, binarization, image filtering, image segmentation, visual object tracking, optical flow and image registration. Image pattern recognition is the technique to classify an input image into one of the predefined classes and also has a large research area. This paper overviews its two main modules, that is, feature extraction module and classification module. Throughout the paper, it will be emphasized that bioimage is a very difficult target for even state-of-the-art image processing and pattern recognition techniques due to noises, deformations, etc. This paper is expected to be one tutorial guide to bridge biology and image processing researchers for their further collaboration to tackle such a difficult target.

  20. Stochastic Simulation of Process Calculi for Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Phillips


    Full Text Available Biological systems typically involve large numbers of components with complex, highly parallel interactions and intrinsic stochasticity. To model this complexity, numerous programming languages based on process calculi have been developed, many of which are expressive enough to generate unbounded numbers of molecular species and reactions. As a result of this expressiveness, such calculi cannot rely on standard reaction-based simulation methods, which require fixed numbers of species and reactions. Rather than implementing custom stochastic simulation algorithms for each process calculus, we propose to use a generic abstract machine that can be instantiated to a range of process calculi and a range of reaction-based simulation algorithms. The abstract machine functions as a just-in-time compiler, which dynamically updates the set of possible reactions and chooses the next reaction in an iterative cycle. In this short paper we give a brief summary of the generic abstract machine, and show how it can be instantiated with the stochastic simulation algorithm known as Gillespie's Direct Method. We also discuss the wider implications of such an abstract machine, and outline how it can be used to simulate multiple calculi simultaneously within a common framework.

  1. Biology-oriented synthesis of a natural-product inspired oxepane collection yields a small-molecule activator of the Wnt-pathway. (United States)

    Basu, Sudipta; Ellinger, Bernhard; Rizzo, Stefano; Deraeve, Céline; Schürmann, Markus; Preut, Hans; Arndt, Hans-Dieter; Waldmann, Herbert


    In Biology Oriented Synthesis the scaffolds of biologically relevant compound classes inspire the synthesis of focused compound collections enriched in bioactivity. This criterion is met by the structurally complex scaffolds of natural products (NPs) selected in evolution. The synthesis of NP-inspired compound collections approaching the complexity of NPs calls for the development of efficient synthetic methods. We have developed a one pot 4-7 step synthesis of mono-, bi-, and tricyclic oxepanes that resemble the core scaffolds of numerous NPs with diverse bioactivities. This sequence entails a ring-closing ene-yne metathesis reaction as key step and makes productive use of polymer-immobilized scavenger reagents. Biological profiling of a corresponding focused compound collection in a reporter gene assay monitoring for Wnt-signaling modulation revealed active Wntepanes. This unique class of small-molecule activators of the Wnt pathway modulates the van-Gogh-like receptor proteins (Vangl), which were previously identified in noncanonical Wnt signaling, and acts in synergy with the canonical activator protein (Wnt-3a).

  2. Rotating Biological Contactors (RBC's). Student Manual. Biological Treatment Process Control. (United States)

    Zickefoose, Charles S.

    This student manual provides the textual material for a unit on rotating biological contactors (RBC's). Topic areas considered include: (1) flow patterns of water through RBC installations; (2) basic concepts (shaft and stage); (3) characteristics of biomass; (4) mechanical features (bearings, mechanical drive systems, and air drive systems); (5)…

  3. Biologically Inspired Self-assembling Synthesis of Bone-like Nano-hydroxyapatite/PLGA- (PEG-ASP)n Composite: A New Biomimetic Bone Tissue Engineering Scaffold Material

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    A new biomimetic bone tissue engineering scaffold material, nano-HA/ PLGA-( PEG- ASP )n composite, was synthesized by a biologically inspired self assembling approach. A novel biodegradable PLGA( PEG-ASP ) n copolymer with pendant amine functional groups and enhanced hydrophilicity was synthesized by bulk ring-opening copolymerization by DL-lactide( DLLA ) and glycolide( GA ) with Aspartic acid ( ASP )-Polyethylene glycol( PEG ) alt-prepolymer. A Three-dimensional, porous scaffold of the PLGA-( PEG-ASP )n copolymer was fabricated by a solvent casting, particulate leaching process. The scaffold was then incubated in modified simulated body fluid ( mSBF ) . Growth of HA nanocrystals on the inner pore surfaces of the porous scaffold is confirmed by calcium ion binding analyses, SEM, mass increase measurements and quantification of phosphate content within scaffolds . SEM analysis demonstrated the nucleation and growth of a continuous bonelike, low crystalline carbonated HA nanocrystals on the inner pore surfawes of the PLGA-( PEG-ASP)n scaffolds. The amount of calcium binding, total mass and the mass of pbosphate on experimental PLGA-( PEG- ASP )n scaffolds at different incubation times in mSBF was significantly greater than that of control PLGA scaffolds . This nano-HA/ PLGA- ( PEG-ASP )n composite shows some features of natural bone both in main composition and hierarchical microstructure. The ASPPEG alt-prepolymer modified PLGA copolymer provide a controllable high surface density and distribution of anionic functional groups which would enhauce nucleation and growth of bonelike mineral following exposure to mSBF. This biomimetic treatment provides a simple method for surface funetionalization and subsequent mineral nucleation and self-assembling on biodegradable polymer scaffolds for tissue engineering.

  4. Oligonucleotide-templated chemical reactions: pushing the boundaries of a nature-inspired process. (United States)

    Percivalle, Claudia; Bartolo, Jean-François; Ladame, Sylvain


    Widespread in nature, oligonucleotide-templated reactions of phosphodiester bond formation have inspired chemists who are now applying this elegant strategy to the catalysis of a broad range of otherwise inefficient reactions. This review highlights the increasing diversity of chemical reactions that can be efficiently catalysed by an oligonucleotide template, using Watson-Crick base-pairing to bring both reagents in close enough proximity to react, thus increasing significantly their effective molarity. The applications of this elegant concept for nucleic acid sensing and controlled organic synthesis will also be discussed.

  5. Proofs of the Technical Results Justifying a Biologically Inspired Algorithm for Reactive Navigation of Nonholonomic Robots in Maze-Like Environments

    CERN Document Server

    Matveev, Alexey S; Savkin, Andrey V


    We present technical results justifying a method for guidance of a Dubins-like vehicle with saturated control towards a target in a steady simply connected maze-like environment. The vehicle always has access to to the target relative bearing angle and the distance to the nearest point of the maze if it is within the given sensor range. The proposed control law is composed by biologically inspired reflex-level rules. Mathematically rigorous analysis of this law is provided; its convergence and performance are confirmed by computer simulations and experiments with real robots.

  6. Optimization of a biological sulfate reduction process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lebel, A.


    A biological sulfate reduction process is presented. It is intended to treat sulfate wastes by converting them to hydrogen sulfide which can be further oxidized to elemental sulfur. An optimization study of a completely-mixed reactor system was performed. Major operating parameters were determined at the bench-scale level. The study was conducted in batch-culture experiments, using a mixed Desulfovibrio culture from sewage. Kinetic values were extrapolated using the Michaelis-Menten model, which best fitted the experimental data. The iron loading and the sulfate loading significantly affected the growth and metabolism of sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB). A model to determine V/sub m/ from the iron and sulfate loading values was explored. The model is limited by sulfate loading greater than 4.3 g/l, where bacterial growth is inhibited. Iron loading is not anticipated to suppress the bacterial metabolism efficiency since it remained in the linear pattern even at inhibition levels. Studies of the metabolic behavior of SRB, using lactic acid as the carbon source, showed a requirement of 2.7 moles of lactate for each mole of sulfate. This technique and its application to the sulfur recovery process are discussed.

  7. Process efficiency simulation for key process parameters in biological methanogenesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sébastien Bernacchi


    Full Text Available New generation biofuels are a suitable approach to produce energy carriers in an almost CO2 neutral way. A promising reaction is the conversion of CO2 and H2 to CH4. This contribution aims at elucidating a bioprocess comprised of a core reaction unit using microorganisms from the Archaea life domain, which metabolize CO2 and H2 to CH4, followed by a gas purification step. The process is simulated and analyzed thermodynamically using the Aspen Plus process simulation environment. The goal of the study was to quantify effects of process parameters on overall process efficiency using a kinetic model derived from previously published experimental results. The used empirical model links the production rate of CH4 and biomass to limiting reactant concentrations. In addition, Aspen Plus was used to improve bioprocess quantification. Impacts of pressure as well as dilution of reactant gas with up to 70% non-reactive gas on overall process efficiency was evaluated. Pressure in the reactor unit of 11 bar at 65℃ with a pressure of 21 bar for gas purification led to an overall process efficiency comprised between 66% and 70% for gaseous product and between 73% and 76% if heat of compression is considered a valuable product. The combination of 2 bar pressure in the reactor and 21 bar for purification was the most efficient combination of parameters. This result shows Aspen Plus potential for similar bioprocess development as it accounts for the energetic aspect of the entire process. In fact, the optimum for the overall process efficiency was found to differ from the optimum of the reaction unit. High efficiency of over 70% demonstrates that biological methanogenesis is a promising alternative for a chemical methanation reaction.

  8. Reading biological processes from nucleotide sequences (United States)

    Murugan, Anand

    Cellular processes have traditionally been investigated by techniques of imaging and biochemical analysis of the molecules involved. The recent rapid progress in our ability to manipulate and read nucleic acid sequences gives us direct access to the genetic information that directs and constrains biological processes. While sequence data is being used widely to investigate genotype-phenotype relationships and population structure, here we use sequencing to understand biophysical mechanisms. We present work on two different systems. First, in chapter 2, we characterize the stochastic genetic editing mechanism that produces diverse T-cell receptors in the human immune system. We do this by inferring statistical distributions of the underlying biochemical events that generate T-cell receptor coding sequences from the statistics of the observed sequences. This inferred model quantitatively describes the potential repertoire of T-cell receptors that can be produced by an individual, providing insight into its potential diversity and the probability of generation of any specific T-cell receptor. Then in chapter 3, we present work on understanding the functioning of regulatory DNA sequences in both prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Here we use experiments that measure the transcriptional activity of large libraries of mutagenized promoters and enhancers and infer models of the sequence-function relationship from this data. For the bacterial promoter, we infer a physically motivated 'thermodynamic' model of the interaction of DNA-binding proteins and RNA polymerase determining the transcription rate of the downstream gene. For the eukaryotic enhancers, we infer heuristic models of the sequence-function relationship and use these models to find synthetic enhancer sequences that optimize inducibility of expression. Both projects demonstrate the utility of sequence information in conjunction with sophisticated statistical inference techniques for dissecting underlying biophysical


    Anaerobic biological processes effectively reduce perchlorate to chloride. However, the effluent can be biologically unstable, high in particulates and high in disinfection by-product precursor compounds. Such an effluent would be unsuitable for transmission into a drinking water...

  10. Parallel Processing and Bio-inspired Computing for Biomedical Image Registration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silviu Ioan Bejinariu


    Full Text Available Image Registration (IR is an optimization problem computing optimal parameters of a geometric transform used to overlay one or more source images to a given model by maximizing a similarity measure. In this paper the use of bio-inspired optimization algorithms in image registration is analyzed. Results obtained by means of three different algorithms are compared: Bacterial Foraging Optimization Algorithm (BFOA, Genetic Algorithm (GA and Clonal Selection Algorithm (CSA. Depending on the images type, the registration may be: area based, which is slow but more precise, and features based, which is faster. In this paper a feature based approach based on the Scale Invariant Feature Transform (SIFT is proposed. Finally, results obtained using sequential and parallel implementations on multi-core systems for area based and features based image registration are compared.

  11. Bio-inspired vision (United States)

    Posch, C.


    Nature still outperforms the most powerful computers in routine functions involving perception, sensing and actuation like vision, audition, and motion control, and is, most strikingly, orders of magnitude more energy-efficient than its artificial competitors. The reasons for the superior performance of biological systems are subject to diverse investigations, but it is clear that the form of hardware and the style of computation in nervous systems are fundamentally different from what is used in artificial synchronous information processing systems. Very generally speaking, biological neural systems rely on a large number of relatively simple, slow and unreliable processing elements and obtain performance and robustness from a massively parallel principle of operation and a high level of redundancy where the failure of single elements usually does not induce any observable system performance degradation. In the late 1980`s, Carver Mead demonstrated that silicon VLSI technology can be employed in implementing ``neuromorphic'' circuits that mimic neural functions and fabricating building blocks that work like their biological role models. Neuromorphic systems, as the biological systems they model, are adaptive, fault-tolerant and scalable, and process information using energy-efficient, asynchronous, event-driven methods. In this paper, some basics of neuromorphic electronic engineering and its impact on recent developments in optical sensing and artificial vision are presented. It is demonstrated that bio-inspired vision systems have the potential to outperform conventional, frame-based vision acquisition and processing systems in many application fields and to establish new benchmarks in terms of redundancy suppression/data compression, dynamic range, temporal resolution and power efficiency to realize advanced functionality like 3D vision, object tracking, motor control, visual feedback loops, etc. in real-time. It is argued that future artificial vision systems

  12. Bio-Inspired Electronic Circuits and Stochastic Information Processing Systems exploiting Noise and Fluctuations


    Gonzalez Carabarin, Lizeth


    Current technological demands look for smaller, faster and more efficient systems. However, such demands are limited mainly by physical properties of devices (e.g. size of transistors, increase of electrical noise, etc.). At this point alternative solutions may have a response for such demands. The study of biological systems may offer a different perspective to fulfill such requirements. Biological structures have been optimized during millions of years of evolution resulting in power-eff...

  13. Self-Repairing Membranes for Inflatable Structures Inspired by a Rapid Wound Sealing Process of Climbing Plants

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Markus Rampf; Olga Speck; Thomas Speck; Rolf H. Luchsinger


    A new self-repairing membrane for inflatable light weight structures such as rubber boats or Tensairity(R) constructions is presented. Inspired by rapid self-sealing processes in plants, a thin soft cellular polyurethane foam coating is applied on the inside of a fabric substrate, which closes the fissure if the membrane is punctured with a spike. Experimental tests are carried out with a purpose built setup by measuring the air mass flow through a leak in a damaged membrane sample. It is shown that the weight per unit area of the self-repairing foam as well as the curing of the two component PU-foam under an overpressure influence the repair efficiency. Curing the foam under overpressure affects the relative density as well as the microstructure of the foam coatings. Maximal median repair efficiencies of 0.999 have been obtained with 0.16 g·cm-2 foam cured at 1 bar overpressure. These results suggest that the bio-inspired technique has the potential to extend the functional integrity of injured inflatable structures dramatically.

  14. Molecular plasma deposition: biologically inspired nanohydroxyapatite coatings on anodized nanotubular titanium for improving osteoblast density

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Balasundaram G


    Full Text Available Ganesan Balasundaram,1 Daniel M Storey,1 Thomas J Webster2,3 1Chameleon Scientific, Longmont, CO, USA; 2Department of Chemical Engineering, Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA; 3Center of Excellence for Advanced Materials Research, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia Abstract: In order to begin to prepare a novel orthopedic implant that mimics the natural bone environment, the objective of this in vitro study was to synthesize nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite (NHA and coat it on titanium (Ti using molecular plasma deposition (MPD. NHA was synthesized through a wet chemical process followed by a hydrothermal treatment. NHA and micron sized hydroxyapatite (MHA were prepared by processing NHA coatings at 500°C and 900°C, respectively. The coatings were characterized before and after sintering using scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, and X-ray diffraction. The results revealed that the post-MPD heat treatment of up to 500°C effectively restored the structural and topographical integrity of NHA. In order to determine the in vitro biological responses of the MPD-coated surfaces, the attachment and spreading of osteoblasts (bone-forming cells on the uncoated, NHA-coated, and MHA-coated anodized Ti were investigated. Most importantly, the NHA-coated substrates supported a larger number of adherent cells than the MHA-coated and uncoated substrates. The morphology of these cells was assessed by scanning electron microscopy and the observed shapes were different for each substrate type. The present results are the first reports using MPD in the framework of hydroxyapatite coatings on Ti to enhance osteoblast responses and encourage further studies on MPD-based hydroxyapatite coatings on Ti for improved orthopedic applications. Keywords: hydroxyapatite, anodization, nanotechnology

  15. A Reconfigurable and Biologically Inspired Paradigm for Computation Using Network-On-Chip and Spiking Neural Networks


    Jim Harkin; Fearghal Morgan; Liam McDaid; Steve Hall; Brian McGinley; Seamus Cawley


    FPGA devices have emerged as a popular platform for the rapid prototyping of biological Spiking Neural Networks (SNNs) applications, offering the key requirement of reconfigurability. However, FPGAs do not efficiently realise the biologically plausible neuron and synaptic models of SNNs, and current FPGA routing structures cannot accommodate the high levels of interneuron connectivity inherent in complex SNNs. This paper highlights and discusses the current challenges of implementing scalable...

  16. Biologically inspired highly durable iron phthalocyanine catalysts for oxygen reduction reaction in polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells. (United States)

    Li, Wenmu; Yu, Aiping; Higgins, Drew C; Llanos, Bernard G; Chen, Zhongwei


    In the present work, we have designed and synthesized a new highly durable iron phtalocyanine based nonprecious oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) catalyst (Fe-SPc) for polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs). The Fe-SPc, with a novel structure inspired by that of naturally occurring oxygen activation catalysts, is prepared by a nonpyrolyzing method, allowing adequate control of the atomic structure and surface properties of the material. Significantly improved ORR stability of the Fe-SPc is observed compared with the commercial Fe-Pc catalysts. The Fe-SPc has similar activity to that of the commercial Fe-Pc initially, while the Fe-SPc displays 4.6 times higher current density than that of the commercial Fe-Pc after 10 sweep potential cycles, and a current density that is 7.4 times higher after 100 cycles. This has been attributed to the incorporation of electron-donating functional groups, along with a high degree of steric hindrance maintaining active site isolation. Nonprecious Fe-SPc is promising as a potential alternative ORR electrocatalyst for PEMFCs.


    EcoMat, Inc. of Hayward, California (EcoMat) has developed an ex situ anoxic biofilter biodenitrification (BDN) process. The process uses specific biocarriers and bacteria to treat nitrate-contaminated water and employs a patented reactor that retains biocarrier within the syste...

  18. Biological processes of the northern Indian Ocean

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Madhupratap, M.; Parulekar, A.H.

    Physical processes such as wind-driven coastal run-off during the monsoons and convective overturning of surface waters due to winter cooling bring in nutrients into the euphotic zone and enhance primary productivity of the northern Indian Ocean...

  19. Biomimetic bio-inspired biomorph sustainable? An attempt to classify and clarify biology-derived technical developments. (United States)

    Speck, Olga; Speck, David; Horn, Rafael; Gantner, Johannes; Sedlbauer, Klaus Peter


    Over the last few decades, the systematic approach of knowledge transfer from biological concept generators to technical applications has received increasing attention, particularly because marketable bio-derived developments are often described as sustainable. The objective of this paper is to rationalize and refine the discussion about bio-derived developments also with respect to sustainability by taking descriptive, normative and emotional aspects into consideration. In the framework of supervised learning, a dataset of 70 biology-derived and technology-derived developments characterised by 9 different attributes together with their respective values and assigned to one of 17 classes was created. On the basis of the dataset a decision tree was generated which can be used as a straightforward classification tool to identify biology-derived and technology-derived developments. The validation of the applied learning procedure achieved an average accuracy of 90.0%. Additional extraordinary qualities of technical applications are generally discussed by means of selected biology-derived and technology-derived examples with reference to normative (contribution to sustainability) and emotional aspects (aesthetics and symbolic character). In the context of a case study from the building sector, all aspects are critically discussed.

  20. Recent Developments in Biological Hydrogen Production Processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available Biohydrogen production technology can utilize renewable energy sources like biomass for the generation of hydrogen, the cleanest form of energy for the use of mankind. However, major constraints to the commercialization of these processes include lower hydrogen yields and rates of hydrogen production. To overcome these bottlenecks intensive research work has already been carried out on the advancement of these processes such as the development of genetically modified microorganisms, the improvement of the bioreactor design, molecular engineering of the key enzyme hydrogenases, the development of two stage processes, etc. The present paper explores the recent advancements that have been made till date and also presents the state of the art in molecular strategies to improve the hydrogen production.

  1. Hyper-morphology: Experimentations with bio-inspired design processes for adaptive spatial re-use

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chang, J.R.


    This article is a newer version of a paper originally published in the eCAADe 2013 Conference Proceedings Computation & Performance. Hyper-Morphology is an on-going research outlining a bottom-up evolutionary design process based on autonomous cellular building components. The research interfaces c

  2. A Reconfigurable and Biologically Inspired Paradigm for Computation Using Network-On-Chip and Spiking Neural Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jim Harkin


    Full Text Available FPGA devices have emerged as a popular platform for the rapid prototyping of biological Spiking Neural Networks (SNNs applications, offering the key requirement of reconfigurability. However, FPGAs do not efficiently realise the biologically plausible neuron and synaptic models of SNNs, and current FPGA routing structures cannot accommodate the high levels of interneuron connectivity inherent in complex SNNs. This paper highlights and discusses the current challenges of implementing scalable SNNs on reconfigurable FPGAs. The paper proposes a novel field programmable neural network architecture (EMBRACE, incorporating low-power analogue spiking neurons, interconnected using a Network-on-Chip architecture. Results on the evaluation of the EMBRACE architecture using the XOR benchmark problem are presented, and the performance of the architecture is discussed. The paper also discusses the adaptability of the EMBRACE architecture in supporting fault tolerant computing.

  3. Hydrogen production by biological processes: a survey of literature

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Das, Debabrata [Indian Inst. of Technology, Dept. of Biotechnology, Kharagpur (India); Miami Univ., Clean Energy Research Inst., Coral Gables, FL (United States); Veziroglu, T. Nejat [Miami Univ., Clean Energy Research Inst., Coral Gables, FL (United States)


    Hydrogen is the fuel of the future mainly due to its high conversion efficiency, recyclability and nonpolluting nature. Biological hydrogen production processes are found to be more environment friendly and less energy intensive as compared to thermochemical and electrochemical processes. They are mostly controlled by either photosynthetic or fermentative organisms. Till today, more emphasis has been given on the former processes. Nitrogenase and hydrogenase play very important roles. Genetic manipulation of cyanobacteria (hydrogenase negative gene) improves the hydrogen generation. The paper presents a survey of biological hydrogen production processes. The micro-organism and biochemical pathways involved in hydrogen generation processes are presented in some detail. Several developmental works are discussed. Immobilised system is found suitable for the continuous hydrogen production. About 28% of energy can be recovered in the form of hydrogen using sucrose as substrate. Fermentative hydrogen production processes have some edge over the other biological processes. (Author)

  4. VI International Workshop on Nature Inspired Cooperative Strategies for Optimization

    CERN Document Server

    Otero, Fernando; Masegosa, Antonio


    Biological and other natural processes have always been a source of inspiration for computer science and information technology. Many emerging problem solving techniques integrate advanced evolution and cooperation strategies, encompassing a range of spatio-temporal scales for visionary conceptualization of evolutionary computation. This book is a collection of research works presented in the VI International Workshop on Nature Inspired Cooperative Strategies for Optimization (NICSO) held in Canterbury, UK. Previous editions of NICSO were held in Granada, Spain (2006 & 2010), Acireale, Italy (2007), Tenerife, Spain (2008), and Cluj-Napoca, Romania (2011). NICSO 2013 and this book provides a place where state-of-the-art research, latest ideas and emerging areas of nature inspired cooperative strategies for problem solving are vigorously discussed and exchanged among the scientific community. The breadth and variety of articles in this book report on nature inspired methods and applications such as Swarm In...

  5. Advanced Functional Nanomaterials for Biological Processes (United States)


    phantom and in animal mode. The expected outcome—the assessment of a patient’s entire blood volume (in adults 5 L)—will provide a significant (100...formation. We hypothesized that such a study could result in a possible vaccine for osteoporosis . 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 3 3.5 4 Control SW 20 SW40 SWCPE...GCNFs) were produced by a single-step reduction process and used for the growth and differentiation of human adult stem cells. The nanomaterials were

  6. Electron beam/biological processing of anaerobic and aerobic sludge (United States)

    Čuba, V.; Pospíšil, M.; Múčka, V.; Jeníček, P.; Dohányos, M.; Zábranská, J.


    Besides common chemical and biological methods, the radiation technology is a promising way of sludge treatment. The paper describes possibilities of combined accelerated electrons/biological processing of both anaerobic and aerobic sludge. Besides one-shot experiments, experimental reactors for the simulation of anaerobic processes have been used. Main effort has been aimed to decrease organic compounds concentration and overall volume of solids, to improve some physico-chemical parameters of sludge, to validate hygienisation effects of the ionising radiation, and in the case of anaerobic sludge, to increase the volume of the produced biogas. Positive effects of the electron beam processing have been observed on all previously named parameters.

  7. An introduction to stochastic processes with applications to biology

    CERN Document Server

    Allen, Linda J S


    An Introduction to Stochastic Processes with Applications to Biology, Second Edition presents the basic theory of stochastic processes necessary in understanding and applying stochastic methods to biological problems in areas such as population growth and extinction, drug kinetics, two-species competition and predation, the spread of epidemics, and the genetics of inbreeding. Because of their rich structure, the text focuses on discrete and continuous time Markov chains and continuous time and state Markov processes.New to the Second EditionA new chapter on stochastic differential equations th

  8. Facial expression recognition using biologically inspired features and SVM%基于生物启发特征和SVM的人脸表情识别

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    穆国旺; 王阳; 郭蔚


    将C1特征应用于静态图像人脸表情识别,提出了一种新的基于生物启发特征和SVM的表情识别算法。提取人脸图像的C1特征,利用PCA+LDA方法对特征进行降维,用SVM进行分类。在JAFFE和Extended Cohn-Kanade(CK+)人脸表情数据库上的实验结果表明,该算法具有较高的识别率,是一种有效的人脸表情识别方法。%C1 features are introduced to facial expression recognition for static images, and a new algorithm for facial expression recognition based on Biologically Inspired Features(BIFs)and SVM is proposed. C1 features of the facial images are extracted, PCA+LDA method is used to reduce the dimensionality of the C1 features, SVM is used for classifi-cation of the expression. The experiments on the JAFFE and Extended Cohn-Kanade(CK+)facial expression data sets show the effectiveness and the good performance of the algorithm.

  9. Decoding designers' inspiration process

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gonçalves, M.


    Every great invention, innovative design or visionary art piece ever created started in the same way: with a blank canvas. However, you never begin a new project with a completely clean slate: besides memories, past experiences and general knowledge, all of us are constantly surrounded by informatio

  10. Hidden Markov processes theory and applications to biology

    CERN Document Server

    Vidyasagar, M


    This book explores important aspects of Markov and hidden Markov processes and the applications of these ideas to various problems in computational biology. The book starts from first principles, so that no previous knowledge of probability is necessary. However, the work is rigorous and mathematical, making it useful to engineers and mathematicians, even those not interested in biological applications. A range of exercises is provided, including drills to familiarize the reader with concepts and more advanced problems that require deep thinking about the theory. Biological applications are t

  11. Towards the understanding of network information processing in biology (United States)

    Singh, Vijay

    Living organisms perform incredibly well in detecting a signal present in the environment. This information processing is achieved near optimally and quite reliably, even though the sources of signals are highly variable and complex. The work in the last few decades has given us a fair understanding of how individual signal processing units like neurons and cell receptors process signals, but the principles of collective information processing on biological networks are far from clear. Information processing in biological networks, like the brain, metabolic circuits, cellular-signaling circuits, etc., involves complex interactions among a large number of units (neurons, receptors). The combinatorially large number of states such a system can exist in makes it impossible to study these systems from the first principles, starting from the interactions between the basic units. The principles of collective information processing on such complex networks can be identified using coarse graining approaches. This could provide insights into the organization and function of complex biological networks. Here I study models of biological networks using continuum dynamics, renormalization, maximum likelihood estimation and information theory. Such coarse graining approaches identify features that are essential for certain processes performed by underlying biological networks. We find that long-range connections in the brain allow for global scale feature detection in a signal. These also suppress the noise and remove any gaps present in the signal. Hierarchical organization with long-range connections leads to large-scale connectivity at low synapse numbers. Time delays can be utilized to separate a mixture of signals with temporal scales. Our observations indicate that the rules in multivariate signal processing are quite different from traditional single unit signal processing.

  12. Inspirational Journey

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Artists from across Europe and Asia ventured into the remote Chinese countryside to seek inspiration from the Miao Ethnic group "I’ve never been to Asia before and everything is strange and wonderful:supermarkets and shopping mails,even the air- port seemed exotic!"wrote Ula Sickle,a choreographer from Poland on her blog under the name"chopstick diaries."Ula was one of the 18 foreign and domestic artists participating in a cultural exchange project called the Pointe to Point: Asia-Europe Dance Forum.It aims to empower aspiring young artists from Asia and Europe to reflect upon their views of

  13. Boolean Models of Biological Processes Explain Cascade-Like Behavior. (United States)

    Chen, Hao; Wang, Guanyu; Simha, Rahul; Du, Chenghang; Zeng, Chen


    Biological networks play a key role in determining biological function and therefore, an understanding of their structure and dynamics is of central interest in systems biology. In Boolean models of such networks, the status of each molecule is either "on" or "off" and along with the molecules interact with each other, their individual status changes from "on" to "off" or vice-versa and the system of molecules in the network collectively go through a sequence of changes in state. This sequence of changes is termed a biological process. In this paper, we examine the common perception that events in biomolecular networks occur sequentially, in a cascade-like manner, and ask whether this is likely to be an inherent property. In further investigations of the budding and fission yeast cell-cycle, we identify two generic dynamical rules. A Boolean system that complies with these rules will automatically have a certain robustness. By considering the biological requirements in robustness and designability, we show that those Boolean dynamical systems, compared to an arbitrary dynamical system, statistically present the characteristics of cascadeness and sequentiality, as observed in the budding and fission yeast cell- cycle. These results suggest that cascade-like behavior might be an intrinsic property of biological processes.

  14. Image Analysis for MRI Based Brain Tumor Detection and Feature Extraction Using Biologically Inspired BWT and SVM (United States)

    Ray, Arun Kumar; Thethi, Har Pal


    The segmentation, detection, and extraction of infected tumor area from magnetic resonance (MR) images are a primary concern but a tedious and time taking task performed by radiologists or clinical experts, and their accuracy depends on their experience only. So, the use of computer aided technology becomes very necessary to overcome these limitations. In this study, to improve the performance and reduce the complexity involves in the medical image segmentation process, we have investigated Berkeley wavelet transformation (BWT) based brain tumor segmentation. Furthermore, to improve the accuracy and quality rate of the support vector machine (SVM) based classifier, relevant features are extracted from each segmented tissue. The experimental results of proposed technique have been evaluated and validated for performance and quality analysis on magnetic resonance brain images, based on accuracy, sensitivity, specificity, and dice similarity index coefficient. The experimental results achieved 96.51% accuracy, 94.2% specificity, and 97.72% sensitivity, demonstrating the effectiveness of the proposed technique for identifying normal and abnormal tissues from brain MR images. The experimental results also obtained an average of 0.82 dice similarity index coefficient, which indicates better overlap between the automated (machines) extracted tumor region with manually extracted tumor region by radiologists. The simulation results prove the significance in terms of quality parameters and accuracy in comparison to state-of-the-art techniques.

  15. Classification of biological and non-biological fluvial particles using image processing and artificial neural network (United States)

    Shrestha, Bim Prasad; Shrestha, Nabin Kumar; Poudel, Laxman


    Particles flowing along with water largely affect safe drinking water, irrigation, aquatic life preservation and hydropower generation. This research describes activities that lead to development of fluvial particle characterization that includes detection of biological and non-biological particles and shape characterization using Image Processing and Artificial Neural Network (ANN). Fluvial particles are characterized based on multi spectral images processing using ANN. Images of wavelength of 630nm and 670nm are taken as most distinctive characterizing properties of biological and non-biological particles found in Bagmati River of Nepal. The samples were collected at pre-monsoon, monsoon and post-monsoon seasons. Random samples were selected and multi spectral images are processed using MATLAB 6.5. Thirty matrices were built from each sample. The obtained data of 42 rows and 60columns were taken as input training with an output matrix of 42 rows and 2 columns. Neural Network of Perceptron model was created using a transfer function. The system was first validated and later on tested at 18 different strategic locations of Bagmati River of Kathmandu Valley, Nepal. This network classified biological and non biological particles. Development of new non-destructive technique to characterize biological and non-biological particles from fluvial sample in a real time has a significance breakthrough. This applied research method and outcome is an attractive model for real time monitoring of particles and has many applications that can throw a significant outlet to many researches and for effective utilization of water resources. It opened a new horizon of opportunities for basic and applied research at Kathmandu University in Nepal.

  16. Discovering networks of perturbed biological processes in hepatocyte cultures.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher D Lasher

    Full Text Available The liver plays a vital role in glucose homeostasis, the synthesis of bile acids and the detoxification of foreign substances. Liver culture systems are widely used to test adverse effects of drugs and environmental toxicants. The two most prevalent liver culture systems are hepatocyte monolayers (HMs and collagen sandwiches (CS. Despite their wide use, comprehensive transcriptional programs and interaction networks in these culture systems have not been systematically investigated. We integrated an existing temporal transcriptional dataset for HM and CS cultures of rat hepatocytes with a functional interaction network of rat genes. We aimed to exploit the functional interactions to identify statistically significant linkages between perturbed biological processes. To this end, we developed a novel approach to compute Contextual Biological Process Linkage Networks (CBPLNs. CBPLNs revealed numerous meaningful connections between different biological processes and gene sets, which we were successful in interpreting within the context of liver metabolism. Multiple phenomena captured by CBPLNs at the process level such as regulation, downstream effects, and feedback loops have well described counterparts at the gene and protein level. CBPLNs reveal high-level linkages between pathways and processes, making the identification of important biological trends more tractable than through interactions between individual genes and molecules alone. Our approach may provide a new route to explore, analyze, and understand cellular responses to internal and external cues within the context of the intricate networks of molecular interactions that control cellular behavior.

  17. Chemical and biological flocculation process to treat municipal sewage and analysis of biological function

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XIA Si-qing; YANG Dian-hai; XU Bin; ZHAO Jian-fu


    The pilot-scale experimental apparatus and the procedure of the chemical and biological flocculation process to verify the feasibility in treating Shanghai municipal sewage were introduced in this paper. In addition, the biological function of the process was discussed. The results of optimal running showed that in the reaction tank, the concentration of mixed liquor suspended solid(MLSS) was2 g/L, hydraulic retention time(HRT) was 35 min, dosage of liquid polyaluminium chloride(PAC) was 60 mg/L, and the concentration of polyacrylamide(PAM) was 0.5 mg/L. The effluent average concentrations of CODcr, TP, SS and BOD5 were 50 mg/L, 0.62 mg/L, 18mg/L, and 17 mg/L, respectively. These were better than the designed demand. In addition, the existence of biological degradation in this system was proven by several methods. The removal efficiencies of the chemical and biological flocculation process were 20% higher than that of the chemical flocculation process above at the same coagulant dosage. The treatment process under different situations was evaluated on a pilot-scale experiment, and the results provided magnificent parameters and optimal condition for future operation of the plant.

  18. Cancer systems biology: signal processing for cancer research

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Olli Yli-Harja; Antti Ylip(a)(a); Matti Nykter; Wei Zhang


    In this editorial we introduce the research paradigms of signal processing in the era of systems biology. Signal processing is a field of science traditionally focused on modeling electronic and communications systems, but recently it has turned to biological applications with astounding results. The essence of signal processing is to describe the natural world by mathematical models and then, based on these models, develop efficient computational tools for solving engineering problems. Here, we underline, with examples, the endless possibilities which arise when the battle-hardened tools of engineering are applied to solve the problems that have tormented cancer researchers. Based on this approach, a new field has emerged, called cancer systems biology. Despite its short history, cancer systems biology has already produced several success stories tackling previously impracticable problems. Perhaps most importantly, it has been accepted as an integral part of the major endeavors of cancer research, such as analyzing the genomic and epigenomic data produced by The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) project. Finally, we show that signal processing and cancer research, two fields that are seemingly distant from each other, have merged into a field that is indeed more than the sum of its parts.

  19. Cancer systems biology: signal processing for cancer research. (United States)

    Yli-Harja, Olli; Ylipää, Antti; Nykter, Matti; Zhang, Wei


    In this editorial we introduce the research paradigms of signal processing in the era of systems biology. Signal processing is a field of science traditionally focused on modeling electronic and communications systems, but recently it has turned to biological applications with astounding results. The essence of signal processing is to describe the natural world by mathematical models and then, based on these models, develop efficient computational tools for solving engineering problems. Here, we underline, with examples, the endless possibilities which arise when the battle-hardened tools of engineering are applied to solve the problems that have tormented cancer researchers. Based on this approach, a new field has emerged, called cancer systems biology. Despite its short history, cancer systems biology has already produced several success stories tackling previously impracticable problems. Perhaps most importantly, it has been accepted as an integral part of the major endeavors of cancer research, such as analyzing the genomic and epigenomic data produced by The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) project. Finally, we show that signal processing and cancer research, two fields that are seemingly distant from each other, have merged into a field that is indeed more than the sum of its parts.

  20. Integrating Biological Systems in the Process Dynamics and Control Curriculum (United States)

    Parker, Robert S.; Doyle, Francis J.; Henson, Michael A.


    The evolution of the chemical engineering discipline motivates a re-evaluation of the process dynamics and control curriculum. A key requirement of future courses will be the introduction of theoretical concepts and application examples relevant to emerging areas, notably complex biological systems. We outline the critical concepts required to…


    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)


    Disclosed is a system comprising: - a reconfigurable hardware platform; - a plurality of hardware units defined as cells adapted to be programmed to provide self-organization and self-maintenance of the system by means of implementing a program expressed in a programming language defined as DNA...... language, where each cell is adapted to communicate with one or more other cells in the system, and where the system further comprises a converter program adapted to convert keywords from the DNA language to a binary DNA code; where the self-organisation comprises that the DNA code is transmitted to one...... or more of the cells, and each of the one or more cells is adapted to determine its function in the system; where if a fault occurs in a first cell and the first cell ceases to perform its function, self-maintenance is performed by that the system transmits information to the cells that the first cell has...

  2. Biologically Inspired Artificial Haircell Sensors (United States)


    degree at the University of Illinois. James A. Liburdy, J.R. Welty Professor of Mechanical engineering, Oregon State University Daniel R. Morse...patent disclosure None. Honors/Awards James A. Liburdy, promoted to J.R. Welty Professor of Mechanical engineering, Oregon State University

  3. Biologically inspired intelligent decision making (United States)

    Manning, Timmy; Sleator, Roy D; Walsh, Paul


    Artificial neural networks (ANNs) are a class of powerful machine learning models for classification and function approximation which have analogs in nature. An ANN learns to map stimuli to responses through repeated evaluation of exemplars of the mapping. This learning approach results in networks which are recognized for their noise tolerance and ability to generalize meaningful responses for novel stimuli. It is these properties of ANNs which make them appealing for applications to bioinformatics problems where interpretation of data may not always be obvious, and where the domain knowledge required for deductive techniques is incomplete or can cause a combinatorial explosion of rules. In this paper, we provide an introduction to artificial neural network theory and review some interesting recent applications to bioinformatics problems. PMID:24335433

  4. A Friendly-Biological Reactor SIMulator (BioReSIM for studying biological processes in wastewater treatment processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raul Molina


    Full Text Available Biological processes for wastewater treatments are inherently dynamic systems because of the large variations in the influent wastewater flow rate, concentration composition and the adaptive behavior of the involved microorganisms. Moreover, the sludge retention time (SRT is a critical factor to understand the bioreactor performances when changes in the influent or in the operation conditions take place. Since SRT are usually in the range of 10-30 days, the performance of biological reactors needs a long time to be monitored in a regular laboratory demonstration, limiting the knowledge that can be obtained in the experimental lab practice. In order to overcome this lack, mathematical models and computer simulations are useful tools to describe biochemical processes and predict the overall performance of bioreactors under different working operation conditions and variations of the inlet wastewater composition. The mathematical solution of the model could be difficult as numerous biochemical processes can be considered. Additionally, biological reactors description (mass balance, etc. needs models represented by partial or/and ordinary differential equations associated to algebraic expressions, that require complex computational codes to obtain the numerical solutions. Different kind of software for mathematical modeling can be used, from large degree of freedom simulators capable of free models definition (as AQUASIM, to closed predefined model structure programs (as BIOWIN. The first ones usually require long learning curves, whereas the second ones could be excessively rigid for specific wastewater treatment systems. As alternative, we present Biological Reactor SIMulator (BioReSIM, a MATLAB code for the simulation of sequencing batch reactors (SBR and rotating biological contactors (RBC as biological systems of suspended and attached biomass for wastewater treatment, respectively. This BioReSIM allows the evaluation of simple and complex

  5. 基于生物刺激神经网络的多机器人编队方法%Multi-robot formation based on biological inspired neural network

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    仰晓芳; 倪建军


    Multi-robot formation control is an important issue in the multi-robot cooperation field. It is a hot and difficult problem to achieve multi-robot dynamic formation while making them move toward the same target. Concerning this problem, a new biological inspired neural network based approach for multi-robot formation was proposed in this paper. In the proposed approach, a leader-referenced formation model was used to calculate the virtual target location for each robot in real-time, and a biological neural network was used to realize multi-robot navigation. Finally, some simulation experiments were carried out. The experimental results show that the proposed approach has some good performances, such as the real-time obstacle avoidance, keeping formation and moving toward the same target. Furthermore, multi-robots can change the formation quickly, which proves the real-time and intelligence of the proposed approach.%多机器人编队控制是多机器人协作领域的重要研究内容之一,如何实现多机器人朝同一目标移动的同时保持队形是多机器人编队的一个热点和难点问题.针对这一问题,提出一种新的基于生物刺激神经网络的多机器人动态编队方法,采用基于leader-referenced编队模型实时计算各机器人的虚拟目标位置,利用生物刺激神经网络进行机器人导航.最后进行仿真实验,实验结果表明该方法在实现多机器人实时避障并保持队形的同时,朝同一目标移动,而且可以很快实现队形变换,具有较好的实时性和灵活性.

  6. Benchmarking Combined Biological Phosphorus and Nitrogen Removal Wastewater Treatment Processes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gernaey, Krist; Jørgensen, Sten Bay


    This paper describes the implementation of a simulation benchmark for studying the influence of control strategy implementations on combined nitrogen and phosphorus removal processes in a biological wastewater treatment plant. The presented simulation benchmark plant and its performance criteria...... are to a large extent based on the already existing nitrogen removal simulation benchmark. The paper illustrates and motivates the selection of the treatment plant lay-out, the selection of the biological process model, the development of realistic influent disturbance scenarios for dry, rain and storm weather...... conditions respectively, the definition of performance indexes that include the phosphorus removal processes, and the selection of a suitable operating point for the plant. Two control loops were implemented: one for dissolved oxygen control using the oxygen transfer coefficient K(L)a as manipulated variable...

  7. Assessment of biological Hydrogen production processes: A review (United States)

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


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

  8. Classical and spatial stochastic processes with applications to biology

    CERN Document Server

    Schinazi, Rinaldo B


    The revised and expanded edition of this textbook presents the concepts and applications of random processes with the same illuminating simplicity as its first edition, but with the notable addition of substantial modern material on biological modeling. While still treating many important problems in fields such as engineering and mathematical physics, the book also focuses on the highly relevant topics of cancerous mutations, influenza evolution, drug resistance, and immune response. The models used elegantly apply various classical stochastic models presented earlier in the text, and exercises are included throughout to reinforce essential concepts. The second edition of Classical and Spatial Stochastic Processes is suitable as a textbook for courses in stochastic processes at the advanced-undergraduate and graduate levels, or as a self-study resource for researchers and practitioners in mathematics, engineering, physics, and mathematical biology. Reviews of the first edition: An appetizing textbook for a f...

  9. Biological Signal Processing with a Genetic Toggle Switch (United States)

    Hillenbrand, Patrick; Fritz, Georg; Gerland, Ulrich


    Complex gene regulation requires responses that depend not only on the current levels of input signals but also on signals received in the past. In digital electronics, logic circuits with this property are referred to as sequential logic, in contrast to the simpler combinatorial logic without such internal memory. In molecular biology, memory is implemented in various forms such as biochemical modification of proteins or multistable gene circuits, but the design of the regulatory interface, which processes the input signals and the memory content, is often not well understood. Here, we explore design constraints for such regulatory interfaces using coarse-grained nonlinear models and stochastic simulations of detailed biochemical reaction networks. We test different designs for biological analogs of the most versatile memory element in digital electronics, the JK-latch. Our analysis shows that simple protein-protein interactions and protein-DNA binding are sufficient, in principle, to implement genetic circuits with the capabilities of a JK-latch. However, it also exposes fundamental limitations to its reliability, due to the fact that biological signal processing is asynchronous, in contrast to most digital electronics systems that feature a central clock to orchestrate the timing of all operations. We describe a seemingly natural way to improve the reliability by invoking the master-slave concept from digital electronics design. This concept could be useful to interpret the design of natural regulatory circuits, and for the design of synthetic biological systems. PMID:23874595

  10. 100 years after Smoluchowski: stochastic processes in cell biology (United States)

    Holcman, D.; Schuss, Z.


    100 years after Smoluchowski introduced his approach to stochastic processes, they are now at the basis of mathematical and physical modeling in cellular biology: they are used for example to analyse and to extract features from a large number (tens of thousands) of single molecular trajectories or to study the diffusive motion of molecules, proteins or receptors. Stochastic modeling is a new step in large data analysis that serves extracting cell biology concepts. We review here Smoluchowski’s approach to stochastic processes and provide several applications for coarse-graining diffusion, studying polymer models for understanding nuclear organization and finally, we discuss the stochastic jump dynamics of telomeres across cell division and stochastic gene regulation.

  11. A bio-inspired approach for in situ synthesis of tunable adhesive. (United States)

    Sun, Leming; Yi, Sijia; Wang, Yongzhong; Pan, Kang; Zhong, Qixin; Zhang, Mingjun


    Inspired by the strong adhesive produced by English ivy, this paper proposes an in situ synthesis approach for fabricating tunable nanoparticle enhanced adhesives. Special attention was given to tunable features of the adhesive produced by the biological process. Parameters that may be used to tune properties of the adhesive will be proposed. To illustrate and validate the proposed approach, an experimental platform was presented for fabricating tunable chitosan adhesive enhanced by Au nanoparticles synthesized in situ. This study contributes to a bio-inspired approach for in situ synthesis of tunable nanocomposite adhesives by mimicking the natural biological processes of ivy adhesive synthesis.

  12. Speed of human biological form and motion processing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George Buzzell

    Full Text Available Recent work suggests that biological motion processing can begin within ~110 ms of stimulus onset, as indexed by the P1 component of the event-related potential (ERP. Here, we investigated whether modulation of the P1 component reflects configural processing alone, rather than the processing of both configuration and motion cues. A three-stimulus oddball task was employed to evaluate bottom-up processing of biological motion. Intact point-light walkers (PLWs or scrambled PLWs served as distractor stimuli, whereas point-light displays of tool motion served as standard and target stimuli. In a second experiment, the same design was used, but the dynamic stimuli were replaced with static point-light displays. The first experiment revealed that dynamic PLWs elicited a larger P1 as compared to scrambled PLWs. A similar P1 increase was also observed for static PLWs in the second experiment, indicating that these stimuli were more salient than static, scrambled PLWs. These findings suggest that the visual system can rapidly extract global form information from static PLWs and that the observed P1 effect for dynamic PLWs is not dependent on the presence of motion cues. Finally, we found that the N1 component was sensitive to dynamic, but not static, PLWs, suggesting that this component reflects the processing of both form and motion information. The sensitivity of P1 to static PLWs has implications for dynamic form models of biological motion processing that posit temporal integration of configural cues present in individual frames of PLW animations.

  13. Influence of different natural physical fields on biological processes (United States)

    Mashinsky, A. L.


    In space flight conditions gravity, magnetic, and electrical fields as well as ionizing radiation change both in size, and in direction. This causes disruptions in the conduct of some physical processes, chemical reactions, and metabolism in living organisms. In these conditions organisms of different phylogenetic level change their metabolic reactions undergo changes such as disturbances in ionic exchange both in lower and in higher plants, changes in cell morphology for example, gyrosity in Proteus ( Proteus vulgaris), spatial disorientation in coleoptiles of Wheat ( Triticum aestivum) and Pea ( Pisum sativum) seedlings, mutational changes in Crepis ( Crepis capillaris) and Arabidopsis ( Arabidopsis thaliana) seedling. It has been found that even in the absence of gravity, gravireceptors determining spatial orientation in higher plants under terrestrial conditions are formed in the course of ontogenesis. Under weightlessness this system does not function and spatial orientation is determined by the light flux gradient or by the action of some other factors. Peculiarities of the formation of the gravireceptor apparatus in higher plants, amphibians, fish, and birds under space flight conditions have been observed. It has been found that the system in which responses were accompanied by phase transition have proven to be gravity-sensitive under microgravity conditions. Such reactions include also the process of photosynthesis which is the main energy production process in plants. In view of the established effects of microgravity and different natural physical fields on biological processes, it has been shown that these processes change due to the absence of initially rigid determination. The established biological effect of physical fields influence on biological processes in organisms is the starting point for elucidating the role of gravity and evolutionary development of various organisms on Earth.

  14. Environment. Biological processing of wastes; Environnement. Traitement biologique des dechets

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gourdon, R. [Institut National des Sciences Appliquees, INSA, Lab. d' Analyse Environnementale des Procedes et des Systemes Industriels, 69 - Villeurbanne (France)


    The main principle of the biological processing is the utilization of microbial activities by a control stimulation in order to decrease the wastes harmful effects, or by an energetic valorization. This paper deals with the solid wastes or the sludges. After a short presentation of the concerned wastes, their metabolism and their consequences, the author details two treatments: the composting (aerobic) and the methanization (anaerobic). The last part is devoted to the alcoholic fermentation and the industrial wastes (non agricultural) processing. (A.L.B.)

  15. Synthetic membranes and membrane processes with counterparts in biological systems (United States)

    Matson, Stephen L.


    Conventional synthetic membranes, fashioned for the most part from rather unremarkable polymeric materials, are essentially passive structures that achieve various industrial and biomedical separations through simple and selective membrane permeation processes. Indeed, simplicity of membrane material, structure, and function has long been perceived as a virtue of membranes relative to other separation processes with which they compete. The passive membrane separation processes -- exemplified by micro- and ultrafiltration, dialysis, reverse osmosis, and gas permeation -- differ from one another primarily in terms of membrane morphology or structure (e.g., porous, gel-type, and nonporous) and the permeant transport mechanism and driving force (e.g., diffusion, convection, and 'solution/diffusion'). The passive membrane separation processes have in common the fact that interaction between permeant and membrane material is typically weak and physicochemical in nature; indeed, it is frequently an objective of membrane materials design to minimize interaction between permeant and membrane polymer, since such strategies can minimize membrane fouling. As a consequence, conventional membrane processes often provide only modest separation factors or permselectivities; that is, they are more useful in performing 'group separations' (i.e., the separation of different classes of material) than they are in fractionating species within a given class. It has long been recognized within the community of membrane technologists that biological membrane structures and their components are extraordinarily sophisticated and powerful as compared to their synthetic counterparts. Moreover, biomembranes and related biological systems have been 'designed' according to a very different paradigm -- one that frequently maximizes and capitalizes on extraordinarily strong and biochemically specific interactions between components of the membrane and species interacting with them. Thus, in recent

  16. eDNA: A Bio-Inspired Reconfigurable Hardware Cell Architecture Supporting Self-organisation and Self-healing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boesen, Michael Reibel; Madsen, Jan


    This paper presents the concept of a biological inspired reconfigurable hardware cell architecture which supports self-organisation and self-healing. Two fundamental processes in biology, namely fertilization-to-birth and cell self-healing have inspired the development of this cell architecture....... In biology as well as in our hardware cell architecture it is the DNA which enables these processes. We propose a platform based on the electronic DNA (eDNA) and show through simulation, its capabilities as a new generation of robust reconfigurable hardware platforms. We have created a Java based simulator...

  17. The Use of Microwave Incineration to Process Biological Wastes (United States)

    Sun, Sidney C.; Srinivasan, Venkatesh; Covington, Alan (Technical Monitor)


    The handling and disposal of solid waste matter that has biological or biohazardous components is a difficult issue for hospitals, research laboratories, and industry. NASA faces the same challenge as it is developing regenerative systems that will process waste materials into materials that can be used to sustain humans living in space for extended durations. Plants provide critical functions in such a regenerative life support scheme in that they photosynthesize carbon dioxide and water into glucose and oxygen. The edible portions of the plant provide a food source for the crew. Inedible portions can be processed into materials that are more recyclable. The Advanced Life Support Division at NASA Ames Research Center has been evaluating a microwave incinerator that will oxidize inedible plant matter into carbon dioxide and water. The commercially available microwave incinerator is produced by Matsushita Electronic Instruments Corporation of Japan. Microwave incineration is a technology that is simple, safe, and compact enough for home use. It also has potential applications for institutions that produce biological or biohazardous waste. The incinerator produces a sterile ash that has only 13% of the mass of the original waste. The authors have run several sets of tests with the incinerator to establish its viability in processing biological material. One goal of the tests is to show that the incinerator does not generate toxic compounds as a byproduct of the combustion process. This paper will describe the results of the tests, including analyses of the resulting ash and exhaust gases. The significance of the results and their implications on commercial applications of the technology will also be discussed.

  18. Continuous downstream processing for high value biological products: A Review. (United States)

    Zydney, Andrew L


    There is growing interest in the possibility of developing truly continuous processes for the large-scale production of high value biological products. Continuous processing has the potential to provide significant reductions in cost and facility size while improving product quality and facilitating the design of flexible multi-product manufacturing facilities. This paper reviews the current state-of-the-art in separations technology suitable for continuous downstream bioprocessing, focusing on unit operations that would be most appropriate for the production of secreted proteins like monoclonal antibodies. This includes cell separation/recycle from the perfusion bioreactor, initial product recovery (capture), product purification (polishing), and formulation. Of particular importance are the available options, and alternatives, for continuous chromatographic separations. Although there are still significant challenges in developing integrated continuous bioprocesses, recent technological advances have provided process developers with a number of attractive options for development of truly continuous bioprocessing operations.

  19. Stochasticity in processes fundamentals and applications to chemistry and biology

    CERN Document Server

    Schuster, Peter


    This book has developed over the past fifteen years from a modern course on stochastic chemical kinetics for graduate students in physics, chemistry and biology. The first part presents a systematic collection of the mathematical background material needed to understand probability, statistics, and stochastic processes as a prerequisite for the increasingly challenging practical applications in chemistry and the life sciences examined in the second part. Recent advances in the development of new techniques and in the resolution of conventional experiments at nano-scales have been tremendous: today molecular spectroscopy can provide insights into processes down to scales at which current theories at the interface of physics, chemistry and the life sciences cannot be successful without a firm grasp of randomness and its sources. Routinely measured data is now sufficiently accurate to allow the direct recording of fluctuations. As a result, the sampling of data and the modeling of relevant processes are doomed t...

  20. Process for the biological purification of waste water

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)


    Process for the biological purification of waste water by the activated sludge method, the waste water being mixed with recirculated sludge and being subjected to an anaerobic treatment, before the waste water thus treated is alternately subjected to anoxic and aerobic treatments and the waste...... water thus treated is led into a clarification zone for settling sludge, which sludge is recirculated in order to be mixed with the crude waste water. As a result, a simultaneous reduction of the content both of nitrogen and phosphorus of the waste water is achieved....

  1. Bio-inspired dynamic robots (United States)

    Rudolph, Alan S.; Wax, Steven G.; Christodoulou, Leo


    The unique performance of biological systems across a wide spectrum of phylogenetic species has historically provided inspirations for roboticists in new designs and fabrication of new robotic platforms. Of particular interest to a number of important applications is to create dynamic robots able to adapt to a change in their world, unplanned events that are sometimes unexpected, and sometimes unstable, harsh conditions. It is likely that the exploring dynamics in biological systems will continue to provide rich solutions to attaining robots capable of more complex tasks for this purpose. This is because the long-term design process of evolution utilizes a natural selection process that responds to such changes. Recently, there have been significant advances across a number of interdisciplinary efforts that have generated new capabilities in biorobotics. Whole body dynamics that capture the force dynamics and functional stability of legged systems over rough terrain have been elucidated and applied in legged robotic systems. Exploying the force dynamics of flapping winged insect flight has provided key discoveries and enabled the fabrication of new micro air vehicles. New classes of materials are being developed that emulate the ability of natural muscle, capturing the compliant and soft subtle movement and performance of biological appendages. In addition, classes of new multifunctional materials are being developed to enable the design of biorobotics with the structural and functional efficiency of living organisms. Optical flow and other sensors based on the principles of invertebrate vision have been implemented on robotic platforms for autonomous robotic guidance and control. These fundamental advances have resulted in the emergence of a new generation of bioinspired dynamic robots which show significant performance improvements in early prototype testing and that could someday be useful in a number of significant applications such as search and rescue and

  2. Process-based design of dynamical biological systems (United States)

    Tanevski, Jovan; Todorovski, Ljupčo; Džeroski, Sašo


    The computational design of dynamical systems is an important emerging task in synthetic biology. Given desired properties of the behaviour of a dynamical system, the task of design is to build an in-silico model of a system whose simulated be- haviour meets these properties. We introduce a new, process-based, design methodology for addressing this task. The new methodology combines a flexible process-based formalism for specifying the space of candidate designs with multi-objective optimization approaches for selecting the most appropriate among these candidates. We demonstrate that the methodology is general enough to both formulate and solve tasks of designing deterministic and stochastic systems, successfully reproducing plausible designs reported in previous studies and proposing new designs that meet the design criteria, but have not been previously considered.

  3. Adoption: biological and social processes linked to adaptation. (United States)

    Grotevant, Harold D; McDermott, Jennifer M


    Children join adoptive families through domestic adoption from the public child welfare system, infant adoption through private agencies, and international adoption. Each pathway presents distinctive developmental opportunities and challenges. Adopted children are at higher risk than the general population for problems with adaptation, especially externalizing, internalizing, and attention problems. This review moves beyond the field's emphasis on adoptee-nonadoptee differences to highlight biological and social processes that affect adaptation of adoptees across time. The experience of stress, whether prenatal, postnatal/preadoption, or during the adoption transition, can have significant impacts on the developing neuroendocrine system. These effects can contribute to problems with physical growth, brain development, and sleep, activating cascading effects on social, emotional, and cognitive development. Family processes involving contact between adoptive and birth family members, co-parenting in gay and lesbian adoptive families, and racial socialization in transracially adoptive families affect social development of adopted children into adulthood.

  4. Quantum Processes and Dynamic Networks in Physical and Biological Systems. (United States)

    Dudziak, Martin Joseph

    Quantum theory since its earliest formulations in the Copenhagen Interpretation has been difficult to integrate with general relativity and with classical Newtonian physics. There has been traditionally a regard for quantum phenomena as being a limiting case for a natural order that is fundamentally classical except for microscopic extrema where quantum mechanics must be applied, more as a mathematical reconciliation rather than as a description and explanation. Macroscopic sciences including the study of biological neural networks, cellular energy transports and the broad field of non-linear and chaotic systems point to a quantum dimension extending across all scales of measurement and encompassing all of Nature as a fundamentally quantum universe. Theory and observation lead to a number of hypotheses all of which point to dynamic, evolving networks of fundamental or elementary processes as the underlying logico-physical structure (manifestation) in Nature and a strongly quantized dimension to macroscalar processes such as are found in biological, ecological and social systems. The fundamental thesis advanced and presented herein is that quantum phenomena may be the direct consequence of a universe built not from objects and substance but from interacting, interdependent processes collectively operating as sets and networks, giving rise to systems that on microcosmic or macroscopic scales function wholistically and organically, exhibiting non-locality and other non -classical phenomena. The argument is made that such effects as non-locality are not aberrations or departures from the norm but ordinary consequences of the process-network dynamics of Nature. Quantum processes are taken to be the fundamental action-events within Nature; rather than being the exception quantum theory is the rule. The argument is also presented that the study of quantum physics could benefit from the study of selective higher-scale complex systems, such as neural processes in the brain

  5. Microbiology and atmospheric processes: chemical interactions of Primary Biological Aerosols (United States)

    Deguillaume, L.; Leriche, M.; Amato, P.; Ariya, P. A.; Delort, A.-M.; Pöschl, U.; Chaumerliac, N.; Bauer, H.; Flossmann, A. I.; Morris, C. E.


    This paper discusses the influence of bioaerosols on atmospheric chemistry and vice versa through microbiological and chemical properties and processes. Several studies have shown that biological matter represents a significant fraction of air particulate matter and hence affects the microstructure and water uptake of aerosol particles. Moreover, airborne micro-organisms can transform chemical constituents of the atmosphere by metabolic activity. Recent studies have emphasized the viability of bacteria and metabolic degradation of organic substances in cloud water. On the other hand, the viability and metabolic activity of airborne micro-organisms depend strongly on physical and chemical atmospheric parameters such as temperature, pressure, radiation, pH value and nutrient concentrations. In spite of recent advances, however, our knowledge of the microbiological and chemical interactions of primary biological particles in the atmosphere is rather limited. Further targeted investigations combining laboratory experiments, field measurements, and modelling studies will be required to characterize the chemical feedbacks, microbiological activities at the air/snow/water interface supplied to the atmosphere.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Artur Mielcarek


    Full Text Available The aim of the study was to determine the degree of an organic substrate consumption in the denitrification process involving a biofilm in four-stages laboratory scale rotating biological contactor (RBC. The discs submergence was 40% of their diameter. Acetic acid, used as external carbon source, was fed to the fourth stage of RBC. Consumption of substrate was observed for 2 and 24 hours. For a shorter period there was the removal of 37.9 ± 1.8 mg N·m-2, while using 499,9 ± 33.2 mg O2·m-2 of organic compounds. The prolongation of the experiment duration guaranteed higher efficiency of denitrification. The ratio of organic substrate used to the amount of nitrogen removed was 13: 1 and 21: 1 for 2 and 24 hours respectively.

  7. Implied Movement in Static Images Reveals Biological Timing Processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Carlos Nather


    Full Text Available Visual perception is adapted toward a better understanding of our own movements than those of non-conspecifics. The present study determined whether time perception is affected by pictures of different species by considering the evolutionary scale. Static (“S” and implied movement (“M” images of a dog, cheetah, chimpanzee, and man were presented to undergraduate students. S and M images of the same species were presented in random order or one after the other (S-M or M-S for two groups of participants. Movement, Velocity, and Arousal semantic scales were used to characterize some properties of the images. Implied movement affected time perception, in which M images were overestimated. The results are discussed in terms of visual motion perception related to biological timing processing that could be established early in terms of the adaptation of humankind to the environment.

  8. Monitoring Biological Modes in a Bioreactor Process by Computer Simulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samia Semcheddine


    Full Text Available This paper deals with the general framework of fermentation system modeling and monitoring, focusing on the fermentation of Escherichia coli. Our main objective is to develop an algorithm for the online detection of acetate production during the culture of recombinant proteins. The analysis the fermentation process shows that it behaves like a hybrid dynamic system with commutation (since it can be represented by 5 nonlinear models. We present a strategy of fault detection based on residual generation for detecting the different actual biological modes. The residual generation is based on nonlinear analytical redundancy relations. The simulation results show that the several modes that are occulted during the bacteria cultivation can be detected by residuals using a nonlinear dynamic model and a reduced instrumentation.

  9. [Biological Process Oriented Online Fourier Transform Infrared Spectrometer]. (United States)

    Xie, Fei; Wu, Qiong-shui; Zeng, Li-bo


    An online Fourier Transform Infrared Spectrometer and an ATR (Attenuated Total Reflection) probe, specifically at the application of real time measurement of the reaction substrate concentration in biological processes, were designed. (1) The spectrometer combined the theories of double cube-corner reflectors and flat mirror, which created a kind of high performance interferometer system. The light path folding way was utilized to makes the interferometer compact structure. Adopting double cube-corner reflectors, greatly reduces the influence of factors in the process of moving mirror movement such as rotation, tilt, etc. The parallelogram oscillation flexible support device was utilized to support the moving mirror moves. It cancelled the friction and vibration during mirror moving, and ensures the smooth operation. The ZnSe splitter significantly improved the hardware reliability in high moisture environment. The method of 60° entrance to light splitter improves the luminous flux. (2) An ATR in situ measuring probe with simple structure, large-flux, economical and practical character was designed in this article. The transmission of incident light and the light output utilized the infrared pipe with large diameter and innerplanted-high plating membrane, which conducted for the infrared transmission media of ATR probe. It greatly reduced the energy loss of infrared light after multiple reflection on the inner wall of the light pipe. Therefore, the ATR probe obtained high flux, improved the signal strength, which make the signal detected easily. Finally, the high sensitivity of MCT (Mercury Cadmium Telluride) detector was utilized to realize infrared interference signal collection, and improved the data quality of detection. The test results showed that the system yields the advantages of perfect moisture-proof performance, luminous flux, online measurement, etc. The designed online Fourier infrared spectrometer can real-time measured common reactant substrates

  10. Learning from nature: Nature-inspired algorithms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Albeanu, Grigore; Madsen, Henrik; Popentiu-Vladicescu, Florin


    During last decade, the nature has inspired researchers to develop new algorithms. The largest collection of nature-inspired algorithms is biology-inspired: swarm intelligence (particle swarm optimization, ant colony optimization, cuckoo search, bees' algorithm, bat algorithm, firefly algorithm etc...... on collective social behaviour of organisms, researchers have developed optimization strategies taking into account not only the individuals, but also groups and environment. However, learning from nature, new classes of approaches can be identified, tested and compared against already available algorithms....... This work reviews the most effective nature-inspired algorithms and describes learning strategies based on nature oriented thinking. Examples and the benefits obtained from applying nature-inspired strategies in test generation, learners group optimization, and artificial immune systems for learning...

  11. Physicists Get INSPIREd: INSPIRE Project and Grid Applications (United States)

    Klem, Jukka; Iwaszkiewicz, Jan


    INSPIRE is the new high-energy physics scientific information system developed by CERN, DESY, Fermilab and SLAC. INSPIRE combines the curated and trusted contents of SPIRES database with Invenio digital library technology. INSPIRE contains the entire HEP literature with about one million records and in addition to becoming the reference HEP scientific information platform, it aims to provide new kinds of data mining services and metrics to assess the impact of articles and authors. Grid and cloud computing provide new opportunities to offer better services in areas that require large CPU and storage resources including document Optical Character Recognition (OCR) processing, full-text indexing of articles and improved metrics. D4Science-II is a European project that develops and operates an e-Infrastructure supporting Virtual Research Environments (VREs). It develops an enabling technology (gCube) which implements a mechanism for facilitating the interoperation of its e-Infrastructure with other autonomously running data e-Infrastructures. As a result, this creates the core of an e-Infrastructure ecosystem. INSPIRE is one of the e-Infrastructures participating in D4Science-II project. In the context of the D4Science-II project, the INSPIRE e-Infrastructure makes available some of its resources and services to other members of the resulting ecosystem. Moreover, it benefits from the ecosystem via a dedicated Virtual Organization giving access to an array of resources ranging from computing and storage resources of grid infrastructures to data and services.

  12. Improving the reviewing process in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grossman, G. D.


    Full Text Available I discuss current issues in reviewing and editorial practices in ecology and evolutionary biology and suggest possible solutions for current problems. The reviewing crisis is unlikely to change unless steps are taken by journals to provide greater inclusiveness and incentives to reviewers. In addition, both journals and institutions should reduce their emphasis on publication numbers (least publishable units and impact factors and focus instead on article synthesis and quality which will require longer publications. Academic and research institutions should consider reviewing manuscripts and editorial positions an important part of a researcher’s professional activities and reward them accordingly. Rewarding reviewers either monetarily or via other incentives such as free journal subscriptions may encourage participation in the reviewing process for both profit and non–profit journals. Reviewer performance will likely be improved by measures that increase inclusiveness, such as sending reviews and decision letters to reviewers. Journals may be able to evaluate the efficacy of their reviewing process by comparing citations of rejected but subsequently published papers with those published within the journal at similar times. Finally, constructive reviews: 1 identify important shortcomings and suggest solutions when possible, 2 distinguish trivial from non–trivial problems, and 3 include editor’s evaluations of the reviews including identification of trivial versus substantive comments (i.e., those that must be addressed.

  13. Exploiting graphics processing units for computational biology and bioinformatics. (United States)

    Payne, Joshua L; Sinnott-Armstrong, Nicholas A; Moore, Jason H


    Advances in the video gaming industry have led to the production of low-cost, high-performance graphics processing units (GPUs) that possess more memory bandwidth and computational capability than central processing units (CPUs), the standard workhorses of scientific computing. With the recent release of generalpurpose GPUs and NVIDIA's GPU programming language, CUDA, graphics engines are being adopted widely in scientific computing applications, particularly in the fields of computational biology and bioinformatics. The goal of this article is to concisely present an introduction to GPU hardware and programming, aimed at the computational biologist or bioinformaticist. To this end, we discuss the primary differences between GPU and CPU architecture, introduce the basics of the CUDA programming language, and discuss important CUDA programming practices, such as the proper use of coalesced reads, data types, and memory hierarchies. We highlight each of these topics in the context of computing the all-pairs distance between instances in a dataset, a common procedure in numerous disciplines of scientific computing. We conclude with a runtime analysis of the GPU and CPU implementations of the all-pairs distance calculation. We show our final GPU implementation to outperform the CPU implementation by a factor of 1700.

  14. The method validation step of biological dosimetry accreditation process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Roy, L.; Voisin, P.A.; Guillou, A.C.; Busset, A.; Gregoire, E.; Buard, V.; Delbos, M.; Voisin, Ph. [Institut de Radioprotection et de Surete Nucleaire, LDB, 92 - Fontenay aux Roses (France)


    One of the missions of the Laboratory of Biological Dosimetry (L.D.B.) of the Institute for Radiation and Nuclear Safety (I.R.S.N.) is to assess the radiological dose after an accidental overexposure suspicion to ionising radiation, by using radio-induced changes of some biological parameters. The 'gold standard' is the yield of dicentrics observed in patients lymphocytes, and this yield is converted in dose using dose effect relationships. This method is complementary to clinical and physical dosimetry, for medical team in charge of the patients. To obtain a formal recognition of its operational activity, the laboratory decided three years ago, to require an accreditation, by following the recommendations of both 17025 General Requirements for the Competence of Testing and Calibration Laboratories and 19238 Performance criteria for service laboratories performing biological dosimetry by cyto-genetics. Diagnostics, risks analysis were realized to control the whole analysis process leading to documents writing. Purchases, personnel department, vocational training were also included in the quality system. Audits were very helpful to improve the quality system. One specificity of this technique is that it is not normalized therefore apart from quality management aspects, several technical points needed some validations. An inventory of potentially influent factors was carried out. To estimate their real effect on the yield of dicentrics, a Placket-Burman experimental design was conducted. The effect of seven parameters was tested: the BUdr (bromodeoxyuridine), PHA (phytohemagglutinin) and colcemid concentration, the culture duration, the incubator temperature, the blood volume and the medium volume. The chosen values were calculated according to the uncertainties on the way they were measured i.e. pipettes, thermometers, test tubes. None of the factors has a significant impact on the yield of dicentrics. Therefore the uncertainty linked to their use was

  15. Pyrroloquinoline-quinone and its versatile roles in biological processes

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    H S Misra; Y S Rajpurohit; N P Khairnar


    Pyrroloquinoline-quinine (PQQ) was initially characterized as a redox cofactor for membrane-bound dehydrogenases in the bacterial system. Subsequently, PQQ was shown to be an antioxidant protecting the living cells from oxidative damage in vivo and the biomolecules from artificially produced reaction oxygen species in vitro. The presence of PQQ has been documented from different biological samples. It functions as a nutrient and vitamin for supporting the growth and protection of living cells under stress. Recently, the role of PQQ has also been shown as a bio-control agent for plant fungal pathogens, an inducer for proteins kinases involved in cellular differentiation of mammalian cells and as a redox sensor leading to development of biosensor. Recent reviews published on PQQ and enzymes requiring this cofactor have brought forth the case specific roles of PQQ. This review covers the comprehensive information on various aspects of PQQ known till date. These include the roles of PQQ in the regulation of cellular growth and differentiation in mammalian system, as a nutrient and vitamin in stress tolerance, in crop productivity through increasing the availability of insoluble phosphate and as a bio-control agent, and as a redox agent leading to the biosensor development. Most recent findings correlating the exceptionally high redox recycling ability of PQQ to its potential as anti-neurodegenerative, anticancer and pharmacological agents, and as a signalling molecule have been distinctly brought out. This review discusses different findings suggesting the versatility in PQQ functions and provides the most plausible intellectual basis to the ubiquitous roles of this compound in a large number of biological processes, as a nutrient and a perspective vitamin.

  16. Geophysics in INSPIRE (United States)

    Sőrés, László


    INSPIRE is a European directive to harmonize spatial data in Europe. Its' aim is to establish a transparent, multidisciplinary network of environmental information by using international standards and OGC web services. Spatial data themes defined in the annex of the directive cover 34 domains that are closely bundled to environment and spatial information. According to the INSPIRE roadmap all data providers must setup discovery, viewing and download services and restructure data stores to provide spatial data as defined by the underlying specifications by 2014 December 1. More than 3000 institutions are going to be involved in the progress. During the data specification process geophysics as an inevitable source of geo information was introduced to Annex II Geology. Within the Geology theme Geophysics is divided into core and extended model. The core model contains specifications for legally binding data provisioning and is going to be part of the Implementation Rules of the INSPIRE directives. To minimize the work load of obligatory data transformations the scope of the core model is very limited and simple. It covers the most essential geophysical feature types that are relevant in economic and environmental context. To fully support the use cases identified by the stake holders the extended model was developed. It contains a wide range of spatial object types for geophysical measurements, processed and interpreted results, and wrapper classes to help data providers in using the Observation and Measurements (O&M) standard for geophysical data exchange. Instead of introducing the traditional concept of "geophysical methods" at a high structural level the data model classifies measurements and geophysical models based on their spatial characteristics. Measurements are classified as geophysical station (point), geophysical profile (curve) and geophysical swath (surface). Generic classes for processing results and interpretation models are curve model (1D), surface

  17. Biological Inspired Stochastic Optimization Technique (PSO for DOA and Amplitude Estimation of Antenna Arrays Signal Processing in RADAR Communication System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khurram Hammed


    Full Text Available This paper presents a stochastic global optimization technique known as Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO for joint estimation of amplitude and direction of arrival of the targets in RADAR communication system. The proposed scheme is an excellent optimization methodology and a promising approach for solving the DOA problems in communication systems. Moreover, PSO is quite suitable for real time scenario and easy to implement in hardware. In this study, uniform linear array is used and targets are supposed to be in far field of the arrays. Formulation of the fitness function is based on mean square error and this function requires a single snapshot to obtain the best possible solution. To check the accuracy of the algorithm, all of the results are taken by varying the number of antenna elements and targets. Finally, these results are compared with existing heuristic techniques to show the accuracy of PSO.

  18. Bio-inspired nano-sensor-enhanced CNN visual computer. (United States)

    Porod, Wolfgang; Werblin, Frank; Chua, Leon O; Roska, Tamas; Rodriguez-Vazquez, Angel; Roska, Botond; Fay, Patrick; Bernstein, Gary H; Huang, Yih-Fang; Csurgay, Arpad I


    Nanotechnology opens new ways to utilize recent discoveries in biological image processing by translating the underlying functional concepts into the design of CNN (cellular neural/nonlinear network)-based systems incorporating nanoelectronic devices. There is a natural intersection joining studies of retinal processing, spatio-temporal nonlinear dynamics embodied in CNN, and the possibility of miniaturizing the technology through nanotechnology. This intersection serves as the springboard for our multidisciplinary project. Biological feature and motion detectors map directly into the spatio-temporal dynamics of CNN for target recognition, image stabilization, and tracking. The neural interactions underlying color processing will drive the development of nanoscale multispectral sensor arrays for image fusion. Implementing such nanoscale sensors on a CNN platform will allow the implementation of device feedback control, a hallmark of biological sensory systems. These biologically inspired CNN subroutines are incorporated into the new world of analog-and-logic algorithms and software, containing also many other active-wave computing mechanisms, including nature-inspired (physics and chemistry) as well as PDE-based sophisticated spatio-temporal algorithms. Our goal is to design and develop several miniature prototype devices for target detection, navigation, tracking, and robotics. This paper presents an example illustrating the synergies emerging from the convergence of nanotechnology, biotechnology, and information and cognitive science.

  19. Optimization of electrocoagulation process to treat biologically pretreated bagasse effluent

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thirugnanasambandham K.


    Full Text Available The main objective of the present study was to investigate the efficiency of electrocoagulation process as a post-treatment to treat biologically pretreated bagasse effluent using iron electrodes. The removal of chemical oxygen demand (COD and total suspended solids (TSS were studied under different operating conditions such as amount of dilution, initial pH, applied current and electrolyte dose by using response surface methodology (RSM coupled with four-factor three-level Box-Behnken experimental design (BBD. The experimental results were analyzed by Pareto analysis of variance (ANOVA and second order polynomial mathematical models were developed with high correlation of efficiency (R2 for COD, TSS removal and electrical energy consumption (EEC. The individual and combined effect of variables on responses was studied using three dimensional response surface plots. Under the optimum operating conditions, such as amount of dilution at 30 %, initial pH of 6.5, applied current of 8 mA cm-2 and electrolyte dose of 740 mg l-1 shows the higher removal efficiency of COD (98 % and TSS (93 % with EEC of 2.40 Wh, which were confirmed by validation experiments.

  20. Microbiology and atmospheric processes: chemical interactions of primary biological aerosols

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Deguillaume


    Full Text Available This paper discusses the influence of primary biological aerosols (PBA on atmospheric chemistry and vice versa through microbiological and chemical properties and processes. Several studies have shown that PBA represent a significant fraction of air particulate matter and hence affect the microstructure and water uptake of aerosol particles. Moreover, airborne micro-organisms, namely fungal spores and bacteria, can transform chemical constituents of the atmosphere by metabolic activity. Recent studies have emphasized the viability of bacteria and metabolic degradation of organic substances in cloud water. On the other hand, the viability and metabolic activity of airborne micro-organisms depend strongly on physical and chemical atmospheric parameters such as temperature, pressure, radiation, pH value and nutrient concentrations. In spite of recent advances, however, our knowledge of the microbiological and chemical interactions of PBA in the atmosphere is rather limited. Further targeted investigations combining laboratory experiments, field measurements, and modelling studies will be required to characterize the chemical feedbacks, microbiological activities at the air/snow/water interface supplied to the atmosphere.


    Anaerobic biological processes effectively reduce perchlorate to chloride. However, the effluent can be biologically unstable, high in particulates and high in disinfection by-product precursor compounds. Such an effluent would be unsuitable for transmission into a drinking water...

  2. Ecosystem Modeling of Biological Processes to Global Budgets (United States)

    Christopher, Potter S.; Condon, Estelle (Technical Monitor)


    biosphere effects on atmospheric composition is the ecosystem level. These assumptions are the foundation for developing modern emission budgets for biogenic gases such as carbon dioxide, methane, carbon monoxide, isoprene, nitrous and nitric oxide, and ammonia. Such emission budgets commonly include information on seasonal flux patterns, typical diurnal profiles, and spatial resolution of at least one degree latitude/longitude for the globe. On the basis of these budgets, it is possible to compute 'base emission rates' for the major biogenic trace gases from both terrestrial and ocean sources, which may be useful benchmarks for defining the gas production rates of organisms, especially those from early Earth history, which are required to generate a detectable signal on a global atmosphere. This type of analysis is also the starting point for evaluation of the 'biological processes to global gas budget' extrapolation procedure described above for early Earth ecosystems.

  3. Analysis of a growth model inspired by Gompertz and Korf laws, and an analogous birth-death process. (United States)

    Di Crescenzo, Antonio; Spina, Serena


    We propose a new deterministic growth model which captures certain features of both the Gompertz and Korf laws. We investigate its main properties, with special attention to the correction factor, the relative growth rate, the inflection point, the maximum specific growth rate, the lag time and the threshold crossing problem. Some data analytic examples and their performance are also considered. Furthermore, we study a stochastic counterpart of the proposed model, that is a linear time-inhomogeneous birth-death process whose mean behaves as the deterministic one. We obtain the transition probabilities, the moments and the population ultimate extinction probability for this process. We finally treat the special case of a simple birth process, which better mimics the proposed growth model.

  4. Photo-activated biological processes as quantum measurements

    CERN Document Server

    Imamoglu, Atac


    We outline a framework for describing photo-activated biological reactions as generalized quantum measurements of external fields, for which the biological system takes on the role of a quantum meter. By using general arguments regarding the Hamiltonian that describes the measurement interaction, we identify the cases where it is essential for a complex chemical or biological system to exhibit non-equilibrium quantum coherent dynamics in order to achieve the requisite functionality. We illustrate the analysis by considering measurement of the solar radiation field in photosynthesis and measurement of the earth's magnetic field in avian magnetoreception.

  5. Production of hydrogen using an anaerobic biological process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kramer, Robert; Pelter, Libbie S.; Patterson, John A.


    Various embodiments of the present invention pertain to methods for biological production of hydrogen. More specifically, embodiments of the present invention pertain to a modular energy system and related methods for producing hydrogen using organic waste as a feed stock.

  6. The Inspiration of Hope in Substance Abuse Counseling (United States)

    Koehn, Corinne; Cutcliffe, John R.


    This study used a grounded theory method to explore how counselors inspire hope in clients struggling with substance abuse. Findings from 10 participants revealed that hope inspiration occurred in 3 phases and consisted of several categories of hope-inspiring processes. Implications for counseling practice, counselor education, and research are…

  7. Carbonate Beaches: A Balance Between Biological and Physical Processes (United States)

    Nairn, R.; Risk, M.


    Carbonate beaches are a unique example of the interaction between biological processes, creating the sediments, and physical processes, moving and often removing the sediments. On the sediment supply side, carbonate sediments are born, not made. They exist in dynamic equilibrium between production and destruction. Following the creation of carbonate sediment in coral reef and lagoon environments, the sediments are moved shoreward to the beach, transport along the shore and sometimes, eventually lost offshore, often as the result of tropical storms. Comprehensive studies of the balance between the supply and loss of carbonate sediments and beach dynamics have been completed for the islands of Mauritius and Barbados. Field studies and remote sensing (Compact Airborne Spectrometry Imaging) have been applied to develop carbonate sediment production rates for a range of reef and lagoon conditions. Using GIS, these production rates have been integrated to determine sediment supply rates for different segments of the coastline. 1-D and 2-D models of waves, hydrodynamics, sediment transport and morphodynamics were set-up and tested against observed beach response to storm events or a sequence of storm events. These complex deterministic models are not suitable for application over periods of decades. However, it was possible to characterize storm events by the extent of sand loss, and relate this to key descriptive factors for groups of storm events, thereby encapsulating the erosion response. A long-term predictive tool for evaluating beach erosion and accretion response, over a period of several decades, was developed by combining the supply rates for carbonate sediment and the encapsulated representation of the loss rates through physical processes. The ability of this predictive tool was successfully tested against observed long term beach evolution along sections of the coast in Barbados and Mauritius using air photo analysis in GIS for shoreline change over periods

  8. Students' Ability to Solve Process-Diagram Problems in Secondary Biology Education (United States)

    Kragten, Marco; Admiraal, Wilfried; Rijlaarsdam, Gert


    Process diagrams are important tools in biology for explaining processes such as protein synthesis, compound cycles and the like. The aim of the present study was to measure the ability to solve process-diagram problems in biology and its relationship with prior knowledge, spatial ability and working memory. For this purpose, we developed a test…

  9. Students' Ability to Solve Process-Diagram Problems in Secondary Biology Education (United States)

    Kragten, Marco; Admiraal, Wilfried; Rijlaarsdam, Gert


    Process diagrams are important tools in biology for explaining processes such as protein synthesis, compound cycles and the like. The aim of the present study was to measure the ability to solve process-diagram problems in biology and its relationship with prior knowledge, spatial ability and working memory. For this purpose, we developed a test…

  10. Nature-inspired computing for control systems

    CERN Document Server


    The book presents recent advances in nature-inspired computing, giving a special emphasis to control systems applications. It reviews different techniques used for simulating physical, chemical, biological or social phenomena at the purpose of designing robust, predictive and adaptive control strategies. The book is a collection of several contributions, covering either more general approaches in control systems, or methodologies for control tuning and adaptive controllers, as well as exciting applications of nature-inspired techniques in robotics. On one side, the book is expected to motivate readers with a background in conventional control systems to try out these powerful techniques inspired by nature. On the other side, the book provides advanced readers with a deeper understanding of the field and a broad spectrum of different methods and techniques. All in all, the book is an outstanding, practice-oriented reference guide to nature-inspired computing addressing graduate students, researchers and practi...

  11. (HBCU) Development and Application of a Biologically Inspired Methodology for the Optimized, Multi-Disciplinary and Multi-Objective Design of Air Vehicles (United States)


    Approach to Modeling Morphogenesis Using Control Theory” Sao Paulo Journal of Mathematical Sciences (5) 281315. (b) N. Y. Kawabata , M.Sc., University of...Summer 2010, advisor: M.H. Kobayashi. Dissertation available from UHM library. 4. N. Y. Kawabata , M.Sc., University of Hawaii at Manoa, “A Biologically

  12. Advanced treatment of biologically pretreated coal gasification wastewater by a novel integration of heterogeneous catalytic ozonation and biological process. (United States)

    Zhuang, Haifeng; Han, Hongjun; Jia, Shengyong; Hou, Baolin; Zhao, Qian


    Advanced treatment of biologically pretreated coal gasification wastewater (CGW) was investigated employing heterogeneous catalytic ozonation integrated with anoxic moving bed biofilm reactor (ANMBBR) and biological aerated filter (BAF) process. The results indicated that catalytic ozonation with the prepared catalyst (i.e. MnOx/SBAC, sewage sludge was converted into sludge based activated carbon (SBAC) which loaded manganese oxides) significantly enhanced performance of pollutants removal by generated hydroxyl radicals. The effluent of catalytic ozonation process was more biodegradable and less toxic than that in ozonation alone. Meanwhile, ANMBBR-BAF showed efficient capacity of pollutants removal in treatment of the effluent of catalytic ozonation at a shorter reaction time, allowing the discharge limits to be met. Therefore, the integrated process with efficient, economical and sustainable advantages was suitable for advanced treatment of real biologically pretreated CGW.

  13. Biomedical and Clinical Importance of Mussel-Inspired Polymers and Materials. (United States)

    Kaushik, Nagendra Kumar; Kaushik, Neha; Pardeshi, Sunil; Sharma, Jai Gopal; Lee, Seung Hyun; Choi, Eun Ha


    The substance secreted by mussels, also known as nature's glue, is a type of liquid protein that hardens rapidly into a solid water-resistant adhesive material. While in seawater or saline conditions, mussels can adhere to all types of surfaces, sustaining its bonds via mussel adhesive proteins (MAPs), a group of proteins containing 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) and catecholic amino acid. Several aspects of this adhesion process have inspired the development of various types of synthetic materials for biomedical applications. Further, there is an urgent need to utilize biologically inspired strategies to develop new biocompatible materials for medical applications. Consequently, many researchers have recently reported bio-inspired techniques and materials that show results similar to or better than those shown by MAPs for a range of medical applications. However, the susceptibility to oxidation of 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine poses major challenges with regard to the practical translation of mussel adhesion. In this review, various strategies are discussed to provide an option for DOPA/metal ion chelation and to compensate for the limitations imposed by facile 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine autoxidation. We discuss the anti-proliferative, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial activity, and adhesive behaviors of mussel bio-products and mussel-inspired materials (MIMs) that make them attractive for synthetic adaptation. The development of biologically inspired adhesive interfaces, bioactive mussel products, MIMs, and arising areas of research leading to biomedical applications are considered in this review.

  14. Biomedical and Clinical Importance of Mussel-Inspired Polymers and Materials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nagendra Kumar Kaushik


    Full Text Available The substance secreted by mussels, also known as nature’s glue, is a type of liquid protein that hardens rapidly into a solid water-resistant adhesive material. While in seawater or saline conditions, mussels can adhere to all types of surfaces, sustaining its bonds via mussel adhesive proteins (MAPs, a group of proteins containing 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA and catecholic amino acid. Several aspects of this adhesion process have inspired the development of various types of synthetic materials for biomedical applications. Further, there is an urgent need to utilize biologically inspired strategies to develop new biocompatible materials for medical applications. Consequently, many researchers have recently reported bio-inspired techniques and materials that show results similar to or better than those shown by MAPs for a range of medical applications. However, the susceptibility to oxidation of 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine poses major challenges with regard to the practical translation of mussel adhesion. In this review, various strategies are discussed to provide an option for DOPA/metal ion chelation and to compensate for the limitations imposed by facile 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine autoxidation. We discuss the anti-proliferative, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial activity, and adhesive behaviors of mussel bio-products and mussel-inspired materials (MIMs that make them attractive for synthetic adaptation. The development of biologically inspired adhesive interfaces, bioactive mussel products, MIMs, and arising areas of research leading to biomedical applications are considered in this review.

  15. Clay Bells: Edo Inspiration (United States)

    Wagner, Tom


    The ceremonial copper and iron bells at the Smithsonian's National Museum of African Art were the author's inspiration for an interdisciplinary unit with a focus on the contributions various cultures make toward the richness of a community. The author of this article describes an Edo bell-inspired ceramic project incorporating slab-building…

  16. Using Simple Manipulatives to Improve Student Comprehension of a Complex Biological Process: Protein Synthesis (United States)

    Guzman, Karen; Bartlett, John


    Biological systems and living processes involve a complex interplay of biochemicals and macromolecular structures that can be challenging for undergraduate students to comprehend and, thus, misconceptions abound. Protein synthesis, or translation, is an example of a biological process for which students often hold many misconceptions. This article…

  17. Hybrid Adsorption-Membrane Biological Reactors for Improved Performance and Reliability of Perchlorate Removal Processes (United States)


    carbon supply for the autotrophic perchlorate reducing bacteria. The membrane used in the reactor is a hollow-fiber microfiltration membrane made from...1 HYBRID ADSORPTION- MEMBRANE BIOLOGICAL REACTORS FOR IMPROVED PERFORMANCE AND RELIABILITY OF PERCHLORATE REMOVAL PROCESSES L.C. Schideman...Center Champaign, IL 61826, USA ABSTRACT This study introduces the novel HAMBgR process (Hybrid Adsorption Membrane Biological Reactor) and

  18. Bio-inspired computation in telecommunications

    CERN Document Server

    Yang, Xin-She; Ting, TO


    Bio-inspired computation, especially those based on swarm intelligence, has become increasingly popular in the last decade. Bio-Inspired Computation in Telecommunications reviews the latest developments in bio-inspired computation from both theory and application as they relate to telecommunications and image processing, providing a complete resource that analyzes and discusses the latest and future trends in research directions. Written by recognized experts, this is a must-have guide for researchers, telecommunication engineers, computer scientists and PhD students.

  19. Pulsed electrical discharges for medicine and biology techniques, processes, applications

    CERN Document Server

    Kolikov, Victor


    This book presents the application of pulsed electrical discharges in water and water dispersions of metal nanoparticles in medicine (surgery, dentistry, and oncology), biology, and ecology. The intensive electrical and shock waves represent a novel technique to destroy viruses and this way to  prepare anti-virus vaccines. The method of pulsed electrical discharges in water allows to decontaminate water from almost all known bacteria and spores of fungi being present in human beings. The nanoparticles used are not genotoxic and mutagenic. This book is useful for researchers and graduate students.

  20. Microgravity Fluids for Biology, Workshop (United States)

    Griffin, DeVon; Kohl, Fred; Massa, Gioia D.; Motil, Brian; Parsons-Wingerter, Patricia; Quincy, Charles; Sato, Kevin; Singh, Bhim; Smith, Jeffrey D.; Wheeler, Raymond M.


    Microgravity Fluids for Biology represents an intersection of biology and fluid physics that present exciting research challenges to the Space Life and Physical Sciences Division. Solving and managing the transport processes and fluid mechanics in physiological and biological systems and processes are essential for future space exploration and colonization of space by humans. Adequate understanding of the underlying fluid physics and transport mechanisms will provide new, necessary insights and technologies for analyzing and designing biological systems critical to NASAs mission. To enable this mission, the fluid physics discipline needs to work to enhance the understanding of the influence of gravity on the scales and types of fluids (i.e., non-Newtonian) important to biology and life sciences. In turn, biomimetic, bio-inspired and synthetic biology applications based on physiology and biology can enrich the fluid mechanics and transport phenomena capabilities of the microgravity fluid physics community.

  1. Characteristics of Molecular-biological Systems and Process-network Synthesis

    CERN Document Server

    Papp, L; Friedler, F; Fan, L T


    Graph Theoretic Process Network Synthesis is described as an introduction to biological networks. Genetic, protein and metabolic systems are considered. The theoretical work of Kauffman is discussed and amplified by critical property excursions. The scaling apparent in biological systems is shown. Applications to evolution and reverse engineering are construed. The use of several programs, such as the Synprops, Design of molecules, Therm and Knapsack are suggested as instruments to study biological process network synthesis. The properties of robust self-assembly and Self-Organizing synthesis are important contributors to the discussion. The bar code of life and intelligent design is reviewed. The need for better data in biological systems is emphasized.

  2. Coupled model of physical and biological processes affecting maize pollination (United States)

    Arritt, R.; Westgate, M.; Riese, J.; Falk, M.; Takle, E.


    Controversy over the use of genetically modified (GM) crops has led to increased interest in evaluating and controlling the potential for inadvertent outcrossing in open-pollinated crops such as maize. In response to this problem we have developed a Lagrangian model of pollen dispersion as a component of a coupled end-to-end (anther to ear) physical-biological model of maize pollination. The Lagrangian method is adopted because of its generality and flexibility: first, the method readily accommodates flow fields of arbitrary complexity; second, each element of the material being transported can be identified by its source, time of release, or other properties of interest. The latter allows pollen viability to be estimated as a function of such factors as travel time, temperature, and relative humidity, so that the physical effects of airflow and turbulence on pollen dispersion can be considered together with the biological aspects of pollen release and viability. Predicted dispersion of pollen compares well both to observations and to results from a simpler Gaussian plume model. Ability of the Lagrangian model to handle complex air flows is demonstrated by application to pollen dispersion in the vicinity of an agricultural shelter belt. We also show results indicating that pollen viability can be quantified by an "aging function" that accounts for temperature, humidity, and time of exposure.

  3. Physicists get INSPIREd

    CERN Multimedia

    CERN Bulletin


    Particle physicists thrive on information. They first create information by performing experiments or elaborating theoretical conjectures and then they share it through publications and various web tools. The INSPIRE service, just released, will bring state of the art information retrieval to the fingertips of researchers.   Keeping track of the information shared within the particle physics community has long been the task of libraries at the larger labs, such as CERN, DESY, Fermilab and SLAC, as well as the focus of indispensible services like arXiv and those of the Particle Data Group. In 2007, many providers of information in the field came together for a summit at SLAC to see how physics information resources could be enhanced, and the INSPIRE project emerged from that meeting. The vision behind INSPIRE was built by a survey launched by the four labs to evaluate the real needs of the community. INSPIRE responds to these directives from the community by combining the most successful aspe...

  4. Aerobic Digestion. Biological Treatment Process Control. Instructor's Guide. (United States)

    Klopping, Paul H.

    This unit on aerobic sludge digestion covers the theory of the process, system components, factors that affect the process performance, standard operational concerns, indicators of steady-state operations, and operational problems. The instructor's guide includes: (1) an overview of the unit; (2) lesson plan; (3) lecture outline (keyed to a set of…

  5. Pretreatment of lignocellulose with biological acid recycling (the Biosulfurol process)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Groenestijn, van J.; Hazewinkel, O.; Bakker, R.R.C.


    A biomass pretreatment process is being developed based on contacting lignocellulosic biomass with 70% sulfuric acid and subsequent hydrolysis by adding water. In this process, the hydrolysate can be fermented yielding ethanol, while the sulfuric acid is partly recovered by anion-selective membranes

  6. Systems Biology Graphical Notation: Process Description language Level 1 Version 1.3. (United States)

    Moodie, Stuart; Le Novère, Nicolas; Demir, Emek; Mi, Huaiyu; Villéger, Alice


    The Systems Biological Graphical Notation (SBGN) is an international community effort for standardized graphical representations of biological pathways and networks. The goal of SBGN is to provide unambiguous pathway and network maps for readers with different scientific backgrounds as well as to support efficient and accurate exchange of biological knowledge between different research communities, industry, and other players in systems biology. Three SBGN languages, Process Description (PD), Entity Relationship (ER) and Activity Flow (AF), allow for the representation of different aspects of biological and biochemical systems at different levels of detail. The SBGN Process Description language represents biological entities and processes between these entities within a network. SBGN PD focuses on the mechanistic description and temporal dependencies of biological interactions and transformations. The nodes (elements) are split into entity nodes describing, e.g., metabolites, proteins, genes and complexes, and process nodes describing, e.g., reactions and associations. The edges (connections) provide descriptions of relationships (or influences) between the nodes, such as consumption, production, stimulation and inhibition. Among all three languages of SBGN, PD is the closest to metabolic and regulatory pathways in biological literature and textbooks, but its well-defined semantics offer a superior precision in expressing biological knowledge.

  7. INSPIRE from the JRC Point of View

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vlado Cetl


    Full Text Available This paper summarises some recent developments in INSPIRE implementation from the JRC (Joint Research Centre point of view. The INSPIRE process started around 11 years ago and today, clear results and benefits can be seen. Spatial data are more accessible and shared more frequently between countries and at the European level. In addition to this, efficient, unified coordination and collaboration between different stakeholders and participants has been achieved, which is another great success. The JRC, as a scientific think-tank of the European Commission, has played a very important role in this process from the very beginning. This role is in line with its mission, which is to provide customer-driven scientific and technical support for the conception, development, implementation and monitoring of European Union (EU policies. The JRC acts as the overall technical coordinator of INSPIRE, but it also carries out the activities necessary to support the coherent implementation of INSPIRE, by helping member states in the implementation process. Experiences drawn from collaboration and negotiation in each country and at the European level will be of great importance in the revision of the INSPIRE Directive, which is envisaged for 2014. Keywords: spatial data infrastructure (SDI; INSPIRE; development; Joint Research Centre (JRC

  8. Analysis of biological processes and diseases using text mining approaches. (United States)

    Krallinger, Martin; Leitner, Florian; Valencia, Alfonso


    A number of biomedical text mining systems have been developed to extract biologically relevant information directly from the literature, complementing bioinformatics methods in the analysis of experimentally generated data. We provide a short overview of the general characteristics of natural language data, existing biomedical literature databases, and lexical resources relevant in the context of biomedical text mining. A selected number of practically useful systems are introduced together with the type of user queries supported and the results they generate. The extraction of biological relationships, such as protein-protein interactions as well as metabolic and signaling pathways using information extraction systems, will be discussed through example cases of cancer-relevant proteins. Basic strategies for detecting associations of genes to diseases together with literature mining of mutations, SNPs, and epigenetic information (methylation) are described. We provide an overview of disease-centric and gene-centric literature mining methods for linking genes to phenotypic and genotypic aspects. Moreover, we discuss recent efforts for finding biomarkers through text mining and for gene list analysis and prioritization. Some relevant issues for implementing a customized biomedical text mining system will be pointed out. To demonstrate the usefulness of literature mining for the molecular oncology domain, we implemented two cancer-related applications. The first tool consists of a literature mining system for retrieving human mutations together with supporting articles. Specific gene mutations are linked to a set of predefined cancer types. The second application consists of a text categorization system supporting breast cancer-specific literature search and document-based breast cancer gene ranking. Future trends in text mining emphasize the importance of community efforts such as the BioCreative challenge for the development and integration of multiple systems into

  9. Sustainable Production Process of Biological Mineral Feed Additives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Agnieszka Zielinska


    Full Text Available Problem statement: This study discussed the problem of accumulation of Zn and Cu in the topsoil as a result of application of mineral feed additives that possess low bioavailability in animal diet. The review considered the production process of mineral feed additives in which a product supplies microelements in highly bioavailable form. Enrichment of natural biomass of edible microalgae with microelement metal ions, which supply microelements of feeding significance in livestock diet, is considered in term of sustainable production. Approach: Production of microalgae-derived products as mineral feed additives requires elaboration of the processes for cultivation of alga, enrichment process and afterwards recovery of the enriched biomass from the solution to obtain liquid free of cells that could be reused in the next process. In this study membrane bioreactor was considered as a method for separation, both in photobioreactor (growth of microorganism as well as in the enrichment process. Results: Effort involved in thermal and chemical separation techniques is higher than that in mechanical techniques. Membrane bioreactors which are usually applied to treat wastewater, both industrial and domestic. This study discussed method to separate a valuable biomass of enriched microalgae and reuse the solution with residual metal ions that can be used once again in the subsequent biosorption process. Conclusion/Recommendation: Taking into consideration care about the environment it is better to apply membrane modules in the production process in terms of sustainable production. The proposed solution assumed the application of membrane modules as a separation step after enrichment process and biomass recovery.

  10. Using the Unified Modelling Language (UML) to guide the systemic description of biological processes and systems. (United States)

    Roux-Rouquié, Magali; Caritey, Nicolas; Gaubert, Laurent; Rosenthal-Sabroux, Camille


    One of the main issues in Systems Biology is to deal with semantic data integration. Previously, we examined the requirements for a reference conceptual model to guide semantic integration based on the systemic principles. In the present paper, we examine the usefulness of the Unified Modelling Language (UML) to describe and specify biological systems and processes. This makes unambiguous representations of biological systems, which would be suitable for translation into mathematical and computational formalisms, enabling analysis, simulation and prediction of these systems behaviours.

  11. Bio-inspired nanomaterials and their applications as antimicrobial agents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smita Sachin Zinjarde


    Full Text Available In the recent decades, the interdisciplinary field of nanotechnology has expanded extensively. A variety of nanoparticles (NPs have been used for a number of specialized applications. In this era facing a major problem of microorganisms developing antibiotic resistance, NPs are a lucrative option. Most physical and chemical processes of NP synthesis are associated with drawbacks and bio-inspired NPs have now become popular. This review summarizes the recent developments on the biosynthesis, characterization, and applications of NPs with particular reference to their use as antimicrobial agents. Reviewed here is the synthesis of gold and silver NPs (AgNPs by a variety of biological forms and biomolecules as well as their effectiveness toward different fungal and bacterial pathogens. The use of gold NPs (bio-inspired by plants, fungi, and bacteria and AgNPs, synthesized by carbohydrates (of plant, animal, and microbial origin, plant parts (bark, callus, leaves, peels, and tubers, fungi, and bacteria have been highlighted. In addition, the use of zinc oxide NPs (although not bio-inspired as novel antimicrobial agents have also been discussed.

  12. Mistaking geography for biology: inferring processes from species distributions. (United States)

    Warren, Dan L; Cardillo, Marcel; Rosauer, Dan F; Bolnick, Daniel I


    Over the past few decades, there has been a rapid proliferation of statistical methods that infer evolutionary and ecological processes from data on species distributions. These methods have led to considerable new insights, but they often fail to account for the effects of historical biogeography on present-day species distributions. Because the geography of speciation can lead to patterns of spatial and temporal autocorrelation in the distributions of species within a clade, this can result in misleading inferences about the importance of deterministic processes in generating spatial patterns of biodiversity. In this opinion article, we discuss ways in which patterns of species distributions driven by historical biogeography are often interpreted as evidence of particular evolutionary or ecological processes. We focus on three areas that are especially prone to such misinterpretations: community phylogenetics, environmental niche modelling, and analyses of beta diversity (compositional turnover of biodiversity).

  13. INSPIRE and SPIRES Log File Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Adams, Cole; /Wheaton Coll. /SLAC


    SPIRES, an aging high-energy physics publication data base, is in the process of being replaced by INSPIRE. In order to ease the transition from SPIRES to INSPIRE it is important to understand user behavior and the drivers for adoption. The goal of this project was to address some questions in regards to the presumed two-thirds of the users still using SPIRES. These questions are answered through analysis of the log files from both websites. A series of scripts were developed to collect and interpret the data contained in the log files. The common search patterns and usage comparisons are made between INSPIRE and SPIRES, and a method for detecting user frustration is presented. The analysis reveals a more even split than originally thought as well as the expected trend of user transition to INSPIRE.

  14. Role of Inspiration in Creating Textile Design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bakhtawer Sabir Malik


    Full Text Available In design-making process, Source of inspiration has a vital role, both in defining the characteristics of a new design and in informing the creation of a distinct design. This study was based on the idea to promote creative and original textile designs by using a source of inspiration. The purpose of the study was to create some original and innovative designs for textiles by using natural paintings of William Morris as an inspiration and incorporating modern elements in the design. Several designs were made and three were selected that were innovative and suitable for textile designing. This study marks the significance of a source of inspiration in textile designing.

  15. Advanced treatment of biologically pretreated coal gasification wastewater by a novel integration of heterogeneous Fenton oxidation and biological process. (United States)

    Xu, Peng; Han, Hongjun; Zhuang, Haifeng; Hou, Baolin; Jia, Shengyong; Xu, Chunyan; Wang, Dexin


    Laboratorial scale experiments were conducted in order to investigate a novel system integrating heterogeneous Fenton oxidation (HFO) with anoxic moving bed biofilm reactor (ANMBBR) and biological aerated filter (BAF) process on advanced treatment of biologically pretreated coal gasification wastewater (CGW). The results indicated that HFO with the prepared catalyst (FeOx/SBAC, sewage sludge based activated carbon (SBAC) which loaded Fe oxides) played a key role in eliminating COD and COLOR as well as in improving the biodegradability of raw wastewater. The surface reaction and hydroxyl radicals (OH) oxidation were the mechanisms for FeOx/SBAC catalytic reaction. Compared with ANMBBR-BAF process, the integrated system was more effective in abating COD, BOD5, total phenols (TPs), total nitrogen (TN) and COLOR and could shorten the retention time. Therefore, the integrated system was a promising technology for engineering applications.

  16. Biological processes for the production of aryl sulfates

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)


    The present invention generally relates to the field of biotechnology as it applies to the production of aryl sulfates using polypeptides or recombinant cells comprising said polypeptides. More particularly, the present invention pertains to polypeptides having aryl sulfotransferase activity......, recombinant host cells expressing same and processes for the production of aryl sulfates employing these polypeptides or recombinant host cells....

  17. Anaerobic Digestion. Student Manual. Biological Treatment Process Control. (United States)

    Carnegie, John W., Ed.

    This student manual contains the textual material for a four-lesson unit on anaerobic digestion control. Areas addressed include: (1) anaerobic sludge digestion (considering the nature of raw sludge, purposes of anaerobic digestion, the results of digestion, types of equipment, and other topics); (2) digester process control (considering feeding…

  18. Determining biomass in biological processes. Methods for wastewater biological treatment; Determinacion de la biomasa en procesos biologicos

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arnaiz, C.; Isaac, L.; Lebrato, J. [Universidad Politecnica de Sevilla (Spain)


    Biomass concentration and activity are two important parameters for the successful design and control of biological processes in wastewater treatment. Widely used parameter for biomass characterization is dry weight concentration. This parameter is, however, not sufficient to describe biomass activity. Improved analytical methods are needed in order to understand the physiological behaviour of the biomass. In this work, conventional and advanced analytical methods for biomass determination in wastewater treatment are reviewed. (Author) 27 refs.

  19. Low cost materials of construction for biological processes: Proceedings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The workshop was held, May 1993 in conjunction with the 15th Symposium on Biotechnology for Fuels and Chemicals. The purpose of this workshop was to present information on the biomass to ethanol process in the context of materials selection and through presentation and discussion, identify promising avenues for future research. Six technical presentations were grouped into two sessions: process assessment and technology assessment. In the process assessment session, the group felt that the pretreatment area would require the most extensive materials research due the complex chemical, physical and thermal environment. Discussion centered around the possibility of metals being leached into the process stream and their effect on the fermentation mechanics. Linings were a strong option for pretreatment assuming the economics were favorable. Fermentation was considered an important area for research also, due to the unique complex of compounds and dual phases present. Erosion in feedstock handling equipment was identified as a minor concern. In the technology assessment session, methodologies in corrosion analysis were presented in addition to an overview of current coatings/linings technology. Widely practiced testing strategies, including ASTM methods, as well as novel procedures for micro-analysis of corrosion were discussed. Various coatings and linings, including polymers and ceramics, were introduced. The prevailing recommendations for testing included keeping the testing simple until the problem warranted a more detailed approach and developing standardized testing procedures to ensure the data was reproducible and applicable. The need to evaluate currently available materials such as coatings/linings, carbon/stainless steels, or fiberglass reinforced plastic was emphasized. It was agreed that economic evaluation of each material candidate must be an integral part of any research plan.

  20. Sustainable Production Process of Biological Mineral Feed Additives


    Agnieszka Zielinska; Katarzyna Chojnacka; Marjana Simonic


    Problem statement: This study discussed the problem of accumulation of Zn and Cu in the topsoil as a result of application of mineral feed additives that possess low bioavailability in animal diet. The review considered the production process of mineral feed additives in which a product supplies microelements in highly bioavailable form. Enrichment of natural biomass of edible microalgae with microelement metal ions, which supply microelements of feeding significance in livestock diet, is con...

  1. Bio-inspired variable structural color materials. (United States)

    Zhao, Yuanjin; Xie, Zhuoying; Gu, Hongcheng; Zhu, Cun; Gu, Zhongze


    Natural structural color materials, especially those that can undergo reversible changes, are attracting increasing interest in a wide variety of research fields. Inspired by the natural creatures, many elaborately nanostructured photonic materials with variable structural colors were developed. These materials have found important applications in switches, display devices, sensors, and so on. In this critical review, we will provide up-to-date research concerning the natural and bio-inspired photonic materials with variable structural colors. After introducing the variable structural colors in natural creatures, we will focus on the studies of artificial variable structural color photonic materials, including their bio-inspired designs, fabrications and applications. The prospects for the future development of these fantastic variable structural color materials will also be presented. We believe this review will promote the communications among biology, bionics, chemistry, optical physics, and material science (196 references).

  2. Inspiration is "Mission Critical" (United States)

    McCarthy, D. W.; DeVore, E.; Lebofsky, L.


    In spring 2013, the President's budget proposal restructured the nation's approach to STEM education, eliminating ˜$50M of NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) funding with the intent of transferring it to the Dept. of Education, National Science Foundation, and Smithsonian Institution. As a result, Education and Public Outreach (EPO) would no longer be a NASA mission requirement and funds that had already been competed, awarded, and productively utilized were lost. Since 1994, partnerships of scientists, engineers, and education specialists were required to create innovative approaches to EPO, providing a direct source of inspiration for today's youth that may now be lost. Although seldom discussed or evaluated, "inspiration" is the beginning of lasting education. For decades, NASA's crewed and robotic missions have motivated students of all ages and have demonstrated a high degree of leverage in society. Through personal experiences we discuss (1) the importance of inspiration in education, (2) how NASA plays a vital role in STEM education, (3) examples of high-leverage educational materials showing why NASA should continue embedding EPO specialists within mission teams, and (4) how we can document the role of inspiration. We believe that personal histories are an important means of assessing the success of EPO. We hope this discussion will lead other people to document similar stories of educational success and perhaps to undertake longitudinal studies of the impact of inspiration.

  3. State Estimation for a Biological Phosphorus Removal Process using an Asymptotic Observer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larose, Claude Alain; Jørgensen, Sten Bay


    This study investigated the use of an asymptotic observer for state estimation in a continuous biological phosphorus removal process. The estimated states are the concentration of heterotrophic, autotrophic, and phosphorus accumulating organisms, polyphosphate, glycogen and PHA. The reaction scheme...

  4. Consequences of Persistent Small-Scale Biological Structure on Upper Ocean Trophic Processes (United States)


    Consequences Of Persistent Small-Scale Biological Structure On Upper Ocean Trophic Processes Timothy J. Cowles College of Oceanic and Atmospheric... Sciences 104 Oceanography Admin Bldg Oregon State University Corvallis, OR 97331-5503 Office: (541) 737-3966 FAX: (541) 737-2064 email: cowles...interactions between small-scale biological and physical processes in the upper ocean. This project addresses that goal by examining the coherence in

  5. Revealing complex function, process and pathway interactions with high-throughput expression and biological annotation data. (United States)

    Singh, Nitesh Kumar; Ernst, Mathias; Liebscher, Volkmar; Fuellen, Georg; Taher, Leila


    The biological relationships both between and within the functions, processes and pathways that operate within complex biological systems are only poorly characterized, making the interpretation of large scale gene expression datasets extremely challenging. Here, we present an approach that integrates gene expression and biological annotation data to identify and describe the interactions between biological functions, processes and pathways that govern a phenotype of interest. The product is a global, interconnected network, not of genes but of functions, processes and pathways, that represents the biological relationships within the system. We validated our approach on two high-throughput expression datasets describing organismal and organ development. Our findings are well supported by the available literature, confirming that developmental processes and apoptosis play key roles in cell differentiation. Furthermore, our results suggest that processes related to pluripotency and lineage commitment, which are known to be critical for development, interact mainly indirectly, through genes implicated in more general biological processes. Moreover, we provide evidence that supports the relevance of cell spatial organization in the developing liver for proper liver function. Our strategy can be viewed as an abstraction that is useful to interpret high-throughput data and devise further experiments.

  6. Using Data Exclusivity Grants to Incentivize Cumulative Innovation of Biologics' Manufacturing Processes. (United States)

    Levi, Eric Lawrence

    The pharmaceutical market is divided into two types of compounds: small-molecule chemical compounds and large-molecule biologics. Due to biologics’ molecular sizes and the current scientific state of biologics manufacturing, manufacturing facilities and processes require frequent reassessment to ensure production of safe, pure, and potent therapeutics. Manufacturers utilize patent and drug regulatory law to protect their investments and simultaneously signal where innovation and investment are lacking. The current four- and twelve-year regimented structures of the Biologics Price, Competition, and Innovation Act do not keep pace with scientific development; biologics manufacturing processes drift with time, and if a manufacturer can obtain a higher degree of process control, then it should not feel restricted to wait until their exclusivity period lapses. Currently, the FDA rarely grants market exclusivity privileges for manufacturing process improvements alone; hence, manufacturing processes--or at least large portions thereof--are typically withheld as trade secrets or strategically claimed within companion composition claims. As a result, significant opportunity exists in regulatory framework to incentivize the research and development of biologics manufacturing processes. By creating a one- to four-year data exclusivity extension opportunity, manufacturers will feel more comfortable reinvesting their returns on investment towards manufacturing efficiency, and manufacturers can capitalize on the complex-molecule nature of their biologic.

  7. Chemical industrial wastewater treated by combined biological and chemical oxidation process. (United States)

    Guomin, Cao; Guoping, Yang; Mei, Sheng; Yongjian, Wang


    Wastewaters from phenol and rubber synthesis were treated by the activated sludge process in a large-scale chemical factory in Shanghai, but the final effluent quality cannot conform with the local discharge limit without using river water for dilution. Therefore, this chemical factory had to upgrade its wastewater treatment plant. To fully use the present buildings and equipment during upgrading of the chemical factory's wastewater treatment plant and to save operation costs, a sequential biological pre-treatement, chemical oxidation, and biological post-treatment (or BCB for short) process had been proposed and investigated in a pilot trial. The pilot trial results showed that about 80% COD in the chemical wastewater could be removed through anoxic and aerobic degradation in the biological pre-treatement section, and the residual COD in the effluent of the biological pre-treatment section belongs to refractory chemicals which cannot be removed by the normal biological process. The refractory chemicals were partial oxidized using Fenton's reagent in the chemical oxidation section to improve their biodegradability; subsequently the wastewater was treated by the SBR process in the biological post-treatment section. The final effluent COD reached the first grade discharge limit (process, the operation cost of the BCB process increased by about 0.5 yuan (RMB) per cubic metre wastewater, but about 1,240,000 m(3) a(-1) dilution water could be saved and the COD emission could be cut down by 112 tonne each year.

  8. tRNAs as regulators of biological processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Medha eRaina


    Full Text Available Transfer RNAs (tRNA are best known for their role as adaptors during translation of the genetic code. Beyond their canonical role during protein biosynthesis, tRNAs also perform additional functions in both prokaryotes and eukaryotes for example in regulating gene expression. Aminoacylated tRNAs have also been implicated as substrates for non-ribosomal peptide bond formation, post-translational protein labeling, modification of phospholipids in the cell membrane and antibiotic biosyntheses. Most recently tRNA fragments, or tRFs, have also been recognized to play regulatory roles. Here we examine in more details some of the new functions emerging for tRNA in a variety of cellular processes outside of protein synthesis.

  9. Effect of Process-Oriented Guided-Inquiry Learning on Non-majors Biology Students' Understanding of Biological Classification (United States)

    Wozniak, Breann M.

    The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of process-oriented guided-inquiry learning (POGIL) on non-majors college biology students' understanding of biological classification. This study addressed an area of science instruction, POGIL in the non-majors college biology laboratory, which has yet to be qualitatively and quantitatively researched. A concurrent triangulation mixed methods approach was used. Students' understanding of biological classification was measured in two areas: scores on pre and posttests (consisting of 11 multiple choice questions), and conceptions of classification as elicited in pre and post interviews and instructor reflections. Participants were Minnesota State University, Mankato students enrolled in BIOL 100 Summer Session. One section was taught with the traditional curriculum (n = 6) and the other section in the POGIL curriculum (n = 10) developed by the researcher. Three students from each section were selected to take part in pre and post interviews. There were no significant differences within each teaching method (p vs. M = 7.330 +/- .330; z =-1.729, p = .084) and the traditional group may have scored higher on the pretest than the posttest (M = 8.333 +/- .333 vs M = 7.333 +/- .333; z = -1.650 , p = .099). Two themes emerged after the interviews and instructor reflections: 1) After instruction students had a more extensive understanding of classification in three areas: vocabulary terms, physical characteristics, and types of evidence used to classify. Both groups extended their understanding, but only POGIL students could explain how molecular evidence is used in classification. 2) The challenges preventing students from understanding classification were: familiar animal categories and aquatic habitats, unfamiliar organisms, combining and subdividing initial groupings, and the hierarchical nature of classification. The POGIL students were the only group to surpass these challenges after the teaching intervention. This

  10. Life's origin: the cosmic, planetary and biological processes (United States)

    Scattergood, T.; Des Marais, D.; Jahnke, L.


    From elements formed in interstellar furnaces to humans peering back at the stars, the evolution of life has been a long, intricate and perhaps inevitable process. Life as we know it requires a planet orbiting a star at just the right distance so that water can exist in liquid form. It needs a rich supply of chemicals and energy sources. On Earth, the combination of chemistry and energy generated molecules that evolved ways of replicating themselves and of passing information from one generation to the next. Thus, the thread of life began. This chart traces the thread, maintained by DNA molecules for much of its history, as it weaves its way through the primitive oceans, gaining strength and diversity along the way. Organisms eventually moved onto the land, where advanced forms, including humans, ultimately arose. Finally, assisted by a technology of its own making, life has reached back out into space to understand its own origins, to expand into new realms, and to seek other living threads in the cosmos.

  11. Sequential biological process for molybdenum extraction from hydrodesulphurization spent catalyst. (United States)

    Vyas, Shruti; Ting, Yen-Peng


    Spent catalyst bioleaching with Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans has been widely studied and low Mo leaching has often been reported. This work describes an enhanced extraction of Mo via a two stage sequential process for the bioleaching of hydrodesulphurization spent catalyst containing Molybdenum, Nickel and, Aluminium. In the first stage, two-step bioleaching was performed using Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans, and achieved 89.4% Ni, 20.9% Mo and 12.7% Al extraction in 15 days. To increase Mo extraction, the bioleached catalyst was subjected to a second stage bioleaching using Escherichia coli, during which 99% of the remaining Mo was extracted in 25 days. This sequential bioleaching strategy selectively extracted Ni in the first stage and Mo in the second stage, and is a more environmentally friendly alternative to sequential chemical leaching with alkaline reagents for improved Mo extraction. Kinetic modelling to establish the rate determining step in both stages of bioleaching showed that in the first stage, Mo extraction was chemical reaction controlled whereas in the subsequent stage, product layer diffusion model provided the best fit.

  12. Microbiology and Molecular Biology Tools for Biogas Process Analysis, Diagnosis and Control. (United States)

    Lebuhn, Michael; Weiß, Stefan; Munk, Bernhard; Guebitz, Georg M


    Many biotechnological processes such as biogas production or defined biotransformations are carried out by microorganisms or tightly cooperating microbial communities. Process breakdown is the maximum credible accident for the operator. Any time savings that can be provided by suitable early-warning systems and allow for specific countermeasures are of great value. Process disturbance, frequently due to nutritional shortcomings, malfunction or operational deficits, is evidenced conventionally by process chemistry parameters. However, knowledge on systems microbiology and its function has essentially increased in the last two decades, and molecular biology tools, most of which are directed against nucleic acids, have been developed to analyze and diagnose the process. Some of these systems have been shown to indicate changes of the process status considerably earlier than the conventionally applied process chemistry parameters. This is reasonable because the triggering catalyst is determined, activity changes of the microbes that perform the reaction. These molecular biology tools have thus the potential to add to and improve the established process diagnosis system. This chapter is dealing with the actual state of the art of biogas process analysis in practice, and introduces molecular biology tools that have been shown to be of particular value in complementing the current systems of process monitoring and diagnosis, with emphasis on nucleic acid targeted molecular biology systems.

  13. Particle size distribution and removal in the chemical-biological flocculation process

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Zhi-bin; ZHAO Jian-fu; XIA Si-qing; LIU Chang-qing; KANG Xing-sheng


    The particle characterization from the influent and effluent of a chemical-biological flocculation (CBF) process was studied with a laser diffraction device. Water samples from a chemically enhanced primary treatment (CEPT) process and a primary sediment tank process were also analyzed for comparison. The results showed that CBF process was not only effective for both the big size particles and small size particles removal, but also the best particle removal process in the three processes. The results also indicated that CBF process was superior to CEPT process in the heavy metals removal. The high and non-selective removal for heavy metals might be closely related to its strong ability to eliminate small particles. Samples from different locations in CBF reactors showed that small particles were easier to aggregate into big ones and those disrupted flocs could properly flocculate again along CBF reactor because of the biological flocculation.

  14. Nature as Inspiration (United States)

    Tank, Kristina; Moore, Tamara; Strnat, Meg


    This article describes the final lesson within a seven-day STEM and literacy unit that is part of the Picture STEM curriculum (pictureSTEM. org) and uses engineering to integrate science and mathematics learning in a meaningful way (Tank and Moore 2013). For this engineering challenge, students used nature as a source of inspiration for designs to…

  15. An Ark of Inspiration. (United States)

    King, Steve


    Describes an art project suitable for middle and high school students in which they either combine identifiable parts from different animals to create one creature or take one animal and creatively distort it. Explains that this lesson enables students to be satisfied with their animal-inspired artwork. (CMK)

  16. Ndebele Inspired Houses (United States)

    Rice, Nicole


    The house paintings of the South African Ndebele people are more than just an attempt to improve the aesthetics of a community; they are a source of identity and significance for Ndebele women. In this article, the author describes an art project wherein students use the tradition of Ndebele house painting as inspiration for creating their own…

  17. Inspire & innovate : Endbericht

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cornelissen, T.; Lugtenaar, M.; Balendonck, J.; Ruckelshausen, A.; Wit, de R.


    Met het project Inspire & Innovate helpt de EU Nederlandse en Duitse bedrijven in met name de sectoren Food en Life Sciences op weg. Het project is bedoeld voor MKB-bedrijven in de Euregio Rijn-Waal en de EUREGIO die inhoudelijke en financiële ondersteuning zoeken om hun innovatieplannen door te

  18. Optimal Control through Biologically-Inspired Pursuit (United States)


    Transactions on Automatic Control 48, 988– 1001. Roumeliotis, S.I. and G.A. Bekey (2002). Distributed multi-robot localization. IEEE Transactions on Robotics and...1999). Distributed covering by ant- robots using evaporating traces. IEEE Transactions on Robotics and Automation 15(5), 918–933.

  19. Biologically Inspired Polymer Micro-Patterned Adhesives (United States)


    contained a volatile, hydrophilic phase.1 Another suggests that the pad secretion from the locust Locusta migratoria is an emulsion of lipidic nano...R.; Stierhof, Y. D.; Gorb, S.; Schwarz, U. Chemical composition of the attachment pad secretion of the locust Locusta migratoria . Insect Biochem

  20. Biological Inspiration for Agile Autonomous Air Vehicles (United States)


    vehicles in confined airspace will quickly exceed the abilities of a remote human operator, substantial autonomy is essential. The political, ethical ...and Kirschner, 1997 provide an in-depth but accessible discussion on the interplay of biochemistry, genetics and embryology in animal evolution

  1. Learning from nature: biologically-inspired sensors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wicaksono, D.H.B.


    New emerging sensing applications demand novel sensors in micro-/nano-scale to enable integration and embedding into higher level structures or systems. Downsizing the structure will usually decrease the sensitivity of the sensors, since the sensitivity is a function of geometrical parameters, e.g.

  2. Project Summary: Biology-Inspired Autonomous Control (United States)


    relative high performance predictability currently associated with automated machines. Anyone who has walked a normally well behaved male dog in the...possibilities as well. Attitude control systems normally include proportional and integral control on sensed attitude, with damping and robustness provided...attacking predators. Some examples include red-wing black bird nest defense [1], meerkat predator mobbing [2], and predator identification in guppy schools

  3. Biomimetics inspired surfaces for drag reduction and oleophobicity/philicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bharat Bhushan


    Full Text Available The emerging field of biomimetics allows one to mimic biology or nature to develop nanomaterials, nanodevices, and processes which provide desirable properties. Hierarchical structures with dimensions of features ranging from the macroscale to the nanoscale are extremely common in nature and possess properties of interest. There are a large number of objects including bacteria, plants, land and aquatic animals, and seashells with properties of commercial interest. Certain plant leaves, such as lotus (Nelumbo nucifera leaves, are known to be superhydrophobic and self-cleaning due to the hierarchical surface roughness and presence of a wax layer. In addition to a self-cleaning effect, these surfaces with a high contact angle and low contact angle hysteresis also exhibit low adhesion and drag reduction for fluid flow. An aquatic animal, such as a shark, is another model from nature for the reduction of drag in fluid flow. The artificial surfaces inspired from the shark skin and lotus leaf have been created, and in this article the influence of structure on drag reduction efficiency is reviewed. Biomimetic-inspired oleophobic surfaces can be used to prevent contamination of the underwater parts of ships by biological and organic contaminants, including oil. The article also reviews the wetting behavior of oil droplets on various superoleophobic surfaces created in the lab.

  4. Biomimetics inspired surfaces for drag reduction and oleophobicity/philicity. (United States)

    Bhushan, Bharat


    The emerging field of biomimetics allows one to mimic biology or nature to develop nanomaterials, nanodevices, and processes which provide desirable properties. Hierarchical structures with dimensions of features ranging from the macroscale to the nanoscale are extremely common in nature and possess properties of interest. There are a large number of objects including bacteria, plants, land and aquatic animals, and seashells with properties of commercial interest. Certain plant leaves, such as lotus (Nelumbo nucifera) leaves, are known to be superhydrophobic and self-cleaning due to the hierarchical surface roughness and presence of a wax layer. In addition to a self-cleaning effect, these surfaces with a high contact angle and low contact angle hysteresis also exhibit low adhesion and drag reduction for fluid flow. An aquatic animal, such as a shark, is another model from nature for the reduction of drag in fluid flow. The artificial surfaces inspired from the shark skin and lotus leaf have been created, and in this article the influence of structure on drag reduction efficiency is reviewed. Biomimetic-inspired oleophobic surfaces can be used to prevent contamination of the underwater parts of ships by biological and organic contaminants, including oil. The article also reviews the wetting behavior of oil droplets on various superoleophobic surfaces created in the lab.

  5. Biologic

    CERN Document Server

    Kauffman, L H


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

  6. Process for the continuous biological production of lipids, hydrocarbons or mixtures thereof

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van der Wielen, L.A.M.; Heijnen, J.J.


    The present invention is directed to a process for the continuous biological production of lipids, hydrocarbons, hydrocarbon like material or mixtures thereof by conversion of a suitable substrate using micro-organisms, in which process the said substrate is continuously, anaerobically fermented to

  7. Integration of advanced oxidation technologies and biological processes: recent developments, trends, and advances. (United States)

    Tabrizi, Gelareh Bankian; Mehrvar, Mehrab


    The greatest challenge of today's wastewater treatment technology is to optimize the use of biological and chemical wastewater treatment processes. The choice of the process and/or integration of the processes depend strongly on the wastewater characteristics, concentrations, and the desired efficiencies. It has been observed by many investigators that the coupling of a bioreactor and advanced oxidation processes (AOPs) could reduce the final concentrations of the effluent to the desired values. However, optimizing the total cost of the treatment is a challenge, as AOPs are much more expensive than biological processes alone. Therefore, an appropriate design should not only consider the ability of this coupling to reduce the concentration of organic pollutants, but also try to obtain the desired results in a cost effective process. To consider the total cost of the treatment, the residence time in biological and photochemical reactors, the kinetic rates, and the capital and operating costs of the reactors play significant roles. In this study, recent developments and trends (1996-2003) on the integration of photochemical and biological processes for the degradation of problematic pollutants in wastewater have been reviewed. The conditions to get the optimum results from this integration have also been considered. In most of the studies, it has been shown that the integrated processes were more efficient than individual processes. However, slight changes in the configuration of the reactors, temperature, pH, treatment time, concentration of the oxidants, and microorganism's colonies could lead to a great deviation in results. It has also been demonstrated that the treatment cost in both reactors is a function of time, which changes by the flow rate. The minimum cost in the coupling of the processes cannot be achieved unless considering the best treatment time in chemical and biological reactors individually.

  8. Neurobiologically inspired mobile robot navigation and planning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathias Quoy


    Full Text Available After a short review of biologically inspired navigation architectures, mainly relying on modeling the hippocampal anatomy, or at least some of its functions, we present a navigation and planning model for mobile robots. This architecture is based on a model of the hippocampal and prefrontal interactions. In particular, the system relies on the definition of a new cell type “transition cells” that encompasses traditional “place cells”.

  9. Mineralization of 2-chlorophenol by sequential electrochemical reductive dechlorination and biological processes. (United States)

    Arellano-González, Miguel Ángel; González, Ignacio; Texier, Anne-Claire


    In this work, a novel approach was applied to obtain the mineralization of 2-chlorophenol (2-CP) in an electrochemical-biological combined system where an electrocatalytic dehydrogenation process (reductive dechlorination) was coupled to a biological denitrification process. Reductive dechlorination of 2-CP was conducted in an ECCOCEL-type reactor on a Pd-Ni/Ti electrode at a potential of -0.40V vs Ag/AgCl(s)/KCl(sat), achieving 100 percent transformation of 2-CP into phenol. The electrochemically pretreated effluent was fed to a rotating cylinder denitrifying bioreactor where the totality of phenol was mineralized by denitrification, obtaining CO2 and N2 as the end products. The total time required for 2-CP mineralization in the combined electrochemical-biological process was 7.5h. This value is close to those previously reported for electrochemical and advanced oxidation processes but in this case, an efficient process was obtained without accumulation of by-products or generation of excessive energy costs due to the selective electrochemical pretreatment. This study showed that the use of electrochemical reductive pretreatment combined with biological processes could be a promising technology for the removal of recalcitrant molecules, such as chlorophenols, from wastewaters by more efficient, rapid, and environmentally friendly processes.

  10. Nonequilibrium thermodynamics transport and rate processes in physical, chemical and biological systems

    CERN Document Server

    Demirel, Yasar


    Natural phenomena consist of simultaneously occurring transport processes and chemical reactions. These processes may interact with each other and may lead to self-organized structures, fluctuations, instabilities, and evolutionary systems. Nonequilibrium Thermodynamics, 3rd edition emphasizes the unifying role of thermodynamics in analyzing the natural phenomena. This third edition updates and expands on the first and second editions by focusing on the general balance equations for coupled processes of physical, chemical, and biological systems. The new edition contains a new chapte

  11. An overview of biological processes and their potential for CO2 capture. (United States)

    Goli, Amin; Shamiri, Ahmad; Talaiekhozani, Amirreza; Eshtiaghi, Nicky; Aghamohammadi, Nasrin; Aroua, Mohamed Kheireddine


    The extensive amount of available information on global warming suggests that this issue has become prevalent worldwide. Majority of countries have issued laws and policies in response to this concern by requiring their industrial sectors to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, such as CO2. Thus, introducing new and more effective treatment methods, such as biological techniques, is crucial to control the emission of greenhouse gases. Many studies have demonstrated CO2 fixation using photo-bioreactors and raceway ponds, but a comprehensive review is yet to be published on biological CO2 fixation. A comprehensive review of CO2 fixation through biological process is presented in this paper as biological processes are ideal to control both organic and inorganic pollutants. This process can also cover the classification of methods, functional mechanisms, designs, and their operational parameters, which are crucial for efficient CO2 fixation. This review also suggests the bio-trickling filter process as an appropriate approach in CO2 fixation to assist in creating a pollution-free environment. Finally, this paper introduces optimum designs, growth rate models, and CO2 fixation of microalgae, functions, and operations in biological CO2 fixation.

  12. Inspiral into Gargantua

    CERN Document Server

    Gralla, Samuel E; Warburton, Niels


    We model the inspiral of a compact object into a more massive black hole rotating very near the theoretical maximum. We find that once the body enters the near-horizon regime the gravitational radiation is characterized by a constant frequency, equal to (twice) the horizon frequency, with an exponentially damped profile. This contrasts with the usual "chirping" behavior and, if detected, would constitute a "smoking gun" for a near-extremal black hole in nature.

  13. Nature inspires sensors to do more with less. (United States)

    Mulvaney, Shawn P; Sheehan, Paul E


    The world is filled with widely varying chemical, physical, and biological stimuli. Over millennia, organisms have refined their senses to cope with these diverse stimuli, becoming virtuosos in differentiating closely related antigens, handling extremes in concentration, resetting the spent sensing mechanisms, and processing the multiple data streams being generated. Nature successfully deals with both repeating and new stimuli, demonstrating great adaptability when confronted with the latter. Interestingly, nature accomplishes these feats using a fairly simple toolbox. The sensors community continues to draw inspiration from nature's example: just look at the antibodies used as biosensor capture agents or the neural networks that process multivariate data streams. Indeed, many successful sensors have been built by simply mimicking natural systems. However, some of the most exciting breakthroughs occur when the community moves beyond mimicking nature and learns to use nature's tools in innovative ways.

  14. Supramolecular polymer adhesives: advanced materials inspired by nature. (United States)

    Heinzmann, Christian; Weder, Christoph; de Espinosa, Lucas Montero


    Due to their dynamic, stimuli-responsive nature, non-covalent interactions represent versatile design elements that can be found in nature in many molecular processes or materials, where adaptive behavior or reversible connectivity is required. Examples include molecular recognition processes, which trigger biological responses or cell-adhesion to surfaces, and a broad range of animal secreted adhesives with environment-dependent properties. Such advanced functionalities have inspired researchers to employ similar design approaches for the development of synthetic polymers with stimuli-responsive properties. The utilization of non-covalent interactions for the design of adhesives with advanced functionalities such as stimuli responsiveness, bonding and debonding on demand capability, surface selectivity or recyclability is a rapidly emerging subset of this field, which is summarized in this review.

  15. In Vivo Bioluminescent Imaging (BLI: Noninvasive Visualization and Interrogation of Biological Processes in Living Animals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven Ripp


    Full Text Available In vivo bioluminescent imaging (BLI is increasingly being utilized as a method for modern biological research. This process, which involves the noninvasive interrogation of living animals using light emitted from luciferase-expressing bioreporter cells, has been applied to study a wide range of biomolecular functions such as gene function, drug discovery and development, cellular trafficking, protein-protein interactions, and especially tumorigenesis, cancer treatment, and disease progression. This article will review the various bioreporter/biosensor integrations of BLI and discuss how BLI is being applied towards a new visual understanding of biological processes within the living organism.

  16. In Vivo Bioluminescent Imaging (BLI): Noninvasive Visualization and Interrogation of Biological Processes in Living Animals (United States)

    Close, Dan M.; Xu, Tingting; Sayler, Gary S.; Ripp, Steven


    In vivo bioluminescent imaging (BLI) is increasingly being utilized as a method for modern biological research. This process, which involves the noninvasive interrogation of living animals using light emitted from luciferase-expressing bioreporter cells, has been applied to study a wide range of biomolecular functions such as gene function, drug discovery and development, cellular trafficking, protein-protein interactions, and especially tumorigenesis, cancer treatment, and disease progression. This article will review the various bioreporter/biosensor integrations of BLI and discuss how BLI is being applied towards a new visual understanding of biological processes within the living organism. PMID:22346573

  17. Quantum-Inspired Maximizer (United States)

    Zak, Michail


    A report discusses an algorithm for a new kind of dynamics based on a quantum- classical hybrid-quantum-inspired maximizer. The model is represented by a modified Madelung equation in which the quantum potential is replaced by different, specially chosen 'computational' potential. As a result, the dynamics attains both quantum and classical properties: it preserves superposition and entanglement of random solutions, while allowing one to measure its state variables, using classical methods. Such optimal combination of characteristics is a perfect match for quantum-inspired computing. As an application, an algorithm for global maximum of an arbitrary integrable function is proposed. The idea of the proposed algorithm is very simple: based upon the Quantum-inspired Maximizer (QIM), introduce a positive function to be maximized as the probability density to which the solution is attracted. Then the larger value of this function will have the higher probability to appear. Special attention is paid to simulation of integer programming and NP-complete problems. It is demonstrated that the problem of global maximum of an integrable function can be found in polynomial time by using the proposed quantum- classical hybrid. The result is extended to a constrained maximum with applications to integer programming and TSP (Traveling Salesman Problem).

  18. Inspiring a generation

    CERN Multimedia


    The motto of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games is ‘Inspire a generation’ so it was particularly pleasing to see science, the LHC and Higgs bosons featuring so strongly in the opening ceremony of the Paralympics last week.   It’s a sign of just how far our field has come that such a high-profile event featured particle physics so strongly, and we can certainly add our support to that motto. If the legacy of London 2012 is a generation inspired by science as well as sport, then the games will have more than fulfilled their mission. Particle physics has truly inspiring stories to tell, going well beyond Higgs and the LHC, and the entire community has played its part in bringing the excitement of frontier research in particle physics to a wide audience. Nevertheless, we cannot rest on our laurels: maintaining the kind of enthusiasm for science we witnessed at the Paralympic opening ceremony will require constant vigilance, and creative thinking about ways to rea...

  19. Perceptually-Inspired Computing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ming Lin


    Full Text Available Human sensory systems allow individuals to see, hear, touch, and interact with the surrounding physical environment. Understanding human perception and its limit enables us to better exploit the psychophysics of human perceptual systems to design more efficient, adaptive algorithms and develop perceptually-inspired computational models. In this talk, I will survey some of recent efforts on perceptually-inspired computing with applications to crowd simulation and multimodal interaction. In particular, I will present data-driven personality modeling based on the results of user studies, example-guided physics-based sound synthesis using auditory perception, as well as perceptually-inspired simplification for multimodal interaction. These perceptually guided principles can be used to accelerating multi-modal interaction and visual computing, thereby creating more natural human-computer interaction and providing more immersive experiences. I will also present their use in interactive applications for entertainment, such as video games, computer animation, and shared social experience. I will conclude by discussing possible future research directions.

  20. Building Blocks Propagation in Quantum-Inspired Genetic Algorithm


    Nowotniak, Robert; Kucharski, Jacek


    This paper presents an analysis of building blocks propagation in Quantum-Inspired Genetic Algorithm, which belongs to a new class of metaheuristics drawing their inspiration from both biological evolution and unitary evolution of quantum systems. The expected number of quantum chromosomes matching a schema has been analyzed and a random variable corresponding to this issue has been introduced. The results have been compared with Simple Genetic Algorithm. Also, it has been presented how selec...

  1. Brushing Your Spacecrafts Teeth: A Review of Biological Reduction Processes for Planetary Protection Missions (United States)

    Pugel, D.E. (Betsy); Rummel, J. D.; Conley, C. A.


    Much like keeping your teeth clean, where you brush away biofilms that your dentist calls plaque, there are various methods to clean spaceflight hardware of biological contamination, known as biological reduction processes. Different approaches clean your hardwares teeth in different ways and with different levels of effectiveness. We know that brushing at home with a simple toothbrush is convenient and has a different level of impact vs. getting your teeth cleaned at the dentist. In the same way, there are some approaches to biological reduction that may require simple tools or more complex implementation approaches (think about sonicating or just soaking your dentures, vs. brushing them). There are also some that are more effective for different degrees of cleanliness and still some that have materials compatibility concerns. In this article, we review known and NASA-certified approaches for biological reduction, pointing out materials compatibility concerns and areas where additional research is needed.

  2. Switchable bio-inspired adhesives (United States)

    Kroner, Elmar


    Geckos have astonishing climbing abilities. They can adhere to almost any surface and can run on walls and even stick to ceilings. The extraordinary adhesion performance is caused by a combination of a complex surface pattern on their toes and the biomechanics of its movement. These biological dry adhesives have been intensely investigated during recent years because of the unique combination of adhesive properties. They provide high adhesion, allow for easy detachment, can be removed residue-free, and have self-cleaning properties. Many aspects have been successfully mimicked, leading to artificial, bio-inspired, patterned dry adhesives, and were addressed and in some aspects they even outperform the adhesion capabilities of geckos. However, designing artificial patterned adhesion systems with switchable adhesion remains a big challenge; the gecko's adhesion system is based on a complex hierarchical surface structure and on advanced biomechanics, which are both difficult to mimic. In this paper, two approaches are presented to achieve switchable adhesion. The first approach is based on a patterned polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) polymer, where adhesion can be switched on and off by applying a low and a high compressive preload. The switch in adhesion is caused by a reversible mechanical instability of the adhesive silicone structures. The second approach is based on a composite material consisting of a Nickel- Titanium (NiTi) shape memory alloy and a patterned adhesive PDMS layer. The NiTi alloy is trained to change its surface topography as a function of temperature, which results in a change of the contact area and of alignment of the adhesive pattern towards a substrate, leading to switchable adhesion. These examples show that the unique properties of bio-inspired adhesives can be greatly improved by new concepts such as mechanical instability or by the use of active materials which react to external stimuli.

  3. Whole process reclamation and utilization of wastes produced in the biological fermentation industry

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YAN Ling-jun; LI Da-peng; MA Fang; Chein-chi Chang; XU Shan-wen; QIU Shan


    Wastes yielded in the vintage process and the biological fermentation of itaconic acid and sodium gluconate of a winery in Shandong,such as grain stillage,melon lees,cornstarch protein residues,itaconic acid mother liquid,itaconic acid mycelium and sodium gluconate mycelium,were studied.Hish-activity biological protein feed,foliar fertilizer and irrigation fertilizer were generated from these wastes by applying biological/microbial technologies.Meanwhile,a whole set of technological pathways Was put forward.As a result,the optimal economical and social benefits can be obtained with low natural resource consumption and environmental costs by converting wastes into useful matters.In conclusion,through the utilization of limited resources in the whole process of reclamation and utilization of wastes,the harmony promotion Can be achieved between the economic system and the natural ecosystem.

  4. Degrading organic micropollutants: The next challenge in the evolution of biological wastewater treatment processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naresh eSinghal


    Full Text Available Global water scarcity is driving the need for identifying new water source. Wastewater could be a potential water resource if appropriate treatment technologies could be developed. One of the barriers to obtaining high quality water from wastewater arises from the presence of organic micropollutants, which are biologically active at trace levels. Removal of these compounds from wastewater by current physico-chemical technologies is prohibitively expensive. While biological treatment processes are comparatively cheap, current systems are not capable of degrading the wide range of organic micropollutants present in wastewater. As current wastewater treatment processes were developed for treating conventional pollutants present at mg/L levels, degrading the ng/L levels of micropollutants will require a different approach to system design and operation. In this paper we discuss strategies that could be employed to develop biological wastewater treatment systems capable of degrading organic micropollutants.

  5. Treatment of linear alkylbenzene sulfonate (LAS) wastewater by internal electrolysis--biological contact oxidation process. (United States)

    Cao, X Z; Li, Y M


    Surfactant wastewater is usually difficult to treat due to its toxicity and poor biodegradability. A separate physico-chemical or biochemical treatment method achieves a satisfactory effect with difficulty. In this study, treatment of the wastewater collected from a daily chemical plant by the combination processes of Fe/C internal electrolysis and biological contact oxidation was investigated. For the internal electrolysis process, the optimal conditions were: pH = 4-5, Fe/C = (10-15):1, air-water ratio = (10-20):1 and hydraulic retention time (HRT)= 2 h. For the biological contact oxidation process, the optimal conditions were: HRT = 12 h, DO = 4.0-5.0 mg/L. Treated by the above combined processes, the effluent could meet the I-grade criteria specified in Integrated Wastewater Discharge Standard of China (GB 8978-1996). The results provide valuable information for full-scale linear alkylbenzene sulfonate wastewater treatment.

  6. Agent-oriented modeling of the dynamics of complex biological processes I: single agent models

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jonker, C.M.; Treur, J.


    In the pair of papers of which this is Part I, the agent-oriented modeling perspective to cope with biological complexity is discussed. Three levels of dynamics are distinguished and related to each other: dynamics of externally observable agent behavior, dynamics of internal agent processes, and dy

  7. The image simulation arithmetic of the degradating process of porous biologic ceramic in life-form

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHEN Zuo-bing; HUANG Jian-zhong; YAN Yu-hua; LI Shi-pu


    @@ It is a complex and difficult task to simulate the degradating process of porous biologic ceramic in life-form by computer. Because the evolvement of crystal' s structure deals with not only the mechanism of many factors, such as crystallography tropism, the reciprocity of wafer, interfacial movement, but also topology geometry mechanism of dimensional padding.

  8. Diurnal rhythmicity in biological processes involved in bioavailability of functional food factors. (United States)

    Tsurusaki, Takashi; Sakakibara, Hiroyuki; Aoshima, Yoshiki; Yamazaki, Shunsuke; Sakono, Masanobu; Shimoi, Kayoko


    In the past few decades, many types of functional factors have been identified in dietary foods; for example, flavonoids are major groups widely distributed in the plant kingdom. However, the absorption rates of the functional food factors are usually low, and many of these are difficult to be absorbed in the intact forms because of metabolization by biological processes during absorption. To gain adequate beneficial effects, it is therefore mandatory to know whether functional food factors are absorbed in sufficient quantity, and then reach target organs while maintaining beneficial effects. These are the reasons why the bioavailability of functional food factors has been well investigated using rodent models. Recently, many of the biological processes have been reported to follow diurnal rhythms recurring every 24 h. Therefore, absorption and metabolism of functional food factors influenced by the biological processes may vary with time of day. Consequently, the evaluation of the bioavailability of functional food factors using rodent models should take into consideration the timing of consumption. In this review, we provide a perspective overview of the diurnal rhythm of biological processes involved in the bioavailability of functional food factors, particularly flavonoids.

  9. Modelling biological processes in WWTP; Modelado de procesos biologicos en las EDAR

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carpes, G.


    Biological technologies by active sludges are the most used in wastewater treatments. Multiple variants are affected in the characterization of this process, like wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) design, features and concentration of sludge, dissolved oxygen concentration and characteristics of the wastewater, including temperature and nutrients. Mathematical formula applied to WWTP modelling are presented to design its operation and to test the most important parameters, too. It is necessary to optimize the process in WWTP. (Author) 19 refs.

  10. Deep silicon etch for biology MEMS fabrication: review of process parameters influence versus chip design (United States)

    Magis, T.; Ballerand, S.; Bellemin Comte, A.; Pollet, Olivier


    Micro-system for biology is a growing market, especially for micro-fluidic applications (environment and health). Key part for the manufacturing of biology MEMS is the deep silicon etching by plasma to create microstructures. Usual etching process as an alternation of etching and passivation steps is a well-known method for MEMS fabrication, nowadays used in high volume production for devices like sensors and actuators. MEMS for biology applications are very different in design compared to more common micro-systems like accelerometers for instance. Indeed, their design includes on the same chip structures of very diverse size like narrow pillars, large trenches and wide cavities. This makes biology MEMS fabrication very challenging for DRIE, since each type of feature considered individually would require a specific etch process. Furthermore process parameters suited to match specifications on small size features (vertical profile, low sidewall roughness) induce issues and defects on bigger structures (undercut, micro-masking) and vice versa. Thus the process window is constrained leading to trade-offs in process development. In this paper process parameters such as source and platen powers, pressure, etching and passivation gas flows and steps duration were investigated to achieve all requirements. As well interactions between those different factors were characterized at different levels, from individual critical feature up to chip scale and to wafer scale. We will show the plasma process development and tuning to reach all these specifications. We also compared different chambers configurations of our ICP tool (source wafer distance, plasma diffusion) in order to obtain a good combination of hardware and process. With optimized etching we successfully fabricate micro-fluidic devices like micro-pumps.

  11. Chemical analysis and biological testing of materials from the EDS coal liquefaction process: a status report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Later, D.W.; Pelroy, R.A.; Wilson, B.W.


    Representative process materials were obtained from the EDS pilot plant for chemical and biological analyses. These materials were characterized for biological activity and chemical composition using a microbial mutagenicity assay and chromatographic and mass spectrometric analytical techniques. The two highest boiling distillation cuts, as well as process solvent (PS) obtained from the bottoms recycle mode operation, were tested for initiation of mouse skin tumorigenicity. All three materials were active; the crude 800/sup 0 +/F cut was substantially more potent than the crude bottoms recycle PS or 750 to 800/sup 0/F distillate cut. Results from chemical analyses showed the EDS materials, in general, to be more highly alkylated and have higher hydroaromatic content than analogous SRC II process materials (no in-line process hydrogenation) used for comparison. In the microbial mutagenicity assays the N-PAC fractions showed greater activity than did the aliphatic hydrocarbon, hydroxy-PAH, or PAH fractions, although mutagenicity was detected in certain PAH fractions by a modified version of the standard microbial mutagenicity assay. Mutagenic activities for the EDS materials were lower, overall, than those for the corresponding materials from the SRC II process. The EDS materials produced under different operational modes had distinguishable differences in both their chemical constituency and biological activity. The primary differences between the EDS materials studied here and their SRC II counterparts used for comparison are most likely attributable to the incorporation of catalytic hydrogenation in the EDS process. 27 references, 28 figures, 27 tables.

  12. #IWD2016 Academic Inspiration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Meier, Ninna


    What academics or books have inspired you in your writing and research, or helped to make sense of the world around you? In this feature essay, Ninna Meier returns to her experience of reading Hannah Arendt as she sought to understand work and how it relates to value production in capitalist...... economies. Meier recounts how Arendt’s book On Revolution (1963) forged connective threads between the ‘smallest parts’ and the ‘largest wholes’ and showed how academic work is never fully relegated to the past, but can return in new iterations across time....

  13. The development of a content-influenced process skills instrument for general biology (United States)

    White, Grady M.

    Since the mid 1960's, a major goal in biology instruction has been the teaching of process skills. Many process skills studies have been done and several process skills tests exist, but these studies and tests all target students in grades 7 through 12. The purpose of this study was to develop a biological process skills test for use in college level freshman biology classes. The study was conducted in two phases. Phase I was the development of the process skills test. Phase II of the study was to administer the test and determine student acquisition of process skills, and to determine whether any relationship existed between acquisition of process skills, student attitudes toward science, and student learning styles. Testing was implemented with a sample of 135 students enrolled in general biology in one southeastern university. The process skills test and the attitudes toward science test were administered as pretests; and posttests. The learning styles test was administered as a pretest. Data analysis included t-tests for dependent samples, multiple regression analyses, and an item analysis of the process skills test that concentrated on item difficulty, discriminating power, and distractor spread. Item analysis of the process skills test revealed some questions that were too difficult, and some questions that had problems with distractors. The majority of the test questions were found to be acceptable. The t-tests for dependent samples pies showed a significant increase in process skills mean test scores from pretest to posttest, and a significant improvement in student attitudes toward science mean test scores from pretest to posttest. The multiple regression analyses revealed no significant relationship between process skills, and student attitudes toward science, and student learning style. Recommendations include a review of the process skills test and revision of those items that are in question. The study should be continued with a larger sample size and

  14. Biological removal of methanol from process condensate for the purpose of reclamation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Yan-ming; YANG Min; ZHANG Yu; GAO Meng-chun; ZHANG Jing


    The biological removal of methanol from condensate of ammonia manufacturing processes for the purpose of reclamation using contact type reactor was studied. Methanol of 60 mg/L was removed completely under an HRT of 1.12 h. Optimal inorganic nutrient dose was determined on evaluating methanol removal performance and dehydrogenase activities (DHA) under different nutrition doses. The optimal inorganic nutrient dose only gave an increase of conductivity of ca. 10 μs/cm2 in the effluent on treating synthetic condensate containing methanol of 30 mg/L. The results demonstrated that biological removal of methanol was effective for the purpose of recovering the methanol-bearing condensate.

  15. Improving AOC degradation rate by intensified biological process in advanced water treatment

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    AN Dong; LI Wei-guang; SONG Jia-xiu; CUI Fu-yi


    The object of is to evaluate assimilable organic carbon(AOC) degradation rate by intensified biological technique in advanced water treatment. By artificially acclimating and cultivating strains attached onto carbon surface, the selected strains can be intensified for their degradation to organic matters. The research indicates that ozonation process increases AOC concentration considerably, however, it is beneficial to microdegradation. Temperature and empty bed contact time ( TEBC ) are two important factors affecting microbiology. From 14 to 27 ℃, intensified biological carbon can remove AOC better compared with granular activated carbon (GAC). Under identical TEBC, intensified technique increases more than 10% AOC reduction.

  16. A tissue-inspired amorphous photonic metamaterial

    CERN Document Server

    Bi, Dapeng


    Inspired by how cells pack in dense biological tissues, we design an amorphous material which possesses a complete photonic band gap. A physical parameter inspired by how cells adhere with one another and regulate their shapes can continuously tune the photonic band gap size as well as the bulk mechanical property of the material. The material can be further tuned to undergo a solid-fluid phase transition during which the shear modulus vanishes yet the photonic band gap persists, hence giving rise to a photonic fluid that is robust to flow and rearrangements. Experimentally this design should lead to the engineering of self-assembled non-rigid photonic structures with photonic band gaps that can be controlled in real time.

  17. New insight into the biological treatment by activated sludge: the role of adsorption process. (United States)

    Zhang, Xiaochun; Li, Xinrun; Zhang, Qingrui; Peng, Qiuming; Zhang, Wen; Gao, Faming


    The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of adsorption on the biological treatment process of wastewater. In the absence of substrate in the water, activated sludge developed well in the first hour, indicating that the growth of microorganism was not directly related to substrate concentration and the dissolved organic matter in the water assays were performed, no organic matter was detected out, revealing that there was no desorption in the activated sludge adsorption process. Activated sludge batch growth experiments in the presence of different adsorption capacities indicated that specific growth rate increased as specific adsorption capacity increased. The experiment on the relationship of adsorption capacity and substrate concentration or sludge concentration was also carried out. Specific adsorption capacity increased as sludge load increased, presenting linear correlation. The experiment results showed that adsorption should be taken into account in the study of the biological treatment process of wastewater.

  18. Microfluidic solutions enabling continuous processing and monitoring of biological samples: A review. (United States)

    Karle, Marc; Vashist, Sandeep Kumar; Zengerle, Roland; von Stetten, Felix


    The last decade has witnessed tremendous advances in employing microfluidic solutions enabling Continuous Processing and Monitoring of Biological Samples (CPMBS), which is an essential requirement for the control of bio-processes. The microfluidic systems are superior to the traditional inline sensors due to their ability to implement complex analytical procedures, such as multi-step sample preparation, and enabling the online measurement of parameters. This manuscript provides a backgound review of microfluidic approaches employing laminar flow, hydrodynamic separation, acoustophoresis, electrophoresis, dielectrophoresis, magnetophoresis and segmented flow for the continuous processing and monitoring of biological samples. The principles, advantages and limitations of each microfluidic approach are described along with its potential applications. The challenges in the field and the future directions are also provided.

  19. A comparison of form processing involved in the perception of biological and nonbiological movements (United States)

    Thurman, Steven M.; Lu, Hongjing


    Although there is evidence for specialization in the human brain for processing biological motion per se, few studies have directly examined the specialization of form processing in biological motion perception. The current study was designed to systematically compare form processing in perception of biological (human walkers) to nonbiological (rotating squares) stimuli. Dynamic form-based stimuli were constructed with conflicting form cues (position and orientation), such that the objects were perceived to be moving ambiguously in two directions at once. In Experiment 1, we used the classification image technique to examine how local form cues are integrated across space and time in a bottom-up manner. By comparing with a Bayesian observer model that embodies generic principles of form analysis (e.g., template matching) and integrates form information according to cue reliability, we found that human observers employ domain-general processes to recognize both human actions and nonbiological object movements. Experiments 2 and 3 found differential top-down effects of spatial context on perception of biological and nonbiological forms. When a background does not involve social information, observers are biased to perceive foreground object movements in the direction opposite to surrounding motion. However, when a background involves social cues, such as a crowd of similar objects, perception is biased toward the same direction as the crowd for biological walking stimuli, but not for rotating nonbiological stimuli. The model provided an accurate account of top-down modulations by adjusting the prior probabilities associated with the internal templates, demonstrating the power and flexibility of the Bayesian approach for visual form perception. PMID:26746875

  20. How chemistry supports cell biology: the chemical toolbox at your service. (United States)

    Wijdeven, Ruud H; Neefjes, Jacques; Ovaa, Huib


    Chemical biology is a young and rapidly developing scientific field. In this field, chemistry is inspired by biology to create various tools to monitor and modulate biochemical and cell biological processes. Chemical contributions such as small-molecule inhibitors and activity-based probes (ABPs) can provide new and unique insights into previously unexplored cellular processes. This review provides an overview of recent breakthroughs in chemical biology that are likely to have a significant impact on cell biology. We also discuss the application of several chemical tools in cell biology research.

  1. When science inspires art

    CERN Multimedia

    Anaïs Vernède


    On Tuesday 18 January 2011, artist Pipilotti Rist came to CERN to find out how science could provide her with a source of inspiration for her art and perhaps to get ideas for future work. Pipilotti, who is an eclectic artist always on the lookout for an original source of inspiration, is almost as passionate about physics as she is about art.   Ever Is Over All, 1997, audio video installation by Pipilotti Rist.  View of the installation at the National Museum for Foreign Art, Sofia, Bulgaria. © Pipilotti Rist. Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth. Photo by Angel Tzvetanov. Swiss video-maker Pipilotti Rist (her real name is Elisabeth Charlotte Rist), who is well-known in the international art world for her highly colourful videos and creations, visited CERN for the first time on Tuesday 18 January 2011.  Her visit represented a trip down memory lane, since she originally studied physics before becoming interested in pursuing a career as an artist and going on to de...

  2. A bio-inspired image coder with temporal scalability

    CERN Document Server

    Masmoudi, Khaled; Kornprobst, Pierre


    We present a novel bio-inspired and dynamic coding scheme for static images. Our coder aims at reproducing the main steps of the visual stimulus processing in the mammalians retina taking into account its time behavior. The main novelty of this work is to show how to exploit the time behavior of the retina cells to ensure, in a simple way, scalability and bit allocation. To do so, our main source of inspiration will be the biologically plausible retina model called Virtual Retina. Following a similar structure, our model has two stages. The first stage is an image transform which is performed by the outer layers in the retina. Here it is modelled by filtering the image with a bank of difference of Gaussians with time-delays. The second stage is a time-dependent analog-to-digital conversion which is performed by the inner layers in the retina. Thanks to its conception, our coder enables scalability and bit allocation across time. Also, compared to the JPEG standards, our decoded images do not show annoying art...

  3. Innovation inspired by nature: capabilities, potentials, and challenges (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph


    Through evolution, nature came up with many effective solutions to its challenges and continually improving them. By mimicking, coping and being inspired, humans have been using Nature's solutions to address their own challenges. In recent years, the implementation of nature's capabilities has intensified with our growing understanding of the various biological and nastic mechanisms and processes. Successes include even the making of humanlike robots that perform such lifelike tasks as walking, talking, making eye-contact, interpreting speech and facial expressions, as well as many other humanlike functions. Generally, once humans are able to implement a function then, thru rapid advances in technology, capabilities are developed that can significantly exceed the original source of inspiration in Nature. Examples include flight where there is no species that can fly as high, carry so much mass, has so large dimensions and fly so fast, and operate at as such extreme conditions as our aircraft and other aerospace systems. However, using the capabilities of today's technology, there are many challenges that are not feasible to address in mimicking characteristics of species and plants. In this manuscript, state-of-the-art of biomimetic capabilities, potentials and challenges are reviewed.

  4. Innovation Inspired by Nature: Capabilities, Potentials and Challenges (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph


    Through evolution, nature came up with many effective solutions to its challenges and continually improving them. By mimicking, coping and being inspired, humans have been using Nature's solutions to address their own challenges. In recent years, the implementation of nature's capabilities has intensified with our growing understanding of the various biological and nastic mechanisms and processes. Successes include even the making of humanlike robots that perform such lifelike tasks as walking, talking, making eye-contact, interpreting speech and facial expressions, as well as many other humanlike functions. Generally, once humans are able to implement a function then, thru rapid advances in technology, capabilities are developed that can significantly exceed the original source of inspiration in Nature. Examples include flight where there is no species that can fly as high, carry so much mass, has so large dimensions and fly so fast, and operate at as such extreme conditions as our aircraft and other aerospace systems. However, using the capabilities of today's technology, there are many challenges that are not feasible to address in mimicking characteristics of species and plants. In this manuscript, state-of-the-art of biomimetic capabilities, potentials and challenges are reviewed.

  5. [Biocenotic dynamics of liquid sewage in the process of its biological purification at aeration stations]. (United States)

    Kalina, G P; Vinogradova, L A; Gipp, E K


    A study was made of biological purification of sewage at the aeration stations on the quantitative composition of the main indicator microbes--of bacteria of the coliform group and of the fecal coliform bacilli, enterococci, Proteus, and also pathogenic enterobacteria. There was found a difference in the behaviour of different species of Proteus, i.e. reduction in the process of purification in the numbers of Pr. mirabilis, and a sharp elevation of Pr. morganii content. There was noted an insignificant amount of Pr. vulgaris both before and after the biological purification. It was found that dynamics of biocenosis was influenced by air temperature at the time of collection of the samples. A possibility of reproduction of coliform bacilli serving as one of the factors of autopurification of sewage during the biological purification was confirmed.

  6. Optimal Size for Maximal Energy Efficiency in Information Processing of Biological Systems Due to Bistability

    CERN Document Server

    Zhang, Chi; Wang, Long-Fei; Yue, Yuan; Yu, Lian-Chun


    Energy efficiency is closely related to the evolution of biological systems and is important to their information processing. In this paper, we calculated the excitation probability of a simple model of a bistable biological unit in response to pulsatile inputs, and its spontaneous excitation rate due to noise perturbation. Then we analytically calculated the mutual information, energy cost, and energy efficiency of an array of these bistable units. We found that the optimal number of units could maximize this array's energy efficiency in encoding pulse inputs, which depends on the fixed energy cost. We conclude that demand for energy efficiency in biological systems may strongly influence the size of these systems under the pressure of natural selection.

  7. Biophysics and Thermodynamics: The Scientific Building Blocks of Bio-inspired Drug Delivery Nano Systems. (United States)

    Demetzos, Costas


    Biophysics and thermodynamics are considered as the scientific milestones for investigating the properties of materials. The relationship between the changes of temperature with the biophysical variables of biomaterials is important in the process of the development of drug delivery systems. Biophysics is a challenge sector of physics and should be used complementary with the biochemistry in order to discover new and promising technological platforms (i.e., drug delivery systems) and to disclose the 'silence functionality' of bio-inspired biological and artificial membranes. Thermal analysis and biophysical approaches in pharmaceuticals present reliable and versatile tools for their characterization and for the successful development of pharmaceutical products. The metastable phases of self-assembled nanostructures such as liposomes should be taken into consideration because they represent the thermal events can affect the functionality of advanced drug delivery nano systems. In conclusion, biophysics and thermodynamics are characterized as the building blocks for design and development of bio-inspired drug delivery systems.

  8. Differential gene expression profiling and biological process analysis in proximal nerve segments after sciatic nerve transection. (United States)

    Li, Shiying; Liu, Qianqian; Wang, Yongjun; Gu, Yun; Liu, Dong; Wang, Chunming; Ding, Guohui; Chen, Jianping; Liu, Jie; Gu, Xiaosong


    After traumatic injury, peripheral nerves can spontaneously regenerate through highly sophisticated and dynamic processes that are regulated by multiple cellular elements and molecular factors. Despite evidence of morphological changes and of expression changes of a few regulatory genes, global knowledge of gene expression changes and related biological processes during peripheral nerve injury and regeneration is still lacking. Here we aimed to profile global mRNA expression changes in proximal nerve segments of adult rats after sciatic nerve transection. According to DNA microarray analysis, the huge number of genes was differentially expressed at different time points (0.5 h-14 d) post nerve transection, exhibiting multiple distinct temporal expression patterns. The expression changes of several genes were further validated by quantitative real-time RT-PCR analysis. The gene ontology enrichment analysis was performed to decipher the biological processes involving the differentially expressed genes. Collectively, our results highlighted the dynamic change of the important biological processes and the time-dependent expression of key regulatory genes after peripheral nerve injury. Interestingly, we, for the first time, reported the presence of olfactory receptors in sciatic nerves. Hopefully, this study may provide a useful platform for deeply studying peripheral nerve injury and regeneration from a molecular-level perspective.

  9. Bio-inspired algorithms applied to molecular docking simulations. (United States)

    Heberlé, G; de Azevedo, W F


    Nature as a source of inspiration has been shown to have a great beneficial impact on the development of new computational methodologies. In this scenario, analyses of the interactions between a protein target and a ligand can be simulated by biologically inspired algorithms (BIAs). These algorithms mimic biological systems to create new paradigms for computation, such as neural networks, evolutionary computing, and swarm intelligence. This review provides a description of the main concepts behind BIAs applied to molecular docking simulations. Special attention is devoted to evolutionary algorithms, guided-directed evolutionary algorithms, and Lamarckian genetic algorithms. Recent applications of these methodologies to protein targets identified in the Mycobacterium tuberculosis genome are described.

  10. Sensory processing sensitivity: a review in the light of the evolution of biological responsivity. (United States)

    Aron, Elaine N; Aron, Arthur; Jagiellowicz, Jadzia


    This article reviews the literature on sensory processing sensitivity (SPS) in light of growing evidence from evolutionary biology that many personality differences in nonhuman species involve being more or less responsive, reactive, flexible, or sensitive to the environment. After briefly defining SPS, it first discusses how biologists studying animal personality have conceptualized this general environmental sensitivity. Second, it reviews relevant previous human personality/temperament work, focusing on crossover interactions (where a trait generates positive or negative outcomes depending on the environment), and traits relevant to specific hypothesized aspects of SPS: inhibition of behavior, sensitivity to stimuli, depth of processing, and emotional/physiological reactivity. Third, it reviews support for the overall SPS model, focusing on development of the Highly Sensitive Person (HSP) Scale as a measure of SPS then on neuroimaging and genetic studies using the scale, all of which bears on the extent to which SPS in humans corresponds to biological responsivity.

  11. HRI catalytic two-stage liquefaction (CTSL) process materials: chemical analysis and biological testing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wright, C.W.; Later, D.W.


    This report presents data from the chemical analysis and biological testing of coal liquefaction materials obtained from the Hydrocarbon Research, Incorporated (HRI) catalytic two-stage liquefaction (CTSL) process. Materials from both an experimental run and a 25-day demonstration run were analyzed. Chemical methods of analysis included adsorption column chromatography, high-resolution gas chromatography, gas chromatography/mass spectrometry, low-voltage probe-inlet mass spectrometry, and proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. The biological activity was evaluated using the standard microbial mutagenicity assay and an initiation/promotion assay for mouse-skin tumorigenicity. Where applicable, the results obtained from the analyses of the CTSL materials have been compared to those obtained from the integrated and nonintegrated two-stage coal liquefaction processes. 18 refs., 26 figs., 22 tabs.

  12. Marketing the use of the space environment for the processing of biological and pharmaceutical materials (United States)


    The perceptions of U.S. biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies concerning the potential use of the space environment for the processing of biological substances was examined. Physical phenomena that may be important in space-base processing of biological materials are identified and discussed in the context of past and current experiment programs. The capabilities of NASA to support future research and development, and to engage in cooperative risk sharing programs with industry are discussed. Meetings were held with several biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies to provide data for an analysis of the attitudes and perceptions of these industries toward the use of the space environment. Recommendations are made for actions that might be taken by NASA to facilitate the marketing of the use of the space environment, and in particular the Space Shuttle, to the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries.

  13. Biological treatment of fish processing wastewater: A case study from Sfax City (Southeastern Tunisia). (United States)

    Jemli, Meryem; Karray, Fatma; Feki, Firas; Loukil, Slim; Mhiri, Najla; Aloui, Fathi; Sayadi, Sami


    The present work presents a study of the biological treatment of fish processing wastewater at salt concentration of 55 g/L. Wastewater was treated by both continuous stirred-tank reactor (CSTR) and membrane bioreactor (MBR) during 50 and 100 days, respectively. These biological processes involved salt-tolerant bacteria from natural hypersaline environments at different organic loading rates (OLRs). The phylogenetic analysis of the corresponding excised DGGE bands has demonstrated that the taxonomic affiliation of the most dominant species includes Halomonadaceae and Flavobacteriaceae families of the Proteobacteria (Gamma-proteobacteria class) and the Bacteroidetes phyla, respectively. The results of MBR were better than those of CSTR in the removal of total organic carbon with efficiencies from 97.9% to 98.6%. Nevertheless, salinity with increasing OLR aggravates fouling that requires more cleaning for a membrane in MBR while leads to deterioration of sludge settleability and effluent quality in CSTR.

  14. The B- to Z-DNA equilibrium in vivo is perturbed by biological processes.


    Zacharias, W; Jaworski, A; Larson, J E; Wells, R D


    Right-handed B and left-handed Z conformations coexist in equilibrium in portions of plasmids in Escherichia coli. The equilibria are influenced by the length of the sequences that undergo the structural transitions and are perturbed by biological processes. The composite results of three types of determinations indicate a supercoil density of -0.025 in vivo. The coexistence of alternative DNA conformations in living cells implies the potential of these structures or their transitions for imp...

  15. [Biological Role of Oligomerny Matriksny of Protein of the Cartilage in Exchange Processes Connecting Tissue]. (United States)

    Belova, Yu S


    In the review the literary data on studying of biological role of a oligomerny matriksny of protein of the cartilage in exchange processes connecting tissue at people and animals are provided, and also results of own researches on definition of a oligomerny matriksny of protein of the cartilage as a modern marker of a metabolism of an articulate cartilage at children from undifferentiated displaziy conjunctive tissue are briefly described.

  16. Degradation of aqueous methyl tert-butyl ether by photochemical, biological, and their combined processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Azadeh Asadi


    Full Text Available The degradation of aqueous methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE at relatively high concentrations was investigated by various photo-induced oxidation processes such as UV/H2O2 and UV/TiO2 as well as biological processes and their combination. It was shown that the degradation of MTBE by UV/H2O2 and TiO2 photocatalytic followed a first-order model with apparent rate constant of 1.31×10−1 and 1.21×10−2 min-1, respectively. It was observed that UV/H2O2/TiO2 process did not have any advantages over each of the other processes alone. The biodegradation of methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE was evaluated using aerobic mixed culture with three different approaches, including ultimate biological oxygen demand (BODU assessment, nonacclimated, and acclimated mixed cultures. The apparent rate constant for the biodegradation of MTBE by nonacclimated mixed culture was 4.36×10−2 day-1. It was shown that the acclimatization of the mixed cultures enhanced the rate of biodegradation of MTBE to 3.24×10−1mg L-1h-1. Finally, the effects of the photocatalytic pretreatment of aqueous MTBE on its subsequent biological treatment were studied. It was observed that the rate of bioreaction was not enhanced and the photocatalytic pretreatment had adverse effects on its biological treatment so that the apparent rate constant decreased to 2.83×10−1 mg L-1h-1.

  17. In Vivo Bioluminescent Imaging (BLI): Noninvasive Visualization and Interrogation of Biological Processes in Living Animals


    Steven Ripp; Sayler, Gary S.; Tingting Xu; Close, Dan M.


    In vivo bioluminescent imaging (BLI) is increasingly being utilized as a method for modern biological research. This process, which involves the noninvasive interrogation of living animals using light emitted from luciferase-expressing bioreporter cells, has been applied to study a wide range of biomolecular functions such as gene function, drug discovery and development, cellular trafficking, protein-protein interactions, and especially tumorigenesis, cancer treatment, and disease progressio...

  18. Application of 19F MRI for in vivo detection of biological processes


    Basse-Lüsebrink, Thomas Christian


    This thesis focuses on various aspects and techniques of 19F magnetic resonance (MR). The first chapters provide an overview of the basic physical properties, 19F MR and MR sequences related to this work. Chapter 5 focuses on the application of 19F MR to visualize biological processes in vivo using two different animal models. The dissimilar models underlined the wide applicability of 19F MR in preclinical research. A subsection of Chapter 6 shows the application of compressed sensing (CS) to...

  19. Reduction of Biological Sludge Production Applying an Alternating Oxic/anoxic Process in Water Line. (United States)

    Eusebi, Anna Laura; Panigutti, Maximiliano; Battistoni, Paolo


    Alternating oxic/anoxic process, applied for the main objective of the improvement of nitrogen performances, was studied in terms of secondary effect of biomass reduction. The process was carried out in one real water resource recovery facility and the data were compared with the previous conventional period when a conventional process was adopted. The main mechanism of the process for the sludge minimization is recognized in the metabolic uncoupling. In fact, an increase of the specific oxygen uptake rate in the biological reactor was recorded stimulated by the change of the oxidation reduction potential environment. Moreover, the heterotrophic growth yield was measured equal to 0.385 kgVSS/kgCOD. The global percentage of reduction was tested with the mass balance of solids. The process is able to decrease the observed sludge yield up to 20%. The specific energy consumption was evaluated.

  20. Theosophically Inspired Movements in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dybdal, René


    The theosophical movement has had a significant influence on the esoteric milieu in Denmark during the 20th Century. In this paper the inspiration on other Groups in Denmark is explored.......The theosophical movement has had a significant influence on the esoteric milieu in Denmark during the 20th Century. In this paper the inspiration on other Groups in Denmark is explored....

  1. Determination of Biological Treatability Processes of Textile Wastewater and Implementation of a Fuzzy Logic Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Harun Akif Kabuk


    Full Text Available This study investigated the biological treatability of textile wastewater. For this purpose, a membrane bioreactor (MBR was utilized for biological treatment after the ozonation process. Due to the refractory organic contents of textile wastewater that has a low biodegradability capacity, ozonation was implemented as an advanced oxidation process prior to the MBR system to increase the biodegradability of the wastewater. Textile wastewater, oxidized by ozonation, was fed to the MBR at different hydraulic retention times (HRT. During the process, color, chemical oxygen demand (COD, and biochemical oxygen demand (BOD removal efficiencies were monitored for 24-hour, 12-hour, 6-hour, and 3-hour retention times. Under these conditions, 94% color, 65% COD, and 55% BOD removal efficiencies were obtained in the MBR system. The experimental outputs were modeled with multiple linear regressions (MLR and fuzzy logic. MLR results suggested that color removal is more related to COD removal relative to BOD removal. A surface map of this issue was prepared with a fuzzy logic model. Furthermore, fuzzy logic was employed to the whole modeling of the biological system treatment. Determination coefficients for COD, BOD, and color removal efficiencies were 0.96, 0.97, and 0.92, respectively.

  2. Biological processes in the water column of the South Atlantic Bight: Phytoplankton response. Final progress report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Verity, P.G.; Yoder, J.A.


    This study addressed shelf-wide processes and nearshore (coastal boundary zone) processes occurring in the southeastern. Coastal boundary zone (CBZ) US continental shelf dynamics involve studies of circulation and of biological and chemical transformations. Continental shelf processes affect the removal of material from the coastal boundary zone into areas where the material no longer interacts with or influences concentrations in the CBZ. The two arbitrarily separate components are, in fact, unified. The CBZ typically extends about 300 km along-shore and about 20 km offshore from its center off Savannah, Georgia, where most runoff occurs. The rates of biological and chemical transformations are controlled by proximity to the bottom and the amounts of fine suspended organic matter originating from rivers and salt marshes. Once material is removed from this zone, either by a long-shelf or cross-shelf advection to regions where the materials are no longer in contact with the bottom, the suite of factors governing the rates of chemical and biological transformations changes. The determination of contrasting rates in these two environments was one of the central focuses of the South Atlantic Bight program.

  3. Reclaimation of petroleum-based wastewater by noval ozone immobilized biological activated carbon process

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Wastewater reclamation in the petroleum industries in Northern China is important because of the shortage of water resource. Conventional treatment technology used in treating petroleum-based wastewater,namely the 3-phase biological process, typically removes COD, BOD, grease, volatile hydrobenzenes, cyanides, sulfides and suspended solids. However, the process is often ineffective in ammonia-nitrogen removal,and thus the treated effluent quantity can't meet the required standards for reuse. This paper investigated a novel ozone immobilized biological activated carbon (O3-IBAC) process for ammonia nitrogen removal from petroleum-based wastewater. Operated at a HRT (Hydraulic Retention Time) of 15 minutes in IBAC1 and 27 minutes in IBAC2, the O3-IBAC process achieved ammonia nitrogen removal efficiency of 91%. In addition, the removal efficiencies of COD, volatile hydrobenzenes, suspended solids, turbidity and petroleum-based micropollutants were all above 90%. Competition between the autotrophs and heterotrophs was observed, which was indicated by an increase of ammonia nitrogen removal with a decrease of COD removal, and vise versa. Nitrite accumulation in IBAC1 followed by erobic shortcut denitrification in IBAC2 led to 28% of the Total Nitrogen removal efficiency. Pollutant reduction in the IBAC process was achieved by a rapid physical adsorption and biodegradation on the activated carbon, which effectively retained the pollutants in the system despite the short hydraulic retention time.

  4. [Analysis of novel style biological fluidized bed A/O combined process in dyeing wastewater treatment]. (United States)

    Wei, Chao-Hai; Huang, Hui-Jing; Ren, Yuan; Wu, Chao-Fei; Wu, Hai-Zhen; Lu, Bin


    A novel biological fluidized bed was designed and developed to deal with high-concentration refractory organic industrial wastewater. From 12 successful projects, three cases of dyeing wastewater treatment projects with the scale of 1200, 2000 and 13000 m3/d respectively were selected to analyze the principle of treating refractory organic wastewater with fluidized bed technology and discuss the superiority of self-developed biological fluidized bed from the aspects of technical and economic feasibility. In the three cases, when the hydraulic retention time (HRT) of biological system were 23, 34 and 21. 8 h, and the volume loading of influents (COD) were 1.75, 4.75 and 2.97 kg/(m3 x d), the corresponding COD removal were 97.3%, 98.1% and 95.8%. Furthermore the operating costs of projects were 0.91, 1.17 and 0.88 yuan per ton of water respectively. The index of effluent all met the 1st grade of Guangdong Province wastewater discharge standard. Results showed that the biological fluidized bed had characteristics of shorter retention time, greater oxygen utilization rate, faster conversion rate of organic pollutants and less sludge production, which made it overcome the shortcomings of traditional methods in printing and dyeing wastewater treatment. Considering the development of technology and the combination of ecological security and recycling resources, a low-carbon wastewater treatment process was proposed.

  5. Nature Inspired Hay Fever Therapy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Andrei P.Sommer; Dan Zhu


    The survival oriented adaptation of evolved biosystems to variations in their environment is a selective optimization process. Recognizing the optimised end product and its functionality is the classical arena of bionic engineering. In a primordial world, however, the molecular organization and functions of prebiotic systems were solely defined by formative processes in their physical and chemical environment, for instance, the interplay between interracial water layers on surfaces and solar light. The formative potential of the interplay between light (laser light) and interfacial water layers on surfaces was recently exploited in the formation of supercubane carbon nanocrystals. In evolved biosystems the formative potential of interracial water layers can still be activated by light. Here we report a case of hay fever, which was successfully treated in the course of a facial reju-venation program starting in November 2007. Targeting primarily interfacial water layers on elastin fibres in the wrinkled areas, we presumably also activated mast cells in the nasal mucosa, reported to progressively decrease in the nasal mucosa of the rabbit, when frequently irradiated. Hay fever is induced by the release of mediators, especially histamine, a process associated with the degranulation of mast cells. Decrease in mast cells numbers implies a decrease in the release of histamine. To the best of our knowledge this is the first report on the treatment of hay fever with visible light. This approach was inspired by bionic thinking, and could help ameliorating the condition of millions of people suffering from hay fever world wide.

  6. Mind the gap: non-biological processes contributing to soil CO2 efflux. (United States)

    Rey, Ana


    Widespread recognition of the importance of soil CO2 efflux as a major source of CO2 to the atmosphere has led to active research. A large soil respiration database and recent reviews have compiled data, methods, and current challenges. This study highlights some deficiencies for a proper understanding of soil CO2 efflux focusing on processes of soil CO2 production and transport that have not received enough attention in the current soil respiration literature. It has mostly been assumed that soil CO2 efflux is the result of biological processes (i.e. soil respiration), but recent studies demonstrate that pedochemical and geological processes, such as geothermal and volcanic CO2 degassing, are potentially important in some areas. Besides the microbial decomposition of litter, solar radiation is responsible for photodegradation or photochemical degradation of litter. Diffusion is considered to be the main mechanism of CO2 transport in the soil, but changes in atmospheric pressure and thermal convection may also be important mechanisms driving soil CO2 efflux greater than diffusion under certain conditions. Lateral fluxes of carbon as dissolved organic and inorganic carbon occur and may cause an underestimation of soil CO2 efflux. Traditionally soil CO2 efflux has been measured with accumulation chambers assuming that the main transport mechanism is diffusion. New techniques are available such as improved automated chambers, CO2 concentration profiles and isotopic techniques that may help to elucidate the sources of carbon from soils. We need to develop specific and standardized methods for different CO2 sources to quantify this flux on a global scale. Biogeochemical models should include biological and non-biological CO2 production processes before we can predict the response of soil CO2 efflux to climate change. Improving our understanding of the processes involved in soil CO2 efflux should be a research priority given the importance of this flux in the global

  7. Prospects for energy recovery during hydrothermal and biological processing of waste biomass. (United States)

    Gerber Van Doren, Léda; Posmanik, Roy; Bicalho, Felipe A; Tester, Jefferson W; Sills, Deborah L


    Thermochemical and biological processes represent promising technologies for converting wet biomasses, such as animal manure, organic waste, or algae, to energy. To convert biomass to energy and bio-chemicals in an economical manner, internal energy recovery should be maximized to reduce the use of external heat and power. In this study, two conversion pathways that couple hydrothermal liquefaction with anaerobic digestion or catalytic hydrothermal gasification were compared. Each of these platforms is followed by two alternative processes for gas utilization: 1) combined heat and power; and 2) combustion in a boiler. Pinch analysis was applied to integrate thermal streams among unit processes and improve the overall system efficiency. A techno-economic analysis was conducted to compare the feasibility of the four modeled scenarios under different market conditions. Our results show that a systems approach designed to recover internal heat and power can reduce external energy demands and increase the overall process sustainability.

  8. Open Markov processes: A compositional perspective on non-equilibrium steady states in biology

    CERN Document Server

    Pollard, Blake S


    In recent work, Baez, Fong and the author introduced a framework for describing Markov processes equipped with a detailed balanced equilibrium as open systems of a certain type. These `open Markov processes' serve as the building blocks for more complicated processes. In this paper, we describe the potential application of this framework in the modeling of biological systems as open systems maintained away from equilibrium. We show that non-equilibrium steady states emerge in open systems of this type, even when the rates of the underlying process are such that a detailed balanced equilibrium is permitted. It is shown that these non-equilibrium steady states minimize a quadratic form which we call `dissipation.' In some circumstances, the dissipation is approximately equal to the rate of change of relative entropy plus a correction term. On the other hand, Prigogine's principle of minimum entropy production generally fails for non-equilibrium steady states. We use a simple model of membrane transport to illus...

  9. Survey of biological processes for odor reduction; Kartlaeggning och studie av biologiska processer foer luktreduktion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arrhenius, Karine; Rosell, Lars [SP Technical Research Inst. of Sweden, Boraas (Sweden); Hall, Gunnar [SIK Swedish Inst. for Food and Biotechnology, Gothenburg (Sweden)


    This project aims to characterize chemical and subsequently odor emissions from a digester plant located closed to Boraas in Sweden (Boraas Energi och Miljoe AB). The digestion produces mainly 2 by-products, biogas and high quality organic biofertilizer. Biogas is a renewable source of electrical and heat energy and subsequently digester have a promising future. Unfortunately, release of unpleasant odours is one of the problems that may limit development of the technique as odours strongly influence the level of acceptance of the neighbours. The number of complaints due to odours depends mostly, upon the degree of odour release, the weather condition and plant environment (which influence the risks for spreading out), and the tolerance of the neighbours. These parameters are strongly variable. Many processes inside the plant distributed on a large surface may contribute to odour release. Chemical emissions were studied, in this project, by extensive sampling inside the plant. Results were then evaluated regarding risk for odour releases. The goal was to suggest controls and routines to limit releases. The conditions leading to the higher risks for odour emissions were studied by performing sampling at different periods of the year and subsequently different weather conditions. At first, places for measurement were chosen together with personal of the plant. Three zones are considered to mainly contribute to the odour emissions: the landfill region, the cisterns region and the leaching lake region. Totally 13 places were studied with regard to odour and chemical emissions under 2008-2009 at different weather conditions. Some results from a previous project (2007) are also presented here. Results show that the spreading out of can be maintained to an acceptable level as long as the plant is functioning without disturbances. The early stages of the treatment of waste should be confined in locals with closed doors to avoid spreading out of odours. Through controlled

  10. Development of new smart materials and spinning systems inspired by natural silks and their applications (United States)

    Cheng, Jie; Lee, Sang-Hoon


    Silks produced by spiders and silkworms are charming natural biological materials with highly optimized hierarchical structures and outstanding physicomechanical properties. The superior performance of silks relies on the integration of a unique protein sequence, a distinctive spinning process, and complex hierarchical structures. Silks have been prepared to form a variety of morphologies and are widely used in diverse applications, for example, in the textile industry, as drug delivery vehicles, and as tissue engineering scaffolds. This review presents an overview of the organization of natural silks, in which chemical and physical functions are optimized, as well as a range of new materials inspired by the desire to mimic natural silk structure and synthesis.

  11. Removal of disinfection by-products formation potential by biologically intensified process

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    AN Dong; LI Wei-guang; CUI Fu-yi; HE Xin; ZHANG Jin-song


    The removal of disinfection by-products formation potential(DBPFP) in artificially intensified biological activated carbon(IBAC) process which is developed on the basis of traditional ozone granular activated carbon was evaluated. By IBAC removals of 31% and 68% for THMFP and HAAFP were obtained respectively. Under identical conditions, the removals of the same substances were 4% and 32% respectively only by the granular activated carbon(GAC) process. Compared with GAC, the high removal rates of the two formed potential substances were due to the increasing of bioactivity of the media and the synergistic capabilities of biological degradation cooperating with activated carbon adsorption of organic compounds. A clear linear correlation ( R2 = 0.9562 and R2 = 0.9007) between DOC HAAFP removal rate and Empty Bed Contact Time(EBCT) of IBAC process was observed, while that between THMFP removal rate and EBCT of GAC was R2 = 0.9782. In addition certain linear correlations between THMFP, HAAFP and UV254 ( R2 = 0.855 and R2 = 0.7702) were found for the treated water. For IBAC process there are also more advantages such as long backwashing cycle time, low backwashing intensity and prolonging activated carbon lifetime and so on.

  12. State of the art of biological processes for coal gasification wastewater treatment. (United States)

    Zhao, Qian; Liu, Yu


    The treatment of coal gasification wastewater (CGW) poses a serious challenge on the sustainable development of the global coal industry. The CGW contains a broad spectrum of high-strength recalcitrant substances, including phenolic, monocyclic and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, heterocyclic nitrogenous compounds and long chain aliphatic hydrocarbon. So far, biological treatment of CGW has been considered as an environment-friendly and cost-effective method compared to physiochemical approaches. Thus, this reviews aims to provide a comprehensive picture of state of the art of biological processes for treating CGW wastewater, while the possible biodegradation mechanisms of toxic and refractory organic substances were also elaborated together with microbial community involved. Discussion was further extended to advanced bioprocesses to tackle high-concentration ammonia and possible options towards in-plant zero liquid discharge.

  13. Combining Bio-inspired Sensing with Bio-inspired Locomotion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shaikh, Danish; Hallam, John; Christensen-Dalsgaard, Jakob

    In this paper we present a preliminary Braitenberg vehicle–like approach to combine bio-inspired audition with bio-inspired quadruped locomotion in simulation. Locomotion gaits of the salamander–like robot Salamandra robotica are modified by a lizard’s peripheral auditory system model that modula......In this paper we present a preliminary Braitenberg vehicle–like approach to combine bio-inspired audition with bio-inspired quadruped locomotion in simulation. Locomotion gaits of the salamander–like robot Salamandra robotica are modified by a lizard’s peripheral auditory system model...... that modulates the parameters of the locomotor central pattern generators. We present phonotactic performance results of the simulated lizard-salamander hybrid robot....

  14. Holography inspired stringy hadrons (United States)

    Sonnenschein, Jacob


    Holography inspired stringy hadrons (HISH) is a set of models that describe hadrons: mesons, baryons and glueballs as strings in flat four dimensional space-time. The models are based on a "map" from stringy hadrons of holographic confining backgrounds. In this note we review the "derivation" of the models. We start with a brief reminder of the passage from the AdS5 ×S5 string theory to certain flavored confining holographic models. We then describe the string configurations in holographic backgrounds that correspond to a Wilson line, a meson, a baryon and a glueball. The key ingredients of the four dimensional picture of hadrons are the "string endpoint mass" and the "baryonic string vertex". We determine the classical trajectories of the HISH. We review the current understanding of the quantization of the hadronic strings. We end with a summary of the comparison of the outcome of the HISH models with the PDG data about mesons and baryons. We extract the values of the tension, masses and intercepts from best fits, write down certain predictions for higher excited hadrons and present attempts to identify glueballs.

  15. [Medicine inspired by poverty]. (United States)

    Barnard, H


    Since his arrival in Egypt in 1994 the author joined a number of archaeological expeditions as a surveyor and part-time physician. During this latter activity he came into contact with the beliefs and practices of the local workmen and those of the Ababda Bedouin in particular. Living a harsh life in the southern part of the Egyptian Eastern Desert, their medicine seems to be inspired by poverty. Widely used for all internal disorders are 'kaya bil-naar': oval scars made with red-hot metal instruments. Another, less common, form of scarification is 'mi'ah-hed'asher', three parallel lines carved deeply into the cheek of the patient. 'Muhawy' is the bite of a snake into the earlobe of the patient, to prevent snake-bites. Another prophylactic is the 'higab', a small leather pouch containing a magical object or text. Therapies for less serious disorders include the use of herbs, spices and foodstuffs, often prepared in special ways. Externally, car fuel and axle grease are widely used. With the development of the Red Sea coast for tourism, the life of the Ababda Bedouin will change fundamentally. The above practices are likely to be replaced by Western medicine, probably a change for the better for these people.

  16. Inspiration, anyone? (Editorial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lindsay Glynn


    Full Text Available I have to admit that writing an editorial for this issue was a struggle. Trying to sit down and write when the sun was shining outside and most of my colleagues were on vacation was, to say the least, difficult. Add to that research projects and conferences…let’s just say that I found myself less than inspired. A pitiful plea for ideas to a colleague resulted in the reintroduction to a few recent evidence based papers and resources which inspired further searching and reading. Though I generally find myself surrounded (more like buried in research papers and EBLIP literature, somehow I had missed the great strides that have been made of late in the world of evidence based library and information practice. I realize now that I am inspired by the researchers, authors and innovators who are putting EBLIP on the proverbial map. My biggest beef with library literature in general has been the plethora of articles highlighting what we should be doing. Take a close look at the evidence based practitioners in the information professions: these are some of the people who are actively practicing what has been preached for the past few years. Take, for example, the about‐to‐be released Libraries using Evidence Toolkit by Northern Sydney Central Coast Health and The University of Newcastle, Australia (see their announcement in this issue. An impressive advisory group is responsible for maintaining the currency and relevancy of the site as well as promoting the site and acting as a steering committee for related projects. This group is certainly doing more than “talking the talk”: they took their experience at the 3rd International Evidence Based Librarianship Conference and did something with the information they obtained by implementing solutions that worked in their environment. The result? The creation of a collection of tools for all of us to use. This toolkit is just what EBLIP needs: a portal to resources aimed at supporting the information

  17. Inspired by CERN

    CERN Multimedia


    Art students inspired by CERN will be returning to show their work 9 to 16 October in Building 500, outside the Auditorium. Seventeen art students from around Europe visited CERN last January for a week of introductions to particle physics and astrophysics, and discussions with CERN scientists about their projects. A CERN scientist "adopted"each artist so they could ask questions during and after the visit. Now the seeds planted during their visit have come to fruition in a show using many media and exploring varied concepts, such as how people experience the online world, the sheer scale of CERN's equipment, and the abstractness of the entities scientists are looking for. "The work is so varied, people are going to love some pieces and detest others," says Andrew Charalambous, the project coordinator from University College London who is also curating the exhibition. "It's contemporary modern art, and that's sometimes difficult to take in." For more information on this thought-provoking show, see: htt...

  18. BioMAV: bio-inspired intelligence for autonomous flight

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gerke, P.K.; Langevoort, J.; Lagarde, S.; Bax, L.; Grootswagers, T.; Drenth, R.-J.; Slieker, V.; Vuurpijl, L.; Haselager, P.; Sprinkhuizen-Kuyper, I.; Van Otterlo, M.; De Croon, G.C.H.E.


    This paper aims to contribute to research on biologically inspired micro air vehicles in two ways: (i) it explores a novel repertoire of behavioral modules which can be controlled through finite state machines (FSM) and (ii) elementary movement detectors (EMD) are combined with a center/surround edge

  19. BioMAV: bio-inspired intelligence for autonomous flight

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gerke, P.K.; Langevoort, J.E.; Lagarde, S.; Bax, L.; Grootswagers, T.; Drenth, R.; Slieker, V.M.; Vuurpijl, L.G.; Haselager, W.F.G.; Sprinkhuizen-Kuyper, I.G.; Otterlo, M. van; Croon, G.C.H.E. de


    This paper aims to contribute to research on biologically inspired micro air vehicles in two ways: (i) it explores a novel repertoire of behavioral modules which can be controlled through finite state machines (FSM) and (ii) elementary movement detectors (EMD) are combined with a center/ surround ed

  20. Intended process water management concept for the mechanical biological treatment of municipal solid waste

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    D. Weichgrebe; S. Maerker; T. Boning; H. Stegemann


    Accumulating operational experience in both aerobic and anaerobic mechanical biological waste treatment (MBT) makes it increasingly obvious that controlled water management would substantially reduce the cost of MBT and also enhance resource recovery of the organic and inorganic fraction. The MBT plant at Gescher, Germany, is used as an example in order to determine the quantity and composition of process water and leachates from intensive and subsequent rotting, pressing water from anaerobic digestion and scrubber water from acid exhaust air treatment, and hence prepare an MBT water balance. The potential of, requirements for and limits to internal process water reuse as well as the possibilities of resource recovery from scrubber water are also examined. Finally, an assimilated process water management concept with the purpose of an extensive reduction of wastewater quantity and freshwater demand is presented.

  1. The effect of electrostatic microencapsulation process on biological properties of tumour cells. (United States)

    Li, Nan; Xu, Xiao-Xi; Sun, Guang-Wei; Guo, Xin; Liu, Yang; Wang, Shu-Jun; Zhang, Ying; Yu, Wei-Ting; Wang, Wei; Ma, Xiao-Jun


    Microencapsulation is one of the promising strategies to develop a three-dimensional in vivo tumour-mimic model in cancer research. Although previous studies have shown that tumour cells grow well during the microencapsulated culture, it is still not clear whether the electrostatic encapsulation process has an important effect on cellular characteristics. In this study, we investigated cellular response against non-physiological stress factors existing in the electrostatic microencapsulation process, such as the high-voltage electrostatic field, suspension and nutrition-free status. Our results showed that these non-physiological stress factors did not significantly induce cellular apoptosis, and did not affect cellular adhesion and viability. Furthermore, no change was found about invasion and drug resistance of the tumour cells. The normal endoplasmic reticulum function might play a role in maintaining biological properties during the electrostatic microencapsulation process.

  2. Treatment of Slightly Polluted Wastewater in an Oil Refinery Using a Biological Aerated Filter Process

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XIE Wenyu; ZHONG Li; CHEN Jianjun


    The slightly polluted wastewater from oil refinery contains some COD, oil pollutants and suspended solids (SS). A small-scale fixed film biological aerated filter (BAF) process was used to treat the wastewater. The influences of hydraulic retention time (HRT), air/water volume flow ratio and backwashing cycle on treatment efficiencies were investigated. The wastewater was treated by the BAF process under optimal conditions: the HRT of backwashing cycle of every 4-7 days. The results showed that the average removal efficiency of COD, oil pollutants and SS was 84.5%, 94.0% and 83.4%, respectively. And the average effluent concentration of COD, oil pollutants and SS was 12.5, 0.27, 14.5the BAF process is a suitable and highly efficient method to treat the wastewater.

  3. Demonstrating Compliance with Stringent Nitrogen Limits Using a Biological Nutrient Removal Process in California's Central Valley. (United States)

    Merlo, Rion; Witzgall, Bob; Yu, William; Ohlinger, Kurt; Ramberg, Steve; De Las Casas, Carla; Henneman, Seppi; Parker, Denny


    The Sacramento Regional County Sanitation District (District) must be compliant with stringent nitrogen limits by 2021 that the existing treatment facilities cannot meet. An 11-month pilot study was conducted to confirm that these limits could be met with an air activated sludge biological nutrient removal (BNR) process. The pilot BNR treated an average flow of 946 m(3)/d and demonstrated that it could reliably meet the ammonia limit, but that external carbon addition may be necessary to satisfy the nitrate limit. The BNR process performed well throughout the 11 months of operation with good settleability, minimal nocardioform content, and high quality secondary effluent. The BNR process was operated at a minimum pH of 6.4 with no noticeable impact to nitrification rates. Increased secondary sludge production was observed during rainfall events and is attributed to a change in wastewater influent characteristics.

  4. Removal of hydrogen sulfide from gas streams using biological processes : a review

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Syed, M.; Soreanu, G.; Falletta, P.; Beland, M. [Environment Canada, Burlington, ON (Canada). Wastewater Technology Centre


    Hydrogen sulfide (H{sub 2}S) is produced by the anaerobic digestion of biosolids and other organic materials, and can be corrosive to internal combustion engines. This study investigated biological H{sub 2}S removal processes with the aim of overcoming the chemical and disposal costs associated with existing chemically-based removal processes. Current biological H{sub 2}S removal processes were reviewed, and research needs for potential process improvements were identified. Processes included photoautotrophs; chemotrophs; bioreactors for H{sub 2}S removal involving phototrophic bacteria; continuous-flow reactors; phototube reactors; gas-fed batch reactors; bioscrubbers; biofilters; and biotrickling filters. Results of the review suggested that the preferred treatment method for H{sub 2}S gas containing streams depended on the source of the gas. In the case of H{sub 2}S in biogas, anaerobic methods involving phototrophic bacteria provided the inherent advantage of maintaining the anaerobic nature of the gas. Cholorobium limicola was recommended as a desirable bacterium due to its growth using inorganic substrates, its efficiency at converting sulfide to elemental sulfur, and its extracellular production of elemental sulfur. Fixed-film reactors had the greatest potential for cost-effective sulfide conversion. It was noted that light supply is one of the key cost components in the process and poses a major constraint. It was concluded that future research should focus on the development and use of energy efficient LEDs and the proper use of sunlight and reflectors to minimize the electrical energy use. 73 refs., 5 tabs., 5 figs.

  5. Combination of Advanced Oxidation Processes and biological treatments for wastewater decontamination-A review

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oller, I., E-mail: [Plataforma Solar de Almeria (CIEMAT), Carretera Senes, Km 4. 04200 Tabernas (Almeria) (Spain); Malato, S. [Plataforma Solar de Almeria (CIEMAT), Carretera Senes, Km 4. 04200 Tabernas (Almeria) (Spain); Sanchez-Perez, J.A. [Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Almeria, Crta de Sacramento s/n, 04120 Almeria (Spain)


    Nowadays there is a continuously increasing worldwide concern for development of alternative water reuse technologies, mainly focused on agriculture and industry. In this context, Advanced Oxidation Processes (AOPs) are considered a highly competitive water treatment technology for the removal of those organic pollutants not treatable by conventional techniques due to their high chemical stability and/or low biodegradability. Although chemical oxidation for complete mineralization is usually expensive, its combination with a biological treatment is widely reported to reduce operating costs. This paper reviews recent research combining AOPs (as a pre-treatment or post-treatment stage) and bioremediation technologies for the decontamination of a wide range of synthetic and real industrial wastewater. Special emphasis is also placed on recent studies and large-scale combination schemes developed in Mediterranean countries for non-biodegradable wastewater treatment and reuse. The main conclusions arrived at from the overall assessment of the literature are that more work needs to be done on degradation kinetics and reactor modeling of the combined process, and also dynamics of the initial attack on primary contaminants and intermediate species generation. Furthermore, better economic models must be developed to estimate how the cost of this combined process varies with specific industrial wastewater characteristics, the overall decontamination efficiency and the relative cost of the AOP versus biological treatment.

  6. A coupled advanced oxidation-biological process for recycling industrial wastewater containing persistent organic contaminants (CADOX)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Malato, S.; Blanco, J.; Maldonado, M.I.; Alarcon, D.C.; Fernandez, P.; Oller, I.; Gernjak, W. [Platforma Solar de Almeria, CIEMAT (Spain)


    This article concentrates on coupled processes to treat seven highly water-soluble pesticides and three non-biodegradable chlorinated solvents. These are considered priority substances by the European Union and are thus the focus of some attention. The coupled processes include three oxidation processes: photocatalysis by titanium dioxide, photo-Fenton, and ozone; as well as biological degradation. The article reports on work in progress. The full project will include building two small prototypes embodying these technologies, the construction of a demonstration treatment plant based on the results obtained from the prototypes, conceptual design of a full size plant. New solar collectors were built to facilitate the photocatalysis and photo-Fenton. To date it has been determined that the photo-catalysis and photo-Fenton are suitable if the concentrations of the above contaminants is high enough. Ozone can enhance the treatment in the case of the pesticides, but not in the case of the non-biodegradable chlorinated solvents. Biotreatment is also not suitable for the solvents. The best biological system has been determined and the optimal recovery of catalyst has also been found. 5 refs., 2 tabs., 4 figs.

  7. Current good manufacturing practice in plant automation of biological production processes. (United States)

    Dorresteijn, R C; Wieten, G; van Santen, P T; Philippi, M C; de Gooijer, C D; Tramper, J; Beuvery, E C


    The production of biologicals is subject to strict governmental regulations. These are drawn up in current good manufacturing practices (cGMP), a.o. by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. To implement cGMP in a production facility, plant automation becomes an essential tool. For this purpose Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES) have been developed that control all operations inside a production facility. The introduction of these recipe-driven control systems that follow ISA S88 standards for batch processes has made it possible to implement cGMP regulations in the control strategy of biological production processes. Next to this, an MES offers additional features such as stock management, planning and routing tools, process-dependent control, implementation of software sensors and predictive models, application of historical data and on-line statistical techniques for trend analysis and detection of instrumentation failures. This paper focuses on the development of new production strategies in which cGMP guidelines are an essential part.

  8. Potential biological hazard of importance for HACCP plans in fresh fish processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Baltić Milan Ž.


    Full Text Available The Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP system is scientifically based and focused on problem prevention in order to assure the produced food products are safe to consume. Prerequisite programs such as GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices, GHP (Good Hygienic Practices are an essential foundation for the development and implementation of successful HACCP plans. One of the preliminary tasks in the development of HACCP plan is to conduct a hazard analysis. The process of conducting a hazard analysis involves two stages. The first is hazard identification and the second stage is the HACCP team decision which potential hazards must be addressed in the HACCP plan. By definition, the HACCP concept covers all types of potential food safety hazards: biological, chemical and physical, whether they are naturally occurring in the food, contributed by the environment or generated by a mistake in the manufacturing process. In raw fish processing, potential significant biological hazards which are reasonably likely to cause illness of humans are parasites (Trematodae, Nematodae, Cestodae, bacteria (Salmonella, E. coli, Vibrio parahemolyticus, Vibrio vulnificus, Listeria monocytogenes, Clostridium botulinum, Staphyloccocus aureus, viruses (Norwalk virus, Entero virusesi, Hepatitis A, Rotovirus and bio-toxins. Upon completion of hazard analysis, any measure(s that are used to control the hazard(s should be described.

  9. Physicochemical and porosity characteristics of thermally regenerated activated carbon polluted with biological activated carbon process. (United States)

    Dong, Lihua; Liu, Wenjun; Jiang, Renfu; Wang, Zhansheng


    The characteristics of thermally regenerated activated carbon (AC) polluted with biological activated carbon (BAC) process were investigated. The results showed that the true micropore and sub-micropore volume, pH value, bulk density, and hardness of regenerated AC decreased compared to the virgin AC, but the total pore volume increased. XPS analysis displayed that the ash contents of Al, Si, and Ca in the regenerated AC respectively increased by 3.83%, 2.62% and 1.8%. FTIR spectrum showed that the surface functional groups of virgin and regenerated AC did not change significantly. Pore size distributions indicated that the AC regeneration process resulted in the decrease of micropore and macropore (D>10 μm) volume and the increase of mesopore and macropore (0.1 μmbiological waste (spent AC) from BAC process.

  10. Coal cinder filtration as pretreatment with biological processes to treat pharmaceutical wastewater. (United States)

    Zheng, Wei; Li, Xiao-ming; Hao, Zhi-ming; Wang, Dong-bo; Yang, Qi; Zeng, Guang-ming


    This study aims at coupling coal cinder filter with biological process to improve pharmaceutical wastewater quality and reduce the disposal cost. In the coal cinder filter, the removal efficiencies of COD, BOD(5), SS and color were 90+/-2%, 72+/-2%, 95+/-2% and 80+/-2%, respectively. The results attribute to the big specific surface area and strong adsorption ability. Coal cinder filter removes a large portion of the pollutants in the influent wastewater, which would strongly stable the effluent waste water quality, and reduce the load of follow-up biological treatment process. The average removal efficiencies for COD, BOD(5), SS and color of the combined process were about 99.7+/-3%, 98.2+/-4%, 98.5+/-3% and 96.3+/-2%, respectively, with the average effluent quality of COD 16+/-1 mg/L, BOD(5) 11+/-1 mg/L, SS 10+/-0.6 mg/L and color 22+/-1 (multiple), which are consistent with the national requirements of the waste pollutants for pharmaceutical industry of chinese traditional medicine discharge standard (GB 21906-2008). The results indicated that the combined procedure could offer an attractive solution for pharmaceutical wastewater treatment with considerable low cost.

  11. Antibiotic abatement in different advanced oxidation processes coupled with a biological sequencing batch biofilm reactor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Esplugas, M.; Gonzalez, O.; Benito, J.; Sans, C.


    During the last decade, the lack of fresh water is becoming a major concern. Recently, the present of recalcitrant products such as pharmaceuticals has caused a special interest due to their undefined environmental impact. Among these antibiotics are one of the numerous recalcitrant pollutants present in surface waters that might not be completely removed in the biological stage of sewage treatment plants because of their antibacterial nature. Advanced Oxidation Processes (AOPs) have proved to be highly efficient for the degradation of most organic pollutants in wastewaters. (Author)

  12. Biogeomorphology of tidal landforms: physical and biological processes shaping the tidal landscape (United States)

    Marani, M.; D'Alpaos, A.; Da Lio, C.


    The equilibrium states and transient dynamics of tidal landforms are the result of many concurring physical and biological forcings, such as tidal range, wind climate, sediment supply, vegetation and microphytobenthos development, and rates of relative sea level rise (RSLR). A 0D model of the coupled elevation-vegetation dynamics is used to explore the relative role of the physical and biological factors shaping these systems. We find that salt marshes exposed to large tidal ranges are more stable, and therefore more resilient to increasing rates of RSLR, than marshes subjected to low tidal ranges and that subtidal platforms in macrotidal systems are less exposed to wind-induced erosion processes than their counterparts in systems with smaller tidal fluctuations. Notably, we find that vegetation crucially affects both the equilibrium marsh elevation, through dissipation of wind waves and organic accumulation, and marsh resilience to accelerations in RSLR rates, important differences being associated with different vegetation types. Furthermore, our results show that the existence and stability of equilibrium states fundamentally depend on the local wind and tidal regime, even within the same tidal system. Finally, we propose a modelling framework to study how biological evolution lead to the emergence of tidal landforms as we know them.

  13. Principles for integrating reactive species into in vivo biological processes: Examples from exercise physiology. (United States)

    Margaritelis, Nikos V; Cobley, James N; Paschalis, Vassilis; Veskoukis, Aristidis S; Theodorou, Anastasios A; Kyparos, Antonios; Nikolaidis, Michalis G


    The equivocal role of reactive species and redox signaling in exercise responses and adaptations is an example clearly showing the inadequacy of current redox biology research to shed light on fundamental biological processes in vivo. Part of the answer probably relies on the extreme complexity of the in vivo redox biology and the limitations of the currently applied methodological and experimental tools. We propose six fundamental principles that should be considered in future studies to mechanistically link reactive species production to exercise responses or adaptations: 1) identify and quantify the reactive species, 2) determine the potential signaling properties of the reactive species, 3) detect the sources of reactive species, 4) locate the domain modified and verify the (ir)reversibility of post-translational modifications, 5) establish causality between redox and physiological measurements, 6) use selective and targeted antioxidants. Fulfilling these principles requires an idealized human experimental setting, which is certainly a utopia. Thus, researchers should choose to satisfy those principles, which, based on scientific evidence, are most critical for their specific research question.

  14. Microbiology and atmospheric processes: biological, physical and chemical characterization of aerosol particles (United States)

    Georgakopoulos, D. G.; Després, V.; Fröhlich-Nowoisky, J.; Psenner, R.; Ariya, P. A.; Pósfai, M.; Ahern, H. E.; Moffett, B. F.; Hill, T. C. J.


    The interest in bioaerosols has traditionally been linked to health hazards for humans, animals and plants. However, several components of bioaerosols exhibit physical properties of great significance for cloud processes, such as ice nucleation and cloud condensation. To gain a better understanding of their influence on climate, it is therefore important to determine the composition, concentration, seasonal fluctuation, regional diversity and evolution of bioaerosols. In this paper, we will review briefly the existing techniques for detection, quantification, physical and chemical analysis of biological particles, attempting to bridge physical, chemical and biological methods for analysis of biological particles and integrate them with aerosol sampling techniques. We will also explore some emerging spectroscopy techniques for bulk and single-particle analysis that have potential for in-situ physical and chemical analysis. Lastly, we will outline open questions and further desired capabilities (e.g., in-situ, sensitive, both broad and selective, on-line, time-resolved, rapid, versatile, cost-effective techniques) required prior to comprehensive understanding of chemical and physical characterization of bioaerosols.

  15. Microbiology and atmospheric processes: biological, physical and chemical characterization of aerosol particles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. G. Georgakopoulos


    Full Text Available The interest in bioaerosols has traditionally been linked to health hazards for humans, animals and plants. However, several components of bioaerosols exhibit physical properties of great significance for cloud processes, such as ice nucleation and cloud condensation. To gain a better understanding of their influence on climate, it is therefore important to determine the composition, concentration, seasonal fluctuation, regional diversity and evolution of bioaerosols. In this paper, we will review briefly the existing techniques for detection, quantification, physical and chemical analysis of biological particles, attempting to bridge physical, chemical and biological methods for analysis of biological particles and integrate them with aerosol sampling techniques. We will also explore some emerging spectroscopy techniques for bulk and single-particle analysis that have potential for in-situ physical and chemical analysis. Lastly, we will outline open questions and further desired capabilities (e.g., in-situ, sensitive, both broad and selective, on-line, time-resolved, rapid, versatile, cost-effective techniques required prior to comprehensive understanding of chemical and physical characterization of bioaerosols.

  16. Microbiology and atmospheric processes: biological, physical and chemical characterization of aerosol particles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. G. Georgakopoulos


    Full Text Available The interest in bioaerosols has traditionally been linked to health hazards for humans, animals and plants. However, several components of bioaerosols exhibit physical properties of great significance for cloud processes, such as ice nucleation and cloud condensation. To gain a better understanding of their influence on climate, it is therefore important to determine the composition, concentration, seasonal fluctuation, regional diversity and evolution of bioaerosols. In this paper, we will review briefly the existing techniques for detection, quantification, physical and chemical analysis of biological particles, attempting to bridge physical, chemical and biological methods for analysis of biological particles and integrate them with aerosol sampling techniques. We will also explore some emerging spectroscopy techniques for bulk and single-particle analysis that have potential for in-situ physical and chemical analysis. Lastly, we will outline open questions and further desired capabilities (e.g., in-situ, sensitive, both broad and selective, on-line, time-resolved, rapid, versatile, cost-effective techniques required prior to comprehensive understanding of chemical and physical characterization of bioaerosols.

  17. A bio-inspired software for segmenting digital images.


    Díaz Pernil, Daniel; Molina Abril, Helena; Real Jurado, Pedro; Gutiérrez Naranjo, Miguel Ángel


    Segmentation in computer vision refers to the process of partitioning a digital image into multiple segments (sets of pixels). It has several features which make it suitable for techniques inspired by nature. It can be parallelized, locally solved and the input data can be easily encoded by bio-inspired representations. In this paper, we present a new software for performing a segmentation of 2D digital images based on Membrane Computing techniques.

  18. Bio-Inspired Sampling and Reconstruction Framework for Scientific Visualization (United States)


    AFRL-AFOSR-VA-TR-2015-0287 Bio - Inspired Sampling and Reconstruction Framework for Scientific Visualization Alireza Entezari UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA...TITLE AND SUBTITLE A Bio - inspired Sampling and Reconstruction Framework for Scientific Visualization 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER FA9550...invariant representation, one can increase the quality of signal reconstruction. Moreover, the computational cost of the reconstruction process is

  19. Object-based attentional modulation of biological motion processing: spatiotemporal dynamics using functional magnetic resonance imaging and electroencephalography. (United States)

    Safford, Ashley S; Hussey, Elizabeth A; Parasuraman, Raja; Thompson, James C


    Although it is well documented that the ability to perceive biological motion is mediated by the lateral temporal cortex, whether and when neural activity in this brain region is modulated by attention is unknown. In particular, it is unclear whether the processing of biological motion requires attention or whether such stimuli are processed preattentively. Here, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging, high-density electroencephalography, and cortically constrained source estimation methods to investigate the spatiotemporal effects of attention on the processing of biological motion. Directing attention to tool motion in overlapping movies of biological motion and tool motion suppressed the blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD) response of the right superior temporal sulcus (STS)/middle temporal gyrus (MTG), while directing attention to biological motion suppressed the BOLD response of the left inferior temporal sulcus (ITS)/MTG. Similarly, category-based modulation of the cortical current source density estimates from the right STS/MTG and left ITS was observed beginning at approximately 450 ms following stimulus onset. Our results indicate that the cortical processing of biological motion is strongly modulated by attention. These findings argue against preattentive processing of biological motion in the presence of stimuli that compete for attention. Our findings also suggest that the attention-based segregation of motion category-specific responses only emerges relatively late (several hundred milliseconds) in processing.

  20. Immuno-inspired robotic applications: a review

    CERN Document Server

    Raza, Ali


    Artificial immune systems primarily mimic the adaptive nature of biological immune functions. Their ability to adapt to varying pathogens makes such systems a suitable choice for various robotic applications. Generally, AIS-based robotic applications map local instantaneous sensory information into either an antigen or a co-stimulatory signal, according to the choice of representation schema. Algorithms then use relevant immune functions to output either evolved antibodies or maturity of dendritic cells, in terms of actuation signals. It is observed that researchers, in an attempt to solve the problem in hand, do not try to replicate the biological immunity but select necessary immune functions instead, resulting in an ad-hoc manner these applications are reported. Authors, therefore, present a comprehensive review of immuno-inspired robotic applications in an attempt to categorize them according to underlying immune definitions. Implementation details are tabulated in terms of corresponding mathematical expr...

  1. Research on rural sewage treatment using biological-ecological coupling process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chang SHI


    Full Text Available Developing low-investment, low-energy consumption and low-maintenance sewage treatment process is important for sewage treatment in rural areas. An upflow anaerobic filter (UAF without energy consumption and a subsurface flow wetland (SFW are utilized as a biological-ecological coupling process to treat rural domestic sewage. The effect of the coupling process on treatment performance of domestic sewage under different hydraulic retention time (HRT is investigated. The removal of nitrogen and phosphorus in the SFW is improved by increasing plant density. The results show that the coupling process of UAF and SFW has no power consumption and is maintenance-free, suitable for rural sewage treatment; the removal of nitrogen and phosphorus mainly happens in the SFW phase; increasing the density of reed plants in the SFW can obviously enhance the capacity to remove nitrogen and phosphorus, and ensure that the efficient performance of the coupling process of UAF and SFW is stabilized in a high level. When the HRTs of UAF and SFW are 18 h and 3 d, respectively, the concentrations of COD, ammonia nitrogen, total nitrogen and total phosphorus in the final effluent treated by UAF and SFW process are 44.07, 4.25, 13.36 and 0.44 mg/L, respectively, meeting the requirement of first grade class A in Discharge Standard of Pollutants for Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plant (GB 18918-2002.

  2. Advances in wastewater nitrogen removal by biological processes: state of the art review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea G. Capodaglio


    Full Text Available The paper summarizes the state-of-the-art of the most recent advances in biological nitrogen removal, including process design criteria and technological innovations. With reference to the Modified Ludzck Ettinger (MLE process (pre-denitrification and nitrification in the activated sludge process, the most common nitrogen removal process used nowadays, a new design equation for the denitrification reactor based on specific denitrification rate (SDNR has been proposed. In addition, factors influencing SDNR (DO in the anoxic reactor; hydrodynamic behavior are analyzed, and technological solutions are proposed. Concerning technological advances, the paper presents a summary of various “deammonification” processes, better known by their patent names like ANAMMOX®, DEMON®, CANON®, ANITA® and others. These processes have already found applications in the treatment of high-strength wastewater such as digested sludge liquor and landfill leachate. Among other emerging denitrification technologies, consideration is given to the Membrane Biofilm Reactors (MBfRs that can be operated both in oxidation and reduction mode.

  3. Composting of the solid fraction of digestate derived from pig slurry: Biological processes and compost properties

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tambone, Fulvia, E-mail:; Terruzzi, Laura; Scaglia, Barbara; Adani, Fabrizio


    Highlights: • Anaerobic digestion leads to the production of a biologically stable digestate. • Solid–liquid separation produces a solid fraction having high fertilizer value. • Composting process shows low biological activity due to high biological stability of digestate. • Solid digestate fraction can be composted in a short time or used directly as organic fertilizer. - Abstract: The aim of this paper was to assess the characteristics of the solid fractions (SF) obtained by mechanical separation of digestate, their compostability and compost quality. To do so, the SF of digestates obtained from anaerobic digestion of pig slurry, energy crops and agro-industrial residues were sampled in five plants located in Northern Italy. Results obtained indicated that anaerobic digestion by itself promoted the high biological stability of biomasses with a Potential Dynamic Respiration Index (PDRI) close to 1000 mgO{sub 2} kg V S{sup −1} h{sup −1}. Subsequent composting of digestates, with an added bulking agent, did not give remarkably different results, and led only to a slight modification of the characteristics of the initial non-composted mixtures; the composts obtained fully respected the legal limits for high quality compost. Chemical studies of organic matter composition of the biomasses by using CP MAS {sup 13}C NMR, indicated that the compost was composed of a high relative content of O-alkyl-C (71.47% of total C) (cellulose and hemicelluloses) and a low alkyl-C (12.42%) (i.e. volatile fatty acids, steroid-like molecules, aliphatic biopolymers and proteins)

  4. Nature-inspired optimization algorithms

    CERN Document Server

    Yang, Xin-She


    Nature-Inspired Optimization Algorithms provides a systematic introduction to all major nature-inspired algorithms for optimization. The book's unified approach, balancing algorithm introduction, theoretical background and practical implementation, complements extensive literature with well-chosen case studies to illustrate how these algorithms work. Topics include particle swarm optimization, ant and bee algorithms, simulated annealing, cuckoo search, firefly algorithm, bat algorithm, flower algorithm, harmony search, algorithm analysis, constraint handling, hybrid methods, parameter tuning

  5. Advanced treatment of biologically pretreated coal gasification wastewater by a novel heterogeneous Fenton oxidation process. (United States)

    Zhuang, Haifeng; Han, Hongjun; Ma, Wencheng; Hou, Baolin; Jia, Shengyong; Zhao, Qian


    Sewage sludge from a biological wastewater treatment plant was converted into sewage sludge based activated carbon (SBAC) with ZnCl2 as activation agent, which was used as a support for ferric oxides to form a catalyst (FeOx/SBAC) by a simple impregnation method. The new material was then used to improve the performance of Fenton oxidation of real biologically pretreated coal gasification wastewater (CGW). The results indicated that the prepared FeOx/SBAC significantly enhanced the pollutant removal performance in the Fenton process, so that the treated wastewater was more biodegradable and less toxic. The best performance was obtained over a wide pH range from 2 to 7, temperature 30°C, 15 mg/L of H2O2 and 1g/L of catalyst, and the treated effluent concentrations of COD, total phenols, BOD5 and TOC all met the discharge limits in China. Meanwhile, on the basis of significant inhibition by a radical scavenger in the heterogeneous Fenton process as well as the evolution of FT-IR spectra of pollutant-saturated FeOx/BAC with and without H2O2, it was deduced that the catalytic activity was responsible for generating hydroxyl radicals, and a possible reaction pathway and interface mechanism were proposed. Moreover, FeOx/SBAC showed superior stability over five successive oxidation runs. Thus, heterogeneous Fenton oxidation of biologically pretreated CGW by FeOx/SBAC, with the advantages of being economical, efficient and sustainable, holds promise for engineering application.

  6. Employment of the covariance matrix in parameter estimation for stochastic processes in cell biology (United States)

    Preuss, R.; Dieterich, P.


    The dynamics of movements of biological cells can be described with models from correlated stochastic processes. In order to overcome problems from correlated and insufficient data in the determination of the model parameters of such processes we employ the covariance matrix of the data. Since the covariance suffers itself from statistical uncertainty it is corrected by a renormalization treatment [1]. For the example of normal and fractional Brownian motion, which allows both to access all quantities on full theoretical grounds and to generate data similar to experiment, we discuss our results and those of previous works by Gregory [2] and Sivia [3]. The presented approach has the potential to estimate the aging correlation function of observed cell paths and can be applied to more complicated models.

  7. Signal processing for molecular and cellular biological physics: an emerging field (United States)

    Little, Max A.; Jones, Nick S.


    Recent advances in our ability to watch the molecular and cellular processes of life in action—such as atomic force microscopy, optical tweezers and Forster fluorescence resonance energy transfer—raise challenges for digital signal processing (DSP) of the resulting experimental data. This article explores the unique properties of such biophysical time series that set them apart from other signals, such as the prevalence of abrupt jumps and steps, multi-modal distributions and autocorrelated noise. It exposes the problems with classical linear DSP algorithms applied to this kind of data, and describes new nonlinear and non-Gaussian algorithms that are able to extract information that is of direct relevance to biological physicists. It is argued that these new methods applied in this context typify the nascent field of biophysical DSP. Practical experimental examples are supplied. PMID:23277603

  8. Biological processes in the water column of the South Atlantic Bight: Zooplankton responses. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Paffenhofer, G.A.


    This study sought to determine and understand the major processes governing the abundance, distribution, composition and eventual fate of zooplankton on the southeastern shelf of the US in relation to water circulation. Over much of the shelf circulation is dominated by the Gulf Stream and/or atmospheric forcing. Most of our studies concentrated on processes on the middle and outer shelf. On the latter, pronounced biological production occurs year-round at frequent intervals and is due to Gulf Stream eddies which move by at an average frequency of one every week. These eddies are rich in nutrients which, when upwelled into the euphoric zone, lead to pronounced primary production which then triggers zooplankton production.

  9. Biological processes in the water column of the South Atlantic Bight: Zooplankton responses

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Paffenhofer, G.A.


    This study sought to determine and understand the major processes governing the abundance, distribution, composition and eventual fate of zooplankton on the southeastern shelf of the US in relation to water circulation. Over much of the shelf circulation is dominated by the Gulf Stream and/or atmospheric forcing. Most of our studies concentrated on processes on the middle and outer shelf. On the latter, pronounced biological production occurs year-round at frequent intervals and is due to Gulf Stream eddies which move by at an average frequency of one every week. These eddies are rich in nutrients which, when upwelled into the euphoric zone, lead to pronounced primary production which then triggers zooplankton production.

  10. Connecting marine productivity to sea-spray via nanoscale biological processes: Phytoplankton Dance or Death Disco? (United States)

    O'Dowd, Colin; Ceburnis, Darius; Ovadnevaite, Jurgita; Bialek, Jakub; Stengel, Dagmar B.; Zacharias, Merry; Nitschke, Udo; Connan, Solene; Rinaldi, Matteo; Fuzzi, Sandro; Decesari, Stefano; Cristina Facchini, Maria; Marullo, Salvatore; Santoleri, Rosalia; Dell'Anno, Antonio; Corinaldesi, Cinzia; Tangherlini, Michael; Danovaro, Roberto


    Bursting bubbles at the ocean-surface produce airborne salt-water spray-droplets, in turn, forming climate-cooling marine haze and cloud layers. The reflectance and ultimate cooling effect of these layers is determined by the spray’s water-uptake properties that are modified through entrainment of ocean-surface organic matter (OM) into the airborne droplets. We present new results illustrating a clear dependence of OM mass-fraction enrichment in sea spray (OMss) on both phytoplankton-biomass, determined from Chlorophyll-a (Chl-a) and Net Primary Productivity (NPP). The correlation coefficient for OMss as a function of Chl-a increased form 0.67 on a daily timescale to 0.85 on a monthly timescale. An even stronger correlation was found as a function of NPP, increasing to 0.93 on a monthly timescale. We suggest the observed dependence is through the demise of the bloom, driven by nanoscale biological processes (such as viral infections), releasing large quantities of transferable OM comprising cell debris, exudates and other colloidal materials. This OM, through aggregation processes, leads to enrichment in sea-spray, thus demonstrating an important coupling between biologically-driven plankton bloom termination, marine productivity and sea-spray modification with potentially significant climate impacts.

  11. An Indexed, Mapped Mutant Library Enables Reverse Genetics Studies of Biological Processes in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. (United States)

    Li, Xiaobo; Zhang, Ru; Patena, Weronika; Gang, Spencer S; Blum, Sean R; Ivanova, Nina; Yue, Rebecca; Robertson, Jacob M; Lefebvre, Paul A; Fitz-Gibbon, Sorel T; Grossman, Arthur R; Jonikas, Martin C


    The green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii is a leading unicellular model for dissecting biological processes in photosynthetic eukaryotes. However, its usefulness has been limited by difficulties in obtaining mutants in specific genes of interest. To allow generation of large numbers of mapped mutants, we developed high-throughput methods that (1) enable easy maintenance of tens of thousands of Chlamydomonas strains by propagation on agar media and by cryogenic storage, (2) identify mutagenic insertion sites and physical coordinates in these collections, and (3) validate the insertion sites in pools of mutants by obtaining >500 bp of flanking genomic sequences. We used these approaches to construct a stably maintained library of 1935 mapped mutants, representing disruptions in 1562 genes. We further characterized randomly selected mutants and found that 33 out of 44 insertion sites (75%) could be confirmed by PCR, and 17 out of 23 mutants (74%) contained a single insertion. To demonstrate the power of this library for elucidating biological processes, we analyzed the lipid content of mutants disrupted in genes encoding proteins of the algal lipid droplet proteome. This study revealed a central role of the long-chain acyl-CoA synthetase LCS2 in the production of triacylglycerol from de novo-synthesized fatty acids.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aleksandra Jolanta Bawiec


    Full Text Available Municipal wastewater is characterized by diverse microbial content, largely dependent on their sources as well as many other factors like condition and health of their producer, but also environmental factors. The number and share of individual bacterial population in wastewater is changing during the process of their treatment in wastewater treatment plants. The microbial content of treated wastewater is significantly affected by the type of technology used for wastewater treatment. The paper presents the results of the species composition of bacteria present in the wastewater at various stages of treatment for the two different technologies. Samples of wastewater from hydroponic wastewater treatment plant and from the plant which technology is based on biofilters were analysed. A key mechanism for wastewater treatment in both cases is biological treatment, using microbial activity that decomposes pollutants in the wastewater, which significantly contributes to changes in the species composition of bacteria comparing to microbiological composition of sewage flowing into the treatment plant. Analyses of microbial composition showed that in the objects consisting of preliminary tank and biofilter, composition of bacteria species is changing, but many species isolated from raw sewage is also found in treated wastewater. In the plant with hydroponic lagoon after wastewater treatment throughout the process system, bacteria present in raw sewage or in wastewater after biological treatment were not identified in the outlet.

  13. A single-stage biological process for municipal sewage treatment in tourist areas. (United States)

    Di Iaconi, C; De Sanctis, M; Lopez, A


    This pilot scale study aims to test the effectiveness of an innovative compact biological system (SBBGR - Sequencing Batch Biofilter Granular Reactor) for treating municipal wastewater in tourist areas characterised by intense seasonal water demand and wastewater discharge. The results obtained after a long term operation of 463 days have shown that the proposed system is able to assure average removal efficiencies higher than 90% for COD (chemical oxygen demand), total suspended solids and TKN (total Kjeldahl nitrogen) independently of the influent concentration values and organic loading, which ranged from 0.2 to 5.1 kgCOD/m(3)biofilter.d Furthermore, the plant showed a high degree of operation flexibility and stability in response to the organic load variations occurring in tourist areas. In fact, no significant deterioration in the plant's effluent quality was observed even during a sudden several-fold increase in organic loading. High nitrogen removal efficiencies (80%, on average) were also achieved thanks to the establishment of simultaneous nitrification-denitrification process favoured by the plant's high biomass concentration and operating conditions. Finally, the system was characterized by an excess sludge production much lower (60-80% lower) than that of conventional biological systems operating without a primary clarifier. An acceptable level of stabilization of excess sludge was also obtained so that a further stabilization process was no longer required.

  14. Network-based analysis of affected biological processes in type 2 diabetes models.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manway Liu


    Full Text Available Type 2 diabetes mellitus is a complex disorder associated with multiple genetic, epigenetic, developmental, and environmental factors. Animal models of type 2 diabetes differ based on diet, drug treatment, and gene knockouts, and yet all display the clinical hallmarks of hyperglycemia and insulin resistance in peripheral tissue. The recent advances in gene-expression microarray technologies present an unprecedented opportunity to study type 2 diabetes mellitus at a genome-wide scale and across different models. To date, a key challenge has been to identify the biological processes or signaling pathways that play significant roles in the disorder. Here, using a network-based analysis methodology, we identified two sets of genes, associated with insulin signaling and a network of nuclear receptors, which are recurrent in a statistically significant number of diabetes and insulin resistance models and transcriptionally altered across diverse tissue types. We additionally identified a network of protein-protein interactions between members from the two gene sets that may facilitate signaling between them. Taken together, the results illustrate the benefits of integrating high-throughput microarray studies, together with protein-protein interaction networks, in elucidating the underlying biological processes associated with a complex disorder.

  15. Building Blocks Propagation in Quantum-Inspired Genetic Algorithm

    CERN Document Server

    Nowotniak, Robert


    This paper presents an analysis of building blocks propagation in Quantum-Inspired Genetic Algorithm, which belongs to a new class of metaheuristics drawing their inspiration from both biological evolution and unitary evolution of quantum systems. The expected number of quantum chromosomes matching a schema has been analyzed and a random variable corresponding to this issue has been introduced. The results have been compared with Simple Genetic Algorithm. Also, it has been presented how selected binary quantum chromosomes cover a domain of one-dimensional fitness function.

  16. Effect of the Mn Oxidation State on Single-Molecule-Magnet Properties: Mn(III) vs Mn(IV) in Biologically Inspired DyMn3O4 Cubanes. (United States)

    Lin, Po-Heng; Tsui, Emily Y; Habib, Fatemah; Murugesu, Muralee; Agapie, Theodor


    Inspired by the ferromagnetic coupling in the cubane model CaMn(IV)3O4 of the oxygen-evolving complex of photosystem II, 3d-4f mixed-metal DyMn3O4 clusters were prepared for investigation of the magnetic properties. For comparison, YMn(IV)3O4 and YMn(IV)2Mn(III)O4 clusters were investigated as well and showed ferromagnetic interactions, like the calcium analogue. DyMn(IV)3O4 displays single-molecule-magnet properties, while the one-electron-reduced species (DyMn(IV)2Mn(III)O4) does not, despite the presence of a Mn(III) center with higher spin and single-ion anisotropy.

  17. Amoeba-inspired nanoarchitectonic computing: solving intractable computational problems using nanoscale photoexcitation transfer dynamics. (United States)

    Aono, Masashi; Naruse, Makoto; Kim, Song-Ju; Wakabayashi, Masamitsu; Hori, Hirokazu; Ohtsu, Motoichi; Hara, Masahiko


    Biologically inspired computing devices and architectures are expected to overcome the limitations of conventional technologies in terms of solving computationally demanding problems, adapting to complex environments, reducing energy consumption, and so on. We previously demonstrated that a primitive single-celled amoeba (a plasmodial slime mold), which exhibits complex spatiotemporal oscillatory dynamics and sophisticated computing capabilities, can be used to search for a solution to a very hard combinatorial optimization problem. We successfully extracted the essential spatiotemporal dynamics by which the amoeba solves the problem. This amoeba-inspired computing paradigm can be implemented by various physical systems that exhibit suitable spatiotemporal dynamics resembling the amoeba's problem-solving process. In this Article, we demonstrate that photoexcitation transfer phenomena in certain quantum nanostructures mediated by optical near-field interactions generate the amoebalike spatiotemporal dynamics and can be used to solve the satisfiability problem (SAT), which is the problem of judging whether a given logical proposition (a Boolean formula) is self-consistent. SAT is related to diverse application problems in artificial intelligence, information security, and bioinformatics and is a crucially important nondeterministic polynomial time (NP)-complete problem, which is believed to become intractable for conventional digital computers when the problem size increases. We show that our amoeba-inspired computing paradigm dramatically outperforms a conventional stochastic search method. These results indicate the potential for developing highly versatile nanoarchitectonic computers that realize powerful solution searching with low energy consumption.

  18. Remediation of a winery wastewater combining aerobic biological oxidation and electrochemical advanced oxidation processes. (United States)

    Moreira, Francisca C; Boaventura, Rui A R; Brillas, Enric; Vilar, Vítor J P


    Apart from a high biodegradable fraction consisting of organic acids, sugars and alcohols, winery wastewaters exhibit a recalcitrant fraction containing high-molecular-weight compounds as polyphenols, tannins and lignins. In this context, a winery wastewater was firstly subjected to a biological oxidation to mineralize the biodegradable fraction and afterwards an electrochemical advanced oxidation process (EAOP) was applied in order to mineralize the refractory molecules or transform them into simpler ones that can be further biodegraded. The biological oxidation led to above 97% removals of dissolved organic carbon (DOC), chemical oxygen demand (COD) and 5-day biochemical oxygen demand (BOD5), but was inefficient on the degradation of a bioresistant fraction corresponding to 130 mg L(-1) of DOC, 380 mg O2 L(-1) of COD and 8.2 mg caffeic acid equivalent L(-1) of total dissolved polyphenols. Various EAOPs such as anodic oxidation with electrogenerated H2O2 (AO-H2O2), electro-Fenton (EF), UVA photoelectro-Fenton (PEF) and solar PEF (SPEF) were then applied to the recalcitrant effluent fraction using a 2.2 L lab-scale flow plant containing an electrochemical cell equipped with a boron-doped diamond (BDD) anode and a carbon-PTFE air-diffusion cathode and coupled to a photoreactor with compound parabolic collectors (CPCs). The influence of initial Fe(2+) concentration and current density on the PEF process was evaluated. The relative oxidative ability of EAOPs increased in the order AO-H2O2 process using an initial Fe(2+) concentration of 35 mg L(-1), current density of 25 mA cm(-2), pH of 2.8 and 25 °C reached removals of 86% on DOC and 68% on COD after 240 min, regarding the biologically treated effluent, along with energy consumptions of 45 kWh (kg DOC)(-1) and 5.1 kWh m(-3). After this coupled treatment, color, odor, COD, BOD5, NH4(+), NO3(-) and SO4(2-) parameters complied with the legislation targets and, in addition, a total dissolved polyphenols content of 0

  19. Open water processes of the San Francisco Estuary: From physical forcing to biological responses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wim Kimmerer


    Full Text Available This paper reviews the current state of knowledge of the open waters of the San Francisco Estuary. This estuary is well known for the extent to which it has been altered through loss of wetlands, changes in hydrography, and the introduction of chemical and biological contaminants. It is also one of the most studied estuaries in the world, with much of the recent research effort aimed at supporting restoration efforts. In this review I emphasize the conceptual foundations for our current understanding of estuarine dynamics, particularly those aspects relevant to restoration. Several themes run throughout this paper. First is the critical role physical dynamics play in setting the stage for chemical and biological responses. Physical forcing by the tides and by variation in freshwater input combine to control the movement of the salinity field, and to establish stratification, mixing, and dilution patterns throughout the estuary. Many aspects of estuarine dynamics respond to interannual variation in freshwater flow; in particular, abundance of several estuarine-dependent species of fish and shrimp varies positively with flow, although the mechanisms behind these relationships are largely unknown. The second theme is the importance of time scales in determining the degree of interaction between dynamic processes. Physical effects tend to dominate when they operate at shorter time scales than biological processes; when the two time scales are similar, important interactions can arise between physical and biological variability. These interactions can be seen, for example, in the response of phytoplankton blooms, with characteristic time scales of days, to stratification events occurring during neap tides. The third theme is the key role of introduced species in all estuarine habitats; particularly noteworthy are introduced waterweeds and fishes in the tidal freshwater reaches of the estuary, and introduced clams there and in brackish water. The

  20. Biological Computation as the Revolution of Complex Engineered Systems

    CERN Document Server

    Gómez-Cruz, Nelson Alfonso


    Provided that there is no theoretical frame for complex engineered systems (CES) as yet, this paper claims that bio-inspired engineering can help provide such a frame. Within CES bio-inspired systems play a key role. The disclosure from bio-inspired systems and biological computation has not been sufficiently worked out, however. Biological computation is to be taken as the processing of information by living systems that is carried out in polynomial time, i.e., efficiently; such processing however is grasped by current science and research as an intractable problem (for instance, the protein folding problem). A remark is needed here: P versus NP problems should be well defined and delimited but biological computation problems are not. The shift from conventional engineering to bio-inspired engineering needs bring the subject (or problem) of computability to a new level. Within the frame of computation, so far, the prevailing paradigm is still the Turing-Church thesis. In other words, conventional engineering...

  1. A cognitive computational model inspired by the immune system response. (United States)

    Abdo Abd Al-Hady, Mohamed; Badr, Amr Ahmed; Mostafa, Mostafa Abd Al-Azim


    The immune system has a cognitive ability to differentiate between healthy and unhealthy cells. The immune system response (ISR) is stimulated by a disorder in the temporary fuzzy state that is oscillating between the healthy and unhealthy states. However, modeling the immune system is an enormous challenge; the paper introduces an extensive summary of how the immune system response functions, as an overview of a complex topic, to present the immune system as a cognitive intelligent agent. The homogeneity and perfection of the natural immune system have been always standing out as the sought-after model we attempted to imitate while building our proposed model of cognitive architecture. The paper divides the ISR into four logical phases: setting a computational architectural diagram for each phase, proceeding from functional perspectives (input, process, and output), and their consequences. The proposed architecture components are defined by matching biological operations with computational functions and hence with the framework of the paper. On the other hand, the architecture focuses on the interoperability of main theoretical immunological perspectives (classic, cognitive, and danger theory), as related to computer science terminologies. The paper presents a descriptive model of immune system, to figure out the nature of response, deemed to be intrinsic for building a hybrid computational model based on a cognitive intelligent agent perspective and inspired by the natural biology. To that end, this paper highlights the ISR phases as applied to a case study on hepatitis C virus, meanwhile illustrating our proposed architecture perspective.

  2. Fermentation of biologically pretreated wheat straw for ethanol production: comparison of fermentative microorganisms and process configurations. (United States)

    López-Abelairas, María; Lu-Chau, Thelmo Alejandro; Lema, Juan Manuel


    The pretreatment of lignocellulosic biomass with white-rot fungi to produce bioethanol is an environmentally friendly alternative to the commonly used physico-chemical processes. After biological pretreatment, a solid substrate composed of cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin, the two latter with a composition lower than that of the initial substrate, is obtained. In this study, six microorganisms and four process configurations were utilised to ferment a hydrolysate obtained from wheat straw pretreated with the white-rot fungus Irpex lacteus. To enhance total sugars utilisation, five of these microorganisms are able to metabolise, in addition to glucose, most of the pentoses obtained after the hydrolysis of wheat straw by the application of a mixture of hemicellulolytic and cellulolytic enzymes. The highest overall ethanol yield was obtained with the yeast Pachysolen tannophilus. Its application in combination with the best process configuration yielded 163 mg ethanol per gram of raw wheat straw, which was between 23 and 35 % greater than the yields typically obtained with a conventional bioethanol process, in which wheat straw is pretreated using steam explosion and fermented with the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

  3. Experimental Fluidic Investigation of Degradation of Pico-liter Oil Droplets by Physical and Biological Processes (United States)

    Jalali, Maryam; Sheng, Jian


    This study used laboratory experiments to assess degradation of crude oil by physical and biological processes including dissolution and consumption. To perform this study, we have developed a bioassay that consists of a flow chamber with a bottom glass substrate printed with an array of pico-liter oil droplets using micro-Transfer Printing. The technique allows the printing of highly homogeneous pico-liter droplet array with different dimensions and shapes that can be maintained for weeks. Since the droplets are pinned and stationary on the bottom substrate, the key processes can be evaluated by measuring the change of shape and volume using Atomic Force Microscopy. Parallel microfluidic bioassays are established at the beginning, exposed to abiotic/biotic solutions, and scarified for characterization at given time intervals for each experiment. Two processes, dissolution and consumption, are investigated. In addition, the effects of dispersant on these processes are also studied. The results show that the amount of oil degraded by bacteria accounts for almost 50% of the total volume in comparison to 25% via dissolution. Although dispersant has a subtle effect on dissolution, the effect on rates of consumption and its asymptotic behavior are substantial. Experiments involving different bacterial strains, dispersant concentration, and flow shear rate are on-going.

  4. A cell-free expression and purification process for rapid production of protein biologics. (United States)

    Sullivan, Challise J; Pendleton, Erik D; Sasmor, Henri H; Hicks, William L; Farnum, John B; Muto, Machiko; Amendt, Eric M; Schoborg, Jennifer A; Martin, Rey W; Clark, Lauren G; Anderson, Mark J; Choudhury, Alaksh; Fior, Raffaella; Lo, Yu-Hwa; Griffey, Richard H; Chappell, Stephen A; Jewett, Michael C; Mauro, Vincent P; Dresios, John


    Cell-free protein synthesis has emerged as a powerful technology for rapid and efficient protein production. Cell-free methods are also amenable to automation and such systems have been extensively used for high-throughput protein production and screening; however, current fluidic systems are not adequate for manufacturing protein biopharmaceuticals. In this work, we report on the initial development of a fluidic process for rapid end-to-end production of recombinant protein biologics. This process incorporates a bioreactor module that can be used with eukaryotic or prokaryotic lysates that are programmed for combined transcription/translation of an engineered DNA template encoding for specific protein targets. Purification of the cell-free expressed product occurs through a series of protein separation modules that are configurable for process-specific isolation of different proteins. Using this approach, we demonstrate production of two bioactive human protein therapeutics, erythropoietin and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor, in yeast and bacterial extracts, respectively, each within 24 hours. This process is flexible, scalable and amenable to automation for rapid production at the point-of-need of proteins with significant pharmaceutical, medical, or biotechnological value.

  5. A Biophysicochemical Model for NO Removal by the Chemical Absorption-Biological Reduction Integrated Process. (United States)

    Zhao, Jingkai; Xia, Yinfeng; Li, Meifang; Li, Sujing; Li, Wei; Zhang, Shihan


    The chemical absorption-biological reduction (CABR) integrated process is regarded as a promising technology for NOx removal from flue gas. To advance the scale-up of the CABR process, a mathematic model based on mass transfer with reaction in the gas, liquid, and biofilm was developed to simulate and predict the NOx removal by the CABR system in a biotrickling filter. The developed model was validated by the experimental results and subsequently was used to predict the system performance under different operating conditions, such as NO and O2 concentration and gas and liquid flow rate. NO distribution in the gas phase along the biotrickling filter was also modeled and predicted. On the basis of the modeling results, the liquid flow rate and total iron concentration were optimized to achieve >90% NO removal efficiency. Furthermore, sensitivity analysis of the model revealed that the performance of the CABR process was controlled by the bioreduction activity of Fe(III)EDTA. This work will provide the guideline for the design and operation of the CABR process in the industrial application.

  6. Combined treatment of olive mill wastewater by Fenton's reagent and anaerobic biological process. (United States)

    Amor, Carlos; Lucas, Marco S; García, Juan; Dominguez, Joaquín R; De Heredia, J Beltrán; Peres, José A


    This work presents the application of Fenton's reagent process combined with anaerobic digestion to treat an olive mill wastewater (OMW). Firstly, OMW was pre-treated by chemical oxidation in a batch reactor with Fenton's reagent, using a fixed H2O2/COD ratio of 0.20, pH = 3.5 and a H2O2/Fe(2+) molar ratio of 15:1. This advanced oxidation treatment allowed reaching reductions of 17.6 and 82.5% of chemical oxygen demand (COD) and total polyphenols (TP), respectively. Secondly, OMW treatment by anaerobic digestion was performed using previously adapted microorganisms immobilized in Sepiolite. These biological tests were carried out varying the substrate concentration supplied to the reactor and COD conversions from 52 to 74% were obtained. Afterwards, Fenton's reagent followed by anaerobic digestion was applied to OMW treatment. This combined process presented a significant improvement on organic load removal, reaching COD degradations from 64 to 88%. Beyond the pollutant load removal, it was also monitored the yield of methane generated throughout anaerobic experiments. The methane produced ranged from 281 cm(3) to 322 cm(3) of CH4/g COD removed. Additionally, a methane generation kinetic study was performed using the Monod Model. The application of this model allowed observing a kinetic constant increase of the combined process (kFN = 0.036 h(-1)) when compared to the single anaerobic process (kF = 0.017 h(-1)).

  7. Pilot plant study on ozonation and biological activated carbon process for drinking water treatment

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    A study on advanced drinking water treatment was conducted in a pilot scale plant taking water from conventional treatment process. Ozonation-biological activated carbon process (O3-BAC) and granular activated carbon process (GAC) were evaluated based on the following parameters: CODMn, UV254, total organic carbon (TOC), assimilable organic carbon (AOC) and biodegradable dissolved organic carbon (BDOC). In this test, the average removal rates of CODMn , UV254 and TOC in O3-BAC were18.2%, 9.0% and 10.2% higher on (AOC) than in GAC, respectively. Ozonation increased 19.3-57.6 μg Acetate-C/L in AOC-P17,45.6-130.6 μg Acetate-C/L in AOC-NOX and 0.1-0.5 mg/L in BDOC with ozone doses of 2-8 mg/L. The optimum ozone dose for maximum AOC formation was 3 mgO3/L. BAC filtration was effective process to improve biostability.

  8. Towards Bio-Inspired Chromatic Behaviours in Surveillance Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sampath Kumar Karutaa Gnaniar


    Full Text Available The field of Robotics is ever growing at the same time as posing enormous challenges. Numerous works has been done in biologically inspired robotics emulating models, systems and elements of nature for the purpose of solving traditional robotics problems. Chromatic behaviours are abundant in nature across a variety of living species to achieve camouflage, signaling, and temperature regulation. The ability of these creatures to successfully blend in with their environment and communicate by changing their colour is the fundamental inspiration for our research work. In this paper, we present dwarf chameleon inspired chromatic behaviour in the context of an autonomous surveillance robot, “PACHONDHI”. In our experiments, we successfully validated the ability of the robot to autonomously change its colour in relation to the terrain that it is traversing for maximizing detectability to friendly security agents and minimizing exposure to hostile agents, as well as to communicate with fellow cooperating robots.

  9. Demonstrations of bio-inspired perching landing gear for UAVs (United States)

    Tieu, Mindy; Michael, Duncan M.; Pflueger, Jeffery B.; Sethi, Manik S.; Shimazu, Kelli N.; Anthony, Tatiana M.; Lee, Christopher L.


    Results are presented which demonstrate the feasibility and performance of two concepts of biologically-inspired landing-gear systems that enable bird-sized, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV's) to land, perch, and take-off from branchlike structures and/or ledges. The first concept follows the anatomy of birds that can grasp ahold of a branch and perch as tendons in their legs are tensioned. This design involves a gravity-activated, cable-driven, underactuated, graspingfoot mechanism. As the UAV lands, its weight collapses a four-bar linkage pulling a cable which curls two opposing, multi-segmented feet to grasp the landing target. Each foot is a single, compliant mechanism fabricated by simultaneouly 3D-printing a flexible thermo-plastic and a stiffer ABS plastic. The design is optimized to grasp structures over a range of shapes and sizes. Quasi-static and flight tests of this landing gear affixed to RC rotorcraft (24 cm to 550 cm in diameter) demonstrate that the aircraft can land, perch, and take-off from a tree branch, rectangular wood board, PVC pipe, metal hand rail, chair armrest, and in addition, a stone wall ledge. Stability tests show that perching is maintained under base and wind disturbances. The second design concept, inspired by roosting bats, is a two-material, 3D-printed hooking mechanism that enables the UAV to stably suspend itself from a wire or small-diameter branch. The design balances structural stiffness for support and flexibility for the perching process. A flight-test demonstrates the attaching and dis-engaging of a small, RC quadcopter from a suspended line.

  10. Cellular automaton model of crowd evacuation inspired by slime mould (United States)

    Kalogeiton, V. S.; Papadopoulos, D. P.; Georgilas, I. P.; Sirakoulis, G. Ch.; Adamatzky, A. I.


    In all the living organisms, the self-preservation behaviour is almost universal. Even the most simple of living organisms, like slime mould, is typically under intense selective pressure to evolve a response to ensure their evolution and safety in the best possible way. On the other hand, evacuation of a place can be easily characterized as one of the most stressful situations for the individuals taking part on it. Taking inspiration from the slime mould behaviour, we are introducing a computational bio-inspired model crowd evacuation model. Cellular Automata (CA) were selected as a fully parallel advanced computation tool able to mimic the Physarum's behaviour. In particular, the proposed CA model takes into account while mimicking the Physarum foraging process, the food diffusion, the organism's growth, the creation of tubes for each organism, the selection of optimum tube for each human in correspondence to the crowd evacuation under study and finally, the movement of all humans at each time step towards near exit. To test the model's efficiency and robustness, several simulation scenarios were proposed both in virtual and real-life indoor environments (namely, the first floor of office building B of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering of Democritus University of Thrace). The proposed model is further evaluated in a purely quantitative way by comparing the simulation results with the corresponding ones from the bibliography taken by real data. The examined fundamental diagrams of velocity-density and flow-density are found in full agreement with many of the already published corresponding results proving the adequacy, the fitness and the resulting dynamics of the model. Finally, several real Physarum experiments were conducted in an archetype of the aforementioned real-life environment proving at last that the proposed model succeeded in reproducing sufficiently the Physarum's recorded behaviour derived from observation of the aforementioned

  11. Simulation and optimization of a coking wastewater biological treatment process by activated sludge models (ASM). (United States)

    Wu, Xiaohui; Yang, Yang; Wu, Gaoming; Mao, Juan; Zhou, Tao


    Applications of activated sludge models (ASM) in simulating industrial biological wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) are still difficult due to refractory and complex components in influents as well as diversity in activated sludges. In this study, an ASM3 modeling study was conducted to simulate and optimize a practical coking wastewater treatment plant (CWTP). First, respirometric characterizations of the coking wastewater and CWTP biomasses were conducted to determine the specific kinetic and stoichiometric model parameters for the consecutive aeration-anoxic-aeration (O-A/O) biological process. All ASM3 parameters have been further estimated and calibrated, through cross validation by the model dynamic simulation procedure. Consequently, an ASM3 model was successfully established to accurately simulate the CWTP performances in removing COD and NH4-N. An optimized CWTP operation condition could be proposed reducing the operation cost from 6.2 to 5.5 €/m(3) wastewater. This study is expected to provide a useful reference for mathematic simulations of practical industrial WWTPs.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanna Smyk


    Full Text Available The aim of the research was to determine the COD fraction thereof in sewage and their changes in the effluent after further treatment processes. The study was conducted in a sewage treatment plant in Bialystok (RLM> 100000. In sewage the highest concentrations occurred in the suspension of the organic fractions slowly biodegradable XS (303.7 mg O2/l and dissolved organic compounds readily biodegradable SS (263 mg O2/l. The lower amounts were irreducible fractions dissolved in sewage and suspended SI (56 mg O2/l and XI (101.2 mg O2/l. Almost 80% of the total COD fractions were biodegradable (SS + XS. In the treated wastewater soluble fraction SI-biodegradable (56 mg O2/l occurred in the highest concentration. The flow of wastewater by components of sewage treatment plant resulted the complete removal of biologically degradable fraction of dissolved SS. More than 94.5% of the total COD in waste water purified fractions were biologically decomposable (SI + XI. Moreover, based on the analysis of studies the following soil removal was found: BOD5 – 99.4%, COD – 92.9%, total nitrogen – 93.4%, total phosphorus – 92%. After waste water treatment, ammonia nitrogen was completely removed while the nitrate concentration increased to 4.6 mg N/dm3.

  13. Microwave-processed nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite: simultaneous enhancement of mechanical and biological properties. (United States)

    Bose, Susmita; Dasgupta, Sudip; Tarafder, Solaiman; Bandyopadhyay, Amit


    Despite the excellent bioactivity of hydroxyapatite (HA) ceramics, poor mechanical strength has limited the applications of these materials primarily to coatings and other non-load-bearing areas as bone grafts. Using synthesized HA nanopowder, dense compacts with grain sizes in the nanometer to micrometer range were processed via microwave sintering between 1000 and 1150 degrees C for 20 min. Here we demonstrate that the mechanical properties, such as compressive strength, hardness and indentation fracture toughness, of HA compacts increased with a decrease in grain size. HA with 168 +/- 86 nm grain size showed the highest compressive strength of 395 +/- 42 MPa, hardness of 8.4+/-0.4 GPa and indentation fracture toughness of 1.9 +/- 0.2 MPa m(1/2). To study the in vitro biological properties, HA compacts with grain size between 168 nm and 1.16 microm were assessed for in vitro bone cell-material interactions with human osteoblast cell line. Vinculin protein expression for cell attachment and bone cell proliferation using MTT assay showed that surfaces with finer grains provided better bone cell-material interactions than coarse-grained samples. Our results indicate simultaneous improvements in mechanical and biological properties in microwave sintered HA compacts with nanoscale grain size.

  14. Application of combined physicochemical and biological processes for enhanced treatment of avermectin fermentation wastewater. (United States)

    Yu, Anfeng; Huang, Pengyu; Gui, Dawei; Wang, Haisheng; Feng, Quan; Chu, Libing; Xing, Xin-Hui


    This paper aimed at developing the enhanced biological treatment processes for treating avermectin fermentation wastewater (AFW). After UASB treatment and chemical coagulation, the pretreated AFW was subsequently flowed into a rCAA reactor (reactor with repeated coupling of aerobes and anaerobes using macroporous carriers) system for further pollutant degradation and excess sludge reduction. By the treatment with chemical coagulation, COD, total nitrogen and total phosphorus concentration of treated AFW were eliminated to 550-700 mg/L, 130-160 mg/L and 1 mg/L, respectively, and the dark color of the wastewater was greatly bleached. After this decolorized wastewater was treated by the following rCAA bioreactor, the COD could be reduced to around 200-300 mg/L, while the further decrease of COD less than 200 mg/L was difficult. The Biolog analysis and OUR test for the water treated by rCAA bioreactor demonstrated that the effluent from chemical coagulation contained some unknown compounds with low biodegradability and would simplify the microbial community in the subsequent rCAA reactor.

  15. Safety assessment and biological effects of a new cold processed SilEmulsion for dermatological purpose. (United States)

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


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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Raposo


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

  17. Process of inorganic nitrogen transformation and design of kinetics model in the biological aerated filter reactor. (United States)

    Yan, Gang; Xu, Xia; Yao, Lirong; Lu, Liqiao; Zhao, Tingting; Zhang, Wenyi


    As one of the plug-flow reactors, biological aerated filter (BAF) reactor was divided into four sampling sectors to understand the characteristics of elemental nitrogen transformation during the reaction process, and then the different characteristics of elemental nitrogen transformation caused by different NH(3)-N loadings, biological quantities and activities in each section were obtained. The results showed that the total transformation ratio in the nitrifying reactor was more than 90% in the absence of any organic carbon resource, at the same time, more than 65% NH(3)-N in the influent were nitrified at the filter height of 70 cm below under the conditions of the influent runoff 9-19 L/h, the gas-water ratio 4-5:1, the dissolved oxygen 3.0-5.8 mg/L and the NH(3)-N load 0.28-0.48 kg NH(3)-N/m(3) d. On the base of the Eckenfelder mode, the kinetics equation of the NH(3)-N transformation along the reactor was S(e)=S(0) exp(-0.0134D/L(1.2612)).

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ogunlaja, O.O., E-mail:; Parker, W.J., E-mail:


    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.

  19. Composting of biological waste. Processes and utilisation. Summary report; Bioabfallkompostierung. Verfahren und Verwertung. Kurzfassung

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gronauer, A.; Claassen, N.; Ebertseder, T.; Fischer, P.; Gutser, R.; Helm, M.; Popp, L.; Schoen, H.


    The project investigated environmentally compatible concepts for processing and utilisation of biological waste by means of composting and spreading on agriculataural and gardening plots. The project comprised three parts: Composting techniques, applications of compost in agriculture and gardening, and applications in landscaping. This volume comprises the summaries of the three part-projects. (orig./SR) [Deutsch] Die umweltschonende Aufbereitung und Verwertung von Bioabfall durch Kompostierung und Rueckfuehrung auf landwirtschaftliche und gaertnerische Flaechen wurde untersucht. Dieses Projekt war dreigeteilt in die Bereiche der Kompostierung selbst, der Anwendung des Komposts in der Landwirtschaft und seiner Anwendung im Gartenbau sowie im Garten- und Landschaftsbau (GaLa-Bau). Die vorliegende Schrift enthaelt die Zusammenfassung der genannten drei Teilberichte. (orig./SR)

  20. Biological impact of preschool music classes on processing speech in noise. (United States)

    Strait, Dana L; Parbery-Clark, Alexandra; O'Connell, Samantha; Kraus, Nina


    Musicians have increased resilience to the effects of noise on speech perception and its neural underpinnings. We do not know, however, how early in life these enhancements arise. We compared auditory brainstem responses to speech in noise in 32 preschool children, half of whom were engaged in music training. Thirteen children returned for testing one year later, permitting the first longitudinal assessment of subcortical auditory function with music training. Results indicate emerging neural enhancements in musically trained preschoolers for processing speech in noise. Longitudinal outcomes reveal that children enrolled in music classes experience further increased neural resilience to background noise following one year of continued training compared to nonmusician peers. Together, these data reveal enhanced development of neural mechanisms undergirding speech-in-noise perception in preschoolers undergoing music training and may indicate a biological impact of music training on auditory function during early childhood.

  1. Combined photochemical and biological processes for the treatment of linear alkylbenzene sulfonate in water. (United States)

    Mehrvar, Mehrab; Tabrizi, Gelareh Bankian


    In this study, the effects of photochemical pre-treatment (pilot-plant UV/H2O2 process) of linear alkylbenzene sulfonate (LAS) on its subsequent biological treatment were examined. It was observed that the photochemical pre-treatment of the LAS solution did not increase its biodegradability. Moreover, the effects of acclimated microorganisms on the biodegradability of the LAS solution were also studied. It was observed that the acclimated activated sludge increased the biodegradation of the LAS solution. However, due to the presence of some intermediates in the effluent of the photoreactor, the biodegradability of this effluent was less than the biodegradability of the untreated LAS solution with the same concentration of the LAS in the effluent of the photoreactor.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. I. Lazarev


    Full Text Available Retained on a membrane solute in reverse osmosis separation of biological fluids at the surface of the membrane gradually accumulates and forms a boundary layer, where its concentration is higher than in the bulk. Increased concentration of solute in the solution at the membrane surface causes a diffusive flow of solids from the membrane surface into the bulk solution. After some time in the system t is a stationary state. A convective flow of solute to the membrane surface will be balanced by the sum of the fluxes of solute through the membrane and from the membrane surface into the bulk solution, i.e. in the case of concentration polarization is formed an edge of the diffusion layer. It is established that the concentration-polarization in reverse osmosis separation of the aqueous biological fluids biochemical production is influenced by the flow rate of solvent and the mass transfer coefficient. Experimental study allowed to characterize that by using the process of reverse osmosis can effectively divided, clear, and contaravati industrial solutions biochemical industries. Data at a rate of detention allow to evaluate the influence of concentration polarization on the efficiency of the reverse osmosis separation of industrial solutions. As a result of systematization and evaluation of experimental data and dependencies at a rate of detention found that with increasing the concentration, the rate of detention of solutes decreases. Based on the analysis and modification of the proposed equation for theoretical calculation of detention. Theoretical description of the coefficient detention accurately adequately calculated the modified equation N. V. Churaev, B. V. Deryaguin and V. M. Starov. The numerical values of the empirical coefficients, to calculate and predict the odds of arrest for a similar membrane separation processes industrial solutions. Values obtained correlation coefficients. The correlation coefficients specify that the rate of

  3. Biological phosphorus removal in sequencing batch reactor with single-stage oxic process. (United States)

    Wang, Dong-Bo; Li, Xiao-Ming; Yang, Qi; Zeng, Guang-Ming; Liao, De-Xiang; Zhang, Jie


    The performance of biological phosphorus removal (BPR) in a sequencing batch reactor (SBR) with single-stage oxic process was investigated using simulated municipal wastewater. The experimental results showed that BPR could be achieved in a SBR without anaerobic phase, which was conventionally considered as a key phase for BPR. Phosphorus (P) concentration 0.22-1.79 mg L(-1) in effluent can be obtained after 4h aeration when P concentration in influent was about 15-20 mg L(-1), the dissolved oxygen (DO) was controlled at 3+/-0.2 mg L(-1) during aerobic phase and pH was maintained 7+/-0.1, which indicated the efficiencies of P removal were achieved 90% above. Experimental results also showed that P was mainly stored in the form of intracellular storage of polyphosphate (poly-P), and about 207.235 mg phosphates have been removed by the discharge of rich-phosphorus sludge for each SBR cycle. However, the energy storage poly-beta-hydroxyalkanoates (PHA) was almost kept constant at a low level (5-6 mg L(-1)) during the process. Those results showed that phosphate could be transformed to poly-P with single-stage oxic process without PHA accumulation, and BPR could be realized in net phosphate removal.

  4. Video-rate processing in tomographic phase microscopy of biological cells using CUDA. (United States)

    Dardikman, Gili; Habaza, Mor; Waller, Laura; Shaked, Natan T


    We suggest a new implementation for rapid reconstruction of three-dimensional (3-D) refractive index (RI) maps of biological cells acquired by tomographic phase microscopy (TPM). The TPM computational reconstruction process is extremely time consuming, making the analysis of large data sets unreasonably slow and the real-time 3-D visualization of the results impossible. Our implementation uses new phase extraction, phase unwrapping and Fourier slice algorithms, suitable for efficient CPU or GPU implementations. The experimental setup includes an external off-axis interferometric module connected to an inverted microscope illuminated coherently. We used single cell rotation by micro-manipulation to obtain interferometric projections from 73 viewing angles over a 180° angular range. Our parallel algorithms were implemented using Nvidia's CUDA C platform, running on Nvidia's Tesla K20c GPU. This implementation yields, for the first time to our knowledge, a 3-D reconstruction rate higher than video rate of 25 frames per second for 256 × 256-pixel interferograms with 73 different projection angles (64 × 64 × 64 output). This allows us to calculate additional cellular parameters, while still processing faster than video rate. This technique is expected to find uses for real-time 3-D cell visualization and processing, while yielding fast feedback for medical diagnosis and cell sorting.

  5. Ozone-biological activated carbon as a pretreatment process for reverse osmosis brine treatment and recovery. (United States)

    Lee, Lai Yoke; Ng, How Yong; Ong, Say Leong; Hu, Jiang Yong; Tao, Guihe; Kekre, Kiran; Viswanath, Balakrishnan; Lay, Winson; Seah, Harry


    Ozonation was used in this study to improve biodegradability of RO brine from water reclamation facilities. An ozone dosage ranging from 3 to 10 mg O(3)/L and contact times of 10 and 20 min in batch studies were found to increase the biodegradability (BOD(5)/TOC ratio) of the RO brine by 1.8-3.5 times. At the same time, total organic carbon (TOC) removal was in the range of 5.3-24.5%. The lab-scale ozone-biological activated carbon (BAC) at an ozone dosage of 6.0mg O(3)/L with 20-min contact time was able to achieve 3 times higher TOC removal compared to using BAC alone. Further processing with Capacitive Deionization (CDI) process was able to generate a product water with better water quality than the RO feed water, i.e., with more than 80% ions removal and a lower TOC concentration. The ozone-BAC pretreatment has the potential of reducing fouling in the CDI process.

  6. Utilization of the cyanobacteria Anabaena sp CH1 in biological carbon dioxide mitigation processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chiang, C.L.; Lee, C.M.; Chen, P.C. [Hungkuang University, Taichung (Taiwan)


    Before switching totally to alternative fuel stage, CO{sub 2} mitigation process has considered a transitional strategy for combustion of fossil fuels inevitably. In comparison to other CO{sub 2} mitigation options, such as oceanic or geologic injection, the biological photosynthetic process would present a far superior and sustainable solution under both environmental and social considerations. The utilization of the cyanobacteria Anabaena sp. CH1 in carbon dioxide mitigation processes is analyzed in our research. It was found that an original developed photobioreactor with internal light source exhibits high light utilization. Anabaena sp. CH1 demonstrates excellent CO{sub 2} tolerance even at 15% CO{sub 2} level. This enables flue gas from power plant to be directly introduced to Anabaena sp. CH1 culture. Double light intensity and increased 47% CO{sub 2} bubble retention time could enhance CO{sub 2} removal efficiencies by 79% and 67%, respectively. A maximum CO{sub 2} fixation rate of 1.01 g CO{sub 2} L{sup -1} day{sup -1} was measured experimentally.

  7. The consequence of biologic graft processing on blood interface biocompatibility and mechanics. (United States)

    Van de Walle, Aurore B; Uzarski, Joseph S; McFetridge, Peter S


    Processing ex vivo derived tissues to reduce immunogenicity is an effective approach to create biologically complex materials for vascular reconstruction. Due to the sensitivity of small diameter vascular grafts to occlusive events, the effect of graft processing on critical parameters for graft patency, such as peripheral cell adhesion and wall mechanics, requires detailed analysis. Isolated human umbilical vein sections were used as model allogenic vascular scaffolds that were processed with either: 1. sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS), 2. ethanol/acetone (EtAc), or 3. glutaraldehyde (Glu). Changes in material mechanics were assessed via uniaxial tensile testing. Peripheral cell adhesion to the opaque grafting material was evaluated using an innovative flow chamber that allows direct observation of the blood-graft interface under physiological shear conditions. All treatments modified the grafts tensile strain and stiffness properties, with physiological modulus values decreasing from Glu 240±12 kPa to SDS 210±6 kPa and EtAc 140±3 kPa, Papplied to the umbilical vein scaffold were shown to modify structural mechanics and cell adhesion properties, with the EtAc treatment reducing thrombotic events relative to SDS treated samples. This approach allows time and cost effective prescreening of clinically relevant grafting materials to assess initial cell reactivity.

  8. Inspiring Student Self-Motivation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virginia Brackett


    Full Text Available While normally appreciative of the invitation to join colleagues in a discussion of pedagogy and what “works” in the classroom, I have in most instances reluctantly participated in discussion of student motivation. I dip my toe into this philosophical quagmire only if permitted license to substitute the phrase student inspiration in place of student motivation. I also find it helpful to turn the rhetorical tables, as it were, and consider self-motivation on the part of students. The concept of individuals who hold some sense of self that a classroom mentor may nurture through student inspiration is one in which I place a modicum of trust. To “inspire” is literally to “breathe in,” to actively pull sustenance from a proffered external source. Active student determination based on some sense of self may couple with instructor inspiration to promote academic success.

  9. Functional knowledge transfer for high-accuracy prediction of under-studied biological processes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher Y Park

    Full Text Available A key challenge in genetics is identifying the functional roles of genes in pathways. Numerous functional genomics techniques (e.g. machine learning that predict protein function have been developed to address this question. These methods generally build from existing annotations of genes to pathways and thus are often unable to identify additional genes participating in processes that are not already well studied. Many of these processes are well studied in some organism, but not necessarily in an investigator's organism of interest. Sequence-based search methods (e.g. BLAST have been used to transfer such annotation information between organisms. We demonstrate that functional genomics can complement traditional sequence similarity to improve the transfer of gene annotations between organisms. Our method transfers annotations only when functionally appropriate as determined by genomic data and can be used with any prediction algorithm to combine transferred gene function knowledge with organism-specific high-throughput data to enable accurate function prediction. We show that diverse state-of-art machine learning algorithms leveraging functional knowledge transfer (FKT dramatically improve their accuracy in predicting gene-pathway membership, particularly for processes with little experimental knowledge in an organism. We also show that our method compares favorably to annotation transfer by sequence similarity. Next, we deploy FKT with state-of-the-art SVM classifier to predict novel genes to 11,000 biological processes across six diverse organisms and expand the coverage of accurate function predictions to processes that are often ignored because of a dearth of annotated genes in an organism. Finally, we perform in vivo experimental investigation in Danio rerio and confirm the regulatory role of our top predicted novel gene, wnt5b, in leftward cell migration during heart development. FKT is immediately applicable to many bioinformatics

  10. A Practical Approach to Quantitative Processing and Analysis of Small Biological Structures by Fluorescent Imaging (United States)

    Noller, Crystal M.; Boulina, Maria; McNamara, George; Szeto, Angela; McCabe, Philip M.


    Standards in quantitative fluorescent imaging are vaguely recognized and receive insufficient discussion. A common best practice is to acquire images at Nyquist rate, where highest signal frequency is assumed to be the highest obtainable resolution of the imaging system. However, this particular standard is set to insure that all obtainable information is being collected. The objective of the current study was to demonstrate that for quantification purposes, these correctly set acquisition rates can be redundant; instead, linear size of the objects of interest can be used to calculate sufficient information density in the image. We describe optimized image acquisition parameters and unbiased methods for processing and quantification of medium-size cellular structures. Sections of rabbit aortas were immunohistochemically stained to identify and quantify sympathetic varicosities, >2 μm in diameter. Images were processed to reduce background noise and segment objects using free, open-access software. Calculations of the optimal sampling rate for the experiment were based on the size of the objects of interest. The effect of differing sampling rates and processing techniques on object quantification was demonstrated. Oversampling led to a substantial increase in file size, whereas undersampling hindered reliable quantification. Quantification of raw and incorrectly processed images generated false structures, misrepresenting the underlying data. The current study emphasizes the importance of defining image-acquisition parameters based on the structure(s) of interest. The proposed postacquisition processing steps effectively removed background and noise, allowed for reliable quantification, and eliminated user bias. This customizable, reliable method for background subtraction and structure quantification provides a reproducible tool for researchers across biologic disciplines. PMID:27182204

  11. The Precambrian Biogeochemical Carbon Isotopic Record: Contributions of Thermal Versus Biological Processes (United States)

    DesMarais, David J.; DeVincenzi, Donald L. (Technical Monitor)


    Superplumes offer a new approach for understanding global C cycles. Isotopes help to discern the impacts of geological, environmental and biological processes ujpun the evolution of these cycles. For example, C-13/C-12 values of coeval sedimentary organics and carbonates give global estimates of the fraction of C buried as organics (Forg), which today lies near 0.2. Before Oxygenic photosynthesis arose, our biosphere obtained reducing power for biosynthesis solely from thermal volatiles and rock alteration. Thus Forg was dominated by the mantle redox state, which has remained remarkably constant for greater than Gy. Recent data confirm that the long-term change in Forg had been small, indicating that the mantle redox buffer remains important even today. Oxygenic photosynthesis enabled life to obtain additional reducing power by splitting the water molecule. Accordingly, biological organic production rose above the level constrained by the mantle-derived flux of reduced species. For example, today, chemoautotrophs harvesting energy from hydrothermal emanations can synthesize at most between 0.2 x 10(exp 12) and 2x 10(exp 12) mol C yr-1 of organic C globally. In contrast, global photosynthetic productivity is estimated at 9000 x 10(exp 12) mol C yr-1. Occasionally photosynthetic productivity did contribute to dramatically -elevated Forg values (to 0.4 or more) as evidenced by very high carbonate C-13/C-12. The interplay between biological, tectonic and other environmental factors is illustrated by the mid-Archean to mid-Proterozoic isotopic record. The relatively constant C-13/C-12 values of Archean carbonates support the view that photosynthetically-driven Forg increases were not yet possible. In contrast, major excursions in C-13/C-12, and thus also in Forg, during the early Proterozoic confirmed the global importance of oxygenic photosynthesis by that time. Remarkably, the superplume event at 1.9 Ga did not trigger another major Forg increase, despite the

  12. Expanding biological data standards development processes for US IOOS: visual line transect observing community for mammal, bird, and turtle data (United States)

    Fornwall, M.; Gisiner, R.; Simmons, S. E.; Moustahfid, Hassan; Canonico, G.; Halpin, P.; Goldstein, P.; Fitch, R.; Weise, M.; Cyr, N.; Palka, D.; Price, J.; Collins, D.


    The US Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) has recently adopted standards for biological core variables in collaboration with the US Geological Survey/Ocean Biogeographic Information System (USGS/OBIS-USA) and other federal and non-federal partners. In this Community White Paper (CWP) we provide a process to bring into IOOS a rich new source of biological observing data, visual line transect surveys, and to establish quality data standards for visual line transect observations, an important source of at-sea bird, turtle and marine mammal observation data. The processes developed through this exercise will be useful for other similar biogeographic observing efforts, such as passive acoustic point and line transect observations, tagged animal data, and mark-recapture (photo-identification) methods. Furthermore, we suggest that the processes developed through this exercise will serve as a catalyst for broadening involvement by the larger marine biological data community within the goals and processes of IOOS.

  13. SABRE: a bio-inspired fault-tolerant electronic architecture. (United States)

    Bremner, P; Liu, Y; Samie, M; Dragffy, G; Pipe, A G; Tempesti, G; Timmis, J; Tyrrell, A M


    As electronic devices become increasingly complex, ensuring their reliable, fault-free operation is becoming correspondingly more challenging. It can be observed that, in spite of their complexity, biological systems are highly reliable and fault tolerant. Hence, we are motivated to take inspiration for biological systems in the design of electronic ones. In SABRE (self-healing cellular architectures for biologically inspired highly reliable electronic systems), we have designed a bio-inspired fault-tolerant hierarchical architecture for this purpose. As in biology, the foundation for the whole system is cellular in nature, with each cell able to detect faults in its operation and trigger intra-cellular or extra-cellular repair as required. At the next level in the hierarchy, arrays of cells are configured and controlled as function units in a transport triggered architecture (TTA), which is able to perform partial-dynamic reconfiguration to rectify problems that cannot be solved at the cellular level. Each TTA is, in turn, part of a larger multi-processor system which employs coarser grain reconfiguration to tolerate faults that cause a processor to fail. In this paper, we describe the details of operation of each layer of the SABRE hierarchy, and how these layers interact to provide a high systemic level of fault tolerance.

  14. Interconnection of reactive oxygen species chemistry across the interfaces of atmospheric, environmental, and biological processes. (United States)

    Anglada, Josep M; Martins-Costa, Marilia; Francisco, Joseph S; Ruiz-López, Manuel F


    Oxidation reactions are ubiquitous and play key roles in the chemistry of the atmosphere, in water treatment processes, and in aerobic organisms. Ozone (O3), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), hydrogen polyoxides (H2Ox, x > 2), associated hydroxyl and hydroperoxyl radicals (HOx = OH and HO2), and superoxide and ozonide anions (O2(-) and O3(-), respectively) are the primary oxidants in these systems. They are commonly classified as reactive oxygen species (ROS). Atmospheric chemistry is driven by a complex system of chain reactions of species, including nitrogen oxides, hydroxyl and hydroperoxide radicals, alkoxy and peroxy radicals, and ozone. HOx radicals contribute to keeping air clean, but in polluted areas, the ozone concentration increases and creates a negative impact on plants and animals. Indeed, ozone concentration is used to assess air quality worldwide. Clouds have a direct effect on the chemical composition of the atmosphere. On one hand, cloud droplets absorb many trace atmospheric gases, which can be scavenged by rain and fog. On the other hand, ionic species can form in this medium, which makes the chemistry of the atmosphere richer and more complex. Furthermore, recent studies have suggested that air-cloud interfaces might have a significant impact on the overall chemistry of the troposphere. Despite the large differences in molecular composition, concentration, and thermodynamic conditions among atmospheric, environmental, and biological systems, the underlying chemistry involving ROS has many similarities. In this Account, we examine ROS and discuss the chemical characteristics common to all of these systems. In water treatment, ROS are key components of an important subset of advanced oxidation processes. Ozonation, peroxone chemistry, and Fenton reactions play important roles in generating sufficient amounts of hydroxyl radicals to purify wastewater. Biochemical processes within living organisms also involve ROS. These species can come from pollutants in

  15. Price Trackers Inspired by Immune Memory

    CERN Document Server

    Wilson, William; Aickelin, Uwe


    In this paper we outline initial concepts for an immune inspired algorithm to evaluate price time series data. The proposed solution evolves a short term pool of trackers dynamically through a process of proliferation and mutation, with each member attempting to map to trends in price movements. Successful trackers feed into a long term memory pool that can generalise across repeating trend patterns. Tests are performed to examine the algorithm's ability to successfully identify trends in a small data set. The influence of the long term memory pool is then examined. We find the algorithm is able to identify price trends presented successfully and efficiently.

  16. A biological/chemical process for reduced waste and energy consumption: caprolactam production. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    A biological/chemical process for converting cyclohexane into caprolactam was investigated: microorganisms in a bioreactor would be used to convert cyclohexane into caprolactone followed by chemical synthesis of caprolactam using ammonia. Four microorganisms were isolated from natural soil and water, that can utilize cyclohexane as a sole source of C and energy for growth. They were shown to have the correct metabolic intermediates and enzymes to convert cyclohexane into cyclohexanol, cyclohexanone, and caprolactone. Genetic techniques to create and select for caprolactone hydrolase negative-mutants were developed; those are used to convert cyclohexane into caprolactone but, because of the block, are unable to metabolize the caprolactone further. Because of a new nylon carpet reycle process and the long time frame for a totally new bioprocess, a limited study was done to evaluate whether a simplified bioprocess to convert cyclohexanol into cyclohexanone or caprolactone was feasible; growth rates and key enzyme levels were measured in a collection of microorganisms that metabolize cyclohexanol to determine if the bioactivity is high enough to support an economical cyclohexanol bioprocess. Although these microorganisms had sufficient bioactivity, they could tolerate only low levels (<1%) of cyclohexanol and thus are not suitable for developing a cost effective bioprocess because of the high cost of dilute product recovery.

  17. The impact of environmental stress on male reproductive development in plants: biological processes and molecular mechanisms. (United States)

    De Storme, Nico; Geelen, Danny


    In plants, male reproductive development is extremely sensitive to adverse climatic environments and (a)biotic stress. Upon exposure to stress, male gametophytic organs often show morphological, structural and metabolic alterations that typically lead to meiotic defects or premature spore abortion and male reproductive sterility. Depending on the type of stress involved (e.g. heat, cold, drought) and the duration of stress exposure, the underlying cellular defect is highly variable and either involves cytoskeletal alterations, tapetal irregularities, altered sugar utilization, aberrations in auxin metabolism, accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS; oxidative stress) or the ectopic induction of programmed cell death (PCD). In this review, we present the critically stress-sensitive stages of male sporogenesis (meiosis) and male gametogenesis (microspore development), and discuss the corresponding biological processes involved and the resulting alterations in male reproduction. In addition, this review also provides insights into the molecular and/or hormonal regulation of the environmental stress sensitivity of male reproduction and outlines putative interaction(s) between the different processes involved.

  18. Development of Biological Coal Gasification (MicGAS Process). Topical report, July 1991--February 1993

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Srivastava, K.C.


    Laboratory and bench scale reactor research carried out during the report period confirms the feasibility of biomethanation of Texas lignite (TxL) and some other low-rank coals to methane by specifically developed unique anaerobic microbial consortia. The data obtained demonstrates specificity of a particular microbial consortium to a given lignite. Development of a suitable microbial consortium is the key to the success of the process. The Mic-1 consortium was developed to tolerate higher coal loadings of 1 and 5% TxL in comparison to initial loadings of 0.01% and 0.1% TxL. Moreover, the reaction period was reduced from 60 days to 14 to 21 days. The cost of the culture medium for bioconversion was reduced by studying the effect of different growth factors on the biomethanation capability of Mic-1 consortium. Four different bench scale bioreactor configurations, namely Rotating Biological Contactor (RBC), Upflow Fluidized Bed Reactor (UFBR), Trickle Bed Reactor (TBR), and Continuously Stirred Tank Reactor (CSTR) were evaluated for scale up studies. Preliminary results indicated highest biomethanation of TxL by the Mic-1 consortium in the CSTR, and lowest in the trickle bed reactor. However, highest methane production and process efficiency were obtained in the RBC.

  19. Cruciform structures are a common DNA feature important for regulating biological processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arrowsmith Cheryl


    Full Text Available Abstract DNA cruciforms play an important role in the regulation of natural processes involving DNA. These structures are formed by inverted repeats, and their stability is enhanced by DNA supercoiling. Cruciform structures are fundamentally important for a wide range of biological processes, including replication, regulation of gene expression, nucleosome structure and recombination. They also have been implicated in the evolution and development of diseases including cancer, Werner's syndrome and others. Cruciform structures are targets for many architectural and regulatory proteins, such as histones H1 and H5, topoisomerase IIβ, HMG proteins, HU, p53, the proto-oncogene protein DEK and others. A number of DNA-binding proteins, such as the HMGB-box family members, Rad54, BRCA1 protein, as well as PARP-1 polymerase, possess weak sequence specific DNA binding yet bind preferentially to cruciform structures. Some of these proteins are, in fact, capable of inducing the formation of cruciform structures upon DNA binding. In this article, we review the protein families that are involved in interacting with and regulating cruciform structures, including (a the junction-resolving enzymes, (b DNA repair proteins and transcription factors, (c proteins involved in replication and (d chromatin-associated proteins. The prevalence of cruciform structures and their roles in protein interactions, epigenetic regulation and the maintenance of cell homeostasis are also discussed.

  20. Combined Fenton oxidation and aerobic biological processes for treating a surfactant wastewater containing abundant sulfate. (United States)

    Wang, Xiao-Jun; Song, Yang; Mai, Jun-Sheng


    The present study is to investigate the treatment of a surfactant wastewater containing abundant sulfate by Fenton oxidation and aerobic biological processes. The operating conditions have been optimized. Working at an initial pH value of 8, a Fe2+ dosage of 600mgL(-1) and a H2O2 dosage of 120mgL(-1), the chemical oxidation demand (COD) and linear alkylbenzene sulfonate (LAS) were decreased from 1500 and 490mgL(-1) to 230 and 23mgL(-1) after 40min of Fenton oxidation, respectively. Advanced oxidation pretreatment using Fenton reagent was very effective at enhancing the biodegradability of this kind of wastewater. The wastewater was further treated by a bio-chemical treatment process based on an immobilized biomass reactor with a hydraulic detention time (HRT) of 20h after Fenton oxidation pretreatment under the optimal operating conditions. It was found that the COD and LAS of the final effluent were less than 100 and 5mgL(-1), corresponding to a removal efficiencies of over 94% and 99%, respectively.

  1. REE incorporation and behaviour in aquatic turtles as a consequence of environmental exposure and biological processes (United States)

    Censi, P.; Randazzo, L. A.; D'Angelo, S.; Cuttitta, A.; Saiano, F.


    features in whole blood samples suggest that behaviour of these elements can be influenced by vital effects, probably related to the phosphate deposition during formation of turtle skeleton. In order to corroborate this suggestion a portion of esoskeleton sample coming from an Emys trinacris individual was analysed and REE concentrations normalised to the environmental water. Observed features of REE pattern from this material strongly agree with above the mentioned hypothesis being MREE enriched, from Nd to Ho, with respect to LREE and HREE. Therefore collected data indicate that REE contents in blood of Emys trinacris is influenced by exposure to environmental conditions but elemental behaviour in whole blood is driven by biological processes, probably associated to formation of esoskeleton that can be subjected to the incorporation of radionuclides.

  2. Kinetic analysis of anaerobic phosphorus release during biological phosphorus removal process

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    DOU Junfeng; LUO Guyuan; LIU Xiang


    Enhanced biological phosphorus removal(EBPR)is a commonly used and sustainable method for phosphorus removal from wastewater.Poly-β-hydroxybutyrate(PHB),polyphosphate,and glycogen are three kinds of intracellular storage polymers in phosphorus accumulation organisms.The variation of these polymers under different conditions has an apparent influence on anaerobic phosphorus release,which is very important for controlling the performance of EBPR.To obtain the mechanism and kinetic character of anaerobic phosphorus release,a series of batch experiments were performed using the excessively aerated sludge from the aerobic unit of the biological phosphorus removal system in this study.The results showed that the volatile suspended solid(vss)had an increasing trend,while the mixed liquid suspended sludge(MLSS)and ashes were reduced during the anaerobic phosphorus release process.The interruption of anaerobic HAc-uptake and phosphorus-release occurs when the glycogen in the phosphorus-accumulating-organisms is exhausted.Under the condition of lower initial HAc-COD,HAc became the limiting factor after some time for anaerobic HAc uptake.Under the condition of higher initial HAc-COD,HAc uptake was stopped because of the depletion of glycogen in the microorganisms.The mean ratio of △ρP/△ρPHB,△ρGLY/△ρPHB,△ρP/△COD,and △ρPHB/△COD was 0.48,0.50,0.44.and 0.92.respectively,which was nearly the same as the theoretical value.The calibrated kinetic parameters of the HAc-uptake and phosphorus-release model were evaluated as Kgly was 0.005,and KCOD was 3 mg/L.An apparently linear correlation was observed between the ratio of △ρP/△COD and pH of the solution,and the equation between them was obtained in this study.

  3. Biological Effects of bFGF on Murine Endometrium in the Process of Blastocyst Implantation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    赤晶; 高英茂; 刘凯; 李少玲; 张保华; 邴鲁军


    Objective To study the biological effects of basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) in the process of embryo implantation in mouse Materials & Methods The transcription and translocation of bFGF and its receptor (Flg) in endometrium of 60 Kunming mice were detected with the methods of im munohistochemistry and hybridization in situ. Endometrial tissue was obtained on the day 4 from pregnancy mice. The cells were cultured and attached in 1 : 1 F12/DMEM (vol/vol) supplemented with 10% FBS for 24 h The medium supplemented with 1% FBS and bFGF (50 ng/mL), anti-bFGF antibody (250 ng/mL) or anti-Flg antibody (250 ng/mL) was added in different culture wells. At different culture stages, the biological effect of bFGF on cell survival and expression of LN, FN and c-myc was detected by using MTT analysis, immunohistochemistry and hybridization in situ.Results bFGF and Flg was located in luminal and glandual cells on day 4 and 5 of pregnancy. Embryonic implantation was accompanied by increased bFGF and its recep tor in decidual cell around implantation site, in which low level of bFGF and its recep tor was apparent on day 7 and 8 of pregnancy. In vitro, the OD value in culture wells containing bFGF was significantly higher than that in control group. Exogenous bFGF promoted the expression of LN, FN and c-myc.Conclusion Changes in the cell-specific distribution of bFGF and the effects of bFGF on cultured endometrial cells imply a multifunctional role of the growth factor in uterine cell proliferation, differentiation and embryonic implantation.

  4. Extended morphological processing: a practical method for automatic spot detection of biological markers from microscopic images

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kimori Yoshitaka


    Full Text Available Abstract Background A reliable extraction technique for resolving multiple spots in light or electron microscopic images is essential in investigations of the spatial distribution and dynamics of specific proteins inside cells and tissues. Currently, automatic spot extraction and characterization in complex microscopic images poses many challenges to conventional image processing methods. Results A new method to extract closely located, small target spots from biological images is proposed. This method starts with a simple but practical operation based on the extended morphological top-hat transformation to subtract an uneven background. The core of our novel approach is the following: first, the original image is rotated in an arbitrary direction and each rotated image is opened with a single straight line-segment structuring element. Second, the opened images are unified and then subtracted from the original image. To evaluate these procedures, model images of simulated spots with closely located targets were created and the efficacy of our method was compared to that of conventional morphological filtering methods. The results showed the better performance of our method. The spots of real microscope images can be quantified to confirm that the method is applicable in a given practice. Conclusions Our method achieved effective spot extraction under various image conditions, including aggregated target spots, poor signal-to-noise ratio, and large variations in the background intensity. Furthermore, it has no restrictions with respect to the shape of the extracted spots. The features of our method allow its broad application in biological and biomedical image information analysis.

  5. Aurelia aurita bio-inspired tilt sensor (United States)

    Smith, Colin; Villanueva, Alex; Priya, Shashank


    The quickly expanding field of mobile robots, unmanned underwater vehicles, and micro-air vehicles urgently needs a cheap and effective means for measuring vehicle inclination. Commonly, tilt or inclination has been mathematically derived from accelerometers; however, there is inherent error in any indirect measurement. This paper reports a bio-inspired tilt sensor that mimics the natural balance organ of jellyfish, called the ‘statocyst’. Biological statocysts from the species Aurelia aurita were characterized by scanning electron microscopy to investigate the morphology and size of the natural sensor. An artificial tilt sensor was then developed by using printed electronics that incorporates a novel voltage divider concept in conjunction with small surface mount devices. This sensor was found to have minimum sensitivity of 4.21° with a standard deviation of 1.77°. These results open the possibility of developing elegant tilt sensor architecture for both air and water based platforms.

  6. Inspiration: One Percent and Rising (United States)

    Walling, Donovan R.


    Inventor Thomas Edison once famously declared, "Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration." If that's the case, then the students the author witnessed at the International Student Media Festival (ISMF) last November in Orlando, Florida, are geniuses and more. The students in the ISMF pre-conference workshop had much to…

  7. Inversion exercises inspired by mechanics (United States)

    Groetsch, C. W.


    An elementary calculus transform, inspired by the centroid and gyration radius, is introduced as a prelude to the study of more advanced transforms. Analysis of the transform, including its inversion, makes use of several key concepts from basic calculus and exercises in the application and inversion of the transform provide practice in the use of technology in calculus.

  8. The impact of sea water flushing on biological nitrification-denitrification activated sludge sewage treatment process. (United States)

    Yu, S M; Leung, W Y; Ho, K M; Greenfield, P F; Eckenfelder, W W


    The process performance of the two largest activated sludge processes in Hong Kong, the Sha Tin and the Tai Po Sewage Treatment Works (STW), deteriorated in the initial period after the introduction of seawater flushing in 1995 and 1996, respectively. High effluent ammonia nitrogen (NH4-N) and total suspended solids (TSS) in excess of the discharge standards resulted from incomplete nitrification and changes in floc characteristics. A desktop study on the inhibitory effects of salinity, particularly on nitrification, was subsequently conducted using the Tai Po STW operating data. To assist the upgrade of the Sha Tin STW a five-month extensive bench-scale investigation on a simple but flexible modified Ludzack-Ettinger configuration with bio-selector was conducted to quantify the inhibitory effects due to the saline concentration. The Sha Tin STW upgrade consists of restoration of its original design capacity (conventional process) of 205,000 m3/day from its currently much reduced capacity as a Bardenpho process. Only the volume of the existing biological process and clarifier is to be utilized. The saline concentration ranges from 3,500 up to 6,500 mg Cl-/L, both daily and seasonally. High and greatly fluctuating saline concentrations have been known to inhibit nitrification. Design consideration should also be given to the peak daily and seasonal TKN loading of up to three times the average. Although the nitrifiers maximum specific growth rate was significantly reduced to a low 0.25 day(-1), the inhibition was considered to be tolerable with effluent NH4-N and NO3-N consistently at < 1 and < 6 mg/L. The bio-selector was demonstrated to be efficient in control of sludge foaming and bulking with SVI consistently < or = 125 mL/g. Results from the IAWO Model No. 1 and the hydraulic model of the secondary clarifiers allowed overall process capacity maximization. With an anoxic mass fraction of 25-30%, operating sludge age of 9-14 days and SVI < or = 125 mL/g, both the

  9. Coking wastewater treatment for industrial reuse purpose: Combining biological processes with ultrafiltration, nanofiltration and reverse osmosis

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xuewen Jin; Enchao Li; Shuguang Lu; Zhaofu Qiu; Qian Sui


    A full-scale plant using anaerobic,anoxic and oxic processes (A1/A2/O),along with a pilot-scale membrane bioreactor (MBR),nanofiltration (NF) and reverse osmosis (RO) integrated system developed by Shanghai Baosteel Chemical Co.Ltd.,was investigated to treat coking wastewater for industrial reuse over a period of one year.The removals reached 82.5% (COD),89.6% (BOD),99.8% (ammonium nitrogen),99.9% (phenol),44.6% (total cyanide (T-CN)),99.7% (thiocyanide (SCN-)) and 8.9% (fluoride),during the A1/A2/O biological treatment stage,and all parameters were further reduced by over 96.0%,except for fluoride (86.4%),in the final discharge effluent from the currently operating plant.The pilot-scale MBR process reduced the turbidity to less than 0.65 NTU,and most of the toxic organic compounds were degraded or intercepted by the A1/A2/O followed MBR processes.In addition,parameters including COD,T-CN,total nitrogen,fluoride,chloride ion,hardness and conductivity were significantly reduced by the NF-RO system to a level suitable for industrial reuse,with a total water production ratio of 70.7%.However,the concentrates from the NF and RO units were highly polluted and should be disposed of properly or further treated before being discharged.

  10. Advanced low carbon-to-nitrogen ratio wastewater treatment by electrochemical and biological coupling process. (United States)

    Deng, Shihai; Li, Desheng; Yang, Xue; Zhu, Shanbin; Xing, Wei


    Nitrogen pollution in ground and surface water significantly affects the environment and its organisms, thereby leading to an increasingly serious environmental problem. Such pollution is difficult to degrade because of the lack of carbon sources. Therefore, an electrochemical and biological coupling process (EBCP) was developed with a composite catalytic biological carrier (CCBC) and applied in a pilot-scale cylindrical reactor to treat wastewater with a carbon-to-nitrogen (C/N) ratio of 2. The startup process, coupling principle, and dynamic feature of the EBCP were examined along with the effects of hydraulic retention time (HRT), dissolved oxygen (DO), and initial pH on nitrogen removal. A stable coupling system was obtained after 51 days when plenty of biofilms were cultivated on the CCBC without inoculation sludge. Autotrophic denitrification, with [Fe(2+)] and [H] produced by iron-carbon galvanic cells in CCBC as electron donors, was confirmed by equity calculation of CODCr and nitrogen removal. Nitrogen removal efficiency was significantly influenced by HRT, DO, and initial pH with optimal values of 3.5 h, 3.5 ± 0.1 mg L(-1), and 7.5 ± 0.1, respectively. The ammonia, nitrate, and total nitrogen (TN) removal efficiencies of 90.1 to 95.3 %, 90.5 to 99.0 %, and 90.3 to 96.5 % were maintained with corresponding initial concentrations of 40 ± 2 mg L(-1) (NH3-N load of 0.27 ± 0.01 kg NH3-N m(-3) d(-1)), 20 ± 1 mg L(-1), and 60 ± 2 mg L(-1) (TN load of 0.41 ± 0.02 kg TN m(-3) d(-1)). Based on the Eckenfelder model, the kinetics equation of the nitrogen transformation along the reactor was N e  = N 0 exp (-0.04368 h/L(1.8438)). Hence, EBCP is a viable method for advanced low C/N ratio wastewater treatment.

  11. Mapping biological systems to network systems

    CERN Document Server

    Rathore, Heena


    The book presents the challenges inherent in the paradigm shift of network systems from static to highly dynamic distributed systems – it proposes solutions that the symbiotic nature of biological systems can provide into altering networking systems to adapt to these changes. The author discuss how biological systems – which have the inherent capabilities of evolving, self-organizing, self-repairing and flourishing with time – are inspiring researchers to take opportunities from the biology domain and map them with the problems faced in network domain. The book revolves around the central idea of bio-inspired systems -- it begins by exploring why biology and computer network research are such a natural match. This is followed by presenting a broad overview of biologically inspired research in network systems -- it is classified by the biological field that inspired each topic and by the area of networking in which that topic lies. Each case elucidates how biological concepts have been most successfully ...

  12. Processes that Drove the Transition from Chemistry to Biology: Concepts and Evidence (United States)

    Pohorille, Andrew


    above background was evolved in vitro. This enzyme does not look like any contemporary protein. It is very flexible and its structure is kept together just by a single salt bridge between a charged residue and a coordinating zinc. A similar picture emerges from studies of simple transmembrane channels that mimic those in ancestral cells. Again, they are extremely flexible and do not form a conventional pore. Yet, they efficiently mediate ion transport. Studies on simple proteins that are on-going in several laboratories hold promise of revealing crucial links between chemical and biological catalysis and other ubiquitous cell functions. Interaction between composition, growth and division of protobiologically relevant vesicles and metabolic reactions that they encapsulate is an example of coupling between simple functions that promotes reproduction and evolution. Recent studies have demonstrated possible mechanisms by which vesicles might have evolved their composition from fatty acids to phospholipids, thus facilitating a number of new cellular functions. Conversely, it has been also demonstrated that an encapsulated metabolism might drive vesicle division. These are, again, examples of processes that might have driven the transition from chemistry to biology.

  13. Animal-Inspired Sensing for Autonomously Climbing or Avoiding Obstacles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William A. Lewinger


    Full Text Available The way that natural systems navigate their environments with agility, intelligence and efficiency is an inspiration to engineers. Biological attributes such as modes of locomotion, sensory modalities, behaviours and physical appearance have been used as design goals. While methods of locomotion allow robots to move through their environment, the addition of sensing, perception and decision making are necessary to perform this task with autonomy. This paper contrasts how the addition of two separate sensing modalities – tactile antennae and non-contact sensing – and a low-computation, capable microcontroller allow a biologically abstracted mobile robot to make insect-inspired decisions when encountering a shelflike obstacle, navigating a cluttered environment without collision and seeking vision-based goals while avoiding obstacles.

  14. A DO- and pH-Based Early Warning System of Nitrification Inhibition for Biological Nitrogen Removal Processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hyunook Kim


    Full Text Available In Korea, more than 80% of municipal wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs with capacities of 500 m3·d−1 or more are capable of removing nitrogen from wastewater through biological nitrification and denitrification processes. Normally, these biological processes show excellent performance, but if a toxic chemical is present in the influent to a WWTP, the biological processes (especially, the nitrification process may be affected and fail to function normally; nitrifying bacteria are known very vulnerable to toxic substances. Then, the toxic compound as well as the nitrogen in wastewater may be discharged into a receiving water body without any proper treatment. Moreover, it may take significant time for the process to return back its normal state. In this study, a DO- and pH-based strategy to identify potential nitrification inhibition was developed to detect early the inflow of toxic compounds to a biological nitrogen removal process. This strategy utilizes significant changes observed in the oxygen uptake rate and the pH profiles of the mixed liquor when the activity of nitrifying bacteria is inhibited. Using the strategy, the toxicity from test wastewater with 2.5 mg·L−1 Hg2+, 0.5 mg·L−1 allythiourea, or 0.25 mg·L−1 chloroform could be successfully detected.

  15. Removal of Refractory Organics from Biologically Treated Landfill Leachate by Microwave Discharge Electrodeless Lamp Assisted Fenton Process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiuyi Li


    Full Text Available Biologically treated leachate usually contains considerable amount of refractory organics and trace concentrations of xenobiotic pollutants. Removal of refractory organics from biologically treated landfill leachate by a novel microwave discharge electrodeless lamp (MDEL assisted Fenton process was investigated in the present study in comparison to conventional Fenton and ultraviolet Fenton processes. Conventional Fenton and ultraviolet Fenton processes could substantially remove up to 70% of the refractory organics in a membrane bioreactor treated leachate. MDEL assisted Fenton process achieved excellent removal performance of the refractory components, and the effluent chemical oxygen demand concentration was lower than 100 mg L−1. Most organic matters were transformed into smaller compounds with molecular weights less than 1000 Da. Ten different polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons were detected in the biologically treated leachate, most of which were effectively removed by MDEL-Fenton treatment. MDEL-Fenton process provides powerful capability in degradation of refractory and xenobiotic organic pollutants in landfill leachate and could be adopted as a single-stage polishing process for biologically treated landfill leachate to meet the stringent discharge limit.

  16. A Tony Thomas-Inspired Guide to INSPIRE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    O' Connell, Heath B.; /Fermilab


    The SPIRES database was created in the late 1960s to catalogue the high energy physics preprints received by the SLAC Library. In the early 1990s it became the first database on the web and the first website outside of Europe. Although indispensible to the HEP community, its aging software infrastructure is becoming a serious liability. In a joint project involving CERN, DESY, Fermilab and SLAC, a new database, INSPIRE, is being created to replace SPIRES using CERN's modern, open-source Invenio database software. INSPIRE will maintain the content and functionality of SPIRES plus many new features. I describe this evolution from the birth of SPIRES to the current day, noting that the career of Tony Thomas spans this timeline.

  17. Bionic Mechanism and Kinematics Analysis of Hopping Robot Inspired by Locust Jumping

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Diansheng Chen; Junmao Yin; Kai Zhao; Wanjun Zheng; Tianmiao Wang


    A flexible-rigid hopping mechanism which is inspired by the locust jumping was proposed,and its kinematic characteristics were analyzed.A series of experiments were conducted to observe locust morphology and jumping process.According to classic mechanics,the jumping process analysis was conducted to build the relationship of the locust jumping parameters.The take-off phase was divided into four stages in detail.Based on the biological observation and kinematics analysis,a mechanical model was proposed to simulate locust jumping.The forces of the flexible-rigid hopping mechanism at each stage were analyzed.The kinematic analysis using pseudo-rigid-body model was described by D-H method.It is confirmed that the proposed bionic mechanism has the similar performance as the locust hind leg in hopping.Moreover,the jumping angle which decides the jumping process was discussed,and its relation with other parameters was established.A calculation case analysis corroborated the method.The results of this paper show that the proposed bionic mechanism which is inspired by the locust hind limb has an excellent kinematics performance,which can provide a foundation for design and motion planning of the hopping robot.

  18. Social inclusion enhances biological motion processing: a functional near-infrared spectroscopy study. (United States)

    Bolling, Danielle Z; Pelphrey, Kevin A; Kaiser, Martha D


    Humans are especially tuned to the movements of other people. Neural correlates of this social attunement have been proposed to lie in and around the right posterior superior temporal sulcus (STS) region, which robustly responds to biological motion in contrast to a variety of non-biological motions. This response persists even when no form information is provided, as in point-light displays (PLDs). The aim of the current study was to assess the ability of functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) to reliably measure brain responses to PLDs of biological motion, and determine the sensitivity of these responses to interpersonal contextual factors. To establish reliability, we measured brain activation to biological motion with fNIRS and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during two separate sessions in an identical group of 12 participants. To establish sensitivity, brain responses to biological motion measured with fNIRS were subjected to an additional social manipulation where participants were either socially included or excluded before viewing PLDs of biological motion. Results revealed comparable brain responses to biological motion using fMRI and fNIRS in the right supramarginal gyrus. Further, social inclusion increased brain responses to biological motion in right supramarginal gyrus and posterior STS. Thus, fNIRS can reliably measure brain responses to biological motion and can detect social experience-dependent modulations of these brain responses.

  19. Fröhlich Condensate: Emergence of Synergetic Dissipative Structures in Information Processing Biological and Condensed Matter Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberto Luzzi


    Full Text Available We consider the case of a peculiar complex behavior in open boson systems sufficiently away from equilibrium, having relevance in the functioning of information-processing biological and condensed matter systems. This is the so-called Fröhlich–Bose–Einstein condensation, a self-organizing-synergetic dissipative structure, a phenomenon apparently working in biological processes and present in several cases of systems of boson-like quasi-particles in condensed inorganic matter. Emphasis is centered on the quantum-mechanical-statistical irreversible thermodynamics of these open systems, and the informational characteristics of the phenomena.

  20. Folic acid: nutritional biochemistry, molecular biology, and role in disease processes. (United States)

    Lucock, M


    This paper reviews the chemistry, metabolism, and molecular biology of folic acid, with a particular emphasis on how it is, or may be, involved in many disease processes. Folic acid prevents neural tube defects like spina bifida, while its ability to lower homocysteine suggests it might have a positive influence on cardiovascular disease. A role for this B vitamin in maintaining good health may, in fact, extend beyond these clinical conditions to encompass other birth defects, several types of cancer, dementia, affective disorders, Down's syndrome, and serious conditions affecting pregnancy outcome. The effect of folate in these conditions can be explained largely within the context of folate-dependent pathways leading to methionine and nucleotide biosynthesis, and genetic variability resulting from a number of common polymorphisms of folate-dependent enzymes involved in the homocysteine remethylation cycle. Allelic variants of folate genes that have a high frequency in the population, and that may play a role in disease formation include 677C --> T-MTHFR, 1298A --> C-MTHFR, 2756A --> G-MetSyn, and 66A --> G-MSR. Future work will probably uncover further polymorphisms of folate metabolism, and lead to a wider understanding of the interaction between this essential nutrient and the many genes which underpin its enzymatic utilization in a plethora of critical biosynthetic reactions, and which, under adverse nutritional conditions, may promote disease.

  1. Biological Denitrification of High Nitrate Processing Wastewaters from Explosives Production Plant. (United States)

    Cyplik, Paweł; Marecik, Roman; Piotrowska-Cyplik, Agnieszka; Olejnik, Anna; Drożdżyńska, Agnieszka; Chrzanowski, Lukasz


    Wastewater samples originating from an explosives production plant (3,000 mg N l(-1) nitrate, 4.8 mg l(-1) nitroglycerin, 1.9 mg l(-1) nitroglycol and 1,200 mg l(-1) chemical oxygen demand) were subjected to biological purification. An attempt to completely remove nitrate and to decrease the chemical oxygen demand was carried out under anaerobic conditions. A soil isolated microbial consortium capable of biodegrading various organic compounds and reduce nitrate to atmospheric nitrogen under anaerobic conditions was used. Complete removal of nitrates with simultaneous elimination of nitroglycerin and ethylene glycol dinitrate (nitroglycol) was achieved as a result of the conducted research. Specific nitrate reduction rate was estimated at 12.3 mg N g(-1) VSS h(-1). Toxicity of wastewater samples during the denitrification process was studied by measuring the activity of dehydrogenases in the activated sludge. Mutagenicity was determined by employing the Ames test. The maximum mutagenic activity did not exceed 0.5. The obtained results suggest that the studied wastewater samples did not exhibit mutagenic properties.

  2. Extraction of flavonoids from Tagetes patula: process optimization and screening for biological activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa M. Munhoz


    Full Text Available The flowers of Tagetes patula L., Asteraceae, commonly known as French marigold, are used in folk medicine as an antiseptic, diuretic, blood purifier and insect repellent. This study was conducted to optimize the extraction process through the biomonitoring of flavonoids, using a statistical mixture simplex-centroid design, to evaluate the effect of the solvents water, ethanol and acetone, as well as mixtures of these solvents, assessed by the total flavonoid content. The extracts were tested for dry residue, radical scavenging activity, chromatographic profile, and larvicidal activity. The acetone extract had the highest total flavonoid content, 25.13 ± 1.02% (4.07%; and the best radical scavenging activity, with IC50 of 15.74 μg/ml ± 1.09 (6.92%, but with lower dry residue, 6.62 ± 1.33% (20.10%. The water extracts showed higher levels of dry residue, but lower total flavonoid content and radical scavenging activity than the acetone extract. The positive correlation between the total flavonoid content and radical scavenging activity of the extracts showed that flavonoids contribute significantly to the antioxidant capacity. The statistical mixture design allowed us to optimize the extraction of flavonoids from flowers of T. patula, with acetone as the best extraction solvent. Preliminary studies on the biological activity of the optimized extracts demonstrated a larvicidal effect of the acetone extract on Aedes aegypti mosquitoes.

  3. BioAir: Bio-Inspired Airborne Infrastructure Reconfiguration (United States)


    UAV ) in order to autonomously form and maintain a dynamic communication network. This system draws upon inspirations from biological cell...presents the BioAIR system for autonomous communication , command and control of a swarm of UAVs . The idea is to form a communication network comprised of...deployment, yet maintaining communications should not interfere with the primary tasks of these entities. The BioAIR system was developed to coordinate

  4. Generating quantitative models describing the sequence specificity of biological processes with the stabilized matrix method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sette Alessandro


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Many processes in molecular biology involve the recognition of short sequences of nucleic-or amino acids, such as the binding of immunogenic peptides to major histocompatibility complex (MHC molecules. From experimental data, a model of the sequence specificity of these processes can be constructed, such as a sequence motif, a scoring matrix or an artificial neural network. The purpose of these models is two-fold. First, they can provide a summary of experimental results, allowing for a deeper understanding of the mechanisms involved in sequence recognition. Second, such models can be used to predict the experimental outcome for yet untested sequences. In the past we reported the development of a method to generate such models called the Stabilized Matrix Method (SMM. This method has been successfully applied to predicting peptide binding to MHC molecules, peptide transport by the transporter associated with antigen presentation (TAP and proteasomal cleavage of protein sequences. Results Herein we report the implementation of the SMM algorithm as a publicly available software package. Specific features determining the type of problems the method is most appropriate for are discussed. Advantageous features of the package are: (1 the output generated is easy to interpret, (2 input and output are both quantitative, (3 specific computational strategies to handle experimental noise are built in, (4 the algorithm is designed to effectively handle bounded experimental data, (5 experimental data from randomized peptide libraries and conventional peptides can easily be combined, and (6 it is possible to incorporate pair interactions between positions of a sequence. Conclusion Making the SMM method publicly available enables bioinformaticians and experimental biologists to easily access it, to compare its performance to other prediction methods, and to extend it to other applications.

  5. Performance of biological phosphorus removal and characteristics of microbial community in the oxic-settling-anaerobic process by FISH analysis

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jian-fang WANG; Qing-liang ZHAO; Wen-biao JIN; Shi-jie YOU; Jin-na ZHANG


    Performance of biological phosphorus removal in the oxic-settling-anaerobic (OSA) process was investigated. Cell staining and fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) were used to analyze characteristics and microbial community of sludge.Experimental results showed that phosphorus removal efficiency was near 60% and the amount of biological phosphorus accumulation in aerobic sludge of the OSA system was up to 26.9 mg/g. Biological phosphorus removal efficiency was partially inhibited by carbon sources in the continuous OSA system. Contrasted to the OSA system, biological phosphorus removal efficiency was enhanced by 14% and the average total phosphorus (TP) contents of aerobic sludge were increased by 0.36 mg/g when sufficient carbon sources were supplied in batch experiments. Staining methods indicated that about 35% of microorganisms had typical characteristics of phosphorus accumulating organisms (PAOs). FISH analysis demonstrated that PAOMIX-binding bacteria were predominant microbial communities in the OSA system, which accounted for around 28% of total bacteria.

  6. Neural networks and neuroscience-inspired computer vision. (United States)

    Cox, David Daniel; Dean, Thomas


    Brains are, at a fundamental level, biological computing machines. They transform a torrent of complex and ambiguous sensory information into coherent thought and action, allowing an organism to perceive and model its environment, synthesize and make decisions from disparate streams of information, and adapt to a changing environment. Against this backdrop, it is perhaps not surprising that computer science, the science of building artificial computational systems, has long looked to biology for inspiration. However, while the opportunities for cross-pollination between neuroscience and computer science are great, the road to achieving brain-like algorithms has been long and rocky. Here, we review the historical connections between neuroscience and computer science, and we look forward to a new era of potential collaboration, enabled by recent rapid advances in both biologically-inspired computer vision and in experimental neuroscience methods. In particular, we explore where neuroscience-inspired algorithms have succeeded, where they still fail, and we identify areas where deeper connections are likely to be fruitful.

  7. Sequential ozone advanced oxidation and biological oxidation processes to remove selected pharmaceutical contaminants from an urban wastewater. (United States)

    Espejo, Azahara; Aguinaco, Almudena; García-Araya, J F; Beltrán, Fernando J


    Sequential treatments consisting in a chemical process followed by a conventional biological treatment, have been applied to remove mixtures of nine contaminants of pharmaceutical type spiked in a primary sedimentation effluent of a municipal wastewater. Combinations of ozone, UVA black light (BL) and Fe(III) or Fe₃O₄ catalysts constituted the chemical systems. Regardless of the Advanced Oxidation Process (AOP), the removal of pharmaceutical compounds was achieved in 1 h of reaction, while total organic carbon (TOC) only diminished between 3.4 and 6%. Among selected ozonation systems to be implemented before the biological treatment, the application of ozone alone in the pre-treatment stage is recommended due to the increase of the biodegradability observed. The application of ozone followed by the conventional biological treatment leads high TOC and COD removal rates, 60 and 61%, respectively, and allows the subsequent biological treatment works with shorter hydraulic residence time (HRT). Moreover, the influence of the application of AOPs before and after a conventional biological process was compared, concluding that the decision to take depends on the characterization of the initial wastewater with pharmaceutical compounds.

  8. Engaging Biology Undergraduates in the Scientific Process through Writing a Theoretical Research Proposal (United States)

    Stanford, Jennifer S.; Duwel, Laura E.


    It has been suggested that research experiences are an important element that should be included in all undergraduate Biology curricula. This is a difficult suggestion to accommodate due to issues with cost, space and time. We addressed this challenge through development of a capstone project in which Biology majors work in groups to develop novel…

  9. Visual Cortex Inspired CNN Model for Feature Construction in Text Analysis (United States)

    Fu, Hongping; Niu, Zhendong; Zhang, Chunxia; Ma, Jing; Chen, Jie


    Recently, biologically inspired models are gradually proposed to solve the problem in text analysis. Convolutional neural networks (CNN) are hierarchical artificial neural networks, which include a various of multilayer perceptrons. According to biological research, CNN can be improved by bringing in the attention modulation and memory processing of primate visual cortex. In this paper, we employ the above properties of primate visual cortex to improve CNN and propose a biological-mechanism-driven-feature-construction based answer recommendation method (BMFC-ARM), which is used to recommend the best answer for the corresponding given questions in community question answering. BMFC-ARM is an improved CNN with four channels respectively representing questions, answers, asker information and answerer information, and mainly contains two stages: biological mechanism driven feature construction (BMFC) and answer ranking. BMFC imitates the attention modulation property by introducing the asker information and answerer information of given questions and the similarity between them, and imitates the memory processing property through bringing in the user reputation information for answerers. Then the feature vector for answer ranking is constructed by fusing the asker-answerer similarities, answerer's reputation and the corresponding vectors of question, answer, asker, and answerer. Finally, the Softmax is used at the stage of answer ranking to get best answers by the feature vector. The experimental results of answer recommendation on the Stackexchange dataset show that BMFC-ARM exhibits better performance. PMID:27471460

  10. Visual cortex inspired CNN model for feature construction in text analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongping Fu


    Full Text Available Recently, biologically inspired models are gradually proposed to solve the problem in text analysis. Convolutional neural networks (CNN are hierarchical artificial neural networks, which include a various of multilayer perceptrons. According to biological research, CNN can be improved by bringing in the attention modulation and memory processing of primate visual cortex. In this paper, we employ the above properties of primate visual cortex to improve CNN and propose a biological-mechanism-driven-feature-construction based answer recommendation method (BMFC-ARM, which is used to recommend the best answer for the corresponding given questions in community question answering. BMFC-ARM is an improved CNN with four channels respectively representing questions, answers, asker information and answerer information, and mainly contains two stages: biological mechanism driven feature construction (BMFC and answer ranking. BMFC imitates the attention modulation property by introducing the asker information and answerer information of given questions and the similarity between them, and imitates the memory processing property through bringing in the user reputation information for answerers. Then the feature vector for answer ranking is constructed by fusing the asker-answerer similarities, answerer's reputation and the corresponding vectors of question, answer, asker and answerer. Finally, the Softmax is used at the stage of answer ranking to get best answers by the feature vector. The experimental results of answer recommendation on the Stackexchange dataset show that BMFC-ARM exhibits better performance.

  11. Natural Scene Classification Inspired by Visual Perception and Cognition Mechanisms

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Rui


    The process of human natural scene categorization consists of two correlated stages: visual perception and visual cognition of natural scenes. Inspired by this fact, we propose a biologically plausible approach for natural scene image classification. This approach consists of one visual perception model and two visual cognition models. The visual perception model, composed of two steps, is used to extract discriminative features from natural scene images. In the first step, we mimic the oriented and bandpass properties of human primary visual cortex by a special complex wavelets transform, which can decompose a natural scene image into a series of 2D spatial structure signals. In the second step, a hybrid statistical feature extraction method is used to generate gist features from those 2D spatial structure signals. Then we design a cognitive feedback model to realize adaptive optimization for the visual perception model. At last, we build a multiple semantics based cognition model to imitate human cognitive mode in rapid natural scene categorization. Experiments on natural scene datasets show that the proposed method achieves high efficiency and accuracy for natural scene classification.

  12. Decrypting $SO(10)$-inspired leptogenesis

    CERN Document Server

    Di Bari, Pasquale; Fiorentin, Michele Re


    Encouraged by the recent results from neutrino oscillation experiments, we perform an analytical study of $SO(10)$-inspired models and leptogenesis with hierarchical right-handed (RH) neutrino spectrum. Under the approximation of negligible misalignment between the neutrino Yukawa basis and the charged lepton basis, we find an analytical expression for the final asymmetry directly in terms of the low energy neutrino parameters that fully reproduces previous numerical results. This expression also shows that is possible to identify an effective leptogenesis phase for these models. When we also impose the wash-out of a large pre-existing asymmetry $N^{\\rm p,i}_{B-L}$, the strong thermal (ST) condition, we derive analytically all those constraints on the low energy neutrino parameters that characterise the {\\rm ST}-$SO(10)$-inspired leptogenesis solution, confirming previous numerical results. In particular we show why, though neutrino masses have to be necessarily normally ordered, the solution implies an analy...

  13. Observing binary inspiral with LIGO

    CERN Document Server

    Finn, L S


    Gravitational radiation from a binary neutron star or black hole system leads to orbital decay and the eventual coalescence of the binary's components. During the last several minutes before the binary components coalesce, the radiation will enter the bandwidth of the United States Laser Inteferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) and the French/Italian VIRGO gravitational radiation detector. The combination of detector sensitivity, signal strength, and source density and distribution all point to binary inspiral as the most likely candidate for observation among all the anticipated sources of gravitational radiation for LIGO/VIRGO. Here I review briefly some of the questions that are posed to theorists by the impending observation of binary inspiral.

  14. Modeling latency code processing in the electric sense: from the biological template to its VLSI implementation. (United States)

    Engelmann, Jacob; Walther, Tim; Grant, Kirsty; Chicca, Elisabetta; Gómez-Sena, Leonel


    Understanding the coding of sensory information under the temporal constraints of natural behavior is not yet well resolved. There is a growing consensus that spike timing or latency coding can maximally exploit the timing of neural events to make fast computing elements and that such mechanisms are essential to information processing functions in the brain. The electric sense of mormyrid fish provides a convenient biological model where this coding scheme can be studied. The sensory input is a physically ordered spatial pattern of current densities, which is coded in the precise timing of primary afferent spikes. The neural circuits of the processing pathway are well known and the system exhibits the best known illustration of corollary discharge, which provides the reference to decoding the sensory afferent latency pattern. A theoretical model has been constructed from available electrophysiological and neuroanatomical data to integrate the principal traits of the neural processing structure and to study sensory interaction with motor-command-driven corollary discharge signals. This has been used to explore neural coding strategies at successive stages in the network and to examine the simulated network capacity to reproduce output neuron responses. The model shows that the network has the ability to resolve primary afferent spike timing differences in the sub-millisecond range, and that this depends on the coincidence of sensory and corollary discharge-driven gating signals. In the integrative and output stages of the network, corollary discharge sets up a proactive background filter, providing temporally structured excitation and inhibition within the network whose balance is then modulated locally by sensory input. This complements the initial gating mechanism and contributes to amplification of the input pattern of latencies, conferring network hyperacuity. These mechanisms give the system a robust capacity to extract behaviorally meaningful features of the

  15. Gene-ontology enrichment analysis in two independent family-based samples highlights biologically plausible processes for autism spectrum disorders.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Anney, Richard J L


    Recent genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have implicated a range of genes from discrete biological pathways in the aetiology of autism. However, despite the strong influence of genetic factors, association studies have yet to identify statistically robust, replicated major effect genes or SNPs. We apply the principle of the SNP ratio test methodology described by O\\'Dushlaine et al to over 2100 families from the Autism Genome Project (AGP). Using a two-stage design we examine association enrichment in 5955 unique gene-ontology classifications across four groupings based on two phenotypic and two ancestral classifications. Based on estimates from simulation we identify excess of association enrichment across all analyses. We observe enrichment in association for sets of genes involved in diverse biological processes, including pyruvate metabolism, transcription factor activation, cell-signalling and cell-cycle regulation. Both genes and processes that show enrichment have previously been examined in autistic disorders and offer biologically plausibility to these findings.

  16. Systematization of the protein sequence diversity in enzymes related to secondary metabolic pathways in plants, in the context of big data biology inspired by the KNApSAcK motorcycle database. (United States)

    Ikeda, Shun; Abe, Takashi; Nakamura, Yukiko; Kibinge, Nelson; Hirai Morita, Aki; Nakatani, Atsushi; Ono, Naoaki; Ikemura, Toshimichi; Nakamura, Kensuke; Altaf-Ul-Amin, Md; Kanaya, Shigehiko


    Biology is increasingly becoming a data-intensive science with the recent progress of the omics fields, e.g. genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics. The species-metabolite relationship database, KNApSAcK Core, has been widely utilized and cited in metabolomics research, and chronological analysis of that research work has helped to reveal recent trends in metabolomics research. To meet the needs of these trends, the KNApSAcK database has been extended by incorporating a secondary metabolic pathway database called Motorcycle DB. We examined the enzyme sequence diversity related to secondary metabolism by means of batch-learning self-organizing maps (BL-SOMs). Initially, we constructed a map by using a big data matrix consisting of the frequencies of all possible dipeptides in the protein sequence segments of plants and bacteria. The enzyme sequence diversity of the secondary metabolic pathways was examined by identifying clusters of segments associated with certain enzyme groups in the resulting map. The extent of diversity of 15 secondary metabolic enzyme groups is discussed. Data-intensive approaches such as BL-SOM applied to big data matrices are needed for systematizing protein sequences. Handling big data has become an inevitable part of biology.

  17. Commentary: "A systems view on the future of medicine: Inspiration from Chinese medicine?"

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verpoorte, R.; Crommelin, D.; Danhof, M.; Gilissen, L.J.W.J.; Schuitmaker, H.; Greef, de J.; Witkamp, R.F.


    Chinese medicine could serve as a source of inspiration for drug development. Using systems biology in combination with reverse pharmacology is a novel way for the discovery of novel biological active compounds and targets as well as for proving the occurrence of synergy and prodrugs. A key factor f

  18. In situ identification of polyphosphate- and polyhydroxyalkanoate-accumulating traits for microbial populations in a biological phosphorus removal process

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liu, W.-T.; Nielsen, Alex Toftgaard; Wu, JH


    Polyphosphate- and polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA)- accumulating traits of predominant microorganisms in an efficient enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) process were investigated systematically using a suite of non-culture-dependent methods. Results of 16S rDNA clone library and fluorescence...

  19. Enhanced biological processes associated with alopecia in polar bears (Ursus maritimus) (United States)

    Bowen, Lizabeth; Miles, A. Keith; Stott, Jeffrey L.; Waters, Shannon C.; Atwood, Todd C.


    Populations of wildlife species worldwide experience incidents of mass morbidity and mortality. Primary or secondary drivers of these events may escape classical detection methods for identifying microbial insults, toxin exposure, or additional stressors. In 2012, 28% of polar bears sampled in a study in the southern Beaufort Sea region of Alaska had varying degrees of alopecia that was concomitant with reduced body condition. Concurrently, elevated numbers of sick or dead ringed seals were detected in the southern Beaufort, Chukchi, and Bering seas in 2012, resulting in the declaration of an unusual mortality event (UME) by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The primary and possible ancillary causative stressors of these events are unknown, and related physiological changes within individual animals have been undetectable using classical diagnostic methods. Here we present an emerging technology as a potentially guiding investigative approach aimed at elucidating the circumstances responsible for the susceptibility of certain polar bears to observed conditions. Using transcriptomic analysis we identified enhanced biological processes including immune response, viral defense, and response to stress in polar bears with alopecia. Our results support an alternative mechanism of investigation into the causative agents that, when used proactively, could serve as an early indicator for populations and species at risk. We suggest that current or classical methods for investigation into events of unusual morbidity and mortality can be costly, sometimes unfocused, and often inconclusive. Advances in technology allow for implementation of a holistic system of surveillance and investigation that could provide early warning of health concerns in wildlife species important to humans.

  20. Biological efficacy and toxic effect of emergency water disinfection process based on advanced oxidation technology. (United States)

    Tian, Yiping; Yuan, Xiaoli; Xu, Shujing; Li, Rihong; Zhou, Xinying; Zhang, Zhitao


    An innovative and removable water treatment system consisted of strong electric field discharge and hydrodynamic cavitation based on advanced oxidation technologies was developed for reactive free radicals producing and waterborne pathogens eliminating in the present study. The biological efficacy and toxic effects of this advanced oxidation system were evaluated during water disinfection treatments. Bench tests were carried out with synthetic microbial-contaminated water, as well as source water in rainy season from a reservoir of Dalian city (Liaoning Province, China). Results showed that high inactivation efficiency of Escherichia coli (>5 log) could be obtained for synthetic contaminated water at a low concentration (0.5-0.7 mg L(-1)) of total oxidants in 3-10 s. The numbers of wild total bacteria (108 × 10(3) CFU mL(-1)) and total coliforms (260 × 10(2) MPN 100 mL(-1)) in source water greatly reduced to 50 and 0 CFU mL(-1) respectively after treated by the advanced oxidation system, which meet the microbiological standards of drinking water, and especially that the inactivation efficiency of total coliforms could reach 100%. Meanwhile, source water qualities were greatly improved during the disinfection processes. The values of UV254 in particular were significantly reduced (60-80%) by reactive free radicals. Moreover, the concentrations of possible disinfection by-products (formaldehyde and bromide) in treated water were lower than detection limits, indicating that there was no harmful effect on water after the treatments. These investigations are helpful for the ecotoxicological studies of advanced oxidation system in the treatments of chemical polluted water or waste water. The findings of this work suggest that the developed water treatment system is ideal in the acute phases of emergencies, which also could offer additional advantages over a wide range of applications in water pollution control.